Sun 10-24-99 Clayton Family Moves South

last modifed on Thu 07-16-98

The Clayton Family Moves South

Although no extant records have been found demonstrating the emigration of the Delaware Clayton family to North Carolina, the circumstantial evidence is convincing. In the first half of the 18th century there were two James Claytons, father and son, in Kent Co., Del. Both were thought to have left Delaware. The junior of the two was a blacksmith. Soon after the respective departures of these two men, two corresponding James Claytons, father and son, appeared in Hyde County, N.C. The junior of the two was a blacksmith. Attempts to locate additional evidence of these moves is on-going.

Indirect evidence appears in the coindence of names of some of the Hyde County people with those of Delaware. The most notable of these is the name Stuckberry

Several other names also appear in both locations. Of particular interest are Brooks and Morris.


There is a record of a James Clayton in Edgecombe Co. N.C. as early as 1735. The first reliable records of our ancestor occur in 1744 in the Currituck tax list and in the 1745 assignment of headrights from William Brooks. The same year a portion of Currituck County, namely the Lake Matamuskeet area, became part of Hyde County.

In 1747 James Clayton made his first application for a grant on Lake Matamuskeet and over the next 15 years he received patents of land along the lake totaling some 3000 acres. He died ca 1761 leaving very little in the way of personal effects. Before he died he had sold a good part of the land he had acquired. In various deeds he is described as carpenter, giner, joiner. He sold several tracts of land to James Clayton, Jr., blacksmith in 1759 and 1760. The original James Clayton appears often in Hyde County court minutes: recording deeds, serving as juror, and once as commissioner of the road on the lake:

Land Dealings of James Clayton of Hyde Co NC

Sept 29, 1756 3 grants issued for 640, 640 and 400: 640 on sw bay on lake running to the point of Harron Bay. 640 ne side of lake joining John Swindal. 400 on lake beg Sam Sulbury's corner tree. Survey by James Ellison with Robert Palmer, surveyor genl.

1755/62 500 acres around Hearn Bay. On s side of lake on Hearn Bay, beginning on the lake side at James Clayton's west Corner running with his line sw and around.

April 23, 1762 Grant of 100 acres issued nw side of the lake beg on lake side of a tract called the Sycamore Tract running north to John Tuchbury's land, then with his line to the lake and along the lake to beg.

April 2, 1767 200 acres on n side of Matamuskeet beg lake side of James Clayton's easternmost corner of his westernmost survey running with his line n to Col Palmer's line, then with his line, etc. (Plat suggests this fills in the gap between Clayton's and Palmer's property.)

Oct 26, 1767 200 acres issued at east end of lake beginning at s end of an island at Harris's cove, running e to Gibb's line, then with Gibb's line to the lake and along the lake to beginning. (Plat shows a wide lake frontage.)

(This makes a total of 3300 acres of land on all four sides of the lake.)

1769 6 May 300 acres n side adj Clayton, Palmer, Porter, the lake and Tuckberry's old field.
1774 Hyde deed book A p 538 the indenture between James C in Craven County and Rich Blackledge, John Jones, Edward Spencer and Christopher Neale for 10 lb n side of lake beg easternmost corner of James Clayton deceased westernmost tract running up the lakeside to Swindell's corner and Cartwright line. wit Robert and John, Jr. Jennet. ----------------------------
Sales of land by James Clayton: (Starting with Grantor index of conveyances in Hyde) Book page
1 to John Morris July 18, 1752 100a N A 411
2 to James Davisson Oct 28, 1752 150a N A 403
3 to Rich Wm Silvester Apr 28, 1753 200a W A 432
4 to Morris Jones Mar 22, 1755 200a N A 523
5 to John Jennett Jan 8, 1756 300a A 495
(In 1719 John Jennett had property adj to the family Mary Clayton,
Wm Hall, Henry Clayton tract on s side of Albemarle Sound.)
6 to John Stokesbery Feb 14, 1756 100a A 528
7 to James Ellison Feb 14, 1756 320a NE A 511
8 to Henry Gibbs, Jr. Feb 14, 1756 100a N A 521
9 to Hugh Henry Feb 25, 1756 100a NE A 525
10 Daniel Griffith Aug 23, 1756 150a N A 554 of North Hampton Co on Eastward shore of Va, planter and James Clayton, ginor of Hyde Co. and in the govt aforesaid, cons. 20 lbs of Va. money gives 150 acres n side of lake adj John Morris, between John Morris and John Stuckberry and Henry Gibbs. wit: Samuel Weston, Thomas Radwell, Stephen X Harris
11 Joseph Weston Aug 26, 1756 A 549
12 John Stokesbury June 2, 1756 100a N A 592 Deed says John Stuckbury for 15 lb. 100 acres n side of Arrowmuskeet Lake adj where Stuckberry now lives and running with the lake 100 poles to Henry Gibbs corner.
13 James Davisson Apr 12, 1758 300a NE A 620 25 lb for 300 acres ne part of Arromuskeet Lake beg near head of the willows.
14 James Clayton, Jr. Mar 18, 1759 110a NE A 651 Sr., carpenter to Jr. blacksmith, for 16 lb n side of Arromuskeet Lake beg w side of John Morris' land running westerly with the lake 110 poles to gum corner then n to a cyprus then e, then s to first station 110 acres. wit. John Spencer, Samuel Selby ???a E
15 Jr. Mar 19, 1759 A 654 same people: 25 lb ?? acres e end of lake beg at ? end of Capt. James Ellerson's land running with his line n to Henry Gibbs, Sr., then by Gibbs line to ... and back to beginning./ wit. John Spencer and Samuel Selby
16 Jr. Sep 16, 1760 110a N A 726
17 Jr. Sep 16, 1760 A 724
18 Jr. Sep 17, 1760 640a S A 728

19 Andrew Hopkins Oct. 8, 1760 110a N A 730

20 James Hall Oct. 8, 1760 A 732

21 William Porter Oct 9, 1760 100a NE
James Clayton, Sr. died ca 1760. Many other grants were made by James Clayton, Jr.
N.C.Hist.Rev. Vol 47 (1970) p 52 footnote gives Hyde County Deed Book B, 571 (1775) in which James Clayton, Craven County, blacksmith, transferred to John Jones, of the same county, 80 acres on the N side of Aromuskeet Lake. For additional land deals of John Jones in Hyde County see pages 607,782,792,800, 804,891. This suggests that the 1774 deed to Blackledge, Jones, Spencer, and Neale was his first venture into Hyde, Jones had at least two deals with Clayton and very likely took his place as a primary owner of the lakeshore. -------------------------------------
In June of 1762 James Clayton moved for an order to sell the goods and chattels of James Clayton, decd. In 1762 James Clayton, blacksmith disposed of 200 acres left from the 1756 grants, claiming it as "lawful heir of my father James Clayton, decd." So far as is known, this James Clayton, blacksmith, and his children were the only descendants of the original James Clayton, the carpenter of Hyde County.

Three people who were later closely associated with James, Jr. in Craven County appear in the Hyde County records:

Francis Delamar was an executor in the will of John Martin in 1737, as was also John Carruthers, Martin's brother-in-law. Wm and Elizabeth Carruthers were witnesses. Years later when James Clayton, Jr. moved to Craven County, he acquired one tract of land from Thomas Delamar and two others from John Carruthers. (In the will Martin mentions his "lower plantation at mouth of Broad Creek", which presumably may be very near the area where James Clayton, Jr. settled in Craven (now Pamlico) County.)

(In 1767 John Carruthers purchased two tracts from John Moore on the Lower Broad and almost immediately sold them to James Clayton for the same price. It thus appears he was acting as agent for one or both. Was this John Moore part of the family of Ann Moore, who had married William Carraway? one tract was on the N side of Lower Broad, and the other on the south side of the head of Lower Broad, said to be John Moore's 1730 patent.)

II. James Clayton, the Son of James Clayton of Hyde Co.

This man, you may recall, was born in Kent County, Delaware, and appeared in his youth to be closely associated with his mother's family, the Newells. He had three maternal uncles, named John, Thomas, and William, after whom three of his sons may have been named. It seems likely that all four of his sons were also born in Delaware, although his father had probably moved to Hyde County before any of his grandchildren were born.

James Clayton, blacksmith, continued to live in Hyde County until ca 1769. In 1762 a deed from Thomas and John Spencer to James Clayton was acknowedged in court and registered. (This John Spencer may have been the son of William Spencer.) During this period James Clayton sold three tracts of land. In July 1769 he appeared on a petit jury, but he apparently moved to Craven County that year. He continued to sell property in Hyde County until 1782, but the deeds identify him as James Clayton of Craven County.

In 1767 James Clayton had acquired property in Craven County on the Lower Broad Creek: two tracts from John Carruthers and one from Thomas Delamar:

1767 John Carruthers, planter, to James Clayton, Blacksmith for 16 lbs. 100 acres ns of Neuse and ns of Lower Broad Cr. beginning at Whitehouse Gut. Witnesses: Thomas Delamar and Isaac Simmons. (Carruthers had recently purchased this property from John Moore, Elder.)

1767 John Carruthers to James Clayton for 11 lbs land ns of Neuse, s side of head of Lower Broad Cr. beginning at mouth of Poplar Branch, etc. to corner of a patent granted to John Moore 11 April 1745, to Isaac Simmons line, etc.
witnesses: Thomas Delamar and Isaac Simmons
(One book has this deed published as conveyed to Joseph Carruthers, but I believe that is in error.)

James Clayton appears on a tax list in Craven County in 1769 with five slaves.

James appears to be a widower in Craven Co. because within a couple of years he had apparently remarried--to Mary Edwards, a widow with at least four children. Her husband, Solomon Edwards, had apparently died in 1766.

In March of 1771 James appeared in court, represented by Mr. Sitgreaves, to qualify as administrator of the estate of Acenah Edwards, decd. (Significantly Capt. Thomas Sitgeaves, paid a unit of soldiers who had belonged to the Prison Guard on Jan 8, 1771. The unit included the name James Clayton, probably the son of the James whom Sitgreaves had represented in this court case. Was this in connection with the Regulators incident?) James Clayton entered into bond with James Carraway and Christopher Dawson and qualified.

In 1774 James Clayton acquired more property in the Lower Broad Creek area from Joseph Brooks. (See Craven County deed books 14, 15 and 21.) The Brooks tract appears to be his last land acquisition except for a patent for 500 acres on the sound granted in 1782.

In 1776 James Clayton, Sr., blacksmith for love and affection conveyed to his son William Clayton the two parcels on the Lower Broad which he had acquired in 1767 including the 100 acres on the north side of the creek "where James Clayton, Sr. now lives".
Witnesses were John Carruthers and Abel McBay.

His will indicates that his home plantation was adj. to William Clayton, Joseph Carraway and Joseph Good. His exors were "my son William Clayton and my friends William Carraway Esqr and Joseph Good" (Presumably this is the William Carraway whose will was also made in 1783.)

In December of 1783 the will of James Clayton, planter, was proved by Francis Delamar in Craven County court (it was written the 21st day of August). In it he names wife Mary and four sons:
John, born 1745 died in Hyde Co.;
William, born 1750, married Rhoda Ann;
James, born 1753, thought to have died in the Revolution;
Thomas, born 1755, married Sarah Delamar, dau of Francis 1784.
(The birthdates of the four sons were provided by cousin Margaret Clayton Russell.)

James left his children land in Hyde and Craven Counties. In addition to his sons he named three daughters:
Tomson (or Tonnieson?), who was contemporary with his sons. She married Demson Delamar, and they are said to have moved to GA.

The other two daughters were children of Mary Edwards. They were contemporary with their father's grandchildren. (Their mother survived James and wrote her will in 1795):
Elizabeth married Jesse Lester. He was the executor of Elizabeth's mother, Mary Clayton in 1795, but Elizabeth had died by that time. It is possible that James C Lester was their son; he is mentioned in the will of Thomas Clayton in Pulaski Co. GA in 1820.
Eunice married James Cannon and moved to Ga.

James Clayton's son John, apparently the oldest, seems to have remained in Hyde County. He and his brothers exchanged property so that he owned all the Hyde County property and they owned all the Craven County property. John had two sons, Thomas and Elliot.

Elliot Clayton joined the Core Sound Friends Meeting on 8m 27d, 1814 but was dismissed three years later for "marrying out of unity". (There are Claytons in Hyde County today, but they trace their ancestry from the Claytons of Perquimans Co, a branch of the New Jersey family.)

There was a Quaker meeting house on or near the shore of Lake Matamuskeet and probably on land which had been owned by Elliot's grandfather, James Clayton. The property belonged to John Moore of Jones Co. when he died ca 1798 and willed it to three Quakers, Ezekiel Harris, James Hall and Lemuel Cartwright. James Hall was almost surely a cousin of James Clayton and had come down with him from Kent Co. DE ca 1760 and was conveyed property by James Clayton on the lake. In 1764 Ezekiel Cartwright was conveyed similar property, and in 1772 Ezekiel Harris.

Son William appears to have remained in Craven County. (This is probably the William Clayton who is a recorded participant in the battle of Camden as a part of the Craven County militia.) Craven County deeds reveal that he and his wife Rhoda Ann had three sons: James, Dempsey, and William.

Son James was said to be "absant" and his share was conditioned upon his return, and otherwise was to go to his three brothers. (Mrs. Margaret Clayton Russell, who has published a history of the Clayton family stated that son James was in the American navy during the Revolution, captured by the British and last heard of in Pensacola. She has this from family records and/or traditions.)

Son Thomas, presumably, the youngest, born in 1755, was the ancestor of Margaret Clayton Russell. Thomas married Sarah Delamar, daughter of Francis Delamar. In a deed from his brother William in 1796 he is listed as a ship carpenter. (William is listed as a blacksmith.) Thomas moved to Hancock County, Ga. in 1804, and his descendant, Margaret Russell, has considerable detail on his family history from that time. Thomas's grandson was the famous General Henry Delamar Clayton of the Confederate forces in Alabama.

Descendants of William Clayton

Two of William Clayton's sons, James and Dempsey, were Methodist ministers, and they both moved to Georgia early in the 19th Century. William Clayton's third son, William, appears to have remained in Craven County.

William Clayton married Susannah Leverman in 1792.
Bondsman: John Clayton; T. Mckey, Witness. (This may or may not be out William Clayton.)

James was born in 1776. In early years a blacksmith, he became a Methodist minister, (and a doctor of some sort), moved to GA, then AL, and became the ancestor of the present writer.) ; in 1792 he married Sarah Carraway.

James Clayton of Craven Co. NC, Person Co. NC, Butts and Carroll Counties, GA, and Tallapoosa and Chambers Counties in AL died in the last of these locations some time after 1860.

In 1805 in Craven County James Clayton signed a bond for the marriage of Patsy DELAMAR to Spencer PITTMAN.

In 1806 he signed the bond for marriage of Christopher Delamar to Ann York.

In 1811 Polly Delamar, James Clayton's daughter, married Churchill Delamar, brother of Christopher. Both were sons of Francis Delamar IV.

Dempsey Clayton was admitted to the Virginia Conference of the Methodist Church in 1805 and assigned to the Caswell Circuit in the Salisbury District. (He apparently 'located' within a year because he does not appear among the appointments for 1806 or thereafter.) He later appeared with his brother, James and his nephew Churchill Delamar, on a list of trustees to receive a piece of property in Person Co. for a meeting house for Methodists. Later still he moved to Newton Co. GA and then to Carroll Co. GA.

William's 3rd son, William, Jr., a blacksmith, married Susanna Hammontree in 1798. Most likely he remained in Craven Co. and was the ancestor of the present generation living there.

As stated above William Jr's two brothers and his nephew Churchill Delamar moved to GA. But before they did they spent some time in Person County, probably largely for the purpose of organizing what became the Tirzah Methodist Church in the southeast corner of the county, a few miles in fact from Durham.

In 1816 Clayton James, acting as trustee of a Methodist congregation in Person Co., together with Dempsey Clayton and Churchwell Delamar and several Moores received a conveyance from Samuel Dickens, a member of the Moore family who owned most of the Mt. Tirzah neighbor in SE Person Co. They were deeded "five acres on a branch of Hillsboro Rd to erect a house of worship for Methodist Episcopal Church" A few years later the house of worship burned and a new deed was issued for property nearby.

The 1820 census reveals Dempsey Clayton and Churchill Delamar in Person County. James appears to be absent and it appears that during that year he probably moved to Hancock County GA., part of which later became Butts Co.

III. The Georgia Claytons

As stated above the only Claytons remaining in N.C. long after the beginning of the 19th century were the descendants of John Clayton in Hyde County and of William Clayton by his third son, William, in Craven County. James III is presumed to have been lost in the Revolution. The younger son, Thomas moved to Hancock County, Ga about 1804. Some years later he was followed by his two nephews, James and Dempsey, who were both apparently local preachers in the Methodist Church. We also have records of several Delamars and Carruthers families moving to Georgia, very likely related to the Claytons and also Eunice Cannon, daughter of James Clayton, the blacksmith of Craven County.

Thomas Clayton, grandson of the original James, settled first in Hancock County Ga. By 1812 the tax list there showed the following: Thomas Clayton, Sr. Thomas Clayton, Jr. James Clayton (This James was probably the son of Thomas, Sr.) Eunice Cannon (Thomas Clayton's sister) By 1820 there were three James Claytons in Hancock County. In addition to Thomas's son, it appears that his nephew James, son of William, had moved to the area.

In 1816 Thomas Clayton and most of his family moved south to Pulaski Co. In 1820 he died there. His two older sons, James and Thomas, had remained in Hancock County. From the Bible of his son, James, still preserved by the family of Margaret Russell Clayton of Eufaula, Alabama, we have the birthdates of his children: Miriam Barcliff b 1787; died 1805 in Hancock Co. James b. 1788, moved to Monroe Co 1827 Thomas b 1790, died 1834 in Hancock County, Ga. Nelson b. 1796, lived in Pulaski Co, then Alabama William b. 1799 Delamar b. 1802 Sarah b. 1804 Easter b. 1807.

Margaret Clayton Russell has written a family history that gives details about the lives of all of these people. In this article mention is made of Nelson Clayton and his descendants. Nelson Clayton, son of Thomas, son of James, son of James, married Sarah Leith Carruthers in 1819 in Pulaski County. In 1835 he moved to south Alabama, where his brother, James had already settled.

Nelson Clayton's youngest son, Henry Delamar Clayton, born 1827, became a major general in the Confederate army and later was president of the University of Alabama. He was the great grandfather of Margaret Clayton Russell, from whom much of this family history came. The general's son, Henry D. Clayton, Jr. became a Congressman from Alabama. Meanwhile Thomas' nephews, James and Dempsey, the sons of William, moved westward from Hancock County with the advancing frontier.


Butts County, Georgia was established in 1826 and James, Rev. James as he will be called, was soon there. According to Lois McMichael, writer of the History of Butts County, he was one of four ministers in Butts County in 1827. He was also on the grand jury there in 1827. He purchased 100a of land in the county and served as a founding trustee for the Methodist Episcopal Church in the acquisition of a plot of land.

Churchill Delamar is associated with James Clayton in Butts County--and in the Methodist church there. Churchill Delamar of Craven County, N.C. had married Polly Clayton in 1811. Polly was the daughter of Rev. James. She and Churchill Delamar are both buried in Richmond Co. GA according to cousin Bill Sparrow.

Butts County deed book B on pp 100-103 in 1828 describes a deed of a portion of Lot 256 in the first district of Henry Co., now Butts Co. from Thomas Key and Sarah Key his wife to James Clayton, together with Thomas Cook, Henry Vanvibber, Joseph C. Adkins, and Richard Shepperd, who were trustees for the acquisition of property for a building for a place of worship for the Methodist Episcopal Church. (12 years before James Clayton had served in the same capacity for the acquisition of a Methodist church in Person Co. NC.)

This Thomas and Sarah Key are perhaps the parents of the Joseph Lawrence Key who in 1831 was to marry James Clayton's granddaughter, Elizabeth Delamar.

In 1830 Rev James went to the courthouse and settled upon his ward, James Clayton, Jr. $216 on Jr's 21st birthday. He is referred to in court records as Jr's guardian. (This led to some uncertainty as Jr's relationship with Rev. James for a number of years, until the family of Rev. James Clayton was found listed in a document in an old trunk. I later ran across a letter from Craven Co. written in 1823 in which Elizabeth Delamar mentions just being appointed guardian of her two sons. Apparently it was customary to appoint a parent as guardian when property was inherited by minor children.)

On Jan 13, 1828, at the age of 18 or 19, James, Jr. married Mary McBride, the daughter of John McBride, a member of the Butts County court. Their oldest son, John McBride Clayton, was to marry Lucinda Gahagan. In 1829 Lawrence Gahagan married Elcy Mobley, the daughter of Jethro and Esther Lovejoy Mobley: they became the parents of John M. Clayton's wife.

The 1830 Butts Co. census (presented alphabetically) included males, females and slaves
James Clayton 4 4 1
James Clayton 1 2 1
Churchill Delamar 2 8 2
Larence Gahagan 1 2 3
John McBride 7 6 6
Jethro Mobley 5 1 12

In 1830 Rev James went to the courthouse and settled upon his ward, James Clayton, Jr. $216 on Jr's 21st birthday. He is referred to in court records as Jr's guardian. (This led to some uncertainty as Jr's relationship with Rev. James for a number of years, until the family of Rev. James Clayton was found listed in a document in an old trunk. I later ran across a letter from Craven Co. written in 1823 in which Elizabeth Delamar mentions just being appointed guardian of her two sons. Apparently it was customary to appoint a parent as guardian when property was inherited by minor children.)

In 1831 Rev. J.W(arren?) Clayton officated at the marriage of his granddaughter, Elizabeth Dawson "Betsey" DELAMAR, born 8 March, 1812 in Craven County, North Carolina; she married Joseph Lawrence "Joe" KEY on 1 December, 1831 in Butts County, Georgia; she died 22 March, 1903 in Holly Springs,

Rev. James' brother, Dempsey, settled in Newton County, just across the river from Butts in the 1820's. Later Rev. Dempsey and Rev. James both moved to Carroll Co, a bit further west.

Later Years of Rev. James Clayton
(of N.C., Ga, and Ala.)

The 1840 census finds James Clayton (as well as Dempsey W. Clayton) in Carroll County Ga. In 1830 Dempsey W Clayton had been in Newton County (across the river from James), but in the 1827 Georgia Land Lottery he had drawn lot no. 102 9 in Carroll County. Apparently between 1830 and 1840 James and Dempsey both moved to Carroll County.

The census for James Clayton listed 2 males aged (15-20), who Margaret supposed to be John Elliott Clayton (who was later found to be not John, but Joshua) and William (who died soon after 1840).

In 1792 James Clayton marriedSarah Carraway , daughter of Nathaniel and Mary Carraway. The issue of this union was:
1. Mary (Polly) Clayton (b. 1793) married Churchwell Delamar in 1810.
2. Betsey Clayton (b. 1797 - d. 1831)
3. Fanny Clayton (b. 1800 - d. 1801)
4. Rhoda Ann Clayton (b. 1803 - d. 1803)
5. Dempsey Clayton (b. 1806 - d. 1807)
6. James Clayton (b. 1809) married Mary McBride in 1827.
7. Rhoda Ann (II) Clayton (b. 1812 - d. 1813)

Sarah died in 1816, and the same year James Clayton married Sarah Mixon and had a second family:
8.Harriet Asbury Clayton (1818-1900); buried in Duck River Cemetery, Cullman Co. AL); married William M.Harper (1803- 1865 in Civil War) in 1835 in Butts Co, AL
9. Joshua Elliott CLAYTON (b. 12 February 1820, North Carolina - d. 2 July 1889, Helena, MT) married Naomi B. (b. circa 1830 in Georgia). Sometime in the 1870s or 1880s Joshua Elliott CLAYTON married a Mrs. HAMPTON of Portland, Oregon. His stepson's name was William Huntley HAMPTON.
10. Elijah Mixon Clayton (b. 1822); Methodist minister. JP in Coosa County AL in 1855.
11. William McKendree Clayton (b. 1824 - d. 1841, Carroll Co., GA) (The 1841 Southern Christian Advocate Issue of April 30 announced the death of William Clayton (aged 16), youngest son of Rev. James and Sarah Clayton, a member of the M.E.Church. This was in Carrol Co.)
12. Johanna Bruce "Jo" CLAYTON (b. 1826 - d. 1905, Oakland, California) married William Cogan BUCKELEW (b. 20 Dec 1820 - d. 12 Aug 1869, Clayton Ranch [near Brownsville], Yuba Co., California)

The Clayton extended family was in Carroll Co. GA as late as 1842 when they appeared on the tax list:
Carroll County Georgia Tax Digist 1842
James Clayton 714 10
J. E. Clayton 714 10 (James' son)
Dempsey W.Clayton 713 11 (James' brother)
William M. Harper 714 10 (James' son-in-law)

The Tallapoosa County Ala marriage book shows James Clayton, M.G. solemnizing two weddings in 1844. The same year two Clayton girls were married: Johanna Clayton married William C. Buckelew and Milly A Clayton married Samuel Eley. (Note that Lawrence Gahagan was in this county for the 1840 census.) (The identity of Milly Clayton is presently undetermined.)

Margaret Clayton Russell stated that "Old Cousin James" and his wife Sarah came from Coosa County Ala and spent their last years (beginning in 1855) under the wing of her great great grandfather, Nelson Clayton in Chambers County Ala. "Old Cousin James was a Methodist minister." Two of Rev. James' children, Joshua Elliott Clayton and Johanna Bruce Clayton Buckalew went to California. Rev. Elijah M Clayton (b 1823) was a J.P. in Coosa County in 1855 and Minister of the Methodist Church South in 1864. (This researcher has found no appearance of Rev. James and Sally Clayton in the 1850 census, and it seems possible they may have been in the home of their son Rev. Elijah M Clayton.)

The 1860 census shows Rev. James, aged 84 and wife, Sallie, aged 65, living in Chambers Co. Margaret Clayton Russell does not know the date of "Old Cousin James Clayton's" death. Sally Clayton, wife of "Old Cousin James" ("Rev James), died Feb 20, 1866, aged 81 years, 5 months and 20 days.


James Clayton of Louisiana

We consider now "James Clayton, Jr.", born in N.C. in 1809, who married Mary McBride in 1828 and received $216 from Rev. James, his guardian and father in 1830. In 1850 he appears in the Mississippi census at Jackson and soon thereafter he went on to Louisiana. He lived successively in Jackson Parish, Concordia Parish and finally Red River Parish where his remains lie today. James Clayton of Louisiana had 13 children by two wives: An account of his life on p. 131 of the Red River Parish Heritage Book lists his children.

He married first in Butts Co. GA Mary McBride (born 1812 in SC). Issue of this union was:
1. John McBride Clayton (1830-1903) (detail later)
2. Mary C Clayton, born 1833 in GA
3. Harriet Clayton, born 1836 in GA
4. Henry M Clayton, born 1838 in GA
5. Isabella I. Clayton, born 1840 in GA
6. James E Clayton, born 1842, died 1862 in Confederate army
7. Robert W. Clayton, born 1845 (in MS according to 1850 census)
8. William D. Clayton, born 1847 (MS?)
9. E.W.Clayton, (daughter), born 1851 MS(?) Eunice(?)

The date of Mary McBride Clayton's death is not known by this writer, but about 1865 James Clayton married Mrs. Amanda Hobbs Curry Cox (born 1836 AL) and four children were born from this union. The marriage took place in Jackson Parish, LA, but soon the family was living in Red River Parish:
10. Anne Ellizabeth Clayton (1863-1934, md Sterling Price Carroll in Red River Parish, moved in 1912 to Sweetwater, TX
11. Amanda Jane Clayton (1869-77)
12. Thomas R. Clayton, born 1874 in Red River Parish, died 1932 in Baton Rouge, LA. He married Geraldine Blockson in Catahoula Parish in 1902 and had four children: Geraldine, Myra, Thomas, and Clarence
13. Mattie L. Clayton, born 1876, md Jim McGraw of Tallulah and had two daughters:: Olivia and Cecilia.

James Clayton died in 1879 and Amanda in 1885 and both were buried in Red River Parish. (For much of the info in this section the writer is indebted to the article of Kay Fowler of Coushatta, LA describing James Clayton, which appeared in Red River Parish Our Heritage (1989)

The Family of Capt. John McBride Clayton of Clayton, LA

John McBride Clayton was born in Butts Co., GA in 1830, son of James and Mary McBride Clayton. He was married to Lousette Mary Eugenia gahagan Gahagan in Bievnille Parish, LA in 1854. As a boy he lived in GA, probably AL briefly and Jackson County, MS. Moving to LA he lived briefly in Natchitoches Parish, but then settled in Concordia Parish where the Clayton family maintained residence until the present date. His father, James Clayton, also lived briefly in Concordia Parish.

At the outbreak of the war John McBride Clayton organized a company of infantry. It was said that to get the consent of his boys' mothers he promised to remain with them throughout the war. He kept this promise, although he had the sad experience of bringing home the body of his younger brother, James E Clayton about a month after they had gone into camp. John M. Clayton left the army at the end of the war with the rank of Captain.

After the war, the Missouri Pacific Railroad passing through the area, Capt. Clayton gave land for the right of way, and a station was placed there leading to the establishment of the town of Clayton. Capt. Clayton farmed and operated a mercantile establishment in Clayton and was quite active in local politics. He died in 1903.

Children of John McBride Clayton and Luzette Gahagan Clayton:
1. K.S.Clayton (daughter) 1855
2. Robert Wood Clayton born 1856 lived his entire life in Concordia Parish. He established Tanglewood plantation there and his son, Robert Waddell, his grandson, Robert and his great grandson, Robert operated Tanglewood--up to the present.
3. James Lawrence Clayton, born 1858, became a doctor and practiced medicine in Concordia Parish until his death in 1912. He married Anna Elizabeth Blockson in 1894 and had 3 daughters: Carrie Clayton Gibson, Ella, and Etta Odile Clayton Sullivan, and one son, J.L.Clayton, Jr. Carrie married Herman Gibson and they had two son, Dr. Herman Gibson, Jr. who practices in Ferriday and Clayton Gibson, who has lived his entire life in Clayton, LA.
4. Oren Henry Clayton (1860), married Adella Vauna Bright in 1887. This was not a happy marriage and O.H.Clayton eventually fled to TX.
5. John Elliott Clayton (1861-1918)(detail later)
6. Ella Louise Clayton married J.S.Johnston of Jonesville, LA. The Johnstons moved to Arkansas City, AK
7. Oscar Estell Clayton lived only 6 years. He was named for Oscar Estell, color bearer of Capt. John McBride Clayton's unit. At the final surrender Oscar Estell secured the company colors in the lining of his coat. He arrived home and delivered to his company commander. This (unsurrendered) emblem of Dixie remained in the home of my great grandfather until his death. His younger son, Shelley then donated it to the Confederate Museum in New Orleans, now a part of Howard Tilton Library at Tulane University. (The south shall rise again!!) Soon after the war Mary McBride Clayton died. Some time thereafter Capt. Clayton married Eudora Gibson:
8. Nettie Clayton, born 1872
9. Lou Clayton, born 1878, died young
10. Shelly Clayton, born 1882, attended Jefferson Military College in MS. Returning from school Shelly helped his father's business activities and continued to operate after Capt. Clayton's death.

The Family of John Elliott Clayton of LA and NM

John Elliot Clayton was born in Concordia Parish, LA went to law school at Tulane University and practiced law in Louisiana. He contracted tuberculosis and moved to Roswell New Mexico for his health. He had three children:

John Elliot Clayton, Jr. never married. He worked hard, saved his money and made the last years of his siblings and their children comfortable.

Ethel Clayton Campbell married Daniel Maurice Campbell in New Orleans, a wholesale grocer. In his last years he labored with congestive heart failure, and his wife drove for him and carried his sample case, no doubt prolonging his life for a period of time.

Robert Lawrence Clayton b. 1897 in New Orleans, married Mary Maude Leech of Memphis in 1922. In 1926 Robert L. Clayton became a United Methodist minister and served for the next 41 years (until his death) in the Louisiana Conference of the Methodist Church. He and his wife spent their retirement in Shreveport, where he died in 1967. His wife lived another three years and died in Cedar Pines Park CA, where she had gone to live near her daughter, Margaret Thomas.

Anyone seeking or sharing information about the Clayton family is invited to write to the author, Rev. R. L. Clayton of 160 Jocassee Lk Rd Salem, SC 29676 or e-mail to Clayton

Appendix A

This section amplifies and documents some of the material in the descriptive paragraphs above:

The earliest records of the Clayton family that I found occur in several books which have the particulars of the log and circumstances of the ship Submission. This was one of Penn's fleet. The log has a passenger list among whom were James and Jane Clayton and their children

The early career of the Clayton family in Kent is best documented by a book entitled Clayton-Hambly Ancestry of Thomas Hambly Beck, Esq., written by George V. Massey II and privately published in 1948. 12 copies are said to exist. One of them is in the Library of Congress and another at the Library of the Delaware Historical Society in Wilmington.

1745 Brooks Wm NC Currituck assigns headrights to James Clayton (NC Genealogy, Spring 1967 p 1826) primary source is Book of Rights, 1741-50 File no SS 906 Archives Raleigh.

The James Clayton land patents for Lake Matumuskeet are reported in Hofmans Colonial Grants Vol 1: 1755 #824; 1756 #5051, #5055, #5102; 1757 #5231 1762 #6098 #6099 (the last ones may have been granted posthumously) Most of the land was broken up into smaller parcels and sold.

Among the purchasers were: John Morris, James Davisson, Rich. Wm Silvester, Morris Jones, John Jennett, John Stokesberry, James Ellison, Henry Gibbs, Jr., Hugh Henry, Daniel Griffith (of Northampton Co., Va), Joseph Weston, Andrew Hopkins, James Hall, Wm Porter, and Samuel Warner (a mariner from New York). In addition to the above James Clayton, blacksmith, was a major purchaser of his father's land. There were two deeds to him in 1759 and two or three in 1760. We may assume the older man was settling his property on his son, but something over 100 lbs is mentioned in these deeds.

After the death of the elder James Clayton his son continued to sell the Clayton property. His grantee list included Caffey, Cartwright, Gibbs, Morris, Spencer, Harris, Weston, Swindell, Porter, Jones, Cutrell, Credle, Brooks, Baum. In addition one deed went to four men, three of them prominent citizens from Craven County. These were Edward Spencer, Christopher Neale, Richard Blackledge and John Jones.

The sale of James Clayton's effects occured June 26, 1762 and among the purchasers were Thomas Harris, Jno? Spencer?, Nicholas Coffey and Thomas Gibb. (Cf Weynette Haun's Hyde Co Orphan's Book (and Court Minutes) Book II, p 113 (It's on page 240 of the original source.) His personal effects appeared to be extremely minimal, and the sale included two parcels of land, to Coffey and Gibb. (It appears that Nicholas Coffey purchased 100 acres of land for 2 shillings.) The administrator, James Clayton, Jr., also appears to have received small sums from Ezekiel Cartright, Wm Porter, and John 'Touchberry' (Stuckbury). Page 241 of the Orphan's Book has an account of the disbursements of the estate.

Most of the data on Rev. James Clayton in Butts County can be found in the History of Butts County by Lois McMichael, Southern Historical Press, 1978 and 1988.

The material on Thomas Clayton and his family came largely from his descendant, Mrs. Margaret Clayton Russell, who now lives in Eufala, Ala.

The material on "Rev James" and his family subsequent to his residence in Butts County, Ga. came largely from the present writer, one of his descendants. For corrections, comment, or inquiry e-mail Larry Clayton.