Hampshire Pedigree

Hampshire County Pedigree

Hampshire county has an interesting pedigree. Of course, so does much of West Virginia!

Reciting this pedigree begins to sound like the commercial where the fast-talking spokesman shoves 60 seconds of speech into a 15 second spot, but here we go ---

In 1603, when the first English settlers arrived at Jamestown, Hampshire county was Indian ... Shawnee, Mingo, Tuskarora, a few Huron, a few Cherokee ... hunting grounds.

It successively became:

Hampshire county then subdivided into Morgan (1820) which was actually part of Hampshire and part of Berkeley county, Mineral (1866), Grant (1866) and Hardy (1785) counties.

Meanwhile, Hampshire county moved from VA to WV in 1862.

The moral of this tale is, if you find your man named in the right time period anywhere in Virginia, you need to check the actual physical location of the place. A land grant in what is now Hampshire county might very well show up in a list of Old Rappannock or Spotsylvania county deeds, apparently miles removed from Hampshire county. In the past there was apparently no uniform way of citing a source; thus some books will say "bought land in Hampshire County in 1730" or "was living in Hampshire County in 1818" when in point of fact in 1730 the land was technically in Frederick county and in 1820 the land ended up in Morgan county. This too may affect your search pattern.

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© 1996 Cheryl Singhal; All Rights Reserved

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