Thursday, April 15, 2010

Samuel Winslow and Martha McRee Davidson

(click on photograph for larger image)

Samuel Winslow Davidson (1782-1858) and Martha McRee Davidson (1781-1848).

The following is from The Heritage of Old Buncombe County, Doris Cline Ward, Editor (1981) at 190 (Article #306, "Col. Samuel Winslow Davidson" by Dorothy Hyde and William E. Bryson):

Samuel Winslow Davidson was born April 2, 1781 [gravestone shows 1782] in Burke County (now McDowell), the son of Major William D. and Margaret (McConnell) Davidson. He married Martha McRee, who had been born Sept. 11, 1781 in Mecklenburg County, the daughter of the Rev. Dr. James and Rachel (Cruser) McRee of Rowan County. Her mother Rachel had come from Staten Island, N.Y. Dr. McRee, Martha's father, was a graduate of Princeton College, New Jersey and was pastor of Steel Creek Presbyterian Church, and then Centre Church in Iredell County, coming to the Swannanoa settlement in 1830 when he retired, to live with his two daughters, Mrs. Gudger and Mrs. Davidson. He preached at many area Presbyterian Churches during this period until his death in 1840.

Samuel Davidson held the rank of Colonel and fought in the War of 1812. He owned property in the Swannanoa settlement inherited from his father, that covered a large amount of territory extending as far as the present location of Warren Wilson College. His living came from the bartering of lumber and other general plantation produce drawn from the land.

After the death of his wife Martha, Samuel married Elizabeth (Vance) Davidson, widow of his brother William Mitchell Davidson. Samuel's death occurred on October 14, 1858, and he and his first wife Martha, are buried in the Swannanoa Presbyterian Church Cemetery. There children were:

Margaret Eliza, b. 1805, married John Erwin Patton; Joseph Cruser Davidson; Adeline, married Alfred B. Fortune; Harriet, married Robert Penland; William Franklin Davidson, b. Sept 23, 1812 -- d. 1902, married on 6-17-1839, Minerva Foster; Mary E., b. 1813, married Olney Burgin; Albert Cruser Davidson (1815-1850) married Sophronia Burgin; and Samuel Winslow Davidson, Jr., b. 1819. Taken from the writings of Foster Sondley.

Life dates also seen as 1772-1856. Source: N.C. Genealogy-McDowell (Pack Memorial Library, Asheville, North Carolina), but this is not consistent with most records and not with the gravestone at the Swannanoa Presbyterian Church.

Will of Samuel W. Davidson of Buncombe County, North Carolina (Will Book A, Page 199)

Request to be buried beside his first wife. Place not legible.
Wife: "present wife" Elizabeth
Children: son Samuel; son William F.
"amongst my heirs except John Bargin who has treated me badly & now owes me $600 which he refuse to pay"
Slaves: girl Rebeca; old negros: Lydia; Leah; Rosannah; Nan "should chose their own masters to live with"
Executors: son Wm. F. Davidson and Alburtis Bargin?
Witnesses: L. C. Clayton; Bedford Sherrill
Signed: Samuel W. Davidson (seal)
Dated: 9 May 1858
Probated: no date given

The following is from Marriage and Death Notices and Extant Asheville, N.C. Newspapers 1840-1870, An Index, Robert M. Topkins, Compiler and Editor (1977) at 74:

Death Notice: Davidson, Col. Samuel W., Oct. 15, 1858, in an altercation with D. V. Shope on Swannanoa, about 10 miles east of Asheville (Asheville News, Oct. 21, 1848).

Martha McRee Davidson (1781-1848)

Samuel and Martha McRee Davidson Gravestone


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