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  info sent by Roy H. Huddleston Nov 2002

Daniel Sherley came over in about 1624 on the Bona Nova which Captain John Huddleston was the master of.


The Bona Nova Voyages~1618 The Bona Nova, from London, arrived at Virginia.

Ship and Passenger Information: Passengers from the Port of London on the Bona Nova to Virginia:

Hopson, Thomas~Age 12 in Virginia Muster, February 4, 1624/5

Walters, William~Age 27 in Virginia Muster, February 4, 1624/5

Departed in August, 1619, with 120 passengers. Sent by the Virginia Company. (Source: The Voyage...To Verginia 1619 by Ferdinando Yate)

November, 1619 The Bona Nova, from London, arrived at Virginia.  Source: "Hotten's Lists" Burthen: 200 tons (Source: The Voyage...To Verginia 1619 by Ferdinando Yate)

Passengers from the Port of London on the Bona Nova to Virginia:

Barry, William (Sgt.)~See name in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Brocke, John~Age 19 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Calder, Thomas~Age 24 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Claxon, John~See name in Virginia Muster, February 4, 1624/5

Crowder, Mr. Hugh~See name in Virginia Muster, February 4, 1624/5

Dickson, Stephen~Age 25 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Evands, William~Age 23 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Gaskoyne, Thomas~Age 34 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Goodman, Robart~Age 24 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Gyffith, Ambrose~Age 33 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Hattfild, Joseph~Age 24 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Hill, Francis~Age 22 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Hobson, Edward~See name in Virginia Muster, January 23, 1624/5

Levett, George~Age 29 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Mansfeild, David~See name in Virginia Muster, February 4, 1624/5

Morris, John~Age 24 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Osborne, Ralph~Age 22 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Osborne, Thomas (Lt.)~See name in Virginia Muster, January 23, 1624/5

Rimwell, Adam~Age 24 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Rookines, William~Age 26 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Seirson, Cutbert~Age 22 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Sherley, Daniell~Age 30 in Virginia Muster, January 23, 1624/5

Smith, Susanna~See name in Virginia Muster, February 4, 1624/5 (Her husband, John, arrived on the Elsabeth in 1611)

Vaghan, John~Age 23 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5

Weldon, William~See name in Virginia Muster, January 23, 1624/5

Wynwill, Christopher~Age 26 in Virginia Muster, February 7, 1624/5 1620

Sources: Spotsylvania County Records by William Armstrong Crozier Copyright Baltimore Southern Book Company 1955


Deed Book H
1771-1774 Jany. 10, 1773. Robert Huddleston of Berkely Par., Spts. Co. and Elizabeth, his wife, to Elijah Dismukes of Drisdale Par., Caroline Co. L40 curr. 113 a. in Berkelely Par., conveyed by John Huddleston, heir-at-law of Robt. Huddleston, Dced, to the said Robert Huddleston. Witnesses, Jno. Shurley, George Shepherd, Lewis Shackleford, Elizabeth Shurley, Wm. Graves Ashburn, John Kennedy.

No date of Record.


Robert Huddleston born 1734 and Elizabeth Carter born 1738 married in 1759 in Saint George's Parish, Spotsylvania County.

Elizabeth Carter was the daughter of Joseph Carter and Catherine Ammon. Joseph Carter was acknowledge by his cousin Robert "King" Carter. Joseph Carter and Robert 'King" Carter both had daughters named Elizabeth.


[Robert Carter third son of Robert 'King' Carter married Priscilla Bladen Churchill. Priscilla Churchill also married John Lewis. John Lewis also married Mary Waller and they had Elizabeth (Betty) Lewis. Elizabeth Lewis married Constable Robert Huddleston in 1739 at the Berkeley Parish in 1739].

Mary Waller's father was John Waller who had it out with Lewis Craig.

Baptist Persecution

An Anthology

How "Swearing John" Became a New Man - "Swearing John Waller," a man once known to his rowdy friends as opposed to all forms of religion, became a new man. Instead of opposing religion, he became a Baptist preacher in Virginia at a time when Baptist preachers were persecuted by the state. Waller's life was changed after he served as a member of a grand jury bearing charges against Lewis Craig, a Baptist preacher. The grand jury indicted Craig for preaching the Baptist gospel and holding unlawful worship services without permission of the state-supported church of Virginia.

Following the hearing, the grand jury retired to a tavern. There Craig boldly faced his accusers. "When I was in all kinds of folly and vice," Craig told the men, "the courts took no notice of me. But now that I have forsaken all those vices and am warning men to forsake and repent of their sins, you bring me to the bar as a common criminal. How do you explain all this?" The grand jury could not answer the Baptist preacher's counter charges, and Waller could not get away from Craig's boldness. For eight months he pondered the difference between his life and that of Lewis Craig. He began to attend church and to listen to other Baptist preachers. At last he made a profession of faith, was baptized, and began preaching the Baptist gospel that he once persecuted.

Spotsylvania County Records by William Armstrong Crozier Copyright Baltimore

Southern Book Company 1955 Deed Book E 1751-1761 page 280 Octr. 16th, 1770.

John Huddleston of Johnston Co., North Carolina, son and heir at law of Robert Huddleston, late of Spts. Co., Va., Decd., to Robert Huddleston, now of Berkeley Par., Spts. Co., Va. Whereas, Robert Huddleston, Decd., did, by his last will and testament, desire that a tract of 113 a. in Spts. Co., whereon he formerly lived, should be sold and the money arising there from equally divided amongst all his children, and the sd. Robt., party to these preseants, having purchased the shares of all the sd. children; and the sd. John, being satisfied with his proportionable part and and being desirous that the will of his decd. father should be carried out, etc., by this Indenture, conveys the sd. Robert, 113 a. in Berkely Par., Spts. Co.

Witnesses John Waller, junr., Lewis Craig, James Chiles, Andrew Tribble. No date of record.

Spotsylvania County Records by William Armstrong Crozier Copyright Baltimore

Southern Book Company 1955 Deed Book C-1734-1742 page 146 Nov 30, 1738.

John Waller, Jr., of St. Geo. Par., Spts. Co., planters, to William Hawkins of Orange Co., Gent., to Henry downs of St. Mark's Par., Orange Co., Gent. L2 15s. curr. Lot No. 56, in town of Fredksburg. John Waller, Edwd. Hearndon, Jr.; Robt. Huddleston, Z. Lewis. Feby 6, 1738.

Yet they had the stoutest hearts, the most masculine intellects, and some of them were eloquent to a proverb; a perfect phalanx of Christian Spartans. About thiry of them were put in prison, some of them several times, but by preaching Jesus through the gates and on the high walls many were brought to Christ. Rev. Eleazar Clay, the guardian of the great statesman, Henry Clay, wrote from Chesterfield County to John Williams: 'The preaching at the prison is not attended in vain, for we hope that several are converted, while others are under great distress and made to cry out, What shall we do to be saved?' and he begged him to come down and baptize the converts. Crowds gathered around the prisons at Fredericksburg, in the counties of King and Queen, Culpepper, Middlesex and Essex, Orange and Caroline. They were preached to by Harris, Ireland, Pickett, the Craigs, of whom there were three brothers, Greenwood, Barrow, Weathersford, Ware, Tinsley, Waller, Webber and others whose names will be honored while Virginia exists. And there are some noted cases of holy triumph, as in the prison at Culpepper, whence Ireland, much after the order of Bunyan, who was 'had home to prisonin the county jail of Bedford,' dated his letters, from 'my palace in Culpepper.' On the very spot where the prison stood, where powder was castunder the floor to blow him up, and brimstone was burnt to suffocate him and poison was administered to kill him; on that spot where he preached through the iron grates to the people, there the Baptist meeting-house now stands; and the Church which occupies it numbers more than 200 members. These diabolical schemes were all frustrated and, after much suffering, he barely escaped with his life; yet he says: 'My prison was a place in which I enjoyed much of the divine presence; a day seldom passed without some token of the divine goodness toward me.' Waller, a most powerful man, who before his conversion was the terror of the good, being known as the 'Devil's Adjutant and Swearing Jack,' spent 113 days in four different prisons, besides enduring all forms of abuse; but in Virginia alone he immersed 2,000 believers and helped to constitute eighteen Churches. Want of space demands silence concerning a list of most illustrious ministers and laymen, whose names will never be honored as they deserve, until some equally illustrious son of Virginia shall arrange and shape her abundant mass of Baptist material with the integrity of a Bancroft and the eloquence of a Macaulay.

For three months in succession three men of God lay in the jail at Fredericksburg for the crime of preaching the glorious Gospel of the blissful God-Elders Lewis Craig, John Waller and James Childs. But their brethren stood nobly by these grand confessors. Truly, in the words of Dr. Hawks, 'No dissenters in Virginia, experienced for a time harsher treatment than did the Baptists. They were beaten and imprisoned; and cruelty taxed its ingenuity to devise new modes of punishment and annoyance. The usual consequences followed. Persecution made friends for its victims; and the men who were not permitted to speak in public found willing auditors in the sympathizing crowds who gathered around the prisons to hear them preach from the grated windows. It is not improbable that this very opposition imparted strength in another mode, inasmuch as it at last furnished the Baptists with a common ground on which to make resistance.' [Hist. Prot. Ep. Ch. in Va., p. 121]

Commissioned December 2, 1769 as Lower Spotsylvania Baptist Church, John Waller founded and became the first pastor of what now is known as Wallers Baptist Church-named in honor of John Waller and his nephew Absalom Waller.  Absalom served as the second pastor of Wallers for over 30 years. At its organization, it had 154 members and there were "few, if any less than 1,500 members" during John Waller's pastorate from 1770 to 1793. With over 230 years of continuous service, Wallers has the longest continuous service of any Baptist Church in the state of Virginia.

When reviewing the life of John Waller, we are also reviewing the life of many of the early settlers who came to the young colonies to escape religious persecution in Europe. England, who ruled the colonies, established the Church of England was subject to the law established by the church and dissenters were punished and jailed for their beliefs. This was especially true of the Baptists. A GENERAL HISTORY OF THE BAPTIST DENOMINATION IN AMERICA, AND OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD By David Benedict 1813 London: Printed by Lincoln & Edmands, No. 53, Cornhill, for the Author Read and Harris, particularly the latter, were men of great zeal and indefatigable diligence and perseverance in their Master's cause. Their spirit was caught by many of the young prophets in Orange and Spottsylvania.Lewis and Elijah Craig, John Waller, James Childs, John Burrus, and others, animated by an ardent desire for the advancement of their Master's kingdom, sallied forth in every direction, spreading the tidings of peace and salvation wherever they went. These plants were watered by the labors of the Spottsylvania preachers, particularly J. Waller, who, early in his visits to Goochland, baptized William Webber and Joseph Anthony, who, with Reuben Ford, had been exhorting, etc. previous to their being baptized.

One William Mullin, afterwards an useful preacher, had moved from Middlesex and settled in the county of Amelia. When the gospel reached his neighborhood, Mr. Mullin cordially embraced it. Going afterwards, in 1769, on a visit to his relations in Middlesex and Essex, by arguments drawn from the scripture, he convinced his brother John, and his brother-inlaw James Greenwood, with several others, of the necessity of being born again. Of these, some found peace in believing, before they ever heard the gospel publickly preached. November, 1770, John Waller and John Burrus came down and preached in Middlesex They continued preaching at and near the same place for three days; great crowds came out. Waller baptized five; but persecution began to rage. Some said they were deceivers; others that they were good men. On the second day, a magistrate attempted to pull Waller off the stage, but the clergyman of the parish prevented it. The next day a man threw a stone at Waller while he was preaching; but the stone missed him, and struck a friend of the man who threw it. James Greenwood and others now began to hold publick meetings by day and by night; much good was done by them. Many believed, and only waited an opportunity to be baptized, there being no ordained preacher nearer than Spottsylvania.



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