Biographical Sketch of Daniel Faulkner and Nancy Dunlap Faulkner, paternal 5th great-grandparents

In preparation for my trip to Gallia County, Ohio in three weeks time, I wanted to get a jump start and do a post about a set of paternal 5th great-grandparents. For lack of a better phrase, I have been slightly obsessed with researching this line in my tree. Part of me isn’t really sure why, the other part of me thinks it has to do with the fact that some of the local newspapers in a neighboring county had historical memoirs of old settlers and this family was mentioned quite a bit, in detail. It is rare the editor of a newspaper in the 1870s and 1880s would reminisce fondly about original families to the area, but as my research has shown, many of these families married into one another and were neighbors for several decades, including the editor’s family who were neighbors to my great-grandparents in the early 1800s.

My introduction starts with my 5th great-grandfather, Daniel Faulkner, who was born on November 12, 1759 in Ireland, though I suspect he was of Scottish decent, and was part of a wave of Scotch-Irish to the colonies sometime during or after the American Revolution. I have not found any immigration records for him, though I have not taken the time to focus any research on that part of his timeline.

Daniel married Nancy Agnes Dunlap, though when and where is a mystery. Nancy was born March 13, 1769 in Campbeltown, Scotland, the daughter of John and Nancy Isobel Colvin Dunlap. The Dunlap family settled in Augusta County, Virginia in the late 1770s or early 1780s and it is assumed they married in Augusta County, but no marriage record has been discovered. Nancy’s tombstone says ‘Nancy, wife of Daniel’, and a history of Gallia County written in the 1880s references her as Nancy Dunlap. They likely got married between 1790 and 1794 as their first child was born sometime in the early 1790s.

Daniel first appears in an 1801 Kanawha County, Virginia (now West Virginia) tax list. In the household there is 1 white male over 16 and he owns 2 horses. He appears again in 1802, but as Daniel Fortner. Recently, I discovered on FamilySearch, personal property tax records from Mason County, Virginia (now West Virginia) where Daniel is listed in 1805, 1807, and 1809. The reasons for the missing tax lists is just that, they are missing, but this shows that he was in the area paying taxes for at least 4 or more years in Mason County.

Daniel first appears in Gallia County tax records in 1811, where it’s recorded that he was ordered to collect wolf scalps (yes you read that right, that was one way to pay taxes back in the day…I haven’t studied it enough but just know those kind of bounties come up during this time period). By 1812, he is listed in Madison Township, Gallia County, Ohio, and this snippet is one of the first pieces of information I came across when searching

“In the year 1812 Daniel Faulkner came from Big Kanawha and built a cabin on the Black Fork of Symmes Creek, near the southern part of the present limits of the county. Mr. Faulkner was a native of Ireland, and was a weaver by trade. He loved his dram and was full of fun. In the year 1813 he built the first mill that was ever built in the county. He erected a rude dam across the Black Fork, and put in a tub wheel, and started one run of small stones, which served to grind corn during a short time, when the water was neither too high nor two low. His mill had no bolt and did not grind wheat.” –D. Mackley, “Notes on Jackson County,” The Jackson County Standard, Jackson, Ohio, 20 January 1876, p 3.

Daniel and Nancy will have ten children, 6 girls and 4 boys. Of the ten, I only know the birthdates or years for some, as census records tend to be all over the place with birth years, and birth records were not recorded. Their current birth order is: John, Margaret, Andrew, James, Nancy, Virginia, Isabella, Anna, William and Sarah.

A page from Daniel Faulkner’s will, naming his children and their spouses. My 4th great grandmother, Anna Faulkner, is highlighted in yellow next to her husband, Reuben Wesley Crigler.

Nancy Faulkner will pass away on February 4, 1833 and Daniel passes away July 12, 1838, respectively. It is from their headstones that I get their birthdates. The land they they lived on is currently farm land and was disturbed over the last several decades. A descendant of the Faulkner’s found the cemetery and the headstones of Daniel and Nancy and some of their grandchildren. It was noted on Daniel’s FindAGrave page that the headstones were removed to CM Cemetery in Oak Hill to be placed by descendants. I was recently able to confirm this with the help of an Eagle Scout whose project is to record all the graves, GPS them, and place them on FindAGrave.

While this is not the whole story or all the information I have on Daniel and Nancy Faulkner, it provides the basis of their history and I plan on writing more specifically on different aspects of their lives and some of the children’s lives once I visit Gallia and Jackson Counties at the end of the month. If you read this and find that you have ancestors from the same area, or that we might be related, please reach out and we can share research. I look forward to sharing more info on the Faulkner’s in the coming weeks.

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