Martin Dawson 1954 Newspaper Article

My previous post seems to have aroused some interest in Martin Dawson (1772-1835) the younger brother of our Susannah Dawson Adams. While considerable information can be found online about Martin and his famous 1835 Will, there is little about what actually came to pass.

A 1970 self-published 41 page Dawson history by Mary Roy Edwards and available only at the Albemarle County Historical Society contained a 1954 newspaper article on what actually resulted from Martin's good intentions.

I have prepared a PDF of that article for others to enjoy:

Martin Dawson 1954 newspaper article

Most of the Dawson family wills exist from Martin's era. Unfortunately, this Dawson family continued to use the same given names generation after generation, making it difficult to zero in on an exact ancestor.

1837 Albemarle Court Source Of Our Adams Connection

After months of looking we have finally located the 1837 Albemarle Circuit Court source which listed our ten Adams' children. It was found in the Chancery Order Book 1, page 247, contained in a list of plaintiffs for Dawson vs. Dawson case #178, October 14, 1837. The case concerns portions of Martin Dawson's 1835 Will which have not been completed. These involved freeing his slaves, disposition of his Bel Air estate, and extensive donations to the University of Virginia.

In this case Susannah Dawson Adams was deceased by 1835 so her children were listed as plaintiffs:

“... James Adams, Pleasant Adams, William Adams, Benjamin Adams, Martin Adams, Sally Adams, Lynch Adams, Dawson Adams, Elizabeth Adams, and Henry D. Adams only heirs at law and distributees of Susan Adams deceased, formerly Susan Dawson ...”

1837 Albemarle Chancery Court Order Book 1 - page 247

This court record validates our Missouri Adams families as Richard Adams and Susannah Dawson's children. As further proof, a living Adams descendant of our Missouri group recently matched Y-DNA with three Georgia descendants of our Virginia progenitor, Robert Adams of Goochland (1680-1740).

This has opened up a wonderful Virginia family for many Adams researchers.

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