The Sanders of Stafford, Fairfax, and
Loudoun Counties in Virginia
by Jim Sanders

A 1751 map of Virginia. Fairfax County is south of the Potomac, across the border from Maryland.                

Jim Sanders
Ojai, CA  93023
July 2009

This paper is a continuing effort to determine the progenitor of Francis Sanders and his proven brothers, the Reverend Moses Sanders, William Aaron and Isaac. The search has taken this researcher whose direct line ancestor is Francis Sanders, from the oral family history passed down from my grandfather, through my father, Merle Sanders to me, James Michael Sanders. 

My great Grandfather, James Henry Sanders, was born on January 14, 1849 in Jefferson County, Illinois.  He was the second son of Theophilus Sanders. In 1878 James Henry traveled, by covered wagon, from Illinois to Hardscrabble, Colorado. James and his family left Colorado in 1884 and moved east to Allen County, Kansas and then Bates County, Missouri and from there to Iola, Kansas where he spent the last quarter century of his life in that small farming community. James Henry died in 1930. His father, Theophilus, was born in 1814, probably in Franklin County, Tennessee. He was a son of Silas Sanders, who was born about 1785 in Wilkes County, NC. Silas was the son of Francis Sanders whom we now believe was born in Virginia circa 1755. We have designated Francis, the father of Silas, as Hunting Creek Francis of Wilkes County, NC 1778. 

Reviewing the work herein will demonstrate a strong possibility that Hunting Creek Francis Sanders and his siblings were born in Fairfax County, Virginia.The information discovered in our review of original recorded documents containing the name Sanders/Saunders, is incorporated within the body of this work. We did not “pick and choose” in order to substantiate any preconceived theories. 

Some documents reviewed, containing no information other than the Sanders name, did not “advance the search” and were not memorialized. The search for the father of Francis and his brothers has been a  six year trek that taken us through several counties in the states of Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina and, at this point in time, to Loudoun, Fairfax and Stafford County, Virginia.

This accumulation of recorded information and the theories derived thereon would not have been attempted with out the encouragement and guidance of Gary Sanders from Denton, Texas. Gary, in my humblest of opinions, is the flag-bearer when it comes to analyzing postulations and theories presented by others, of our ancestor’s connections. Hopefully his continued clear thinking will provide connections or interpretations to further our understanding of lineage.

In 1749 the Reverend Charles Green, an Anglican minister, compiled a list of tithables living within the area that is now Fairfax and Loudoun Counties. Among the tithables on Reverend Green’s list are seven men with the surname Sanders: Lewis, Daniel and Fra Sanders, whom we believe are of the Lewis Sanders Line (Fra is designated as a Quaker) and Tho, Ja and Wm of the Tuscarora Line (so called, as it was the location of a 1761 Lease to James Sanders, who married Sarah Gunnell). There is one Sanders man whose name the transcriber of Reverend Green’s list could not identify.

It was the discovery of the Reverend Green’s work that brought us to the records of Fairfax County, Virginia. By statute, persons of the age sixteen or older were tithable and noted on the Reverend Green's List.  His comments, in some cases, included religious affiliation or position within the community. Tithes are explained fully at this link:

Essentially, our research concluded that the seven Sanders men noted in Reverend Green’s list fall into two seemingly distinctive Sanders families: the Lewis Sanders line and the James/William Sanders line.
By review of the Tax/Tithe Lists of Loudoun and noticing in which districts the Sanders are enumerated, we can provide additional clues as to familial relationships. There are most certainly many missing pages of these lists.  Although a pattern of relationships will emerge, it is impossible to definitely state actual relationships.
A person can be taxed as a “poll” at sixteen years of age, however; legally he is unable to own property until age twenty-one.

After countless hours of research, it is our belief that the Sanders men, noted on the Tithe Lists of Loudoun 1758-1771, who have not acquired an ownership interest in real property, are probably the sons and nephews of the first generation of Sanders who are found on the 1749 List of Tithables.

The first generation: James, William, Lewis and Philip.

Among the second generation: Lewis Jr., Daniel, Francis (Sr.) and Thomas.

Among the third generation Sanders men are: George, Isaac, Aaron, Moses, James and Francis (Jr.). 

To establish even theoretical relationships, one should review all available documents: court orders, leases, grants, tithe and tax Lists.  In addition some weight must be given to oral and written “family traditions”.  Subsequently, a reasonably clear picture of relationships will to emerge.   It is a lengthy process, but relatively simple. 

Our review will show relationships between these Sanders families.  However we wholeheartedly profess that without the existence of a document stating a true relationship, no matter how many bits and pieces of circumstantial evidence are present. The end result of our research will still be a guess!

When we state a Sanders may be brother, he may in fact be a cousin or uncle living in the same household. There appears to have been two separate branches of the Sanders Family in Stafford, Fairfax and Loudoun Counties. However by discovering the close proximity of the family’s holdings and examining the given names within both families one can make the argument that they may, in fact, be may be more closely related than previously thought.

DNA Testing:

By comparing recent DNA test results of several Sanders men and comparing the results with the “paper trails” of their research, this researcher believes the Lewis Sanders line of Stafford, Fairfax and Loudoun Counties, Virginia are quite possibly the progenitors of the closely matched DNA test participants: Jim Sanders, Gary Sanders, Justin Sanders, Chuck Sanders, Glen Sanders and several others. Justin Sanders is the administrator of the Sanders DNA list and is probably one's best bet if seeking clarification on DNA test results. 

The paper trail of Sanders descendant Bob Sanders traces to William Sanders who appears in Fairfax County, 1742-1761; however, his DNA test results do not match the DNA of the Lewis Sanders Line. Therefore, for now we discount William Sanders as being related to Lewis Sanders. (Refer Gary Sanders and Glen Sanders). 

There are a couple plausible explanations for DNA results not substantiating a connection to ones paper trail: one is man’s age-old nemesis, pre-marital sex; another is infidelity and still another may be erroneous test results. In the many cases of bastardy reviewed in our research, the suspected father does not “step up to the plate” and the mother’s family reared the child. Our review of the Court orders of Fairfax and Loudoun Counties, 1742-1783, reveal just how common children born out of wedlock were: as many as 30- 50 instances of baseborn children were recorded annually. As crass as it may seem, infidelity or bastardy should not be ruled out when paper trails are at odds with DNA.We note the recent disclosure of the Sanders male, who for 70 years thought he was a Rhodes until DNA test results identified him as a Sanders:

Locating the properties of the Sanders Families:

Becoming familiar with the Parish boundaries was of great help in establishing the Sanders holdings. Loudoun County was formed from Fairfax County in 1757. Fairfax was formed from Prince William in 1742, which was formed from Stafford in 1731. The Cameron Parish boundaries were completely within Loudoun County. The northern boundary was the Potomac River; on the south Prince William County (which later became Fauquier); on the east was the Difficult Run; and on the west the Blue Ridge Mountains. In 1770, Shelburne Parish was created from the western part of Cameron and included, generally, the land west of Goose Creek running to the Blue Ridge…" Reference: "Marriages of Loudoun County, 1757-1853" by Mary Alice Wertz:

A review of the book “Fairfax County Road Orders, 1749-1800”, by Beth Mitchell, and close examination of the legal descriptions of the leases and grants, filed in the Library of Virginia, were also extremely helpful in determining the location of the properties of the of the Sanders families.

The Locations of the Sanders holdings:

Thanks to Goggle Maps and Goggle Earth we have located four of five possible Sanders family locations in Fairfax/Loudoun 1742-1773. See Exhibits “A” and “B” at end of the article

The Tuscarora Branch of Sanders were originally located (1742) at the head of  Four Mile Run. In 1761 James and William Sanders sold this property. James then leased a property from Thomson Mason at the conflux of the Tuscarora and Goose Creeks.

William and Philip, possible brothers of James, we will assume, were located nearby.  No documentation has been found to substantiate their locations, although William moved to Frederick County Maryland where he died in 1768.Frederick County is across the River Potomac from Loudoun and was the site of the Menoquesy Meeting House.  Many Quakers moved between the Fairfax and Menoquesy Meeting houses.

The Difficult Run Branch of Sanders with the holdings of Daniel Sanders (1745) and William Sanders Jr in 1764, on the headwaters of the same;

The Beaverdam Branch of Sanders and the holdings of Francis Sanders (1753), near the conflux of the Beaverdam and the North Fork of Goose Creek.

The Lewis Sanders Sr. property, (1728) a 100 acre lease, above Horse Pen Run and the Accotinck, on a plantation of George Mason.

The Lewis Sanders Jr. holdings were adjacent to or nearby the present day George Mason University. Both his properties were on the head waters of the Popes Head and Accotink Creeks.

The distance between the properties of Lewis Sanders Jr and the other Sanders families in Loudoun and Fairfax are as follows:

Daniel and William, of the Difficult Run Branch of the family, are about three miles north west of Lewis Sanders Jr. near Vale.

Francis, the Quaker, was near the mouth of the north fork of Goose Creek and the Beaverdam Branch and was about six or seven miles (in 1761) south of the Tuscarora Branch of Sanders.  Francis was about twenty miles north west of Daniel and William.

Francis Sanders, born 1752, the orphan, lived on the east side of Goose Creek near the Goose Creek ridge.

James, William and presumably Philip, from 1742-1761, are nine miles north east of Lewis Jr. near Falls Church, on the Four Mile Run.

Subsequent to 1761, James and presumably Philip, are located at the mouth of the Tuscarora Branch and Goose Creek, about a mile south east of Leesburg.

Documenting  Lewis Sanders, A School Teacher

Nearly seventy-five percent of the white settlers entering the Virginia were subject to servitude in some form. (“Servitude in modern times” By M. L. Bush.  Google Books). One researcher states that Lewis Sanders was a school teacher. Our research finds the odds are he was an indentured servant, probably a servant to George Mason.We show a connection between George Mason and Lewis Sanders, and although it may be a stretch to theorize that Lewis may have been an indentured servant, it is a possibility that must be considered.

Although many masters craftily figured out ways to extend an indentured servant's bondage (through accusing the servant of stealing, impregnating a female indenture servant, etc.), most indentured servants who survived the first four to seven years in America were freed. The master was required, depending upon the rules of the colony, to provide his former servant with the following: clothing, two hoes, three barrels of corn, and fifty acres of land.

The first record of Lewis Sanders we have found to date is a 1716 Stafford County recording of the will of John West, wherein Lewis Sanders is noted as a witness. We know he had to be at least twenty-one to qualify as witness. Therefore, he must have been born prior to 1695. 

In May of 1680 John West of Stafford County initiated a Power of Attorney for the collection of monies or tobacco, due him, in favor of Captain Martin Scarlett. In the document it states that the document would be binding in Virginia and Maryland.

On November 25, 1679 John Goodman, Martha Neal, Richard Baley (Bailey), Eliz. Baley (Bayley/Bailey were, transported by Lt. Col. John West through a grant of 2500 acres in Accomack County Virginia, between Crooked Creek and Potomac River. Could West have brought Sanders over? In 1673 Richard Bayley is noted as an adjacent land owner of John West. Grant to Rich, Kellum, Lib Of Virginia.

The first attempted English settlement south of Virginia was the Province of Carolina. It was a private venture, financed by a group of English Lords Proprietors, who obtained a Royal Charter to the Carolinas in 1663, hoping that a new colony in the south would become profitable like that of Jamestown. Carolina was not settled until 1670, and even then the first attempt failed because there was no incentive for emigration to the south. However, eventually the Lords combined their remaining capital and financed a settlement mission to the area led by John West.

Stafford County was the parent County of Prince William, Fairfax and Loudoun. In the records of Stafford County dated 1702, we viewed a record, which stated “Merchants William Denton of Charles County Maryland and Jonathon Mathews of London, sent a large cargo of goods and servants to upper Stafford County”. Their local agent, William Peale, died without being paid for a large portion of the cargo and servants.  Denton and Mathews appointed George Mason as their agent to secure whatever payment he could.  FHL Film #003394 Page 203. We will show a connection between George Mason and Lewis Sanders,  and although we know it is a stretch to theorize that Lewis may be one of the servants mentioned in the above petition, it is a clue that must be considered in the absence of any substantial evidence.

The only Sanders family noted in the records of Stafford prior to the 1716 mention of Lewis was the family of Edward Sanders.  In an effort to connect Lewis Sanders to Edward Sanders who was originally from Charles County MD, we viewed the records of Charles County from 1665 to 1715. Although we found that Edward and his family owned property in Stafford County and was in fact a Justice there in 1665, we could not connect him to our Lewis Sanders line.

Betsy French has a copy of the "Henderson Bible containing a loose paper stating that Lewis Sanders was a school teacher.
“A fellow researcher recently sent me this: (2005)
-loose paper in Henderson Sanders' Bible, source unknown:
Lewis SANDERS, born 1680, Scotland, a School Teacher, come [sic] to America in 1706, married Nellie DANIEL.

His son, Daniel, married Ruth NELSON.
His son, Daniel, married Mary ANDERSON
His son, George, married Sarah MONEY
His son, John, married Lucy HUTCHISON”

In 1728 Lewis Sanders received a lease from George Mason containing 100 acres. We have not viewed the 1728 document, but we have viewed several leases originated by Mason during the  1728-1732 time grame, and all were "the lease for lives or years" type document. We would imagine that the 1728 lease to Lewis, when located, would name additional family members.

Lewis transferred the property to Mason's son, George Mason, on 23 June 1750, and therein noted the 1728 lease as well as noting that the property lies "at the head of the Accotinct and above the Horse Pen Run."
We also have not viewed or heard of the Henderson Sanders bible until the Betsy French posting. Her post is the only source we have seen, of the nationality, birth or occupation of Lewis Sanders. As of June 2009, no documentation of the source of the above statements has been located. Loose papers in a bible of James Sanders, 1803, do verify the information regarding George (Sarah Money) the son of Daniel.

There is no mention of Lewis Jr or his wife, in the message posted by Betsy French. However, we found a 1773 record, which names Lewis’ wife as Rosamin. FHL Film 31281. As of June 30th, 2009, some researchers have stated that there may have been three Lewis Sanders between the years 1716 and 1761.  We think there were only two.  Some have said the first Lewis was born in 1680, but we find no documentation to prove this.

In 1781 Lewis is involved in a property line dispute with Colonel Fizhugh and the resulting survey and plat map notes the two dwelling houses of Lewis Sanders: the old house of Lewis Senior and the present dwelling of Lewis Jr. Also in the above mentioned, case Benjamin is named as a son of Lewis. We belive this Lewis is Lewis Jr. (1749). FHL fiche, noting page 122/123 of the Survey.

Note added by Jim Sanders, December 2015: 

Fairfax County reseacher Debbie Robison obtained a copy of the 1781 survey. Within the survey notes was the notation of a school house in the field of Lewis Sanders. The school house is depicted as lying betweent he old Sanders house and the present (1781) house of Lewis Sanders. This would lend some credibility as to the statement that Lewis Sanders was a school teachers as stated in the Henderson Bible.   

Notes added December 2015 from email sent by Debbie Robison:  

The 1773 deed from  Sanders to Clark--note that Sanders signed with "his mark." So what does this mean? His father was a schoolteacher, there was a school on his property, yet he couldn't sign his name? Puzzling.

Lewis Sanders' grant of 98 acres that he received in 1749 was located adjacent to O'Daniel show on the attached where the words City of Fairfax are written. This is interesting because of the maiden name of Lewis Sanders Sr. 

Lewis Sanders' grant of 235 acres was adjacent and to the south of his first grant. That big tract of land in the lower right corner of the attached is the huge Ravensworth tract owned by Fitzhugh. So you can see that Sanders bordered Fitzhugh on the northwest corner of Ravensworth. The boundary dispute in the court case for which the survey plat was prepared (and where the houses and school house were located) involved land in this corner.

Lewis Sanders also obtained a grant for 410 acres in 1780, but I need to check to see if he was re-granting land he already had. I think this is the case. 

You'll see that George Mason had a grant that bordered Sanders' 1749 grant to the northwest. It would be good bet that Lewis Sanders Sr's lease was on this Mason property. 

The Daniel Sanders land grant was located where you see 401 on the attached in the upper-left corner. The parcel adjoining to the northwest is Fox.

As we ponder these thoughts and review recorded information, questions naturally arise: if Lewis was born in 1680, as one researcher has posted, without documentation, and married in 1706, we should find “possible” offspring of Lewis documented between the years 1722-1738. We do not.  There are no possible offspring evidenced until the 1739 recordings.

Between 1739 and 1749 we can extrapolate data from recordings noting, “unstated” but possible male children of Lewis Sanders. We can also make educated "guestimations" as to their ages. The theory has been that one son, Daniel was born circa 1723; however he may have been born circa 1711-1720. Unfortunately, 1739 is the earliest recording we have found, noting the possible sons of Lewis.

The Ellioner Sanders Will:

Some researchers believe Elinor Vilett to be the wife of Lewis Senior and therefore the mother of Daniel and Lewis Junior and Francis.  Here are our thoughts:

On 27 November 1739 at Prince William Co., VA, Richard Osborn, William Payne and John Manley appraise the estate of Ellioner Sanders (Eleanor Sanders). Her will identifies 5 daughters: Elinor Vilett; Margaret Hyde; Elizabeth Hairs; Mary Sanders and Jemimy Elder.  One son, Hundley Elder. Her Husband, ----- Sanders? Has either died or moved on. Is her daughter Mary married to a man named Sanders? Are her other daughter’s identified by their married names? Is it possible that her daughter, Elinor, married a Lewis Sanders?   

Reasons to doubt she was the wife of Lewis Senior of Stafford-Fairfax:
1) Nothing in the will  states that Lewis is her husband.
2) Her will does not identify a son named  with the surname ofSanders.
3) We are fairly certain Lewis was the father of at least three men born prior to her will and would have still been under their mother’s tutelage at the time of Ellioner’s will.

Several mentions of Edward Sanders and his sons note that he owned property in both Stafford County, Virginia and Charles County, Maryland. He is known to have owned a Mill in Stafford County, on the “Aquakick” Creek as early as 1669. In 1665 we find record of Edward Saunders being a justice in Stafford County. In 1669 Edward Sanders is noted as having a Mill, on the Southwest side of Aquia Creek, adjacent George Mason.
(Refer. Various Northern Neck Patents).
Edward and John Sanders and his son Matthew are of record as being in Charles County, Maryland in the early 1660’s. The name Matthew is very prevalent in this line of Sanders. And a Mathew Sanders is noted twice in the records of Westmoreland County, once in 1709 and again in 1711. His wife’s name is Ellenor.
In June 1722 John Sanders of Charles County, dies and  Elender Sanders is named as his nearest relation. We also find this Sanders family in the 1733 and 1735 Tax List of Charles County. The given names of Eleanor and Mathew are among the named in 1733. In 1735 Eleanor is not named!.
We have viewed a record dated July 1758 in where Elinor and Edward Violet were witnesses for the Parish of Truro against Joseph Cash.  No other information is given therein. Fairfax Order Book D FHL Film # 0031322. Is this 1739 Ellioner Sanders’ Daughter, Elinor?
It is possible that Eleanor is the same person as the Elinor Violet. Or she may be a daughter of Mathew. As stated, this line of Sanders was somewhat transitory and located in all areas of our search.

It further appears that the Edward Sanders family was of English descent and were well connected to the Gentry. Quite the opposite is evident with the Lewis Sanders line.
An exhaustive search of these records of Westmoreland, Stafford and Prince William, VA and Charles County, Maryland, 1660 to 1780 reveal no trace of any relationship between the Edward Sanders and the Lewis Sanders Line.
Films Viewed in the search for Elinor:
Prince William: 0033103, 05, 0033120, 1955385, 0031089, 0032998,
Charles County: 003751, 0013750, 0013752

Were there three Lewis Sanders?

Although Lewis Sanders is noted in the records several times prior to 1739, the term "Lewis  Sanders Jr." was not used until 1749. If there were more than one Lewis Sanders of age in the county noted between 1739 and 1749, the term "Junior" or "the younger" would have been used. So there probably were not two Lewis Sanders in Stafford or Fairfax during this time frame.

We recognize that there are notations of Lewis Junior or Senior between 1749 and 1761. After that date, no such desgination is used until 1776 (Ten Thousand Name Petition). At this point (1776), it is possible that the Lewis of 1716 has died, Lewis Junior (the one of the 1749 land grant) no longer carries the designation "Junior," and a third Lewis has come of age and is noted in the 1776 petition as a Junior. 

Coincidentally, Lewis Jr. obtains his first grant in 1749 and Lewis Senior sells his lease one year later in 1750.

In 1761 Lewis Sanders, Junior, is listed on the 1761 Rent Roll of Fairfax. Lewis Senior is not listed.  Has he died? But then why is Lewis still identified as a Junior? (

And then this:  On November 27th 1771 Lewis Sanders was paid 500 Pounds of tobacco for the care of Eleanor Sanders (his mother?). Page 123, Film 1421477.Although we are reduced to speculation here, I think it’s likely this Eleanor was Nellie Daniel, the mother of Lewis, Jr. If Lewis, Sr. and Nellie were both born in the mid 1690s, as we think, then Nellie would have been about 75 or so in 1770. If this is she, she probably didn’t live much longer. 

The second record we find of Lewis Sanders, 1724:

…On the 13th day of the 5th month 1724, one week later, William Gowen appointed his "well-beloved friend”, Lewis Sanders, of the County of Stafford, attorney," to acknowledge the transfer…” Stafford County Deed Book 1, page 125.

A cursory examination of numerous Grants, indicate that William Gowen was a neighbor of Lewis Sanders:

Gowen‘s property was located on a branch of the Popes Head, named the Rattlesnake Branch, adjacent to Thomas Ford (1725).

In 1728 Lewis Sanders received a Lease from George Mason containing 100 acres. We have not viewed the 1728 document, but we have viewed several leases originated by Mason during the 1728-1732 time frame, and all were the “lease for lives or years” type document. We would imagine that the 1728 Lease to Lewis, when located, will name additional family members. Lewis transferred the property to Mason’s son, George on 23 June 1750 and therein noted the 1728 Lease as well as the noting that the property lies “at the head of the Accotinct and above the Horse Pen Run”.  (As of 1750 Lewis Senior has divested himself of real property in Fairfax). 
A first mention of Daniel Sanders is with Lewis when Daniel and Lewis are noted as chain carriers for an August 1739 warrant and then again in a December survey for Samuel Stone. The surveyed property was on the Popes Head Run and the Waters of Accotinct and is adjacent to Col. George Mason’s plantation and the Ox Road.  It is also adjacent to the 1749 Fairfax Grant to Lewis Sanders Jr. Are Daniel and Lewis Sanders Sr. brothers, or father and son? Surveyor James Thomas. Abstracts of VA’s Northern Neck Warrants and Surveys, Volume III.
In 1741 Lewis Sanders voted in the House of Burgess Election, Prince William County.  He voted for Col. John Colville and William Fairfax. Page 525 Deed Book E Prince William County.  (Each voter was allowed 2 votes). Lewis was the only Sanders listed on the Voters Roll, indicating, at the least, that he was the only Sanders in Prince William who both owned property and was of legal age to vote. 

In 1745 Fairfax, Lewis Sanders is exempted from paying Parish Taxes.  This usually indicates one is too old or infirm.  In fact, in 1759 his son Lewis Jr. is exempted from Levy’s due to illness.  Film 0031322 Page 362.

We do not find the designation “Lewis Sr. or Jr.” between 1716 and 1749.  (1749 Grant to Lewis Jr). Therefore, we assume there was only one Lewis of tithable age in this time frame.

In June 1759 Lewis Sanders, Junior, is relieved from paying the church or county levy because of his illness.

It is probable that Lewis Senior died in 1761 or shortly thereafter.

In 1760 the Truro Parish files a petition against Lewis Sanders.  No designation is given. Page 503, Ibid.

In 1744 an election was held for the House of Burgess.  In order to qualify to vote, by statute, a man must have been twenty-one and have acquired an ownership interest in land. On this voters list we find Isaac, Lewis, James, William Sanders, Lewis and Isaac are noted on the list taken by Lewis Elzey and within one tithe listing of each other, which strengthens our suspicion that they are closely related. James and William Sanders are of the “Gunnell Branch” of Sanders and are listed twice on the list. Fairfax Deed Book A page 238.

The first listing for Isaac Sanders is on the 1744 Voting List. James and William Sanders, of the Tuscarora Branch, are also found on the 1744 Burgess Voting List.

If the 1744 voters list is complete and we assume that all Sanders men of age voted, then we can further assume that any subsequent notations of the Sanders surname, other than William, James, Isaac or Lewis, may indicate that the therein named Sanders, came of age after 1744 and therefore may be a son or brother of one the aforementioned men. Of course we realize that this suggestion would preclude the possibility of another line of Sanders relocating to Fairfax. 

We will proceed under the former assumption and see where that takes us.  Of course our theories herein are strictly my interpretation of the recorded facts. Other opinions are encouraged!

"...In a 1746 Court Case involving Slaughter and George Mason, Daniel Sanders gave his deposition and therein stated that Lewis Sanders is in possession of the old house and  two cornfields along with his present dwelling.” In the abovementioned case, Lewis Sanders is identified as a tenant of George Mason. This is the property identified as a one hundred acre lease obtained in 1728 from George Mason.

On June 26th, 1750 Lewis Sanders sells this one hundred acre Lease, which he was granted on December 4th, 1728 by George Mason, Senior (the 3rd) to George Mason (the 4th). The brief description places the property on the Accotink, above the Horse Pen Run. This would locate the property of Lewis and Daniel within tw miles of each other. In 1728 the property was located in the Parish of Overwharton, Stafford County.  Book C Page 65 of Deeds. (Liber).  FHL Film # 0031295

A record dated September 1752 has Lewis Sanders Senior suing Robert Colecough. Page 246 Film 31321.  In March of 1753 Lewis prevailed in his suit, which lasted  nine days.  He was awarded 491 pounds of Tobacco.  A witness for Lewis Sr. was Francis Paget, a local Merchant. Page 340, Ibid.

We believe that the documents naming Lewis Sanders in 1716, 1724 and 1744, 1745,1750,175 and 1753 are the same man and later records will narrow the possibilities of his identify to Lewis Sanders Sr. Records have not been found which date Lewis Senior’s death.  However, in 1761 Lewis Sanders Jr. is identified as such and this may mean Senior is still alive.  It is the last designation of either Senior or Junior we find until the 1776 Ten Thousand Names Petition.

We believe that Lewis Sanders Sr. had at least three and maybe as many as five sons, Lewis Jr., Daniel, Francis, perhaps Isaac and maybe George. We have not viewed any documentation which states a definite relationship between any of them. The “evidence” is not as strong as we would, however we believe plausible theories may be derived and presented.  

Three of Lewis’s sons, individually, received leases (grants), which were duly recorded: 

Daniel’s property was surveyed on the Difficult Run; Francis’s property was on the Beaverdam and Lewis was located on the Accotink and Popes Head branches.  Ironically, these are the only properties granted to the Lewis Sanders family until 1764 when a son of Daniel, William was granted the exact property that Daniel had surveyed in 1745. It also appears to this researcher that none of the children of Lewis Jr., Daniel or Francis were of tithable age by 1749. Hence, their earliest born sons could have been born as early as 1732/1733 and still not appear on the 1749 Tithe List.

In October 1745, by action of the Vestry of Truro Parish, Lewis Sanders was exempted from paying the Parish Levy for the future.  No other explanation was given; however, as was customary, a person of advanced age or infirmity was often exempted from tithes or taxes.  Minutes of the Truro Vestry Page 48.  Film 1421477.

Lewis Senior signed the 1776 “Ten Thousand Name Petition.” The Lewis Senior of 1776 is unlikely to be the 1716 Lewis who would have been close to ninety in 1776. We think the Lewis Senior of 1776 is actually the same person as the 1749 Lewis, whom we have previously designated Lewis, Jr. The identity of the person referred to as Lewis Jr. in 1776 is uncertain. He could be a previously unknown son of the 1749 Lewis or he could be a cousin or other relative. Our research has not thoroughly covered the 1770-1790 Lewis Sanders family.

The research of Lewis Sanders continues as of June 30th 2009.  The search for documentation regarding his sons is as complete as the available records allow.

Lewis Sanders Junior

As stated in the chapter on Lewis Sanders Senior, in August 1739 a warrant in Prince William County is issued to Samuel Stone, and in December 1739, when the survey for the warrant is made, Lewis Sanders and Daniel Sanders are the chain carriers. We cannot be certain which Lewis this document refers to; however it is the first mention of Daniel and Lewis together.

In 1745 on March 18th, Lewis Sanders and Daniel Sanders are charged with the inventory of the property of Nicholas Carroll of Cameron Parish. This order may refer to Lewis Senior.  However, if it is noting Lewis Junior, we may calculate a possible birth date, considering the above Survey, of circa 1724. Remember as of 1745, Lewis Sanders Senior is exempt from taxation.

Added November 2011:The following court record would confirm that it was in fact Louis Junior who appears in the Inventory record.

Nicholas Carrol Inventory: Daniel Sanders, Benoni Halley, Lewis Sander s Jr. Fairfax County, Virginia Will Book A 1742 - 1752 and Will Book B 1752 - 1767, P. 16 - Page 151 April 10, 1746.

Lewis Junior’s first Grant:

In 1749, on November 6th, Lewis Sanders, the younger, is Granted ninety-eight acres, lying on the lower side of the Main So. Run of Accotink, adjoining Mr. Fitzhugh in Fairfax County. Lewis Sr. will sell his 1728 Lease within the next few months.

Lewis Sanders is on the 1749 Tithe List of Reverend Green listed with one tithable. This listing could be Lewis Senior or his son Lewis, the younger.  Daniel and Francis, sons of Lewis Senior, are already out of his household and are listed separately.

In January 1752 Robert and Edward Maxwell, merchants of Fairfax, sue Lewis Sanders and Francis Sanders. There is no designation for Lewis so this could be Junior or Senior, but we feel it is Junior because of recorded documentation referring to Lewis, Jr. and men we believe to be his brothers.  Of additional importance here, is the notation of Francis and Lewis together. We think they are brothers.  Page 194 Film 31321.

In 1752, on Page 196 of the same film, Lewis Jr. petitions the Court to turn a road by his property. he petition is dismissed.

In 1752 John Pagan, a merchant, sues Lewis Jr. and is awarded 1829 pounds of tobacco, with legal interest from March 1748.  This probably indicates Lewis has been farming since at least the spring of 1747 and didn’t pay his bills for seed, tools and incidentals. Page 222, Ibid.

In 1752, on 23 November on the petition of Lewis Sanders Jr.: “…Ordered that John Cotton James Halley, William Scutt & William Kitchen or any three of them view the road by the Petitioners plantation & report upon oath whether the same may be conveniently turned Lewis Sanders Jr. petitions the court for road repairs by his plantation…” The Kitchen family will maintain a long association with the Sanders family.Lewis receives permission to turn the road in June of 1753. Page 407, Ibid.

In 1758 Lewis Sanders Jr. is exempted from paying levies during his illness. FHL Film 31322 Page 362.

The demise of Lewis Senior:

In 1761 Lewis Sanders Junior, is listed on the 1761 Fairfax Rent Roll.  Lewis Senior is not listed. Has he died?  But then why is Lewis still identified as a junior?( The rent roll of 1761 is the last time we note the designation “Lewis Junior” used through 1775.

More evidence that Lewis Senior has died:

 In 1761 Lewis Sanders is listed on the Grand Jury. Since Lewis Senior disposed of his property in 1750 and one must be a “freeholder” to join the grand jury, this Lewis must be Lewis Junior.

Incidental recordings of Lewis Junior:

In 1765 Lewis Sanders leases property to William Crawford and Thomas Dunmore.  Page 71 Fairfax Court Orders.

In 1769 Fairfax, Lidia Sanders is bound by the Church Wardens to Charles Turner.  She is said to be 4 years old (Born in 1764).  Who was her father? We believe the only Sanders family in Fairfax in 1768 is that of Lewis Sanders Jr. 15 May 1769, page 130.

In 1769 a license is granted to Charles Turner to keep an ordinary in Alexandria who with John West Jr. acknowledged a Bond for the same.  1769 Page 130 Beth Mitchell.  Recall that John West was the deceased whose will was witnessed by Lewis Sanders in 1716.  We have somewhat of a connection with the named Turner, West and Lidia Sanders.

In 1769 Lewis is in Court against James Archer.  He is adjudged to pay three pounds and seven Shillings plus seventy-two pounds of tobacco.  Page 192 Fairfax Orders.

On May 21st, 1771 Lewis Sanders is discharged from paying levies in the future. Fairfax Orders FHL Film 0031323 Part 2 page 211.

On November 27th 1771 Lewis Sanders was paid 500 Pounds of tobacco for the care of Eleanor Sanders (his mother?  Sister?).  Page 123, Film 1421477.

In 1773, in July, Lewis sells 204 acres to John Clark. The description of the property locates it on the Headwaters of the Popes Head and Accotink.  His wife is named therein as Rosamin.

In 1781 Lewis Sanders is involved in a property line dispute with Col. Fitzhugh and the resulting survey and plat map notes the tw dwelling houses of Lewis Sanders: the old house of Lewis Senior and the present dwelling of Lewis Jr. Also in the above-mentioned case, Benjamin is named as a son of Lewis. We believe this Lewis is Lewis Jr. (1749). FHL fiche, noting page 122/123 of the Survey.

On the Tax List of Fairfax, in 1782, Lewis is listed with nine persons tithable in his household. We have not researched this family of Lewis (Junior). No Blacks are listed in the household.

Daniel Sanders of Difficult Run:
A Son of Lewis (or Brother?)

As stated in the chapter on Lewis Sanders Sr. and restated in the chapter on Lewis Sanders Jr., a warrant was issued in August 1739 to Samuel Stone.  In December 1739, when the survey is made, Daniel Sanders and Lewis Sanders are the chain carriers. This is the first notation of Daniel and Lewis together and we believe the Lewis is Lewis Senior. Lewis Junior was born circa 1723 and would have been about sixteen years old at the time of the survey. If the survey refers to him, this probably was his first notation of record.

Daniel not being listed on the 1744 Burgess Voters List had nothing to do with his age; he simply was not a freeholder until he acquired property in 1745.

In 1745 on March 18th, Daniel Sanders, Lewis Sanders, John Kitchen and W.W. Kitchen are charged with the inventory of the property of Nicholas Carroll, deceased.  This, again, is probably Lewis Senior, and being duty bound to inventory the property of an estate, would probably not be a responsibility assigned a young man, as Lewis Junior was. The Sanders and the Kitchen Families will share a long association, through the Revolutionary War era, their Pension Applications in the 1830’s and beyond.

The 1745 Survey for Daniel Sanders.

“…Beginning at corner to the land of said Lee Esq. in line of the said Ashton’s land. Thence extending by the said Ashton’s land N 42 W 158 poles crossing the aforesaid Glade & branch to B a corner small red oak on  the left; thence S 70 W 90 poles to (C) a small white oak and a small red oak, thence S  65 W 88 poles to (D) three black oak saplins. Thence from the Ashton’s Patent N 32 W 85 poles to (E) three scrubby black oaks thence N 761/2 E 378 poles to (F) four small red oaks in a bottom near a Cluster of pines, a corner to the land of The Honorable Thomas Lee Esq. thence by the lines of the said Lee’s land S 25 W 128 poles to (G) a small hickory and a black oak on a knoll thence South 94 poles  to the first mentioned beginning…Surveyed by me Daniel Jenings  Surv’r of Fairfax County   Chain Carriers: Fran’ s Saunders and Rich’d Nelson Junr.” (Refer Glen Sanders). A 1764 Grant, for 180acres, to William Sanders Jr., bears the same legal description as Daniel’s and in fact is the same property.  William is a son of Daniel. See Exhibit “D.”

The 1745 survey represents Daniel’s first land acquisition. The survey also gives us a clue as to a familial relationship with Francis Sanders, when a chain carrier therein was identified as “Fran’s Sanders”. It is plausible they were brothers.

The physical location of the property lies near the settlements of Penderwood and Vale.  It is three to four miles west of Lewis Sanders Junior’s 1749 Grant on the Accotink and about four miles southerly of the William Gunnell holdings on the Piney Branch of Difficult Run.

Daniel Sanders gave his deposition in a 1746 Fairfax Court Case involving Slaughter and George Mason, and therein stated that Lewis Sanders is in possession of the old house and two Cornfields along with his present dwelling. In the abovementioned Case, Lewis Sanders is identified as a tenant of George Mason. In 1750 this property is identified as a 100acre lease obtained in 1728 from George Mason. This strengthens the theory that Daniel Sanders was probably Lewis Sanders oldest son as Daniel was called to depose and not Lewis Jr. (Or could he be Lewis Senior’s brother?)

In 1749 Daniel and Lewis Sanders Jr. are noted in a road order dated 27 September:“…To do work on the said Road and assist in keeping the same in repair”.  It identifies the road as the “Prince William Road between the Ox Road and where it comes into the Road to this Court House…”Francis Summers, Thomas Felangdigam and William Kitchen were also ordered to assist.  Fairfax Orders 27 page 35 Film 31321. (First mention of Daniel and Lewis Junior together)

Daniel is in court in 1749, via a suit brought by John Pagan, a merchant. His security is William Kitchen.  Page 85, Ibid.

On the 1749 Fairfax Tithe List Daniel Sanders is shown with three tithables, himself and two others. There is a possibility that one of the unnamed tithes in Daniel’s family may be George.  This theory is strengthened by the January 1753 recordation of a Summons to Court for both George and Daniel Sanders.  Page 299, Film 31321 Page 306.

Daniel answers the summons and was charged with not assisting the constable in his duties.  He was fined 10 Shillings.  George did not answer the summons and there is no further information available. This record of citing George and Daniel together indicates a familial relationship.

With the 1753 Court record in mind, we now assume that Daniel Sanders was older that previously thought.  He may have been old enough to father George Sanders, who is first noted in the 1753 Court case in Fairfax.

George must have been at least 21 years old when he is first mentioned in the Fairfax court summons in 1753, but he is not on the 1749 Tithe list. He was too young in 1749 or he is one of the unnamed tthes in Daniels family or, for some other reason, he is missing from the list. If George is a son of Daniel, he must have been born before 1732, which would push Daniel’s birth year back to 1712 or earlier.

In June 1757 Daniel loses a suit against Lewis Elzey in Fairfax Court and is ordered to pay 30 Shillings.  FHL Film 003122 Page 136.

In 1758 Loudoun County, Daniel appears twice in Court, against the Church Wardens of Cameron Parish. Loudoun Order Book 1 Pg. 72.

In 1759 Daniel Sanders, is listed with no additional tithables on Richard Coleman’s Tithe List.

On Coleman’s 1760 Tithe List, Daniel is listed, in the same household with William Sanders.  This might indicate that William came of age in 1760.

In 1761 Coleman listed Daniel and William Sanders together again.  They are probably father and son.

The surviving lists of 1763 and 1764 do not list a Sanders on Difficult Run.

By 1765 Daniel has died and William Sanders has inherited or was granted his property. William is listed on the alone on the 1765 Tithe List.

A Daniel continues to be listed through 1786 in the tax records of Loudoun.

William Sanders Junior, a Son of Daniel

When William Sanders Jr. received his Grant in 1764, he is noted as the “Heir at Law” of Daniel Sanders, Dec’d.

As stated previously in the section on Daniel Sanders, William was on the Tithe lists in 1760 and 1761 living with Daniel.  William was not on the 1759 Tithe List, so it would appear that he has just turned 16 in 1760, making his birth date circa 1744.

In 1760 William Sanders of  Difficult Run first appears in the records of Loudoun.

In 1767 William Sanders is listed as one tithable, owning 180 Acres.      

In 1768 William Sanders is listed as one Tithe. 

Daniel Sanders (Junior) is also listed in 1768, (His first Listing) as 1 Tithe by William Carr Lane.  Although they are not in the same household, William and Daniel appear to be neighbors. Gabriel Fox is also listed as a neighbor. We will show below in this work that in the 1769 Loudoun Court Orders, Francis Sanders, an orphan, is bound to Fox by the church Wardens. 

In 1769 William Sanders is listed, as one tithe, by William Carr Lane. 

In 1771 William and James Sanders are adjacent to each other, by George Summers.  This is the first Listing for James Sanders in Cameron Parish and indicates a possible relationship to the Difficult Run Sanders. 

In 1772 William Sanders is listed with one tithe and his neighbors are William Kitchen, Francis Summers and Nathaniel Barker.  (Once again the Sanders Kitchen connection). 

In 1778 we find the last listing of William on the Tithe Lists. 

Daniel, William’s father, as we have shown, may have been born as early as 1711.  He may have been married by 1731.We could substantiate that William, in 1764, just turned 21 and was then of legal age to inherit his fathers property. The notation in the 1764 grant provides proof of Daniels demise and that William is his oldest son.  But why then is he designated “Junior” in the document? In the afore mentioned 1764 Grant, William is identified as a Jr. probably to differentiate that there is an older William, in the family, that is not his father. (Refer Gary Sanders). 

Perhaps the following information will help explain this: 

“…In Virginia parent's would name their children after the surname of grandparents. If slaves received these kinds of names this could suggest white parentage to the slaves. The use of Sr. (which meant elder or first) or Jr. (which could simply mean younger) could refer to two cousins or an uncle and a nephew holding these names and not father and son. A person could be a junior in one record and later appear as a senior in other records if the previous senior had left the county or died” 

There are several entries in the court orders concerning men named William Sanders, but as stated before, there is no way to absolutely differentiate between them. 

There is one other record of a William Jr. in a 1768 Court Case; however no other distinguishing information is found therein.  


Isaac Sanders of the 1744 Burgess Voters List: Brother or Son of Lewis?

Isaac Sanders is shown many times in the Fairfax/Loudoun records between 1744 thru 1787, which lends to the belief, there was more than one Isaac Sanders noted during those years. 

The first notation of Isaac in the records found to date is on the 1744 Burgess Voters list.  This record should indicate two facts: one, that he is 21 years of age, born before 1723, and two, that he owns real property.  We have not found any other indication he owned property. 

After his notation on the 1744 list, he is not noticed again until he is listed on the 1760 tithe List of Loudoun County. There is a 16-year void of records in Fairfax and Loudoun concerning Isaac. We have diligently searched the available microfilmed records of the Fairfax and Loudoun Courts and have not found a mention of Isaac during that time frame. As of June 2009, there is no intelligence to be found, which would substantiate a theory, as to why Isaac is not found during that 16year span of time. (Although Gary Sanders is currently exploring the possibilities.) Hopefully, future research will unveil the mystery of his whereabouts during that 16year stretch. 

Isaac should have been on the 1749 Tithe List, but he was not.  There are at least three possibilities as to why he was not listed: 

1) He is one of the unidentified tithables in Daniel Sanders family, which showed  three tithes.
2) He is the “unidentifiable” Sanders on the 1749 list.
3) He is no longer in Fairfax.

We believe we have identified one Isaac Sanders as being related to the Francis Sanders family of Beaverdam Creek.  However, we still hold out for an additional possibility that there is another Isaac who may be a son of Daniel. 

After the 16 year void of Isaac in the records, 1744-1760, an Isaac is noted on the 1760 Loudoun Tithe list taken by Francis Peyton. The neighbors, James Buckley & Thomas Donohue provide evidence that Isaac’s location is on the Beaverdam Creek, which may connect him with Francis. Thomas Donohue is noted in 1762 as living in the household of Sarah Sanders, whom we believe to be Francis’ wife.  

This is probably a different and younger Isaac than the one viewed on the 1744 List.

Of interest here is the fact that the Isaac, who is a member of the Beaverdam Francis Sanders family, is the only member thereof listed on the 1760 Tithe List.  This could mean that he is the oldest son and that Francis has died and Sarah, Francis’s wife is not yet listed as the head of family.  (She is listed in 1762). 

In 1761 Isaac Saunders and Aaron Saunders, Francis’s proven son, are listed on Peyton’s list, in the same household!  Aaron probably just became of tithable age, making his birth year prior to circa 1745. It would also indicate that Isaac may be the head of family and his other brothers are not yet tithable. 

1762 Isaac, Sarah and James are on the Tax List of James Hamilton, whose district encompassed the Beaverdam.  This discovery would connect Isaac to Francis.  It is also the first listing for James on the Beaverdam. 

In 1767 Isaac Saunders and James are listed in the John Moss Jr. District.  

On October 10th, 1767 Isaac and Aaron are noted in the Court record as witnesses.  Order Book C Page 336. 

In 1768 Isaac, Aaron and George appear on Leven Powell’s 1768 list.  Isaac and Aaron are in on the same page and George is listed nearby. We believe that at this point, George is connected to Francis. 

In 1769 Isaac Saunders and Anthony Fox are listed in Leven Powell’s District. 

In 1771 Isaac Saunders is listed in the Shelburne Parish by Leven Powell. Shelburne is west of Goose Creek. 

In 1772, Sanders, Isaac; 1 tithable, Shelburne Parish by Thos. Lewis 1772. 

In 1773, Sanders, Isaac; Fox, Anthony- 2 Tithes by Thomas Lewis (A Quaker). 

An Isaac is prevalent in the court orders from 1773 to 1783 and in Book E, page 305, he is appointed a constable in Loudoun; on Page 155 he is a witness for James Buckley.  The Buckley’s are neighbors of The Beaverdam Sanders Family. 

1774, Isaac Sanders is a constable and signs the Revolution Petition from Loudoun. 

Isaac is appointed a road surveyor on October 10th 1774.  (Order Book E Page 504).  The allocated workers for this road order include Sarah Sanders and other owners who are known neighbors of Francis Sanders; one adjacent owner of the Beaverdam Sanders was Appollos Cooper, whose 1771 legal description of his property contained this verbiage “…near the House of Francis Sanders”(Book H page 249 of Loudoun Deeds).  Cooper gained title through a grant from Buckley. 

At this point in time, our interpretation of the above documents indicates two or more different men named Isaac were living in these counties between 1744 and 1783. One disappears sometime between 1744 and 1760. We believe this one to be the son of Lewis, Sr.  If he were a brother to the senior Lewis, he would have been noted in the records of Fairfax/Stafford prior to 1744 and he was not. This Isaac was born prior to 1723, which would link him closely with the other sons of Lewis discussed herein. 

Another Isaac appears about 1760, and because of his association with Aaron, he is most likely Aaron’s older brother and was probably born in the late 1730s. If the 1760 Isaac is not the brother of Aaron, he may be a son of Daniel or Lewis, Junior. An Isaac Sanders continues to appear in the records of Fairfax and Loudoun until 1783, but we are unable to determine whether these refer to the same person as the Isaac who was living with Aaron in 1760. 

If the Isaac of Fairfax in 1760 is indeed the brother of Aaron, we are close to establishing evidence that Aaron, Moses, and Isaac of Fairfax are the same people as the three brothers of Anson County, North Carolina. Family tradition among the descendants of the Sanders family in North Carolina is that Isaac moved about 1760 to Cumberland County, North Carolina, but the first documentary record of him in Cumberland is in 1780, and he may well have moved back and forth from one state to the other for several years before settling permanently. 


Francis Sanders of Beaverdam Creek: A son of Lewis

By following the timeline of the recorded documents presented herein, one could determine Francis Sanders of the Beaverdam Creek family may have sired the four Sanders brothers of Anson/Montgomery/Randolph County; Isaac, Moses, Aaron and Francis.  There is the additional possibility that George Sanders noted in Anson in 1774 is another son. On the other hand, in the chapter on Isaac, discussed above, it appears that the Beaverdam Isaac remained in Loudoun, while at the same time, the brother Isaac, was in North Carolina. This presents a problem that is as of yet unexplained. 

In 1745, Francis Sanders was a chain carrier on a survey ordered for Daniel Sanders.  The survey was for property on the Difficult Run.

Francis is listed as a Quaker on the 1749 List of Reverend Green. Since he is listed as one tithe, it would indicate that his sons, Isaac who is first listed in 1760; Aaron in 1761 and Moses in 1763 were not yet 16 years of age.  If we conclude that Isaac is Francis’ son and he turns sixteen in 1760, he would have been born in 1744. Using the same formula, Aaron would have been born in 1745 and Moses in 1747. 

Further postulating, if Francis’s first born was Isaac (it might have been Sarah) and Francis was married at twenty, it would give him a purposed birth date circa 1724. However if Francis’s children were not listed on the tithe lists until  twenty-one years of age, we can push the dates of births back five years. This effort would fit researcher’s earlier scenarios of birthdates of the four brothers.  Francis then would have been born in 1719 or earlier. Francis is not listed on the 1744 House of Burgess Voters List.  This may indicate he was not yet of legal age; however it probably indicates he did not hold title to real property. 

In June 1750 William Wallace sues Francis and Daniel Sanders for 1356 Pounds of Tobacco.  Wallace prevailed and the Sanders brothers were charged interest from June of 1747. Page 85 Film 31321.  This illustrates a probable fact that after Francis assisted Daniel with his survey in 1745, they probably farmed the land together.  Evidently they did not pay for their seed in a timely manner and Wallace sued for payment. This recording further suggests that Francis was at least twenty-one at the time of the suit, which could place his birth date prior to 1729. 

On the same day Francis and Daniel are sued John Pagan, a merchant of Fairfax, sues Lewis Junior for 388 Pounds of Tobacco.  Page 87, Ibid.  This indicates Lewis is another brother. Interestingly enough we find the three sons of Lewis Senior being sued on the same day by two different merchants. 

In January 1752, Robert and Edward Maxwell, merchants of Fairfax sue Francis Sanders and Lewis Sanders.  There is no designation on Lewis, but it’s probably Junior. It appears that perhaps additional Sanders brothers farmed together. Page 194, Ibid. 

And then we find this:

In December 1754 the estate of Richard Shore sues Francis and James Sanders for two pounds currency.  William Janney was their bail.  The suit carried interest from January of 1752, the date of the causal factor for the suit. Francis leased property from Mahlon Janney in 1753 and this fact is probably the reason William Janney was their bail. James being named, as a defendant would indicate that he is at least twenty-one in 1752. A birth date calculated as circa 1731. He probably is not a son of Francis and will be discussed later in this work.In addition Francis, individually, was sued by the estate of Shore on the same day and pled not guilty and requested a jury trial.  He did not appear for the trial. 

In July of 1756 Francis Hague (Quaker) sues Francis.  Francis prevailed and his costs were borne by the plaintiff.  Fairfax Court Orders page 15 FHL Film 31312. 

In May/June 1757, Francis is noted in a Court /Case against John Murry.  He prevailed and was awarded 2 Pounds and 5 Schillings and 6 Pence and 100 Pounds of Tobacco.  FHL Film 003122 Page 105. 

Francis is not listed on the Tithe List in 1760. But his neighbor, James Buckley is, as is Isaac Sanders. If Buckley is listed Francis should have been as they are adjacent neighbors.  Has he died and Isaac is his heir? 

We believe this bit of information would help to substantiate Isaac as part of the Beaverdam Branch of Sanders, and quite possibly Francis’s oldest son!  Could he have been named after Francis' father? Which may mean that the 1744 Isaac Sanders was Lewis Sanders brother! 

In 1755 Francis and Fernando O’ Neale, along with Joseph Phillips, Marty Connel, are sued by the estate of William Maddie. Page 234 Film 31321. Moses and Sarah Sanders, Phillips, Connel and O’ Neal are connected in another action in 1764, discussed herein, which will show a connection between Sarah and Francis. 


Sarah, Francis Sanders Wife? 

In 1762 Sarah Sanders is listed Jas Hamilton’s District with one  tithe and Thomas Donohue.  Thomas Donohue is listed in 1760 as a neighbor to Isaac Sanders. In April 1765, Sarah Sanders, widow, is in a Court Case against Marty Connell.  Since Francis’s daughter is named as Sarah, and this Sarah Sanders is referred to as a widow, it is logical to assume that she is Francis’s widow.This further indicates that Francis has died prior to 1765. 

Francis Sanders 1753 Lease 

The Janney family was a prosperous Quaker family and Mahlon Janney was the son of Amos Janney, a holder of several hundred acres of grant land.  One of these grants was located on the Beaverdam Branch of the north or northwest fork of Goose Creek. The original Janney Grant was surveyed and then subsequently leased in 150 acre lots.  One of these lots was leased to Francis Sanders in 1753. 

The verbiage in Francis’s lease stated in part,  “…the house, animals, equipment and etc…” “…To have and to hold the said 150 acres with the appurtenances unto the said Francis Sanders his heirs, executors, administrators assigns for and during the natural lives of Sarah Sanders, his daughter and Aaron Sanders and Moses Sanders, his sons, the longest liver of them…” paying a yearly sum of forty three shillings and nine pence current money of Virginia or four hundred and thirty pounds of tobacco. Wit: Jon Hough (Quaker), Robert Stanford. Deed Book C page 581 (Reference Glenn Sanders). 

It is plausible that Francis named his youngest children on the lease to ensure the longest possible duration of ownership.Francis “lease for Lives” was designed so that it would not terminate upon his demise.  It would continue in his designated family member’s name until the demise of the last named child. 

General information on a “Lease for Lives”: 

In Virginia the “Lease for Lives” was the instrument of choice for conveying property.  The British brought this method to the Colonies. In essence it could include one, two or three additional family members who would be, in addition to the leaseholder, responsible for conditions of the lease during their lifetimes.  We believe that title to the encumbered property would transfer, with out recordation, within the family. 


The Legal description of the 1753 Lease:

“ …Beginning at a White Oak on a hill, the North side of the Beaverdam Branch of Goose Creek above the mouth of the Black Oak Thicket Branch extending thence;

South 20 West 160 Poles to two White Oaks and a Gum, corner to James Buckley’s lot thence;South 85 East 150 Poles to a Hickory, the North side of Goose Creek and corner to a lot surveyed for Francis Marbury, Thence;

North 160 Poles to a Dogwood and a Hickory on a Great Hill, thence;

North 86 West 150 Poles to the first station…”  FHL Film #0031295 Page 581)

See Exhibits “E thru G” 

The verbiage, among other things, would seem to indicate that the property was occupied prior to the lease, which was often the case and therefore we believe Francis was living here when he is listed as a Quaker on Green’s 1749 list. The physical location of the lease is remote even by today’s distance standards. 

In the margin of the recorded lease is a notation that isn’t completely legible; however, it seems to state; “5 July 1755. Dd. Jno. Houge”. Does Dd mean “deed” or “delivered”?

The 1753 lease is distant about twenty miles as the crow flies from the Daniel Sanders survey of 1745 and about eight miles South of James Sanders, of the Tuscaroara Branch, 1761 lease.  See Map Exhibit “B.” 

The neighbors of Francis Sanders: 

James Buckley and Mary his wife, grant to Appollos Cooper 15 acres on the Beaverdam Branch of the Goose Creek.  The legal description states, “…beginning at 2 black Oaks standing on the East side of Beaverdam…near the House of Francis Sanders…”(Book H page 249 of Loudoun Deeds). 

A lease to Andrew Combs, in 1766, noted Francis’ boundary in its’ legal description it states: “…under lease to Francis Sanders…” And then, this: Stephen Rozel’s lease, in 1765, contains the verbiage "where Francis Sanders lived." 

Mahlon Janney, who had made the 1753 lease to Francis Sanders,also leased 150 acres to Francis Marbury in that same year.  The neighbors were identified as Francis Hague and Francis Sanders.  Refr. Patricia B. Duncan. Loudoun County Deed Bk:Pg: A:233 Date: 1 May 1758 Rec. 14 Nov 1758

Francis Marbury, the neighbor adjacent to Francis Sanders on the Beaverdam Creek, was the grandson of another Francis Marbury who died in Prince Georges County MD, in 1734.

According to researcher Sidney Holdrege, among the given names appearing among the descendants of the elder Francis Marbury were Hatton, Leonard, and Middleton. These given names also appear among the children of William Hamilton, who we believe to be the brother of the Reverend Moses Sanders who married Mary Hamilton in Brunswick County VA. Our research suggests that Moses was a son of the Beaverdam Creek Francis Sanders.

Some of the Marburys, including the younger Francis and his wife Tabitha, moved to North Carolina in the late 1760s, about the same time the Sanders were moving to North Carolina. This Francis Marbury died in Rowan or Montgomery County, and his wife Tabitha appears as a widow on the 1800 Montgomery County, North Carolina,  census. The following Web site gives a timeline on the movement of the Marbury family:

It's also of interest that  the younger Francis Marbury may have been a neighbor to Moses Sanders in Montgomery County, North Carolina:

Moses STEED was born 2 1748 in Brunswick County, Virginia. He died 3 c 1839 in Montgomery County, North Carolina. In 1773 Moses Steed and Moses Sanders witnessed a deed in Anson Co. In 1774 there was a road work order listing Moses, Nathaniel, and Philip Steed.  It also listed Thomas Hearne,Francis Marbury, Moses and Aaron Sanders, and Edmund Hurley, whose families would later intermarry.

No documentation, through 1783, provides proof of the property Francis acquired through the 1753 lease having been transferred. However, we suspect that Sarah, his widow lived on the property for several years after his demise and it is logical to suspect, from the records viewed, that the property may have passed to a son. There may be more than two possibilities of to whom the property may have eventually passed: Isaac, James, or who else? As we have exhausted possibilities thru 1783, this transfer will be a search for another day and must continue beginning in 1783. 

The website below has some interesting historical tidbits of the area in which the Sanders Family lived: 

The documented children of Francis Sanders are Moses, Aaron and Sarah.  The undocumented children may be Isaac, George, James and, of course, my progenitor, Francis (1755-1820?).  Here’s how we got there:

Aaron, Moses, and George disappear from the Loudoun County record between 1764 and 1769; individuals with the same name appear in Anson County, North Carolina on warrants and surveys as early as 1771.  Aaron, George, and Moses are noted together on a road order in 1774 in Anson County. Isaac does not appear in Anson/Montgomery until 1782. Francis, the fourth brother, was probably born about 1755 and therefore too young to appear in any records in Fairfax or Loudoun; it’s likely he moved while still a teenager to North Carolina with his brothers and other relatives. (Refer Barnes Creek Sanders research paper by Jim Sanders 2004) 


Aaron (Not found in Loudoun after 1769)

He is noted in the 1753 lease of Francis as a son. 

The year 1761 is the first tithe listing we have viewed showing Aaron. He is listed with Isaac, suggesting that Aaron may have just turned tithable age and was born circa 1745. James Buckley, Thomas Donohue and Joseph Phillips are listed as neighbors and all have been involved with the Francis Sanders family in court and deed Records. Tithables Reel #99 Lib. Of VA. 

In 1765 Aaron and George are listed in Levin Powell’s District. 

Aaron is a witness in a court case in 1767. At this time he would have to be twenty-one years of age.  His birth date would be prior to 1746, which would substantiate the Tithe List birth date calculation. 

He is on the Tithe List of 1768 listed near George and Isaac. 

In April 1769 Aaron is in Court against Isaac Miller and the case is dismissed. This is the last listing found in the Loudoun records for Aaron. 

Moses (Not found in Loudoun after 1765) 

He also appears on the 1753 lease as a son.

He appears on the 1763 and 1765 Tithe List. (Abstracted by Margaret Hopkins). Moses is probably younger than Isaac and Aaron by a couple of years. In 1763, when he is first listed on the Tithe List, he has probably just turned sixteen and is tithable, making his birth date circa 1747. Once again it is possible to believe that the first mention of the Sanders brothers, on the Tithe Lists, were when they turned twenty-one years of age, moving their birthdates back 5 years. This would place Moses Birth date at 1742 which is the year of birth in family tradition! 


Court Cases tie Moses to the Beaverdam Branch: 

In November 1764 Moses Sanders and James Sanders are witnesses for Fernando O’ Neale in a case against Joseph Phillips. (Order Book B Page 509). We would think he has to be at least 21 for this summons, making his birth date circa 1743. Either incidence would fit previous beliefs as to his birth date. 

Six months later, in April 1765, Sarah Sanders, widow, is in a court case against Marty Connell.  On the same day in a separate case, Marty Connell is involved in a court case with Joseph Phillips. Finding Moses and Sarah involved in actions with the people who were neighbors of Francis Sanders, within a very short time frame, strengthens our argument that Moses and Sarah are the son and wife of Francis.  Loudoun Order Book B page 53. 

It is likely that Moses left Loudoun between 1765 and 1768, as he is not found in the records again. A Moses Sanders is noted in Brunswick County, Virginia and Anson County NC in 1771/1772. We believe that Moses, son of Francis, traveled to Brunswick, Virginia, met and married Mary Hamilton, probably in 1767 or 68; their first-born son, Aaron, was born in 1769. (“Who was Mary Hamilton" paper by Jim Sanders 2008). 

Sarah is noted as a daughter in the 1753 lease.

The possible “undocumented” children of Francis Sanders

Francis Jr. of the Beaverdam Branch 

“… We know there was a Sanders who named his sons Moses, Aaron, Isaac, and Francis. The first three names are understandable if the father was trying to mold his sons by endowing them with the names of biblical heroes. However, the name Francis doesn’t fit the pattern at all. It makes sense, however, if the name of the father himself was Francis!...” (This excellent analysis by Gary Sanders in February 2009, coupled with later findings in the records, indicate that Francis of Beaverdam fits this synopsis.

With the following documentation and some additional postulation, we assume, for lack of any other recorded information to the contrary, that circa 1755, Francis Sanders of Beaverdam Creek had a son named Francis and this man is our direct line progenitor. 

Francis Sanders, Senior, in the late 1740s, left the tutelage of his brothers, Lewis Junior and Daniel, and his father, Lewis, then moved approximately twenty-five miles west to be near the Quaker settlements and the Janney Family.  

Francis is enumerated as a Quaker by Charles Green, an Anglican minister, in 1749. 

Nearly one hundred and thirty years later, in 1878 Moses Martin Sanders, a son of the Reverend Moses Sanders, performed an ordinance for the dead in St. George Utah, for Francis Sanders, whom he identified as a brother of Moses Sanders. 


The connection between  Francis Junior and Moses: 

We have calculated Francis Junior was born circa 1755. He would not have been tithable until 1771. We believe his father died in the early 1760s and since Francis is not found on the Tithe Lists of Loudoun, it is logical to believe that when Aaron, Moses and George left Loudoun, he traveled with them.

There is a dearth of printed information on young Francis but circumstantial evidence and the constant appearance of the Francis and Moses together for a twenty-five year period is a strong clue of a close relationship.  We believe they were brothers.

The citing of Moses as a son of Francis Senior and other connections between the brothers, including family moves and other records, magnifies the possibility that  the Francis of the 1753 land lease very well could have had a son as a namesake.

These names of the Beaverdam Sanders--George, Moses and Aaron-- are prevalent in Anson County, North Carolina, records from 1771-1780.

We have viewed a 1778 record naming a F. Sanders (Francis?) on Lick Creek Montgomery (formerly Anson) in 1777/1778).

Francis was on the Hunting Creek, Wilkes County, North Carolina, from 1778 to 1792, about eight miles from Moses, who was in Wilkes (Rowan and Iredell) from 1782 to 1788. He sold this property in 1792.

Moses moved to South Carolina in the early 1790s, then to Franklin County, Georgia, where in 1798 he is noted is a 1798 jury pool listing with Francis.(Daughters of the American Revolution historical survey published in 1926).

George Sanders,  there's more than one

It appears there were at least  two George Sanders in Fairfax/Loudoun Counties between 1753 and 1768. Following the time line reveals the possibilities of their connection to the Sanders lines.

Many Sanders are noted on the Reverend Green’s Tithe List of 1749 Fairfax, but not a Sanders named George, although it is possible he may have been too young for enumeration or was living with Daniel Sanders, who had three tithes, two of which are unnamed.

In January 1753 George Sanders and Daniel Sanders are summoned to the Fairfax court to answer a complaint from George Simpson, constable. No other information is available from the record. This listing of the two men would probably equate to a relationship with the Difficult Run Branch of the family.

Since this is the first listing for George Sanders, he would have to be at least  twenty-one years of age, making his birth date prior to, or circa 1732. With a 1732 birth date he may be a son of Lewis senior; or, if Daniel was born earlier that we first proposed, say 1711 and married at twenty or in 1731, George may be a son of Daniel. We know that Daniel Junior (born 1750) had a son named George.

In Lloyd Bockstruck’s book “Virginia’s Colonial Soldiers” A George Sanders is listed as a trooper in 1755 on the Fairfax Military Roster for the French and Indian War.  He is listed as 30 years old,  of  English birth, 5’8” tall, brown Hair and a farmer. This would date his birth date as 1725.  An article in the November 7th, 1754, Virginia Gazette Supplement spelled out the requirements for draftees in the French Indian War:

An Act for raising Levies and recruits for the present Expedition against the French on the Ohio.
His Majesty instructed his Lt. Gov. to summon every able bodied man, thru the Justices of the peace of each County, that is not employed of have a lawful calling, or some other lawful means of support and maintenance, to serve as soldiers in the expedition. The Act shall require all Sheriffs to aide and assist the Justices in putting this act into effect.
A voter in the House of Burgess Elections shall be exempt. 
Indentured servants area also exempted.
Only persons between the ages of 21 and 450 are elegible.
Any person who is wounded, shall be cared for by the public treasury.
The term of service is one year.

In 1756 a  George Sanders is also listed in Henning’s Laws of Virginia on Page 21 on the militia payrolls for services performed in the French and Indian War.

Serving in the military on any form was against the Quakers principles, so this George was probably not of the Beaverdam Family.

The 1753 George is not noted in the records of Fairfax after 1755. Could he have been the first of the Sanders to leave Fairfax? Did he possibly return in 1761 and live with the Beaverdam Branch? Or is that the second George?

In 1759, George Sanders is noted when he appears in the Loudoun court orders. (Order Book A page 308). George is then listed on the Loudoun County Tithe Lists in 1761, and is found in Francis Peyton’s District. Isaac and Aaron are also shown in this district. These listings indicate this George is now with the Beaverdam Family.

In 1765 the court orders George to be “added” to the Tithe List of James Hamilton, which would connect him to Beaverdam Family. 

In 1767 he is “added” to the Tithe List in Leven Powell’s District, on which he also appeared in 1768, living with Isaac. Order Book C Page 11 In 1768 George, Aaron and Isaac are on Leven Powell’s District, and George is listed with a Negro slave, Hannah.  This is another breech of Quaker principles.  Perhaps this George is the same man as the one noted earlier in the militia records.

In 1768 George is appointed a surveyor of the road between Goose Creek and the Beaverdam. (Loudoun Order Book D page 55). This presents an association with the Beaverdam Family.

The year 1768 is the last listing for George in Loudoun.

George, Aaron and Moses Sanders are noted together on a road order in 1774, Anson County.

In a 1780 Montgomery County, North Carolina land entry, George Sanders was noted as an adjacent property owner to Reuben Sanders.  Reuben would be at least 21, with a birth date of circa 1759.  We believe he is a son of George.  The two chain carriers on Reuben’s survey are James and Joshua Sanders.  They could be two additional sons of George, or did James, another son of Francis, move to Montgomery County?      


James Sanders

There are several references to James Sanders in the Loudoun Orders prior to 1767. There are possibly three, maybe four, different James Sanders listed as tithables.   One, possibly two, James Sanders are of the Lewis Sanders line. Loudoun Order Book B pages 537 and 545. We do find two references to James that strengthens James’ tie to the Lewis Sanders Line.

In December 1754 in Fairfax, the estate of Richard Shore sued Francis and James Sanders for two pounds currency. The suit carried interest from January of 1752.  At first blush it would seem that James must have been twenty-one by the year 1752.  This would indicate a birth date prior to 1731.  How do we determine his father?  Could he be a son of Lewis Sanders Senior?

Let’s start with Francis. We have previously determined he may have been born as early as 1719. James could not then be his son. Lewis Junior, brother of Francis was born circa 1724. Daniel may be his father if born as early as 1711. But even that early birth date stretches the possibility of him being the father. Logically, our thinking might direct us to Lewis Sanders Senior as James Father. This theory would then give Lewis Senior, whom we believe had sons Daniel, Lewis and Francis, two additional sons, George and James.

Another theory: James is listed with Francis in 1754. This is the first mention of James connecting with the Lewis Sanders line.  Could this have been James of the Tuscarora Branch of Sanders, Sarah Gunnell’s husband? This is probably unlikely as James, at the time, lived on the Four Mile Run which was twenty-five miles from Francis on the Beaverdam.


Is James a younger brother of Francis (Beaverdam)?  He assists Francis on his newly established plantation in 1753. There is a dearth of records regarding James in Fairfax between 1754 and 1761. We know that the James of the Sanders/Gunnell branch moved to the Tuscarora Creek, in Loudoun County, in 1761. 

In 1762, in the Fairfax Quaker records of marriages, we find James Sanders listed as a witness to the marriage of Thomas Gregg and Rebeckah Janney. His appearance in this Quaker record may further substantiate his relationship to Francis the Quaker. (Page 387 Maryland State Archives Film 619).

In 1762 a James Sanders is listed, with one tithable, on Hamilton’s List.  On the same list are Isaac and Sarah (Beaverdam). This may be a Lewis Sanders relative and may be the first year he is tithable. His birth date would be approximately 1746, unless he is the same James who appears with Francis in the suit of 1754, in which case it would be circa 1732.

In November 1764 James Sanders and Moses Sanders (Beaverdam) are named as witnesses against Joseph Phillips (Phillis?). Loudoun Court Orders Book A. His appearance with Moses and the eventual court case of Sarah Sanders against Marty Connell, have strengthened our belief that the three Sanders are related.

In 1771 we find that James and William Sanders, of the Difficult Run Branch, (first listing for James in Cameron Parish) are adjacent to each other, suggesting a possible birth date for this James prior to 1755. Whose son is he?  Most likely he is a son of Daniel.

In 1773/1774 James Sanders is in the same household as the orphan Francis Sanders, who is now 21 years old and is free of his bond to Gabriel Fox. There is more on Francis the Orphan later in this work.

Through 1778 James is found on the Tithe Lists with the Difficult Run Branch Sanders.

Daniel Sanders, Son of Daniel

Information contained in the 1749 Road Order, which names Daniel and Lewis Sanders and William Kitchen, in conjunction with information contained in Revolutionary War pension records, reveal that Daniel Sanders and Daniel Kitchen, both of Fairfax, were neighbors prior to the War. Daniel Kitchen is named as the son of William Kitchen in a Lease and Release dated 1771, when William leased 120 acres in Loudoun County on the Sugarland Run. (Loudoun Deed Book H Page 244).  The Sanders and Kitchen families of the Revolutionary War years are the second generation of the Lewis Sanders and William Kitchen lines. In 1757 William Kitchen leased property, near Daniel Sanders, from George Mason adjacent to the Accotinct and Difficult Run. 

In 1767 Ruth Sanders, wife of Daniel Sr., and Daniel Jr. (born 1750), are living on the Difficult Run property, and are listed together as two tithables. The designation junior or senior does not appear in the records for Daniel Sanders. We use the term here to provide clarity.

In 1768 Daniel Sanders, with one tithe, and William Sanders, also with one tithe, are listed by William Carr Lane. Although they are not in the same household, they appear to be neighbors.

In 1770 Daniel Sanders is involved in an assault and battery case which was dismissed.

In 1772 William Sanders, with one tithe, and is listed next to James Sanders.  Daniel is a few listings away and Francis Sanders is a few listings away from Daniel, living with Gabriel Fox. The neighbors are William Kitchen, Francis Summers and Nathaniel Barker.

This may cement the relationship of the 1755 James to the Daniel Sanders line.

In 1777 Daniel Sanders was drafted into the militia, joined the Army, and fought in the battle of Germantown under George Washington. Daniel Kitchen married Molly Barker in 1786, and Daniel Sanders stated in the war records that knew them and attended their wedding. ( From Rev. War. Application for a Pension deposition taken in Fairfax in 1838.|Daniel|sander|kitchen|sanders/     

In 1776-1778 Daniel and Thomas Sanders were members of the 5th Virginia Regiment commander by Colonel Josiah Parker. They enlisted in March of 1776 for a two year term.  ( The 5th was organized on February 28, 1776 at Richmond Court House to consist of ten companies from Lancaster, Richmond, Westmoreland, Spotsylvania, Northampton, Chesterfield, Henrico, Bedford, and Loudoun Counties.

The James Sanders/Oxley Bible, which is dated 1803, is transcribed on the web at Dave Sanders webpage. The website explains that the “pages were copied as found.”

There is a lot of information on these pages, mostly concerning the Sanders of the Gunnell Line. The Oxley’s were neighbors of the James and William Gunnell lines in the late 1760s and share a long association.

Loose pages, found with the Bible, reveal a George Sanders, son of the 1750 Daniel Sanders. 

Our previous research has provided proof that this is Daniel Jr. The senior Daniel was the son of Lewis Sanders Senior. Some researchers believe that George Sanders was of the Gunnel Branch of Sanders. We believe that he was not.  We are relying on the statement made by the locators of the Oxley Bible that the reference to George and his family was found in the loose pages with the Bible. Our research has not proven but we are leaning toward a proposition that Daniel was perhaps a cousin of James Sanders of the Gunnell line. 

From the loose papers found with the Bible:
“Daniel Sanders my father was born in the year of our lord 1750 March the 1st day, George Sanders
George Sanders was born in the year of our lord 1785 March the 10th day

Sarah Sanders formerly Sarah Money was born in the year of our lord 1789 September the 9th day
William Harrison Sanders the first son of the above was born in the year of our lord 1810 November the 11th day
James Harvin (Marvin ?) Sanders second son of the above was born in the year of our lord 1812 November the 26th day
Lewis Henry Sanders the third son of the above was born in the year of our lord 1814 November the 23 day
Perry Hampton Sanders fourth son of the above was born in the year of our lord 1817 May the 10th day

George Sanders son, John married Mary Oxley.

 Richard Sanders

On the Tithe List 1771-1774 Richard Sanders is in Cameron Parish, which would be located east of Goose Creek.

In 1771 Richard Saunders was a witness to a lease for William Kitchen.  Book D Page 242. Remembering the Daniel Sanders / William Kitchen connection, it would seem that Richard may be of the Lewis Sanders Line and probably born circa 1750.

The Orphan Francis Sanders, Son of Daniel

In 1769, the church wardens of Cameron Parish in Loudoun County, bind “Francis Saunders, an orphan of seventeen years of age, the twentieth of January last, to Gabriel Fox who agrees to teach him the trade of a carpenter”. Order Book D, 13 March 1769 Page 158. 

An orphan of whom?  He was born in 1752. The most likely candidate for his father would be the 1745 Daniel, the son of Lewis. Dated documents reveal it is probable that the orphan Francis, the 1750 Daniel,  the 1764 William Junior and perhaps James, and maybe Richard are all sons of the 1745 Daniel?

On the 1767 Tithe List, Ruth Sanders and Daniel Sanders are listed in the same household. This has to be Daniel’s widow and their son, the 1750 Daniel.

In 1770 the orphan, Francis Saunders, is listed as a tithable in the house of Gabriel Fox with a Negro, “Lon”. They are in the Cameron Parish on the list of William Carr Lane.

In 1771 both Francis Sanders and Fox were listed in the district of Simon Triplett.

In 1773 Francis is now twenty-one years old and is free of his bond to Gabriel Fox and is now listed with along with James Sanders, in the Cameron Parish, on a list taken by George Summers. William Sanders is also in this District.

In 1774 Francis and James Sanders are in the same household on the list taken by Geo. Summers. William is on the same list.

Upon reaching legal age and satisfying his obligation to Fox, it appears that Francis moved in with James and both were living on the Difficult Run property of William.

In 1775 Francis is listed, alone, in the Cameron Parish.  In subsequent years he is found on the lists of Jonathon Davis, 1779, Jas. Jennings in 1780 and Stanhope in 1781. Also in the 1780s, Francis and Daniel (his brother) are found on the roster of the 2nd Battalion of Militia and Tax district. By review of the tax and tithe records it is evident that there is only one Sanders family in Lane’s District between 1765 and 1770 and that was the descendants of the Daniel Sanders family. 

In 1776 Francis Sanders, Lewis Sanders Sr., and Lewis Sanders signed the Ten Thousand Name petition, in favor of removing religious restrictions.

Did Lewis Sanders Junior have a son Lewis?

Five years after Francis Sanders is bound to Gabriel Fox, in April 1774, Fox is awarded a bond for Dinah Fowler.  We can speculate, from the records viewed, that she will become Mrs. Francis Sanders. In September 1774 Gabriel Fox was issued a summons to report on the estate of Fowler.  Book F Page 497.  Gabriel Fox is clearly associated with both Francis Sanders and Dinah Fowler and when we review their association we come to the conclusion that Francis married Dinah Fowler.

 More evidence in support of this theory:

On 12 August 1779, Robert McClain and his wife Patience of Loudoun sold to John Benham and Francis Sanders of Loudoun 100 acres on the southeast side of Goose Creek Ridge, adjacent Hickman and Lee. Notice the name Benham. We believe he married the Sister of Dinah Fowler. In 1787 Francis sold the Goose Creek Ridge property and his wife, Dinah, is named:"...10 Sep 1787 Francis Saunders & wife Dinah of Loudoun to Henry Barb of Loudoun. Bargain and sale of 100ac on SE side of Goose Creek Ridge. Wit: Wm. Bronaugh Jr..."

Francis, the orphan, and Dinah then divorce and Dinah married Roger Tolle.

In 1788 Francis is listed on the personal property list in the 2nd Battalion, Loudoun, so he was still alive in that year.

“…Roger Tolle married again sometime after 1787 to Diana (Fowler) Sanders. He and Diana had no children, but they raised two of her nieces, Lizzie Benham  (Benham and Francis were partners in the 1779 Grant) who married John Burch, and Melinda who married Younger Davidson…” “…Roger died 3 Aug 1814 in Campbell County, Virginia. After his death, Diana moved to Barren County, Virginia with her stepsons, and she died there about 1835…”

Another Francis Sanders

In May of 1755,A Francis Saunders is listed in Lloyd Bockstruck’s book, “Virginia’s Colonial Soldiers” as being 20 years of age, (born 1735) 5'6" tall and a planter, born in Virginia, black Hair, brown complexion, in kneed.” He is listed in Stafford County.  Fairfax was formed in 1742 and our research has not covered Stafford subsequent to that period. (Refer. Gary Sanders).  He is surely not the “Quaker” Francis, born in the early 1720’s.  He could not possibly be the “Orphan” Francis, born in 1751.  Nor could he be the proposed son of the Beaverdam Francis whom we believe was born in 1755. At this point in time we cannot connect him to a line of Sanders; however his given name of Francis and the proximity to Lewis Sanders indicates he may well be a cousin.

Thomas Sanders

Who is he related to? Not a son of either James or William.  He could be a brother.  He could be another son of Lewis Senior.

He is on the tithe list of 1749.

In 1750, the Church Wardens of Truro Parish bind Spencer Williams to Thomas Sanders “to learn the trade of Shoemaker”. He would have been born prior to 1727.

1752 Thomas Sanders is a witness to the will William Richey. Page 186 Film 0031321.

In 1758 Thomas Sanders is listed in Henning’s on Page 218 in the militia of Fairfax.  George Sanders is also listed as a militia member.  Further research has uncovered that there were in fact more than Thomas and George on the Militia: we find a  Francis, James and John also listed.(from Lloyd Bockstruck's book, Virginia's Colonial Soldiers.

In 1760 Thomas Sanders is paid 500 Pounds of tobacco for the care of Catherine McCarty, his mother-in-law.  Page 79 Truro Vestry Minutes Film 1414.

In 1762 Thomas Sanders  has one title in James Hamilton’s list.  Neighbors are  Janney and Mason. This places him near or with James on the Tuscarora.

In May of 1763, a license was granted to Thomas Sanders to keep an ordinary at the ferry in Alexandria with Hugh West his security entered into bond. (Another West/Sanders family connection?)

In 1768 he was a defendant in a suit and it was stated therein “…he is not now, an inhabitant of the County of Fairfax…” (He was in Loudoun).

A Thomas is noted in the Phillip Sanders family on the Tithe List of 1768.

In 1772 he was a witness on a grant deed in Loudoun.

The Tuscarora Branch of Sanders: James , William, Phillip

Many notations of the Sanders surname are noted in the records of Fairfax.  The majority of the earlier records relate to James and William Sanders.  Several records mention Thomas Sanders and a couple note Phillip Sanders.

William, the patriarch of the Gunnell clan, was a fairly influential man.  Not only was he a very large landholder in Fairfax, in 1742 he gave two hundred and fifty acres to James and William Sanders, his sons in law.   See Exhibit “C.”

As early as 1753 he was noted as the inspector at the Falls of the Potomac Tobacco Warehouse, a very esteemed position. (Page 306 Film 0031321)

 Many have researched the perceived Sanders brothers, James, William, and Phillip.  A good summation of these efforts is found on Dave Sanders well researched and documented website. Dave documents this line of the Sanders family as hailing from Westmoreland County, Virginia.  His documentation begins with the will of Phillip Sanders in 1723.

William Sanders (wife Elizabeth), a son of the 1723 Phillip, wrote his last will and testament on 31 March 1726 and it was probated on 29 June 1726.

William's will mentioned his sons John, Phillip, James and William with daughters Mary and Ursula and Sarah and Elizabeth Saunders, both not yet eighteen years old at the time of the will. We believe William was born circa 1690. One may calculate that he had his children in fairly short order, after he became of marrying age.  He presumably could have been married at twenty years old or circa 1710.  Reaching even further into the possible facts, his children could have been born between 1711 and 1726 (date of his will). That would give us a range of birth dates of 1711 to 1726.

“…William Gunnell was granted 960 acres on the mouth of the Piney Branch in 1730 Stafford County…”  Prince William was formed from Stafford and then Fairfax was formed in 1742. The Piney Branch lies in Fairfax after Loudoun is formed.

William Gunnell also received a grant of 250 Acres on the 15th of January 1729 on the Four Mile Run which he gift deeded to his daughters.

On March 17, 1742, William Gunnell deeded 125 acres to his daughter Sarah and her husband, James. On the same day he deeded 125 acres to his daughter Elizabeth and her husband, William Sanders. The property was on the south side of the Four Mile Run, about two miles from the head thereof.  Fairfax Deed Book A Page 28.

On August 10, 1761, James leased 150 acres of land from Thomson Mason. The leased land was near the mouth of Tuscarora Creek of Goose Creek. Deed Book C page 787.

In the verbiage of James’ “lease for lives” was the requirement that three other family members were to be responsible for the rents for the length of their lives. They were named as Sarah his wife and two of his sons, Henry and Presley. Loudoun Deed Book C page 77.

On November 4, 1761, James and William sold this land for 100 pounds, English currency, to John Hurst. The Fairfax County Court required Nicholas Minor and Richard Coleman to interview Sarah and Elizabeth Saunders to find out if the ladies had freely given their consent for their husbands to sell the property, as this was the gifted land from their father. (Fairfax County, VA Deed book, 1761).

James Sanders leased the property from Mason and William, his perceived brother, apparently has moved prior to July 1761, across the River Potomac to Maryland. In July 1761 William Sanders Petitions the Court of Fairfax for a Judgment against John Watson.  The Court order stated that the petition would not be allowed as William is not a resident of this colony and he would not guarantee the court costs if he lost the action.

 James Sanders 1778 will identifies his family:

“… Gunnell…” and  “…my other sons viz John, Presley, Henry, Moses, Aaron, and Cyrus. I mean my whole estate including the lease on W. Mason's land wherein I now live and my land lately in North Carolina. For the true performance of which I do constitute make and ordain. Sarah Sanders, my dearly beloved Wife…”

From James Sanders Bible:
Sarah, wife born 1710
Mary (01 Jan 1739 - before 1778)
William (01 Mar 1741 - before 1778)
John (01 Feb 1746 - 05 May 1797)
Gunnel-James Twins (10 Mar 1748)
Barbary (20 Feb 1750 - ?)
Presley (03 Dec 1752 - 31 Aug 1823)
Henry (21 Feb 1755 - 19 Feb 1823)
Moses-Aaron Twins (24 Nov 1757
Cyrus (22 Dec 1760 - Nov 1822)

Several court cases involving William Sanders between 1761 and 1783 were viewed.  Unfortunately, there is no way to definitively connect them to a given family.

In 1768, on Page 210 of Book D, a William Junior is noted against a John McGann.   (William Sanders of the Tuscarora Branch is noted as dead in 1768).

 William Sanders is involved, over a  ten year period, with the Walter English estate.  Several court dates are noted.  In 1768 on page 74 of Order Book D the record shows “…the English case is dismissed as the Plaintiff is dead…”  This would be the Gunnel connection William Sanders.

William Sanders and Elizabeth Gunnel’s children:  (Per Dave Sanders’ site).
James born circa 1749 (Married Mary Gore in 1767).  Tithable in 1764?
Hardy, (bequeathed to Brother James).
William, born 1762, bequeathed to brother James in 1778?  Tithable age in 1778
Henry (lived with James and Sarah prior to 1778).

"…An entry in the Shelburne Parish, Loudoun County, Virginia records,10 May, 1778 reads: "The Church Wardens of Shelburne Parish bind Wm. Gunnel Sanders, aged 16 year the 16th of Feby, last to Edward Stephens to learn the trade of Blacksmith accg. to law…" (Refer Dave Sanders)

 Phillip Sanders

When William Gunnell executed his will in 1750, he named his daughters Sarah Sanders, (wife of James) and Elizabeth Sanders (wife of William).  Phillip Sanders is also named therein as a Witness.  What is not clear is if Phillip was a witness at the drawing of the will or if he witnessed prior to recording. In either case it appears Phillip Sanders was in Loudoun circa 1750-1760 and he is definitively connected to James and William Sanders. (Google books)

In 1761 Phillip Sanders locates in Fairfax County:
“…In Fairfax County, Virginia records, a certain Phillip Saunders leased a tract of Thomas Pearson's land directly adjacent to James and William Saunders's land. Nothing yet states this Phillip Saunders was James and William's brother, but this historical coincidence shouldn't be overlooked. (Mitchel, Beth).”  Refer. Dave Sanders. (original document needs verification)

On the 1767 Loudoun Tithe list we find Phillip Saunders and his tithable family members: Phillip Jr, William and Benjamin, which would be four tithables including Phillip. They are in the  district of John Moss Jr.  Which would be East of Goose Creek!

In 1768 on the Loudoun Tax List, Phillip Saunders is listed with William, Benjamin, Thomas and Phillip (Jr.?), all in the in the same household.  Image 01b1.

The Oxley family is next door to the James Sanders (Tuscarora) family in 1768. They are on the Tithe List of Josiah Chapman. Image 04a. The 1768 Chapman list has James Sanders Jr. with five tithables.

In October 1769 Phillip Sanders’ apparently died (we haven’t viewed his will), and his executor was Benjamin Sanders, his son. William Sanders was also named as a son. James Sanders was the court appointed appraiser.

This concludes the assemblage of records and expounding of theories regarding the Fairfax and Loudoun County Sanders, beginning in 1739 and concluding in 1783.

Jim Sanders
Ojai, California 
June 2009                                                                                                                                                       

Map Documentation

Exhibits "A" through "G" are in jpeg or tif  format and are accessible by licking on the links below.

A,  Lewis Sanders 1749 and 1764, Accotink and Popes Head; Daniel Sanders 1745 survey, chain carriers Francis; William Sanders 1764 grant; William Gunnell 1730 grant.

B,  Francis Sanders 1753 lease from Mahlon Janney; James Sanders lease from Thomas Mason 1761.

C,  William Gunnell's two grants on Four Mile Run and Pimmit's Run, 1729.

D,  Land grant of William Sanders, son of Daniel and grandson of Lewis, in 1761.

E,  Lease for life by Mahlon Janney in 1753 to Francis Sanders of Fairfax and his children, Aaron, Moses, and Sarah,  page 1.

F,  Lease for life by Mahlon Janney in 1753 to Francis Sanders, et. al., p. 2

G,  Lease for life by Mahon Janney in 1753 to Francis Sanders, et. al., p. 3

Files concerning Sanders genealogy that are available at this Web site:

Moses Sanders of Franklin County, Georgia, who died  29 March 1817 (pdf files of the work of Elden Hurst of Salt Lake City)

The Sanders  Family of Anson/Montgomery County, North Carolina 1757-1810 (an article by Jim Sanders of Ojai, California)

The Sanders of Stafford, Loudoun, and Fairfax in  Virginia 1739-1783 (an article by Jim Sanders)

Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century Montgomery County Original Land Grants (a map by Joe Thompson of Raleigh, North Carolina)

Barbara Radcliffe Rogers' Research on the Descendants of Isaac Sanders (1817-after 1880) and Calvin Newton Sanders (1874-1957)

Sanders Siftings, an exchange of Sanders/Saunders family research
, edited by Don E. Schaefer

Sanders of Old Tishomingo County, Mississippi(John Sanders and Abby Robins, Moses Marion Sanders and Cynthia Bruton)

Biographical Sketches, Sanders of Randolph and Montgomery and related families

Other files, articles, and pictures: Sanders of Randolph and Montgomery Web site.
--Gary B. Sanders


Antique map provided by RootsWeb. Graphic design from the freeware collection of Cari Buziak.