October 4, 1812
Nancy Sarah Higginbotham, daughter of Joseph Alexander and Mary Ann Pinkham Higginbotham
was born. She later married John Spicer Braddock.
July 8, 1813
John Carroll Houston, son of Elizabeth Susannah Christopher and John Carroll Houston is
born. According to genealogy records, they also had another son, Samuel C., the C.
probably standing for Christopher.
October 30, 1813
Hester Ann, daughter of John David and Martha Christopher Braddock, was born. She later
married Nathaniel Wilds III.
December 27, 1813
According to an abstract in Camden County, Georgia court records, John D. Braddock and
John Christopher were executors on a bill of sale for slaves which Spicer Christopher sold
to Dr. Lemuel Church of St. Marys, attorney for Timothy Hall, Esq. Another bill of sale
from William Braddock to Dr. Church bore the same date.
Alexander Jackson Braddock, son of William and Charlotte Christopher Braddock was born. He
later married Isabella Higginbotham.
Mary Kempes Turnbull, who later
married James Braddock Edwards, was born.
William Greenwood Christopher,
son of William Bluet and Elizabeth Edwards Christopher, was born. He later Mary Floyd
The Spanish 1814 census translated from East Florida Papers by Donna Rachel Mills into the
book, First Families of Florida, lists the census by area:
Houston, the father 58
his wife 55
2 sons 7-16
1 daughter 7-16
elders wife was Jane Harvey.
Houston, the son 26
his wife 19
youngers wife was Elizabeth Susannah Christopher. Although they are enumerated with
no children, genealogy records show that son John Carroll was born July 8, 1813.
his wife 17
The name of Lewis
Christophers wife is not known.
|Juan Braddock 38
his wife 30
1 Son 0-7
is Martha Christopher. Although the census shows only one child, genealogy records
indicate he had five before 1814.
his wife 30
1 son 0-7
1 daughter 0-7
4 daughters 7-16
undoubtedly the father of Nathaniel Wilds who married Hester Ann Braddock.
Outside St. Augustine
his wife 26
1 daughter 0-7
1 daughter 7-16
wife is Elizabeth Edwards, daughter of John Edwards and Mary Braddock Edwards. The two
daughters were Martha Louise and Mary Ann.
his wife 30
1 son 0-7
1 daughter 7-16
wife is Charlotte Christopher. Although only two are shown, genealogy records indicate
they had five children by 1814.
his wife 22
Christopher Jr.s wife is Ann, daughter of John and Mary Braddock Edwards.
Isril Pool 36
Israel Pool was foreman of
the Fitzgerald's plantation, Black Hammock.
Either the enumerator erred or
women fudged on telling their age even back then. If she were 55 in 1814, she would have
been only ten years of age when she married John Cutler Braddock, as reliable records
show, in 1769.
1 son 1-7
1 son 7-16
1 daughter 7-16
John Edwards is a mystery. If Mary Braddock Edwards had a son in 1815 and died at the ripe
old age of 83 on January 10, 1858, as genealogy records indicate, this cannot be her
husband. His age is too young to have been Johns father. And he seems a little old
to be having children so young.
[EFP] In a letter to the governor, Phillip Yonge reported to the governor
that Lewis Christopher mistreated a slave. The governor replied that the
slave is in
and can find a new owner to buy her.
Henry Recus Edwards, son of John and Mary Braddock Edwards, was born. He later married
Esther Ann, daughter of William
and Ann Braddock Berrie, was born. She later married Henry E. Holland.
February 2, 1816
According to claim Con. B 22; Dg III 643, William Berrie received a grant of "350
acres, in Duval County, on Amelia River, Cowpen Branch . . . . near the place called
3, 1815 - June 24, 1815
Many slaves of residents of
and the St. Marys River escaped to
while British forces occupied the island. British rear Admiral Jorge
Cockburn declared all slaves coming under British protection as free.
Listed among several owners of the fugitive slaves were Lucy Fitzgerald,
Spicer Christopher Jr., and William Christopher.
February 15, 1816
According to claim Cons. E75-b DG IV 239. "John Houston [II] claims . . . . the
island and marshes of Little Talbot, bounded on the east by the sea, south, north, and
west by marshes separating it from Great Talbot Island; Governor White's grant to
Spicer Christopher, 1/31/1793. Claimant is in actual possession."
According to the same claim, he
". . . petitions for his quota of lands, 2/15/1816, 500 acres at Half-moon in Pine
Bluff and the remainder at Cane's Swamp on Nassau River at the head of Dam Creek. He was
received as an inhabitant of this Province in May, 1813 at Fernandina, before Governor
Kindelan who was visiting the city. Prior to this he was married to the youngest daughter
of Spicer Christopher by Vicar Miguel Crosby. Up to the present time he has cultivated
lands of his father-in-law with his Negroes. Governor Coppinger grants 715 acres,
2/16/1816, which correspond to head rights of John Houston, his wife, a white servant, and
26 slaves." The grants, which in actuality total only 705 acres, are made up of the
following: " . . .160 acres at Cane Swamp on Nassau River. . . ;" "155
acres at Half-Moon Bluff on Nassau River . . . ;" ". . . 120 acres at Mill
Branch, known as Dunn's Creek, on Nassau River . . . ;" and ". . . 270 acres at
Pine Island, Nassau River . . ."
He was married at the time to
Elizabeth Christopher, his first wife, who , according to genealogies, died in 1824. The
claim shows no children in their household, yet the tombstone of their son, John Carrol
Houston III gives his birth date as July 8, 1813.
In another undated claimCon. H74John Houston II petitioned for other lands his
father-in-law had owned including 100 acres on Talbot ". . . originally granted to
William Hendricks6/13/1809, who sold it to Spicer Christopher, who in turn willed it to
John Houston, who is in actual possession;" another " . . . 100 acres on Talbot
Island, bounded on
north by lands of John Houston, east by marshes, south by Fort George Bar, and west by
Talbot River, Governor White's head rights to Spicer Christopher, 4/12/1809. Claimant is
in actual possession;" and another 92 acres (2 caballerias and 23 acres) at
San Cristobel granted to Spicer Christopher 2/11/1792.
Ann Braddock Berrie, 36 years old, daughter of John and Lucy Cook Braddock and wife of
William Berrie died and was buried in the Berrie Cemetery 300 yards W of Spring Bluff, 50
ft North of US17 in Georgia.
Doris Bennett Howell has exellent pictures, not only of Ann's grave, but
also of William Berrie's on her web site at: Berrie
June 13, 1816
James Aldridge Braddock, son of William and Charlotte Christopher Braddock, was born. He
later married Winnifred Haddock.
Joseph C., nine year old son of William and Ann Braddock Berrie, died..
|June 29, 1817
The history of Spanish East Florida repeated itself, especially that of Amelia, when a
"Patriot Army" of 55 men landed on the island and captured it without
resistance. The invasion was planned and led by Gregor McGregor, a Scot who came to the
United States by way of South America. His intent was to make Amelia his base of
operations for taking all of Florida from Spain. He raised his "Green Cross"
flag and issued a proclamation:
Of the Liberating Army
Gregor MacGregor, Brigadier
General of the armies of the United Provinces of New Granada and Venezuela, and
General-in-Chief of the Armies for the Two Floridas, commissioned by the Supreme Director
of Mexico, South America, etc.
To the Inhabitants of the Island
Your brethren of Mexico, Buenos
Ayres; New Granada and Venezuela, who are so gloriously engaged in fighting for that
inestimable gift which nature has bestowed upon her children, and which all civilized
nations have endeavored to secure by social compacts-desirous that all the sons of
Columbia should participate in that imprescriptible right--have confided to me the command
of the land and naval forces.
Peaceable inhabitants of Amelia!
Do not entertain any danger of oppression from the troops which are now in possession of
your Island, either for your persons, property or religion; however various the climes in
which they may have received their birth, they are nevertheless your brethren and friends.
Their first object will be to protect your rights; your property will be held sacred and
inviolable; and everything done to promote your real interests by co-operation with you in
carrying into effect the virtuous desires of our constituents, thereby becoming the
instruments for the commencement of a national emancipation. Unite your forces with ours,
until America shall be placed by her high destinies to that rank among nations that the
Most High has appointed-a country, by its extent and fertility, offering the greatest
sources of wealth and happiness.
The moment is important. Let it
not escape without having commenced the great work of delivering Columbia from that
tyranny which has been exercised in all parts, and which, to continue its power, has kept
the people in the most degrading ignorance, depriving them of the advantages resulting
from a free intercourse with other nations, and of that prosperity which the arts and
sciences produce when under the protection of wholesome laws, which you will be enabled
properly to appreciate only when you will have become a free people.
You who, ill-advised, have
abandoned your homes, whatever may be the place of your birth, your political or religious
opinions, return without delay, and resume your wonted occupations. Deprecate the evil
counsels your enemies may disseminate among you. Listen to the voice of honor, to the
promises of a sincere and disinterested friend, and return to the fulfillment of those
duties which nature has imposed upon you.
He who will not swear to maintain
that independence which has been declared will be allowed six months to settle his
affairs, to sell or remove his property without molestation, and enjoy all the advantages
which the laws grant in such cases.
Friends or enemies of our present
system of emancipation, whoever you be, what I say unto you is the language of Truth; it
is the only language becoming a man of honor, and as such I swear to adhere religiously to
the tenor of this proclamation.
Dated at Head Quarters, Amelia
Island, June 30th, 1817.
hoped for the active support of Amelia Island and its surrounding areas
predominately English-speaking population. Instead, many of them joined in a local militia
that fought against the invaders (as a land claim record cited later indicates Spicer
Christopher Jr. served as a sergeant in the militias cavalry, it is highly
probable that some of his kinsmen also served). A lack of support from Amelia residents
and the gradual unraveling of his small, undisciplined army prompted McGregor to bail out
of the fiasco September 4th, leaving Luis Aury, a Frenchman, to run the show. Aury elected
himself commander-in-chief and issued a proclamation:
East Florida, September 20th - The inhabitants of the Island of Amelia are informed, that
tomorrow the Mexican flag will be hoisted on the fort with the usual formalities. They are
invited to return as soon as possible to their homes, or send persons in their confidence
to take possession of the property existing in the houses, which is held sacred. All
persons desirous of recovering their property are invited to send written orders, without
which nothing will be allowed to be embarked.
Proclamations for the organization of the place will immediately
AURY, Commander-in-Chief R.
HUBBARD, Governor, etc.
with the goings on a rivers width from the United States, the President, on November
12, 1817, ordered that the invaders be removed peaceably or forcibly. The U. S. Adams,
along with two brigs, a schooner, and 250 fighting men, was dispatched to the scene. The
message sent to Aury was unmistakably clear :
|U. S. Ship John
Adams, off Amelia, December 22, 1817.
We have received orders from our government to take possession of Amelia
Island, and to occupy the port of Fernandina with a part of our force, which will be moved
over as soon as it will be convenient for your troops to evacuate it.
To avoid unnecessary delay, we
think proper at this time to inform you, in the event of your acquiescence in this demand,
that you will be at liberty to depart with the forces under your command, and such
property as belongs unquestionably to them will be held sacred.
You are to leave the public
property found by General MacGregor at Fernandina in the same condition as it was when
taken, and the property of the inhabitants of Amelia Island must be restored to them,
where they have been forcibly dispossessed of it; and no depredations on private property
from this period will be permitted with impunity.
Should you, contrary to the
expectations of the President of the United States, refuse to give us peaceable possession
of the island, the consequence of resistance must rest with you.
We have the honor to be, etc.,
J. D. HENLEY, Captain in the navy, and commander-in-chief of the naval forces of the
United States off Amelia.
JAMES BANKHEAD, Major 1st Battalion artillery, United States army, and commanding military
with a long, rambling message questioning what jurisdiction the United States had over, in
his words, "this republic." The response he got made it doubly clear that he
should evacuate and quickly:
|U. S. Ship John
Adams, off Amelia Island, December 23, 1817. Sir:
We have had the honor to receive your communication of the 22nd
instant, and will briefly remark, that, as officers in the service of the United States,
we are bound, to obey the orders emanating from the authorities of our government, without
any discussion or animadversion on our part as to the correctness of them. We have been
ordered by the President of the United States to take possession of Amelia Island; and as
the President has expressed his solicitude that the effusion of blood may be avoided, if
possible, it must be gratifying to us to be informed by you that no resistance will be
made to us. We will again remark that private property will be sacred, and that our orders
extend only to the public property captured by General MacGregor at Fernandina.
We propose to land a force today
and to hoist the American flag; under that flag no oppression or
unjust measure will
ever be witnessed. And we feel
assured that there will be no difficulty in the arrangement made by us. The squadron will
immediately sail into the harbor, when the commanding officer of the land forces will wait
on the commander-in-chief to make the necessary arrangements for the landing of the
We have the honor to be, etc.,
J. D. HENLEY, Captain in the navy, etc.
J. BANKHEAD, Major, 1st battalion artillery.
response was brief:
Aury, Commander-in-chief of forces at Fernandina. Headquarters, Fernandina, Island of
Amelia, December 23, 1817, and 8th of the Independence.
I have had the honor to receive your
letter of this date. I am ready to surrender this place to the forces under your command,
whenever you may judge proper to come and take possession thereof.
I have the honor to be, etc.,
citations concerning the invasion of the Patriot Army are excepted from The Florida
Historical Quarterly, volume 7, issue 1, "MacGregor's Invasion of Florida"
by T. FREDERICK DAVIS.)
Early in the afternoon of
December 23d, about two hundred American troops landed, and the Mexican flag was replaced
by Old Glory.
October 20, 1817
According to claim Con. H58; DG IV 281, Elijah Higginbotham, son of Burroughs and
Elizabeth Incy Higginbotham, received a grant for "350 acres on Little St. Marys
River, 7 miles from its junction with St. Marys River." Three of Elijah's several
children married Braddocks.
According to unconfirmed claim
H25; G&S VI 60, 121, Thomas Higginbotham, son of Burroughs and Elizabeth Incy
Higginbotham, ". . . claimed 200 acres on St. Marys River, given permission to
occupy it 10/20/1817." according to claim Unc. H25; G&S VI 60, 121, Surveyor
George J. F. "Clarke writes, 10/17/1818, 'Consequent to the disposition of S. S.,
10/20/1817, I have given permission to Thomas Higginbotham to occupy and enjoy the use of
200 acres which are what corresponds to him and his family, in the place that suits him on
the St Matys River, without injury to any other person, and are measured for him when he
asks it." claim
|November 16, 1817
According to claim Con. H59; DG IV 281, Joseph Higginbotham, son of Burroughs and
Elizabeth Incy Higginbotham, received a grant for "300 acres on Spell's Swamp, a
branch of Nassau River." Two of Joseph Alexander Higginbotham's several children
December 20, 1817
Zachariah Haddock, grandfather of Winnifred Haddock, who married James Aldridge Braddock,
and who had migrated from Pitt County, NC to Florida by way of Georgia, Had four sons.
Zachariah, Jr., Ezekial, Joseph, and William. In consecutive unconfirmed claims H1 through
H4, each had land surveyed for him in "Cabbage Swamp on the St. Mary's River."
May 5, 1818
According to undated, unconfirmed claim Unc. W13; DG V 421,Nathaniel WIlds II,
father-in-law of Hester Ann Braddock, ". . . claims . . . . 184 acres on St. Marys
River near the mouth of Little St. Marys River. Claimant is in actual possession. . . .
Clarke certifies plat according to S. S. of 10/20/1817, laid out for Nathaniel
Wilds, captain of militia, for 184 acres . . . 5/8/1818
May 20, 1818
According to undated claim Unc. H31 made by John Carroll Houston II for land that had been
granted to his father, ". . . John C. Houston petitions the governor, 3/1/1818, to
confirm the grant of 700 acres, 180 of which are at Dames Point on the St. Johns River,
and the rest on Star Island on the Nassau River, made to him May, 1816. . . .
Governor Coppinger makes the grant, 5/20/1818."
William Monteith Braddock, son of John David and Martha Christopher Braddock, was born. He
later married Jane Christopher.
William Berrie's wife, Ann
Braddock, having died in 1816, he married widow Catherine Ann Jones Dilworth.
Julia Ann, daughter of Thomas
Ellis Hardee and Mary Ann Berrie Hardee, was born. She later married John McPherson
John McPherson Berrian Goodbread
was born. He later married Julia Ann Hardee.
[EFP] James Bixby sued John
Houston for damages in a lumber contract. Ship Yard Plantation is
February 22, 1819
Spain sold Florida to the United States for no cost beyond the U.S. assumption of some $5
million of claims by U.S. citizens against Spain. Formal U.S. occupation began in 1821,
and General Andrew Jackson, the hero of the War of 1812, was appointed military governor.
A transcript of the treaty can be seen at: Florida
Purchase. Florida was organized as territory March 30, 1821.
May 19, 1819
David Ogilvie, son of William and Janet Tait Ogilvie, is born. He later married Elizabeth
Greenwood Braddock, then Louranah Geiger. He lived to be 101.
September 15, 1819
Mary Ann Berrie, daughter of William and Ann Braddock Berrie, married Thomas Ellis Hardee,
son of John and Sarah Ellis Hardee.
November 3, 1819
According to claim Con. C 41; DG, "Juan D. Bradick, executor and representative of
his wife as one of the heirs of the late Spicer Christopher, petitions for title to 600
acres at north end of Talbot Island and also another copy of their concession since the
one they have is torn and almost illegible. Signed John D. Braddock, 11/3/1819."
According to claim Con. C 41;
DG, "Spicer Christopher, first-sergeant of militia and cavalry, who has suffered a
considerable set-back in the rebellion, petitions to exchange his land on Nassau (except
25 acres which he reserves for wood to repair his houses and fences) for an equal number
of acres on Talbot between the line of William Hendrick and the north point. This land,
although carrascal [black jack oak land, perhaps cutover brush] can accommodate his
horses better than where they will be exposed to the insults of the rebels, if they should
return. Governor grants; Aguilar attests, 11/3/1819."
The rebellion referred to was
the invasion in late June 1817 led by Gregor MacGregor. Spicer, the younger, served in the
militia formed to defend against the invaders.
Lucy E. Berrie, 12 year old daughter of William and Ann Braddock Berrie, died.
February 21, 1821
John Edwards Wirick, son of Adam and Adeline Catherine Edwards Wirick, was born. He later
married Ann Josephine Davis.
In 1812, the Spanish wrote a new constitution for its East and West Florida possessions
relaxing to some extent the stringent controls imposed on the citizens. Some of this was
to be accomplished through allowing local areas there own municipal governments rather
than citizens having to travel to St. Augustine to conduct even the most trivial of
government affairs. Eight years later, not all of the articles of the constitution,
including the one concerning municipalities, had not been put into effect. The disgruntled
citizenry of what is now Nassau County drew up the following petition containing more than
200 names and sent it to Governor Sebastian Kindelan of East Florida. (Some of the names
were necessarily edited.)
A PETITION FROM THE INHABITANTS OF THE ST. MARYS ST. JOHNS DISTRICT FOR THE
ORGANIZATION OF A MUNICIPALITY
We the Inhabitants that dwell on the St. Johns and St. Marys Rivers, and on the Mainland
and Islands adjacent to this Province, with the greatest respect for Your Excellency,
congratulate our selves on the favorable change of government that has been brought about
by the adoption of the constitution of 1812, as appears to be true from what we have seen
in Royal Decrees ordering that it be published in all the Spanish dominions, and that the
proper oaths to observe the Constitution be taken by the Vassals, a requisite that, to our
great surprise, has not been carried out in these Districts, whose inhabitants being
desirous of enjoying, sustaining, and protecting the benefits conferred by it, Solicit
Your Excellency to be so Kind as to establish it in the proper manner throughout the whole
Province, conceding to us the privileges that are granted by it to interior Towns
according to articles 309 and 310-since the number of inhabitants here is greater than one
thousand souls, whose names we can obtain if they are required.
For all of which we hope
and trust that Your Excellency will be pleased to take our rights under due consideration,
and order that elections be held on the first Sunday in next December for the formation of
the new government, according to the provisions of chapter 3, article 37 of the
Constitution, without it being necessary for us to have recourse to the Superior
Authorities, for this is a right that has been granted to us by the voice of the Nation,
whose rights and privileges we are unanimously, and loyally disposed to Sustain and
protect in all their parts. This establishment, Mr. Governor, will prevent the Anarchy
that we have experienced up to now, along with many inconveniences, such as having the
Alcalde [mayor] of the Capital order an inhabitant to go there to answer charges, an act
that we consider as void for two reasons: first, because the Alcalde is not eligible to be
such According to article 129 of the constitution, and, second, because his jurisdiction
does not extend beyond his own District; and not only for this reason, but for others that
present themselves every day, such as ordering an inhabitant to appear in the Capital to
give testimony, which individual must expose his person to the fatigues of a journey of
one hundred miles on which his life is in danger, and on which he has expenses which
perhaps he cannot sustain without great injury to Himself. All these considerations cause
us to trouble Your Excellency, from whom we expect the grace that with justice we the
undersigned request for ourselves and for many others who are absent at their work. Tierra
firme in the district of Fernandina, October 10, 1820
James Dell, James L.
McTier, Jno. T. Lowe, William Braddock, James Armstrong, Chrisr. C. Minchin, John D.
Braddock, Isaac Wingate, John Pearce, E. Waterman, James Pearce, Solomon May, Samuel
Russell, James G. Smith Sr., Samuel Russell Jr., John B. Christopher, James Burnett,
Francis Turan, Isaac Tucker, B M. Lowe, Robert Rollings, James Sloan, Edward Turner, Isaac
Holbert, Jesa Turner, Abram Smith, John Flenin, Saml. Burnett, Charles Seton, Hezekiah
Tucker, Thomas Backhouse, John Edwards Sr. Joseph J Lou [i ] [Senior], Seymour Pickett,
Cyrus Briggs, Henry Groves, Lewis Christopher, Carlos Sibbald, William Sterrat, Elisha
Redmon, Chas. Broward, Jesa Waller, David Turner, Peter Duran, John Uptegrove, James
Bishop, Gideon Elvington, Jesa Samford, John Wilkerson, John Bessent, Jacob Elvington,
Nath. Wilds, Stephen Eubanks, John Lozier, T. Reynolds, Z. Kingsley, H. Lowe, John
Johnson, Wesley Lowe, Wm. Hobkirk, Saml. Ledworth, Wm. Adams, Jeremiah Wingate, Robert
Miller, John Wingate, John Higginbotham, N. Barker, Lewis Bachlott, Willm. Walker,
Alexander Bachlott, John Carr, Drewry Peal, Joseph Bachlott, Wm. Nelson, John J. Ward,
Jesse Youngblood, John Dewitt, John Silcock Jr., W. K. Rain, John Silcock, Wm. McCulla,
Saml. Worthington, Thomas Higginbotham, Isaac Green, James Crozier, John Purvis, Isaiah.
Hart, Joseph Sauls, Joseph Higginbotham,, Elijah Higginbotham,, David Higginbotham,,
Theodore Dodge, Farqr. Bethune, Joseph. Gault, Pedro Pons, Domingo Acosta, Antonio Diaz,
Jose Alvarez, Spicer Christopher, Wm. Fitzpatrick, Joseph Rain, Samuel Kingsly, C. Hovey,
George Higginbotham, Jno. Richard, John Rouse, Jas. Long, Jesse Long, William Crozier, Wm.
Hogan, Conls. Rain, John Jennings, Joseph Haddock, Jonathan Thigpen, Wade Silcock, John
Bachlott Jr., Ambrose Hull, Levin Gunby, John Creighton, Simeon Dell, Archalus Lindsey,
Charles Love, Shack Standly, Wm. Donnel, John G. Barrow, Thomas Barrow, Hincha Hollomon,
Harmon H Holloman, Enoch Daniel, Willam Ellin, Levi Cole [Coler?], Briton Knight, David
Silcock, Saml. Sauls, Blake Wells Jr., Wm. Drummond, William Sillcock, Chas. Deshon, Mamke
Deezer, Miguel Mabrity, J. G. Rushing, Ynocencio Cardona, John Jucy, Miguel Vima, John
Bessent Jr., Juan Reyes, Lewis Levy, Antonio Martinez, Levi Johns, Franco Triay, J. Tison,
Juan Triay, Levi Sparkman, Willm. Jno. Mills, William Frink, Peter Suarez, James Jream,
Tomas Suarez, John Huse John Warren, James Walker, John Daniel Vaughan, Stephen Vanzant,
Daniel Vaughan, James Stephenson ,William H. G. Saunders, William Drummond, Stephen Woods,
Lewis Bailey, Wm. Dunn, Robert Hudson, James T Prevatte, John Stafford, Allagoo Suggs,
Horace Tiffney, Lewis Bailey, Smith Cannon, Ellis Stafford, George Knight, Sameul
Stafford, Edward Dixon,Thomas Stafford, John Dixon, Abraham Colson, Henry Swiney, A.
Colson, William Hall, Michael Johnson, James Sharber, Den. Sistrunk, Henry Holmes, Robt.
Harrison, William Sparkman, Samuel Harrison, Burbon Lowden Jr., James Sparkman, Epm.
Harrison, Thomas Prevatte, John Houston, Joseph Prevatte, James Turner, Andres Lopez, Wm.
Fitzpatrick, Juan Cereopoly Jr.
The above petition was excerpted from "The Return of Spanish
Rule to the St. Marys and the St. Johns, 1813-1821" by D. C. Corbitt." The
article appeared in The Florida Historical Quarterly volume 20 issue 1. A footnote to the
article states: "The census of 1814 gives the following figures : St. Johns River,
117; Fernandina, 518 ; Amelia Island, 209 ; Nassau, 118 ; St. Marys, 135; Tiger Island, 10 ; Talbot Island,
April 8, 1821
Isabelle, daughter of Joseph Alexander and Mary Ann Pinkham Higginbotham, was born. She
later married Alexander Jackson Braddock.
William Greenwood Braddock, son of William and Charlotte Christopher, was born. He later
married Laura, last name unknown.
Susannah, daughter of John David
and Martha Christopher Braddock, was born.
February 7, 1822
Winnifred Haddock, daughter of Joseph and Mary Elizabeth Higginbotham Haddock, was born.
She later married James Aldridge Braddock.
June 3, 1822
On this date John Carrol Houston Sr. coveyed lands he had been granted to two of his
children. In so doing, he created a genealogical mystery for those of us who take pleasure
in piecing together the jigsaw puzzle of our ancestry. The gift to the son, John Houston
II, is revealed in a claim he submitted to the Commissioners Appointed to Ascertain Claims
to Lands and Titles in East Florida years later (date not given:
Unc. H32 G&S V422 DG V 71
1. claims, through[Abraham] Bellamy, 170 acres on the Nassau River, bounded by the river
except on the north. The title is based on George J. F. Clarke's survey made for John C.
2. Clarke certifies plat for 170 acres for John Houston, Sr., 5/16/1816, of which 30 are
on Star Island, and 140 acres are on high ground nearby. Star Island in a zacate
[grassland] surrounded by the river except to the north, where the 140 acres are located.
The lands of Carlos Seton are shown to the southwest of the loop of the river and Thomas
Creek joins the river to the south.
3.John Carroll Houston sells to John Houston for love and affection and $5.00, the above
described land, 6/3/1822. Witnesses: Joseph Hull and William Robertson. Attested by [?]
jenkins, notary public, San Pablo.
4. Duplicate of Clarke's plat shows the lands of John Uptegrove on the west. Decree of U.
S. Commissioners: Clarke survey. Rejected.*
* The Board found in addition to a lack of title and proof of
occupancy that there was some confusion in names. John Houston, the first claimant, signed
himself John Carroll Houston in a deed of the land to John Houston, presumably a different
person from himself.--G&S, V, 424.
Excerpts from another
undated claim, this one submitted by Louisa Ann Houston, now married to a Christopher,
reveals the gift of land she received from her father, John Carrol Houston, Sr.:
|Christopher, Louisa Ann
Unc.10 G&S IV586 V422, 425
claims 180 acres on east side of the St. Johns River at a place called Dames Neck, bounded
on the west by the river and Dames Creek . . .
John Carroll Houston, for love and $5.00 conveys to Louisa Ann
Houston the land in the attached survey, 6/3/1822
This 180 acres is part of
700 granted to John Carroll Houston, Sr. May 20, 1818.
The genealogical mystery is:
none of our genealogies show John Carroll Houston and his wife Jane Harvey having a
daughter named Louisa Ann. The closest our genealogies come to the name is Louisa Anna
Houston, daughter of John Carroll II and Mary Greenwood, who wasn't born until c1835 and
was married to John Gresham. And the only Houston/ Christopher marriage we show is that of
John Carroll Houston II and Elizabeth Susannah Christopher. Our records show Spicer
Christopher's son Lewis as married, but his wife's name as unknown. Perhaps mysterious
Louisa Ann Houston was Lewis' wife? This consideration is supported by the indication in
undated claim Con. B74; DG IV 163, submitted by John F. Brown to the Commissioners
Appointed to Ascertain Claims to Lands and Titles in East Florida, that Lewis Christopher
and John Houston each had lands at Dames Point.
November 25, 1822
Residents of East Florida, by and large, were happy to be a territory and under the
protection of the United States Government; however, in a memorial to Congress they
expressed a concern that the taxes necessary to support courts the government planned to
establish in the territory were disproportionate to their means of paying them. From Territorial
Papers Florida, volume XXII, 1821 - 1824:
TO CONGRESS BY THE INHABITANTS OF EAST FLORIDA DISTRICT
[NA:HF, 17 Cong.,
[November 25, 1822]
The Memorial of
the subscribers for themselves & other Residents of the Eastern [sic] section of the
Territory of Florida to The President & Congress of the United States, respectful1y
sheweth: That your Memorialists forming a large Majority of that part of the Inhabitants
cal1ed Planters or those whose existence is identified with the cultivation of the Soil,
feeling deeply grateful for the prospect of being releived [sic] from Fronteer[sic]
anarchy & distress by the providential supervention [sic] of the Government of the
United States with which they declare themselves fully satisfied: But feeling greatly
allarmed [sic] at the report of subsequent Ordenances [sic] & the adoption of Inferior
Courts & County Regulations &c by the Legislative Council, requiring to be
supported by a System of Taxation disproportioned to the means & abilities of the
Inhabitants from whom they are to be levied & entirely at variance with economy &
common reason; These Inhabitants therefore humbly pray that Congress after due enquiry
[sic] may see fit to suspend their assent to the Ordenances of Our Territorial Legislative
Council as far as they relate to Taxes or County Courts &c which under the Just but
limited provisions of the United States expressed in an Act of Congress entitled an Act
for the establishment of a Territorial Government in Florida are rendered at present
Territory of Florida 25 Novr 1825
James R. Houston
John C. Houston
F D McDonell
John R. Hogans
Geo: J F. Clarke
Wm H. Fitzpatrick
John D Braddock
John T Lowe
Saml B. Fitzpatrick
W H G Saunders
Saml Harrison Junr
December 2, 1822
Anna Sever Sapp was born. She later married Spicer Christopher Braddock.
September 6, 1823
Abstract of Camden County Court record: "John Christopher and wife Hester, nee
Braddock, to John David Braddock, trustee for her. Bill of sale dated Sept. 6, 1823, for
10 slaves inherited by her, also lands, from her mother Mrs. Lucy Fitzgerald. It is stated
that unhappy differences have arisen between said John and his wife and they
have agreed to separate."
December 1, 1823
The first grand jury ever selected in Jacksonville had several Nassau County names that
became entwined with the Braddock family (excerpted from "History of Early
Jacksonville, Florida and Vicinity, 1513-1924," T. Frederick Davis.):
regular court ever held here convened Monday, December 1, 1823. Hon. Joseph L. Smith was
the Judge. Judge Smith was the father of General E. Kirby Smith, Confederate General. The
first grand jury was impaneled December 2, 1823, and was composed of the following grand
jurors: John Bellamy, Foreman; Stephen J. Eubanks, John Houston, Isaac Tucker, Charles
Broward, Seymour Pickett, John Broward, John Price, James Dell, William Matthews, Cotton
Rawls, A. G. Loper, Llewellyn Williams, Charles Seton, John D. Braddock, John C. Houston,
Nathaniel Wilds, and Stephen Vanzant.. James Dell who served on this jury was probably a
kinsman of the Sheriff, James Dell."
The jury received
pay for their attendance and travel expense at 5˘ a mile. John David Braddock, traveling
from his home at Evergreen at the Little St. Marys River chalked up 124 miles.
The first civil case tried in
Jacksonville (excerpted from "History of Early Jacksonville,") also had its
share of Nassau County folks and had its share of Braddock related names:
civil case called for trial was that of Ephraim Harrison vs. John D. Vaughan, and was
disposed of as follows: This day came the parties aforesaid, by their attorneys and
thereupon came a jury, to wit:F. D. McDonnell, Lewis Christopher, Britton Knight,
James Rouse, William Sparkman, John Higginbotham, David Turner, Matthew H. Philips, John
G. Brown, John G. Rushing, William G. Dawson, and Lewis Thigpen, who were sworn well and
truly to try the issue joined between the parties; and on motion of the plaintiff by his
attorney, and for reasons satisfactory to the court, it is ordered that the jury be
discharged from rendering a verdict herein, and this cause be continued until the next
term, upon the plaintiff paying all costs of the defendant herein expended."
According to Territorial Papers Florida Territory, volume XXII, 1821
- 1824, "Abstract of Grand and Petit Jurors," John David Braddock was appointed
a juror for the Little St. Marys District, and Lewis Christopher was appointed for the St.
December 20, 1823
Salvaging cargoes of ships that wrecked on the abundant reefs and shoals along Florida's
lengthy coastline was a lucrative industry. Some "wreckers" were not above using
any means, such as placing false lights, to lure ships aground. Salvage cargoes were
usually taken by wreckers to a port, usually in the Bahamas, for divvying up the spoils
between them, the owners of their salvage ships, and others with an interest. Citizens of
East Florida sent a memorial to Congress requesting that legislation be considered for
requiring wreckers to bring their salvage into a port in Florida, and that Fernandina be
designated that port. From Territorial Papers Florida, volume XXII, 1821 -
|MEMORIAL TO CONGRESS BY CITIZENS OF EAST
[NA:HF, 18 Cong.,
TERRITORY OF FLORIDAY[sic] [December 20,1823]
To the Honourable
the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States in Congress assembled
The Memorial of the
under signed Citizens of that portion of the Territory called East
Memorialists composed of the Inhabitants of Amelia Island and the adjacent Country beg
leave to represent to your Honourable Body the advantages that will arrise[sic] to the
Territory and to all others concerned if their petition be grantedWe pray that your
Honourable Body will pass such regulations respecting the wrecking vessels that receive
their cargoes on the coast of Florida, as may be most benificial[sic] to all concerned the
underwriter, the owners & wreckersWe therefore pray you will take into
consideration the following statementThe wrecking business has been carried on for
many years by British subjects, under proper regulations and restrictions; which are
absolutely necessary to secure a correct division of the property savedThe
enterprising American Citizens will now partake of that lucrative business, and no doubt a
large amount of property will be saved to the owners and underwriters; if judicious laws
be instituted to put on an equal footing the wrecker, owner and underwriter, that
the property so saved, may be divided agreeable to the Laws of our country; which can not
conveniently be done without all the wrecked property saved should be brought into some
particular ports and there sold for the benefit of all concerned. We therefore beg leave
to suggest the propriety of having some convenient and Safe Port in Florida, where all
vessels that have wrecked goods on board shall deliver their cargoes; the owners,
underwriters & wreckers can have their agents to attend to their interist[sic]; it
will secure to the United States a considerable revenue, and to the underwriters their
proportion of the property savedat present if a vessel is wrecked and the Cargo is
saved by different wrecking Vessels each vessel takes in a cargo and proceeds to a port
most convenient for the master, and every vessel might go to a different port, how then is
the Captain who is a general agent for the underwriters able to attend to their interist;
and perhaps it is not known to Him to what port the wrecking vessels are boundIf
some particular ports is disignated[sic] in which all wreck goods shall be deposited, the
Captain can then remain, at the wreck until the last of His Cargo is shipped, and sure to
find the property in the hands of the agent for the underwritersWe therefore pray
that your honourable body will disignate[sic] the Port of Fernandina (Amelia Island) as
the Port of deposit for all wrecked goods that may be saved to the East of Cape Florida;
and all vessels going on a wrecking voyage shall give bonds before they depart, to deliver
all the wreck goods they may find on the coast of Florida in the said Port of Fernandina,
and there to be sold agreeable to Law-The advantage that would arrise to this Territory
and the United States will be greater; at present many of the wrecking vessels carry their
wreck goods to Nassaw[sic] New Providence, by which the United States are deprived of the
benefit that should arise from the wrecked property saved.
submit with great respect to the consideration of your Honourable body the facts here in
Island Decbr 20th 1823
Sam' Harrison Senr
Jno T. Lowe
G. Reynolds Franco
F D McDonell
Francis G. Triay
John Secopoly [Cercopoly)
Jose Landerol [Carderol)
Sam' Harrison Senr
B M Dell
Enoch Daniel Sen
Enoch Daniel Jun
James G. Smith
J. Middleton Junior
John D Bradock
their has not been time to procure more
someone forged some of the signatures as the petition had the notation, "Groups of
the signers are in the same hand." at the bottom of it.
Citizens of East Florida sent
another memorial to Congress the same day requesting, in addition to Fernandina being made
the port for receiving wrecker salvage, that it be made a port of entry, with equal
footing with ports in the States in foreign trade. From Territorial Papers
Florida, volume XXII, 1821 - 1824:
MEMORIAL TO CONGRESS BY CITIZENS OF EAST FLORIDA
[NA:HF, 18 Cong.,
1 sess. :DS )
FLORIDA [December 20, 1823]
To the Honourable the Senate and
House of representatives of the United States in Congress Assembled
The Memorial of the undersigned
Citizens of that portion of the Territory called East Florida Respectfully sheweth
Memorialists Composed of the Inhabitants of Amelia Island and the adjacent Country, beg
leave to represent to your Honourable body the grievance which they Suffer by being
deprived of their former privilege as a free PortFernandina was made a Port of Entry
in the year in 1811, and continued so until the Cession; at that period it was annexed to
the collection district of St Marys GeorgiaThe inhabitants not having committed any
act to forfeit their right, think it hard, that they shou1d be deprived of getting their
supplies; except at a great expence by sending to Georgia for themIt likewise
prevents all enterprise, as their is no encouragement for the inhabitants of Florida
entering into foreign trade; as the advantages arising must go to the state of Georgia,
under the present collection division of this CountryThe hardship of entering
vessels there and giving bonds, is very great; as many that would enter into the
commercial line residing in F1orida cannot secure the duties in Georgia; when it would not
be inconvenient to secure them in F1orida; all which embarrassments discourage the
inhabitants of Florida entering into any foreign speculation, although they have many
articles for exportation both for the European and West India Tradeat present our
supplies of West India produce come from the Northern states but which if we had a free
trade we should import directFernandina (Amelia Is1and) is the only good and safe
Harbour in East Florida;at the spring tides twenty one feet of water is on the Bar,
which is no way dangerous; it is spacious and safe for National Vessels as well as
merchantmen-Our Exports at present consists of the best Sea Island cotton for the European
Market, and a 1arge quantity of naval Stores will in time be shippedFor the West
India market Ranging Timber sawed Lumber-spars-staves-shingles & the proceeds of which
would be returned here in West India Produce, the duties arising would be
considerablewe therefore pray that your Honourable body will take our case into
consideration, for although no immediate advantage might derive to the United States, in
time it will be the Emporium of Florida for European and West India goodWe therefore
pray that you will admit Fernandina to be a port of entry with all the privileges granted
to a port in the states
submit with great respect to the consideration of Your Honourable body the facts herein
stated. FERNANDINA Amelia Island Decbr 2Oth 1823--
John Rodman Esqr Collector of
St. Augustine by his order Chas
Sam' Harrison Senr
J. T. Lowe
F D McDonell
Franco L Pons
Francis G. Triay
B M Dell
Enoch Daniel Sen
E Daniel Jun
James G. Smith
J. Middleton Junior
John D. Braddock
|There has not been
time to procure more