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December 31, 2018 / Joanne Yeck

Buckingham Notables: The Allens of Hunts Creek, Part II

Jesse Allen Will. Courtesy Library of Virginia.

The Fall 2018 Issue of Central Virginia Heritage includes three Allen family wills transcribed by Jean L. Cooper. These wills inspired “The Allens of Hunts Creek.”

Need to catch up? Click here: Buckingham Notables: The Allens of Hunts Creek, Part I


Some of William and Mary (Hunt) Allen’s children remained in Goochland and Cumberland counties; others moved west with their parents. One son, named John, married Betheniah Thomas (a. k. a. Nevil), c. 1748. Their son, Jesse Allen, is the author of the first transcribed will published in Central Virginia Heritage (Fall 2018). Written on July 27, 1780 and entered into court on June 3, 1782, his will may have been recorded in Amherst and Albemarle counties, as well as Buckingham.

Jesse Allen was in his mid-thirties when he died, unmarried and childless. He had a brother, Samuel Allen, who married Hannah Jopling, providing an important clue to Jesse Allen’s connection to the Joplings named in his will.

Legatee Jesse Jopling, son of Alsey Jopling, received three Negro slaves: Lucy, Sarah and Tillis, along with their increase. Jesse Jopling also received one feather bed and furniture, one mare and colt, and all of Jesse Allen’s stock of cattle and sheep. At the time of Allen’s death, Jesse Jopling was still a minor. If he died before his twenty-first birthday, this legacy would go to the children of Jesse Allen’s brother, Samuel.

Jesse Jopling does not appear in Rev. Wicker’s genealogy of the Allen family. It did not take long, however, to discover that he was kin to Jesse Allen. A Jopling genealogy revealed that Jesse Jopling was the son of Ralph and Alsey (Allen) Jopling, the daughter of John and Betheniah Allen. Jesse Jopling was a nephew and a namesake. Jesse Allen had a sister named Alsey who was unknown to Rev. Wicker!

Other members of the Jopling family witnessed the will: Thomas Jopling, Jr. (likely Hannah’s brother), Betheniah Hilton, and Thomas T. Jopling, Sr. (probably Hannah Allen’s father, who was elderly and signed with his mark).

Coming next: Buckingham Notables: The Allens of Hunts Creek, Part III


Leave a Comment
  1. Joanne Yeck / Jan 1 2019 12:07 pm

    Many thanks for your comment. The children of Lucy Thomas and James Nevil can be confusing. I, for one, do not have them straight in my mind. I do know that the Nevil and Thomas families interacted with each other. Betheniah/Bethenia apparently used the name Thomas most of the time, if not exclusively. Happy New Year ~

  2. Bill Davidson / Jan 1 2019 9:55 am

    Betheniah/Bethenia Thomas was supposedly a daughter of Lucy Thomas and James Nevil, born prior to the eventual marriage of Lucy and James. Lucy Thomas also married my ancestor Abraham Childers “III” (whose earlier wife was my ancestor Elizabeth Cannon). Lucy Thomas apparently had a final child (a James Thomas) with yet a third man.

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