Rev. William Cotton

Rev. William Cotton ca 1600 – ca 1646
ca 1625 1st wife unknown
& ca 1636 Ann Graves 1620 – ca 1682

of Cheshire England and Hungar Parish, Accomac Co VA

This is my working hypothesis – the way I see it as of this moment!!

 William married ca 1636 Ann Graves (1620 – ca 1682) daughter of the ancient planter Thomas Graves.

William Cotton [ca 1600 – ca 1646] was minister of Hungar Parish in Accomac County, VA [ca 1632-1646]. His mother Joane Cotton was from Cheshire, England. [His father was Andrew Cotton, Gent. of Bunbury in Cheshire and his grandfather was Richard Cotton, Esquire of “Combermere” Cheshire and his grandmother Mary Mainwaring the daughter of Sir Arthur Mainwaring, Knight of Ightfield, High Sheriff of Cheshire in 1563.]

The Rev. William Cotton of Northampton Co., VA. married ca 1636 Ann Graves (1620 – ca 1682) daughter of the ancient planter Thomas Graves, who held land on the same tract as the glebe land. Cotton patented his first land across a creek from that of William Stone who had married Verlinda Graves, the sister of Ann Graves Cotton. [to add confusion: James Truslow Adams describes Ann Graves Cotton as “the only surviving child of Thomas Graves of Dorchester, Mass.”]

Cotton made his will 20 Aug 1640, “weake in body” and died shortly thereafter. He desires to be buried by his two little children; to his child yet unborn he gives his plantation at Bunbury and his negroes; in default of issue to his mother Joane Cotton and the other one-third to his wife Ann Cotton; brother-in-law Capt. Wm. Stone and Capt. Wm. Roper to be overseers of his will.

On January 13, 1659, “William Cotton, of Virginia, marriner,” son and heir of William Cotton, for 25¬£ of English money sold to William Kendall, of Accomac Co, VA one house with two tenements at Bedminster, near Bristol, formerly belonging to his father, Wm. Cotton, deceased.
(William and Mary College Quarterly 5 (1) 123-4)

According to Jay B Hubbell the will was proved 11 Nov, 1646. Both of the surviving sons John and William Jr. must have been born after the minister made his will on 20 August 1840.
Hmm -I think he could have had an earlier wife who perhaps was mother of William 

Ann married next Rev. Nathaniel Eaton [1609- 1674] who was fleeing debt and an unsavory reputation in New England. He soon deserted her.
She later married in 1657 Francis Doughty, another Eastern Shore minister.

Children of William Cotton & Ann Graves:
1. Verlinda Cotton 1638 VA. –
married Thomas Burdett
?Children of William Cotton & a first wife
2. William Cotton ca 1636 –

1704 Thomas Cotten and Walter Cotten each held 257 acres in Surry.
Catherine Cotton had 50 acres in King and Queen Co
John Cotton had 200 acres Isle of Wight Co
John Cotton had 50 acres Elizabeth City Co
James Cotton had 70 acres in Warwick Co
William Cotten had 143 acres in Warwick Co

William Cotton
of Staffordshire, England

Although unproved that John, Walter, and Thomas Cotton of the records of Staffordshire, England are the same as the ones in colonial Virginia they do fit the profile. Dr. Neil Thompson of Salt Lake City, Utah, who made this report for Hikaru said “the published version [of the registers] has been verified with the originals.” He notes also “that none of the Cotton children were married at Wolverhampton and an examination of original registers to 1700 have not uncovered any burials for William Cotton, his unnamed wife, or any of his children, which strengthens the hypothesis that we may be dealing with the immigrants to Virginia in Walter and Thomas Cotton.” used here with permission of Hikaru.

Children of William Cotton of Staffordshire:
1. [William Cotton ca 1634-]
2. [Richard Cotton ca 1636] – 22 Mar 1638/9 buried
3. John Cotton bapt 1 May 1638 – 15 Mar 1640/1 buried
4. John Cotton bapt 15 June 1641 –
5. Walter Cotton bapt 1 May 1643 –
[ married Elizabeth ?]
6. Ann Cotton bapt 24 June 1645 –
7. Thomas Cotton bapt 18 Apr 1647 – 1718 Surry Co, VA blacksmith
married 1st Susannah
married 2nd Mary ? ca 1658 +/- 7yr – 1729
widow of Richard Hyde died bef 25 Feb 1710/11]
8. Elizabeth Cotton bapt 17 Oct 1651 –
9. Katherine Cotton bapt 31 July 1655 –

1638 to 1655 records of the family of William Cotton appear in the Registers of Wolverhampton, Staffordshire, England.

Thomas and Walter Cotton
of Charles City & Surry Counties VA

see this site for latest results… 6/21/05
a y-chromesome study shows that apparently John of Bertie’s line is not related to Walter’s line
[or at least Thomas of TN who was married to Priscilla Knight is not.]

1683–Thomas Cotten 335 acres Up Par of Surry Co on NE side of the Otter Dam sw. 16 Apr 1683 p 280 Adj Mr John Barker, neere his cart path, & trans. of 7 pers.

1687, 19 Oct Walter and Thomas Cotten appear on a list of Surry County men qualified to serve as foot soldiers in the militia.

1687–Mr Benjamin Harrison 330 acres – –above Thomas Cotten’s br on eastern Spring Br—

1688, 20 Oct–Mr Walter Cotton & Thomas Cotten 314 acres, Up Par of Surry co.adj, Mr John Barker & sd Thomas Cotten-p.670.

1704 Thomas Cotten and Walter Cotten each held 257 acres in Surry.

1711–Silvanus Stokes Jr 24 (+NL) Chas City, N side of James River—to where Thomas Cotton, late of sd. county lived.

February the 26th 1718 In the Name of God Amen I Thomas Cotten being in perfect since and memory bequeath my Soul to God that gave it me and body to
the Earth to be decently buried. my Estate as followeth when all my debts are paid
I give unto my loving wife Mary Cotten my plantation and Land belonging to it during her naturall life & after her decease to my Cousin Thomas Cotten son of Walter Cotten and Elizabeth his wife to the said Tomas Cotton & his heirs Lawfully begotten of his body for ever never to be (…) nor morgaged (…..) the first heir shall pretend to either of these the next shall (…. …) upon the said land and (…. ….) of I give and bequeath to my loving wife Mary Cotten the two feather beds bolster pillows blanketts Sheets & two rugs two pair of Curtaines Valan(.)s bedsteads Cords and whatelse belongs to them in that (…) room this I give to her and her disposing.
I give and bequeath to mary Smith daughter of John Smith & Elizabeth his wife one feather bed bolster blankets & rug a pair of Sheets more. I give to the said Mary (…….) pewter dishes & two pewter plates.
I give to my Cousin Thomas Cotten a feather bed bolster one blanket (… .. … ) & the bedstead bilong
I give unto Richard Hide my best belt
I give and bequeath to my Loving wife Mary Cotten all the rest of my Estate my Cattell hogs sheep horses all the (…. …. ..) pewter b(…….) & all (…. …… …….) in the (…..)
I give unto my Cousin Thomas Cotton all my remaining Estate
I give unto my Cousin William Cotton one Shilling
I give unto my kinswoman Anne Mylone one Shilling
I make and impower my Loving wife Mary Cottin my Executrix of this my last will and testament whereunto I have put my hand and Seal
Thomas [TC] Cott(..) his mark and seal
In the Presence of us
Jethro Baxter Senior, John Johnson, Grace Baxter

At a Court held at Southwark for the County of Surry March the 18th 1718
The (……) mentioned Will of Thomas Cotten Deceased was presented in Court by Mary Cotten Executrix thereof who made oath thereto and being proved by the oaths of Jethro Baxter & Higb Higbsib (……..) thereto the same is ordered to be recorded and is recorded by

Children of Walter Cotton & Elizabeth:
1. William Cotton d. 1787
called nephew in Uncle’s will – of Prince George Co VA
married Lucy
a. John Cotton
2. Thomas Cotton II 1692+/-3 – ca Jan 1779 Sussex Co, VA
married ca 1716 Jane/Jean Hyde/Hide ca 1697 – 2 Dec 1768 of cancer
a. John Cotton 1717 –
married Lucy ?
i. Amelia Cotton 1739 –
ii. Sarah Cotton 1741 –
iii. Jane Cotton 1744 –
iv. Ephraim Cotton 1746 –
b. Thomas Cotton 1720 +/-1 – 1792 VA no issue
c. Nathaniel Cotton 1723 +/-1 – 1794 VA no issue
d. William Cotton 1725 +/-2 – of Sussex Co
married by 1759 Elizabeth Alsobrook
i. Selah [ Sylvia] Cotton 14 Dec 1759 –
married Richard Smith
ii. Jeremiah Cotton 31 May 1761 –
iii. Lucretia Cotton 14 Nov 1762 –
married James Clements
iv. Wells Cotton 31 Dec 1763 –
v. Hardy Cotton 1 Feb 1766 –
married Patty Saunders
vi. Alsobrook 20 Aug 1768 –
e. Richard Cotton 1727 +/-1 – 1789 Sussex Co, VA
married Elizabeth (Betty) ?
Bradley Abstract: NH Co, NC Deed Bk 5 p 105 Richard Cotton & his wife Betty of Sussex Co, VA to Samuel Lockhart of Northampton Co. 11 Feb 1771. 60£ VA. 105 acres which sd. Cotton purchased from John Davis, joining Wm. Ragland, Sanl. Lockhart, Robet Melone. Rich. Cotton, Betty (x) Cotton. Wit: Wm. Hudson, Seth Cotton, Wm. Hudson, Jr. Sep Ct 1771. Femme was examined & relinquished her dower. C/C Willie Jones
i. Sarah [Sally] Cotton 2 Jan 1748 –
married Daniel Ivey
ii. Seth Cotton 1 Nov 1749 Sussex Co, VA – May 1815 ancestor of Hikaru
married Rebecca Avent
1. William Cotton ca 1769 – ca 1839 Randolph Co GA
married Mary
married Nancy
a. Seth Joseph Cotton 1790 Chatham Co NC – aft 1870 Dale Co AL
married ca 1819 Mary [Polly] King 28 June 1799 NC – aft 1870 Dale Co AL
dau of Drewry King and wife Salley
b. Sarah Cotton
married James J Smith
2. Gabriel Cotton 1765/84 – bef 8 Mar 1822 [Inv] Chatham Co NC
married Milly
3. John Cotton 22 Oct 1772 Sussex Co VA –
4. Avent Cotton
married Winnefred
5. Richard C Cotton
6. Betsey Cotton
7. Sally Cotton
8. Rebeckah Cotton
9. Polly Cotton
iii. Harris Cotton 25 Aug 1753 – bef 7 Sept 1797 ancestor of Beth
married Deidamia Gary – ca 1798
iv. Rebecca Cotton 29 Mar 1756 –
married 15 Nov 1779 Samuel Mangum
v. Archibald 28 Feb Cotton 1759 –
married Caty Hill
vi. Jane (Jiney) Cotton 14 April 1762 – issue
married Mr. Cook
1. Elizabeth Cook
vii. Cary Cotton 12 Mar 1765 Sussex Co, VA –
married 13 Dec 1792 Nancy Harrison
viii. Weaver Cotton 2 July 1768 Sussex Co, VA – 1832 Grantville, GA
married 1st Rachel issue
married 2nd Sarah Elizabeth Bennett issue
ix. William Cotton 2 July 1768 – bef 1786 twin of Weaver
f. Mary Cotton aft 1718/bef 1729 – bef Sept. 1743
g. David Cotton 1732 +/-3 – aft 1779
h. Henry Cotton 1736 +/-2 – 1790
married Sarah
i. Betty Cotton 3 Jan 1762 –
ii. Thomas Cotton 21 May 1766 –
i. Stephen Isham Cotton 13 May 1739 – aft 1779 nfi
j. Drewry Cotton Aug 1741 –
married Phoebe
i. Herbert Cotton 17 Oct 1762 –
ii. Littleberry Cotton 10 Mar 1764 –
iii. Mason Cotton 14 Feb 1768 –
married Thomas Pond
k. Mary Cotton 3 April 1743 – dy

? his child by Elizabeth Callum
l. Frederick Cotton 1744 –
married 1789 Polly Christian

Thomas Cotten [blacksmith] and wife Susanna appear to have no children
Thomas Cotten and wife Mary d 1729 appear to have no children
but Mary and Richard Hyde d 1710 had:
1. Richard Hyde ca 1671 – 1719
a. David Hyde
2. Elizabeth Hyde
married John Smith
a. John Smith bef 1710 –
b. Anne Smith bef 1710 –
c. Mary Smith bef 1718 –
3. Jane [Jean] Hyde ca 1697 –
married Thomas Cotton II

Ref: Tidewater Virginia Families by Virginia Lee Hutcheson Davis

2 thoughts on “Rev. William Cotton”

  1. I am enjoying your information. I think that I came from the Benton’s/Cotton’s. It is so exciting to find out all this information. Are there any of the places in or around Roanoke that is still there? I would love to visit that area but don’t know exactly where to start. If you have any information that would help me, I would appreciate it. I just want to go there and just see and feel that I belong. Are they any plantations that I could visit ,, etc? Thank you in advance.

  2. Thank you for sharing this. I have really enjoyed your site. Is Maple Lawn still available for tours. Also where would you recommend I go to learn more about the Cotton ancestry in this region ? I’m intrigued and fascinated by this new found family that are my ancestors. In the genealogy report, It carried us back to John “Bertie” Cotton. Thank you for the information you have already provided.

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