George Lansdown of Halifax Co., Virginia

One of my biggest questions about George Lansdown of Halifax County, Virginia would have to be: Was he the brother of William Lansdown of Wilkes Co., North Carolina or was he his son?

In 1753 William Lansdown of Westmoreland County, Virginia wrote his will and listed six children: George, John, Mary (Mitchell), William, Lucy (Edwards), and Sarah Lansdown. His will stipulated “. . . my three children [I am assuming he meant just the boys here] be bound out to good trades until they come to the age of 21 years and to have 3 years schooling each.” From this we can tell that all three of his sons were under age in 1753 and would have to have been born between 1732 and 1753. An important item to point out would be that those who have William’s son George born ca. 1715 should be able to see that the date doesn’t work. If that were true, George would have been thirty-eight when his dad wrote his will and why would his dad talked of binding him and his brothers out to good trades? Note that William Lansdown, the author of the will, lived at least his adult life in Westmoreland County, Virginia so his children would have to have been born there, not Halifax. It was his son William, mentioned in his will, who served in the Indian Wars in 1754 and requested back pay in 1755. The son was the William Lansdown that moved to Halifax County, Virginia and then on Wilkes County, North Carolina.

Twenty-four years passed after the will of William Lansdown was probated and George Lansdown was mentioned in Pittsylvania Co., Virginia, taking the Oath of Allegiance in 1777. It is this large gap that makes me think that perhaps this George Lansdown was not William’s brother, but his son. At any rate, it keeps me from just automatically plugging George in as the son of William Lansdown of Westmoreland, but I have enough uncertainty that I am not sticking him in as the son of William Lansdown of Wilkes County, North Carolina either.

Records of the Virginia State Land Office show George Landsdown obtained 103 acres in Halifax County on the Banister River at the beginning of September 1780. If this was George’s first land purchase, it seems even more likely that this George was the son of the William that moved to Wilkes County. Remember that William Lansdown served in the French and Indian War in 1754, so he would definitely have been old enough to have had George and George could have grown up by 1777.

From 1782 to 1789 George Lansdown paid taxes in Halifax County, Virginia. The 1782 tax list of Halifax county shows George paying tax on one adult (over 21) white male, two horses, and nine cattle. In 1783 he was up to ten head of cattle, but everything else remained the same. George paid taxes every year through 1789 when he is still paying on just one white male over twenty-one and three horses.

George Lansdown died sometime in the year 1798. The inventory and appraisal of his property was recorded in Halifax County Court 22 October 1798. In addition, we find his wife, Elizabeth, listed as the head of household on 10 September 1798 on the Halifax County tax list. This indicates to me that George died before that date. Elizabeth had no males over twenty-one but she did pay taxes on one slave and two horses. The 1810 tax list shows the same; one slave and one horse. No mention of Elizabeth Lansdown has been found in census records in 1820 but she does show up again in Halifax County in 1830 with just herself. Her age was given as being between the ages of seventy and eighty years.

I might as well go ahead and say that I have yet to come across a source for Elizabeth Lansdown’s maiden name. Makers of America Biographies of Leading Men of Thought and Action, edited by Leonard Wilson, gives Elizabeth’s maiden name as Thompson, with no source, and gives George Lansdown’s first name as Thomas. Perhaps Elizabeth was a Thompson, but if the one is incorrect, how much stock can we put in the other?

Debbie McGregor sent me an abstract of Elizabeth’s will, dated 1830, in which she mentions children:
1. Mary (Polly) McGregor – Polly Lansdown married John McGregor, son of Archibald McGregor on 22 Apr 1807 in Halifax County. They had at least one daughter, Pamelia McGregor.

2. Jane (Jency) McGregor – Jency Lansdown married William McGregor, 31 Jan 1805 in Halifax County.

3. Johnson Lansdown, deceased, and his children (George, Elizabeth, Polly, Sarah). Johnson was first mentioned paying taxes in Pittsylvania County, Virginia in 1800 on himself and one horse. Since you had to be twenty-one to pay taxes, this would give him a date of birth around 1779. Johnson married Sarah “Sally” Motley, 20 Jun 1808 in Pittsylvania County. Several references have Johnson Lansdown dying in 1838 but his mother’s will, written in 1830, stated that he was already deceased. Index to Virginia Estates 1800-1865, Vol. 5 has Johnson Lansdown’s accounts listed beginning in 1823, so we know he died prior to that. It is possible that he died even before 1819 because I find a marriage for Sally Lansdown dated 22 February 1819 to Francis Williams in Pittsylvania County, Virginia. Was this his widow or did they divorce? Or does someone out there have a clue as to who this Sally was?
All of Johnson and Sally Motley Lansdown’s children left Virginia and settled in Missouri before 1832. The girls all married men in the Bolton family.
i. Elizabeth H. Lansdown. She married Lewis Bolton, 20 Sep 1826, Caswell County, North Carolina. [See for more information about this couple.]
ii. Dr. George Washington Lansdown, b. April 22, 1814. George graduated from Pennsylvania Medical College in Philadelphia when he was just nineteen years old. He married 1) Mary Dixon, 24 Feb 1835 in Jefferson City, Missouri. After the death of his wife Mary in 1846, he married 2) Eliza Tennessee Taylor. George W. Lansdown had at least fourteen children and I believe his family may warrant their own posting sometime in the future. [See for more on this family.]
iii. Mary Lansdown, b. about 1816 in Virginia. She married Waller Bolton, 14 March 1832 in Cole Co., Missouri.
iv. Sarah Lansdown, b. about 1818 in Virginia. Sarah Lansdown and her sister Mary married brothers, William and Waller Bolton, on the same day. Sarah married William Bolton, 14 March 1832 in Cole Co., Missouri.
*Please note that the Johnson Lansdown who married Sally Meador in 1825 in Franklin County, Virginia, was the son of William Lansdown and Triphenia Settle Lansdown. Chancery Court records in Bedford state that he was the grandson of Norman Settle and the son of William Lansdown of that county. He left records in Bedford through 1850. He and his wife Sally Meador Lansdown had nine children.

4. George T. Landsdown and children (Emily, Jackson, Johnson, Elizabeth, Nancy, Edwin). George T. Lansdown married three times. His first wife was Nancy Rudd. They married 13 Aug 1811 in Charlotte Co., Virginia. After her death he married Mary Royster, 8 Feb 1814 in Halifax Co., Va. His third wife was Anna Thomas, 23 June 1829. Anna Thomas Lansdown died, Sept. 1840. Bob Gardner was very helpful in sorting out the children from these marriages. It appears that Nancy Rudd Lansdown had no children unless said child died during or shortly after birth.
The children of George T. and Mary Royster Lansdown were:
i. Emily T. Lansdown. She was born 1815 in Virginia. Emily was still living in 1900 in Jefferson City, Missouri with her two sisters, Mary and Nancy Lansdown. It seems that the girls never married.
ii. Laurence J. Lansdown. Bob Gardner provided his first name. He was referred to as Jackson in his grandmother’s will. He born about 1816 in Virginia. No further record.
iii. George J. Lansdown. George was referred to as Johnson in his grandmother’s will. He was born about 1818 in Virginia. No further record.
iv. Mary Ann Elizabeth Lansdown. She was born in Virginia about 1820. She was living in 1900 in Jefferson City, Missouri with her two sisters, Emily and Nancy.
v. Nancy Rudd “Annie” Lansdown. Nancy was born in Virginia and apparently named for her father’s deceased first wife.
vi. Edwin P. Lansdown, He was born about 1827 in Virginia. Edwin was living with his sisters in Cole Co., Missouri in 1860. His occupation was given as “invalid”. In 1880 his occupation was given as “painter”. He died prior to the 1900 census.
All were probably born in Pittsylvania or Washington County, Virginia.
George T. Lansdown and his third wife, Anna Thomas, had two daughters:
vii. Ellen Eliza Lansdown. Ellen was born 25 December 1835, Marion, Smyth Co., Virginia. She married Thomas E. Gardner 20 May 1856 near Seven-Mile Ford, Smyth Co., Virginia.
viii. Virginia Ann Cole Lansdown. She was born about 1838 in Cole Co., Missouri. No further record.
George left Virginia sometime after 1835 and moved to Cole Co., Missouri where his youngest daughter, Virginia A. C. Lansdown, was born in 1838. He returned to Virginia by 1840 because his wife, Anna, died there in September of 1840. He left his two youngest children in Virginia to be cared for by his wife’s relatives. They are found in the 1850 census of Smyth County, Virginia in the household of William and Mary Porter.

5. Rosy Moore, deceased, and children (Mary, Elizabeth, James and Roseannah). Roseanna Lansdown married George Moore, date and location unknown, but most likely around 1800 and in Halifax County, Virginia. According to Roberta Estes, who has done a great deal of research on the Moore family, George Moore was the son of George Moore who died in Pittsylvania County in January 1798. George and Johnson Lansdown were securities for the executors of his estate, Thomas Moore and William Womack. Children of Roseanna Lansdown and George Moore, Jr. were:
i. Mary J. “Polly” Moore. She was born ca. 1800, probably in Pittsylvania County. Polly married Paul Marshall 10 January 1833 in Pittsylvania County, Virginia.
ii. Elizabeth W. Moore. Elizabeth was born around 1804, probably in Pittsylvania County. She married William E. Dodson, 21 November 1826 in Pittsylvania County, Virginia.
iii. James Moore. No further record.
iv. Roseanna “Rosa” Moore. She was born around 1805, again probably in Pittsylvania County, Virginia. She lived with her sister, Mary Moore Marshall’s family in Pittsylvania County.

Virginia Pensioners of 1754.
Virginia’s Colonial Soldiers, Lloyd DeWitt Bockstruck.
Index to Halifax County Wills and Administrations (1753 – 1800), Will Book No. 6, 1798-1804.
Virginia Genealogical Society Quarterly, Vol. 23, #1 (Feb.1985).
Library of Virginia. Virginia State Land Office Patents E, 1775-1776, 1780-1781.
Library of Virginia. Revolutionary Claims.
The Court of Publick Claims for Halifax County Virginia.
Halifax County, Virginia Tax Lists 1782-1789.
Virginia Marriages, 1740-1850. (
Makers of America: Biographies of Leading Men of Thought and Action, Leonard Wilson, editor.
1789 Tax List B, Halifax County, Virginia. (
1798 Tax List B, Halifax County, Virginia. (
1800 Tax List B, Pittsylvania Co., Virginia. (
1810 Tax List A, Halifax Co., Virginia. (
1810 Tax List B, Pittsylvania Co., Virginia. (
1820 Census, Virginia, Pittsylvania Co., (
1830 Census, Virginia, Halifax Co., (
1840 Census, Missouri, Cole Co., Jefferson Twp., (
1850 Census, Virginia, Smyth Co., Dist. 60., (
1850 Census, Missouri, Cole Co., (
1860 Census, Missouri, Cole Co., (
1880 Census, Missouri, Cole Co., (
1900 Census, Missouri, Cole Co., Jefferson City, Dist. 36, (
The Magazine of Virginia Genealogy, Vol. 23, No. 1 (Feb.1985).
Smyth Co., History & Traditions, Wilson, Goodridge.
Virginia Marriages, 1740-1850 [].
Index to Virginia Estates 1800-1865, Vol. 5.
Miller County Autogram Sentinel, 1973, Clyde Lee Jenkins.
Virginia and Virginians, Robert Alonzo Brock, Virgil Anson Lewis.
“George Moore of Halifax Co., Va.,(Elkhorn Creek) died 1798, desc to Mercer Co, Ky.”, Roberta Estes, (
Missouri Marriages Before 1840, Ormesher, Susan.
Missouri the Center State: 1821-1915, Vol. 3, Walter Barlow Stevens.
“Lewis and Elizabeth Bolton House, Cole County, Missouri,” (
Missouri Marriage Records, 1805-2002. (
History of Cole, Moniteau, Morgan, Benton, Miller, Maries, and Osage Counties, Missouri. Chicago: Goodspeed Publishing Co., 1889.
“Lansdown-Higgins House,” Cole County, Missouri, (

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One Response to George Lansdown of Halifax Co., Virginia

  1. Susan Webber says:

    Did you ever write anything regarding Dr. George Lansdown? He and Eliza Tennessee Taylor were my great great grandparents.

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