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Page 135 of 432

Descendants of Richard Hansard

Generation No. 2


Notes for W
1. William HANFORD/HANSFORD/HANSARD, however the name, the progenitor of the families reported herein as HANSARD/HANSERD/HANSIRD/HANSFORD, in all probability was their immigrant ancestor. His father's name was Richard, a name used repeatedly by his descendants, but the name of his mother is yet unknown.

Due to the loss of so many of the early records in the areas where the family first settled in Virginia, nothing is actually known regarding William's early life. Since he would probably have married at age 25 to 30, by projecting the birth years of his four known sons, listed here-after, one could reasonably assume that he must have been born between 1710 and 1715, married by ca. 1735, and deceased by 1750.

It is very possible that whatever illness the Robinsons were suffering from (referred to in Chapter I) may have been contracted by William and eventually caused his death. It is only this writer's opinion, but the Robinsons may have had what was earlier referred to as the "white plague", discussed briefly in the World Book Encyclopedia, later known as consumption or tuberculosis, which modern medical techniques have considerably diminished in the developed countries. This writer has had a very good reason to know more about this affliction than many, because it was in her maternal line and in her own family when she was young.

It seems very likely that all of William's children were yet minors when he died, as indicated by local Church and Court records. The first reference to the name of William's wife as Bathsheba Archer appears on a family lineal chart prepared by Mr. Richard Beverly Raney, before his death in 1909 (referred to here as the RANEY-HANSARD-SPEED Chart) on which he shows the parentage of his ancestor Richard, as "William Hansard of Ireland and Bathsheba Archer."

There seems no reason to doubt that Richard's father William may have been of Ireland, but not necessarily born there. As indicated in the preceding Chapter hereof, William's father Richard was apparently not in England, when the settlement of his mother's estate was effected ca. 1741/42, so the family may very well have been in Ireland or in the American Colonies at that time. Because of the rules of primogeniture then in effect in the British Isles, many of the younger sons of younger sons were left without a patrimony [inheritance]. Thus, many of them were forced to seek "greener pastures" elsewhere, in Scotland, Ireland, or eventually in the American Colonies. Due to the inconsistencies in spelling of names, one cannot-arbitrarily assume that the patrilineal name of the family was HANSARD, or HANSFORD. For instance, Mr. Raney's reference to Ireland is not substantiated by any documentation, nor is the name of Bathsheba Archer as the wife of William. An intensive search of Colonial Virginia records found numerous Archer families in the areas where the Hansard/Hansford families were residenced, but none could be found with a daughter named Bathsheba. However, admittedly, many of the earlier Archers died intestate, and the wills of some who died testate are no longer extant, nor are many of the earlier marriage records yet extant. Thus the time and place of birth and marriage of William and Bathsheba can only be speculative as of now.

It should be further pointed out that practically all of the records regarding Mr. Raney's ancestor Richard in Mecklenburg County, Va., show the family name as HANSERD, and that name seems to have been used by Richard and his immediate family throughout their lifetimes. Very seldom was the name written into the records before 1900 as HANSARD, so it would seem that Mr. Raney's research on his lineage must have prompted him to use the name of HANSARD and not HANSFORD on his chart. The names of Richard's brothers were written into the records in a variety of ways, but mostly as HANSFORD or HANSARD. It should also be noted that Mr.Raney must have found some record which has not been discovered during the extensive research done on the family in more recent years, because it seems doubtful that he could have determined from the records which have been found by researchers in more resent times that William's wife was named Bathsheba, as is evidenced by records presented later in this Chapter.

As delineated in the preceding Chapter, the earliest specific mention of the family shows William HANFORD in Hanover County church records in 1738. The next record found regarding the family appears in the Episcopal Church records at Richmond Town, Henrico County. It was hoped that a photocopy of the original entry in these records could be obtained but that could not be done. Dr. R. A. Brock was permitted to copy the records, which he published as -- The VESTRY BOOK of HENRICO PARISH VIRGINIA, 1730-1773, From the Original Manuscript, with NOTES AND APPENDIX. The following entries are found therein: (Only a few items copied here)*

page 89--
At a Veftry held at Richmond Town., the 8 day of February, 1750
Henrico Parifh Dr (Debtor) for the year 1750 .....

To the Church Wardenf, for Francif Archer 300
To ... DO (ditto) .... for the Widow Hanfford* 500

page 90-
At a Veftry held at Richmond Town, the 29 day of September, 1750
Henrico Parifh Dr (Debtor) for the year 1751 .....

To Mary Allen, for her fon, an Idiott 12000
(her husband Edmond Allen had died since the last Vestry Meeting)
To Francif Archer 300
To the Widow Hanfford* 500
To John Oakling, for keeping Jamef Brown 6 weekf ?
and burying him
To John Burton, for Sundry Goods bought for Mary ?
Brown and Carrying her to Blifland Parifh

*Note that in the early handwritten records the long "s" which was almost indistinguishable from the "f" was used, and in printed matter the lower case "f" was used for both the "s" and the "f". When the "s" and "f" came together, as in Hansford, the name or word might be interpreted as "ss", "ff" or "sf". Dr. Brock apparently did distinguish the difference between the "s" and the "f" in the original manuscript and indexed the name as Hansford.

Also, remember that in Chapter I. hereof, the Hanford and Archer families are mentioned at the same Vestry meeting of St. Pauls Parish in Hanover County in considering the welfare of the Robinson/Robertson family. Now, a few years later, the Vestry of Henrico Parish in Henrico Co., is considering the welfare of the Hansford and the Archer families at the same meeting. Thus, one might speculate that perhaps the Sarah Archer, mentioned in 1738, might have been the mother of Bathsheba Hanford/Hansford; that she had died in the interim; that Francis Archer may have been a sibling of Bathsheba, who may have been living in the Hanford/Hansford household when William died, and so the Church Wardens were looking after the welfare of Francis Archer also. Records show that Francis Archer remained on the dole of St. John's Vestry through 1757. Whether Francis Archer was a male or female is not known, nor could other records be found regarding a Francis Archer, who, if a female, may have married and might be found under some other name.

It should also be mentioned here that the names of Burton and Brown are later associated with that of Hansard/Hansford. 1-1. William Hanford/Hansford/Hansard later married into the Brown family of Henrico Parish, and Dale Parish, Chesterfield County, as evidenced later in this work, so that the James Brown mentioned in the Vestry records in Henrico Parish may very well have been a relative, if not a brother, of Alexander Brown.

The four known sons of William and Bathsheba are listed here as follows:

1. William Hansford/Hansard b. ca. 1735-1740 m. Janet Brown
2. John Hansford/Hansard b. ca. 1735-1740 m. Ann
3. Archelus/Archer Hansford/ b. ca. 1741-1742 M. Hansard
4. Richard Hansford/Hansard b. ca. 1742-1743 m/l, Sarah Speed
m/2, Sarah Farguson

It is likely that there were daughters, but none have been identified. It is also likely that there may have been another son, probably older, named James, since that name was passed down so frequently in the line of 1-1 William. It is noted that on page 135, Sunlight on the Southside, List of Tithes, Lunenburg County, Virginia, 1748-1783, by Landon C. Bell, the name of James Handeford appears on the List taken by Nicholas Haile for 1750, with 1 tithe. Thus, he was at least 16 years of age, the age at which he would have become taxable, and he was listed alone. As pointed out by Mr. Bell on page 50, these lists "present an important and informing study in the variant forms of spelling of names....Ordinary names, at the hands of different officials, were spelled a variety of ways; and not only so, but were spelled in different ways by the same official, on the same lists, as if serving notice on posterity that he was in doubt, and was leaving the matter open for the determination of others." A very apt statement for members of the families presented in this line.

At the March 4, 1757, Chesterfield County Court, p. 271, the following item is noted:

Church Wardens of Dale Parish to bind to a trade Archer Handsard, orphan of
William Handsard, and Bartholomew Baugh, orphan of William Baugh.
(Court Order Book #2, 1754-1759)

Children of W
3. i.   WILLIAM3 HANSARD, b. 1739, Hanover Co., Virginia; d. April 01, 1798, Albert Co., Georgia.

Page 135 of 432

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