Family A265

John Adams (1769-1825) Grave Site in Memory Gardens - Adams Family Section - Hawesville, Kentucky.
John Adams (1769-1825) and Nancy Agnes Culbertson Grave Stone in Memory Gardens – Adams Family Section – Hawesville, Hancock County, Kentucky. This picture was taken on September 26 2009. Unfortunately about 6 years prior to this pictures somebody toppled most of the stones in the Adams section. They were to heavy for me to lift by myself to put them back into place.

This family is represented by David Scifres. David’s oldest known ancestors are John Adams and wife Nancy Agnes Culbertson (she may be his 2nd wife though no evidence to support this has thus far been found). The data below is taken from David’s tree on –

John Adams (1769-1825)

born 1769 PA – died 8 Jul 1825 Breckinridge Co., KY

Wife: Nancy Agnes Culbertson b. 1778 Franklin Co., PA – d. 5 Jul 1843 Hancock Co., KY


1 Alexander Adams (died at age 26)
2 James Adams
3 Robert Adams (d. abt. 1820-1824) – Died of Yellow Fever near Natchez MS
4 William Adams (b. 1798 – d 1888)
5 David Adams (b. 1800 – d 1894)

They were said to have at least 5 children Alexander, William, Robert, David and James (Genealogy of the Culbertson and Culbertson Families Revised Edition by Lewis R Culberson 1923). Sons David and William are well documented and lived the majority of their lives just outside what would become Hawesville, Kentucky on the family farms in Hancock County as did their surviving children.

John, Nancy, Alexander, William and David are all buried together in Memory Gardens Cemetery in Hawesville, Kentucky along with many of their descendants. There is also an A.C. Adams listed as died in his 26th year and I assume this is Alexander. Alexander’s middle name was likely Culbertson after his mother.

Much of what we know today about John Adams (1769-1825) comes from a sketch of his grandson John Quincy Adams in A History of State, Hancock County published in 1885 .

“J. Q. ADAMS was born in Hancock County, May 31, 1845, and is a son of William
and Mary Ann (Bright) Adams. The father (William) was born near Frankfort, Ky., July 22,
1799, his people being natives of Pennsylvania. The grandfather, John Adams,
made the journey from Pennsylvania to Frankfort on a raft. In 1808 he came to
Hancock County and settled on a farm of 500 acres, which is now owned by his two
sons, David and William Adams. The grandfather subsequently served as a soldier
in the war of 1812, and resided in the county until a good old age . . . ”

William Adams (1798-1888) was still living at the time of the publication of this sketch. It is likely he was the source of information about his father John. We can conclude that John Adams was a native of Pennsylvania who, like so many others, traveled down the Ohio via flatboat and ultimately arrived in Frankfort prior to 1798, given that both William and David are documented as having been born in Frankfort. As with many oral histories, I have found some discrepancies in dates that I’ll back up with documentation.

In the 1790 Census for Hopewell, Newton, Tyborn, and Westpensboro, Cumberland, Pennsylvania we find John Adams. John would have been 21 at this time – the record lists 2 males under the age of 16, 1 male over 16 and 1 free white female. I’m not entirely sure this is the same John Adams unless his father had been killed or died and his mother a widow. Or another possibility is this was a marriage to a first wife. Nancy would have only been 12 at this time so it isn’t likely to be her. Also on the same page is a Matthew Adams (read section on Redstone Adams Cluster below – is this the same Matthew???). This may or may not be the John Adams who married Nancy Agnes Culbertson.

John Adams - 1790 Censu - Hopewell, Newton, Tyborn, and Westpensboro, Cumberland, Pennsylvania
John Adams – 1790 Censu – Hopewell, Newton, Tyborn, and Westpensboro, Cumberland, Pennsylvania

John was from Pennsylvania and appears to have migrated to Bridgeport, Kentucky sometime between 1795 and 1797.

In the text of Genealogy of the Culbertson and Culberson Families by Lewis R. Culberson, M.D. published in 1923, the author presents information about the ancestry of Agnes “Nancy” Culbertson, as well as a reference as to when she might have moved to Kentucky. On Page 241 there is mention of her marriage to John Adams, her cousin, and their subsequent move to Frankfort. Unfortunately, exactly when this marriage occurred, we do not know. Dr. Culbertson speculates that several of the Culbertson family may have moved to Kentucky in 1795 with “Samuel of the Creek” and the Lindsay family. Nancy’s mother was Janet Lindsay (1747-1794) and her father was Alexander Culbertson (1747-1790) of Culbertson’s Row, in Falling Springs, Franklin, Pennsylvania. Indeed it was very often the case that families who migrated early to Kentucky did so in large extended family groups. And as it turns out Nancy and 3 of her siblings all marry Adams spouses and all move west as I’ll show later.

In their migration west, pioneers from Pennsylvania and Northern Virginia often gained access to the Allegheny River at Olean, the Conemaugh River at Johnstown, the Youghiogheny River at West Newton, the Monongahela River at Brownsville (Redstone) or the Ohio River at Pittsburgh, Wellsburg (until 1816 called Charlestown) or Wheeling.  Removing any other considerations, the most likely path in this case would have been for John to travel Braddock’s Road from Guilford across Pennsylvania to either Pittsburgh, Wellsburg (Charlestown) or Wheeling  or went to Brownsville (Redstone) via the Cumberland Road as these were the primary flatboat ports of departure for Kentucky starting as early as 1792. However, because John’s wife had two siblings marry Adams spouses from the same Adams family and subsequently move to a location only a few miles from Wellsburg (Charlestown) in Hopewell Township, Washington, PA in 1795, Wellsburg (Charlestown) has now become the most logical point of departure. Wellsburg at the time was second only to Pittsburg on the Ohio.

It was not until after the Battle of Fallen Timbers on August 20th, 1794 and the signing of the Treaty of Greenville on August 2, 1795 that the average American would consider it safe enough to attempt to migrate west to Kentucky with their families. As a result of this treaty, the Miami and Shawnee relinquished claims to much of the region north of the Ohio River. This ended the worst of Indian raids in Kentucky after 50 plus years of chaos that began in 1754 with the Seven Years’ War (French and Indian War). This treaty can also be said to have finally brought to an end the Revolutionary War in the West and opened Kentucky for large scale settlement.

It has been stated that John Adams traveled to Kentucky on a raft, most likely a flatboat, and took up residence in Frankfort, Kentucky according to an article published in Kentucky: A History of State (Hancock) by Battle, Perrin and Kniffin, 2nd Ed., 1885 – page 743. However, it should be noted that there is an early Kentucky tax record in 1795 of a John Adams already in Franklin County (then part of Mercer County). Therefore it appears he may have come as early as 1795 or as late as 1797.

By 1797, John and family lived in Bridgeport, Kentucky just 3 miles outside of Frankfort. John is listed in the 1797 Tax list of Franklin County and has 50 acres of land in the South Benson valley. He also appears on the 1800 & 1801 KY census. These census records were recreated for destroyed census documents buy reviewing tax list records.

The 1810 Federal Census for Franklin, Kentucky lists John Adams and 2 Males under 10 (David and Robert) and 3 between 10 – 15 (Alexander, James and William), one Male between 26 – 44 (John age 41) and one Female between 26 – 44 (Nancy age 32). No record for a John Adams in Breckenridge, Kentucky for 1810 has been identified, leaving one to conclude the mention of the 1808 migration to Hancock (then part of Breckenridge) in the sketch must have been mistaken and actually occurred after 1810 and prior to 1820. Also listed next to John in the 1810 census is a Joseph Adams.

John Adams - 1810 federal census - Franklin Kentucky
John Adams – 1810 federal census – Franklin Kentucky

We know from the sketch that John also served in the war of 1812. After a  careful review of Kentucky Soldiers of The War of 1812 by G. Glenn Clift in 1931, one finds 15 entries in different companies for John Adams and given the timing of the terms a maximum of 5 different John Adams in the state that served. All served as a Private and several were at the Battle of the Thames.

According to a Newspaper article published in 1894 covering the life and death of John Adam’s son David Adams (1800-1894), it is reported that John Adams and sons migrated to Breckinridge (ultimately Hancock) in 1818. This article also claims that the land had been deeded to John Adams by the state of Virginia. This would mean John Adams held this deed prior to 1792, probably in Jefferson County, Virginia. The deed was eventually transferred to John Quincy Adams (Grandson of John Adams) after the death of his younger brother Jessie Bright Adams and was the first time the property had been deeded since originally granted to John Adams by the state of Virginia. This claim would prove to be somewhat false. While the year 1818 is accurate for the move and the land was indeed a revolutionary land grant, it was just not to John Adams, but to someone else and then purchased by John Adams in 1818.

Hancock County records (Book XX, page xx) show an indenture dated April 1st 1818 between Norborne and Ann P. Beal of Jefferson County, Kentucky and John Adams of Franklin, Kentucky. The transaction was for a full sum of $1,450 in exchange for 500 tract of land that was part of an original patent dated April 23rd, 1787 to John May and Ann Lewis May purporting to contain 6000 acres. The land transferred to John L May and Polly May Ephus (and her husband was Daniel Ephus) upon the death of her father. The land was in turn sold to Norborne B. Beal, Matilda A. Galt and Mateldia Maupin by indenture bearing date of XXX day of XXXX recorded in General Court of the Commonwealth. The 500 acre tract was then sold to Norborne B. Beall by William C Galt, Matilda A. Galt (wife), Richard A. Naupin/Maupin (on behalf of his infant daughter Matilda Naupin/Maupin) by indenture dated November 21st, 1812.

John Adams - 500 Acres in Hancock 1 Apr 1818 - Page 1 John Adams - 500 Acres in Hancock 1 Apr 1818 - Page 2

By 1820 John and family are undoubtedly living in Breckinridge County, Kentucky residing in a section of the county near Lewisport, just outside of what would eventually be Hawesville, Kentucky (but not until in 1836). The 1820 Federal Census lists John Adams in Breckenridge County in the township of Stephens Port. The number of persons, gender and ages align perfectly with what we know of John. The listing accounts for 6 free white persons and 4 slaves.  John Adams (age 51) with 1 male 16 – 18 (Robert or perhaps an unnamed child) and 4 males 16 – 26 (James or Robert, Alexander,  William age 22 and David age 20) and Nancy (age 42). At this time they also had 4 slaves: two male between 14 – 25 years old and 2 female with the first under 14 and the second between 26 and 44 years old.  Also on the 1820 Census for Stephens Port is a James Adams listed as age 26-40? Could this James Adams be John’s son? Was James older than David and William? Maybe the youngest son was undocumented and Robert, Alexander, William and David are those in the 16-26 age group.  Stephens Port is approximately 14 miles east and up the Ohio River from what would become present day Hawesville (which would not be incorporated until 1836). John probably had to travel to the nearest census location to be counted or Stephens Port might have been the nearest city at the time thus the designation on the census.

John Adams - 1820 Federal Census - Breckenridge Kentucky
John Adams – 1820 Federal Census – Breckenridge Kentucky


Generation 2a – William Adams

(7 Feb. 1798 Bridgetport, KY – d. 1888 Hancock, KY)

Wife: Mary Ann Bright (b. 29 Mar 1807 NY – d. 23 Oct 1877 Hancock,KY)


  1. William Culbertson Adams (1835 – 1877 LA) Married: Henrietta L White
  2. Sarah Graham Adams (1838 – 1853)
  3. Georgetta Adams (1840 – 1885) Married: Richard Walker Hawes
  4. John Quincy Adams (1845 – 1907) Married: Sarah Elizabeth Hawes & Margaret Jane Crockett
  5. Jessie Bright Adams (1846 – 1916) Married: Hettie Gibson Hawes
  6. Unknown child A – did not live to adulthood
  7. Unknown child B – did not live to adulthood
  8. Unknown child C – did not live to adulthood
This is the Adams House built by John Adams and his sons WIlliam and David between 1818 and 1820. It was origionally a dog trop style two story log home that has subsecquently had weatherboarding applied. Its walls are over 2 feet thick.
This is the Adams House built by John Adams and his sons William and David between 1818 and 1820. It was originally a dog trop style two story log home that has subsequently had weatherboarding applied. Its walls are over 2 feet thick. It is still standing today just outside Hawesville, Kentucky.

Generation 2b – David Adams

(9 Sep. 1800 Bridgeport, KY – d. 7 Apr. 1894 Hancock, KY)

Wife: Eliza Sterett (b. 8 Nov 1813 Breckinridge, KY – d. 29 Jan 1895 Hancock, KY)


  1. John A. Adams (1835 – 1899) Married: Jennie W Blincoe (1866) and Inez A Batson (1882)
  2. Robert Culbertson Adams (1838 – 1922) Married: Mary Ann Blinco
  3. Patsy Adams (1840 – 1877) Married: William Greathouse
  4. Nancy Green Adams (1841 – 1904) Married: Alexander D Cooper (moved to Union Co. KY)
  5. Sally DeHaven Adams (1846 – 1927) Married: James Wilson
  6. Margaret Rebecca Adams (1849 – 1920) Married: Cecil Thomas Duncan
  7. Mary Ann Adams (1851 – 1931) Married: Ciscro S. Coleman (moved to Union Co, KY)
  8. Florence Ellen Adams (1856 – ) Married: not sure where Florence went


David Adams (1800-1894) Obit
David Adams (1800-1894) Obit



Breakthrough – Confirmed DNA Match

1/31/2013 – Terri and Robert Paul Adams (family A364)- Fifth Great Grandson of David Adams (1720-1814) outlined below is confirmed as being related with 67 marker Y-DNA test with only 2 step genetic distance from A265. This means there is a 95% confidence of a common ancestor within 8 generations. I believe family A265 is descended from a Brother of David Adams (1720-1814) from family A364 .

Guilford Township, Franklin PA – Adams Cluster

12/10/2012 – I’ve recently discovered that of the four Culbertsons who married Adams spouses, two of the spouses are from the same father: David Adams (1720-1814). David appears to have a brother William Adams (1725-1792). And William’s will mentions two other brothers James and Robert. There is also a widow Adams in Gilford in 1751 Tax list that could have been the mother of these brothers. I feel like there is a high probability that the two other Culbertson siblings who married Adams, married children of William, Robert, James or some other sibling of David Adams (1720-1814).

Alexander Culbertson (1747-1790) and Janet Lindsay (1747-1794) had 10 children. They married in 1768 in Falling Spring, Franklin Pennsylvania.  Four of their children married Adams.

  • Robert Culbertson (1769-????)
  • Samuel Culbertson (1771-????)
  • Ester Culbertson (1775-1839)  – Married James Lindsay (1772-1833) in 1797 and have moved to Franklin county, Kentucky by 1798.
  • Elizabeth Culbertson (1777-????) – Married George McCandless – died in Ohio
  • Nancy Agnes Culbertson (1778-1843)Married John Adams (1769-1825)Moved to Franklin County, Kentucky between 1795-1797. She died in Hancock County, Kentucky.
  • Jane Culbertson (1781-1831) Married John A. Adams (1773-1850). John was son of David Adams (1720-1814). Born April 20, 1773 in Falling Spring Creek, Guilford Twp., Cumberland County. Married Jane around 1796. Died in Hopewell Township, Washington County, Pennsylvania.
  • Maria Culbertson (1783-????) –  Married XXXX Adams and moved to Scott County Kentucky.
  • Martha Culbertson (1785-????) –
  • John L. Culbertson (1786-1851)Married Martha Adams (1777-1823). Martha was daughter of David Adams (1720-1814).  Lived in Hopewell, Washington County, Pennsylvania by 1800 Census. John L. and father David Adams are buried in Wellsburg, Brooke, West Virginia – just across the state line from PA.
  • Prudence Culbertson (1787-1877) – Married Benjamin Hensley in Frankfort, Kentucky in July 1810. She traveled to Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky as a child with her sisters in 1795 to 1797.

When you step back and look at it, it reads almost like the entire family moved west together with some stopping in Hopewell and others traveling on down the Ohio River to Kentucky. John L. and sister Jane Culbertson stopped in Hopewell and Esther, Nancy Agnes, Maria, Prudence and perhaps Elizabeth went on down the Ohio River.

Brothers David Adams (1720-1814) and William Adams (1725-1792) are documented in Guilford Township, Franklin, Pennsylvania. David is known to have at least three brothers based on information obtained from the will of his Brother William Adams. The brothers are Robert Adams (ca. 1721/4 – ????), William Adams (1725-1792) and James Adams (1730 – ????). David Adams first appears in Guilford Township, Franklin PA in 1766. David Adams, September 9, 1766; neighbors, John Shetz, Peter Fry, Patrick and John Vance, William Adams, John Lindsay, John Buck.

In 1766 David Appears to have purchased land next to his brother William Adams in Guilford.

1766 Sep 9th - William Adams Land Application - Toybone Twnshp - Cumberland County Page 2
1766 Sep 9th – William Adams Land Application – Toybone Twnshp – Cumberland County Page 2
1766 Sep 9th - William Adams Land Application - Toybone Twnshp - Cumberland County Page 1
1766 Sep 9th – William Adams Land Application – Toybone Twnshp – Cumberland County Page 1
1766 Sep 9th - William Adams Land Application - Chambersburg - Cumberland County Page 2
1766 Sep 9th – William Adams Land Application – Chambersburg – Cumberland County Page 2
1766 Sep 9th - William Adams Land Application - Chambersburg - Cumberland County Page 1
1766 Sep 9th – William Adams Land Application – Chambersburg – Cumberland County Page 1
1766 Sep 9th - James Adams Land Application - Toybone Twnshp - Cumberland County Page 2
1766 Sep 9th – James Adams Land Application – Toybone Twnshp – Cumberland County Page 2
1766 Sep 9th - James Adams Land Application - Toybone Twnshp - Cumberland County Page 1
1766 Sep 9th – James Adams Land Application – Toybone Twnshp – Cumberland County Page 1
1766 Sep 9th - David Adams Land Application - Chambersburg - Cumberland County Page 2
1766 Sep 9th – David Adams Land Application – Chambersburg – Cumberland County Page 2
1766 Sep 9th - David Adams Land Application - Chambersburg - Cumberland County Page 1
1766 Sep 9th – David Adams Land Application – Chambersburg – Cumberland County Page 1

In 1766 both David and brother WIlliam are recorded in the West Side Applications book for adjoining land in Guilford Towhsnip next to Joseph and John Lindsay and Benjamin Chambers. Joseph and John Lindsay are uncles to Jane Culbertson of Family A364 and Nancy Agnes Culbertson of Family A265.

  • Entry 1183 – Joseph Lindsay – 200 Acres – Patent returned Jan 17th 1775 for Samuel Lindsay – Book C112 – 235. Adjoining the Lands of Edward Crawford South, John Miller Northward. William ???? Westward and Col. John Armstrong Eastward in Guilford Township Cumberlan County
  • Entry 1186 – William Adams – 250 Acres – patent reutnred  26th of Dec 1788 – Book B8 – 180 – Lying on teh East side of the Falling Spring joining the lands of Benj Chambers eastward, David Adams Westward, William Lindsay Southward and Patrick and John Vance  Northward including his improvements in Guilford Township Cumberland County
  • Entry 1187 – David Adams – 250 Acres – Patent signed over to William Adams and returned Dec 26th 1783. Book B8 – 180 and D64 – 40. Lying on the West Side of Falling Spring joining the lands of William Adams eastward, Peter Fery Westward, John & William Lindsay South and Patrick and John Vance northward including his improvements in Guilford Township Cumberland County
  • Entry 1188 – William Lindsay – Formerly Letterkenny Township not Green Township in Franklin County – 300 Acres – Book E – 172. Lying in Conecochrague Creek adjoining the land of John Andrew eastward, Benj Chambers Westward, John Miller Southward and Benj. Chambers Northward. Including his improvements in Guilford Township Cumberland County.

David Adams married Martha MacIntire. In 1795, David and and the two Culbertson/Adams couples listed above, his other daughter Margarete Adams (and husband Robert Bines) and youngest son David Adams II (and wife Elizabeth Stewart) all moved to Hopewell Township, Washington County, PA – on a farm called Newington on HWY844 (Washington Pike) near the WV border. David Adams and son-in-law, John L. Culbertson, are buried just over the WV line in Wellsburg (called Charlestown until 1826), Brooke, West Virginia. His will is contained in will Book 3 Page 62 Washington Co. PA. The will can be read on Family A365’s page.

This move appears to have come about 3 years after brother William passed away in 1792. Alexander Culbertson died in 1790 and Jean Lindsay Culbertson in 1794. It appears 5-6 of the Culbertson’s Children move west with David Adams (1720-1814) in 1795.  Newington is very near where one would embark on a flatboat in Wellsburg WV, if going to Kentucky. The move in 1795 also happens to be the same year the  Treaty of Grenville is signed and when my John Adams appears to have come down the Ohio between 1795-1797.  

David’s brother William Adams (1725-1792) is first found in Cumberland County in what would become Guilford Township, Franklin, PA on Oct 12th 1749 in a very early land entry (I have not been able to locate – this may be a history book confusion with a William Adams in Antrim in 1749. I am not sure if this is the same WIlliam Adams or not). William Adams appears on the Guilford tax lists for 1751 AND 1752. Also, as an aside, brother Robert (ca. 1718- ????) had a son George Adams in KY in 1789 according to the will (written in Apr of 1789) of William Adams (1725-1792). There is only one George Adams in Kentucky that I have seen in tax lists and that is 19 Mar, 1789 George Adams of Madison County Kentucky.

It has been discovered based on information in the will of William Adams these four brothers came from the Parrish of Cumber, Londonderry, Ulster Ireland. Their father Robert Adams came to PA with his brother James Adams in 1740. They were part of the Scots-Irish immigrations. Robert and James both died in 1752. James family migrated to Carolina (eventually York South Carolina) in 1756 and Roberts family stayed in PA. For more information see pages dedicated to both of these famalies:

Guilford Township  was formed around 1751. Guilford in 1751 would have covered Guilford (including the city of Chambersburgh) and Greene Township which was cut from Guilford Township in 1788. The time of its formation is arrived at by taking the oldest dates of its mention in the records of Cumberland County. The Earliest settlers in Guilford township include William Adams in Oct. 12, 1749; neighbor James Cook. David Adams, Sep. 9, 1766; neighbors, John Shetz, Peter Fry, Patrick and John Vance, William Adams , John Lindsay, John Buck. Robert Craig, June 4th, 1762.

The John Lindsay (1709-1799) above is most likely the grandfather of Jane and Nancy Agnes Culbertson.

In Greene Township, the oldest warrant found was that of Joseph Culbertson, in 1744. Alexander Culbertson (this is Nancy Agnes CUlbertosn’s Great Uncle) had one dated 1749. Their neighbors at the time were John Neal, William Carr, Reuben Gillespie, John Stump. This settlement was known as Culbertson’ s Row.

Joseph Culbertson (1723-1794) and Alexander Culbertson (1714-1756) are brothers of Samuel Culbertson (1719-1789) the grandfather of Jane and Nancey Agnes Culbertson.

Franklin County was formed by the Chambers family 1730. “Falling Spring” was first settled by Benjamin Chambers, a Scots-Irish immigrant, in 1730, who started a grist mill and saw mill by a then-26-foot (7.9 m) high waterfall where Falling Spring Creek joined Conococheague Creek. The creek provided power to the mills, and the settlement was known as “Falling Spring.” On March 30, 1734, Chambers was issued a “Blunston license” for 400 acres (1.6 km2), from a representative of the Penn family. The Great Wagon Road connecting Philadelphia with the Shenandoah Valley passed nearby. In 1744, it was completed through Harris’s Ferry, Carlisle, Shippensburg, and Chambersburg to the Potomac River. The Forbes Road and other trails going to Fort Pitt passed nearby as well. In 1748 a local militia was formed for protection against Indians, with Benjamin Chambers being named colonel. Chambersburg was on the frontier during the French and Indian War. The area’s population dropped from about 3,000 in 1755 at the start of the war to about 300, with most settlers not returning until after 1764 when the peace treaty was signed.The area was officially part of Chester County, then Lancaster, and then Cumberland until it became part of the newly established Franklin County in 1784. – this paragraph is from wikipedia

1786 Tax Tables for Guilford, Franklin County include David and William Adams as well as Alex Culbertson, John Lindsay, James Lindsay, Fulton Lindsay and Mary Lindsay.

James Lindsay (1740-1801) and John Lindsay (1741-????) are brothers to Janet Lindsay (1747-1749), the mother of Jane and Nancy Agnes Culbertson. The listing above is most likely those brothers. I have not figured out who Fulton Lindsay is yet.

As an aside: There is a Fulton Lindsay as well as Joseph, James, William and Author Lindsay are all listed on page 156 and 157  of the KY Doomesday book and there is a George Adams listed on page 172 all in 1775. This George Adams could easily be the George Adams referenced in the will of William Adams below as his nephew. And the James Lindsay listed below in William Adams will as a witness is most likely the brother of Janet Lindsay and uncle to Jane and Nancy Agnes Culbertson.

This James Lindsay in Ky in 1775 could easy be uncle to Jane and Nancy Agnes Culbertson.

William Adams (1725-1792) Will – I NEED A COPY OF THIS. Not sure what to make of the relations without reading the real copy.

Franklin County Wills

William Adams       Written: 24 Apr. 1789     Proved: 28 Mar. 1792
Executors:  John Crawford & Edward Crawford
Witnesses:  James Lindsay, David Andrew & Anthony Dunleavy
Guilford Twp. Land adj Wm long on east; John Miller Heirs on south; heirs of Alexander Long on west; Jacob Snider & Jacob Cook on north. Youngest bro James had 3 sons by 2nd wife; Robert, James & Wm. Dau Grizel Dorlahan had dau Sarah. Sis-in-law Elizabeth Hamilton’s youngest dau Elizabeth Gibson. Wm Dorlahan. Eldest bro Robert Adams, his eldest son Geo Adams now living in KY. Mary Howard now lives on plantation with testator. Mentioned by relationship not stated in Sarah Heatherington’s dau Elizabeth. Mary Howard’s 2 children: Sarah Gibson & Mary Smith. George Heatherington

Interesting he did not mention brother David. Did he have other brothers not mentioned? Just a few years after William dies, Brother David (and sons along and the Culbertson siblings) moves west to Hopewell.

I did some digging on the reference to Brother Robert’s eldest son George. William’s will was written in Apr of 1789 and there is only one George Adams in Kentucky that I have seen and that is 19 Mar, 1789 George Adams of Madison. The timing is perfect on this one, it has to be him unless he is undocumented. Also listed in Madison, Kentucky on the same day is a John Adams and James Adams. There are a few others too but may not be related (but are in Madison Ky) on 7th of Apr Mathew Adams, on 18 of Apr lists a Walter Adams, 21 Apr Elizabeth Adams and on 22 Apr Feathergill Adams.

By the 1800 Kentucky Census, there are 5 George Adams in Kentucky

The following wills can be found and should be investigated. It is not know what, if any, the connection may be.

Wills: 1750 – 1825: Cumberland Co, PA

ADAMS, ABRAHAM. September 26, 1803. G. 4-6. willbkg.txt
ADAMS, JAMES. March 20, 1815. H. 316-317. willbkh.txt
ADAMS, JEAN. March 19, 1807. G. 200. willbkg.txt
ADAMS, ROBERT. October 21, 1802. F. 328-329. willbkf.txt
ADAMS, SAMUEL. March 13, 1823. I. 294-296. willbki.txt
ADAMS, THOMAS, Senr. 13 February 1782. D. 79. willbkc-d.txt
CULBERTSON, AGNESS. 20 February 1805. G. 107. willbkg.txt
CULBERTSON, JOHN. May 18, 1785. E. 46-47. willbke.txt
CULBERTSON, SAMUEL. April 4, 1807. G. 227. willbkg.txt
CULBERTSON, WILLIAM. April 20, 1785. E. 21. willbke.txt

This group above may include some of the Toboyne adams too as Perry was part of Cumberland as was Franklin.

Wills: 1721 – 1819: Lancaster Co, PA

ADAMS, GEORGE. — 1751.
ADAMS, JAMES. Twp. omitted. April 19, 1777.
ADAMS, RICHARD. Cocalico Twp. February 18, 1816.
ADAMS, SAMUEL. Cocalico Twp. May 7, 1798.
ADAMS, WILLIAM. Cocalico Twp. June 7, 1773.
ADAMS, WILLIAM. Cocalico Twp. December 6, 1774.

November 21, 1772 June 7, 1773
Wife. Anna Adams. Children: Isaac, Abraham, Samuel, Richard,
William and Adam. Grandchildren: John and William Witman. (parent's
names omitted)

————————————————————– ————————–

Toboyne Township, Perry/Cumberland County – Adams Cluster

I have some other circumstantial information that cannot be ignored connecting the Adams and Culbertson family together. It involves the scalping on August 14th 1776 in Isle Aux Nois of Robert Adams (1745-1776) and Joseph Culbertson (1753-1776) as documented during the Rev war in a Journal from a British soldier – British Invasion from the North – Lieutenant Digby’s Journal written during the war and published in 17?? – page 136.

Very few particulars of this distressing occurrence have come down to us. Robert Adams was the son of Thomas and Katherine Adams, and was born in 1745 in what was subsequently Toboyne township, in Cumberland county, Pennsylvania.  He was a soldier in the Bouquet expedition to the westward in 1764, and when the Revolution opened he raised a company of “Associators,” which formed the second company of Colonel William Irvine’s regiment, of which he was commissioned captain, January 9, 1776. Joseph Culbertson was the son of Alexander and Margaret Culbertson, and was born in 1753 in the Cumberland Valley. His ancestors came from the North of Ireland about the year 1730, subsequently locating about seven miles from what is now Chambersburg. Owing to several contiguous farms being owned by different members of the family, the place was known as “Culbertson’s Row.” Joseph was an early “Associator,” and received his commission as ensign in Captain Wilson’s company, January 9th, the same day that Adams received his. He had two brothers in the Pennsylvania line, Robert and Samuel, both officers. It would appear that Adams and Culbertson, in company with several other officers and men, on the 21st of June, crossed from their camp at Isle-aux-Noix to the western shore of the lake for the purpose of fishing, and not supposing any enemy to be in the vicinity, took no arms with them. Near the shore was the house of a Frenchman who sold spruce beer to the soldiers, a beverage which was not only refreshing, but supposed to possess medicinal virtues and very popular at this time. A small band of Indians, in which were two Canadians, were in ambush on the shore of the lake watching their movements, and surprised them while they were stopping at the Frenchman’s house to drink, killing Adams and Culbertson and two of their companions, not very broad, but the shore is such a swamp and so thick with wood, that you can scarce land, and those unbounded forests quite uninhabited, except by Indians and other savage beasts.

The Culbertson who was killed was related to Nancy Agnes Culbertson Adams (of Family A265), wife of John Adams (1769-1825) (Joseph Culbertson was her cousin) and my theory is the Adams was likely related too by association. You would probably skip company and grab some beers with your kin, right? When I looked up the Adams in the story he and his parents (Thomas and Katherine Adams) were from (Toboyne Township Cumberland County Pennsylvania – This is point A on the attached Map) it was 20 miles from the Culbertson Row location – Falling Springs now Orrstown, PA. Thomas could have easily been a brother to David and William Adams discussed above. I think that because RObert went to Ohio in 1764 this is what planted the idea in his brothers (in Toboyne) minds and some of their children moved to Ohio later on.

Here is more detail on some of the folks who were in the Indian attack discussed above.

Thomas Adams of Toboyne Township appears in the 1780 Tax list for Toboyne in Cumberland County PA along with a James, Robert, William Adams and a second William Adams.

This cluster of Adams is likely a significant find given their proximity to the Culbertson’s of Culbertsons Row in Falling Springs and the other cluster of Adams located in Guilford. I cannot yet determine if these are some of the same people in both locations.

1780 Tax list for Toboyne Township, Cumberland Pennsylvania
1780 Tax list for Toboyne Township, Cumberland Pennsylvania

Also in Early Assessments in Toboyne Township in 1767 there lists 5 Adams men: James, Thomas, Robert, William and William.

The fact that they all had an even 100 acres makes me wonder why. Was this some sort of  offering to get people to move back into the area after the Seven Years War?

Thes information below comes from History of That Part of The Susquehanna and Juniata Valleys, Embraced in The Counties of Mifflin, Juniata, Perry, Union and Snyder in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania; Volume II; Philadelphia; Everts, Peck & Richards; 1886; Page 963.

 Notes on Toboyne Township:   Among early warrants for land in Toboyne were:  John Wilson, 200 acres in 1755; John Rhea, 100 acres in 1767; John Thomas, 113 acres in Horse Valley, in 1765; William Wallace, 292 acres in 1765; John Watt, 209 acres in 1766 and 150 in 1767.  On this latter tract the first gristmill in what is now Toboyne Township was built in 1800, by Samuel Leaman.  Other early warrants were granted to John Glass, William Adams, John Jordan, Archibald Watts, John Farrier, Patrick and John Culbertson and Robert McKee.  Although the warrant of John Wilson, dated in 1755, is the earliest on record, yet there must have been others, as Wilson’s lands are described as being “bounded by those of John Watt, Joseph McClintock, Brown’s Run, Robert Morrow and Anthony Morrison.”

Some of the earlier homes were equipped with portholes, for use in case of an Indian attack. One of these was the house on the Thomas Adams farm, near New Germantown, in Toboyne Township, now owned by Milo N. W’illhide, its location being just south of Sherman’s Creek. – From Page 102 – History of Perry County

Robert and William Adams – Enlisted in Revolutionary war in Perry (then part of Cumberland) County 1777 in the Fifth Company.— Captain, Frederick Taylor; First Lieutenant, Daniel Hart; Second Lieutenant, Matthew McCoy; Ensign, Thomas Watson. – From Page 175 – History of Perry County

James Adams – Enlisted in war of 1812 in Captain David Moreeand’s Company.

Friday, November 17, 1820. The governor this day appointed and commissioned the following named persons to the office of justice of the peace in and for the districts hereafter mentioned in the county of Perry, that is to say : David Bloom, Robert Adams, and Jacob Bargstresser for the district composed of the township of Toboyne, in the said county, lately district number ten, in the county of Cumberland – Page 215

The first board of Perry county commissioners was composed of Robert Mitchell, Thomas Adams in 1821. Page 213

Toboyne Township was early an important location for tanneries.  The Adams tannery, located about two miles south of New Germantown, was the first one, being built before 1814, in which year Thomas Adams was assessed with it.  In 1824, it was burned to the ground.  It was assessed in 1835 in the name of James Adams, and was operated until about 1840. 

The above information was extracted from the book, History of Perry County Pennsylvania; H. H. Hain; Harrisburg; 1922

I’m wondering of these Adams could be some of the same that were in GUilford prior to the Seven Years War and moved to Toboyne when they came back to the area because there was an economic incentive to do so – for instance 100 Acres of land a piece – D.S.

 Index to Will Book A – 3/18/1820 –  4/1835
Perry County, PA

ad = letters of administration
w = will
Adams, Mary ad 23
Adams, Thomas w 324
Adams, William 521

Redstone, Washington PA Adams Cluster 1800

There appear 7 Adams Men in Redstone in 1800. Redstone is very near the cluster of Adams in Hopewell, Washington and Cross Creek also in Washington County PA. Redstone was also a primary port of departure on teh XXXX for flatboat travel down the Ohio.

They are:

  • James Adams
  • Alexander Adams – land warrant in Bedford 19th Jul 1793
  • Matthew Adams – appears to have a land warrant in Chanceford, York County 9th of Sep. 1788.
  • Hugh Adams –
  • Robert Adams – prob also with the Bedford Group
  • Solomon Adams – appears to have a land warrant in Bedford on the 29th Nov. 1787 and another on 13th Aug. 1794
  • Robert Adams Junior – land warrant in Bedford on 24 Sep. 1785 and 3rd Dec 1793
1800 Census - Redstone, Washington, PA - 7 Adams men
1800 Census – Redstone, Washington, PA – 7 Adams men


In Manallen Township in 1790 the same group of Adams appears to be there however this time with two widowed Adams wives. Manallen is just outside of Redstone (now Brownsville)

We have 7 Adams listed:

  • James Adams       1     1     4    –      –     (6 total)
  • Robert Adams      3     2     4    –      –     (9 Total)
  • Samuel Adams     2     4     5    –      –    (11 Total)
  • Matthew Adams   1     5     4    –     –   (8 Total)
  • Widow Adams      2     –      4     –     –     (6 Total)
  • James Adams jr.   1     1     1     –      –    (3 Total)
  • Widow Adams       1    –       5     –     –      a M Thoys or at M Thoms???  (6 Adams in total)

Field 1 – males under 16 over.  Field 2 is free white males over 16.  Field 3 is free white females.


  • There are two Matthew Adams still in Hopewell (Cumberland) on the 1790 Census. And two Matthew’s  still in Chester. And one Matthew in York. More likely a
  • There is one Samuel in Bucks, one in Franklin, and one in York in the 1790 Census
  • There are two Roberts in Bedford, one in Cumberland in 1790 Federal Census.
  • There are Two James in Hopewell, One in Fayette (Springhill), one in Mifflin, one in Franklin in the 1790 Federal Census
1790 Federal Census - Manallen Township Pennsylvania - Adams Group
1790 Federal Census – Manallen Township Pennsylvania – Adams Group

At first these appeared to be the same Adams cluster that is in Bedford in 1787. See Solomon, Robert, Robert Jr and Elijah below. There is also a John Adams who received a land Warrant in Bedford in 1787 as well. Not sure what happened to Elijah by 1800 as he isn’t with them in Redstone. On second thought these Bedford Adams may be different as there are still two Roberts in Bedford in 1790 Federal Census. So, my guess is that the Solomon, Elijah and Robert group is from a different family most likely.


Bedford, Bedford PA Adams Cluster 1787

There is only one Solomon Adams listed in the 1790 Census in PA and that is in Bedford. He moved there in 1785. I don’t think this cluster is related at this point. The appear to be in the Adams DNA project under Family Cluster 001A – Kit number 247416. The are also probably the same Elijah Adams in Kit number 213250 also in Family Cluster 001A. They have a Thomas Adams and Samuel also listed in that DNA Family Cluster.

1785 Jun 14th – Bedford, Bedford Township – Solomon Adams – Land Warrant – 50 acres

1787 Nov 29th – Bedford – Bedford Township – Solomon Adams – Land Warrant – 200 Acres

1787 Bedford Tax List - Solomon Adams et al
1787 Bedford Tax List – Solomon Adams et al

These MAY be connected to the Bedford Adams




As an aside, other early Adams in PA backcountry:

Thomas Adams and Halbert Adams listed in Daulphin County in 1750 on page 205, History and topography of Dauphin, Cumberland, Franklin , Bedford, Adams, Somerset, Cambria and Indiana counties.

John Adams on Page 360 in East Pennsboro in 1750 listed as a Freemen.

1776 Pennsylvania Map
1776 Pennsylvania Map
1795 Pennsylvania Map
1795 Pennsylvania Map
1799 Map of North Eastern United States



Misc notes

3/04/2012 from David to group re: Rev. Martin and ship from Belfast, Ireland to S.C:

The information below relates to Family A079 .

Here is a link to the book that some of this information about the Hopewell came from “Scotch-Irish Migration to South Carolina”.


3/05/2012 More information from David:

The information below relates to Family A079 .

Here is more information on the migration of that particular group of Scots-Irish.

I also found a source with a partial list of passengers (even though the site above says one doesn’t exist).

A Compilation of the Original Lists of Protestant Immigrants to South Carolina 1763-1773
Page 10 William Adams 1764
Page 121 Francis and Mary Adams
Page 122 Rachel Adams, John Adams and William Adams
Page 123 another Rachel Adams

It listed a lot of families on the ships. I just realized there are a lot of Craig family members but have not looked at that closely at the given names yet. There appears to be a James and William Craig. It is interesting to read all the stuff around the lists of people. So lists have ages but not those of the Adams. The immigrants were Scots-Irish, German and French.

You can see the index here and buy the entire book for $9.99 – probably a PDF.

This link should enable you to find it at a library near you


3/07/2012 From David on his family and the PA connection:

Yes, my John Adams (1769-1825) was from PA according to an article published in 1880 whose source was his son and grandson. He came down the Ohio around 1795 on a flat boat and ended up near Frankfort – Bridgetport Kentucky until 1818 when he moved to what would become Hawesville Kentucky eventually. Nancy Agnes Culbertson (1778-1843) was born in Franklin county PA according to the author of an extensive book covering the Culbertson family published in 1893.

I know very little about where John Adams (1769-1825) early life other than he came from PA but I do have some clues. I’ll share what I know.

John Adams married into the Culbertson family who lived “Culbertson’s” row Pennsylvania (now Rowe Run in Orrstown PN – point B on the attached map). That same family of Culbertson’s had three daughters (and one son) marry three Adams according to the author of the book I previously mentioned (see page 241 & 242 of Culbertson and Culberson Families). It also says that Nancy and John were cousins (perhaps via the Lindsay’s which implies several generations of travel/proximity together). The book says Nancy Culbertson’s Sister Jane ALSO MARRIED a John Adams and lived at Washington County PA. And Maria (another sister) Married a Mr. Adams, Scott Co, Ky.

I believe that the Culbertson, Adams and Lindsay families moved to Kentucky together and that their extended (and perhaps direct families) had dealings very early on in KY history. There were Adams and Lindsay in Kentucky as early as 1773 with 6 Adams and 5 Lindsay listed in the Kentucky Doomsday book (Boonesborogh and Fort Harrod). I’ll forward a summary of relevant info from that book under separate cover. My guess is that these men are likely related to our line of Adams.

When reading the book “A Compilation of the Original Lists of Protestant Immigrants to South Carolina, 1763-1773” (pages 67-70) I noted that there were many Lindsay’s on the ship the Hillsborough that landed in 1767 who are granted land in Belfast Township and/or Boonesboro SC (not KY). Francis Adams, Mary Adams, William Adams, John Adams and Rachel Adams from the ship Lord Dunlunce was granted Land in Jan 1773 (pages 121 and 122). Does anybody know the Boone Connection here? Why was this named Boonesboro SC?

The information above in S.C. relates to Family A079 .

I have some other circumstantial information that cannot be ignored connecting the Adams and Culbertson family together. It involves the scalping of an Adams and Culbertson as documented during the Rev war in a Journal from a British soldier – British Invasion from the North – Lieutenant Digby’s Journal page 136. The Culbertson who was killed was related to Nancy Agnes Culbertson Adams, wife of John Adams (1769-1825) (he was her uncle) and my theory is the Adams was likely related too by association. You would probably skip company and grab some beers with your kin right? When I looked up the Adams in the story he and his parents (Thomas and Katherine Adams) were from (Toboyne Township Cumberland County Pennsylvania – This is point A on the attached Map) it was 20 miles from the Culbertson Row location – Orrstown PA.

Culbertson’s Row was where Nancy Agnes Culbertson was born. Her mother was a Janet Jean Lindsay and her father Alexander Culbertson.

From an old note from someone Edna Whitley to my Great Grand mother: Shen mentions  “a Catherine Adams who was listed in the 1787 tax list and was paid by William Lindsay as administrator of widow Adams.” The author of the note speculates that perhaps the husband died in the battle of blue licks like his wife’s relative Joseph Lindsay.  It goes on to mention “Falling Springs in Franklin County Penn and the Adams Land joins the various Lindsay tracts on the old surveys. (this is point C on the attached map)” I have not seen any records to support anything from Edna Whitley above. But the information on Falling Springs is probably a pretty good lead. Blue licks participant list No Adams listed but that doesn’t mean he wasn’t there as many were not listed.

I think searching around these Lindsay leads, Culbertsons Row and that Adams lead in Toboyne Township and Falling Springs are the best leads we have for potential records.

My Nancy Agnes Culbertson and John Adams (1769-1825) had 5 boys – Alexander, James, William, David and Robert. I know nothing at all about Alexander and James. William and David I have VERY well documented for 4-5 generations down. Robert died at 18 years. I cannot locate anything on Alexander or James.

One of our newest members to group 33, Family A322 James Adams (1799-1879), shares the given names John, Alexander, James, Lindsay/Linsey and Robert. Granted they are common names but a Lindsey given name wow! Couple that with the Adams and Lindseys in SC in 1772. Double Wow I think.

Here is the kicker for me, why PA and SC? What’s the connection? Did the Adams originally come in to PA and by the time the ships in 1767 – 1772 got there the migration moved to SC instead of PA because there were better land deals? And from there that lead to the Adams and Lindsay’s in PA coming to KY in 1773? That would be a good location to head in via the Cumberland Gap . . . . now I’m digressing.


3/11/2012 More information from David on the PA family connection:

I think that family A033 (Suzanne Davis), A076 and A038 (Tim), and A322 (John and Linda) will be interested as I think these families are from the same cluster in PA and probably very closely related in terms of generations back.

I wanted to share some information about our ancestry. We are starting to really focus in on what seems to be migrations from Ireland and we are probably Scotch-Irish in origin meaning we are most likely Scottish but our ancestors were living in Northern Ireland for several generations prior to immigrating to America. Some of our oldest Adams lines in this group came from Ireland and started in Pensylvania (1750ish), Virginia and South Carolina (1772). I really wanted to start to understand why some of our group (specifically A079) – came in to South Carolina rather than Pennsylvania or VIrginia. In order to do that I had to revisit some books on the Scotch-Irish movement to America. I’ll summarize below. If you already know this, then feel free to disregard but it was refreshing form me to go over it again as I had forgotten most of it. Understanding this is key to solving the puzzle we have before us.

The following information comes from “The Scotch-Irish – A Social History by James G Leyburn 1962. Starting on Page 169

There were five great waves of emigration, with a lesser flow in intervening years.

1717-18 The first movement , so significant as a path opener had as its immediate cause the years of drought; but it was the opinion of Archibishop King and Dean Swift that not even the dire effects of bad  crops and high prices would have been enough to make the people move if they had not had the added goad of rack-renting, still such a novel practice that it caused intense resentment.  . . . in addition to the 5000 or so who went in 1717, there is no means of knowing how many other Ultermen left in this first wave.

1725-29. The second wave was so large that not merely friends of Ireland but even the English Parliament became concerned. Parliament appointed a commission to investigate the causes of the departures, for they had reached proportions that portended a loss of the entire Protestant element in Ulster. Letters of immigrants themselves spoke of rack-rents as the cause. The second wave had so well established the Scotch-Irish in the south eastern tier of counties in Pennsylvania that their influence even in political affairs in the Quaker commonwealth was becoming impressive.

1740-41. Famine struck Ireland in 1740 and was certainly the cause of the third large wave. An estimated 400,000 persons died in Ireland during 1740-41.  This wave marked on America side, the first movement of Scotch-Irish in any numbers beyond the confines of Generous Pennsylvania to the southwest  following the path through the Great Valley from Pennsylvania through Maryland,  Virginia down toward North and South Carolina.  (I believe this was the great Wagon Road).

1754-55. The fourth exodus had two major causes: effective propaganda from America and calamitous drought in Ulster. A succession of Governors of North Carolina had made a special effort to attract to that province colonists from Ulster and Scotland.

1771-75. Leases on the large estate of the Marquis of Donegal in county of Antrim expired, the rents were so greatly advanced that scores of tenants could not comply with the demands and so were evicted from farms their families had long occupied. During the next 3 years nearly a hundred vessels carraying as many as 25,000 passengers , all Presbyterian. The two years after that, nearly 30,000 protestants left Ulster.

Page 180 – Total Estimates of the great migration in the 58 years range from 200,000 to perhaps as many as 300,000.


Effects on settlements began 1717 1732 1740 1760
Steady inflow 1718 1736 1750 1761
First Frontier County Organized 1729 1738 1752 1769
First Inland Presbyterian church 1720 1740 1755 1764

An Aside note, what would become Franklin County (part of Cumberland County) PA was predominately Scotch Irish with a few German townships in 1751. John Adams and Nancy Culbertson’s ancesters occupied the area near Chambersburg at this time (it was called Falling Springs). Both were born there. I’m going to send more on this later as I think I have identified the family of my John Adams A265. I knew already that Nancy Culbertson’s family came from Antrim Ireland and that she and John Adams were cousins (making it likely the Adams are from Ireland as well). I believe is highly likely several of the families in family group 033 came from/through this area.

Page 252 – The Tidewater South, speaking on South Carolina. By 1763, when the province had become interested in attracting settlers into the up-country, a bounty was offered to stimulate immigration. This consisted of a “headright” of a hundred acres for each man, with fifty acres for each woman and child. (This means we can find out the family make up of the records in those ship logs by doing the math.) The government, moreover, supplied the arrivals with “The most indispensable implements of agriculture. This bounty was offered just as the Scotch-Irish from Pennsylvania and Virginia had reached the upper Piedmont by wa of North Carolina. There was a valid reason for sailing straight from Belfast to Charleston, instead of landing at Philadelphia and traversing the seven hundred miles of the Great Wagon Road. “Scare a ship sailed” from any port in Ireland for Charleston, we are told  “That was not crowded with men, women and children.”

Attached are a couple books I found about early Pennsylvania. You can download PDF versions of the books for free as they have no copyright on then any longer. Or you can order reprints of them from I downloaded and order copies for myself.

The history and topography of Dauphin, Cumberland, Franklin, Bedford, Adams, Perry, Somerset, Cambria & Indiana counties containing a brief history of the first settlers, notices of the leading events, incidents and interesting facts, both general and local, in the history of these counties, general & statistical descriptions of all the principal boroughs, towns, villages, &c., with an appendix …Comp. from authentic sources by I. Daniel Rupp …
Published 1848 by G. Hills in Lancaster city, Pa .

Chapter III is specifically about the Scotch Irish in Pennsylvania


History of Franklin county, Pennsylvania, containing a history of the county, its townships, towns, villages, schools, churches, industries…biographies: history of Pennsylvania, statistical and miscellaneous matter, etc. .. (1887)

Starting on this page (140) is good place to begin reading.

This week, I made what I think is a pretty big find. Sorry this isn’t really polished up and very raw data but finding all these Adams next to the Culbertson and Lindsay is a really big deal – in particular to my family group A265 as well as A0076, A038, A037 (due to southern migration down the valley given the dates) and A322 (has a Lindsay given name and migration path/timing is right for Virginia in 1799 ) and perhaps more. Becky this should be interesting to you as well but I think your connection to these families is probably back in Ireland from 1700-1740. I think what has happened my Adams (and perhaps yours) were part of the 3rd migration wave from from Ireland in 1740-1741 while Becky and Richards Adams were part of the 5th wave from 1771-1775.

I have attached 3 files.

is my Pedigree so you can see what my line looks like.

1799 map of Pennsylvania. Chambersburg (Falling Spings and Culbertson’s Row) is right above Hagerstown Maryland right in the center of the very south of Pennsylvania.

Notes from Franklin County PA Research.
John Adams (1769-1825) married Nancy Agnes Culbertson (1778-1843). She was from Culbertson’s Row near Falling Springs Pennsylvania. They were reported to be cousins (by Lindsay see attached Pedigree). She had two sisters also marry Adams men. Nancy Agnes mother was Jean Lindsay (1747-1794) and she was married to Alexander Culbertson (1747-1790). Nancy Agnes Grandfather was John Lindsay Jr.  (1709-1799). Alexander’s father Samuel Culbertson (1719-1789) was from Ballygan City Antrim, Ireland. He was married to Janet Shields in 1737 in Ireland. I believe he came to America with his brothers around 1741 (see attached documents). He served under Colonel Mercer and was at Fort Duquesne in 1759.

John and Nancy Adams children were:

  • Alexander (died at 26 in New Orleans)
  • James (no information other than that he existed – would have lived in Bridgeport Kentucky near Frankfort)
  • William Adams (1798-1888)
  • David Adams (1800-1894)
  • Robert Adams (1802-1820) died of yellow fever

In searching the Franklin County archives more closely I have made the following discoveries.

History of Franklin county, Pennsylvania, containing a history of the county, its townships, towns, villages, schools, churches, industries…biographies: history of Pennsylvania, statistical and miscellaneous matter, etc. .. (1887) Bates, Samuel Penniman, 1827-1902. [from old catalog]; Richard, Jacob Fraise, 1844- [from old catalog];

Page 152
In Greene the oldest warrant found was that of Joseph Culbertson, in 1744. Alexander Culbertson had one dated 1749. Their neighbors at the time were John Neal, William Carr, Reuben Gillespie, John Stump. This settlement was known as Culbertson’ s Row.

Pape 153 – TAXABLES’ NAMES, 1751 AND 1752.

In Antrim – Widow Adams
In Guilford – William Adams and John Lindsay

The history and topography of Dauphin, Cumberland, Franklin, Bedford, Adams, Perry, Somerset, Cambria & Indiana counties : containing a brief history of the first settlers, notices of the leading events, incidents and interesting facts, both general and local, in the history of these counties, general & statistical descriptions of all the principal boroughs, towns, villages, &c., with an appendix … (1848)

Tax List: 1751, Parts of Cumberland County, which are now Franklin Co:  PA

Early Tax Lists as given in “The History and Topography of Dauphin,

Cumberland, Franklin, Bedford, Adams and Perry Counties”  by I. Daniel Rupp,

Gilbert Hills and Pub, Lancaster, 1846.


List of taxables in areas (of Cumberland) that are now part of Franklin

County, page 458-460.

Lurgan Township, 1751 *

Alexander Culbertson

Joseph Culbertson

James Culbertson

Oliver Culbertson

Samuel Culbertson


Peter Township, 1751***

Robert Culbertson


Antrim Township, 1751**

Wid. Adams


Guilford Township, 1751****

Wm Adams

James Lindsey

John Lindsay


1786 Taxables list for Franklin Co. PA – Antrim Township

“History of Franklin County, PA”  Warner, Beers & Co. 1887

William Adams      PP. 458-460.


While labled 1786, the list is for the year 1751.

Robert Culbertson  pp. 568-9 Peters Township, Cumberland [Franklin] Co, PA

1786 Listing: Fannett Township, Franklin Co, PA

Adams, Joseph


1790 Franklin County PA Archives Census

May include Antrim, Greene, Guilford, Lurgan, Southampton and Washington Townships

which are not listed as in Part II.  Includes remainder of Franklin County not in

Part II per the enumerator, Thomas Johnston, transcribed March 30, 1791.

Totals for Part I Cols.

A  2159  Free white males 16 and over

B  2035  Free white males under 16

C  3935  Free white females including heads of household

D    145  All other free persons

  178  Slaves


TOTAL 8452 [includes 3 additional other free persons found on verification]


Page       A       B       C       D       E

Adams             John          282       1        4       2 

Adams             David         286       2        2       3

Adams             Wm            289       1                1

Adams             Jas             271       1                2

Culberson         Jas            280       2       1       5

Culberson         Saml         280       4        6       4

Culberson         Jas           280       1        6       2

Culberson         Joseph     280       2        2       7       2       2

Culberson         John         283       1        5       4       0       1

Culberaon         Jean         289       1        3       7       1       1

Lindsey           Jas             287       4        1       7

Nancy Agenes Culbertson’s father Alexander Culbertson (1747-1790). Alexander’s brothers were Samuel (1738-1814), John (1740-1797), Robert Culberson (1741-1778) and Joseph (1743-1801). Alexander Culbertson’s (1747-1790) was Jean Lindsey Culbertson listed above.  There is no doubt this is John Adams wife’s family prior to their migration to KY in 1795/96.

Page 292  William Findlay’s Return of part of Franklin County


Transcribed March 7, 1891


Adams             Samuel        311        1       3       1

Adams             William       321          3       1       3

Culbertson       Allexander    319       1       4       3

Culbertson       Samuel        321        3       1       5       0       1



And last but not least is Robert Adams (1745-1776) and Joseph Culbertson (1753-1776) who were scalped together at Isle-aux-Noix. Their parents were Thomas and Katherine Adams from Toboyne township Cumberland PA and Alexander and Margaret Culbertson from Culbertson’s row.

3/12/2012 from David to group:

Unfortunately Chambersburg is the only courthouse in the north razed and burned by the south during the Civil War.

If we find records it will be in Cumberland or Lancaster county seat, have not found out where that is located yet but it should be easy enough to find. It couldn’t hurt to call Chambersburg but I am not holding on to any hope of finding anything.

3/12/2012 from Tim to David:

Do you think it would do any good to look into Presbyterian Church’s records for PA? I would not know where to start but that could give us more information.

3/12/2012 from David to Tim:

Yes, it is a great idea. Also, my John Adams and sons were Freemasons. There is a temple in Chambersburg that I thought I might check as well.

3/13/2012 from David to group:

I’ve actually learned some more very compelling inform regarding the Lindsays from Chambersburg PA. They are related to the Adams by way of John Adams (1769-1825) wife Nancey Agnes Culbertson (1778-1843) in family group A265. They appear to be in Kentucky as early as 1775 along side some Adams with the names of Samuel, David and William. Those Adams appear to have been from Virginia (but they could have migrated from PA to Virginia – who knows).  Samuel Adams whose father was William Adams, according to the documentation from the link below, was from Ulster Ireland. BTW, there are McCown and McAfee in Chambersburg too (a Robert McAfee but listed in 1814). Samuel Adams, ended up in Indiana early which is why we start to find some Adams there, as you will see according to the notes on findgrave.

Check this out:

So why is this Samuel Adams important? I don’t entirely know for sure yet but . . . . my intuition tells me he and his family are very important our group.

Samual Adams and Robert McAfee explored KY very early. The following is from THE MCAFEE FAMILY: Pioneers Researched, written and edited By Paul K. McAfee in 1962. It appears based on Kentucky Doomsday book records there were many other Adams, McCown and McAfee’s on this trip in addition to a David, William and Samuel Adams as evidenced by the listings put forth above. From Page 12 of The McAfee Family:

In 1771 the family council was held and it was decided that James, George, and Robert in company with James McCoun, Jr., and Samuel Adams, a cousin of James McCoun, would constitute a party to explore Kentucky. On reaching the Kanawha River, the constructed two canoes and descended the river, meeting Captain Bullitt’s company and that of Hancock Taylor at the mouth of the same river, promptly joining them. On the 22nd of June 1773, they arrived at the mouth of the Limestone, (now Maysville) and from the point Robert McAfee made his excursion through the contiguous country alone. He went up Limestone Creek and discovered the north fork of the Licking River, passed through the country now forming Mason County, and then went down the Licking River for some distance, veering northward through what is now Bracken county and on to the Ohio River. He made a bark canoe and launching it on the Ohio, he soon overtook his company at the mouth of the Licking River, where Covington now stands. McAfee’s daring won the admiration of his companions, and by them he was given the title of “Commodore.” . . . .

July 4th they visited Big Boone Lick, where they were interested and occupied themselves in making seats and tent poles from the enormous bones of the Mastodon found there in large numbers. At the mouth of the Kentucky River, Hancock Taylor and the McAfees resolved to ascend the river. They went as far as Drennon Creek, now in Henry County, and there parted. The McAfees and companions continued their journey along the course of that stream until they came to the site of Frankfort (what would be frankfort anyway!), the state capitol.

Joseph, James, and William Lindsay on page 156 of the KY Doomsday book (see below in red) appear to be uncles to Nancy Agnes Culbertson Adams wife of my John Adams (1769-1825). They are listed as awarded claims to land in Kentucky in 1776 in the Kentucky Doomsday Book. According to Dr. Lewis Culbertson’s book ( – page 241) published in 1923 as Jospeh, James, WIlliam and Henry, brothers of Janet “Jean” Lindsay Culbertson (who was Nancy Agnes Culbertson Adams mother), and they went to Kentucky in 1775. That would but them in KY at the same time in the same place as the Samuel Adams listed above and the William, David and Samuel Adams (same person) listed below in the Ky Doomesday book. There is also a George, James and Eli Adams in the Doomsday book as well.

The area they were in near Frankfort is where I first find my John Adams (1769-1825). It was called Bridgeport Kentucky and is about 3 miles outside of Frankfort in 1797 Tax list of Franklin County Kentucky, John Adams had 50 acres of land in the South Benson valley (Bridgeport). Which is where John Adams son (WIlliam) first wife, Lucy Ann Pattie, happens to be buried in the Lower Benson Presbyterian Church Graveyard. The 1795 Census of Kentucky – 1991 (Page 2) there is also a John Adams listed. This is probably the same John because in 1794 Franklin County was part of Mercer county. This census was complied from tax records so it could be a timing issue of data collection and publishing.

KY Doomsday Book entries:

  • William Adams – Page 24 – 400 Acre plus a 1000 acre bonus tract of land lying on both sides of the Salt River joining George McAfee’s land and planting crops at Boonsborough in 1775.
  • David Adams – Page 25 – 400 acres plus 1000 acre bonus tract of land about ¼ above Fort Liberty on Salt river and raising corn in 1776.
  • Samuel Adams – Page 26 – 1000 Acres of land lying on both sides of the Salt River joining John McGee’s land and improving the land in 1776. Signed by William Fleming, Edmund Lyme and James Barbour
  • Robert McAfee – Page 20 – 100 acres of land on Town Fork and Salt River including McAfee’s upper station at Boons borough in 1775.
  • William McAfee – Page 21 – Tract of 400 acres land lying on Salt River joining lads where Harrodsburg is built to the north west in 1776
  • James McCown – Page 22 – Tract of 1000 acres land lying on Salt River between lands claimed by George and James McAfee in 1776.
  • Robert McAfee – Page 22 – Tract of 400 acres about ¾ miles below McAfee’s Station called Fort Liberty in 1775.
  • James McAfee – Page 23 – 400 acre tract of land laying on both sides of the Salt River  joing James McCown’s in 1775 and planting crops in 1776.
  • George McAfee – Page 23 – 400 and 1000 acres tract on both sides of the salt river joining the lower side of James McCowns in 1775.
  • Sam McAfee – Page 24 – 400 and 1000 acres tract on both sides of the salt river joining the lower side of James McAfee in 1775.
  •  John McAfee – Page 24 – 1000 acres of land on both sides of Salt River joining lands claimed by Sam McAfee improved in 1775
  • James Curry – Page 25 – Land on both sides of the Salt River joining the land of Rober and Willima McAfee by improving said lands in 1775 and bearing corn in 1776.
  • James McCoun Page 43
  • John McCoun – Page 44
  • Joseph Lindsay – Page 156
  • James Lindsay – Page 156 – James Lindsey this day claimed a preemption of 1000 acres of land at the state???? In the district of Kentucky by a large springs near the mouth of Lindsey Run looking off the south fork of Elkhorn beginning about a mile below the s Spring th??? Esternardly for quantity by and l???? improving the same in the year of 1776 by building a cabin of satisfactory proof being mad to the court they are of the opinion that the said Lindsey has a right to preempt  of 100 acres of land to include the able location
  • William Lindsay – Page 156 – Page 156 – William Lindsey by James Lindsey this day claimed preempt of 1000 acres of land at the state ??? in the District of Kentucky lying on Lindseys run by??? The forks of a branch  ????/
  • Author Lindsay – Page 157
  • Fulton Lindsay – Page 157
  • George Adams – Page 172
  • William Curry – Page 223
  • James Adams – Page 294
  • Eli Adams – Page 294

I feel like these Adams are ours.

I found a land patent today in Jefferson County Virginia (Kentucky) 26 Dec 1782 from Francis Adams to Benjamin Adams. I thought of Becky and Richard.The transfer to Benjamin was in Sept 18th 1805. Francis originally secured it on Dec 26th 1782.

Jefferson County – 1782

Attached is an excel file containing all the Adams, Lindsay and Culbertson I could find listed in the 1790 Census of KY. It was reconstructed from Tax Lists. I also loaded in the same families from the KY Doomsday Book and a few select other records to help me. Because this is so early on, I thin the pusdo family groups I have created might be important. I grouped based on proximity to each other and in relation to the early entry people from the Doomsday book.

Family Group A135 and A322 should be interested in this as there is a Francis, Hugh and William Adams together in 1789 in Jefferson County.

As you look at this list remember that most of the families came in from PA, VA and NC. And some probably migrated from here to IN, OH or perhaps TN.

More notes from David:

No evidence to back up any of this stuff on his site but directionally this person ended up in roughly the same place. I noticed he found Samuel Clark Adams (and his father William) who immigrated to VA and went to KY and the IN. He notes the McAfee was a party of 10, that would match my Doomsday listings better as William, David and Samuel singed 3 consecutive pages at the same time 24, 25 and 26. They were there with Samuel Clark Adams. I’ve got to dig in to this family a lot more.

I think it seems logical that we are most likely Scottish who ended up as part of “the Plantation ” system in to Ulster since our ancestors seem to all be Presbyterian. This isn’t much of a stretch and is probably true. But I think there is more to the story.

I’ve often wondered based on the genetic distance between us and the English Adams and the matches globally we may have been in Spain before Scotland. In fact, we may have been in the south of France/Normandy and originally followers of Calvin forced to move to England/Scotland or be killed by the French.

How’s that for a pattern:

  • English make us a buffer to Scots
  • Scots make us a buffer to the Irish in Ulster
  • And in the colonists we became a buffer from the Indians.

We accept the role because it is in our DNA.

More on Gen, David Adams:

rom Page 102 – History of Perry County

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