Henry Franklin & Margaret Hensley
Any information is only as reliable as its source. Evaluate the following sources accordingly.
I'm not certain at this point of the identity of Henry's parents. Some researchers claim that his father was Lawrence Franklin, some claim Edward Franklin, and some believe the line was actually Henry, son of Lawrence, son of Edward. And to really muddy the waters, John Franklin and Susan Wells have been suggested. Then there's the confusion over his maternal line. Once again, Miss Mathis, possible daughter of Benjamin Mathis, vies with Mary Payne, and it may be that Lawrence Franklin had two wives, a Mathis and a Payne. I can't claim to have researched this question, but as Lawrence and Edward resided in VA well before 1700, it may be that sufficient records establishing familial connections simply don't exist.
He is believed to be the Henry Franklin who resided in Orange County, VA from at least 1739 through 25 May 1753, when he was served on jury duty. [Carol Sikes, from Orange County Index to Court Orders and Minutes, original located in Book 2, p. 120; Sparacio, Orange County, Virginia Orders 1753-1754, p. 74]
10 Apr 1765: Henry purchased 156 acres on a branch of Beaver Creek for £42 from [sons-in-law] Joseph and Richard Ballenger. Witnesses: Drury Tucker and [sons] James and Henry Franklin Junior. On that same day, Henry Franklin and Drury Tucker witnessed a deed from Joseph Ballenger to Richard Ballenger in Amherst County, VA, also on a branch of Beaver Creek. [Davis, Abstracts of Amherst County, Virginia Deeds, Vols. 1 and 2, p. 338, 335]
4 Mar 1771: Henry Franklin Senior witnessed a deed of Joseph Ballenger, along with [son] John Franklin and John Smith. [Davis, Abstracts of Amherst County, Virginia Deeds, Vols. 1 and 2, p. 174, from Book A]
25 Mar 1771: Henry Franklin Senior witnessed a deed of Joseph Ballenger, and was listed in that deed as the owner of adjoining land on Smith's Mountain in Amherst County. [Davis, Abstracts of Amherst County, Virginia Deeds, Vols. 1 and 2, p. 221]
1782 Tax List, Amherst County, VA: Henry Franklin Senior had 1 white, 3 blacks, 5 cattle, and 3 horses. He was listed next to Mary Ann Franklin, widow of Henry Junior.
1783 Tax List, Amherst County, VA: Henry was shown with 6 whites; 2 blacks. [Genealogical Publishing Company, Head of Families, First Census of the U.S. 1790, Virginia: Records of the State Enumerations 1782-1785, p. 49]
17 Nov 1784: He gave consent for the marriage of [daughter] Philadelphia Franklin to William Smith in Amherst County, with [son] Samuel Franklin as surety. [Sweeny, Marriage Bonds and Other Marriage Records of Amherst County, Virginia 1763 -1800, p. 70]
10 Apr 1792: Henry signed his will . . .
Will of Henry Franklin
[Will Book 3, p. 233, copy and transcription provided by Virginia Paddock]
I, Henry Franklin of Amherst County, being weak in body [but] of sound mind and memory, do make and ordain this my last will and testament and first I give my soul to God and my body I recommend to the earth to be buried at the discretion of my Executors hereafter to be named, and as touching my worldly estate I give devise and dispose of the same in the manner and form following. I give to my son-in-law Joseph Ballinger all the commodities I lent him some time ago, to wit, one dun colored mare with her increase, some cows, feather bed that he has now in possession. I give to my son John Franklin one dun horse, one cow and calf & her increase with one feather bed, to which things he has now in his possession. I give to my daughter Elizabeth Ballinger one dun horse and saddle and cow and calf with her increase & one feather bed, to which things she has now in possession. I give to my son Henry Franklin one brown coloured horse, one cow and calf & their increase and one feather bed, to which things he has in his possession. I give to my son James Franklin one feather bed and furniture, which things he has not in his possession. I give to my daughter Peggy Harrison one dun coloured mare and saddle and feather bed and one cow and calf and their increase, which things she has in her possession. I give to my daughter Phebe Franklin one feather bed and furniture, one woman's riding saddle & one cow and calf and their increase, which things she has in her possession. I give to my son Joel Franklin one black horse colt, one feather bed and furniture and one cow and calf which he has in possession. I give to my son Samuel Franklin my tract of land whereon I now live to be freely possessed and enjoyed by him at the decease of his mother. I give to my daughter Philadelphia Smith one dun coloured mare colt likewise what other things I have heretofore given her which she has in her possession. All the remainder of my estate after paying my just debts I give to my beloved wife Margaret Franklin during her natural life and at her decease it is my will and desire that the said estate so remaining be equally divided between my son Samuel Franklin and my daughter Judith Franklin. And lastly I constitute and appoint my two sons, viz Joel Franklin and Samuel Franklin, Executors to this my last will and testament, and do hereby disannul every other wills and legacies & Executors, ratifying and confirming this and no other to be my last will and testament. Given under my hand and seal this tenth day of April one thousand seven hundred and ninety-two.
Henry Franklin (Seal)
Signed, sealed and pronounced In the presence of
Andrew (x) Harrison
Wife Margaret was obviously still alive in 1792 when named in the above will, although one anonymous sources claims her death date was 30 Apr 1788. Witness Aaron Franklin was Henry's grandson and witness Joel was Henry's son.
17 Sep 1792: The will was proved by Philip Smith and Aaron Franklin. Executors Joel and Samuel Franklin posted a bond of £500, with William Ware as security.
October 1792: The estate inventory was filed by Samuel Franklin, the appraisers being Richard Oglesby, John Sale, John Brockman, and Leonard Henley. [Davis, Abstracts of Amherst County, Virginia Wills, p. 11, from Book 2, p. 252] Is "Henley" actually "Hensley"?
Children of Henry and Margaret Hensley Franklin: Except for Sarah Franklin Ballenger, who had died earlier, the children listed were all named in Henry's will.
Sarah Hensley Franklin (c. 1737 – 8 Jan 1777; m. Joseph Ballenger 1753)
John Franklin (25 Dec 1740/1748 - 3 Apr 1823; m. Margaret Pamela Dawson)
Elizabeth "Dolly" Franklin (m. Richard Ballenger)
Henry Franklin ( - 1782; m. Mary Ann Higginbotham)
James Franklin ( - Aug 1813; m. Nancy Ann Crews 15 Dec 1796)
Margaret "Peggy" Hensley Franklin (c. 1757 - 1829; m. Reuben Harrison 9 Oct 1770)
Phoebe Franklin ( – 1842; m. Jeremiah Franklin)
Husband Jeremiah was the son of Barnard Franklin.
17 Feb 1798: Jeremiah was surety for the marriage of [daughter] Lucinda Franklin and William Clarkson. [Jim Smoot]
Phoebe signed her will in Amherst County. Executor: Henry Franklin. Witnesses John Pryor, Julius Simpson, and Thomas Lain. In it she mentioned land owned in VA, NC, and AL. It was proved 20 Jun 1842. [Davis, Abstracts of Amherst County, Virginia Wills, p. 14, from Book 11, p. 66-67]
Joel Franklin (23 Sep 1757 – Oct 1807; m. Susannah Lewis 7 Jan 1794)
Samuel Franklin (29 Dec 1762 – May 1836; m. Rachel Powell 1 Jan 1794)
Philadelphia Franklin (m. William Smith 18 Nov 1784)
15 Mar 1784: William Smith of Amherst County sold 120 acres on the south side of Otter Creek in Amherst County to George Davis for £50. The parcel adjoined Robert Johnson. Witnesses: Samuel Higginbotham, Jeremiah Taylor, Ballinger Wade, and Richard Powell. ["Genealogy by Anne", from Davis, Abstracts of Amherst County, Virginia Deeds, p. 209, original on p. 489. More deeds for William Smith can be found at http://genealogy-by-anne.com/gen/history/smith-history/william-smith-amherst-deeds.html. NEW 27 Apr 2013
Philadelphia married William with the consent of father Henry Franklin. The surety was [brother] Samuel Franklin and the ceremony was performed by Rev. Joseph Ballenger, who was her brother-in-law. [Gertrude Williams; Jim Smoot, from Order Book 1784-1787, p. 60]
Judith Franklin ( – 1811)
Judith's will was written on 12 May [or Mar] 1810 and probated Nov 1811. James Haines has claimed a death date of 18 Nov 1811.
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Nancy Denty Breidenthal