In 1989 I published a book The Foster Family of Flanders, England, and America all copies have long been sold only a few remain for my grandchildren. However, I have kept and added to the genealogical portion of the Foster family. At the last count I had identified over 31,000 individuals directly kin or kin through marriage to the original Robert and Elizabeth Garnett Foster family.
The name of our Foster immigrant came to me very early in my search his name, Richard Foster. |
This Richard Foster came to American in 1635 on the ship Safety. He was the son of Sir Robert Foster and a wife identified as Miss Isham, daughter of John Isham. This information was given to me originally from Richard Foster of Alexandria, Virginia, a distant cousin whose wife was also a Foster. He had hired a professional genealogist from Atlanta, Georgia to help his wife obtain membership into the Colonial Dames. This genealogist, Mrs. Julian Lane, came up with this Richard Foster as her Foster Immigrant then, of course, as ours.
For a number of years I did not question nor ask for documentation of the status of Richard Foster as my immigrant. Many years ago I became acquainted with Captain Ed Dittmer, whose wife was a Foster descendant. Ed was in Navel Intelligence stationed at the pentagon and on several occasions had reasons to be in San Antonio. On two of these trips he gave me a call and came over to College Station for a visit. Ed was doing Foster, Garnett, and Golding research in the original colonial county records. It was he who we give credit for identifying the children of Robert and Elizabeth Garnett Foster of Gloucester and Essex Counties in Virginia. It was he who first made me stop and evaluate the records where Richard and his wife, Sussan Garnett, lived. I began to look for information that would substantiate Richard Fosters status as the immigrant of the large and important southern Foster family. The more I examined the records the more confused I became.
After reviewing extensively the records of Lower Norfolk County, Virginia from early 1600 to the 1700s looking for proof of our Foster immigrant , I am still not certain who he is. Please read the article and let me know your thoughts.
Let us exam just what has been documented on Richard Foster, Immigrant. We know that he came to the Virginia Colonies in 1635 aboard the ship, Safety and on
the same ship was his stepfather, Bartholomew Hoskins. Bartholomew had married his mother, Mrs. Dorcas Foster on July 3, 1624 in St. Dunstans Church, in
Tepney, London, England. The records show that she was a widow with several children. One of his siblings was a sister, Ann with a brother, Robert as a
We know that in Lower Norfolk County, Virginia there were at least three Richard Fosters in the same time span. One of these Richard Fosters was an attorney and would marry Dorcas Hoskins, daughter of Bartholomew and Mrs. Dorcas Foster Hoskins. It is this Richard Foster who was a member of the House of Burgess for Lower Norfolk County. It was this Richard Foster that was called Lieutenant, Captain and then Major. It was this Richard Foster who would move with his father-in-law, Bartholomew Hoskins, and brother-in-law, Richard Hoskins, to Albermarle, North Carolina. Consequently one Richard Foster was a son-in-law to Bartholomew Hoskins and another was a stepson. No wonder there was confusion. Both of these Richard Foster were literate. There is at least one other who was illiterate and used the (W) as his signature. One of the three Richard Fosters would marry Ann Jackson on November 16, 1640 and father a child conceived out of wedlock. It is difficult to tell which one of the Richards did the dirty deed. Regardless it has but little bearing on the identification of the true immigrant. These are just a few of the essential documented facts concerning the three Richard Fosters of Lower Norfolk County, Virginia.
There are numerous citings of the marriage of Richard Foster to Sussan Garnett, daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth Garnett. I have found no documentation of this marriage nor has anyone else that I have been able to contact. This does not mean it did not happen it just means that we cannot prove or disprove it. We do know that her name was not Susanna, Susannah, or Susanna (Ann) as has been reported. Some have tried to make Ann and Sussan the same person by naming her Sussanah and calling her Ann. If you read the original muster roll taken after the great Indian massacre it is spelled, Sussan. Her name was probably Susanna but the roll taker spelled it phonetically, thus Sussan.
The marriage date of Richard and Sussan has been reported to be in 1641 give or take a few years. As in most cases we could expect their first child in 1642 or 1643 and then a child thereafter every two years. However, it has been documented that this Richard Foster went to England in 1649 for a five-year period. He returned in 1654. Did he take his wife and family with him to England? There are no records that have been found to show that he did or did not. Did he have children before he left for England and while he was in England? These are just some of the things that we do not know about Richard Foster.
There have been numerous reports as to the number and names of Richard and Sussans male children. They number range from two (Robert and John) to seven (Robert, John, Richard, James, George, Thomas, and William.) However, Robert and John are the only ones for which we have documentation. This does not mean that the others did not exist it only means that we have documentation for only two. Robert Foster the first ancestor for which we have documentation was born between 1651 and 1660 in Kingston Parish, Gloucester County, Virginia. We know little to nothing about his younger life. He married Elizabeth in the early 1680s in Gloucester County, Virginia. The preponderance of evidence is for Elizabeth being a Garnett whose father or brother was John Garnett. The Garnetts and Fosters were close neighbors both living in Gloucester County. In 1692 Robert Foster, his brother, John Foster, and Roberts brother-in-law, John Garnett along with several other families bought adjacent land in Essex County, Virginia near the Rappahannock River. It was here in St. Anns Parish on Gilsons Run (presently called Mount Landing Creek) that Robert and Elizabeth lived and would raise their large family of eleven children.
Robert Foster died testate in Essex County in 1715/16. His widow, Elizabeth married Robert Charlesworth before 1721. It was in that year that she and her underage children would move with her new husband to King William County, now Caroline County. By 1742 we find the family had moved to Amelia County to live beside some of Elizabeths grown children. It is in Amelia County along Stock Creek that Elizabeth died and is buried.
|All of Robert and Elizabeth Fosters children are named in his will probated in February 1715/16. From the document we know that Robert, Jr. was their oldest child as he received the land and plantation house where the family lived, primogeniture was English tradition. The plantation was located on land acquired after 1710. Robert, Sr. however made the provision that his mother (Robert, Jr.s mother) could live on the land for five or six years. (For those that report that Roberts first wife was Sarah Biggs can see clearly from the will that Robert Sr. was only married once to Elizabeth Garnett for the will states clearly Robert, Jr. inherited the land, however his mother was to have use of it.) James and John were the next oldest sons as they inherited the remainder of the land with James having his choice. The first daughter was Barbara who had married Richard Loving.|
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1. Robert Foster, Jr. was born ca. 1685 in Gloucester County, Virginia and moved with his parents to Essex County, Virginia when he was yet a young boy. There he grew to manhood and married Ann Lloyd, daughter of George and Joanna Lloyd in 1719. She was born ca 1682 and died after 1785 (not sure of this death date.) After the death of his father, Robert, Jr. inherited the plantation and land on which his parents had lived. It seems likely that he lived with his parents and then with his widowed mother until her marriage to Robert Charlesworth. He then took over the plantation, married (ca 1720) and looked forward to a productive life. It was not to be. The cause of Robert, Jr.'s death we do not know, however, like his father he must have been fore-warned as he had time to make his will. He died ca. 1720
He left his entire estate to his wife, Ann. They had no children. Ann later married George Pettit and sold her dower rights to the land to her husband's younger brother, John
2. James Foster had always been assumed to be the second child with his estimated birth date being 1686 in Gloucester County. In Robert Foster Sr.'s will he left James and his brother John two parcels of land one containing 75 acres and the other 125 acres with James to have his choice. James chose the smaller parcel (it may have contained the original plantation home and out buildings - only a guess.) When Robert, Jr. died one would expect the next oldest, James, to be the heir at law of the inheritance. However, John the younger brother became heir at law indicating that possibly James had died (and explains the scarcity of records for James.) The other explanation could have been that John was the second child and that James was the third.
Regardless, James sold his inheritance to William Taylor in 1718. On March 17, 1718 Elizabeth Foster Charlesworth widow of Robert Foster, Sr. appeared in Essex County court and relinquished her right of dower to the 75 acres tract of land north of Gilson's Run which had been bequeathed to James Foster by his father. The deed was dated December 12, 1718. Even though Elizabeth had witnessed the original deed from her son, James to William Taylor three months earlier, she was still required to relinquish her dower right to the land.
Information has come to me from descendants of a James Foster and they believe he was the son of Robert and Elizabeth Garnett Foster. If this be the case and James did live and marry twice (Elizabeth and Martha) and left descendants we are at a loss as to why John and not James became heir at law for the inheritance unless James was simply younger than John. It appears that additional research is needed into this elusive James. I will give the family of James with the understanding this information has not been documented and may not be accurate.
James Foster born ca 1679 - 89 in Gloucester Co., VA; died ca. 1749 Amelia Co., VA married (1) Elizabeth (2) Martha. Martha was born ca 1690 in Virginia.
Children of James and Martha Foster:
1. Thomas - no other information
2.George Foster was born 1713 Gloucester Co., VA; died 1772 VA; married ca 1747 Gloucester or Amelia Co., VA Mary Forrest, daughter of Abraham and Judith Forrest; She died after 1773
3. James Foster born before 1718 - no other information
3. John Foster was the next child of Robert and Elizabeth Garnett Foster; he was the third of eight sons and three daughters. As a near-middle child he was probably more influenced by his older brothers than his parents. He, most likely, grew up quickly and independently. We know that he went to school, as he was literate. His birth has been set between 1681 and 1689 in Gloucester County, Virginia prior to his parent's removal to Essex County.
John married Isabella (Golding?) prior to 1721 in Essex County for it was this year that he and Isabella bought land in Spotsylvania County where they lived until 1741. They moved in that year to a plantation that John had purchased in western Orange County, Virginia on Beaverdam and Marsh Runs. Isabella is thought to be a sister or daughter of John Golding of Essex County, but this has not been proven. John Golding is thought to be the father of William Golding who married John's younger sister, Elizabeth. Remember, John was deeded 125 acres of land by his father (James chose the 75 acre plot). However he sold this land to his mother and her new husband, Robert Charleswood, as she was required by the will to turn over the plantation on which she lived to her son, Robert, Jr. heir at law of Robert Foster Sr.
John then became heir at law of the land deeded to his older brother, Robert Foster, Jr., when he died, leaving the land to his wife. He purchased the land and plantation from Ann Lloyd Foster, his sister-in-law, for 25 pounds sterling. John then sold the land and plantation house to James Ridgeport. Now, needing a place to live, he purchased on December 2, 1721, 84 acres of land from Robert King in Spotsylvania County and from all indications, John, Isabella and their family moved into the plantation house. By this time John and Isabel were the parents of two and possibly three children: Sarah, Thomas, and John, Jr.
John Foster must have been quite active in politics as his name is mentioned a number of times in the activities of Spotsylvania County: witnessing deeds, wills, and serving for several years as deputy sheriff. In 1733 John received a land grant of 599 acres in what is now Culpeper County. More than likely John and Isabella retained their home in Spotsylvania County for they were still living there in 1735 when he sold the 599 acres of land to John Rucker that he had patented in Culpeper County. At the time of the sale of this land his wife, Isabella was "so sickly and impotent" that she could not travel to the seat of Orange County to waive her dower rights to the land. They had to send three commissioners to her home to interview her and make sure she had agreed to the sale, which of course, she had.
By 1735 John and Isabella had two and possibly three other children: Philadelphia, Anthony, and possibly Judith. If there were other children they have not been identified or possibly had died. Even though John and Isabella were living in Spotsylvania County they had begun to purchase land in Orange County. John had started to buy land in Orange County as early as 1734 or 1735. In 1734 Thomas, oldest son of John and Isabella, was apparently not of legal age to own land, which was 21 years, for in that year he and his father co-patented 1000 acres of land in what is now the eastern portion of Orange County. The land was located between Berry's Run and Riga Run. William Wolford had originally patented the land, however his patent had lapsed due to his not making sufficient improvements. It appears that John Foster may have patented this land for his son Thomas to improve and develop as a plantation. One can assume that the land or a portion of it had been put into cultivation, for even though John and Isabella had not moved to Orange County, John was there on several occasions witnessing deeds. It is possible that his son, Thomas Foster, was living on the land and attending to it clearing and cultivation. Thomas was not yet married.
On November 26, 1740 John and Thomas Foster made an application to the Orange County Court for an evaluation of the improvements that had been made on this 1000 acres of land. Andrew Harrison, Henry, Isabel and George Smith returned a report to the Orange County Court on May 28, 1741, giving a value of L164-6s-8p which included "the cost of 16 journey of 16 miles (from their home in Spotsylvania County) for corn and salt and of 4,000 nails brought from Northumbeland County, one dwelling house, one small dwelling, 480 fruit trees, twelve acres of cleared ground, 280 panels of fence with nine logs to each panel."
During 1739 and 1740 John and Isabella started selling off their holdings in Spotsylvania County in the preparation of a move to Orange County in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. On May 28, 1741 John Foster bought from Joseph Phillips of Orange County a tract of 490 acres of land between March and Beaverdam Run in the Far West end of the present day Orange County near the boundary of Greene County. Moving with John and Isabella were their son Thomas and his wife, Ann (he had married Ann Garnett in 1741) and their daughter, Philadelphia and her husband, John Snell, (John Foster had witnessed in 1740 a purchase of land by his son-in-law, John Snell.)
In 1745 John and Thomas Foster sold the 1000 acres of land they patented in 1734 and improved upon in Orange County to James Garnett, brother to Ann Garnett Foster. Actually, they had resold the land as in 1738 they had sold the land to George Street, however it reverted back to them when Mr. Street was unable to make payment. Since this deed was acknowledged by both of their wives (Isabel Foster and Ann Foster) by their relinquishment of the dower rights to the land, it proves that Thomas Foster was married to Ann Garnett prior to February 1744. Since Thomas' oldest child, Sarah was born ca. 1743 according to her will, it is certain that Thomas Foster was only married once and was never married ca. 1743 to an Elizabeth Smith in Middlesex County as had been erroneously claimed by some Foster researchers. Ann Foster was the only wife of Thomas Foster and the mother of his eleven children.
Isabella Foster died sometime after June 4, 1747, for it was on this date that she and her husband John Foster along with John Haskew and his wife, Rachel, sold jointly to John Coffee of Spotsylvania County a tract of land in Orange County containing 137 acres. (100 acres was taken from John Foster's tract of 337 acres and 37 acres were taken from Haskew's land.) This land was located on Beaverdam Run and was part of the land that John Foster bought from Zachary Taylor in 1740. This was the last appearance of Isabella in the records of Orange County.
In Orange County, like in Spotsylvania, John Foster continued to be politically active with frequent references in county records witnessing deeds and wills of neighbors, providing security bonds, serving on juries and viewing routs of public roads. The last entry of John Foster in Orange County records was in 1760. As to date no will has ever been found for John Foster. He either died in 1760 as some have recorded or was infirm shortly after or moved away from Orange County to live with one of his children until his death.
John Foster born ca 1689 Gloucester Co., VA; died after 1760; married ca 1711 Isabella (Golding?) Essex Co., VA. She was born ca 1695 Virginia, daughter of John and Mrs. Cassandra Woods; died after 1740 Orange Co., VA
Sarah Foster was born ca 1714 Essex Co., VA; died ca 1801 Nelson Co., KY; married ca 1733 Essex Co., VA Thomas Crutcher, Jr. He was born ca 1706 Essex Co., VA; died June 1786 Caroline Co., VA
Thomas Foster was born ca 1715 Essex Co., VA; died 1791 Orange Co., VA; married ca 1741 Essex Co., VA Ann Garnett, daughter of Salvador and Elizabeth Muscoe Garnett. She was born ca 1720 Essex Co., VA; died after 1891 Orange Co., VA
Thomas Foster son of John and Isabella (Golding?) Foster was born ca 1715 in Essex County, Virginia and moved with his parents in 1721 to Spotsylvania Co., VA.
Their plantation was on the south side of the Po River. It was on this plantation that he grew into a man. While Thomas was not of legal age (age to witness, etc.) his father and he patented 1000 acres of land in 1743 in eastern Orange County on Riga Run just south of what is today, Unionville, Virginia. It is to be assumed that the land was improved by Thomas and his father, and as before mentioned, was probably to be the home of Thomas when he became of age and married or it could have been bought as an investment. However, Thomas and his father sold the improved land, all one thousand acres, to James Garnett of Essex County, Virginia. Thomas Garnett is thought to be Thomas Foster’s brother-in-law. It has been mentioned before, but should be reiterated again that since the deed was acknowledged by both John and Thomas’ wives (Isabel and Ann) by their relinquishment of their dower rights to the land, it proves that Thomas Foster was married to Ann Garnett prior to February 1744, and since Thomas’ oldest child, Sarah was born ca 1743, according to her will, it is certain that Thomas Foster was married only once and was never married to Elizabeth Smith in Middlesex County, Virginia as has been mistakenly claimed by some Foster researchers. Ann Garnett was the only wife of Thomas Foster and the mother of all eleven of his children.
In 1741 Thomas Foster was granted a patent for 400 acres of land in Spotsylvania County “amongst the branches of the Mattapony River,” but on May 1, 1744, less than three months after he and his father had sold the 1000 acres of land on Riga Run in St. Thomas Parish, Orange County, Virginia, Thomas sold this 400 acres. In the sale he gave his residence as “of St. Mark’s Parish, Orange County,” thus indicating that he was then living in that part of Orange County north of the Rapidan River that is now Culpeper County. This move is proven by a lease dated three weeks later on May 23, 1744, when Thomas and Ann leased a plantation of 150 acres on the north side of the Rapidan River in St. Mark’s Parish Orange County, Virginia (which is now Culpeper County) from the executors of the estate of the former royal governor, Alexander Spotswood. These 150 acres were a part of the 40,000-acre land patent called the “Spotswood Tract.”
Thomas and Ann Foster continued to live on this plantation in Culpeper County. They paid an annual rent of 800 lb. of tobacco until 1757. In was in that year that Thomas and Ann bought a plantation consisting of 975 acres of land on Mill Run. Mill Run is a tributary of Mount Run in St. Thomas Parish, in the eastern portion of Orange County. It was here that Thomas and Ann continued to raise their children and it was here that both died and are buried. After their move back to Orange County close neighbors of Thomas and Ann Foster were the Jones family; Hugh and Elizabeth Jones. Elizabeth’s family name has not been positively identified. Morton is a possibility and there are those that believe that she was a Foster – daughter of Robert and Elizabeth Garnett Foster. Further research is needed to positively identify her. Apparently Elizabeth died and Hugh remarried a Cathy as she was named in his will. Her family name is also unidentified. Apparently Elizabeth was the mother of all of Hugh’s children. Three Jones sons and a daughter, George, Morton, Benjamin and Frances married three daughters and one son of Thomas and Ann Foster – Phoebe, Frances, Elizabeth and Thomas. All eleven children of Thomas and Ann Foster moved to Wilkes County, North Carolina within a few years after the Revolutionary War. Two of the younger children, John and Lucy, remained in Orange County to look after their aging parents. Thomas Foster died in 1791 (testate) and Ann a few years later – apparently in 1798 as in 1799 John sold the land and plantation on Mill Run and he and Lucy also moved to Wilkes County.
The parents of Ann Garnett have been identified as Thomas Garnett and Elizabeth Muscoe. Mrs. G. P. Knight in her Genealogy of the Garnett Family indicated that there are “probably three Elizabeth Muscoe’s that married into the Garnett family around 1700. One (1) is Elizabeth (1700-1736), daughter of Salvador Muscoe, Jr. who married Capt. James Garnett. Another seems to be (2) Elizabeth Muscoe (ca 1680 – 1750) who was a sister of Salvador, Jr. who married Thomas Garnett (ca 1675 – 1748). This is the Thomas Garnett most of us trace our lineage from. The third (3) Elizabeth (ca 1702 - ?) also married a Thomas Garnett. This Elizabeth and Thomas have two children that have been identified – James and Ann W. Garnett.” Mrs. King adds two more daughters – Joyce and Ave Garnett. These last two daughters have been identified supposedly in the will of the second Thomas and Elizabeth (Muscoe) Garnett. No matter where these daughters are put – they open another large question in the Garnett line. NOTE: both daughters married Andrews – Joyce married Thomas Andrews and Ave married a brother, Dr. Mark J. Andrews.
Descendant of Anthony Garnett by Douglas J. Garnett.
“Sussan Garnett (1620 – ca 1663) identified in the Muster as being the daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth Garnett supposedly married Richard Foster (1619 - ?.) I have no information to support or disprove this marriage but in three out of the four generations it seems that Fosters married Garnetts.
Sussan’s son Robert Foster (1651 – 1815) supposedly married an Elizabeth Garnett (1660-1716 WRONG) – no parents have been identified.
Robert and Elizabeth (Garnett) Foster’s grandson Thomas Foster (1720-1791) – her parents identified as Thomas and Elizabeth (Muscoe) Foster. This Thomas (1675 – 1748) and Elizabeth Muscoe (1680 – 1750) is the second Elizabeth Muscoe mentioned above.”
John Foster, Jr. was born ca 1719 Essex Co., VA; died 1764 Albermarle Co., VA; married (1) Ann (2) ca 1742 Orange Co., VA Averilla Haskew, daughter of John and Rachel Warren Haskew. She was born ca 1725 Spotsylvania Co., VA; died after 1799
John Foster, Jr. was the third child of John and Isabel (Golding?) Foster. He was born ca 1719 in Essex County, Virginia and according to his will died in Albermarle County, Virginia sometime between February 11, 1764 and April 27, 1764. Apparently John, Jr. was married twice, first to Ann whose family name has not been identified, and second to Averilla Haskew, daughter of John and Rachel Warren Haskew.
John, Jr. and his family lived along the Orange and Louisa County line and is recorded as buying and selling several tracts of land and possibly living on both sides of the county line. He was living in Orange County on August 22, 1745 in the vicinity of his father, John Foster, Sr. and his brother-in-law, John Snell, as indicated in the Orange County road construction and repair records. On March 18, 1749, John, Jr. bought 150 acres of land in Louisa County which is in present day Albermarle County, from Benjamin Henson which bordered George Homes, on the Orange County line and on both sides of the main road, known as Durretts Ordinary. He later sold this land to Hugh Boyle.
During the early 1760s John Foster, Jr. was a prominent member of Fredericksville Parish in Louisa County. This was the part of Louisa County, along the Orange County borderline, which was later to be a part of Albermarle County. In October of 1760 he was appointed as a reader at the Upper Church in the parish and was paid for previous service. He was elected vestryman of the newly created Frederickville Parish that was divided in 1762. He continued to serve as a vestryman, clerk, and reader until his death (testate) in 1764.
Philadelphia was the second daughter of John and Isabel (Golding?) Foster. She was born ca 1722 in Essex County, Virginia. Little is know of her early life. It is more than likely that she did not go to school as she married quite young. It is estimate that her marriage to John Snell was ca 1739 in Orange County, Virginia on the plantation of her parents. John was considerably older than Philadelphia. His birth date is estimated at ca 1714 and he was born in King and Queen County, Virginia.
John and Philadelphia made their home in Orange County not far from her parents. It was there that she became the mother of eight children. After the death of her husband (June 5, 1786) she went to live with some of her children in Scott County, Kentucky
Philadelphia Foster was born ca 1722 Essex Co., VA; died after 1786 Scott Co., KY; married 1739 Orange Co., VA John Snell. He was born ca 1714 King & Queen County, Virginia; died June 5, 1785 Orange Co., VA
Anthony Foster was the youngest son that has been identified of John and Isabel (Golding?) Foster. He was born ca 1727 in Spotsylvania County, Virginia where he grew to manhood obtaining what education that was available. He apparently first married in the early 1750s in Orange County, Virginia to a Miss Tinsley (given name not know) who is believed to be the daughter of Isaac and Margaret Rucker Tinsley. This is supported by family tradition and by the fact that one of Anthonys oldest sons was named Fielding Tinsley and that Margaret Ruckers mother was Elizabeth Fielding.
After the death of this first wife Anthony married Sarah Golding (prior to 1766) who is his first cousin, daughter of William Golding and Elizabeth Foster - his aunt and uncle.) Sarah was just a young girl of around 20 years of age, having been born about 1740 in Orange County, Virginia. Anthony began his married life in Orange County (remember it was constituted in 1734 from Spotsylvania County) for it was there that his first several children were born. Except from a brief period from 1765 until 1779 they apparently lived in Orange County in the general area near the current borders of Albermarle, Greene, and Madison Counties. There, Anthony had evidently inherited land previously owned by his father, John Foster. The land was in the vicinity of Beaverdam, near John Haskew and William Lucas. Also living in the vicinity was Spencer Bobo. Anthony went on a bond for Spencer Bobo when he was sued by James Duncanson. Spencers wife, Judith, is the likely youngest child of John and Isabel (Golding?) Foster.
In 1765 Anthony and his family moved to land in Orange County (now Greene county) in the Blue Ridge Mountains that he and his brother-in-law, Isaac Tinsley, Jr. had jointly bought from Francis Dirkleys family in May of that year. In 1766 Anthony and his family apparently returned to the land which he had inherited from his father. On June 3, 1766, Henry Foster, (of Albermarle County, Virginia,) the eldest son and heir of Anthony Foster, brother to John Foster, Jr. sold to his uncle a tract 210 acres in Orange County, Virginia bordering the land of Anthony Foster and John Haskew. This deed was witnessed by John Foster (Henrys younger brother) and Spencer Bobo and his wife Judith.
By 1779 Anthony and his family had moved to Culpeper (now Madison) County to the area of Elk Run, a tributary of the Rapidan River, where he bought 162 acres of land from James Eastman and his wife, Sarah, on June 19, 1780. Earlier on September 23, 1779, Anthony Foster and his wife, Sarah of Culpeper County had sold to John Marshfield of Albermarle county, a 170 acre tract in Orange County on Beaverdam, which was formally the property of Anthony Fosters father and now occupied by Bartlett Bennett.
By 1785 Anthony and his family had moved back to Orange (now Greene) County as he is found on the tax list taken in the Fredericksville Parish area were his late brother, John Fosters grandchildren were living. Anthony Foster was taxed for himself, sixteen slaves, seven horses or mules, and nine head of cattle. Joel Foster, most certainly the son of Anthony Foster and his first wife, was enumerated just after his father on the 1787 Albermarle County, Virginia tax list. This was just prior to Joels leaving Virginia for Newberry District, South Carolina where he is found on the 1790 Federal Census.
On October 16, 1787, Anthony Foster of Albermarle County bought from Lewis Garr and his wife, Catherine, of Orange County a 200 acre tract of land in Orange County (now Green). Anthony and Sarah now of Rockingham County were living immediately across the Blue Ridge Mountains in 1792. This sale disposed of their remaining land in Virginia. Anthony and Sarah and their children sold most of their belongings, loaded up their wagons and started for their long treck to South Carolina and a new life. Anthony appeared on the Spartanburg District records beginning in 1793 apparently arriving sometime between 1792 and 1793. Anthony was over sixty years of age. What prompted a man of his age to make such a long trip to start a new life. At his age it seems unlikely that he had the youthful urge to start a new life. His older children were grown and his younger children were still in their teens. Could it be that he made the move to give his children a better opportunity for a good and productive life; productive meant land and land was cheap and plentiful in South Carolina. Orange, Culpeper, Rockingham Counties in Virginia obviously did not meet the needs of either himself or his children. Maybe he wanted for his children a new beginning where the soil was fertile and there was plenty for patenting. He most likely had corresponded with his son, Joel, and several cousins who were now living in South Carolina. Joel, the eldest of the surviving sons of Anthony Foster by his first wife, (possibly Isaac Tinsleys sister) had proceed his father to South Carolina by a few years, having located in Newberry District prior to the 1790 census. Joel apparently lived by his deceased mothers relative on Little River. Joel later moved to the Cross Keys area of Union County, South Carolina near his younger half-brothers after his fathers death. Anthony Fosters first cousin, Thomas Meador Foster had been in South Carolina for years making surveys of land patent and sales; his uncle, Thomas Foster had died there. For whatever reason, Anthony Foster and his entire family made the long trip, across North Carolina and into South Carolina. It was in Spartanburg District that Anthony bought land and settled his family.
Anthony survived his resettlement for only ten years. On April 5, 1805, he passed away; he probably was nearing eighty years of age. Sarah died seven years later on June 30, 1812. Both rest in marked graves along side of their good friend, Spencer Bobo near their home in Cross Anchor, South Carolina
Anthony Foster was born ca 1727 Spotsylvania Co., VA; died April 5, 1805 Cross Anchor, Union Co., SC; married (1) ca 1750 Orange Co., VA (Sarah?) Tinsley. Sarah was thought to be the daughter of Isaac and Sarah Tucker Tinsley. She was born ca 1730 VA; died ca 1762 VA (2) ca 1765 Orange Co., VA Sarah Golding, daughter of William and Elizabeth Foster Golding (Anthonys Aunt and Uncle). She was born ca 1740 Orange Co., VA; died June 30, 1812 Cross Anchor, Union Co., SC
It is thought that Judith Foster was the youngest child identified for John and Isabel (Golding?) Foster. She is declared a possible child based on rather weak evidence. Consider: Spencer Bobo was living near Anthony Foster in Orange County, Virginia. Anthony Foster went on the bond for Spencer when he was sued by James Duncanson. Anthony Foster bought land in Orange County and the deed was witnessed by Anthony Foster and his wife Judith. When Anthony Foster and his family moved to South Carolina Spencer and Judith Bobo also move near then. Determine for yourself if Judith is a child of John and Isabel (Golding?)
Judith Foster was born ca 1731 Spotsylvania Co., SC; died after 1830 SC; married Francis Spencer Bobo, Jr., son of Francis Spencer Bobo, Sr. and Jane Wofford. He was born 1731Culpeper Co., VA; died October 20, 1817 Laurens Co., SC
4. Barbara Foster the fourth child and first daughter of Robert and Elizabeth Garnett Foster was born ca. 1691 either in Gloucester County before the family's removal to Essex County or after their settlement there. Regardless, she was the first daughter after three sons and was without doubt welcomed with glee by parents and older brothers. If she received any formal education it must have been meager. She married Richard Loving at a time estimated to be 1710 at the home of her parents in Essex County. Richard bought a piece of land there in Essex County close to the Fosters and settled in. Some time after 1727 they sold their plantation and removed to Amelia County near to Barbara's younger brother, Thomas and his family and her mother and husband, Robert Charlesworth.
Barbara Foster was born ca 1691 in Gloucester or Essex Co., VA; died after 1763 Amelia Co., VA; married ca 1710 Essex Co., VA Richard Loving. He was born ca 1790
5. Richard Foster was the fifth son and sixth child of Robert and Elizabeth Foster. He married Sarah (Fox?) ca 1733 (place unknown.) Little is known of the life of Richard other than he met and married Sarah and they made their home in Hanover County for a number of years before removing to the neighboring County of Louisa, settling in St. Martins Parish, near his cousins, Robert and James Foster. John and James Foster were sons of John Foster who was a brother to their grandfather, Robert Foster.
Richard Foster born ca 1693 Essex Co., VA; died 1783 Louisa Co., VA; married ca 1733 Sarah (Fox?). Sarah was born ca 1715; died before 1783 Louisa Co., VA
6. William Foster was born ca 1698 in Essex County, Virginia. He is commonly referred to as The Elder. He married twice. The first wife is yet to be identified but is the mother of his first five children. His second wife was Ann Booker, daughter of Richard and Rachel Webb Booker (there are several reports that Anns mother was Rebecca Cobbes.) To William and Ann were born four children. All of the children were born in Amelia County, Virginia.
Like his brothers and sisters, William began his married life in Essex County. Later, William along with his sister, Barbara Loving and his brother, Thomas and their families, moved to Amelia County as early as 1736, when they began to be enumerated in the Amelia County tax list among the tithable inhabitants between Flat Creek and Deep Creek. In 1742 William patented 400 acres of land in Amelia County on the headwaters of Beaver Pond and branch of Flat Creek and then purchased an adjoining 353 acres of land from Irby Hudson. In 1746 he patented 13 acres in Lunenburg (Charlotte) County on the water of Spring Creek and Ash Camp Creek on Meherrin River in the same vacinity where his brother, George had settled in 1750.
William drew his will in 1763, which was probated in 1767; the year we assumed he died. In his will he listed his wife, Ann. He gave his sons William, James, and John the land on which they were living in Lunenburg County. This land was the 1340 acres that William patented in 1760. He more than likely purchased the land, in what would become Charlotte County, when his son, William came of age. As his other brothers, Thomas and James also came of age; they like William occupied a portion of the original patent. In his will, William also left to his sons, John, Richard, and Booker his plantation and land in Amelia County. When Williams will was drawn his two daughters were not married. Later, in 1764 Mary married John Mitchell. His daughter, Elizabeth, married Benjamin Hubbard in 1782, however she had borne a child, Achilles Foster, out of wedlock in 1759.
Ann Booker died in 1790 and willed a bequest to a daughter, Johannah Powell, who may have been a daughter of a first marriage.
William Foster born ca 1698 Essex Co., VA; died ca August 27, 1767 Amelia Co., VA; married (1) Unknown ca 1730 Virginia; dead before 1731 (2) Ann Booker ca 1748 Virginia. Ann was born ca 1726 in Virginia; died 1790 Amelia Co., VA
7. Anthony Foster was the youngest son of Robert and Elizabeth Garnett Foster. He was born ca 1698 or before as he was witnessing a deed on December 1, 1719 when his brother, John Foster bought 100 acres of land in St. Annes Parish, Essex County from Wm. Stapp and Joshus Stapp for L 20 sterling. (Legal age was 21 years for witnessing.) Anthony was the youngest of seven brothers and two sisters and spent his entire youth on the farmlands of Essex County. He married Martha ca 1720 in Essex County. Martha is thought by many Foster researchers to be a Taliaferro. However, those Taliaferro family researchers with whom I have corresponded failed to find a Martha Taliaferro who married an Anthony Foster. However, they admit that there are Marthas of about the same age and location for which they have no husband. I will continue to use (Taliaferro?) until some documentation has been found.
> Anthony and Martha started their married life in Essex County and this is where the first two of their children were born. They moved from St. Annes Parish, Essex County after 1725 for on May 3rd of that year they recorded a purchase from Robert King of 100 acres of land in St. George Parish, Spotsylvania County on the south side of the Po River. It bordered land that his brother, John Foster had purchased from Robert King on December 12, 1721.
During the next several years Anthony accumulated considerable land having purchased 1657 acres of land in one transaction (he turned around and sold it back to the man from who he had originally purchased it) and 105 acres in another transaction in 1740, 331 acres in 1744, 135 acres in 1746 and on March 16, 1754 he purchased 550 acres all in St. George Parish. There is no indication that he lived on any of this acreage but remained on the original 100 acres he purchased in 1721.
Martha Foster died after 1740 and before 1761 as 1740 was the date of the birth of their last child and 1761 was the date of a deed transaction which list a Sarah as Anthonys wife. In deed transactions in 1755 and 1759 there was no mention of a wife. So, it appears that Anthony remarried sometime between 1759 and 1761 and Martha died between 1740 and 1755. The Sarah was a Mrs. Sarah Sparks, widow of Zachary Sparks. Martha was the mother of all seven of Anthonys children.
Anthony Foster born ca 1698 Essex Co., VA; died February 4, 1763 Spotsylvania Co., VA; married (1) Martha (Taliaferro?) ca 1720 Essex Co., VA (2) Mrs. Sarah Sparks ca 1760 Spotsylvania Co., VA.
8. George Foster was born ca 1695 in Essex County where he grew to manhood obtaining what little education that was available. He was literate. He met and married Mary Singleton, daughter of Robert and Sarah Elizabeth Crow Singleton on November 29, 1722 in Lunenburg County. Mary inherited land in Essex County from her father and there George and Mary made their first home. They were living in Caroline County in 1734 in that part of Essex County that was cut off when Caroline County was established in 1727-28. George can be found associated with a variety of political activities in Caroline County until 1750. We know that George Foster bought land in Lunenburg County for on June 1, 1750 he received a grant of nine hundred and eighty-five acres "on both sides of Spring Creek Fork of Little Roanoke" adjoining land of Joseph Morton, Clement Reed, and a Mr. Womack. George and his family can also be found in Stafford/Prince William/Fairfax County before finally settling down in Charlotte County. On August 10, 1756 he received a grant of an additional four hundred acres in Lunenburg County, later Charlotte County on Cock's and Laton's Creek. It was there on February 17, 1789 that George made his will and it was in that year that he died as his will was probated on June 1, 1789. Mary Singleton Foster died prior to George's death estimated to be about 1780 in Charlotte County.
George Foster was born ca 1695 in Essex Co., VA; died 1789 Charlotte Co., VA; married November 29, 1722 Lunenburg Co., VA Mary Singleton. Mary was born ca 1796 Gloucester Co., VA the daughter of Robert Singleton and Sarah (Elizabeth) Crow
9. Thomas was the seventh child of Robert and Elizabeth Garnett Foster. He was born ca 1696 in Essex County not too long after the family made their move from Gloucester County. There he grew to manhood. He married Elizabeth. She was probably a Meador as there were families of Meadors in Essex County that he would have known and this, coupled with the fact the had a son Alexius Meador, makes the assumption tempting. The marriage date is unknown.
Thomas and Elizabeth, we assume started their life together in Essex County, that part which would become Caroline County, as it was there that their first four children were born. They moved from Caroline County to Amelia County in 1737 for in that year (June 10, 1737) Thomas Foster received a royal land grant of 350 acres of land on Stock Creek in what is now the northwest corner of Amelia County south of the Appomattox River.
After their move from Amelia County, they built their plantation house, their outbuildings, cleared their land and planted their orchards. They must have considered this their permanent home; all was well except the absence of family around them. It seems likely that Thomas and Elizabeth were anxious to share this new country with their families. One can only assume that Thomas wrote to his sister, Barbara Loving and urge her and her young family to leave Essex County and join them; this they did. In 1739 Thomas Foster sold to Richard and Barbara Loving 150 acres of the 350 he patented in 1737. The land was part of a tract on the upper side of Stock Creek. Again, we must assume that Thomas wrote his mother, who as we know had remarried after his father died. She and her husband Robert Charlesworth also moved from Essex to Amelia County where they built their home adjacent to Thomas Foster. In 1741 "for reason of the dutiful regard he hath for his mother, the said Elizabeth Charlesworth ." He deeded "one part of land (50 acres) .." "it being the land on which the said Robert Charlesworth now liveth." The fifty acres was part of the 350 acres patented by Thomas Foster. Here is additional proof that Robert Foster, Sr. was only married once - to Elizabeth Garnett. Thomas calls Elizabeth Garnett Foster Charlesworth, his mother.
Robert Charlesworth died in Amelia County prior to June 22, 1745 when the administration of his estate was awarded to Edward Booker. Elizabeth Foster Charlesworth probably predeceased her husband sometime between 1742 and 1745 and was buried there in Amelia County.
After the death of his mother and stepfather Thomas Foster started preparations for a move to Spotsylvania County. From deed records we know that Thomas and his underage children were in Spotsylvania County as early as 1745 for in that year he bought land there. From the time he moved to Spotsylvania he became known as Thomas Foster, surgeon. Sometime prior to his move to Spotsylvania County it is likely he received training as a physician; where we do not know. We do know that it did not require extensive education to become a physician and his training was probably through apprenticeship. It is possible that all of his life he wanted to become a physician. As his children were becoming of age Thomas might have deeded them most of his land and took up his life's ambition.
Regardless, Thomas Foster practiced medicine in Spotsylvania County for a decade before returning to the Appomattox River area, this time to Cumberland County just north of Amelia County where he continued his practice of medicine.
He later moved to the coastal area of South Carolina where he practiced medicine until his died in 1769. He died in St. James Sanstee Parish, Cravin County, South Carolina. His son, Alexis Meador Foster was executor of his estate.
Prior to his removal to South Carolina, Thomas Foster's son Alexis Meador received training as a surveyor and subsequently moved to South Carolina. Alexius Meador Foster patented much of the land in the proximity of Spartanburg and Union Districts where he was heavily involved in surveying land grants.
Dr. Foster's first wife, Elizabeth probably died prior to his removal to South Carolina and is apparently the Thomas Foster who married on August 25, 1761 to Caroline Rogers of Prince Edward County, Virginia, where we presume he was practicing medicine. Thomas Foster born ca 1696 Essex Co., VA; died ca 1689 Craven Co., SC; married (1) Elizabeth (Meador?) ca 1718 Essex Co., VA (2) Caroline Rogers August 26, 1861.
10. Margaret Foster was the eighth child and second daughter of Robert and Elizabeth Garnett Foster. She was born between 1697 and 1702 in Essex County, Virginia. Little is known of the life of this daughter. It has been reported that she died young, about 1716 while there are other reports that she may have married a Samuel Hamm of Spotsylvania County. More research is needed on Margarets life.
11. Elizabeth Foster was the third daughter and eleventh child of Robert and Elizabeth Garnett Foster. She was born in Essex County and was but a young girl when her father died. It was by her mother and stepfather that she was raised to young womanhood. It is estimated that she married William Golding in 1728. William Golding was the son of John Golding and Mrs. Cassandra Wood and resided in Caroline County. In was in that part of Essex County that became Caroline County that William and Elizabeth spent their early years. By 1741 William Golding and his family had moved up the Mattaponi River to the northwest, toward the frontier land which had been opened in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Orange County. Their land was near that of John Foster, Elizabeths older brother. They apparently lived in Orange County from around 1741 to ca 1746 near the Orange County courthouse and from ca 1746 to 1771 near the Blue Ridge Mountains in what is now Greene County prior to their departure to the Ninety Six District in the frontier land of the upland of South Carolina, later that year.
On April 25, 1771 William and Elizabeth Foster Golding sold their 150 acres of land in Orange County (now Greene County) to Francis Kirtley, loaded up their belongings and started their long journey south. On September 3, 1771 William applied in Charleston, South Carolina for a 250- acre land grant in Berkeley, now Newberry, on the branch of Little River called Sandy Run. On September 29, 1771 William applied for an additional land grant of 300 acres, which is described as being in Craven (now Newberry) County on the water of Long Lick Creek.
William Golding signed his last will and testament on September 4, 1777. Since there is no mention of Elizabeth, one assumes that she died in South Carolina sometime between the sale of their home in Virginia in 1771 and the writing of her husbands will in September 1777.
Elizabeth Foster born ca 1703 Essex Co., VA; died before 1777
Ninety Six District, SC; married William Golding about 1728 Caroline (Essex) Co., SC. William was born ca 1704 Essex Co., VA, son of John and Mrs. Cassandra Woods Golding; died after September 23, 1777 Ninety Six District, SC
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