THE RICE and ELIZABETH PRICE FAMILY
By Dan Speer
THE PRICE FAMILIES
Isaac Price was born March 6, 1747 and was the son of John Price (1715-1802) and Mary White who are buried at Steeles Creek Presbyterian in Mecklenburg County NC. John Price was the son of Rice and Elizabeth Price. Rice Price was born about. 1690 in Wales and died in 1753 in Lunenburg County, Va. Isaacs brothers included John Jr., Reese, William, Jonathan and Thomas.
Isaac Price settled on the east bank of the Catawba River, at the junction of what are now Gaston and Mecklenburg Counties in North Carolina, and York County South Carolina. This was also known as the Shopton neighborhood not far from the Steele Creek Presbyterian Church. Letters wrote by the Price/Kerr/Henry families from Tennessee to Price Family members in Mecklenburg list the address as Whitehall. (These letters are in the Price Family Papers found University of North Carolina Library) Today, this area is known as Steele Creek. Isaac Prices house was burned down to make way for a lake created by the construction of a power dam.
Isaac Price was a blacksmith and served as an armorer (made swords) under General Sumter during the Revolutionary War and it is assumed Isaac and his heirs were granted land in Tennessee for this service. In 1784 Isaac and his heirs received warrant No. 626 from the State of North Carolina for 1,000 acres along the Elk River including the mouth of the Richland Creek in what was at that time called Maury County. In 1809 Giles County was formed. Isaac Price also received a land grant for 400 acres in Henderson County, dated September 19, 1818 and recorded with State of Tennessee April 21, 1821.
Isaac married Esther Bradley in 1746 and was the daughter of James Bradley and Elizabeth Phlegm. They had the following children
Rebecca Price b, January 28, 1772 m Rev.Joseph Price Howe (son of John and Jane Dunlap) moved to Montgomery County Ky. Buried Springfield Presbyterian.
Josiah Price b. December 23, 1773 m. a Simpson in March of 1812 and moved to Marengo Co. Al.
William Price b. may 24, 1776 m. Nancy Baldridge came to Giles County in 1808 then moved to Lauderdale County Al.
James Price b. June 25, 1778 m. Mary Dunlap Howe (daughter of Joseph and Isabella Howe). James came to Giles County in 1808 died in 1817. James is buried in the Price/Kerr cemetery located on the original land grant. Buried next to James is his son Isaac N, Price born March 1 1807-died May 11 1810. Mary later moved to Montgomery, Texas.
Mary Price b. July 12, 1780 m. Henry Kerr and moved to Giles County in 1815, died July 7, 1817 of Malaria. She is buried in the Price/Kerr cemetery. See Kerr information.
John Price b. May 4, 1783. In James McCallum history of Giles County John and William Price at named as the settlers and founders of the Countys first settlement, Lower Elkton. This may have been James instead of John.
Esther Price b. January 6, 1786 m. Henry Neal and moved to Sumner Co. TN.
Isaac Price Jr. b. August 2. 1788 d. June 22, 1833 m. Nancy (?) and stay on the Family property. Many of the Price Letters are written to him. He made at least one visit to Giles County. Isaac died on June 22. 1833 and he and his wife are buried at Steele Creek.
Martha Price b. May 5, 1791 no information.
Isaac Price died November (?) 1811 at the age of 64 years and nine months. Esther Price died August 11, 1815 at the age of 69 years and three days. Both are buried in Steele Creek Presbyterian Cemetery.
On July 10, 1784 Isaac Price and his heirs received a land warrant, No.626 from the State of North Carolina Western Lands and the State of Tennessee, for 1000 acres in the second district of Maury, on the North Side of the Elk River including the mouth of Richland Creek. The land was surveyed on May 10, 1808 and was registered on June 4. 1815. Maury County was organized in 1807 and this land became part of Giles County, which was organized in 1809. There are several different dates for this land grant, another date for this grant was October 27, 1783 and states " in Green County at the mouth of Richland Creek beginning on the bank of the River then up the said creek including the land on both sides of the Creek for compliment."
The History books on Giles County name two Price brothers as among the early settlers. In 1808 James and William settled on the East side of Richland Creek near the mouth at what was called "Lower Elkton". This was the fist settlement in Giles County. Historian James McCallum states, "John and William Price laid off a town and sold out lots at the mouth of the creek and the place was called Lower Elkton. It became an important shipping point and considerable business was done at it for fifteen or twenty years."
In 1811 a Bill was considered in the Tennessee General Assembly to authorize William Price to lay off a town on his own land, by the name of Elkville, at the junction of the Elk River and Richland Creek. (Rivers Manuscript) Also, in 1811 Isaac Price dies and this apparently had a major impact upon the plans to build the "trading town" town of Elkville. In 1812 a petition was presented to General Assembly of Tennessee, " 31-1-1812 Petition of citizens of Giles County to change locations of a proposed "trading town." In 1811 an Act was passed granting the establishment of a town on the lands of WILLIAM PRICE, near the confluence of Richland Creek and Elk River. Due to the sudden death of the father of the petitioner (William Price), who died intestate, the plan cannot be carried out; only two or three of the nine legal heirs live in Tennessee. In addition, the original site was marshy and sometimes under water; therefore, the petitioners ask that a town may established on land of Guston Kearney and John Childress on Elk River where the Main Post Road from Pulaski to Huntsville crosses Elk River at Manefees Ford, about four miles above Richland Creek; plats are included. Subscriber were: 16 Sep 1812 (12 pages)." (Tennessee Genealogy Magazine Vol. 31 No 1, also House Journal p. 83) This change in location was called Elkton, the name Elkville was apparently never adopted and the Price settlement was officially known as Lower Elkton. As Giles County population increased and new roads where constructed the necessity of river travel declined and so did the importance of Lower Elkton.
In 1814 William Price was granted a tavern-keeper license for one year and more importantly, in November of 1814 additional members of the Price and related families came to Giles County. Prior to this date, it is certain that James, William and maybe John Price where in Giles County. On December 22, 1809 William Price witnessed a deed from John Easley to John Baldridge for land adjoining Isaac Prices property. John Baldridge is Williams brother-in-law, so from this it is assumed that the Baldridge family made the early trip to Giles County.
The 1814 trip from Mecklenburg Co. NC and York Co. SC took 37 days and the families arrived in January of 1815. In a letter dated January 8, 1815 James and Mary D. Price described the trip and general conditions of the area. Families making this trip were: Mary D. Price and family (James Price family), Henry Kerr and wife Mary Price Kerr and family, and William Howe and possibility Henry Neal and family and the McKenzie family. Also, in this letter, written by James and Mary D. Price, notes that Henry Kerr "got kick in his private parts by his filly and injured him very much". The letter goes on " we are Hutted within fifty yards of one another & continues very Neighborly Billy about a mile off". (Brother William Price) The major topic of the letter centers around money problems, " I never stood in need of money half as bad in my life not able to buy corn or lard to do me".
James McCallum describes and interesting family story in his book " A Brief Sketch of the Settlement and Early History of Giles County Tennessee" on the Great Fight. "In the Fall of 1816, at a muster at William Phillips the great fight between the Prices and McKinneys came off. Janes Price and James McKenney were the principals. Joab Campbell was the friend of the Prices, and Phelps and Jno. Smith of the McKinneys. There was no special quarrel between the principals. The Prices were regarded as "champions" in their neighborhood and the McKinneys in theirs. One of the principals asked the other which of his family was regarded as the best man He replied that he thought he was. The other told him to prepare himself for a fight. They engaged. They were both champions in size, physical development, game, and endurance. It was a most desperate fight and continued long. Their friends became engaged and at one time a half dozen fights were going on. The crowd became excited and almost half of them stripped to fight, without having any particular person in view to fight, or anything in particular to fight about. To one who never witnessed such a scene the effect is indescribable. The writer was then a boy. It was the first fight he ever saw and was the most gigantic on he has ever seen, Price and his friends were victorious."
James Price dies in 1817, leaving Mary Dunlap Howe Price to raise the family. Mary wrote several letters to Isaac Price Jr. requesting settlement of certain money issues and communicated her financial difficulties. Mary was sued in 1825 for a bad debt of about $ 24.00. There is speculation that Ulysses McKenzie is living in the household with Mary D. during this time period. Mary D. Price leaves for Texas in 18__ and dies there in 18__
William and Nancy Baldridge move to Lauderdale County Alabama in 18--.
Henry and Esther Price Neal move to Sumner County. (Francis B. Kerr married a Neal, this may have been one of their daughters).
Mary Price Kerr dies in 1817. Mary her daughter Esther and brother James are buried on the family property in a small graveyard located between the two houses built on high ground overlooking the Elk River. Henry Kerr was also buried here in 1864. James Price head stone reads "Sacred to the memory of James PriceWho was born in North Carolina and departed this life June 6, 1817. Also on this head stone "Sacred to the memory of Isaac N. Price who was born March 1, 1807 and departed this life May 11, 1810. There appear to be other unmarked graves at this site.
GREATLY APPRECIATE THE PRICE FAMILY GENEALOGY
PROVIDED BY DAN SPEER ~ 3-GREAT-GRANDSON OF HENRY E. & MARY PRICE KERR
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