New From 2015

John Meacham points to

More on Children of John Burk 1760-1836), son of James Burk “II”

Early Settlers of Wayne County, Indiana


New for 2010 and 2011

From Les Tate: Trail Found for James Burk (“II”) and John Burk, his son

Peggy Morphew finds Burk's 1734 Chester County Warrant

& Burk's Goose Creek Land in Today's Roanoke City

James Burk's Grandchildren in greater detail

Capt. Benjamin Burke: Montgomery County, Va. Children


James Burk (Burke) – Virginia Frontiersman 

Born about 1705 (various dates, mostly earlier) in Ulster or Limerick, Ireland; nothing concrete. 

Died 1783 Surry County, North Carolina

Immigrated to America before 1730

Married 1st to Mary Bane on 11 September 1730 at Goshen Meeting House,

               Chester County, Pennsylvania.  Married 2nd to Lucretia Reese/Rees Griffith between 29 May and 29 August 1751 in Augusta County, Virginia.

Father: Speculation exists. No Burks attended or were witnesses to James Burk's wedding, despite reports of one or more Burks in the area.   Names given to his children do not seem to follow strict Quaker naming patterns.


Mary Bane: Some gedcoms use Mary Jane Bane, but neither Goshen Quakers nor other records mention “Jane.”

Born about 1710 Goshen Quaker settlement, Chester County, Pennsylvania

Died 1748 or 1749 in Augusta County, Virginia

Father was Mordecai Bane (born 1683 in England or Scotland and died 1747 Goshen, Chester County, Pa.)  

Mother was Naomi Smedley or Medley (born 1683 in Chester County, Pa. and died April 1731 at Chester County, Pa.) 

Bane spelling changes to "Bean" for brothers James Sr. and Isaac are probably a result of pronunciation.           


Lucretia Reece/Rees, 2nd marriage.

Born: unknown date

Died about 1786 in Surry County, North Carolina

Parents: unknown

1st Husband:  Methusalem or Methusaleh Griffith married 2 February 1730 at Christ Church, Philadelphia to Lucretia Reece.  (Courtesy of Marshel Roy Cunningham, e-mail 21 June 2005.)

Children by first marriage:  (1) Morris Griffith (died 1764 Augusta Co., Va.), (2) Benjamin Griffith (born 18 November 1739), (3) John Griffith, an active American Revolutionary Tory mentioned in Col. William Preston Papers - alive in 1780, (4) Lucretia Griffith Wilson (born 18 June 1742) who was in James Burk's 1783 will, (5) Hannah Griffith (16 February 173?), (6) Elizabeth Griffith (6/8 September 1734).               

2nd Edition, Morphew/Murphy Story – J.R. Murphy, 1 December 2015, previous update 12 November 2012


*See special map of Virginia and North Carolina Landmarks for Burks and Morphews – map3.TIF


*See special map of Burkes Garden in Virginia – map2.TIF


This Chapter Contains the Following Burk Line:


James Burk “I” (~1705 Ireland to 1783 Surry Co. NC) + Mary Bane (~1710 to ~1748 Augusta Co. Va.) + Lucretia Reece/Rees Griffith (d – 1786 Surry Co. NC).  Their children (I) to (VII).


(I). Mary Burk (~1732 Chester Co. Pa. to >1802 Ashe Co. NC) + James Morphew (1715/1725 to 1775/1783).  See their chapter.

(II). Honoura Burk (~1733 to 1775/1782) + William Brookshire.  11 Children.

(III). Sarah Burk (~1735 to 1782+) + Samuel Wilson, Sr. (~1733 to 1804/06 Tn).  Children (1 to 3):

(1). Mary “Polly” Wilson (1758-1843) + Capt. John Lucus (1749 – 1836) Am Rev. Patriot, (2). Samuel Wilson “II,” (3). Theodocia Wilson (1773) + Benjamin Johnson.

(IV). James Burk “II” (~1737 – 1776, Ensign – died Am. Revolution - Patriot) + Amey __.  One child (1):

(1). John Burk (1760 Rockbridge Co. Va. to 1836 Wayne Co. Indiana)  Children (I to viii):

(i). James Burk “I” (1782 to 1841+?) + Sallie Turner.  At least 7 children.

(ii). William Burk (1785 to 1820 Wayne Co. Indiana) + Nancy __ (~1785 to 1838 Berrien Co. Michigan).  7 children including Moses Burk of Berrien County.

(iii). Mary Burk (1787) died young.  (iv) Benjamin Burk (1789) died young.

(v). Jesse Burk (1791 to 1838+) + Elizabeth or Betsy Watson (1791/92 to 1850+).  5 children.

(vi). Dorcas Burk (1794) + Elisha Jacobs(?)

(vii). John Burk “II” (1797 Ky. to 1870 Wayne Co. Indiana) + Peggy Yaryan or Yeager, More than 4 children.

(viii). Lewis Burk (1799 Ky. to 1877 Wayne Co. Indiana) + Maria Moffett.  One daughter reached adulthood.

(V). Capt. Benjamin Burk (~1739 to 1780 Surry Co. NC., died Am. Revolution - Tory) + Mary Grant.  7 Children (1 to 7).

  (1). Josiah Burk + Rebecca Bean + Polly Orr, (2). Samuel Burk (died 1815) + Nancy/Ann Sovain, (3). Elizabeth “Betsey” Burk + Hiram Davis, (4). John Burk, (5). Honora Burk + John S. Peterson, (6). Benjamin Burk, (7). Thomas Burk (bachelor, died 1797)

(VI). Joseph Burk (~1744 to 1785/86 Montgomery Co. Va.) + Margaret Grant.  7 children:

(1). Jonathan Burk (1770/75 to >1830) + Sally Cooper, (2). James Burk, (3). Mary Burk + Jacob Shull (Shell), (4). Sarah “Sallie” Burk + Richard Heaven, (5). Naomi Burk + Bolling Rogers, (6). Nancy Burk + Jacob Douglass, (7). Rebecca Burk

(VII). Naomi Burk (1746 to 1824 Montgomery Co. Va.) + Samuel Pepper of Pepper’s Ferry.  8 children (I to 8):

(1). Mary “Polly” Pepper (1765 to 1830 Putnam Co. In.) + John Heavin, (2) Joseph Pepper (~1769 to 1801), (3). James Pepper (~1771), (4). Sarah “Sally” Pepper (~1773), (5). John Pepper (~1775), (6). William Pepper (~1776) + Jane Raeburn, (7). Possibly – Samuel Pepper “II,” (8). Jesse Pepper (~1786).       


Spelling of Burk or Burke


          The spelling "Burk" appears to be the most correct form for James Burk, since both his 1783 will and 1730 Quaker marriage records spelled it "Burk."  Other original references reinforce this spelling.  At this time, I do not know how, when, or if the spelling became "Burke," i.e. Burkes Garden.  For our purposes, both Burk and Burke are interchangeable.


Use of Burk/Burke Middle Names and Initials


          A word of caution is needed here.  Some websites use middle names or middle initials for Burk and his son(s).  Middle names were not very common during the 18th century which raises questions.  We need source identification and authentication.             


Why James Burk Begins the Morphew Story


Before North Carolina, our Morphew ancestor trail nearly vanishes.   James Burk is the father-in-law for our earliest known Morphew and is easily traceable.  He is ancestor to nearly all Morphews in the United States.   Burk’s story is an adventure as exciting as any that Daniel Boone could have told. 


Burke Immigration and Chester County, Pennsylvania


James Burk (Burke) was born in Ireland, roughly 1705 or earlier, and immigrated to America before he was married.  His father is questionably reported to be John Burk (Bourk, Bourke, Burke), who also immigrated to America.  Proof is lacking.   


1730 - Bradford Township, Chester County, Pennsylvania Tax: James Burk

1730 September 11:  James Burk married Mary Bane at the Quaker Goshen Meeting House in Chester County, Pennsylvania.  No other Burkes witnessed the wedding, which raises doubts about a reported father in this county.  Quaker details of this Burk-Bane Quaker marriage can be found in the Bane Chapter (1F).   


1734 February 27:  A land warrant was issued to James Burk for 195 acres in East Bradford Township, Chester County, Pennsylvania.  Surveyor was John Taylor who dated his work 10 May 1735.   An appended note stated that "the above warrant was vacated by a warrant to Richard Woodward which was dated 1st December 1742.  Later in 3 July 1734, brother-in-law Mordecai Bean also received a Chester County warrant for 200 acres.

Courtesy of Peggy Morphew, email of 23 October 2009.  Thank you, Peggy for sharing.  That's a really nice find.  Additional source, Survey Book C223, page 5 online at Pa. State Archives


Augusta County, Virginia


To the southwest of Chester County, vast tracts of land were just opening up along western Virginia’s mighty Shenandoah and Roanoke rivers.  These wilderness lands offered untouched forests, rich river valleys, and of course, hostile Indians.


The first years in Augusta County for James Burk and his wife Mary were probably spent with her brothers, James and Isaac Bean (Bane), along the Roanoke River.  In those days, the nearest government administration was 75 or more miles to their north at Staunton.  Unless Augusta County had a roaming Circuit Court, Burk spent a lot of time traveling between his home and the county seat at Stanton as noted in numerous county court records. 


1742: James Burk joined the Augusta County Militia in Virginia and was in Captain George Robinson’s Company.  The local militia was needed to control hostile Indians in the valleys.  Within old Augusta County lies a city known as Front Royal.  This name derives from the days of James Burk, when the local troops were called to order with the command, “Front the Royal Oak!” 


Burk living on the Roanoke River in 1746

Near today's Roanoke City, Roanoke County, Virginia


1746 November 19:  Citizens were ordered to assist road construction in Augusta County.  Names included James Burk, his brother-in-law James Bean (Bane), Methuselah Griffith and sons, Ephraim Voss (Vause) and his servants, George Robinson, William Beus (Buis, Bewes) and his brother (Thomas Buis), Taskor and Thomas Tosh, Samuel Neely, and more than 15 others.   This road would be constructed from a ridge dividing the waters of New River from the waters of the South Branch of the Roanoke to end in a road that heads over the Blue Ridge.  Overseers for the road were James Campbell and Mark Evans. 


In colonial times, taxes were often issued in the form of work, and in fairness to the English administration at Staunton, a road tithable was usually issued to people living on or near the proposed road.  It was to the advantage of these people to construct the road, since it really served their needs.  However, James Burk protested to the colonial administrator at Staunton.  As a matter of fact, he protested so much and with such language, he was charged on 10 June 1747 as a “common swearer” in the Augusta Parish Registry Book and fined ten shillings, with Colonel James Patton being his security.


1747 February 26: Augusta County Court named James Burk administrator for the estate of his brother-in-law Isaac Bean – deceased.  James Burk was "his greatest creditor."   James Campbell, Ephraim Voss, James Nealy, and Ervin Patterson, or any three of them, would be selected by the Augusta County Court to appraise his small estate.  


1748 May 21: We don’t know when his wife Mary died, but it could be 1748 and her loss greatly troubled him.  On 21 May 1748, Augusta County Court charged Burk with disturbing divine service, and the case is brought before the court many times when he was absent.  Finally, the problem is settled by paying one pound to the Sheriff for Burk’s fine in 1755, almost eight years later.  


Burk's Lands in Augusta County, Virginia


James Burk received two land patents (grants) on the same day in 1748.  Processing grants takes several years and he probably was already living on them.  Where did he live?  Grant and deed clues can be used to find his actual location.


1748 September 20: Virginia State Land Office granted James Burk, 100(?) acres in Augusta County on the south side of Goose Creek beginning in William Campbell's near the mouth of a branch (unnamed).....


1748 September 20: Virginia State Land Office granted James Burk, 400 acres on north side Goose Creek on the west side of the Blue Ridge to a mouth of a branch on the north side of Goose Creek.


1753 March 21:  James Patton deeded Augusta County land to Henry Brown, Sr., 50 acres from Patton's original patent dated 3 November 1750.  This land was on or near Lick Run of Roanoke adjacent to a corner of James Burke.


1753 May 18: James Burk deeded 117 acres to James Bane, both of Augusta County, part of a tract patented to Burke, 20th September 1748, on the north side of Goose Creek, Augusta County, beginning at a double back on the bend of the creek... and runneth down (it).   Signed: James (x – his mark) Burk.  Witnesses: William Preston, James Patton, George Robinson, George McSwine.   Court: 30 May 1753.


1760 August 20 - Augusta County: Henry Brown and Alice deeded to Ester Brown for 5 pounds, 54 acres by patents, 3 November 1750, on a branch of Roanoke called Lick Run (to a) corner (of) James Burk.


Where Were Burk’s Goose Creek Lands?


Burk's Goose Creek lands were formerly thought to be located in today's Bedford County or Floyd County.   Peggy Morphew points out that the author Patricia Givens Johnson wrote: Burk "had settled on the Roanoke River at present (day) Salem, Roanoke County, Virginia.*      

* Settlers from Delaware River Come to Roanoke and New River, by Patricia Givens Johnston, 1995, page 98. Thanks go to Peggy Morphew for pointing this out in 30 November 2009


James Burk, Ephraim Vause (Voss), Charles Campbell, James Patton, and James Wood had early land grants on Goose Creek.  Goose Creek is now confirmed as an alternate name for that part of Roanoke River which runs through today's Roanoke City in Roanoke City-County.**       

** Evidence can be found the following deeds; (1) Tasker Tosh to Thomas Tosh on 28 May 1750, 120 acres on north bank of Roanoke River, "commonly called Goose Creek of Roanoke" and (2). William Martin to John Walker, Jr., 3 August 1753, 359 acres on "Mudlick Run of Roanoke, otherwise called Goose Creek.  Iron mine."  Augusta County Deed Book #3, pages 355 & 401 as mentioned in Chalkley's Chronicles, Volume #3, page 295 and 316.


Burk’s south bank land was near Lick Run which should be today’s Mud Lick Creek.  This creek flows northwest to empty into the Roanoke River (Goose Creek) within today's City of Roanoke.   Burk’s north bank lands are assumed nearby, but this is not certain.   One half mile to the west is Peter's Creek where it empties into the Roanoke River.   James Bean/Bane (Burk’s brother-in-law) had 190 acres on a branch of Peter's Creek, thought to be within the north central city limits of today's Roanoke.


A neighbor, Ephraim Vause (Voss) of Vause’s Fort had 3 land grants in 1748 and 1749; two on Goose Creek, and one further west on South Fork of the Roanoke River.   He built Vauses Fort on the South Fork land, which was located at today's Shawsville, Montgomery County, Virginia.  Burk's step-son "Morris Griffith - Vauses Fort" escaped from Indians in 1755.  On 25 June 1756, Fort Vause was over-run by Indians under French guidance with many killed and up to 150 captured and taken prisoner to Indian villages.  

Colonel James Patton's Survey Party – 1748


In the middle of May 1748, a large survey and exploring party was organized by Colonel James Patton, age 58, to explore southwest Virginia and eastern Tennessee.   His party consisted of Colonel John Buchanan who was his son-in-law, Dr. Thomas Walker (age 33), Colonel James Wood, and Major Charles Campbell.  Jobs were offered to the adventurous since the party needed guides, chain carriers, ax men, and cooks.  Among this group is James Burk and a certain “J. Murphey or Js. Murphey” who must be our earliest known Morphew.  This trip must not be confused with one undertaken in 1750 by Dr. Thomas Walker.  The 1748 expedition started out from Colonel Patton’s home near the present-day Waynesboro.  No known diary exists of their movements and accomplishments, but the original surveys and notes may still exist at the Augusta County courthouse.  This first expedition surveyed lands in Holston and Clinch River Valleys in far southwestern Virginia.


On 2 November 1748, a large snow caught the party while returning home, and they spent the night at a spot later known as Burkes Garden, which is still found on the maps in present-day Tazewell County, Virginia.  Today, Burkes Garden is considered to be one of the biologically richest areas of the state.  According to Colonel Thomas L. Preston, “It was late in the fall and the next morning, after reaching the Garden, a heavy snow had fallen and they determined to suspend their surveying until the next year.   After cooking breakfast, a man named Burke, who was in the party as an axman or chain-carrier, cleared away the place where their fire had been made and planted a lot of potato peelings, covering them lightly with brush.”  The following spring or summer, Patton and Buchanan accompanied by William Ingles, returned to the survey lands and found a large bed of potatoes where Burke had planted and they gave it the name of “Burke’s Garden.”

“Annals of Augusta County, Virginia,” by Joseph A. Waddell, 1885


Peggy Morphew recently found a Tazewell County article reviewing a long legal fight over ownership for Burkes Garden, beginning in 1781 many years after Burk migrated to North Carolina.   Court records did not involve Burk directly, but Peggy located a survey diagram showing James Burk with 400 acres within Burkes Garden.  Burk could never get this land finalized into a Virginia Land Grant or deed. ^


Johnson states Burk at some point in time sold these 400 acres to the Ingles Brothers.  Because they didn't have a clear title, the Ingles eventually went to court against the heirs of James Patton.  The latter claimed Burk had promised to show Patton about 16,000 acres of good land to survey in exchange for ten pounds and 400 acres.  Patton claimed his surveyors saw only about 4000 worthwhile acres and claimed Burk did not earn the land. ^^    


^ Information courtesy of Peggy Morphew, September 2009, her source: Tazewell County Historical Society Newsletter, Volume IX, X, 1996-7)

^^ James Patton and the Appalachian Colonists, by Patricia Givens Johnson, 1983, 3rd edition, page 73.


1748 December 13:  James Burk, Methasuleh Griffith, and others were purchasers on the Daniel Monohan’s estate sale.


Pioneering Draper's Meadows (Today’s Blacksburg, Va.) - 1749+ to 1753


Soon after this time, Burk moved again.  This time he joined some friends and as reported by Joseph A. Waddell: “The Ingleses for the first time encountered the Draper family, who had settled on the James River at Pattonsburg.  This family consisted of George Draper, his wife, and his children John and Mary.  While living at Pattonsburg, George Draper went out hunting, and was never heard of again.  About the year 1749, the Ingles, Drapers, Adam Harman, Henry Leonard, and James Burke, removed from the James River and settled near the present town of Blacksburg in Montgomery County. They called the place Draper’s Meadows.  William Ingles and Mary Draper were married in 1750, and Bettie Robertson in 1754.  The marriages no doubt took place in Staunton, as there was no minister nearer Draper’s Meadows authorized to perform the ceremony.”  

“Annals of Augusta County, Virginia,” by Joseph A. Waddell, 1885


The settlement at Draper’s Meadows and their homes were built upon the present site and lands of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute (Virginia Tech) in Blacksburg at the west edge of the city.   Hale goes on to say that John Draper later purchased another piece of land in 1765 that could cause confusion with Draper’s Meadows.   This later New River land is still called Draper and Draper Valley, and is about 2.5 miles southwest of Pulaski, Pulaski County, Virginia and about 25 miles WSW from Blacksburg.   Draper is separated from Draper Mountain by Draper Valley Road.  About 5 miles east is a small stream called Burk’s Run.

“TransAlleghany Pioneers,” by John Hale, 1886   


Marriage of Mary Burk, Daughter of James Burk


An unidentified source on Family History Library reported Joseph Morphew married Mary Burk, daughter of James Burk, on 9 October 1749 in Bedford County.  Both the first name of Joseph Morphew and the location are now disputed, but the exact marriage date is still worthwhile.    


James Burk Marries a Second Time


Between 29 May and 29 August 1751,* James Burk married the second time to Lucretia Griffith, widow of Methusalem Griffith, who died in 1748/49.  Methusalem and Burke had worked the same road tithable several years before.  It is not known where the marriage took place.  However on August 29, 1751, Augusta County records state that Lucretia Griffith was administrator for her husband and had since married James Burk.

                   * Augusta County Order Book II, page 579 and Book III, page 169.


1751 August 19: James Burk took William Brookshire to court for debt. *   Brookshire "II" had or would become the husband of Honora Burk, his daughter.

                   * Augusta County Order Book III, page 170. 


Move to Burk's Garden About 1753


1753 May 18: James Burk deeded 117 acres to James Bane, brother to his first wife, part of a tract patented to Burk 20th September 1748, on Goose Creek, otherwise known as the Roanoke River. 


During this year 1753, James Burk and stepson Morris Griffith were reported in Burkes Garden, 30 miles west of the Draper site or 50 miles from Blacksburg.   Burk had moved to Burkes Garden about June 1753 with several other settlers.  This land had been surveyed and was owned by James Patton who was killed by Indians at Draper's Meadows in 1755.


Indians Destroy Draper's Meadows - 1755


During the next two years, Indian raids worsened:  “As a result of Braddock’s July 1755 defeat on the Monongehela with 777 killed and wounded at the hands of French and Indians, the whole frontier of western Virginia was thrown open to the ravages of Indians, who crossed the Alleghanies and pushed into Augusta County, the lower valley and New River settlements, torturing and murdering men, women and children....  Not withstanding that Draper’s Meadows settlement was far from the Ohio, and apparently safe for any probability of attack from any quarter, and although these settlers must have been aware that war was then being waged by the Indians against the whites, they took no reasonable precaution for their safety, but on Sunday, 8 July 1755, the day before Braddocks defeat on the Monongahela, they permitted themselves to be surprised by a band of marauding Shawnees from the north of the Ohio, who killed, wounded, and captured every person present.  Killed were Colonel James Patton, Mrs. George Draper, Casper Barrier, a child of John Draper, and James Call.  Wounded were Mrs. William Ingles, Mrs. John Draper, and Henry Leonard captured.”  

“History of Middle New River Settlements” by David E. Johnston, 1906


What Happened to the Burks During These Years


1755: The Preston Register mentioned in 1755 the following:  “__ Burk, Holston River, prisoner who escaped.”  This person may be our Burk or one of his sons.  In either case, it probably gave Burk sufficient cause for alarm.  This Preston Register also records on August 12, 1755:  “Morris Griffith, (of) Vause’s Fort, prisoner, escaped.” 

“Preston Register” of persons killed, wounded, or taken prisoner by Indians, possibly kept by Captain William Preston


1755 May 21: Augusta County Court records mention James Burk to be a plaintiff versus defendant Ervin Patterson in a lease dispute.  The two agreed upon resolution and the suit was dismissed.  


“Burk had moved with his family into the Garden in 1754, cleared up some land, and planted a crop, including potatoes, and in the fall of 1755 was driven out on account of fear of Indians and left his crop of potatoes in the ground which Lewis’s men found the next spring and appropriated.  Burk had killed a large number of deer, elk, and bear, and had tanned a number of hides, which he took with him when he left in the fall of 1755.” 

“History of Middle New River Settlements” by David E. Johnston, 1906


Indian Problems in Burke's Garden 1755-1760


 “On his way out with his family, he camped one night in old hunter’s cabin near what is now Sharon Springs in the new County of Bland, Virginia.  The Indians followed him, and on their way killed two hunters in their camp.  On approaching Burk’s cabin and seeing several horses, and the tanned hides rolled up in the cabin, they came to the conclusion that there were too many people for them to attack and contented themselves with cutting of the throat on one of Burk’s horses.” 

“History of Middle New River Settlements” by David E. Johnston, 1906


Captain William Preston was now empowered to hunt down these Indians and wrote in his diary of the Sandy Creek Expedition (with spelling improvements, etc):  “Sunday, February 15th, 1756, Old James Burk brought word that Robert Looney was killed, nigh Alex Sawyers, and he had himself one horse shot and five taken away by Shawnee Indians and that he thought from the signs he saw that they were not above four Indians that had done ye above.  Upon which there was immediately a Council of War held and it was concluded to send a detachment of 60 white men and 40 Indians out tomorrow morning (as scouts).  About noon, the Reverend Mr. Brown gave us a military sermon, with his text being 2nd book of Samuel, chapter VX, which was excellently treated upon and at night our Indians danced a grand war dance.”


Preston continues: “February 24th:  Crossed two mountains and arrived at Burkes Garden.  Had plenty of potatoes which soldiers gathered in the deserted plantations.... Burkes Garden is a tract of land of 5000 or 6000 acres, as rich and fertile as any I ever saw, as well watered with many beautiful streams, and is surrounded with mountains almost impassible.”   Preston was mentions: “April 27, 1758, William Burk, South Branch (of Shenandoah River) was killed.” *   This Burk lived about 125 miles away, and there is little evidence to suggest a relationship with James Burk. 

   * From the “Preston Register”


1758 September 1: James Burk was paid for 108 days of Augusta County military service with Colonel William Preston or Colonel John Buchanan and may have served as a scout for hostile Indians.  Burks remaining time in Virginia was now short. 


A New Home in Rowan County, North Carolina 1761+


1760 July 1:  James “Birk” and wife Lucretia, of Cumberland County, North Carolina, deeded to Thomas Walker of Albemarle County for 40 pounds, 100 acres on the south side of Goose Creek adjacent William Campbell’s line.  The document was received 1 July 1761 by Thomas Walker who paid 40 pounds.  Witnesses were William Ingles, James Bane, John Hawkins, and John Buchanan.  This document was delivered by Thomas Madison on 11 March 1763.   A number of these names were area leaders.   This deed states they were now living in Cumberland County, North Carolina.  Record searches in Cumberland County have been negative.


1761 December 21 - Rowan County, North Carolina:   James Burk was deeded 440 acres in Rowan County on both sides of Joseph’s Creek and extended north along the west bank of the Yadkin River.    This creek is now thought to be Forbush Creek in present-day eastern Yadkin County.


1765 October 10:   Men presenting claims for wolfs, panthers, and cats at the Rowan County Court included James Burk, which could be either Senior or Junior.


1766 October 17: Rowan County court ordered a road to be laid out from Shallow Ford upon the Yadkin River to the Ford, called the Etkin Fork.  Names for the road jury included Robert Forbush and James “Bourk.”     .


1768 - Rowan County tax list in Gideon Wright's District (probably Yadkin – Wilkes County area) includes:

Benjamin Birk

Joseph Murphey and John England are next to each other. 

                     (Silas Morphew married John England’s daughter Elizabeth in 1775).  

James Burk, Joseph Burk and James Burk (Jr.) next to each other and within only one name between Joseph Murphey and John England.   On the same page is                     is “Daniel Boon.”   All entries are as spelled.  


~1770 Rowan County tax:   Another book of tax lists was found, without a date.  1770 may be the exact date, or the book may be a copy of other 1768 tithable lists, but this has different names. 


 Joseph Burk, James Burk Sr., James Burks Jr., and Daniel Boone.   Joseph Murphy

                     is not here and there are now two James Murpheys.               


1770 February 15 - Rowan County Court:   Ordered that Thomas Mears, Valentine Vanhouser, James Sheppard, Gideon Wright, James Glenn, Abrah Creson, Robert Forbus, James Burk, Michael Baker, as a jury to lay out a road from Mr. Harts store, crossing the Yadkin to Yallow Banks Ford and for thence to Edward Rigs new cut road, from Allen Sawmill to the Shallow Ford at Smith’s cabin by the nearest and best way...Hezikiah Wright from John Sneed’s Store to Ben Souls Creek, Jobe Feltorn from then to the head of Forbushes Creek, John Allin from thence to Smith’s Cabin. 


          This entry is not clear if the reference is to James Sr. or Jr.   Rowan County spun off into smaller counties with Surry in 1771, Guilford in 1771, Wilkes in 1777, Burke in 1777, and much later Yadkin in 1850.  


1771 Surry County tax:   Benjamin, Joseph, and James Burk, Jr., but no Murphys or Morphews. 


1774 Surry County tax and partial for 1775:

Captain Martin Armstrong's District: Benjamin Burk, John Burk, and James Burk Captain Samuel Freeman's District:  Joseph Burk


          This John Burk couldn't be the grandson of James Burk, Jr. who was born 23 July 1760.  So who is this John Burk?  See discussion at the end of this chapter.


Burks in the American Revolutionary War


The last years of James Burk were interwoven with the American Revolution and were of great tragedy.  Although Burk himself took no active part (he was nearly 65), a list of sides that his children took is quite revealing:


 “Tory Loyalists:” Captain Benjamin Burk, Joseph Burk, Naomi Burk Pepper,

             John Griffith (son-in-law)          .


“American Patriots:” Ensign James Burk, Jr. and his son Private John Burk; Honor Burk Brookshire - her children; Sarah Burk Wilson - her-son-law Capt. John Lucas.


"Needs more research:" Mary Burk Morphew   


           James Burk, Jr. joined and died in service for the American Army.  For his services, his son John received a square mile of land in Surry County, North Carolina after the war. 


The fortunes of the Tory side of Burk’s family were even more tragic.  Benjamin Burk became a Captain of an irregular Tory militia made up of farmer-soldiers from Surry County, North Carolina.  On October 14, 1780, a band of 300 Tories left from Surry County to join up with Cornwallis at Charlotte, North Carolina.  Their leader was their friend, Gideon Wright.  Gideon had been an early settler of the area and was instrumental in getting Surry County’s first courthouse built.  The Patriots learned about the Tory movement and laid an ambush at Shallow Ford, some 4 miles southeast of where the Burks lived.  After the battle, the American Colonel Parsley reported:  “Fourteen of the enemy were found dead on the ground among which were Captains Bryan and Burk....  The Tories escaped, all being well mounted.”  Legend has it that Captain Benjamin Burk was killed with a sword by his nephew-in-law Captain George Pearis at Shallow Ford.


Joseph Burk did not fare better.  Patriot soldier William Benson sheds some light on Joseph.  Benson stated he was present and took part in the capture of Mark Adkins and a Joseph Burk of Surry for harrying William Griffin of Surry.  They had driven away Griffin’s cattle and then butchering them for Tory use.  He states that Adkins and Burk were taken prisoner Benas camp in Henry County, Virginia where the Patriots planned on hanging the pair.  If the hanging took place, then this is another Joseph Burk because our subject reportedly drowned in New River, Montgomery County, Virginia in 1785, long after the war ended.


Will and Estate of James Burk



In The Name of God, Amen


I, James Burk of the County of Surry and State of North Carolina, Planter being in a low State of health, I weak of Body but of Good, Perfect, & Sound Mind, & Memory, knowing the Mortality of my Body and that it is Appointed for all Men once to Die: Do make & Ordain this my Last Will & testament.


But Principals I first of all I recommend my Soul into the hands of the Almighty God who gave it, in sure & certain hopes that it will be restored again at the Day of General Resurrection and my Body to the Graves to be Interred with a Decent Christian Burial at the Direction of my Executors; And as touching such worldly good wherein my God has been pleased to bless me with in my Life time I Will & Dispose in the following Manner & form:


In primis, I give leave and bequeath unto my Beloved Wife Lucretia Burk the whole and sole management, possession, rights & profits of all my Estate both Real and __(words lost in fold of paper) __ life at the end of which all remaining after paying such legacies as I shall hereafter give to be all & every article sold at auction and equally divided amongst all my children, viz between Mary Murphew, Sarah Wilson, Joseph Burk, Naomi Pepper.  Provided that if my Negro wench Silvia should hence forth bring a living child on then the limits of my said Wife's life that said child after my said Wife, deceased shall be the property of her said Wife's daughter Lucretia Wilson. *


Item:  I give and bequeath unto my Grandchild Thomas Burk, a Negro Girl, born of the Body of my Negro Silvia to be delivered to him when he shall arrive at the age of twenty years old before which time said Negro Girl name Hannah shall be kept together with the rest of my Estate, in my said Wife's hand & after her decease in the executors until the boy's age as before mentioned.  Likewise on the same conditions & directions, I give unto my Grand Daughter, Honora Burk my Negro Boy Ned to be delivered to her at the age of sixteen.


Item:  I leave unto my Son in Law, William Brookshire the sum of ten pounds good & lawful money as in old times.


Item:  I leave unto my Daughter in Law, Mary Burk the sum of Five Pounds like money.  Also to her children now living to each of them five Pounds, Viz – to Josiah Burk, Samuel Burk, Elizabeth Burk, John Burk & Benjamin Burk. 


And whereas by the disobedience & unduly fullness of my eldest son James Burk, I have had just cause to deny him or his heirs any part or portion of my living take unto the other children.  I leave unto him or them only the sum of five shillings. 


Item:  I leave unto Sally Colman, my Grand Daughter one Ewe & lamb.


I appoint & constitute Samuel Pepper of Botetourt County in Virginia & (nearly unreadable but reported) Moses Baker of this county to be my lawful executors.  And I do herby disallow, revoke & __ all former wills & testaments by me here to for made.  Allowing , Confirming & ratifying this to be my last Will and Testament in witness whereof I have here unto set my hand & seal the fourth day of November Anno Domini 1782.  Signed, Sealed, Delivered, Pronounced, & Declared by the said James Burk to be his Last Will & Testament in the Presence of Us – Andrew Speer, John Thos. Longino – Juriat.  Signed James (his mark "I") Burk.  Entered in February 1783 Court.  (Surry County Wills, Book 2, Page 1)


* Lucretia Wilson was the daughter of Methusalem Griffith + Lucretia Rees.  Daughter – Lucretia married James Wilson.  (courtesy of Marshel Roy Cunningham, e-mail of 21 June 2005.   



          In the will above, Thomas Burk, Honora Burk, Josiah Burk, Samuel Burk, Elizabeth Burk, John Burk, and Benjamin Burk "II" are children of Benjamin Burk who died at the Battle of Shallow Ford in 1780.    The 1797 will of Thomas Burk confirms the names of these children - see his will below.   Daughter-in-law Mary Burk is Benjamin Burk's widow.  Sally Colman is the daughter of James Morphew + Mary Burk (daughter of James Burk).  Several gedcoms have suggested some of the grandchildren belong to a missing son named John Burk.  All the grandchildren in James Burk's will are now accounted for and do NOT include any from a John Burk.   


Final Years and Lucretia Burk


James Burk, Sr., died in 1783 at old Surry County, N.C. in what is now Yadkin County, N.C.  The revolution had torn his family apart.  His wife Lucretia Burk now shows up in the 1784 and 1786 Surry tax lists.  This writer thinks she died in 1786 about the time of the October estate sale.


1782 Surry County Taxable on Property:

Captain Humphries District: John Burk: 3 horses and mules; 2 cattle; 100 acres

Ayres District: James Burke: 2 horses/mules; 16 cattle, 220 acres on Forbush Creek in Ayres District.    Joseph Burke: 4 horses/mules; 9 cattle, 220 acres on Joseph's Creek in Ayres District.    Mary Burke: 1 horse/mule; 7 cattle, 840 acres on Forbush Creek in Ayres District.

Captain Hickman's District: Samuel Burk: single, 1 horse/mule, 200 acres on Snow Creek.


1784 Surry County Taxable Property: John Burk 200 acres, Lucretia Burk 200 acres; Mary Burk 840 acres; Riland(?) Burk; Samuel Burk.


1786 Surry County Taxable Property:

Capt. Willis District: (1) Benjamin Burk, no acres taxable and two entries away is (2) William Burk, 250 acres; also (3) John Burk 300 acres 2 polls

Capt. Humphries District: John Burk, 200 acres

Capt. Carson's District: (1) Lucretia Burk 200 acres, 0 polls (2) Silas Murphey 1 poll.


          This writer does not know who the parents might be for (1) 1786 Benjamin Burk, (2) 1786 William Burk, and (3) John Burk, 1774, 1782, 1784, 1786.


          Four children of James Burk, Sr. with their grandchildren settled in Montgomery County, Virginia.  They included (1) wife of Joseph Burk, (2) Sarah Burk Wilson, (3) children of Benjamin Burk, and (4) Naomi Burk Pepper.       


Children of James Burk + Mary Bane


          Names and birth dates for the children need greater accuracy.   Les Tate helps us with better birth date estimations and his dating is ear-marked by "^".   James Burk's will named grandchildren Honora Burk and Thomas Burk without stating who their parents were.   Now, there is proof that they are children of Benjamin Burk.    

                   ^ Email courtesy Les Tatum, 1 April 2010


 (I). Mary Burk was born about 1731 and is thought to be the oldest daughter.^  Mary married James Morphew on 9 October 1749 in western Virginia.  Sally Coleman, who was in James Burk's will, was Mary Burk Morphew's daughter, Sarah (Sally) Morphew Coleman.   See next generation in Chapter 2D and 2E.


(II). Honoura Burk was born estimated ~1733^ and possibly died between 1775 – November 1782.   Her name may be Honora or Honour.  She must be dead by the time of her father's will, which does not mention her, but does mention "my son-in-law, William Brookshire."  William Brookshire was born ~1730 and is still alive at the time of 1782 Burk will.   There is a William Brookshire I, II, III.  Our William should be "II," but separating them is not easy.              


Locations and Sightings for the Brookshires.


1751 August 29 - Augusta County, Virginia Court:   James Burk took William Brookshire to court for debt.   Brookshire "II" had or would become the husband of Honora Burk, his daughter.

                   Augusta County Order Book III, page 170.

~1756:   William and Honora Brookshire moved to Randoph or Anson County, North Carolina about 1756 or so.*

1759 and 1770 Rowan County tax:   Mannering Brookshire and William Brookshire.     

1779 Randolph County, North Carolina tax:   Jesse Brookshire, Mary Brookshire, Swift Brookshire, and Mannering Brookshire Sr. & Jr. are recorded individually on the 1779 Randolph County, North Carolina tax list. 

1782: William Brookshire, "son-in-law" is named in James Burk's will.


Children of William Brookshire + Honour Burk*

          Names and dates of birth for the children vary somewhat:


(1). Mary Brookshire 8 August 1751

(2). Jesse Brookshire 16 January 1755

(3). William Brookshire “III” 30 December 1756 to 1836 who married Mary Ann __ and lived in Wilkes County, North Carolina and buried in the waters of the Kerry Scott reservior,* William was a private in the North Carolina infantry and was granted a pension.*

(4). Sarah Brookshire, after 1757

(5). Jemima Brookshire 17 February 1758

(6). James Brookshire 19 February 1760

(7). Honour Brookshire 21 December 1762

(8). Mannering Brookshire 10 January 1768 was Cavalry Lieutenant in the North Carolina Militia from Randolph County and was granted a pension.  On 1790 Rowan County, NC tax list with no land

(9). Benjamin Brookshire 9 March 1770; On 1796 Rowan County, NC tax list with no land

(10). Melvina Brookshire 1 April 1773

(11). Levin Brookshire 12 May 1775.

                   *Courtesy of Robert Emery, emails of 4 and 6 January 2009


(III). Sarah Burk (born about 1735^ and was still living in 1782) married about 1757 at Bedford County, Virginia to Samuel Wilson, Sr. (born ~1733 and died 1804/06 Tennessee).   Sarah Wilson is listed in James Burk’s 1783 will.    


          Samuel Wilson is hard to trace because of others with the same name.  There was a Captain Samuel Wilson who was killed at the Battle of Point Pleasant in 1774, who lived in western Augusta County (today's Highland County).  Charles Johnson points out he belonged to another clan, + and had married Mary Babb. *    In addition, there appears to be another Samuel Wilson living near the Forks of the James River in Botetourt/Rockcastle County area.  This one is so poorly understood that more info is needed. 

+ Courtesy of Charles Johnson, e-mail of 21 January 2006 and 5 February 2006.   

*SAR Revolutionary War Graves Register, 2000 Edition, by Progeny Publishing on CD


          Charles Johnson believes Samuel Wilson + Sarah Burk lived in Montgomery County and/or Rockbridge County, Virginia.   Kegley^ narrows this further by stating the daughter of James Burk married Samuel Wilson and lived on Ingles Mill Branch (most probably today's Wilson Creek**).  Wilson Creek flows into the North Fork of the Roanoke River, a few miles southeast of today's Blacksburg, Montgomery County (old Botetourt before 1776/77), Virginia.  Both Samuel Wilson, Sr. and Jr. cannot be identified in military musters and a question is raised if they might be Quakers. 


Probable sightings for our Samuel Wilson + Sarah Burk:


Pre-1770:   Location not yet determined.  Bedford County, Virginia?    

1770 Botetourt County (now Montgomery County):    John Robinson, Abraham Chrisman and Samuel Wilson to view the road from William Robinson's North Fork to the head waters of Catawba. ^        

1770 Botetourt County:   Samuel Wilson was appointed Constable for the North Fork of Roanoke. ^

1771 Botetourt County:   Samuel Wilson was deeded 262 acres on the North Fork of the Roanoke River. ^

1774 (13 April):   John Robinson, Samuel Wilson, and David Robinson to review and report (about)...a road from Jacob Brown's old place - mouth of Den Branch - down the North Fork to Isaac Taylor's - Fork of Roanoke River. ^

1779 Montgomery County:   Henry Watterson and Samuel Wilson are appointed surveyors of the road from Brown's on the North Fork to Peter Rieffs, with tithables payable from residents on Bradshaws Creek, the Den and Inglish (Ingles) Creek. ^ 

1782 Montgomery County land tax and personal property tax: Samuel Wilson is not on either one.  What happened to him and his son?

1783 (12 June) Montgomery County:   Samuel Wilson deeded 41 acres to William Smith on Ingles Mill Creek, a branch of Roanoak River, where Wilson now lives.^   

1783 (27 June):   Samuel Wilson deeded John Lucas (his son-law), for 5 shillings 47 acres on Ingles Mill Creek, branch of the Roanoak River. ^

1794 (4 February) Montgomery County:  Deed from Samuel Willson of Montgomery County, Virginia to William Heavins of same county for 140 pounds, 100 acres in Montgomery County on Ingle's Creek, a branch of the Roanoak, adjacent John Davis and crossing creek.  (Signed) Sam ("S") Wilson.  No witnesses.  Montgomery County March Court 1795. (B/2nd series of pages 184)

1795 Montgomery County:   Samuel Wilson deeded 100 acres on Ingles Creek to William Haven. ^

No date:   Charles Johnson added that later both Samuel Wilson Sr. and Jr. accompanied their daughter, Theodocia Wilson Johnson to Sevier County, Tennessee. +  

1804/06:   One researcher believes Samuel Wilson, Senior died there between 1804 and 1806. +  

1809 Montgomery County:   Kegley states John Erhart purchased the old Wilson house which was triangular in shape with a rock chimney at one angle and replaced it with a four room log house.^


Children of Samuel Wilson + Sarah:


(1). Mary “Polly” Wilson (1 January 1758 to 17 May 1843, buried in Lucas Cemetery) married on 15 February 1777 Montgomery County, Virginia to Captain John Lucas (15 July 1749 to 19 April 1836) of Montgomery County.  According to Kegley, John Lucas acquired the old Ingles home place on Ingles Mill Creek, married Polly Wilson, daughter of Samuel Wilson of Wilson's Creek and became a prominent pioneer in old Montgomery County. ^   Captain John Lucas has an American Revolution pension application naming his three children: Theodocia Lucas, Samuel Wilson Lucas, and Susan Lucas. *** 


1773 Botetourt County Tithables taken by Benjamin Estill: John Lucas - 1

1774 Fincastle County: John, William, and Charles Lucas were part of 11 Minute Men under Captain Thomas Burk to protect William Preston at his Smithfield Plantation near Blacksburg.   Also, militia of Captain Michael Woods from Rich Creek Mountain met and assisted them there.  ^^

1776:  Captain John Lucas, commander of the Smithfield militia was ordered to defend the lead mines and Fort Chiswell from Indians.  ^^

1777:  Captain John Lucas and his company captured the local Tory troublemakers Duncan O'Gullion, John McDonald, and others near Walker's Creek in today's Montgomery County.  ^^

1780: John Lucas and his company fought at the Battle of Shallow Ford, Surry County, North Carolina under Major Joseph Cloyd. ^^      


(2). Samuel Wilson, Jr: Unable to trace. 


(3). Theodocia Wilson (15 November 1773), married in 1794 to Benjamin Johnson (Johnston), son of Moses Johnson.  They migrated to Sevierville, Sevier County, Tennessee, and Benjamin died in 1804 at the age of 30. +      


+ Courtesy of Charles Johnson, e-mail 21 January 2006)

** Concerning Ingles Mill Creek being today's Wilsons Creek: Library of Virginia Land Grants has a record of a 20 July 1780 land grant to John Robinson "on a small branch of Ingles Mill Creek called Cedar Run, a branch of Roanoke."   Today's Wilsons Creek also has a small branch called Cedar Run and this suggests that the two creeks are the same. 

^ Kegley's Virginia Frontier by F.B. Kegley, 1938, pgs 195, 196, 397, 584, 585, 587, 590, 591, 592, 620, 620

^^ William Preston and the Allegheny Patriots, by Patricia Givens Johnson, 1976/1992, pages 122, 186, 246, 265.

*** Revolutionary War Records by Patrick G. Wardell, Volumes 1-6, Heritage Books Archives on CD.


(IV) James Burk (Jr. or “II”) was born about 1737 and was died August 1776 while in patriot military service during the American Revolution.  Middle name has been reported to be Edward, but source/proof doesn't exist.  He married Amey __., and little is known about her.   After James Burk (Jr.) died, Amey remarried about 1777 to Samuel Tate and had one child, Samuel Tate, born ~1780.  His son John Burk was born 23 July 1760, per his pension application.    


          Names of the children of James and Amey Burk are poorly understood, but they had a son John Burk who was born 23 July 1760.  Only one heir was named to James Burk's military land entitlement, but there may be several others.  An undated record exists of "Benjamin and Amy, children of James Bourk, deceased, (bound) to Francis Reynolds, Wilkes County, North Carolina." *    In addition, a 26 May 1784 inventory of the estate of Robert Walker, deceased had certificates due from Benjamin Burk and John Burk (listed next to each other). **

* Email courtesy Peggy Morphew, 31 April 2010.  Her source: North Carolinian, Volume ?, page 113

** Surry County, North Carolina Wills 1771 – 1827, by Jo Ann Linn, 2007.       


          Most of the following details for James Burk “II” and his son John is courtesy of Les Tate, emails of 9 & 11 October 2008, 31 March & 14 April 2010.    Thank you, Les!   John's Revolutionary War pension application greatly expands these obscure years.  Les also mentions that John spelled his surname as "Burk."


Locations and Sightings for James Burk “II” and his son John Burk


1760 July 23:   James Burk “II” lived in what is now Rockbridge County, Virginia when his son John reported he was born there on 23 July 1760.  

1768, 1770 Rowan County tithables (tax):   "James Burk, Jr."

1771 Surry County tax:   "James Burk, Jr."   Surry County was established 1771 from Rowan.

1772 Surry County tax:   James Burk x 2  

1776 March:   James Burk “II” enlisted in the American Revolution with his 15 year old son John for a three month tour in the Wilkes County, North Carolina "light horse" mounted service under the command of Captain Jesse Walton.***  James was an ensign for his company.  Their tour was spent in Rowan, Surry, and Wilkes County North Carolina. 


An aside note for 1776: Colonels Jesse Walton and Benjamin Cleveland (Surry County, N. C.) defended the Watauga and Nolachucky settlements from Cherokee attacks.  Later in 1778, this same Walton helped to establish Jonesborough, the first town in future Tennessee, then went on to help locate and convene Tennessee's very first court house in Washington County in May 1779. 


          According to John Burk, he was sent home by his father at the end of the 3 month enlistment.  In response to questions in the pension application, John stated "I expect my father got a discharge for each of us."  However, in his narrative about his service, John indicated James discharged John, then his father died in August 1776 while in service.  Our informant, Les Tate, could not find James' military service record.


          What is known about James Burk's military service is this: "John Burke," heir to James Burke “II” received 640 acres of Surry County N.C. land from the State of North Carolina, as a grant entitled to his father for 84 months of service in the Continental Line.

Courtesy of George Gordon, email of 16 September 2005, from a D.A.R. Application and "Roster of Soldiers from North Carolina in the American Revolution," by N.C. Daughters of the American Revolution


          John Burk's pension application says 84 months of service, but must be incorrect.  Revolutionary War records were filed in Washington, D.C. and were burned by the British during the War of 1812-1814.   However, 640 acres given James Burk, Jr. was the amount of land given commissioned ensigns and lieutenants and his son John stated his father was an ensign.


1778/79 Washington County, North Carolina/Tennessee:    John stated that he "remained with the family" following his father's death until 1779 when the family "removed to the west" on the waters of the "Nole Chucke (Nolichucky River) in Washington County, North Carolina, which is now in Tennessee.   This moved included Samuel + Amey Burk Tate, but no one stayed very long.

1779:   John Burk served as an Indian spy on 3-4 short tours of 10-30 days each under Captain Amos Bird.  In 1780, he served again as a Tory spy in South Carolina under Captain William Richie for 2-3 weeks.  Next, he returned to North Carolina for a 3 month tour under Captain Samuel Johnson, but was never attached to any troops and was released after 2-3 week. 

1779 Wilkes County:   Samuel Tate applied for 3 parcels in Wilkes County land in 1779, but never completed the transaction.

1781 June 6 - Wilkes County, North Carolina:   John Burk married "Alise Sebastin" (Mrs. Alcy Robinson Sebastian) in Wilkes County with Henry Carter bondsman and George Wheatley witness (county record).  A Sebastian researcher stated he has a 1972 genealogical book giving her maiden name as Alise Sebastian, sister or daughter of Benjamin Sebastian.  A Texas DAR application listed her as Mrs. Alcy Robinson Sebastian and gives her birth and death dates. 


          According to Les Tate, John Burk lived on the Yadkin River in what is today's Wilkes County, North Carolina


1781 August:   John Burk was drafted for a 3 months tour under Captain Alexander Gordon (recorded on Wilkes County tax lists 1772-1779), and was under the command of Colonel Francis Locke.  His unit joined the army of General Nathanial Greene, Commander of the Southern Division in South Carolina.  They passed through Camden, Columbia and participated in the Battle of Eutaw Spring on 8 September 1781.  Here, John was part of two small battalions from North Carolina under a French Colonel whom he misnamed, but was Marquis Malmedy.  After the battle, he marched back to Salisbury in charge of English prisoners under Captain Gordon and was discharged.  

1786 Surry County, North Carolina:   Les Tate states James Burk's 1786 estate inventory and sale in 1786 do not belong to James Burk, Sr., but to his son, James Burk, Jr.   The executors of James Senior's 1782 will were Moses Baker and brother-in-law Samuel Pepper.  The 1786 inventory and estate sale indicate that Amey Burk and Samuel Tate were administrators.   This Amey Burk is thought to be his widow.       



1786 Estate Sale & Inventory for James Burk, Jr. “II”, deceased


The return of the estate sale of James Burk 28 October 1786:  Buyers were Samuel Wright, Capt. John Hamlin, John Burke, Starling Rose, Cornelius Sale, Acquila Greer, Anny (Amey?) Burk, Joseph Herndon, Benjamin Greer, John Greer, Mary Burke, Daniel Vannoy, James Mitchel, Isaac Walker, William Crane, Thomas Jones, Martin Adams, James Reynolds, Francis Hardgrove, Charles Walker, William Smith, James Ray, Jinkin Reynolds, Thomas Prater.  Amount: 205:10:10 pounds, returned by Amey Burke, admin. Rec. May court 1787.


Inventory of the estate of James Burk, deceased:  Ten pounds to Samuel Taite for

keeping one orphan girl for 1½  years, and one orphan boy for four years.  Returned by William Meredith and William T. Lewis and recorded in August court 1786.


          August 1786 Surry County Court: Inventory of Estate of James Burk, deceased, returned with Samuel Tate, administrator in "right of his wife." *


          Comment: Who is Anny Burk?  Poorly scripted handwriting could easily make Amey look like Anny.   The last entry indirectly indicates Samuel Tate is now married to Amey Burk.


          * Email courtesy Peggy Morphew, 31 April 2010.  Her source: Surry County Will Book, Volume 2, page 112.        


Specs on John Burk “I” (1760 to 1836), son of James Burk “II”


Born: 23 July 1760 Rockbridge County, Virginia per Revolutionary War Pension Application

Married 6 June 1781 Wilkes County, North Carolina to "Alise Sebastin" (Mrs. Alcy Robinson Sebastian) with Henry Carter bondsman and George Wheatley witness (county record).

Died 1 February 1836 Wayne County, Indiana and buried at Elkhorn Cemetery, Richmond, Wayne County, Indiana (per 

Death reported in Richmond Palladium, Saturday 6 February 1836, page 3, column 4 – MRL Newspaper Microfilm Collection – not seen.  MRL = Morrisson-Reeves Library, Wayne County, Indiana.

Father: James Burk “II” (~1737 to August 1776) + mother Amey __.  Revolutionary  War soldier.


Details on John Burk “I” beginning 1787


1787:  North Carolina State Census for Wilkes County indicates John Burk's family had one male 21-60; 3 males less 21 or 60+, and 4 females.  Two entries away is Francis Reynolds who has one male 21-60, 4 males 21 or 60+, _ females.  Reynolds had taken on two other Burk children.

1795: Patricia Givens Johnson states “In 1795, (John Burk) moved from Wilkes County, North Carolina to Kentucky, and lived there until 1811 when he moved to Wayne County, Indiana where he lived till death, 1 February 1836.”   An 1815 Indiana census (only final numbers survived) showed Wayne County had 1225 white males 21+ and a total of 6407 population.

Irish Burks of Colonial Virginia and New River by Patricia Givens Johnson, 1992

1799 to 1810 Jessamine County tax: John Burk with 1 male adult 21+; 2 male adults 16-21 years of age 1801-1803; one male adult 16-21 1804, 1806-1808, and no slaves.   Not on 1809 tax record, but instead is: James Burk with 1 male adult 21+.   1799 is first year Jessamine tax records were saved.

1810 US Census of Jessamine County, Kentucky: John Burk: 2 males 10-16, 1 male 16-26, 1 male 45+, 1 female 16-26, 1 female 26-44.


          In review, 1810 census shows 2 males 10-16 (1794-1800).  These two could be John Burk “II”, born 22 February 1797 and Lewis Burk, 23 November 1799.   Next is 1 male and 1 female 16-26 (1784-1794) who could be Jessie Burk, Nov. 1791 and Mary Burk 18 April 1787).   The one female 26-44 should be Alsy Burk and the 1 male 45+ (>1765) should be John Burk “I,” ~1760.  Dorcas Burk is already 16 and may be living elsewhere.  This appears to be an excellent fit.  


1811 March – Wayne County, Indiana: “The first (Wayne County, Indiana) court was held 25 February 1811….   The next session of the court was held at the same place the next month.  A grand jury was for the first time impaneled in the county.  The names of the jurors were: (included) John Burk.”

History of Wayne County, Indiana, by Andrew White Young, 1872, p/80

1815 June – Wayne County Court Term: Henry Bryan versus Daniel Noland and 3 others.  Jury included John Burke.  Also: Thomas Endsly versus Stephan Williams.  Jury included John Burke. (Record Book 1/p30, 32)

1820 US Census of Wayne County, Indiana: John Burk – 2 males 16-25, 1 male and 1 female 45+,

1830 US Census of Wayne Township, Wayne County: John Burk – 1 male 60-69, 1 female 70-79

1811 - 1836 Wayne County, Indiana:   John applied for a Revolutionary War soldier's pension in 1818, but was turned down because the only paper he had was for a militia unit.  In 1831, Indiana General Assembly and its Governor helped John obtain his pension.  The pension application shows that he died 1 February 1836.  He is buried in the Elkhorn Cemetery. 


Children of John Burk “I” + Alcy Robinson Sebastian (i) to (vii):


(i). James Burk (born 13 November 1782 and died __), 1st son of John Burk ‘I” (1760-1836) + Alcy Robinson:    James Burk married Sallie Turner, daughter of Arthur Turner, a Baptist clergyman and Revolutionary soldier, according to Patricia Givens Johnson. *   A Revolutionary War pension application and will for Turner have not been found.  Turner’s wife is reported on to be Mary Ann Bartlett.  Johnson reports James Burk died in 1863* but where he was living after 1820 needs to be found.   He is difficult to trace in his later years as he seems to be moving about, possibly as a roving craftsman or merchant such as a blacksmith, carpenter, or trader.   Knowing his occupation could be useful.   Marriage location of Shelby County for his sons Arthur Turner Burk (m - 1827) and Edward A. Burk (m -1833) might suggest James Burk was in the area near Shelby County when they married.  

* Irish Burks of Colonial Virginia and New River, by Patricia Givens Johnson, 1992  


1799 to 1813 Woodford County, Kentucky tax: Arthur Turner.  In 1812 and 1813, tax indicates 42 acres on Grier’s Creek.   1810 US Census of Woodford County, Kentucky: Arthur Turner, 2 males and 1 female 0-10, 1 female 10-15, 2 females 16-25, 1 male 26-44, 1 male and 1 female 45+.   Turner not checked before 1799 or after 1814.   

1802 to 1804 Woodford County tax: In 1802 only, James Burk, 100 acres Green County on the Little B__ (possibly Barren).  1 white male 21+ and 2 horses.  On 1803-1804 Woodford County tax: James Burk/Burke, 1 white male 21+, 2 horses 1803, 1 horse 1804.   No acres owned.  

1804 May 7 – Woodford County: Marriage of James Burk to Sally Turner, and is signed by James Burk and her father Arthur A. Turner.   

“I recently obtained the marriage record for Sally Turner and James Burk.  It is dated 7 May 1804 in Woodford County, Ky.  It is signed by James Burk and her father, Arthur A. Turner….” - Joyce, 25 July 2001 at 7:04:53.   Unable to confirm, but timing is excellent and Turner lived in the county. has early Woodford County marriage records, but the Burk-Turner marriage is not one of them.  – JM.

On line – from Joyce.

1809 Jessamine County, Kentucky Tax: James Burk – one while male 21+ and 1 horse.

1810 US Census of Woodford County, Kentucky: James Burk, 2 males and 1 female 0-10 (1800-1810), 1 male 26-44 (1766-1784), 1 female 16-25 (1785-1794).  

1806-1808, 1810-1811, 1813 - Woodford County tax: James Burk (mostly) or Birk or Burke - 1 white male with 0 to 4 horses.  No owned acres.  Other Burks in Woodford County are  Jacob Burk or Birk from 1807 to 1817 - 1 white male, 6-7 horses, no owned acres; William Burk only 1806 - 1 white male, 0 horses, no acres; John Burke only 1811 - 1 white male, 1 horse, no acres.   Tax records for Burk not yet checked after 1836.

1816, 1817 and 1823 Henry County, Kentucky Tax: James Burk with 1 white male 21+ and 1 horse (twice). 

1820 US Census of Henry County, Kentucky: Jas. Burk, 5 males 0-10, 1 male 10-16, 1 female 16-26, 1 and 1 female 26-45.   Arthur Turner is also on this Henry County census and appears on its yearly tax 1814, 1817-1818.     In 1820 and 1821, there is a Hannah Turner on the tax records.   Turner probably died here.   

(questionable) 1822 Woodford County, Kentucky tax: James Burk - 1 white male 21+, also listed as one white male in town over 21+, no other data.

1826 Shelby County tax: James Burk with 1 white male 21+ and no horse.  (Shelby tax checked through the year 1837.) 

1830/1840 US Census – cannot find.

(probably) 1841 Daviess County, Kentucky tax: James Burk, 1 white male and no other stats.


Reported Children of James Burk (1782 to ?) and Sally Turner (1) to (4):

(1) to (3) From family trees


          1810 and 1820 census records indicate James Burk had 6 or 7 sons and 1 daughter.  There are several other Burks marrying in Shelby County during these years, but census ages for 2 of 3 do not match his children age ranges; a third couldn’t be found on census records.   The latter three may belong to Samuel Burk (or Burks), who is taxed in Shelby County 1814-1824 and who later possibly moved to Boone County, Indiana.    


(1). Arthur Turner Burk (reported ~1806/07 probably Woodford County, Kentucky to 12 August 1877), son of James Burk (1782), married in 1827 to Mary Ann Ellis in Shelby County.


1827 November 22 – Shelby County, Kentucky: Marriage of “Turner Burk” to Maryan Ellis (county record).

1828 Shelby County Tax: “Turner Burk,” 1 white male 21+ and 1 horse.

1836 to 1845 Daviess County, Kentucky tax:  Arthur T. Burk, Berk, Burke – 1 white male 21+ with up to 4 horses.  Eighty-five acres on Panther Creek in 1844 and 86 acres in Ohio County, Kentucky in 1845.  Usually no acreage is mentioned and is probably leasing or renting.  Tax not checked after 1845.

1840 US Census of Daviess County, Kentucky: Arthur T. Burk - 1 female 0-5, 1 male 5-9, 1 male and 1 female 10-14, 1 male and 1 female 30-39.  Two entries from Edward A. Burk

1850 US Census of Logan County, Illinois: Arthur T. Burk 44, Mary Ann Burk 43, Amanda L. Burk 10, Farselles Burk 8 male, William A. Clark 24, Susan A. Clark 21 (state of birth is light struck on census film).  Next on census is William A. Burk 20 Ky. and wife Roann Burk 21 Illinois.

1860 US Census of Sugar Creek Township, Logan County: A. T. Burke 53 Ky., Mary A. Burke 53 Ky., F. Burke 19 Ky., Sarah J. Clark 6 Illinois.

1870 US Census of Waynesville, Dewitt County, Illinois: Arthur T. Burk 63 Kentucky, farmer, Lydia Burk 56 Virginia, Eldera Clemens 9 Illinois, Margaret Bond 72, Pa. 


Children (incomplete) of Arthur Turner Burk and Mary Ann Ellis:


(i) William A. Burk (1830 Daviess County, Kentucky to 15 August 1863 Illinois), son of Arthur T. and Mary Ann Burk, (1782), married Ruann Clark.  Burk died in Civil War, 38th Illinois Infantry, from Logan County, Illinois. 


“Burk, James H., farmer, Section 21, Lawndale.  …born 3 September 1853 in Logan County (Illinois).  His father William A. Burk, who was born in Davis (Daviess) County, Kentucky in 1830 was one of the early settlers in Logan County, having come here when 18 years of age.  He was married in 1851 to Ruann Clark, who was born in 1829, in Illinois.  William A. Burk died 15 August 1863.  His son, James H. Burk owns a farm of 160 acres valued at $8000 and has 1 daughter, Mary who is married to U.C. Killebrew.”

History of Logan County, Illinois: Its Past and Present by Donnelley, Loyd and Company, 1878, page 519


(ii). Amanda L. Burk (1839/40)

(iii). Pharsellus Burk (1842/42 – male, spelling varies).  Illinois Civil War Soldier, 38th Illinois Infantry, Logan County, Illinois.


(2). Edward Anthony Burk (17 September 1811, probably Woodford County, Kentucky to 20 June 1873 Lathrop, Clinton County, Missouri, buried at Lathrop Cemetery, Lathrop, Clinton Co.), son of James Burk (1782), married Nancy King in 1833 Shelby County, Kentucky.


1833 December 25 - Shelby County, Kentucky: Marriage of “Edward A. Burk” to Nancy King (county record)

1836 Shelby County, Kentucky: Edward A. Burk with 1 white male 21+ and 3 horses.

1837 to 1844 Daviess County, Kentucky tax: Edward A. Burk, Burke, Berk.  In 1837 only, 374 acres on Panther Creek.  Otherwise, no land described.  Tax not checked after 1845.

1840 US Census of Daviess County, Kentucky: 3 males 0-5, 1 male 5-9, 1 male + 1 female 20-29.

1850 US Census of Logan County, Illinois: Edward A. Burk 39 Ly, Nancy Burk 37 Ky, William ?  Burk 15 Ky, James A. Burk 13 Ky, Ann Eliza Burk 7 Ky, Lewis Burk 5 Ky, Susan F. Burk 2 Ky, Nancy Burk 0 ill.

1860 US Census of Atlanta Township, Logan County, Illinois: E. A. Burk 49 Ky Gentleman, Nancy Burk 48 Ky, William T. Burk 26 Ky, James Burk 23 Ky, Ann E. Burk 17 Ky, Susan Burk 12 Ky, Nancy Burk 11 ill, Lewis Burk 14 Ky, M. Downey 24 Ohio, Delia Downey 21 ?, Harrison Downey 1 ill., Jane King 61 Va., Joseph King 25 Ohio.   Jane King may be Nancy Burk’s sister.

1870 US Census of Township 55, Range 30, Clinton County (P.O. Lathrop), Missouri: E. A. Burk 59, farmer Ky, Nancy Burk 57 Ky, Mary J. Burk 12 ill, Nancy M. Burk 21 ill, James E. Burk 8 ill. 


          Children of Edward A. and Nancy Burk per census records: (i) William T. Burk 1834/35, (ii) James A. Burk 1836/37, (iii) Ann Eliza Burk 1842/43, (iv) Lewis A. Burk (1844/45), (v). Susan F. Burk (1847/48), (vi) Nancy M. Burk (1849/1850).


(3 - probably) Bartlett James Burk or James Bartlett Burk (3 November 1818 Kentucky to 17 April 1905 Lathrop, Clinton County, Missouri and buried Lathrop Cemetery, Lathrop, Clinton County, Missouri).   Married 1st 1839 Butler County, Kentucky to Amanda James (~1817 to 1883) and 2nd 1885 to Violet Carter (October 1832 to 1912 Clinton Co. Missouri).   Parents (unnamed) of B. J. Burk were both born North Carolina, per 1900 census.   Connection to the Burk genealogy line appears to be the Bartlett name, wife of Arthur Turner.  More evidence would be useful.

1839 June 18 – Butler County, Kentucky: Marriage of Amanda James to B. J. Burk (county record).

1839 through 1850 – Butler County, Kentucky tax: Bartlett J. Burk/Burke or B. J. Burk/Burke, mostly with 1 lot in town – Morgantown, and usually with 1 horse.   No other Burk.  Tax record not checked after 1850.

1840 US Census of Butler County, Kentucky: Bartlett J. Burk, 1 male and 1 female 20-30.

1850 US Census of Butler County, Kentucky: B. J. Burk, 33 Taylor, Ky, Amanda Burk 33, Ky, James Burk 5 Ky, John Burk 3 Ky, Sarah Burk 1 Ky.

1860 US Census of Hopedale Township, Tazewell County, Illinois: Bartlett Burke 41 Physician, Ky, Amana Burke 40 Ky, James Burk 15 Ky, John Burke 13 Ky, Sarah Burke 11 Ky, William Burke 7 Ky, Henry Burke 5, Ky, Lucy Burke 3 Ky.

1885 August 16 – Clinton County, Missouri – Marriage of Bartlet J. Burk to Violet C. Cartter (county record).

1870 – 1900 US Census Lathrop Township, Clinton County, Missouri: as B. Burk, James B. Burk and Bartlett J. Burk, born November 1818. 


Children of Bartlett James and Amanda Burk per census records: (i) James Burk (1844/45), (ii) John Lewis Burk (1847-1918), (iii) Sarah E. Burk Moss (1849-1938), (iv) William Burk (1852/53), (v) Henry Burk (1854/55), (vi) Lucy Burk 1856/57).     


(4 - Possibly) Daniel S. Burk (1811/12 to ~1850) of Daviess County, Kentucky.   Lacks proof, but the only other Burks in Daviess County during 1842-1845 were Arthur T. Burk and Edward A. Burk.   James Burk preceded Daniel S. by one year in 1841 Daviess County.


1842-1845 Daviess County, Kentucky tax: Daniel S. Burk, or Burke with 1 white male 21+, 2 horses and 3 cattle.   No defined land.  Tax not checked after 1845. 

1850 US Census of Daviess County, Kentucky:  Dan’l S. Burke 34 Kentucky, Mary Burke 28 Virginia, George Burke 3 Ky., Charles Burke ½ Ky., Elizabeth Burke ½ Ky.

(consider) 1860 US Census of Owsley County, Kentucky: William Combs 38 Ky., Mary P. Combs 38 Va., George Burk 13, Elizabeth Burk 11 Ky., Henry Combs 13 Ky., Jasper Combs 11 Ky., Garrard Combs 6 Ky., Daniel M. Combs 4 Ky., James Combs 3/10 Ky.  Unexpected location raises questions. 


(ii). William Burk (13 February 1785 to May/July 1820), son of John Burk ‘I” (1760-1836) + Alcy Robinson:  William Burk married about 1807 to Nancy _ .    Nancy Burk was born ~1785 and died 11 November 1838, wife of William, at age 53 and buried at the Burke Cemetery, Oronoko Township, Berrien County, Michigan, per


(probably) 1806 – Woodford County, Kentucky - William Burk, 1 white male, 0 horses, no acres.  

(possibly) 1810 US Census of Shelby County, Kentucky: William Burk, 1 female under 10, 1 male and 1 female 26-45 (1765-1784).  He should be age 25 in this census.  Shelby County tax records for the year 1810 were lost, but remaining Shelby tax records from 1792 to 1829 never name any William Burk.  He was there briefly.

 ~1811 Wayne County: Grand Jury for George Holman included William Burk.

Memoirs of Wayne County and City of Richmond, Indiana, Henry Clay Fox, 1912, p/64

1812 Wayne County Militia: (includes) William Burk.

Indiana Compiled Census and Census Substitutes Index 1790-1890, as found on  Another record states “Lt. William Burk,” but does not list his home county. 

1812? - Wayne County, Indiana: From History of Wayne County: “Lazarus Whitehead, in 1806 settled on land now owned by John Sedgwick.  ‘William Burk,’ on land now a part of the farm of Stephen Farlow.  Wright Lancaster, from NC in 1808…. “    Wayne County was established 1810 from Dearborn + Clark Counties, and Indian Lands.  Dearborn County Courthouse burned in 1825 and many records were lost.

History of Wayne County, Indiana, by Andrew White Young, 1872

1815 June – Wayne County Court Term: US versus Joel Ferguson.  Jury included William Burke.  Same term, U.S. versus John Meek.  Jury included William Burke.  (Wayne County Record Book 1)

1815 Wayne County: John Jordan and wife Rachel deeded to Daniel Bonine, S34 T13 R1W.  Witnesses: George Holdman, William Birk.  Rec. 1820.

DB B/329-330 from Early Settlers of Indiana’s “Gore” 1803-1820 by Shirley Keller Mikesell, 2008.    Land is slightly NW of the village of Boston, Boston Township.

1818 April 27 – Wayne County: Land Patient to William Burk and William Reynolds, no acres mentioned but appears to be 160 acres, S20 T13N R1W, NW1/4.  Land Office at Cincinnati.  Not Cancelled.  Document Type – Credit Volume Patent. (accession #CV-0038-543, Document # None.)   Land is in the NW side of Boston Township, Wayne County. 

Bureau of Land Management, General Land Office Records, (BLM Glo Records).

1820 May 20 – Wayne County: Will of William Burk (worn, difficult to read) of Wayne County, Indiana (abstract).  Bequeath to my beloved wife Nancy Burk all the property of which I am possessed…to raise and maintain my children…if she should think proper to marry thereafter, then she is to receive one share with all my lawful children, named as follows: Florinda, Eliza, Aley,* Moses,** Mary,  R?___,*** and Betsy Burk.  Executors to be John Collings and John Burk, Jr.  Witnesses – Lewis Burk, William Watson, Henry Rich, John Banks and one name can’t read.  Entered date can’t read or cut off.  (WB 1/51)

* Microfilm name difficult to read, mostly likely Aley, less likely Alex.

** Name difficult to read, mostly likely Moses with long final vertical tail to “s.”

*** Name extremely worn and handwriting sloppy; one interpretation is “Rene,” but final letters end into a short broad line.  Consider name to be unreadable in the microfilm.

~1820 July 17 - Wayne County Probate Court:  Light struck and badly worn – can only read “Lewis Burk…three of them….  …John Collins, John Burk Executors.”  Date unreadable, but next probate following is dated 17 July 1820. (PB 1/22).  Later, Executor John Collins for William Burk, deceased, found estate in deficit and land had to be sold off, still leaving the estate with a final debt.  Wife’s name and children are never mentioned.  (PB 1/69, 1/141, 1/195 – Aug. 1828 with PB = Probate Book)

1827 September 13 – Wayne County: Burk and Collin, Executors for William Burk, deceased, deeded land to Jesse Burk.  Details not seen. (DB i/357)

1830  US Census of Wayne Township, Wayne County: Nancy Burk – 2 females 10-15, 2 females 15-19, 1 female 20-30, 1 female 40-50.

(possibly) 1833 August 8 – Wayne County: Hannah Burk deeded land to __Hency.  Details not seen. (DB P/188)

1833 August 14 – Wayne County: Nancy Burk deeded land to Reuben Brown et al.  Details not seen.  (DB P/401).  Reuben Brown married daughter Florinda Burk.

1838 November 11 – Berrien County, Michigan: Nancy Burk died 11 November 1838, wife of William, at age 53 and buried at the Burke Cemetery, Oronoko Township, Berrien County, Michigan, per ^^   Nancy migrated to Michigan with her daughters Eli Burk, Eliza Burk who married Elisha Hall, and son Moses Burk.


^^ In the same Berrien County, Michigan cemetery without gravestones, the following are reported: Andrew Burk - died September 1838, Margret Burk – died September 1838, and Leander Burk – died 7 February 1841.  Non-related Burks live nearby including Andrew L. Burk (born 1813), who belongs to a different Burk line - son of John Burk (~1763 probably Augusta County, Va. to 1738 Berrien Co, Mi.); grandson of Capt. Thomas Burk (~1741 – 1808 Giles Co. Va.); and great grandson of Peaked Mountain William Burk (died 1754 Augusta County, Virginia).  The Andrew Burk who died September 1838 in Berrien County may be misidentified for John Burk (~1763).

Children of William Burk (1785-1820) and Nancy Burk


1. Florinda Burk married 30 January 1831 Wayne County to Reuben Brown (country record).

2. Elizabeth Burk (~1808 Indiana)


1824 March 4 - Wayne County, Indiana marriage for Eliza Burk to Elisha Hall (county record).  Also named is Hugh Cull who is the minister or J.P.  

1833 August 8 – Berrien County, Michigan: Michigan Land Patient to Elisha Hall, White Pigeon Prairie Land Office, for 51.67 acres Michigan-Toledo Strip – S25, T6S, R18W, W1/2 NE1/4, (Document 612).

  Bureau of Land Management, General Land Office Records, (BLM Glo Records).  Elisha Hall has additional land patients.

1840 US Census of Orinoko Township, Berrien County:  Elisha Hall – 1 male 30-40, 1 female 30-40.    Three entries away from Moses Burk.       

1850 US Census of Berrien County, Michigan: Elisha Hall 45, farmer, North Carolina; Eliza Hall 41, Indiana; Ely Burk 38 female, Indiana


3. Aley (Ely?) Burk (~1812? Indiana, female) - see above 1850 census.


4. Moses Burk (1811/13 Indiana to 18 April 1887 at age 74 years and buried Burke Cemetery, Berrien Springs, Berrien County, Michigan).  Settled in Michigan in 1832.*

* 20th Century History of Berrien County, Michigan, by Judge Orville W. Coolidge, 1906


1838 January 7 – Berrien County, Michigan:  Marriage of Moses Burk to Mary Ann Murphy (not a country record).  

1840 US Census of Oronoko Township, Berrien County, Michigan: Moses Burk, 2 males 0-5, 1 male and 1 female 20-30.  One entry from Fanny Murphy, 3 entries from Elisha Hall, and 4 entries the other way from Andrew L. Burke (born ~1814 Virginia per 1850 census).

1850 US Census of Berrien County, Michigan: Moses D. Burk 39 Indiana, Mary A. Burk 30 Delaware, Lewis Burk 12 Michigan, Andrew Burk 9 Michigan, Malvinie (Melvina) Burk, 7 Michigan, Isaac Burk 5 Michigan, Gilbert Burk 3 Michigan, Anthony Burk 6/12 Michigan.  Wife is reported to be Mary Ann Murphy (1813-1865) and the Burks in 1850 are living next to Fanney Murphy 56 Delaware with 2 children. adds additional children – Moses D. Burk (1852-1914) and Anthony Burk is Anthony Wayne Burk (1849-1915).  There are more children.


5. Mary Burk

6. R?__ or Rene Burk; can’t read name in will.

7. Betsy Burk


Continued - Children of John Burk “I” (1760 – 1836)


(iii). Mary Burk (19 April 1787), daughter of John Burk ‘I” (1760-1836) + Alcy Robinson  died young, single.*  

(iv). Benjamin Burk (29 August 1789), son of John Burk ‘I” (1760-1836) + Alcy Robinson  died young.*

* Irish Burks of Colonial Virginia and New River, by Patricia Givens Johnson, 1992 


(v). Jesse Burk (22 November 1791 to 1838+), son of John Burk ‘I” (1760-1838+) + Alcy Robinson:   According to Johnson, Jesse Burk died young,* but records show he lived until at least 1838.   He has a Wayne County, Indiana marriage record (county record) 30 March 1817 to Betsy Watson (~1792 – 1850+).   One child – Andrew Burk was born in Michigan about 1836, which should be Berrien County.   On census records, our Jesse Burk had the following sons - 1 male born 1817 to 1820 and 1 male born 1820-1825, and one son born 1836.   


1817 – Wayne County, Indiana: Deed of William Townsend of Knox County to Ovid Boon, S13 T13 R2W.  Witnesses – John C. Kibbey, Jesse Burk.  JP’s note: Sarah, wife of William.  Rec. 1818.

DB/45/46 from Early Settlers of Indiana’s Gore 1803-1820), by Shirley Keller Mikesell, 2008.  S13 = Section 13; T13 = Township 13, and R2W = Range 2W.  SW corner of Wayne Township.  

1820 US Census of Wayne County, Indiana: Jesse Burk – 1 male 0-10, 1 female 16-25, 1 male 26-45.  (Image 01,

1823 May 20 – Wayne County: Jesse Burk deeded land to Joseph Stephenson, S20, T13, R1, details not seen. (DB L/95)  Land in in today’s NW part of Boston Township.

1827 September 13 – Wayne County: Burk and Collin (Executors for William Burk, deceased), deeded Jesse Burk land.  Details not seen. (DB i/357)

1830 US Census of Wayne Township, Wayne, County, Indiana: Jesse Burk, 1 female 0-5, 1 male and 1 female 5-9, 1 male 10-15, 1 male and 1 female 30-39

1834 January 31 – Wayne County: Jesse Burk deeded Joseph Stephenson land S20, T13, R1. Details not seen.  (DB T/5)

(questionable) 1837 March 15 – Boone County, Indiana: US Land Grant, office Indianapolis to Jesse Burk of Boone County, Indiana.  NE quarter of NE quarter of S8, T19N, R2E for 40 acres.  This land is in Sugar Township, Boone County.  

1838 September 10 – Berrien County, Michigan: Bronson Land Office - Michigan Land Patient to Jesse Burk for 40 acres (document 6757) on Michigan-Toledo Strip, S28, T6S, R 18W, SE ¼ NE ¼.     

Bureau of Land Management, General Land Office Records, (BLM Glo Records).   

1838 October 6 – Berrien County: Jesse Burke and Elizabeth his wife of Berrien County deeded 6 October 1838 to Elisha Hall of same county for $150 a tract of land lying in Berrien County, certificate 6757 given by Thomas Sheldon, Executor of the Land Office at Bronson 13 July 1835, SE quarter of NE quarter of S28, T6S, R18W, 40 acres.   Signed: Jesse Burk (seal), Elizabeth “x” Burk.  Witnesses: Samuel “x” Shernely, E. Ballinger.  Entered 6 October 1838.  Elizabeth Burke, wife of said Jesse Burk acknowledged above deed.   (DB E2/485)


Elisha Hall’s wife was Elizabeth Burk, daughter of William Burk and niece to Jesse Burk. On 14 September 1841, Elisha Hall and his wife Eliza of Berrien County sold this land to Moses Burk, brother of Eliza Burk Hall (DB2/579).  On 17 September 1852, Moses Burk and Mary Ann Burk his wife of Berrien County deeded this land back to Elisha Hall for $300 (DB V/311).


1840 US Census – can’t find.  

1850 US Census of Boston Township, Wayne County, Indiana: Elizabeth Burk 58, Kentucky, John D. Burk 30 Indiana, Maria Burk 18 Indiana, Nancy Jane Burk 14 Indiana, Andrew L. Burk 14, Michigan.  Living next to brother-in-law John Burk “II.”


Known Children of Jesse Burk + Betsy “Elizabeth” Watson


(1). Male born 1817-1820 per 1820 and 1830 US Census combined with Jesse’s 30 March 1817 marriage date.  Jesse Burk’s next male son was born 1820-1825.  One of them is John D. Burk and the other is unnamed who could be the following:


William Russell Burk (born 1820 Wayne County, Indiana per documented evidence) is placed here by excluding other Burk parents in 1820 Wayne County.   Further evidence would be useful since there is a widow Polly Burk (ca 1790) with young six children in the 1820 US Census of Wayne County (last census image).   What happened thereafter has not been found.  This is not the same Polly Burk (born 1802) who married Isaac Williams in nearby 1825 Union County, Indiana and migrated to Berrien County, Michigan.  This last younger Polly Burk was the daughter of John Burk (~1763 to 1838 Berrien County, Michigan) and wife Margaret Davison.


William Russell Burk was born 1820 Wayne County, Indiana (county listed in his Mexican War enlistment document), married 1849 at Jo Daviess County, Illinois to Lydia Hanks Likins (1831/32 Illinois) and lived in Logan County, Illinois and later in Sangamon County, Illinois. 

My appreciation goes to John Meacham for information on William Russell Burk (below), courtesy emails of May, June, and July 2015 and to listings.


1848 March 29 -  enlistment Illinois: William R. Burk, age 28, 5 foot 10 inches, born “Wayne County, Indiana,” farmer, enlisted in the War with Mexico and was discharged 4 July 1848  at expiration of service, Private.  (Doesn’t say if he enlisted at an earlier time, but information is from enlistment paper).

1849 January 1 – Jo Daviess County, Illinois: Marriage of “William R. Burch” to Lydia Likens, per Illinois certificate of marriage paper (email courtesy John Meacham, 25 March 2015)

1850 US Census of Logan County, Illinois: William R. Birk 29 Ia., Lydia Burk 18 Missouri.

1855 Illinois State Census – Logan County, Township 17: William Birks, 

1860-1880 US Census of Buffalo Hart Township, Sangamon County, Illinois: William R. Burk 1819/20 Indiana, Lydia H. Burk 1831/32 Illinois, children born Illinois: John D. Burk 1851/52, Sarah C. Burk 1854/55, Keziah A. Burk 1857/58, Mary A. Burk 1861/62, William R. Burk 1866/67.  In household 1880 are Frank M. Likins 1834/35 Illinois and Henry Likins 1837/38.

1884 March 28 – Logan County: County Circuit Court Declaration of Widow for Pension by Lydia H. Burk.  Husband, Private William R. Burk enlisted 1847 for 1 year Illinois Volunteers in Mexican War.


Continued - Children of Jesse and Elizabeth Burk


(2). John D. Burk (1820 Indiana per 1850 census), son of Jesse and Elizabeth Burk.   Difficult to trace due to multiple John Burks.  If he survived the Civil War, a family record may be needed to separate him from others.

(3). Maria Burk (1831/32 Indiana).  In 1860, either (1) living with family of Lewis Burk, Banker, in Richmond Township, Wayne County but age given is 22, or (2) with the family of John Garr (age 67), a merchant, same location, as a seamstress, age 29. 

(4). Nancy Jane Burk (1833/34 Indiana) married 2 September 1852 Wayne County, Indiana to Henry Parshall (county record).

(5). Andrew L. Burk (1835/36 Michigan).  In 1860 Kirklin Township, Clinton County, Indiana, living with the family of Charles Purdy (33 NC?), farmer + Elsie E. Purdy (35 Indiana) including Alfred E. Grimes 10 Indiana, Rosetta Halsey 3 Indiana, “Andrew L. Burke,” age 24, Michigan, farmer.


Continued – Children of John Burk “I” (1760-1836)


(vi). Dorcas Burk (16 May 1794 – female name), daughter of John Burk ‘I” (1760-1836) + Alcy Robinson:     Johnson reports Dorcas Burk lived and died in Kentucky.*   One report states she married Elisha Jacobs. **

** Roster of Revolutionary Ancestors of Indiana, Daughters of Am. Revolution,  


(vii). John Burk, Jr. or “II” 22 February 1797 to >1870 Boston Township, Wayne County, In. and buried Greenlawn Cemetery, Franklin, Wayne Co. In., unknown date), son of John Burk ‘I” (1760-1836) + Alcy Robinson:  John Burk married 15 November 1821 Union County, Indiana to Margaret “Peggy” Yaryan or Yeager (county record, several spellings) – born ~1800” and buried same cemetery, unknown date.  Union County was formed 1821 in part from Wayne County. 


1830 US Census of Wayne Township, Wayne County: Can’t find.

1840 US Census of Wayne Township, Wayne County, Indiana: John Burk with 1 male 0-5, 1 male and 1 female 5-9, 1 male and 1 female 10-14, 2 males 15-19, 1 female 30-39, 1 male 40-49.

1850 US. Census of Boston Township, Wayne County: John Burk age 50 Kentucky, Margaret Burk 50 Tennessee, James Burk 24 Indiana, Henry Burk 20 Indiana, Harrison Burk 14, Indiana.  Missing are the two males and two youngest females, likely children, in 1840.

1860 and 1870 US Census of Boston Township, Wayne County: John Burk born Kentucky and wife Margaret Burk, born Tennessee.  In 1860, adjacent to George W. (age 38) and Mary A. Stephenson (32) family.   In 1870 living with Geo. W. (age 49) and Mary A. Sheaphens (Stephenson) age 43 and family.    


Children of John Burk “II” + Peggy “Margaret” Yaryan or Yeager, per census


(1). James Burk (1825/26)

(2). Mary Ann Burk (1827/28) married 14 March 1844 Wayne County to George W. Stephenson (county record).

(3). Henry Burk (1829/30)

(4). Harrison Burk (1835/36)


(possibly) 1860 US Census of Noble Township, Wabash County, Indiana: Harrison Burk 31 Indiana, Mary A. Burk 33, Va, Sarah Burk 7 Indiana, James E. Burk 2 Indiana.


(viii). Lewis Burk (23 March 1799 to 1877, buried at Earlham Cemetery, Richmond, Wayne County, In.), son of John Burk ‘I” (1760-1836) + Alcy Robinson:  Lewis Burk married 27 November 1823 Wayne County (county record) to Maria Moffitt (1806-1876 same cemetery).  


In 1816, “Lewis Burk cut in one day the logs for (a blacksmith) building, including the ribs and weight poles, on Smith’s land about two squares east, for 75 cents, the job being considered about three days’ work.  ..Lewis Burk, about the year 1817, commenced the (blacksmith) business 2.5 miles south of town and afterward worked as journeyman and in his own shop about 12 years.”


“Lewis Burk was born near Lexington, Kentucky, 23 March 1799.  He removed early to this state with his father, who settled about a mile and a half south from where Richmond now is.  He worked on the farm a few years, and went back to Kentucky to learn the blacksmith’s trade, and returned after three years.  His trade not furnishing him constant employment, he took up that of stone-mason, working alternately at each.   …In 1831, he built, and for several years kept, the tavern-house which he sold to the late Daniel D. Sloan, at present the property of A. M. Miller, on Main Street.   In 1840, he was elected a representative to the legislature and afterward to the senate.  In 1852, he commenced the banking business as an individual banker.    He continued this business until after the passage of the national banking law, when he sold his banking house and appurtenances to James E. Reeves.  Mr. Burk was married to Maria Moffitt, 27 November 1823.  They had five children, of whom only one, Mary Jane, lived beyond the period of childhood.  She is the wife of Isaac H. Richards, merchant, now residing at Springfield, Missouri.”

History of Wayne County, Indiana, by Andrew White Young, 1872, page 368, 413


1819 Wayne County: John McClane and Peter Johnson deeded to Lewis Burk, Richmond lot #14.  Witness: William Sutherland.  Rec 1819.

DB B/215 from Early Settlers of Indiana’s “Gore” 1803-1820 by Shirley Keller Mikesell, 2008.

1830 US Census of Wayne Township, Wayne Co, In: Lewis Burk: 1 male 10-14 (1815-1820), 2 males 15-19 (1810-1815), 3 males and 1 female 20-29 (1800-1810), 1 male 30-39 (1790-1800) , 1 free colored person, male 24-49.    Note that Lewis Burk married 1823 and the only female should be his wife Maria Burk.   The males (not Lewis Burk) were born before his marriage.   His household appears to include workers and apprentices and/or included displaced Burks.  Lewis Burk purchased a number of Wayne County properties.

1840 US Census: Did not find, except for a free ex-slave named Lewis Burk, age 10-24, living alone in Richmond Township, Wayne County.   

1850 US Census of Wayne Township, Wayne County, In: Lewis Burk 50 Kentucky, Maria Burk 45 Virginia, Mary J. Burk 9 Indiana, George Burk 8 In., William Burk 5 In, and William Overman 21.

1860 US Census of Richmond P.O, Richmond Township, Wayne County, In: Lewis Burk 61, Maria Burk 56, Mary J. Burk 18, William Moffitt 13, Maria Burk 22.

1869 October 26 – Richmond, Wayne County: Quaker marriage of Isaac H. Richards to Mary J. Burke (born 16 June 1841), daughter of Lewis and Maria Burk.  Six children.   This is the only Quaker record for Burks in Wayne and Union Counties.

Abstracts of the Records of The Society of Friends in Indiana, Volume 1, Whitewater and Springfield Monthly Meeting, Wayne County, Ruth Dorrel and Thomas D. Hamm, 1996, page 50

1870 US Census of Richmond Ward 3, Wayne County: Lewis Burk, 72, Kentucky, Maria Burk 66, Virginia, Maria Burk 35, Indiana.

* Irish Burks of Colonial Virginia and New River, by Patricia Givens Johnson, 1992, page 52.       


(V). Benjamin Burk was born about 1739^ and died 14 October 1780 at the Battle of Shallow Ford, North Carolina.  He was a Captain under the Tory Colonel Gideon Wright.  Formerly, Benjamin’s wife was reported to be Mary Grant, sister to Margaret Grant who married Joseph Burk.  The author Johnson counters this by stating Benjamin Burk married Mary Eliot who was dead by 1782, ^^ but Mary was still living in 1784.    Clues favor the Eliot/Elliot surname.  Some of their children moved to Montgomery County, Virginia.


Locations and Sightings for Benjamin Burk


1768 - Rowan County, North Carolina tax list:   Benjamin Burk

1771, 1774 - Surry County, North Carolina tax:   Benjamin Burk   

1777 August 27 - Surry County:   Inventory of estate of Ann Elliott, deceased; buyers at sale of estate included Benjamin Burk, Henry Chambers, Joseph Chadwick, James Murphew.

    Surry County, N.C. Wills 1771-1827 by Jo White Linn 

1779 - Surry County:   Benjamin Burk's land was mentioned in the following land entry request.  Thomas Church entered 200 acres of land in Surry County on Forbis’s Creek water including Benjamin Burk’s improvement for quantity on January 2, 1779 and the warrant was granted.

1780 October 4 - Surry County:   Benjamin Burk died at the Battle of Shallow Ford

1784 August 30 - Surry County:   The inventory and return of the Benjamin Burke, deceased, estate was returned by John Thomas Longina and signed by Mary "x" Burke, administrix.  This 1784 inventory listed 800 acres in two tracts, 115 bushels of corn, two feather beds, 3 chairs, as returned by Mary Burke, administrator.  There were purchases from Robert Forbus, Moses Baker, Benjamin Eliot and James Burk Sr.(?) in amount of 22.9.6 pounds.  Collections came from Hugh Logan, Joseph Burk, Thomas Elliot which made a balance of 18:11:9 pounds.  Witness was Henry Speer and this inventory was recorded in November 1785 Court.

    Surry County, N.C. Wills 1771-1827 by Jo White Linn


Children of Benjamin and Mary Grant Burk

per will of Thomas Burk (see below)


(1). Josiah Burk had a Giles County bond on 13 May 1806 Giles County to Rebecca Bean, daughter of James Bean, with Bean probably being "II."   Giles County was established from Montgomery in 1806. Josiah had a second marriage bond on 5 April 1813 in Giles County to Polley Orr, daughter of Alexander Orr. **   Johnson reports descendants in Lee County, Virginia. ^^     


Josiah Burk is found on the 1810 U.S. Census of Giles County, Virginia by himself, as a male between ages 26-45.   An 1815 tax list notes an Alexander and Margaret Orr to James and Andrew Orr deed on Walker's Creek, adjacent to Josiah Burk and the foot of Brushy Mountain.   One gedcom states Josiah Burk died 1816, but information cannot be confirmed.    


(2). Samuel Burk (born ?  to 1815) married Nancy/Ann Sovain


1810 U.S. Census of Montgomery County: Samuel Burk is recorded by himself, between ages 26-45 (born between 1765 - 1784).

1812 (30 December) Montgomery County: Marriage of Samuel Burk to Ann Sovain, daughter of Abraham Sovain. 

1815 (October) Montgomery County:  Samuel Burk wrote his Montgomery County, Virginia will and named only his wife Nancy Burke.  His estate included one house on Tom's Creek and another on Church Street in Blacksburg, Montgomery County, Virginia.   Executor was his "friend" (and cousin) Jesse Pepper (son of Samuel Pepper).   Samuel signed his will with "Burke" spelling, which was entered in December 1815 Court.   

1816 Montgomery County:  John Pepper (another son of Samuel Pepper) and Samuel's widow Nancy Burk purchased property at the estate sale in 1816.  Samuel Burk lived several miles north of Samuel Wilson who married Sarah Burk, daughter of James Burk + Mary Bane.

1830 U.S. Census of Montgomery County: Nancy Burk, household total of 2 females, 1 - 20-30 and 1 - 30-40 years of age.

1840 U.S. Census of Montgomery County: Ann Burk with 1 female 30-39 and 1 female 50-59.


(3). Elizabeth “Betsey” Burk has a marriage bond on 21 July 1808 Giles County to Hiram Davis (county record).  She was named in Samuel Pepper's 1804 will.


(4). John Burk is difficult to trace with the first name being so common.  There is a Montgomery County marriage record on 4 August 1786 to Mary Cloud (Montgomery County Record), who may or may not be him. ^^  **     Later on 11 August 1797, there is another Montgomery County marriage record of John Burk to Effie Boaine, without any parents being named.  John Burk is in the 1797 will of his brother Thomas Burk, but this writer is unable to trace further.  


(5). Honora (Honor) Burk has a Montgomery County marriage bond on 27 July 1790 to John Solomon Peterson.  She is named in the 1797 will of her brother, Thomas Burk.


(6). Benjamin Burk is on his brother Thomas Burk's 1797 will at a location not known and unable to trace further.


(7). Thomas Burk (estimated born ~1773) was a bachelor. 


1780 July 29: The following appears to be a different older Thomas Burk but be aware:  A certain "Thomas Burk" is labeled a Loyalist in Montgomery County, Virginia and posted a bond to Thomas Jefferson, Governor of Virginia for his future good behavior. * ++   Later in 1780 or 1781, he briefly served in Capt. John Lucas' Company of Patriot Militia and Thomas Ingles's Company of Militia in April 1781.     


1793 April 15 - Montgomery County:  Know all me, that I, Thomas Burk, orphan using(?) 20 years of age in order to obtain necessary clothing and apparel in consideration (for) 12.6.0...bargained and sold unto William Pepper for 60 pounds, half of these in seed merchantable, (the remainder to) pay 4 June 1794, one negro girl named Hannah about 13 years of age and devised to me, Thomas Burk, by my Grandfather James Burk, deceased.   Signed - Thomas Burk Witnesses were Charles Taylor, James Ripley, William Preston.  15 April 1793: Received of William Pepper 4 pounds, 4 shillings, being an allowance with mentioned sum of 12 pounds 6 shillings.  Signed: Thomas Burk (B/205)   


1797 February - Montgomery County: Thomas Burk's will was entered into February 1798 Court, naming four brothers - Josiah Burk, Samuel Burk, John Burk, and Benjamin Burk; two sisters being Honor Peterson and Betsy Burk.  Witnesses were James Pepper, James Bane, William Pepper, and Joseph Pepper, with all the Peppers being sons of Samuel Pepper.    


^ Email courtesy Les Tatum, 1 April 2010 who gives us our best birth date estimates for the children of James Burk, Sr.

^^ Irish Burks of Colonial Virginia and New River, by Patricia Givens Johnson, 1992

++ The Preston and Virginia Papers of the Draper Collection of Manuscripts by the Historical Society of Wisconsin, 1915, 5QQ, page 47.

* On the 1782 Montgomery County, Virginia land tax and personal property tax list were 3 Thomas Burks.  One had to be Capt. Thomas Burk, who wouldn't sign a patriot loyalty pledge, but remained inactive during the 1779-1781 years.  Patricia Givens Johnson never mentions that he had a son named Thomas Burk (Jr.).  She also thinks that Thomas Burk, son of Joseph Burk being this loyalist, ^^ but evidence suggest he was born about 1773.    But to whom did the second and third Thomas Burk belong?

** Marriages in the New River Valley: Montgomery, Floyd, Pulaski, and Giles County by Therese A. Fisher, 2008.


(VI). Joseph Burk/Burke was born about 1744^ and had a marriage bond to Margaret "Margret" Grant on 29 December 1766 at Rowan County, N.C.    The bond was by John England, James Burk, and Gideon Wright (county record). *    Joseph Burk died 1785/86 at Montgomery County, Virginia, where the family was reported living near Samuel Pepper on New River.   There is a Giles County marriage bond of a "Margret Burk" "'probably' daughter of William Burk, Sr." to William Lilly on 16 August 1808.  Johnson indicates William Burk, Sr. had no such daughter. ^^   As a result, this latter Margret Burk is not understood.  It appears our Margaret Grant Burk did not remarry.


          Joseph Burk and Margaret Grant lived the following areas:


1768, 1770 Rowan County, North Carolina taxable records

1771, 1774 Surry County, North Carolina taxable

1775 February 14: “James Burk, Sr.,” deeded by quit claim to Joseph Burk 200 acres with appurtenances in Surry County on both sides of Joseph Creek.  Witnessed by John England and Hugh Lewis and signed by James Burk (“J B” – his mark).  Acknowledged in February 1775 court.

1785 Montgomery County, Virginia:  Joseph Burk of this county sold Surry County land.

1785 February 2: Joseph Burk, of Montgomery County, Virginia, deeded 21 acres of Surry County land to Thomas Elliot of Surry County on south Joseph’s Creek.  Signed Joseph (“B” – his mark) Burk and entered February term 1785.

1786 October 24 - Montgomery County:   Margaret Burk became administrix for the estate of Joseph Burk with Jacob Shell, security. ^^^ 

1786 November 25 - Montgomery County:  Inventory and appraisement of the estate of Joseph Burk, deceased was taken; appraisers being Howard Heaven, Adam Wall, and John Shell.  Estate included 4 horses, 11 cows, 2 calves, 8 sheep and 14 hogs. Cash in the hands of Samuel Pepper 13.0.0.  

1787 Montgomery County tax:    "Margret Berk" without her husband, Joseph.

1789 September 24 - Montgomery County tax: "Margaret Birk" with no white males 16-21 and 2 horses


            After this point in time, the following may or may not be our Margaret Burk:


1790 September 24 - Montgomery County tax:  Location of taxpayers, list C - Margaret Birk in area of Crab Stoubles, Mill Creeks, and Hans Meadows (today's Christiansburg).

1796 January 5 - Montgomery County: Henry Carty deeded to Margaret Burk, both of Montgomery County for 6 dollars, 98.5 acres in Montgomery County at the head of Meadow Creek waters of New River.  (B/219 second page series)

1802 September 22 - Virginia State Land Office Grant to Margaret Burk, 50 acres of land in Montgomery County on the head of Meadow Creek waters of Little River, a branch of New River and adjoining Francis Gardnor. (Library of Virginia online)

1810 U.S. Census of Montgomery Count, Virginia: Margaret Burk, Samuel Burk, and Jonathan Burk are listed.   Margaret is listed age 45+ and has a household of 2 females 26-45, 2 males 0-10, and 1 male 16-26.

1815 November 15 - Montgomery County:  Margaret Burk deeded to Charles Yearout, both of Montgomery County, (1) a tract or parcel of 98.5 acres conveyed to her by Henry Carty 5 January 1796, (2) the other a part of a patent of 50 acres dated 22 September 1802 Montgomery County...head of Meadow Creek and waters of New River...adjoining Henry Carty's land.  Signed: Margaret ("x") Birk.  Witnesses were James Craig, Jacob Yearow, Horatio Smith.  Entered Court December 1815. (D/71)

1820 U.S. Census of Montgomery County: Margaret Burk with a household of 6 members.  


          Names of children of Joseph Burk and Margaret Grant are uncertain and the following list follows that from Patricia Given's Johnson. ^^    To this writer, several marriages seem so late that they raise questions.    There is also a Montgomery County marriage bond on 17 December 1794 for a Joseph Burk and Jane Roeburn, daughter of James Raeburn.   This Joseph Burk is not mentioned in other histories.


(1). Jonathan Burk (estimated born ~1770-1775):


1805 (6 November) Montgomery County: Jonathan Burk married to Sally Cooper (county record). ^^

1810 U.S. Census of Montgomery County:  Jonathan Burk (age 26-45), 1 female (16-26), 2 male children 0-10.

1820 U.S. Census of Montgomery County: Jonathan Burk with 4 sons and 2 daughters.

1830 U.S. Census of Montgomery County: Jonathan Burk with a household of 10 persons.  Jonathan is age 50-59. 

1833 Montgomery County: Catharine Burk, "daughter of Jonathan Burk," married on 15 February 1833 to William Thompson, son of Samuel Thompson (county record).  Also, there is a nearby 28 March 1833 Floyd County marriage record of John S. Birk to Nancy Thompson, but parent names are not given.


(2). James Burk may or may not be the James Burk in a Montgomery County marriage bond on 14 December 1814 Betsy Cooper, daughter of John Cooper. ^^

(3). Mary Burk, "daughter of Joseph Birk," has a Montgomery County marriage bond on 28 December 1787 to Jacob Shull (Shell).

(4). Sarah (Sally) Burk, "daughter of Margaret Burk," has a Montgomery County marriage bond on 17 December 1789 Montgomery County to Richard Heaven.  

(5). Naomi Burk (27 October 1774 to >1866) has a Montgomery County marriage bond on 8 February 1798 to Boling (Bowley, etc.) Rogers (died 25 November 1841 in Christiansburg, Va.).  Rogers Revolutionary War pension application states Jonathan Burk witnessed wedding.   Naomi Rogers applied for a widow’s pension on 27 February 1849 and stated she was living in Montgomery County, Virginia, would be age 75 on 27 October 1849, and married Boling Rogers on 8 February 1798.   Pension was restored after Civil War.   In 1866, widow Naomi was residing with son-in-law Philip Woolwine.   (F-W1491 R2073)

(6). Nancy Burk has a Montgomery County marriage bond on 4 October 1798, Virginia to Jacob Douglass.

(7). Rebecca Burk ^^

* North Carolina Booklet: Great Events in N.C. History, Volume 11 by Mrs. Lee Moffet, Rowan County Marriage Bonds      

^ Email courtesy Les Tatum, 1 April 2010 who gives us our best birth date estimates for the children of James Burk, Sr.           

^^ Irish Burks of Colonial Virginia and New River, by Patricia Givens Johnson, 1992, page 117.

^^^ Annals of Southwest Virginia (1769-1800), by Lewis Preston Summers, 1929, page 815.

County marriage records are as found in "Marriages in the New River Valley, Virginia" by Thesese A. Fisher.


(VII). Naomi Burk was born 1 February 1746 possibly in Virginia's Roanoke - Salem area and died 22 December 1824.   Naomi married Samuel Pepper on 13 March, 1764 at Bedford County, Virginia.   About 1765, they moved to New River in Montgomery County, Virginia.    Speculation exists that after Naomi's mother died about 1748, she was raised by her sister Sarah Burk Wilson.  This could explain a Bedford County connection. 


          Samuel Pepper established Pepper's Ferry over New River in Montgomery County and "Pepper's Ferry Road" still exists in this location.   Samuel Pepper's parents were Robert Pepper and Sallie Patterson.  Samuel's sister married George Pearis and he may the George Pearis at the Battle of Shallow Ford in 1780.   Today’s Pearisburg, Giles County, Virginia has its origins with George Pearlis or a son.


Locations and Events for Samuel Pepper


1758 - Bedford County, Virginia militia:   Samuel Pepper and Robert Pepper under Capt. Matthew Talbot.  *


1767 August - Augusta County Court:   Samuel Pepper became a constable on New River+ in what is today's Montgomery County.


1768 August - Augusta County:   Court case between Samuel Pepper versus George Pearis was scheduled. +


1770 - Botetourt Court Tax: Samuel Pepper - 1


1770 June 28 - Botetourt County:    Henry Paulin sold to Samuel Pepper 100 acres on the north side of Woods River which was called Buffalo Pond.++   


          Comment: This land is adjacent the future Pepper's Ferry on New River (formerly called Wood's River).    Pepper's New River location was in Augusta County, later Botetourt, later probably Fincastle, and finally in Montgomery County. 


1774 - Fincastle County, Virginia Public Service Claims:   Payment owed to "Samuel Pepper for 84 forages and 2 diets."  **


1779 March 3 - Montgomery County Court Order:   "It appearing to this Court that a Ferry across New River at Samuel Peppers is absolutely necessary for the safety of the great number of travelers who are obliged to pass the river at the above place.  They do appoint a Ferry at Samuel Peppers across the River and do make the following rates to be observed by said Pepper, for man and horse 2 (shillings)...."   June 2, 1779 Court amended the man and horse charge to be 4 shillings for one year.  ***    Road to Pepper's Ferry was reported to run between Carolina Road and Botetourt County.  


1780 August - Montgomery and Botetourt Counties:   Court Proceeding by Justices – Following persons tried for misbehavior and treason against the state: (included) Samuel Pepper.  ^^


Samuel Pepper was an early Tory sympathizer in Montgomery County.  Later to satisfy Montgomery County officials, he was forced to enlist with Montgomery County patriot militia or find a replacement, the latter of which he did.


1780: Letter of Col. William Campbell to William Preston:   (Compelled) enlistment of men for militia service (is noted and) Samuel Pepper engage(d) a substitute (to take his place in the military draft). ^^


1780 or 1781 - Montgomery County, Virginia Militia:   William Pepper and Samuel Pepper, Jr. under Capt. John Lucas' Company.  ^  


Comment: The single record of a Samuel Pepper "Jr" raises questions and needs answers.


1781 March 24 - Montgomery County, Virginia Militia:   List of men in Capt. Patton's Company included Samuel Pepper.


1781 May 26:    Col. Stephan Trigg appointed Andrew Steele to be commissary for the Lincoln County (now Kentucky) militia:  Also mentioned without explanation were (Joseph) Lindsay, (and) Samuel Pepper of Montgomery County. ^**


Comment: This Montgomery County must be the one in Virginia because Montgomery County, Kentucky wasn't established until 1796.  Pepper was possibly a supplier for the commissary, but this is speculation.


1781 November 11:   (Colonel and later General) George Rogers Clark papers: "George Slaughter paid #300 for forage at the Falls of Ohio (River) to Samuel Pepper(?)" ^**


1782 Montgomery County, Virginia tax records:  Samuel Pepper.  ^


1785 May 22 - Montgomery County:  An account of David Louis, tax collection as a Deputy Sheriff in Montgomery County, names included Samuel Pepper, James Bean, but no Burks. 


1804 September 25 - Montgomery County:   Samuel Pepper wrote his will, naming his wife Naomi Pepper and 4 living sons - William Pepper, James Pepper, John Pepper, and his youngest son Jesse Pepper who was under 21.   Sally Pepper, daughter of his deceased son Joseph Pepper was named.  Daughters named were Polly Heaven and Sally Pepper.  Betsey Burk (daughter of Benjamin + Mary Burk) was bequeathed two cows, two calves and lambs.  Acreage surrounding Pepper's Ferry was given to his children.  William Pepper and John Pepper were named executors.


Children of Naomi Burk and Samuel Pepper:


(1). Mary “Polly” Pepper was born 1 February 1765 and died 28 September 1830 Floyd Township, Putnam County, Indiana – same township that James + Rebecca  Morphew were living.  Mary Pepper married John Heavin (Haven)


(2). Joseph Pepper (~1769 to ~1801 Montgomery County, Virginia), deceased, had his estate appraised 10 October, 1801.   On 9 November 1797 in Montgomery County, he was a witness to the will of Thomas Burk, his cousin.


(3). James Pepper (~1771)

(4). Sarah “Sally” Pepper (~1773)

(5). John Pepper (~1775) purchased items from the Samuel Burk Estate in 1814. 

(6). William Pepper (14 September 1776) has a Montgomery County marriage bond on 10 October 1791 to Jane Raeburn.

(7). (possibly) Samuel Pepper, Jr. (not in will and needs confirming that he existed).


(8). Jesse Pepper (~1786 or so) was named in his father's 1804 will and inherited 2/3 of the profits arising from Pepper's Ferry when he reached age 21.  His mother received the remaining 1/3 of the ferry profits.   


* "Virginia's Colonial Soldiers," by Lloyd DeWitt Bockstruck, 1988, page 208.

** "Lord Dunmore's Little War of 1774," by Warren Skidmore with Donna Kaminsky, 2002, page 148.

*** "Montgomery County Road Orders, 1777-1806," by Betty E. Spillman and Shirley P. Thomas, 2008, pages 5 and 6.

^ "Montgomery County's (Virginia) Revolutionary Heritage," by Ruby Allizer Roberts, Cambia, Virginia as found on Family Tree Maker's "Virginia in the Revolution and War of 1812, Military Records" on CD by

^^ The (William) Preston and Virginia Papers of the Draper Collection of Manuscripts (1915), State Historical Society of Wisconsin, reprint, page 135 & 137.

*^ (Family Tree Maker's "Virginia in the Revolution and War of 1812, Military Records, CD, 2003)

^** (From extract of "Papers of George Rogers Clark," #7997, roll 5, images 66-67 and #10852, roll 6, images 897-898.)

+ Chalkey's Chronicles online, Volume 1, page 139 & 355.

++ Annals of SW Virginia (1769-1800), by Lewis Preston Summers, 1929, page 538, a CD copy by Archive CD Books - USA.               


Miscellaneous Records for another John Burk, Surry County, NC

Kinship – Undetermined


1774 - Surry County and partial for 1775:   Benjamin Burk, John Burk, and James Burk are in Captain Martin Armstrong's District.  Joseph Burk is in Captain Samuel Freeman's District.  This couldn't be John Burk, son of James Burk, Jr. who was born 23 July 1760.  The latter Burk was thought living in Wilkes County during the 1782-1786 years.  So who is this John Burk?


1781 December 17 - Surry County:    William Rogers of Surry deeded to John Burk of Surry for 60 pounds money...on Rockey Creek Branch of Stewart's Creek.  Witness: Robert Harris (Jural) and Rick Hazelwood.  Signed: William Rogers.   (Surry County Deed Book B, page 269)


1782 - Surry County Taxable Property:   John Burk - 3 horses and mules; 2 cattle; 100 acres, Captain Humphries District.


1784 - Surry County Taxable Property:   John Burk 200 acres


1786 - Surry County Taxable Property:   John Burk, 200 acres in Capt. Humprhies District; John Burk 300 acres in Capt. Willis District.  There appears to be either 2 John Burks or the same individual with two separated taxable lands.    


          Comment: Stewart's Creek is in today's Surry County and wraps tightly around the south end of the town of Mount Airy.  This land is far from the other Burks.          Evidence to prove kinship may require y-dna testing.