Here, gathered in our beloved South Dakota, are a few members of our Williamson / Mattson Clan. Charles and Luella are to be blamed (be kind, they didn't know what they were doing). We're generally a happy bunch and somewhat intelligent (notwithstanding our tenuous grasp on reality). I'm also proud to say that most of us still have our teeth.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

A Description of The Early Williamsons of Virginia

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Hello Williamsons!
It has been several weeks since my last historical post on the Williamson line and for that I do apologize. My cousin Angie Mattson has been tireless in her research on my Grandmother Violet's family line (Pierce) and overwhelmed me with pictures and facts. With much of that now posted for our Pierce cousins, I am ready to turn my attention to the Williamson line once again.

You'll remember my post from some months ago detailing my strong belief that we are descended from Cuthbert Williamson of Virginia and therefore the Virginia line of Williamsons. You'll also remember my supporting evidence from the census' of that period. Given that evidence, I feel confident in posting this information on what I consider our Williamson history in Virginia. Please note that the following is a history compiled by the descendants of Cuthbert Williamson. It was written in the late 1800's. I've included the preface (in green) to explain in more detail what you about to read.

As you read this account of our Williamson family please note the red highlighted sections. I find those very interesting. You will also find a few of my personal comments in blue. And, as always, thank you for reading and celebrating the rich history of our Williamson family.


Submitters Note: The following text is verbatim from an original document in my possession. The document is not dated, but seems to have been typed in the late 1890’s timeframe. Most of the people performing the research were grandchildren or great-grandchildren of Cuthbert Williamson (married 1st Price, 2nd White). Therefore, while not many sources are listed, there should be considerable merit in the report.




About two years ago some of us commenced investigating the history of the Williamson family. At that time we knew but little as to the family, except that our great grandfather was named Cuthbert Williamson and lived and died in Charlotte County, Va., near Rough Creek.

While we have not found out all that we had hoped to, still we have been amply repaid for our trouble in what we have learned, and are, we think, on the road to certain additional facts of great interest.

Cuthbert Williamson was born near Richmond, Va., about 1740, and in 1765 purchased land in Charlotte County, at which time it is supposed he moved either to that County, or to Prince Edward. His first wife is thought to have been Miss Price. He had three children by his first marriage, John, Rebecca and Elizabeth. His second wife was a Miss White, and by this wife he had the following children:- Charles, Mary, Martha, Nancy, Samuel, Cuthbert, Susan, Kate Francis, William B., Daniel M., Matthew and Sallie; Kate died young, unmarried; Sallie died when a child. (Remember, our GGG Grandfather George Matthew Williamson's father was named Matthew. According to this history all two of Cuthbert's 16 children married and had families. Kate and Sallie died as children )

As parties have been appointed to get up information as to each of the children of Cuthbert Williamson, I shall not take any one of his children, but will speak in a general way of what I have found out as to the early settlement of Williamsons in Virginia, and some of the peculiar traits and characteristics of the family. The family at an early date of this country was what might be termed a stony, rugged type of men, low in stature, square built, broad shoulders, black hair, heavy beard, short, thick hands and feet; gray or blue eyes, erect in carriage and long heads. They are self-reliant and unyielding in their opinions and convictions; careful not to give an insult or offense, but never disposed to submit to wrong or injustice, and ready to take their chances in the world. (I'm fascinated by this physical description of our ancestors. Remind you of any in the family today?)

Few of them have accumulated much property, but it is a rare thing to find one of them, who has not the comforts of life around him, and who does not enjoy extending hospitality to his friends and kin.

They are industrious and economical in their habits; great lovers of home and family, and by nature self-reliant. I have never found or heard of one of them being in the poor-house, or jail, except when put there by the Yankees; nor are there any millionaires in the family. (My father is a complete work a holic. I am the same. Is this a trait amoung other Williamsons today?)

I have never seen or heard of a red-headed Williamson, and with the older generations, no good fiddlers or dancers; although some of them have made an effort at tripping the "Light Fantastic Toe." (No red headed Williamsons? I'm sure that's no longer the case. Remember, this was written in the late 1800's)

The old Williamson type has been transmitted from generation to generation in the men with remarkableness, so much so, that a Williamson is easily distinguished in a crowd. They are a long-lived people, many of them reaching to over eighty years. But few, if any bald-headed ones, but the men’s hair turn gray early, as evidenced by that of the writer.

When it is remembered that our Cuthbert Williamson had sixteen children, and it has been one hundred and thirty-two years since the first child was born, and fourteen of them were married, and they have very nearly all faithfully kept the Bible injunction to multiply and replenish the earth, a splendid example being set by their ancestor, you will see what a large crop has been raised. In nearly every State in the South and a few in the North, are the descendants of Cuthbert Williamson found, but Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Missouri, Alabama and Texas contain the great bulk of them.

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