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Diana, Goddess of the Hunt for Ancestors!
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Joseph DAVIS
Husband:  Joseph DAVIS could he be this Joseph DAVIS?
Birth:  ca. 1730
Marriage:  10 Jul 1754, SC
Wife:  Mary WHITE
Birth:  ca. 1735
Children appear to be:
1.  Joseph DAVIS, Jr.
2.  Nathan DAVIS

The following is possibly Joseph's son, but has not been proven (or disproven, for that matter).  The evidence is entirely circumstantial and not convincing it's my own  family's legend that is probably untrue:
3.  Isaac DAVIS, b. 1760-65 
What is true, and what no doubt led to the birth of our family legend, is that this Isaac DAVIS and his family lived from ca. 1797 to 1818 in the watershed of the West Fork of the Red River, near Fairview, Christian [now Todd] Co., KY, birthplace of Jefferson DAVIS in 1807/8.  The legend is reinforced by the fact that Isaac and his wife's kin had come to the West Fork region from Broad River, in South Carolina, the last certainly known location of Joseph DAVIS.

Keywords for search engines:  genealogy; USA, US, United States, South Carolina


See page for Joseph DAVIS of Philadelphia and Broad River for the beginning of this commentary.

Joseph DAVIS, son of Evan DAVIS, Sr., signed an indenture in 1762 in Philadelphia as being "of Broad River, South Carolina."  There is a Joseph DAVIS in the Broad River region of NC/SC, namely, our subject, who deserves some investigation as to whether he is Evan's son.

Below is a timeline (extracted from a larger timeline constructed for a different purpose) of events surrounding a Joseph DAVIS in the Broad River regions of NC/SC .  I have included in the timeline individuals in that region known to have moved to Christian/Todd Co., KY, in the late 1790s.  The CLARKs, KUYKENDALLs, WYATTs, FRENCHes, WHITESIDEs, and DAVISes settled in the "West Fork Region" of the Red River watershed in what is now mostly Todd, partly Christian, County, that is, in the region of Fairview, birthplace of Jefferson DAVIS, President CSA. 

My family like many a southern family with DAVIS ancestors has a tradition of being cousins to Jefferson DAVIS.  Most of these traditions are untrue, many without the remotest foundation (e.g., see these bogus ancestries of Jefferson DAVIS).  And I should precede my comments with the disclaimer that I am, by nature, a skeptic, and I won't believe any family legend until it is proven true I've just seen too many proven untrue when exposed to scrutiny.

Our DAVISes were living in the West Fork Region of Christian [now Todd] Co., KY, near Fairview, from the late 1790s until 1818 the same time period when Samuel DAVIS, father of Jefferson, lived in the region so I don't think my family can be faulted for having accepted such a tradition for generations.  I do not want to believe it if it isn't true, however, so my starting position is that it is not.  The evidence must convince me otherwise and, as it stands, there appears to be only one possible avenue open to us as a connection and that is through Joseph DAVIS of Broad River, South Carolina. 

And, of course, Y-DNA testing could support/debunk these paper connections, once and for all, if only we could find a proven descendant of Evan DAVIS to be tested. 

(Please see Jefferson Davis Home Page for a general discussion of the possibilies for connection to the late CSA President.) 

Year Location Event Source
1722-29 PA: Philadelphia birth of Joseph DAVIS Barb (1971)
    birth of Mary WHITE  
c1750 Philadelphia to South Carolina Joseph moves, with brother, Evan DAVIS, Jr. Barb (1971:501)
10 Jul 1754 SC marriage of Joseph DAVIS & Mary WHITE Sarrett (nd)
5 Oct 1762 PA: Philadelphia Joseph DAVIS "of Broad River, SC" signs indenture Barb (1971:502)
1766/7 NC [now SC]: Mecklenburg [now Cherokee] Co.: SW side of Broad R. Henry, Ichabod, and Reyderus CLARK are granted land; Nathaniel CLARK is resident  
1768 Tryon Co. is formed from western Mecklenburg Co.
In, NC, Tryon Co. includes all of today's Cleveland, Gaston, and Lincoln Cos.; most of Rutherford and Polk Cos.; and parts of Burke and McDowell Cos.  In SC, Tryon Co. includes all of today's Cherokee, Spartanburg, York, Chester, and Union Cos.; most of Laurens Co.; and parts of Greenville, Newberry, and Lancaster Cos.
28 Apr 1768 NC: Tryon Co.: S Fk Catawba R.
[could today be in Mecklenburg, Gaston, or Lincoln Co.]
Joseph DAVIS is granted 400 acres.  Land is sold some time before 1779.  
29 Aug 1768 Both sides of Rudisal's Ck. William WYATT receives grant  
6 May 1769 NC: Tryon [now Gaston] Co.:
both sides of Dutchman's [a.k.a., Rudisal's] Ck.: Davis's Mill Place
Joseph DAVIS (Sr.) is granted land.  
1769-1771   Joseph DAVIS, Sr., dies.  
9 Feb 1771 NC: Tryon Co.:  W side of Dutchman's Creek,
Joseph DAVIS, Jr., sells land to Nathan DAVIS of Tryon Co.  
3 Oct 1772 NC: Tryon Co.: Davis Mill Place Joseph DAVIS, Jr., of Tryon Co. sells part of land originally granted to Joseph DAVIS, Sr., now deceased.  Among witnesses:  Nathan DAVIS.  
6 Mar 1773 NC: Tryon Co.: Leeper's Ck. (an alternate name or tributary of Dutchman's Ck.) Samuel KUYKENDALL of Tryon Col. sells land.  Witnesses: Jonathan KUYKENDALL and Nathan DAVIS.  
1 Sep 1773 NC [now SC]: Tryon [now Union/Cherokee] Co.: Broad R. Henry & Sarah (JONES) CLARK sell land.  
3 Dec 1773 Both sides of Dutchman's Ck., part of tract granted to Joseph DAVIES (decd) William ALSTON sell land to Thomas HUNT.  Among witnesses: Simon KUYKENDALL.  
14 Oct 1778 W side of Dutchman's Ck., by Sarah KUYKENDALL, once owned by Joseph DAVIS Nathan DAVIS sells land.  
5 Jul 1782 NC: Mecklenburg Co.: Sugar Ck. Joseph DAVIS buys land  
'Under Construction' sign.      


1.  Paul R. Sarrett, Jr., compiler. [nd] Some "Early" South Carolina Marriage Records: 1641-1799 (online in the SCGenWeb Archives; file: sc-g1800.txt).

2.  Kirk Bentley Barb.  1971.  "Extract from Genealogy of Jefferson Davis."  Appendix III, pp. 488-508 in Papers of Jefferson Davis, Volume 1, 1808-1840.  Haskell M. Monroe, Jr., and James T. McIntosh, eds.  Louisiana State Univ. Press, Baton Rouge.  [Rev. ed. of 1991 not seen.] 

3.  Will of Evan Davis, Sr., 1743, in which he names his wife and children. 

4.  Indenture, 1762, in which William Davis buys out his siblings' interest in real estate bequeathed to them by their parents.  This document tells us that, at the time, Joseph Davis, carpenter, was "of Broad River in the Colony of South Carolina" and that he came to Philadelphia to be present at the settlement. 

5.  Haskell M. Monroe., Jr. & James T. McIntosh, eds.  1971.  "Genealogy of the Davis Family."  Appendix IV, pp. 505-529 in Papers of Jefferson Davis, Volume 1, 1808-1840.  Louisiana State Univ. Press, Baton Rouge.  [Rev. ed. of 1991 not seen.]

6.  Ernesto Caldeira.  1983.  "Davis Family Genealogy."  Appendix II, pp. 402-416 in Papers of Jefferson Davis, Volume 4, 1849-1852.  Linda Lasswell Christ, Mary Seaton Dix, and Richard E. Beringer, eds.  Louisiana State Univ. Press, Baton Rouge.

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