Patience Love
The Daughter of James Love

From records in Brunswick County Virginia, we know that James Love Junior married Mary, the daughter of John and Patience Berry Ingram. John Ingram named daughter Mary in his1787 last will and testament. He bequeathed the majority of the estate to his wife Patience. In 1797, Patience Berry Ingram formally released her rights and deeded the estate to her children. She named daughter Mary “Love” in that transaction. In 1804, “James and wife Mary Love of Cabarrus County” sold Mary’s share of the estate. They sold Mary’s one-seventh share to Mary Ann Tucker and her husband Sterling Tucker. Mary Ann Tucker is the widow of Mary Ingram Love’s younger brother Thomas Ingram. This last transaction was filed in both Cabarrus County NC and Brunswick County VA.

Knowing for sure that James Love’s wife is the daughter of Patience Berry Ingram, it would seem appropriate for them to honor her mother by naming a daughter Patience Love. And what a beautiful name it would be. Keeping in mind the next generation carried names Darling, Pleasant, and Hartwell Love, the name Patience Love is equally warm and endearing. But our traditional family history fails to mention her name. And yet, looking closely at the records of Cabarrus and Mecklenburg Counties, I wonder if, or why not, the possibility has been raised before? Written at first in hopes of learning all we could about Patience and her possible ties to James Love, I am now glad to announce that the needed proof is certain.


Patience Love married to Claiborn Freeman

In the Pleas and Quarter Session records for Cabarrus County, the following documentation appears in the minute book:

April 1797
Ordered that letters of Administration issue on the estate of Clavan Freeman, dec’d to James Love and Patience Freeman, who came into court and took the oath. Joseph Howell and Alexander Forgueson, security L 400.

Patience is the wife of the deceased “Clavan” Freeman. And James Love served with Patience Freeman as Co-Administrator. Keeping in mind that several of James Love’s daughters married sons of the above Joseph Howell, it is important to point out that one of Joseph’s younger sons would later marry a daughter of Claiborne and Patience. And two months after this first related court entry, the inventory and sale of the estate of “Clavan” Freeman was recorded on 18 July 1797. Though the original loose estate papers do not survive, James Love filed in court L 95.1.4, being the total amount he raised in the sale. And dated 16 Apr 1799, he filed an additional return of unknown value. Wondering what happened to Patience, I looked for her in the 1800 census where she does not appear.

Dated 14 Apr 1800, Allen Freeman and wife of Cabarrus County sold one hundred acres (3-300, Cabarrus NC) to Elizabeth Freeman, Mary Freeman and Nancy Freeman, heirs of Clebern Freeman deceased. For one hundred pounds of money, “the said heir’s guardn & adm of Cleborn Freeman deceased” purchased land situated on Muddy Creek where it empties into the Rocky River. The deed further states the land is to be “divided equally between them to them their heirs forever.” The transaction was recorded Jul Session 1800 in Cabarrus County. Gideon Freeman and Thomas Love witnessed the transaction. The son of James Love, Thomas Love is the brother of Patience Freeman. But just who is Allen Freeman?

Allen Freeman wrote a last will and testament in 1807 naming his children. Claiborne is not mentioned. Also, the will and estate does not account for the children of deceased Claiborn Freeman. Though we know he had a grandson named Claiborne, Freeman family searchers have traditionally held that this older person of same name was not an heir of Allen Freeman. It has been believed he was a cousin or brother of Allen Freeman.

John Melcher owned and operated a mercantile near present day Mt. Pleasant NC. He also built a dam spanning the Rocky River where he worked to build a mill. John Melcher was truly an entrepreneur as evidenced by his account ledger now housed at North Carolina State Archives. Dated 23 Apr 1793, “Clebe Freeman” purchased Irish linen, allspice, and ginger from Melcher. He settled his bill by working at the mill. The entry appears in the ledger as follows:

Reading through the ledger many times, I had failed to look closely at the next entry written on the same page as the above. On 14 Mar 1793, “Allen Freeman Senior” made a purchase. He bought four pounds of steel “for his son Clebe.” The entry reads:

This being the same Allen who wrote his last will and testament in 1807, we now know without doubt that Claiborne Freeman was his son. Claiborne died prior to 1800 at which time his father settled up with the Administrator. This being the case, there was no need to account for Claiborne in the last will and testament.

There is one other record of importance that links the families of Freeman and Love. Bethel Methodist is considered the mother church for the Rocky River region. A state sanctioned historical marker tells the story of its famed brush arbor. And church history states that in 1808, Thomas McEachern donated land for the construction of the first meetinghouse. Among the several trustees who received the land were Claiborn Freeman and Thomas Love. At the end of his life, Thomas Love also served as trustee receiving land from his brother Jonah for Love’s Chapel. But this information concerning Bethel is not provable. The earliest deed for Bethel was not recorded in court. From sources unknown, the information from and about the deed is known by way of a newspaper article written in the early 1900’s. But the problem is, the church later burned. The fire may have destroyed the original copy of the deed. But in this writing, I have no doubts as to the accuracy of the church history. Of importance to this story is that the name “Claiborn Freeman” is recorded after the death of Patience’s husband of same name. It is said he is Allen’s grandson, the son of Gideon Freeman. And it is important that this Claiborne is recorded with Thomas Love.

Patience Love married second an unknown Mr. Taylor

On 16 April 1805, the Court of Pleas and Quarter Session minutes for Cabarrus County NC reads:

Clayton Freeman. Patience Taylor may sell a Negro of his.
We know that Patience’s first husband was named Claiborne Freeman. His name is spelled differently in nearly every record. But from the court record above, it appears that his widow Patience had remarried prior to 1805. She married to a member of the Taylor family. At this point there is little evidence of whom she might have married. But as follows, records of the day illustrate a close relation between Love and Taylor:
Deed (L-142, Anson, NC). On 12 Jan 1801, Frederick Taylor of Anson sold land adjoining that owned by Daniel Coburn to Thomas Love. The transaction was witnessed by John Hagler and Daniel Coburn.
Deed (18-276, Mecklenburg NC). On 25 Jul 1804, John Hagler sold land on Clear Creek to Thomas Love. The transaction was witnessed by William Potts and Frederick Taylor.
And then dated 17 Oct 1808, the estate of Claborn Freeman, dec’d was settled by Jno. K. Carson and John B. Wallace. Note that John K. Carson is the son of land speculator Thomas Carson. In the late 1790’s, Thomas Carson and others purchased nearly 50,000 acres in what is now Stanly County. Later, William Thornton, designer of the United States Capitol Building purchased the land for purposes of mining. And finally, dated 18 April 1810, the last known court record for Claiborne Freeman in Cabarrus County reads:
Clayborn Freeman, dec’d. Settlement by James Love, Adm. Balance L 348.5.0.

Dated 2 Aug 1810, Elizabeth Freeman, daughter of Claiborne and Patience, married George Reed in Cabarrus County. Ely Howell served as bondsman. Elizabeth’s sister married Michael, the younger brother of Ely Howell. And James Love’s daughter Nancy was married to Ely. A year later, dated 27 Aug 1811, Michael Howell and George Reed sold to George Long 100 acres (8-70, Cabarrus County NC) situated at the mouth of Muddy Creek. This is the very same land that James Love, as guardian and administrator, purchased earlier on behalf of the children Elizabeth, Mary and Nancy Freeman. As was customary for the day, when the girls reached maturity and married, their husbands sold the land. I am sure their father would have been pleased that his girls had a good and proper beginning.

Not yet knowing what happened to Patience’s daughter Nancy, we can account for Elizabeth and Mary. Elizabeth and George were at the epicenter of one of this state’s great stories. That story will require a separate page. But note that George’s oldest son was named James L. Reed. Does L. stand for Love? And what we know of Elizabeth’s sister Mary is less clear. After selling the land on Muddy Creek, dated 20 Jan 1818, her husband Michael Howell entered 20 acres of land on the east side of Rocky River (Grant # 503, Cabarrus County NC). Surveyed on the same day as the entry, the land adjoined James Love and John Reed to the east and Evan Howell to the west. And note that according to a marriage bond in 1805, Evan Howell filed bond to marry Martha Love who is believed to be a daughter of James Love. This land issued in 1820 to Michael Howell adjoined known lands of James Love. It was located just below present day Reed Mine road where it turns sharply before running the ridge towards the mine. By 1830, Michael and brothers removed to near present day Waynesville, in Haywood County. There are no records for sales of land in Cabarrus. Michael later moved to Montgomery County, Arkansas where he died.

The above illustrates the tight family relationships once held between the Love and Freeman families. After the estate of her first husband was settled, Patience Love Freeman seems to have vanished. There are several lines of Taylor in he area. Who did she marry? Not yet knowing the answer to that question, I was able to find Patience mentioned one last time. Dated 2 Mar 1839, the warrant for a land grant (Grant #2875, Montgomery County NC) issued to George Kesler mentioned adjoining landowners. Being 66 acres on Rock Hole or Camp Branch, the land adjoined that owned by “Patience Taylor, Martha Reed, and Jonah Love.” This is vitally important in that these three people are likely brother and sisters. Patience’s sister Martha married Conrad Reed, the discoverer of first gold in America. Conrad died ca. 1834. It is known from deeds that he owned land on Camp Branch. And we know for sure that Jonah is a son of James Love. James Love himself once owned several large tracts on Camp Branch that is not accounted for through later conveyance. Could we be looking at these three siblings living on the estate lands of James Love?


Elizabeth, daughter of Patience Love Freeman
Mary, daughter of Patience Love Freeman (not yet researched)
Nancy, daughter of Patience Love Freeman (not yet researched)


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