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Copyright 2018, The Genealogical Society of Old Tryon County, N. C., Inc.

Welcome to The Genealogical Society of Old Tryon County, N. C., Inc.

Our regular publication is the Bulletin, published quarterly from 1973 through 2012 and three times a year since 2013.

For information on some other publications of the Society which are available, click here: Books for Sale.

For a searchable listing of the contents of Volume I (1973) through Volume XLVI (2018) of the Bulletin, click here.

To search personal name indexes for individual Volumes XL (2012) through XLVI (2018) of the Bulletin, click on the year below.

    2012   2013   2014   2015   2016   2017   2018

To search combined personal name indexes for Volumes XX (1992) through XLV (2017) of the Bulletin, click on the first letter of the surname as indicated below.

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    A   B   C   D   E   F   G   H   I   J   K   L   M   N   O   P   Q   R   S   T   U   V   W   Y   Z   ??

    Index to Slaves and Free Persons, generally without surnames (check ?? above also)

    Index to Queries

A List of Some Published Resources of the Area that Comprised Tryon County in 1769

For a list of some published resources of the area before, during, and after Tryon County's existence, click here.   The library has most, but not all, of these publications.   Many other items may be found in issues of the Bulletin.   For listings of those click here.

The Society's Rutherford County Marriage Collection

Marriage bonds were created prior to 1868. Beginning in 1868 marriage licenses were created instead. Since 1851 marriages were also recorded in marriage registers. For an example of a bond, click here.  For an example of a license, click here.  For an example of a register, click here.  Note that the register does not provide all of the information that is recorded on the license. The amount of data recorded on licenses also varies across time. The Society has paper copies of most Rutherford County marriage licenses from about 1868 to 1961. Copies of licenses in our collection may be obtained from the Society. Call or write for details. To find out if a license for which you are searching existed, you can check our index of all Rutherford marriage bonds and licenses from 1779 to 1961. Click here. It should be noted that a few marriage licenses are missing. However, they are still listed in the index since the marriages are recorded in the marriage registers. We also have microfilm of Rutherford County marriage bonds from 1779 to 1868.

The Society's Rutherford County Death Certificate Collection

Death certificates began to be recorded in small towns in Rutherford County in 1909, but death certificates for the entire county were not recorded until about 1914. The Society has paper copies of the county copies of Rutherford County death certificates through 1954. The information on the county copies will in most cases match that on the state copies. However, there are differences occasionally. Also, if the state copy is difficult to read, the county copy may not be (and vice-versa). Copies of the county copies in our collection may be obtained from the Society. Call or write for details. To find out if a death certificate for which you are searching exists, you can check our index of all Rutherford County copies of death certificates from 1909 to 1954. Click here.

The Western Boundary of Tryon County

Following the 1763 end of the French and Indian War efforts were made to firmly establish the boundary between Indian lands and the western parts of North Carolina and South Carolina.   Land between the Catawba and Broad Rivers was ceded to North Carolina by the Catawba Indians in 1763 by the Treaty of Augusta (Georgia).   Based upon an agreement of 20 October 1765 the Treaty of Fort Prince George in 1766 established the boundary between Indian lands and South Carolina (as far north as Reedy River since at the time lands northeast of there were claimed by North Carolina).   North Carolina began serious efforts to establish its western boundary with the Cherokee Indians in 1767 and the boundary was ratified 14 October 1768 by the Treaty of Hard Labor.   The essential documents of Governor Tryon may be viewed at the following links to his papers at the N. C. Archives (links will open in new tabs or windows).   The western boundary agreement may be viewed on five frames here.   The 16 July 1767 proclamation by King George III to Governor Tryon which includes prohibition of settlements on the Indian lands may be viewed on two frames here.   Governor Tryon's proclamation to the colony with the same date may be viewed on two frames here.   The 14 October 1768 Treaty of Hard Labor may be viewed on five frames here.   Not by coincidence, a new county was created out of the western part of Mecklenburg County shortly after the Treaty of Hard Labor and was named for Governor William Tryon.   For all practical purposes the western boundary of Tryon County was extended farther west as part of the Treaty of Long Island (Holston River) 20 July 1777 by which the Cherokee Indians ceded lands east of the Blue Ridge Mountains to North Carolina.   This is reflected in the description of Rutherford County made in the bill to divide Tryon County (see below).

The Northern Boundary of Tryon County

By the Carolina Charter of 24 March 1663 Charles II awarded to eight of his supporters land from Virginia to Florida.   Seven of the eight Lords Proprietors sold their interests back to the Crown 25 July 1729.   One proprietor John, Lord Carteret, later Earl of Granville, refused to surrender his interest.   By the recommendation of a special commission, on 6 December 1743 it was decided that Lord Carteret's lands would be those south of the Virginia boundary extending south to 35 degrees 34 minutes north latitude.   This huge tract of land became known as the Granville District.   When Rowan County was created out of Anson County in 1753 its southern boundary coincided with the southern boundary of the Granville District.   Land south of that Rowan County boundary west of the Catawba River became part of Mecklenburg County when it was created out of Anson County 1 February 1763.   This resulted in 1769 in the northern boundary of newly created Tryon County being part of the southern line of the Granville District as well.   Consequently a small portion of present Lincoln, Cleveland, and Rutherford Counties was in Rowan County in the Granville District and not part of Tryon County.

The Eastern Boundary of Tryon County

The act creating Tryon County designated its eastern boundary to be the Catawba River extending south to the boundary with South Carolina.   In 1764 that South Carolina boundary east of the Catawba River had been determined to be the line including the present southern boundaries of the counties of Anson and Union (NC).   Therefore the eastern boundary of Tryon County extended only as far south as an area near the southeast corner of present York County, South Carolina.   Assertions that the 1764 line should have been much farther north resulted in the 1772 agreement giving South Carolina the part of Tryon County south of the present NC-SC boundary and known at the time as the New Acquisition.

The Southern Boundary of Tryon County

With no specification being made of its southern boundary, by default it became what was then an as-yet-undetermined South Carolina boundary west of the Catawba River.   That boundary would have extended in some manner from the southern end of the western boundary on the Reedy River to the southern end of the eastern boundary on the Catawba River.   It would be problematic for settlers in the southern section of Tryon County to know whether they resided in North Carolina or South Carolina.   If they considered themselves residents of South Carolina they would have been residents of Craven County in that state and part of either Camden District or 96 District (even though they may not have been).

The Tryon County Charter

At the N. C. Archives in Secretary of State series S. S. XVIII (Recordkeeping, Miscellaneous), formerly in S. S. 906 (Miscellaneous Papers), is the "Charter for Tryon County" dated 26 June 1769, giving inhabitants of the county "full Power and absolute Authority as heretofore accustomed and directed within our said Province to Name and Elect and send two Representatives for the said County to be present, set and Vote in the House of Assembly of our said Province of North Carolina ..."   For an image of the charter click here.  See the August 2012 Bulletin, p. 135.

Items Relating to Tryon County in the N. C. General Assembly Session Records

Each of the links below will open in a new tab or window.

The bill for the formation of Tryon County out of Mecklenburg County at the Nov.-Dec. 1768 session can be viewed on frames 1 through 9 of a folder of bills from Nov. 14 to Nov. 24 by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.  See the May 2012 Bulletin, pp. 98-99.

The 17 December 1770 bill appointing William Moore of Tryon County as a collector of taxes can be viewed on nine frames by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.  See the August 2012 Bulletin, pp. 135-136.

The 29 December 1770 bill which appointed commissioners for erecting a courthouse, prison, and stocks for Tryon County can be viewed on two frames by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.  See the August 2012 Bulletin, p. 137.

Until the formation of Burke County the northern boundary of Tryon County was the southern boundary of old Rowan County, but the boundary's precise location had not been determined. The 14 January 1771 bill to determine the boundary and to appoint commissioners to survey the line can be viewed on three frames by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.  See the August 2012 Bulletin, pp. 137-138.

After the 1772 survey of the boundary line between North and South Carolina west of the Catawba River a bill dated 14 December 1773 appointed commissioners again for building a courthouse, prison and stocks for Tryon County which had been greatly reduced in size by loss of the part south of the present NC-SC boundary. The bill can be viewed on two frames by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.  See the August 2012 Bulletin, p. 138.

A bill of 1 February 1773 exonerated sheriffs John Tagert and Francis Adams of Tryon County from being chargeable for taxes for the part of Tryon County lost to South Carolina by the 1772 line survey. The bill can be viewed on four frames by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.

Once again, on 9 March 1774, a bill appointed commissioners to build a courthouse, prison and stocks for Tryon County as well to establish the Catawba River as the boundary between Tryon and Mecklenburg Counties. The bill can be viewed on four frames by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.  See the August 2012 Bulletin, pp. 138-139.

See Senate Joint Resolutions, Nov. 19 - Dec. 24, 1777, regarding James Miller being allowed to keep an Indian boy taken prisoner from the Cherokee Nation.   This item can be viewed on frame ten by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.

A bill of 5 December 1777 empowered the court of Tryon County to lay a tax by assessment. The bill can be viewed on thirteen frames by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.

See Senate Joint Resolutions, April 15 - May 2, 1778 regarding Robert Porter whose home was destroyed by fire along with public bills of credit which were to have been paid to persons for services against the Cherokee Indians. This can be viewed on frames 13-19 by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.

See Joint Select Committee Reports, August 1778, regarding the services of John Morris, Randolph Coxey, and John Potts when William Gilbert was commissary at Fort McFadden.   Included are statements as to Gilbert's mishandling of funds to the public's injury.   This can be viewed on frames 1-4 and frames 21-30 by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.

See Joint Select Committee Reports, May 1779, for the petition of George Lamkin, sheriff of Tryon County, and his efforts to collect taxes amid described troubles in the county in 1772. This can be viewed on frames 17-20 by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.   See the Bulletin November 1992, p. 192.

A 26 January 1779 bill provided for the division of Tryon County into two separate counties Lincoln and Rutherford and in the process removed the name of William Tryon, colonial governor, from the name of any North Carolina county. The bill can be viewed on ten frames by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.

See House Joint Resolutions, Feb. 6 - Feb. 13, 1779 regarding William Gilbert being allowed to resign as a Justice of the Peace. This item can be viewed on frames 18-21 by linking to the N. C. Archives.   Click here.

Petition of Burke County Residents Asking to Be Added to Tryon County, 25 December 1778

After the 1777 formation of Burke County on the north side of Tryon County some residents of Burke County in the area of what is now Catawba County petitioned the General Assembly asking for the following part of Burke County to be added to Tryon County: “Beginning at the South Line, and Extending up first Little Broad River, to the Mountain, thence the ridge of Mountains to Henry Whiteners, thence to the horse ford, on the main Cataba, and thence Down the Same, to the South Line.” The "South Line" was the boundary between Burke and Tryon Counties. Their goal was not achieved. Signers of the petition are as follows: Jacob Mitchal, Martin Kline, Frederick Mouser, Thomas Winklar, Conroad Winkler, Jhon Killion, Jacob Killion, Jacob Yunt, Andrew Killion, Samuel Killion, Ulry Crowder, Thomas Fisher, George Wagoner, Jhon Shell, Joseph Jhonston, Georg Whitly, Daniel Hudson, James Robinson Sinner, James Wilson, Jacob Witsle, Jacob Summey, Philip Whitener, Jacob Yorty, Martin Shufortt, Micheall Whitener, Jacob Shuffort, Danl. Whitener, Benjamin Whitener, Conroad Yotter, Cristian Ny, Christopher Rider, Pall Peeterson, Andrew Balldawser, Conroad Wagonar, Jacob Millar, Robt. Blackburn, Henry Hollman, Jas. Witherow, Jorg Schmidt, Anthony Hollman, Alexd. Lockheart, Jams. Lockheart, John Boyd, Christian Gross, John Gross, Henry Gross, David Ramsour, Daniel Kingry, Nicgles Cleh(?), Jhon Haun, Jhon Moll, Joshua Haun, Jacob Gortner, Peter Froy, Nicholas Froy, Jhon Houk, Jhon Shuffort, Thomas Low, Henry Heldabrand, Frederick Wise Ser., Frederick Wise Jr., Daniel Wise, Thomas Hoover, Orband Ashabraner, Phillip Ashabraner, Felda Ashabraner, Jhon Dianment, Samuel Jarrit, Martin Speegel, Freder (torn), Peter Sumy, Thomas Pillgrim, Nickholas Froy, Jhon Froy, Henry Ashabraner, Jeremiah Demas, Jhon Shuffart, Daniel Shuffart, David Shuffart, Jhon Miller, Jacob Gotner, Frattrick(?) Gotner, Philip Merten, Georg Merten, John Merten, James Withrow, James Willson. The petition may be viewed on frames 40 and 41 of Joint Papers of the General Assembly Session Records, Jan.-Feb. 1779.  Click here.   (The link will open in a new tab or window.)

Petitions of Burke County Residents Asking to Be Added to Lincoln County, 1779

At the October-November 1779 session of the General Assembly two petitions were submitted requesting part of Burke County to be added to Lincoln County.  The first petition described an area “Beginning at the three Notched Island, on Cautaba River, thence to George Sealy,s on the South fork and thence to the Dividing line, between the County of Rutherford and the County of Lincoln.”  It bears the signatures and marks of Jacob (x) Heckelman, John (x) Bumgarnar, Andrew Chrislar, John (x) Keener, Michal (x) Millar, Isaac (x) Lollar Senar, Isaac Lollar Juner, Jacob Lollar, Thomas Lollar, Thomas (x) Welsh, Phillip (x) Salar, William (x) Armstrong, John (x) Saylor, James Willson, Robert Blackburn, Wiliam Cumberland, Danl McKesick, Wm (x) Keener, James Martin, Mikel (x) Hackelman, John Lines, John Que(?), William Gant, Reuben (x) Guttry, Fras. McCorkel, David McWhorter, Petter (x) Linbarger, Michal (x) Hoal, Niclass (x) Hellemom, James Fleming, Zachriah Saylers, Petter (x) Saylor, Iseah Saylers, Martain (x) Saylers, William Tuper(?), William Brison, Samuel Brison, ----- (obliterated), Joseph Cronkelton, James Henry, James Jowel, Stepen Fisher(?), John Hawkins, Adam Perkins, Vincent Tims(?), Archd Fleming, David Hudson, Cornalous Clark, Robt. Barklay, John Cronkelton, Joseph Cronkelton Junr, Samuel Thompson, Samuel Fisher, James -----(?), Thomas(?) Clark, John Thompson, Henry Thompson, Alexander Thompson, Robert McCusick, William Thompson, Reuben Simpson, Thomas Duncan, Elisha Sherrill, James Litten, John Robinson, Jacob Paintor, John Salling, Archebel Hambelton, (four faded names), James White, Nathan -----(?), William (x) ---by, John (x) -----, Samuel Hollandsworth, Moses Sherrill, James Clark, William Clark, William Simpson, James(?) Holzclaw, Jacob Sherrill, William Sherrill, Adam (x) Sherrill, Joshua Sherrill, Tomas Orsborn, Jacob Orsborn, John McCaeb, James Rankin, William Allexander, John Allexander, James Allexander, William Loyd, John Loyd, Jacob Gabril, John (x) Hoselberger, John Borland, Dav. Robinson.   The second petition described an area “Beginning On the Cautaba River Near beaties ford Running up the mainders of the River unto the three Noched Island, thence a direct line unto Joyners bottoms on the South Fork thence Such Course through the South fork Mountains to a point(?) To be Opposit to the Line that divides the Counties of Lincoln and Rutherford.”  It bears the signatures and marks of David Robinson, Philip Witener, Joseph Smith, Isaac Vanhorn, Jacob Summey, Martin Colter, Thos. Wasdin, John Mills, William Dearment, Anthony Keller, Jacob Costener, Daniel Kingry, Martain Shuford(?), Philip Bostin, John Fisher, Henry Witner, Michel Coler, Daniel Whitener, Peter Jünt, Jacop Shuferd, John Sufuford, John Moll, Danel Sufurd, David Shuferd, John Shuferd, Daniel McKessick, Josph Jons(?), Fradrack Graff, Jacop Yortey, Henry Hollman, Rudolph Conrad, Fredrich Widenberger, John Sigman, Gaorge Hapner, Anthony Hallman, John Hoselberger (x), Simon Haaß, Jacob Haas(?), Conrate Mingness, Peter -----(?), Christoph Siegman, William Cumberland, Henry Grose, Isaac Williams, John Horse, Johannes Freÿ, Johannes Schmeier, Wm M Dorson(?), Richd West, Henrich Eigert, Philiep Freÿ, Peter Eicharr, Jörg Eiger, Jb Weaver, William (x) Kiner W---(?), Bernhart Schneider, Henry Sumrow, Michael Sumrow, Michael Greindstaf.  The petitions may be viewed on frames 11 through 17 of Joint Papers of the General Assembly Session Records, Oct.-Nov. 1779, by linking to the N. C. Archives.  Click here.   (The link will open in a new tab or window.)

Petition of Burke County Residents Asking to Be Added to Lincoln County, ca. 1782

Although the Christmas 1778 petition and the 1779 petitions of some residents of Burke County in the area of what is now Catawba County had not succeeded, another petition to the General Assembly circa 1782 asked for the line between Burke County and Lincoln County to "begin at the Horse Ford on Catawba River & run thence to John Hauns on Henry’s River thence to William Orr’s on Jacobs River & thence to the Intersection of the Counties of Burke, Lincoln & Rutherford as they now stand.” Signers of the petition, mostly of German extraction, are as follows: Jacob Bollinger, John Willson, Henrey Eckerd, Lorants Eckerd, Christoph Siegman, John Houk, Philip Whitener, John Mull Sr, Michel Schell, Henrich Miller, Johannes Hahn, Bennedict Hoan, John Fisher, Nicholas Fry Senr., Phillip Fry, Peter Iker Junr., Gorg Schmidt, John Baxter, James Wilson, John Yont, Thomes Harison, Mickel Darbeig(?), Jacob Darborg(?), Geörg Siegman, John Butt, Martin Colter Jr, Philip Colter, Casber Schell, Peter Hahn, John Moyer, Friedrich Keither(?), Martain Antony, Daniel Boman, Fritrich Maüsser, Johanes Schmeier, James Cowan, Conrad Tipong, Philp Bulliger(?), Johannes Haaß, Georg Müßgeüng, Jacob Painter, George Carpenter, Melchi Hefner, William Witingburg, Michal Hevenner, William Frisel, Simin Joneses, John Joneses, Conrod Menges, Arter Hesshun, Mathias Bovy, Martin Colter, Philip Geiger, Isaac Vanhorn, John Wilson, Tevalt Huntsucker, William Sloan, Joshusa Hawn, Jacob Gurtner Jun, Jacob Gurtner Snr, Conrad Wagner, William Carril, Henry Pops, Henry Ashabran, Fredrick Shul, Love Evens, Thomas Litton, Elias Boaker, Charls Beaker, Jacob Gabrel, John Killen, Jacob Weaver, William Counce, John Bradly, Henrich Weitner, George Willfong Mjr., Henrich Weitner Capt, Jacob Gotner, Peter Moll J P, John Dellinger Capt., Joseph Steel J. P, Jno. Alexander J. P., John Robinson Cpt, Moses Sherrill, Henrich Bollinger, Henry Hollman, William Diehl Cat, John Hostlebarier, Jacob Gortner, James Scott, Barnnet Siegman, Wiliam Siegman, William Willson, John Shell, Saml. Steele, Daniel Weitner, John Willfong, Jacob Setzer, Richd. West, Willliam McMullin, William Sherrill, Jacob Sherrill, Joshua Perkins, Boston Bolack, Jacob Bolock, Gaspar Bolock, John Sumor, Thomas Puntch, Charls Williams, James Moorhead, Griffith Williams, Peder Jünd, Jacob Baker, John Brown, Aamos Brown, Andrew McCormick, Peter Adames, John Adames, Jacob Adames, Aquela Sherel, Judith Sherrill, Joseph Sherrill, William Alexander, Jacob Sherrill Senr, Jacob Sherrill Junr, Abraham Sherrill, Price Williams, William Bates, John Brigdes, William Orsborn, Jacob Orsborn, Isaac Robinson, William Adams, James Litten, Peter Standly, Isaac Lowrance, David Lowrance, James Mccuhghs, Adam Bolch, David Falls, James Hennen, Peter Grund, Fradrach Graff, Anthoney Grav, William Graves, Eberhard Reichman, Georg Menges, Johanes Menges, Georrg Menges, Jacob Rosenman, Georg Siegman, Balser Siegman, Goerg Siegman, Berndhart Siegman, Henrig Siegman, Hannes Siegman, Jerg Siegman, Bernt Siegman.  The petition may be viewed on frames 1-9 of the April-May 1782 General Assembly Session Records, Box 2, Folder 24.  Click here.   (The link will open in a new tab or window.) The petition had successful results and part of Burke was added to Lincoln as follows: “Beginning at Sharrel’s ford, running with the road leading towards Henry Whitners, as far as Matthew Wilson’s thence a direct course to Simon Horse’s, on the waters of Clark’s Creek, thence a direct course to the Fish-Dam ford of the south fork of the Catawba river, between James Wilson and David Robinson, and from thence a southwest course to Earl Granville’s old line, and that all that part of Burke county lying southeast of the line above described shall henceforth be taken off from Burke, and shall be added and remain to Lincoln county.”

The 1782 Rutherford County Tax List

View this tax list by linking to the N. C. Archives. (The link will open in a new tab or window.)   Click here.   Sue Hill Koon's booklet of transcriptions of this tax list and the 1790 census is available from the Society. See Books for Sale.

Bill and Act Annexing Part of Burke County to Rutherford County, 1786-1787

An act was passed by the General Assembly on 6 January 1787 adding part of Burke County to Rutherford County.  No associated petition has been located.   The area encompassed part of what is now known as Golden Valley in Rutherford County as well as northern parts of what is now Cleveland County.  The reason for the change was that due to “a ledge of mountains that divide the waters of first Little Broad river from the waters of Silver and Cain creeks, it is extremely difficult for the inhabitants on the south side of the said ledge to attend at the court house of the county of Burke.”  Consequently, “all that part of the county of Burke lying to the southeast of the aforesaid mountains so as to include all of first Little Broad river, shall be, and the same is hereby annexed to and declared to be within the county of Rutherford.”  The handwritten bill of 5 December 1786 may be viewed on three frames of General Assembly Session Records, Nov. 1786-Jan. 1787, by linking to the N. C. Archives.  Click here.   (The link will open in a new tab or window.)  For information on persons who received or attempted to receive Burke County land grants in the area impacted by this act click here.

The 1792 Petition from Eastern Rutherford County for a New Voting Location

This 10 December 1792 petition from eastern Rutherford for a new voting location may be viewed on frames 1-12 of General Assembly House bills Nov. 1792 - Jan. 1793 by linking to the N. C. Archives. (The link will open in a new tab or window.)   Click here.   For a transcription of the names see the Bulletin, February 1988, pp. 23-27.


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