Ancestral Family Topic 490

 490   Capt. Joseph Jennings (1739-1804)
Pedigree Chart 09

Capt. Joseph Jennings, in his own words
If he could speak to us today, Capt. Joseph Jennings might describe his life as follows.

I married in Lunenburg 26 February 1767 Anne Billups,  who was born in 1749 undoubtedly a granddaughter of Joseph Billups of Lunenburg County, and likely the daughter of John Billups.
Much of the land I bought for planting belonged to William Watson whose father had accumulated 22,500 acres in Nottoway and Amelia counties. I served as second lieutenant in Captain Watson’s militia company during the Revolution and was commissioned a captain myself 20 September 1777.  Virginia reimbursed me for one gun and 550 pounds of beef I provided the Army, and paid me for driving cattle a couple of months. 
Not only was I a soldier and planter, I ran a grist mill and operated an ordinary, which was not a tavern, but just a residence that could provide ordinary food and lodging to people passing through. The county set the rates I could charge. I put one ordinary on some land I bought on West Creek in 1778 and it went on to become the present town of Jennings Ordinary, named for me of course, up Highway 360 from Burkeville.  In 1800 I owned 3 horses and 7 slaves more than 12 years of age. 
At the time I made my will in 1803, my daughter Mary was not getting along with her husband, Richard Oliver. So I directed my executors to help her get a divorce if he mistreated her. After Ann died in 1811, our children used an arbitrator to help divide the estate. I guess my will wasn’t clear enough.

Nottoway County appointed Joseph Jennings, son of Joseph Jennings, a constable in 1797, and perhaps he was a son who predeceased his father. 
It is notable that in 1781 William Billups placed his name on an Amelia County petition just below James Oliver and his son Richard Oliver, the latter of whom would marry Joseph’s daughter Mary.  We have otherwise not identified him.

Deeds and other court records
About two months after his marriage, on 7 May 1767, Joseph bought 360 acres running “through the middle of the Ordinary house” and next to the Musterfield Spring on Deep Creek and next to land of his father from William Watson for £60.12.  Joseph sold this land back to Watson 27 April 1770, for £60 when they discovered William Watson Sr. had devised the land to his son entail and it was thus not legally transferrable. 
In 1773 William Jennings Sr. gave Joseph a “Negro boy named Peter” and 200 of acres in Amelia County between Cabin Branch and Deep Creek. This was land on which William and Mary were living and Joseph was not to take possession of the land until both his parents had died.  This was may be the Jennings plantation although obviously William was still living then. On 20 June 1774 Joseph and Ann sold this tract to Joseph’s brother-in-law Samuel Thompson for £200 and deeded 4 “Negroes, Bristol, Jenny, Lucy, and Peter” and all of his livestock and household furniture to his son Joseph for £150. 
On 3 Feb. 1773 Joseph purchased from Watson another 360 acres on the “main road” described as land where Nicholas Quesenbury was then living and keeping an ordinary,  which Amelia County had licensed him to keep an ordinary at his home 24 Jan. 1771.  Anne relinquished her dower right 30 March 1778. 
Joseph bought 12 acres from William Watson for £6 on 27 March 1777, 50 acres on the north side of the “great road” £103 on 21 Jan. 1778, 40 acres on the south side of the “great road” from Charles Stuart for £100 29 May 1778, and 44 more acres from Watson for £44 28 Aug. 1783. 
On 17 Nov. 1778 Joseph bought 208 acres in Amelia County on both sides of West Creek from the estate of Richard Tunstall of King and Queen County for £139.47,  100 acres of which he deeded to Bernard Dickerson for £100 27 May 1779.  The remainder of this tract is likely where Joseph established an ordinary that gave its name to the present town of Jennings Ordinary, which is on West Creek.
On 25 Nov. 1779 Joseph bought from his nephew Christopher Robertson a neighboring 170 acres,  which was part of the 200-acre Jennings plantation that Joseph had sold to Samuel Thompson Jr. in 1774, which Christopher was selling to comply with Samuel’s will.
In Sept. 1793 Joseph Jennings Sr. gave a power of attorney to David Gwinn Talbot to settle accounts with the legatees of Samuel Thompson. 
Nottoway County renewed his license to keep an ordinary at Jennings Ordinary in June 1749, with James Cook surety on the license. 

Joseph makes his will
Joseph’s will of 18 Oct. 1803 identified his children as Mary Oliver, Ann Jennings, Langley B. Jennings, Martha Talbot, wife of David G. Talbot, Sarah Camp, Elizabeth Hall, and Jenny and Armon Jennings. He mentioned a plantation 5 miles below where he lived called “Fergusons.” Executors besides his wife were Langley Billups Jennings, James Dupuy, Littleberry Royall, John Billups of Lunenburg County, Abraham Hatchett, and Philip Dunnavant Jr. 
Joseph died in 1804. On 24 March 1812 the heirs of Joseph and Anne Jennings agreed to submit to arbitration a dispute among themselves. Named were Mary Oliver, William Flournoy and Nancy, his wife, Langley B. Jennings, David G. Talbot and Martha, his wife, of Campbell County, James Camp and Sally, his wife, of Spartanburg, S.C., John Hall and Elizabeth, his wife, of Union District, S.C., Jane Jennings of Nottoway County, and Robert Billups and Lucy Armon, his wife, of Halifax County. 
They finally recorded Joseph’s will in Feb. 1815. But in March 1817 the heirs again appeared in court: James and Sarah Camp, Robert Billups, David G. and Martha Talbot, John and Elizabeth Hall, William and Ann Flournoy, and Mary Oliver. 
By 1831, heirs were Sarah Camp, William and Ann Flournoy, Mary Oliver, David G. and Martha Talbott, John and Elizabeth Hall, and Armon and Robert B. Billups. 

Descendants of Capt. Joseph Jennings
Information about the children of Capt. Joseph Jennings, their descendants, and allied families previously found at is now available as Southside Virginia Genealogies. Learn more 
Names found in this topic include the following.
 Sarah (Jennings) Camp,  
James Camp,  
 Mary (Jennings) Oliver (1768-1826),  
Richard Oliver,   
 Anne (Jennings) Jennings Flournoy (c.1769-1835),  
Cuffe Joe Jennings,  Dr. William Flournoy,  
William Billups Jennings Flournoy,  Ann Bates,  
Richard C. Byrd,  
 Langley Billups Jennings (1772-1843),  
Mary Cook,   
Mary Jane Jennings,  Nathaniel Bass,  J.T. Hardesty,  
Sarah Amanda Jennings,  
Eliza C. Jennings,  James Jennings,   
William H. Jennings,  
Frances Jennings,  Benjamin Hammock,  
Creed Jennings,  Sarah Warren Bailey,  
Susan Elizabeth Jennings,  
Ann Billups Jennings,  Dr. Elias Beall,  
Joseph Billups Jennings,  Flora Ann Lindsay,  
 Martha (Jennings) Talbot,  
David Gwinn Talbot,  Charles Talbot,  Drusilla Gwinn,  David Gwinn,  
 Elizabeth (Jennings) Hall,  
John Hall,  
 Jane Jennings,  
Packard Culp,  
 Lucy Ermine (Jennings) Billups,  
Robert B. Billups,  

This family topic includes the following notable individuals.
Soldiers of colonial and American wars
Joseph Jennings - Revolutionary War David Gwinn Talbot - Revolutionary War

Governors - colonial, territorial, and state
Richard C. Byrd - Arkansas  

Legislators - colonial and state
Richard C. Byrd - Arkansas David Gwinn Talbot - Virginia

Names on the map
Jennings Ordinary, Nottoway County, Virginia, named for Joseph Jennings  

This topic, which represents .09% of all the family history material at, includes 51 citations and the names of 60 individuals.
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