Andersons of Colonial N. Carolina

meant what they said, said what they meant

(Updated) Brown or Boon?

with 12 comments

With a rhetorical question an answer is not really expected… I suppose I am seeking opinions. Note in these two patents the peculiar spelling. “Wm. Bown”

I suppose what I am alleging is that it seems possible to me that when/if this record was transcribed or re-copied as I assume then the scribe doing the re-copy was just as confused as we are a couple hundred years later about this name Brown or Boon.

The name BROWN is not easy to misspell, I don’t think. In this case the error is made TWICE.

In my research it is apparent that two men – one named William Brown and the other named William Boon each had patented land “extremely” near each other.

I don’t think that these two entries in the Deed Books are the originals… it has been shown over the years that as the original deed books were dissolving into dust, book worms and such… the books were painstakingly re-copied as the only means available at the time to preserve the records.

I’m curious what you folks might hazard a guess as to which name seems more reasonable… Brown or Boun?

The NC records come down with Brown… but I am suspicious…

NARRATIVE: Wm. Brown was issued Unknown acres of land on 08 Mar 1711 in Chowan County, located “On Moratock river”. This was recorded in Land Patent Book 1 page 177 as Chowan County Grant # .

Alerts:Archivist Notes at bottom
Corrections at bottom

*Issued: 08 Mar 1711
County: Chowan
Book: 1 pg: 177

Entered: (no date)

Other Identifiers:
File no.: 93

Subjects (in archivist order):
Brown, William
Roanoke River

An update… to add a bit more fuel to this fire…

I found another deed .. well 2 deeds actually, but written in another hand.

The particular peculiarity which still leaves me puzzled is the DATE mentioned in these 2 deeds.

5 March 1712 … same date as the above deed referenced as File 92

So NOW what do you detectives think? Is this a Brown patent or a Boon patent? I consider

it a Big Deal when I question the accuracy of actual historical records.

Written by anderson1951

June 1, 2021 at 3:36 am

Posted in Uncategorized

12 Responses

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  1. William Brown is father in law to Gideon Gibson
    William Boon is father in law of Hubbard Gibson

    William Boon’s wife is a sister to William Brown



    June 1, 2021 at 3:45 am

    • I don’t see an answer to my question? (smiling)



      June 1, 2021 at 3:54 am

      • It is clearly Bown to my eye. Bown is a perfectly good Welsh surname. Yet another spanard in the works! It is a shame that the original documents perished. At that time paper was still of superior quality made from linen and/or cotton rags – “we” didn’t start using wood pulp and acidic sizing until the 19th century. My guess would be poor storage conditions leading to mold rather than worms.



        June 1, 2021 at 8:57 am

  2. Gideon1 Gibson, born say 1700, settled near the Roanoke River in

    North Carolina about 1720. He purchased 200 acres in what was then

    Chowan County on the south side of the Roanoke River on 24 July 1721

    [C-1:142]. He acquired seven slaves and over one thousand acres of

    land in present day Halifax County, North Carolina, and on the north

    side of the Roanoke River in Northampton County. Sometime before 22

    October 1728 he married Mary Brown, born about 1705, the white

    daughter of a prosperous planter, William Brown. She (and each of her

    6 brothers and sisters) received 150 acres from her father by his 15

    December 1718 Chowan County will which was proved in July 1719 [SS

    841]. Gideon and his wife, Mary, sold this 150 acres “bounded

    according to the Will of William Brown Gentl decd…” on 22 October

    1728 [Bertie DB C:36].

    Some nifty notes on Hubbard Gibson…

    Click to access Prince-George.pdf



    June 1, 2021 at 4:52 am

  3. It’s fair to infer “Boun” is more reasonable based solely upon the document.
    There is no visual evidence of an “r” however, it does appear to look as “Bown.”
    Note the writing style of “Branch” at the second paragraph, five lines down: the “B” and “r” are distinctive and, flow of ink does not connect between the “B” and “r”.
    Also, see “Boyd” whereas the “B” and “o” are not connected as well as “Beginning” thus leaving no room for a possible second letter “r.”


    Jennifer Thornton

    June 1, 2021 at 8:38 am

  4. William Brown died before 1718 and this land was in specific terms to his children including daughters. Ann Brown married John Branch and the pair sold it.



    June 1, 2021 at 9:23 am

    • I found some of my notes which mention John Branch. I think I was looking at the wife of a Joyner being a sister of Wm Browne (son of the Indian Trader, John Browne of Kingsale)

      The accounts below are near the modern town of Halifax, NC…

      (My point is to eliminate a rival Elizabeth Joyner)

      James Milliken m. daughter of Joseph Joyner
      (from Helen Sharpe notes)

      Bertie Co. Records:
      BC C-91, dated 3 March 1728/29. James Millikin & Henry Gustin to Barnabe Mackinnie…15 pounds for 150 acres , part of 640 acres patent to Willliam Brown 1 April 1713. This 150 acres sold by Gideon Gibson and wife, Mary, to Millikin & Gustin. Commonly called ?Walnut Forte Survey: adj. Joseph Joyner, William Brown. wit: Thomas Craghill, William Dewitt (?). May Court 1729. Robert Forster C/C
      (This is without a doubt the William Browne I associate with the Indian Trader… his daughter married Gideon Gibson)

      BC C-91, dated 5 March 1728: James Millikin & Henry Gustin to John Mckinnie…power of atty. to ack. deed of sale for 150 Acres on south side of Morrattuck River to Barnabe Mackinnie. Wit: Thomas Craghill, jurat, William Duett. May 13, 1729. Robert Forster C/C

      BC C-245, dated 19 June 1730: Joseph Joyner, Jun. To James Millikin, merchangt…300 pounds for 230 acres on SS Roanoke River where Joseph Joyner did live. By two deeds of grant (1) 5 Aug 1723. Signed by Maj. Barnabe Mckinnie for 150 A. of land (2) dated 25 October 1723. Signed by John Brown and Mary Brown for 80 acres of land. Wit: John Green, Edmond Simmons, James Wilkeson, Mary Simmons. 11 Aug. 1730. Thomas Hansford D. C/C
      Minutes of the General Court of North Carolina, North Carolina. General Court, July 28, 1727 – August 02, 1727

      A presentment against John Brown for having left his Wife the daughter of Barnaby Mackennie and cohabits with another which he acknowledges to be his lawfull Wife both of the Sayd Women within this Government.

      (My assumption is this is the son of William Browne… seems to be in a pickle… his sister with Gideon Gibson removed to South Carolina… and I find this which may be him?)

      Read the Petition of John Brown, planter shewing that the Petitoner had four persons in family for whom he has not received any lands pursuant to his Majesty’s Royal bounty, and as there is a tract of land containing 800 acres surveyed above 10 years ago for Gideon Gibson and at pres’t a Plat thereof in the Survey’r General’s Office, as appears by his certificate, and is vacant, by not being applied for in the time prescribed in the Gazette, the Pet’r herefore humbly prays that the Survey’r General be directed to Certify the said Plat for the use of the Petitoner, and in his name that it may be granted him accordingly. To which was annexed a certificate by Geor Hunter… that 200 acres of land was surveyed on the NE side of the Pedee River for Gideon Gibson on the 13th day of April 1736 in pursuant of a Warrant from Gov’r Johnson, dated March 6th, 1733, and that a Plat thereof was returned into the Survery’r General’s Office on the 18th day of June 1736 which has laid there ever since without any application made for y’e same tho advertized in the Gazette, August 5th 1743… the prayer was granted… Sorry… I do get sidetracked…

      BC C-247, dated 8 Aug 1730: John Branch & wife Ann to James Millikin, merchant. 26 pds. for 160 acres on SS Morratock River ?bounded according to the ___of William Brown dec?d…? Wit: John Brooks, John Joyner, Thomas Jones. Aug. Court 1730.

      BC C-248, dated 23 July 1730: John Bobbit to James Millikin…590 acres ?in the Low Grounds near Clerk?s Meadow….? Adj. William Boon. Wit: Thomas Bryant, Simon Jeffreys, Henry Guston.

      Halifax Co., NC DB 1-187, dated15 Feb 1736: James Millikin to Margaret Millikin et al: to well-beloved wife Margaret, slaves and land and money to John Millikin, my son, land when he comes of age, slaves to James Millikin, my son, land under same restrictions as son John, slaves to daughter Agnes 2 negro girls and 1/6 part of household furniture etc. to daughter Elizabeth negroes and 1/6 part of my goods and chattels to daughter Ann slaves and 16 part of household goods At a court held for Edge. Prect. the 3rd Tuesday in May 1737. Thomas Kearney D. C. Ct.
      (Elizabeth Joyner, his wife, must have died and he remarried Margaret______) This deed is in essence, a “will”… so he knew he was gravely ill in 1736…

      Halifax Co. DB 1-189: a letter to his friends: ask friends Rev. Mr. John Boyd, Mr. Nathan Joyner my brother-in-law, Mr. Phillip Rayford, Mr. Joseph Lane, Robert Warren to manage affairs and look after his children Wit: James Thompson, Richard Grandson, John Wolford, Joseph Montgomery His Majesties Att?y General, John Hodgson, esquire, Joseph Anderson, Robert Foster At a court held for Edge. Prect. the – Tuesday in May 1737 T. Kearney C. C. Ct.
      (again this deed is essentially a continuation of his will…in my opinion)
      wife Elizabeth Joyner (Sharpe notes)

      Halifax Co. DB 1-228, dated 22 Nov 1737: The deposition of Major James Thompson of Edge. prect. the said Thompson sayeth that in Nov. 1731 he heard a dispute between Col James Millikin and Edward Simmons over a deed made to the said Millikin by Joseph Joyner his father-in-law Sworn this 22 Nov 1737 before me Barnaby McKinnie. Reg. (place not given) Feb. Ct. 1737. Thomas Kearney D. C. Ct.

      Halifax Co. DB 1-229, dated 22 Nov 1737: The deposition of Nathan Joyner and Ann his wife: the said Nathan sayeth that at the time James Millikin late of Edge. Prect., esquire was married to Elizabeth Joyner, daughter of Joseph Joyner, he heard a dispute over a deed to be made to John the eldest son of the said Elizabeth and thought the deed had been made and Ann Joyner wife of the said Nathan sayeth she was present at the same time and hear the same words. Sworn this 22 Nov 1737 before me Barnaby MacKinnie Reg. (place not given) Feb. Ct. 1737. T. Kearney C. C. Ct.

      Must have been a second marriage for Elizabeth to have a son John Joyner. Was she married to a Joyner?
      (it seems to me Elizabeth may have had a bastard son before marrying James Millikin)

      Halifax Co. DB 4-256, dated 19 May 1752: Paul Patrick and Agnes my wife of Edg. Co. to John Joyner (co. not identified) 19 May 1752. for the love and respect we bear unto our natural brother and for 5 shillings proclamation money 220 acres on the south side of Roanoke river, joining William Hurst and Benjamin Sherrod and is the land whereon one Joseph Joyner formerly lived and where Col. James Millikin last lived which land was granted to the said Millikin by the said Joyner 19 June 1730. Wit: John Pope, Fras. Byll. Haynes Reg. Edg. Co. May Ct. 1752. B. Wynns C. Ct. Note: Agnes is the daughter of James Millikin.

      Halifax Co. DB 4-415: Paul Patrick and Agnes his wife of Edge. Co. to William Hurst of Edge. Co. 22 Feb 1753 20 pounds current money of Va. 220 acres in the fork of Conocanarah swamp as by patent to Joseph Joyner 1 Feb 1725 and by the sd. Joyner conveyed to James Millikin late of Edge. merchant 18 Oct 1733 Wit: William Kinchin, Jr. William Richmond Reg. Edg. Co. Feb Ct. 1753 B. Wynns C. Ct.

      Halifax Co. DB 6-113, dated 10 Nov 1756: Wm Hurst to Wm Richmond……220 acres…as by patent to Joseph Joyner 1 Feb 1725 and by the sd. Joyner conveyed to James Millikin, late merchant which sd. land descended after the decease of James Millikin the elder to James Millikan the younger and by the decease of the sd. James the younger came unto Paul Patrick by right of his wife Agnes and Anna Millikin her sister who conveyed the land to Wm Hurst…….



      June 2, 2021 at 1:43 am

  5. I’ll throw in a few comments…1.) first a picky but important point, the first image above is not a deed book, it is the patent entry book. 2.) Margaret Hofmann abstracted these as “Bown,” which is clearly what it is in the patent book, in her Province of North Carolina 1664-1729 Abstracts of Land Patents (Weldon, NC: Roanoke News Co., 1979). She mentions in her forward that the patent “books have undoubtedly been copied on occasion.” 3.) Say “Bown” out loud and it could sound like “Boon” in a certain accent. 4.) These are the only two “Bowns” in Hofmann’s abstracts of this period, but there are 11 others mentioning William Boon and 16 mentioning William Brown. 5.) The two Chowan deeds sure sounds like the same tracts of land to me. Except the 1711/12 patents refer to the Cypress Branch, while the deeds refer to the Beaver Dam Branch. So now prove that those are the same waterways. *grin*


    Traci Thompson

    June 2, 2021 at 8:46 am

    • I’m deep in the woods on these patents and starting to get a handle on them. Like everyone else seems to be… I’m just not ready to make a call and make the “challenge”. Nice point that Ms Hofmann called this as she saw it; I respect that.



      June 2, 2021 at 9:04 am

  6. Ah but wait, spoke too soon…look at same Chowan deed book p. 145-147….one deed from James Anderson to Robert Sims and two from William Boon to Robert & Henry Sims. Two mention the Cypress Swamp/Branch and one mentions the Beaver Dam Branch.


    Traci Thompson

    June 2, 2021 at 8:57 am

    • I know…I know… its driving me nuts.

      But I think some Browne deeds near there but South Side of Moratock (Roanoke) also mention the very irritating Cypress Swamp.



      June 2, 2021 at 9:05 am

  7. I’ll add a section to the post in order to use my graphics.



    June 2, 2021 at 9:59 am

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