When Was Benjamin Thomas Born?

It has been the long held belief that our Benjamin Thomas was born on 18 Jul 1756. Where did this birth record come from?

Published in 1916, D. D. McColl wrote a book entitled Sketches of Old Marlborough. Dedicating several chapters to the Thomas's that inhabited early Marlborough County SC, he included the genealogy of Stephen Thomas, Senior. As written, Benjamin Thomas was born on 18 Jul 1756. Again, it must be understood that this birth record was for Stephen's son named Benjamin. The birth records used by McColl were likely taken from a Bible or other such accumulative family source. However, D. D. McColl did not provide the sources for his dates.

As published on 6 Nov 1958 in The Monroe Enquirer, Mrs. George Pettaway formally witnessed as to the existence of the old Thomas cemetery. She had visited the cemetery before it had been destroyed. Mrs. Pettaway wrote: " The old Benjamin Thomas is buried at his old homeplace, now owned by Vascar Smith at Charity Ford, on Richardson's Creek, near Olive Branch, Union County, NC. Benjamin Thomas died Jan 1, 1833".

In the same article, Mrs. George Pettaway also offered information believed to have come from an old Thomas Bible. She discovered a family record that Sam L. Thomas had earlier copied from a Bible belonging to someone he once knew. Samuel Lowman Thomas was a son of Nathaniel Greene Thomas, the grandson of Ebenezer, and the great-grandson of Annanias Thomas. In the newspaper article, Mrs. Pettaway pointed out that the person who had owned the Bible no longer lived in the area and could not be located. The record follows:

Ananias Thomas, Sr. b. 10,14,1779, s/o Benjamin and Melinda Gurley Thomas d. 11,16,1861, m Sarah Ross b 1789, d. 8, 6, 1867 i. Edmond Davis Cy.

1. John A. Thomas b 1817 m Annis Nance in December 2, 1846 Bondsman Thomas Ezzell.
2. Headley Thomas b 1815 m Winny Baucom b 1820, d/o Wiley Baucom and Rebecca Tolson.
3. Ebinezer Thomas b 1820 m 1st Mary Green b 1820, m 2nd. Emeline ______.
4. Jacob Thomas b 1822 m Hester Holly b 1829 in Feb. 15, 1846.
5. David Thomas b 1810 m Alice Newsome b 1810
6. Winnie Thomas m James Austin b 1801
7. Lucy Thomas m John Howard
8. Ananias Thomas, Jr. b. 1826 d. 1858 m Sarah Elizabeth Baucom b. 1829, d/o Henry Baucom and Delaney Austin
9. Ellen Thomas b. m Howard.

"Benjamin Thomas was born 7,18, 1756. Old Benjamin died Jan. 1, 1833. Ebinezer Thomas died--- i Edmond Davis cy."

The birth date for our Benjamin as recorded by Samuel Lowman Thomas is the same date as recorded by D. D. McColl for the son of Stephen. Believing that we do not descend from Stephen Thomas, I think a mistake or confusion likely exists in the interpretation of these records. It is unlikely that the two Benjamin Thomas's would have the same birth date.

Believing that we descended from Stephen, could someone have read McColl's 1916 book and therefore accepted the record for use in there own Bible? Or in his research, could D. D. McColl have known of our Benjamin Thomas and of the family graveyard near Charity Ford? If the writings of both D. D McColl and Sam L. Thomas are true as intended, then an indisputable link exists between Benjamin Thomas of Anson County and Stephen Thomas, Sr. If that is the case, then much of this website is built in error.

Looking at Anson County census records, the 1800 census indicates that Benjamin Thomas was born prior to 1755. The 1810 and 1820 census, provides no other clue as to Benjamin's age. In the 1830 Census, Benjamin Thomas is listed as 60-70 years old. From this, we know that Benjamin Thomas was born either before 1755, or sometime between 1760 and 1770. From the ages of known children of Benjamin Thomas, I believe in the prior birth date of before 1755.


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