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TO CAROLINA FAMILY ROOTS. Thanks for reading and commenting about my blog postings. My goal is to accurately document the genealogy of my family and allied families living in Chesterfield County, SC and Anson County, NC. If you have a Chesterfield County surname you are interested in please send me an e-mail.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Mary, David and Sarah –Oh No!! Another Brick Wall

Pin It David W. Graves is my 3rd great Grandfather if he is the father of Sarah Jane Graves and William Thomas Graves. There is conflicting information on David’s birth date thus his age.  He died 21 November 1898 in Chesterfield County, South Carolina. David W. Graves’s tombstone in the Old St. Mary's Presbyterian Church Cemetery[1] records his birth as Jan 22, 1812.[2]


David married Mary Ann Gulledge about 1872 in Chesterfield County, SC. She was the daughter of Daniel Gulledge and Jane Henderson. Mary Ann was born on 15 May 1842.

In 1872 when it is believe that David W. and Mary Ann were married; David was 60 years old and Mary Ann was 30 years of age.  

Do you believe that David W. Graves lived to be 60 years of age before he found a young lady that would agree to marry him? I don’t either.

Now, In 1850 David is enumerated with an older lady whom I believe is his mother – Mary Graves.[3]

1850 CENSUS: Chesterfield County, South Carolina, Roll: M432_851; Image: 216, Film #0444814, Page 106A, Line 8, Dwelling 110, Family 110;
Mary GRAVES, age 55, born in SC; birth year = 1795.
David W. GRAVES, age 32, Tailor, born in SC;
Sarah J. GRAVES, age 16, born in SC and
Thomas GRAVES, age 14, born in SC.

The first problem with this listing is that it does not support the birth date on David W. Graves’s tombstone. If he was 32 in 1850 then his birth year would be 1818 maybe dropping about 6 years from his actual age. His military Service record indicates he was 40 year of age when he enlisted into the Civil War on 25 August 1861.[4]

The other question I have about this listing is the family composition.  Records before the Civil War are few and far in between in Chesterfield County.  Based on actual practice for this time I think it unlikely that David W. Graves’s first marriage took place when he was 60 years of age. Therefore, I believe this Census listing is a listing of two families:

Mary Graves[5], age 55; Mother of David W. and grandmother to the two younger children.
                David W. Graves, age 32 or 38,
                                Sarah Jane Graves, granddaughter, age 16, b. 1834
                                William Thomas Graves, grandson, age 14, born in 1836

That would imply an unknown Wife and a marriage year around 1832/1833 for David W. Graves.

This is another one of my recurring “brick walls.”
I wrote a lengthy article back in 2008 on this line that can be viewed here:

Scroll down to the section about mid page and see the section entitled:


I would greatly appreciate your feedback on this family.


  •         Do you that Mary is the Mother of the others in the household?


  •         Do you think the younger children may be grandchildren?


  •         Any other feedback you care to make.

Thank you for reading my blog and for your comments.















[1] James C. Pigg, Chesterfield County Cemetery Survey; Self-Published, 1995, page 943. Tombstone of David W. GRAVES; 22 January 1812–21 November 1898, Old St. Mary's Presbyterian Church Cemetery, Chesterfield, Chesterfield County, South Carolina.
[2] Jim Tipton, Find A Grave, digital image, http://www.findagrave.com; Headstone for David W. Graves; (22 January 1812–21 November 1898); Memorial # 47922854; Record of the Saint Mary’s Presbyterian Church Cemetery (old); Patrick, Chesterfield County, South Carolina, USA; Accessed on 1 January 2008.
[3] 1850 U. S. Census, Chesterfield County, South Carolina, population schedule, Chesterfield County, South Carolina, Page 106A, Line 8, Dwelling 110, Family 110, Household of Mary GRAVES; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : viewed 20 November 2011); citing National Archives Microfilm M432 Roll 851.
[4] http://www.fold3.com/image/#20|77197010
[5] 1860 U. S. Census, Chesterfield County, South Carolina, population schedule, Chesterfield County, South Carolina, Page 171A, Line 6, Dwelling 1083, Family 1081, Household of Mary GRAVES; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : viewed 20 November 2011); citing National Archives Microfilm M653-1217.

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