Dabney Family of Early Virginia
Cornelius Dabney (b 1630) and his descendants
First Name:  Last Name: 
[Advanced Search]  [Surnames]

Richard Dabney, Jr.

Male 1775 - 1804/05  (29 years)


Personal Information    |    Notes    |    Sources    |    All    |    PDF

  • Name Richard Dabney, Jr. 
    Suffix Jr. 
    Born 16 Dec 1775  King William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Gender Male 
    Died 1804/05  King William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  [2, 3
    Person ID I21  Dabneys of Virginia
    Last Modified 14 Jan 2017 

    Father Richard Dabney,   b. 1750/51, King William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 24 May 1800, King William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 49 years) 
    Mother Diana Gwathmey,   b. 31 Oct 1755, King and Queen County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 14 Aug 1824, King William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 68 years) 
    Married 18 May 1774  [4
    Family ID F16  Group Sheet

    Family Frances Dabney,   b. 26 Nov 1778, King William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 23 Jul 1847, King William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 68 years) 
    Married 6 May 1795  King William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Last Modified 20 Sep 2009 
    Family ID F18  Group Sheet

  • Notes 
    • Richard Dabney Jr. was born December 16, 1775, the eldest son of Richard Dabney Sr. and Diana (Gwathmey) Dabney of St. David’s Parish in King William County, Virginia.
      On May 6, 1795, when he was 20, he married Frances Dabney, a daughter of his father’s elder brother, Isaac Dabney, and therefore a first cousin. Frances was born November 26, 1778, and 17 years old when they married. In the same year, he served as a witness for a deed conveying 400 acres to his uncle, William Dabney Sr. Individuals did not have to be 21 or over to serve as legal witnesses.
      Richard and Frances had three or four children: Susan Hill (Frances’s mother’s name), born February 8, 1796; Catherine Gwathmey, born December 30, 1797; Temple, born November 26, 1798/99; and possibly Richard, not mentioned in his father’s account book, which provided all of the other names and dates, but listed in W. H. Dabney’s history of the Dabney family.
      On March 20, 1797, soon after Richard’s 21st birthday, his father gave him 112 acres in the eastern part of his plantation. For some reason, the deed was not recorded promptly. and the property was included in Richard Sr.’s land in the land tax lists until 1816, long after Richard Sr.’s death in 1800 and Richard Jr.’s death in 1804/05. In 1801, the assessment of Richard Sr.’s estate was reduced by 137 acres due to the gift to Richard and another for 25 acres to Owen, his next oldest son, and remained nearly the same for Diana’s support until her death in 1824. Although Owen’s 25 acres were assessed in the land tax list from 1800 to 1804 when he got into financial difficulty, Richard’s 112 acres were not llsted after 1800 and may have been leased or sold and included in other farmers’ assessments. The deed was finally recorded in February, 1816, perhaps to clarify and substantiate later owners’ chain of title to the property.
      Richard was listed in the personal property tax list 1797-98, but in neither year was he taxed as a tithable male, although he was past 21, his slaves and horses were taxed, and most other males paid the tithable tax. From then until his death in 1804/05, he was not listed, although his slaves and horses may have been included with those of his deceased father’s estate. In contrast, his next younger brother, Owen was listed every year except one from 1797 to 1806, when he was in financial difficulties and disappeared from the county records, except for witnessing a deed in 1810. The foregoing together with Richard’s early death at 29 suggest that he had a chronic health problem serious enough to excuse him from taxation.
      During 1802-1804, Richard was drawn into the business problems of his brother Owen and cousin William Dabney Jr., who operated an unsuccessful retail store from 1798 to 1802. The failure of the business left them with considerable debt which they were hard pressed to pay. On September 30, 1802, Owen and William gave Richard a mortgage on Dublin Mill and the 25 acres given to Owen by his father plus a jenny (female donkey) of pedigreed parentage to secure a loan. The loan was for £2,000, which seems large in relation to the likely value of the property. In February, 1803, William gave Richard a deed of trust for certain assets (page with detailed list missing from county deed records) which Richard could sell if necessary to protect himself from losses from his guarantees of William’s debts. In June, 1803, Richard felt compelled to give a deed of trust to the estate of his uncle Owen Dabney of Hanover County, putting up his slaves and horses to guarantee and postpone payment of £299 owed by Owen and William to the estate of Owen Dabney until January, 1804.
      In December, 1803, despite his apparent health problems, Richard leased 106 acres for the next four years from his sister, Hannah Temple Dabney, the widow of William Dabney Jr. The land was her one-third dower share of her husband’s estate. The land was arable and rated more than twice as valuable per acre as Richard’s own land by the county assessor. Perhaps Richard aimed to increase his farm production to recoup some of his financial losses from Owen and William’s debt problems. Perhaps, too, his sister may have been concerned to help him recover from his losses due to his entanglement in her husband’s failed store.
      In September, 1804, when Owen and William failed to pay their debt to their uncle Owen’s estate, the trustee, George William Smith, advertised a public auction in September, 1804, of Richard’s slaves (probably his most valuable property), a brood mare by Lamplighter (a renowned race horse), two small 3 year old colts by Americanus (another well known sire), a noted stud horse called Hanover, a wagon and gear and three horses, an excellent chair horse about nine years old, and one bay mare colt by Americanus. This list indicates Richard’s commitment to quality horse raising and the magnitude of his losses due to his brother’s and cousin’s business failure. Richard’s evident interest in horses may have influenced his brother Henry’s special interest in raising horses.
      In late 1804 or early 1805, Richard died, aged 29. His early death may have resulted from his chronic health problems, perhaps aggravated by his financial difficulties. His estate continued to be listed in the personal property tax list through 1807, probably for continued support of his widow, Frances (Dabney) Dabney and their children. She remarried in 1813 to Dr. John Segar, with whom she had five children. (See biography of Frances Dabney, daughter of Isaac Dabney.) [1, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14]

  • Sources 
    1. [S11]

    2. [S10]

    3. [S12] p. 117. In February, 1804, Owen and Richard Dabney conveyed the Dublin tract to their mother, Diana Dabney, indicating that Richard was living early in 1804..

    4. [S47]

    5. [S12] p. 55..

    6. [S38] p. 162..

    7. [S1119]

    8. [S39] p. 159..

    9. [S39] p. 163..

    10. [S39] p. 210..

    11. [S39] p. 327..

    12. [S1118]

    13. [S127]

    14. [S39] p. 210, 327..