The Shirley Association has been a member of the Guild of One-Name Studies since 1988
 
Theory of Other Children of
Richard Shirley of Laurens Co SC
 
   
 

Pedigree Theory

Shirley Migration to East Tennessee.
It is clear that at least two of the children of Richard Shirley of Laurens Co SC, Robert Shirley and John Shirley migrated to eastern Tennessee around the time of the Revolutionary War, then moved back to SC afterward. Moreover, their mother Mary Shirley, identified as 'Widow Shirley" in Washington Co TN documents, was also part of the migration. The following Pinson family research parallels the trek made by the Shirleys

"In May 1767 a 250 ac tract was surveyed [for Aaron Pinson] on the NE side of the Saluda River in the area that became Laurens Co SC. Raeburns Creek meeting house was built nearby in 1767. Aaron Pinson preached there and had charge fo the Little River off Saluda church in 1771-2. Religous harassment, lawlessness and a massive Indian raid in 1773 caused settlers to flee the area. Many members of the old mother church at Sandy Creek had gone west by 1771 over the mountains into what is now eastern Tennessee. by late summer of 1775 Pinson and various other members of the SC churches had settled there also. They refused to move back east of the mountains, built forts acquired ammunition, formed their own government and took their stand against the British and Indians on 20 and 21 July 1776. He was named justice of peach in 1776 for Washington Co NC and served Cherokee Creek (a branch of the Nolichucky) Baptist Church after removing to Wilkes Co NC by 1782 (see item for Thomas Shirley, his son in law, in Wilkes Co). He and his family had returned by 1784 to Laurens Co SC where he resumed his pastorate of Raeburn Creek Church and served until his death by 1800."

We find the Shirleys enumerated in Washington Co TN, along with members of the Aaron Pinson family, during the war:

4 Feb 1777 Womack's Fort (now Sullivan Co TN) Capt Womack Co Militia Fincastle Co VA. Payroll

"Washington County"

Robert Shirley 90 days on duty enlisted 15 July dismissed Oct 12
Edward Shirley 90 days on duty enlisted 15 July Sept 30
John Shirley 90 days on duty enlisted 15 July Oct 12
Thomas Shirley 90 days on duty enlisted 15 July Oct 12
William Shirley 90 days on duty enlisted 15 July [ ?]

We can formally confirm their identity with the following land transaction by John Shirley, son of Richard Shirley of Laurens Co SC, who after much litigation was finally granted 639 acres of land in Washington Co TN (an area then claimed by NC) in 1791, after John and his family had returned to Laurens Co SC.

9/11/1808 Washington Co TN DB 12 pg 62-4 John McKinney attorney in fact for John Shirley, Laurance District SC to William Leach next ot his other land, part of Sherley's 639 ac NC grant in 1791, on Cherokee Cr

We also find several Washington Co TN documents confirming the Shirley's connection to the Aaron Pinson family

1778 Joseph Pinson (deed) Cherokee Creek on Widow Sherley's line.

1780 John Layman 100 ac Washington Co border John Shurleys line where he lives adj Jos. Pension, John Hollaway

1786 (deed)..."where Aron Pinson and Robert Shurley formerly lived".


Children of Richard Shirley of Laurens Co SC (Theory)

1. John Shirley of Laurens Co SC (known)

2. Robert Shirley of Laurens Co SC (known)

But what about the other Shirleys named in the above 1777 militia list, Thomas, William and Edward, Shirley?

3. Thomas Shirley - I theorize that Thomas Shirley of Spartenburg Co SC, born about 1750, is another son of Richard Shirley of Laurens Co SC, and brother of John and Robert Shirley.

4. William Shirley - I theorize that William Shirley of Spartanburg Co SC is another son of Richard Shirley of Laurens Co SC.

5. Edward Shirley (coming)

 

   


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