Descendants of C D Bradford


Charles Darnell Bradford & Mary Lemon

Progenitors of the Gwinnett County, Georgia Bradfords

Written by Diane Carrington Bradford
(Mrs. W. H. Bradford)
[W. H. Bradford (1929-SL)]

Webmaster of Leaves From Our Tree and married for 49 years to a direct descendant of Rev. Joshua Bradford, a Gwinnett County “First Family” pioneer settler, Diane Carrington Bradford is a 4th great granddaughter of Major General Allen Daniel, the namesake of Gwinnett County’s historic Fort Daniel, built in the Hog Mountain area in 1813 and now an historic archaeological site owned today by Gwinnett County and leased to the Ft. Daniel Foundation to be operated as an educational park and museum.”

This article was researched and documented in accordance
with the elements of the "Genealogical Proof Standard" [GPS]
developed by the Board for Certification of Genealogists.

In his Revolutionary War Pension Application, dated Nov 20th 1818, Charles Darnell BRADFORD stated that he was born in Maryland and was "now about 83 years of age," which indicated a birth year of circa 1735-36. Little is known about where Charles Darnell BRADFORD spent his formative years, but a few clues may be gleaned from a copy of a letter written by Mrs. Mose Hill Mobley, AKA Emily Alice (McCrorey) Mobley. Her mother was Margaret or Mattie [???] Hawthorne. Emily was born in 1864. She stated in her letter that "The Hawthornes lived near what was called the old Institution [officially the Monticello Jefferson Academy] in Fairfield Co. Their family connections were Bradfords, Winns, & Gibsons, who lived near the Kincaid Bridge over Little River. Mrs. McCrorey (Mattie Hawthorne) remembered hearing her grandmother, Mrs. Bradford and Mrs. Winn tell how they would have to leave their homes at night and hide from the Tories during the Revolutionary War."

Mrs. Mobley's letter also provided the strongest clues found to date about his possible parentage by her statment that "Charles Darnell Bradford was a nephew of Charles D. Carroll of Carrollton Co., Md., who was one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the U. S." She also stated that "Charles Bradford was named for two uncles. He was educated by this [Carroll] Uncle." His education stood him well when he moved to Fairfield Co., during his military service and throughout his life. His actual parentage is as yet undocumented. While some researchers believe he might have been a descendant of John BRADFORD, a merchant and large landowner, who immigrated to Baltimore County, Maryland, before 1668, other researchers believe his middle name indicated a possible relationship to John BRADFORD, II, and Anne DARNELL, but neither of these theories has been proved or disproved. There are several other, less obvious connections between Bradford males and Darnall females still to be investigated.

Fortunately, a documented descendant of Charles Darnell BRADFORD has participated in the BRADFORD Y-DNA Project (kit #20877), and to date has one participant match, also one of Charles' descendants. Hopefully, a documented descendant of one of the BRADFORD families of Maryland will join the DNA project. It would be interesting to see which Maryland BRADFORD line kit #20877 would match.

By the early 1760s Charles Bradford was in Frederick County, Virginia. While residing there he met and married Mary Lemon, daughter of James Lemon of Winchester, Frederick County, Virginia. James was listed on county records as a head of household in 1757 and 1762. The marriage of Charles and Mary was documented in a Power of Attorney recorded in Fairfield County, SC, [Deed Book N, p 539-40 and dated 24 Jul 1802].


To all people to whom these presents shall come, we Charles Darnel [sic] Bradford of Fairfield District in the State aforesaid Schoolmaster and Mary Bradford of the same place send greeting. Whereas James Leamon [sic], dec'd, late of the town of Winnsborough* in State of Virginia by his last will and testament did give, devise and bequeath a certain Lease.and Lott [sic] of land then in his possession and the place of his residence in said town to his beloved daughter Mary Leamon and whereas the said Mary Leamon since intermarried with Charles Darnell Bradford [emphasis added], party to these presents & the said Leamon also since intermarried with [blank space in original] Parries who [blank space in original] moved into said State of South Carolina by which means together with other intervening embarrassments they have hitherto been deprived of the interest and advantage mentioned them by their dec'd parent in his last will & testament. Now know ye that we Charles Darnel Bradford & Mary Bradford for divers good causes and considerations as thereunto accruing have made ordained constituted and appointed & by these presents do make ordain constitute & appoint our beloved Nephew William Leamon Parries of District & State aforesaid our true and lawful attorney for us & in our names & for our use to ask demand sue for & recover & receive of and from the present holders or occupants of the said lott & premises, one undivided parity of the same together with all sum or sums of money which of right ought to be due for our accounts of the rent or use of the same & upon receiving peaceable possession of the said lott and premises for our said attorney to bargain, sell & convey the same for the best price that may be got to any person or persons whomsoever giving & by these presents granting to our said attorney our whole & sole power to persue [sic] all lawful ways & means and to perform & execute all lawful acts deeds & things whatsoever in any wise concerning the premises as fully and amply to all intents & purposes as we ourselves might or would Do were we personally present ratifying holding firm & effective__ whatsoever our attorney shall lawfully do or cause to be done in the premises. In witness whereof the said Charles Darnel Bradford & Mary Bradford have hereunto set their hand & seals the 24th day of July 1802 and in the 26th year of American Independence.

Signed, sealed & delivered}C. D. Bradford (seal)
in the presence of}Mary Bradford (seal)
John Harrison __ Joseph Burton}
[Note: The word "SEAL" beside a name indicated that the person actually signed his/her name, rather than simply "making a mark."]

Fairfield District __ Jonathon Garrison maketh Oath that he saw the within Power of Attorney duly executed and that he with Joseph Burton were Witnesses to the Same
Jon Harison [sic]

Sworn before me 24 July 1802
T W Morris JPRecorded 24th July 1802
[Source: Fairfield County, SC, Deed Book N, p 539-40.]
[Transcribed verbatim by Diane Carrington Bradford, 15 Mar 2007]

* Note: There is no such town in the State of Virginia. However, there is a Winchester, and a James Lemon paid “county clerk fees” there in 1762.

A faded list of early lot-owners in the frontier town of Winchester, Virginia (found in the Archives of Virginia), showed that James Lemon owned lot 30. Lot 2 was also owned by a person named Lemon, whose given name was too faded to read, who might or might not have been James Lemon. Whether either of these lots were the one mentioned in James Lemon's will is unknown. This list enumerated the earliest lots created in Winchester that were sold prior to 1748. [Source: Morton, Frederic, The Story of Winchester in Virginia, the oldest town in the Shenandoah Valley. Strasburg, VA: Shenandoah Publishing House, 1925, page 49. ]

Based on a statement in his 1818 military pension application that he had "been a resident of South Carolina for nearly fifty-five years," Charles, Mary and their first two children moved to South Carolina some time during 1763 and settled in the area then known as Camden District, but became Fairfield District by 1784. However, he may have left behind some unpaid debts as evidenced by the following notice in the official Virginia newspaper on 30 Oct 1766, some three years after Charles and his family migrated south.


"George III, by the grace of God, of Great Britain, France, and Ireland, King, defender of the faith, etc. To the sheriff of Frederick county, greeting: We command you that you summon Philip Bush and Charles Darnall Bradford to appear before our Justices of our General Court, in Chancer, at the Capitol in Williamsburg, on the first day of the next court, to answer a bill in chancery exhibited against them by John and Thomas Kirkpatrick, merchants and partners; and this they will in no wise omit, under the penalty of each 100 l. and have then there this writ. Witness Francis Fauquier, Esq; our Lieutenant Governour, at Williamsburg, the 18th day of October, in the 6th year of our reign." [Source: Virginia Gazette, October 30, 1766, No. 806. Purdie and Dixon, publishers, page 3, Col. 1. URL {

In the 1802 Power of Attorney (above) Charles was identified as a Schoolmaster, which seemed to indicate a connection to the nearby Jefferson Monticello Academy. the focus of the following newspaper article.
Fairfield District, South Carolina
"Delightful talk! to rear the tender thought,
"To teach the young idea how to shoot,
"To pour the fresh instruction o'er the mind."
Whereas, a number of respectable
and spirited citizens, have asociated [sic]
for the purpose of creating an Academy in
this neighbourhood; and to accomplish it,
liberal subscriptions have been made by the
friends of literature.
With pleasure we announce its being
opened since January, for the reception and
instruction of youth by the Rev. James
Rogers. His department includes the
following branches, in which his pupils are
taught in the most simple principles. and by
the most familiar methods attainable in the
present state of improvement, viz. English
Grammer. Geography, Logic, Mathematics. on
the plan of Chales, and the Latin and Greek
languages. A tutor of good abilities will
shortly be ready to open a distinct class
for Reading, Writing and Arithmetic. Every
consideration has been encouraging to this
Institution; we have salubrious air, good water,
rural retirement. where no object presents itself
to attract the attention of Students from their
education; and comfortable boarding to be had
convenient, for seven, ten, or fifteen pounds per
annum as may be chosen. A good dwelling house is
erected contiguous to the Academy for the use of
those who may choose to board themselves. The most
strict attention will be paid to the morals of
youth, and every exertion made to forward a radical
education. The laws of the Academy are lodged with
us for inspection by any, who wish to be informed
of the plan of this seminary. Donations to compleat[sic]
the Library will be gratefully received.
JAMES DAVIS,         }
              WILLIAM CATO,     &    }    Com'rs.
[Source: South Carolina State Gazette (Columbia, SC) Volume: VIII Issue: 423 Page: 4 Date: Friday, June 26, 1801.]

In 1802, a petition to the General Assembly of South Carolina was signed by the "trustees and founders" of the Jefferson-Monticello Academy: James Rogers, C.D. Bradford, Arromanus Liles, E. Lyles, Nathan Cook, George Reddish, Charnel Durham, Burrell Cook, Joshua Durham, Philip Raiford, Benjamin May, Charles MtGomery, P. Edw. Pearson, Phil Pearson, James Davis. [Source: McMaster, Fitz Hugh, 1867-, History of Fairfield County, South Carolina : from "before the white man came" to 1942, Spartanburg, South Carolina : Reprint Co. Publishers, 1980. p62.]

Still standing nearby today is "The Monticello Store and Post unusually intact example of an antebellum rural store. Stylistically, the building appears to date from the mid-nineteenth century; however, local tradition suggests that it could have been built as early as 1820. It was reportedly owned by the Reverend Jonathan Davis, a prominent minister and state legislator from Fairfield District in the early nineteenth century. According to local tradition the rear portion of the store was used as a dormitory for the Jefferson-Monticello Academy in the 1820s. The building was used as a store and post office after the Civil War until the mid-1960s. The Monticello Store and Post Office is a one-story, frame, weatherboarded, T-shaped building. The front portion of the building has a gable roof with the gable end facing the road. The rear portion has a transverse gable roof. The main feature of the façade is an undercut gallery with a pedimented gable supported by octagonal wooden columns. The façade is sheathed in flushboard with a chair rail and has a double-leaf, center entrance with plain surround flanked by windows with paneled wooden shutters. The roof is wood shingled. Listed in the National Register December 6, 1984." [Source: South Carolina Department of Archives and History Web Site;URL:]

Also located nearby is the current version of the Methodist Church attended by the Bradfords, Kirklands and other local families. "According to a history of Monticello Methodist Church, the building was constructed in 1861 by Jacob Bookman [to replace an earlier, outgrown building]. The church is significant as a very intact example of a mid-nineteenth century rural church building. The interior retains the original pews as well as the former slave gallery along three wall elevations. The church is a one-story, front gable-roofed, weatherboarded frame building in the Greek Revival style with a meeting house floor plan. The façade end of the gable is pedimented with a boxed cornice, plain frieze, and has a semicircular vent in the gable. The portico is supported by octagonal wooden columns on a stepped brick entrance. The façade has three entrance doors topped by Gothic Revival inspired pointed-arched, modern stained glass transom windows. The central entrance also has modern stained glass sidelights above wooden panels. The side elevations have multi-light, shuttered windows. There is a cemetery to the left of the church. Listed in the National Register December 6, 1984." [Source: South Carolina Department of Archives and History Web Site;URL:]

Charles Darnell Bradford was an educated man and records showed that he was active in the affairs of his day, often called upon to witness legal documents, wills, property deeds, etc. He also served on the jury for at least two coroner's inquisitions. Eldest son, John Lemon Bradford, who served in the South Carolina Militia along with his father during the Revolution, could also read and write as documented by his pension application dated 22 Nov 1829 and other papers in his military file. Second son,Charles Bradford, Sr., also was educated as evidenced by a Petition for Guardianship of his minor son Francis filed 23 Feb 1822 in Fairfield District Court of Equity. Whether or not Charles and Mary Bradford's other seven children, 3 girls and 4 boys, were educated remains unknown.

Also unknown are the burial sites of Charles, Mary, or any of their family who remained in Fairfield County. No Bradfords were buried in the Monticello Methodist Church Cemetery or any other public cemetery. It is possible that there was a family cemetery on the Bradford home place in the Monticello community that over the decades was neglected by unrelated and uncaring land owners, leaving no markers or other visible indications of any graves. Therefore they were overlooked in more recent times when county officials approved the creation of the Monticello Reservoir, while graves in known private burial grounds were by law disinterred and moved to other cemeteries out of the area to be covered by water. Built in 1978, the main lake is approx. 6,800 acres.The sub impoundment, also called Monticello Recreation lake is about 300 acres.The main lake and rec. lake is divided by a dike at the north end of the main lake and is also where hwy 99 crosses the lake. Monticello was built to be used as a cooling pond for the Virgil C Summer Nuclear Plant. This is not a popular lake for visitors, but it is famous to locals for its phenomenal catfishing. Fishing is only allowed on Wednesdays and Saturdays, but it is possible to go swimming seven days a week.


Charles Darnell Bradford, Private to Deputy Quartermaster General to Condemned Prisoner

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