An American Family History


The Cox Families of East Tennessee

  At the 1778 Washington County Court "the last will and testament of John Cox, decd., was duly proved by the oaths of Colonel Carter and Emanuel Carter, and the same to be recorded."  

The State of Franklin was an unrecognized, independent state in what is now eastern Tennessee. It was created in 1784 with the intent of becoming the fourteenth state. Its first capital was Jonesborough. It existed for about four and a half years and then North Carolina re-assumed control.

William Cox was born in 1755 in Fauquier County, Virginia. He was the son Abraham Cox and Elizabeth Arthur.

William Cox was living in Watauga in 1775.

William Cox was a delegate to the Provincial Congress August, 22 1776. He married Malinda Madden about 1782.

In 1780, William Cox served under Shelby at the battle of King's Mountain, where he was wounded.

In 1784, he was a member of the convention that organized the State of Franklin.

He received a land grant in Washington County, Tennessee in 1784.

A bond from William Cox to Charles Robertson dated 2 Feb. 1795,
relinquishing the following to Robertson:

bond on Martin Armstrong for 275 pounds Virginia money;
a deed on Mark Mettle for $1100; debt on William Thompson for 2 negroes and $200;
bond on David Allison for a negro,
agreement of Michael Harrison for 40 pounds;
debt on Charles Doke for 100 pounds; and all household furniture.

Void if Cox pays Robertson in two months.
Witnessed by William Willson and Joseph Cobb.

In 1809, Joshua Boring bought 399 acres on a branch of Brush Creek from William Cox near Jacob Bowman’s and Robert Young.

Slavery is an immoral system of forced labor where people are treated as property to be bought and sold. It was legal in the American Colonies and the United States until the Civil War.
The Holston River flows from Kingsport to Knoxville.
map by Kmusser

John Cox, Sr. brought his family to Sullivan County, Tennessee about 1774 from Baltimore County, Maryland

Edward Cox (married Sarah Meredith),
John Cox, Jr. (1758, married Tabitha Amis)
Thomas Cox (1761, married Rebecca Webb).

The Cox family helped to build Fort Watauga.

Edward, John, Jr., and Thomas Cox signed the 1777 petition of men living on the north Holston River complaining about the division of Fincastle County. They felt the line was not equitable and the court house was too far away.

In 1789 John received a land warrant in Sullivan County. At that time it was in North Carolina.

Fincastle County, Virginia was created in 1772 from Botetourt County and abolished in 1776. It was divided into Montgomery, Washington and Kentucky Counties.

The first European settlements in Maryland were made in 1634 when English settlers created a permanent colony.

Lieutenant Edward Cox was born in 1758 in Baltimore County, Maryland.

When he was a boy his parents moved to Sullivan County, Tennessee which at that time was Washington County, North Carolina.

He married Sarah (Sallie) Meredith.

Abraham Cox (1782, married Mary Cox),
Elizabeth Cox (1784, married Vincent),
Jane Cox (married McAllister),
Catherine Cox (married Dungan),
Samuel Cox,
Jacob Cox,
John Cox (1802).

In 1774, Edward Cox built a two-story double hewn log house with a breezeway in the middle. Two chimneys with four fireplace openings were on both ends of the house.

Edward Cox served in the Revolutionary War militia from 1775 to 1781 He served under Captain Robison, Colonel Bletcher, Colonel Isaac Shelby, Colonel Joseph Martin, and Captain Wallace.

In 1784, Edward received a warrant for land in Sullivan County, Tennessee. At that time it was in North Carolina.

North Carolina land grant, Oct. 8, 1787, for 640 acres on Mill Creek.

On February 12, 1794, Edward Cox of Sullivan County, Tennessee gave his brother, Thomas Cox, in Davidson County, Tennessee, power of attorney for handling land transactions.

Indenture between Thomas Rockhold, Sheriff of Sullivan County, and Edward Cox of Sullivan County. Whereas the previous sheriff, by virtue of a writ of execution and attachment dated 24 Dec 1799, in a suit Edward Cox vs. John Chrisman, exposed to public sale lots No. 8 and 9 in the town of Middletown. Edward Cox was the highest bidder, $56, but the former sherriff failed to convey the land to Cox. The present sheriff, John Rockhold, now conveys John Chrisman's right and title to the lots to Edward Cox. Sullivan Co., Court 11 July 1808. [Sullivan Co., Tenn., Deed book 5:133]

February 17th 1795 Edward Cox vs John Carney Case A jury sworn, to wit:
1. Thomas Hunt
2. Wm York
3. Jacob Brown
4. John Campbell
5. Johns Parker
6. Jesse Humprheys
7. John McInturff
8. Saml Woods
9. Robert Young
10. Saml Tate
11. John Shannon
12. Wm Greenway

Found for the plaintiff $32 2/3 damages and costs.

Edward Cox witnessed William Carr's and Abraham Cross' pension applications.

In 1835, he appeared on the Sullivan County pension list.

Edward Cox died in 1850.

The Battle of Kings Mountain was a decisive battle of the American Revoluton. It took place on October 7, 1780, nine miles south of the present-day town of Kings Mountain, North Carolina. The Patriot militia defeated the Loyalist militia commanded by British Major Patrick Ferguson.
  David Cox, John Cox, Sr. and John Cox, Jr. appeared in Captain Looney's list in 1774.  

Pittsylvania County, Virginia was formed in 1767 from Halifax County. In 1777 the western part became Henry County.

James Cox was born about 1760 in Henry(was Pittsylvania) County, Virginia. His parents were John Cox and Sarah Tweedy.

Dorcas Cox (1798),
George Rhea Cox (1789),
Mayberry Tucker Cox (1790),
Susannah Cox (1794),
James Cox,
Mary Cox (married Nicholas Hale),
John Cox
Sarah Cox (married Obediah Strong),
Fannie Cox (married Gideon Hale),

James Cox received a land grant in Washington County, Tennessee in 1790.

  John Cox, Sr. and Jr. were from Pittsylvania County, Virginia. and in 1774-5 were living next to the Blevins family.  

John Cox was born about 1762 in Virginia.

He married Mary Jobe. She was the daughter of Jacob Jobe.

Their children included:
Sarah Cox (1789),
John Cox (1791),
Jacob Cox (1793),
Abigail (Abba) Cox (1799, married Nathan Jobe),
Hannah Cox (1801 married William K. Hulse),
Lydia Cox Hale (1805),
Moses Cox (1805) and
Abraham Cox.

  Lieutenant John Cox, David Cox, John Cox, Jr. and John Cox, Sr. were in Looney's Company in 1776  
  William Cox was born in Virginia on May 24, 1770. He was the son of Thomas and Sarah Cox. William married Mary Ruth Boring. and Mary Dillard. He passed away in August, 1814 in Tennessee, USA.  



John Cox was on the 1778 tax list of Washington County.

John Cox, Sr. and Jr. signed the 1777 petition of men living on the north Holston River complaining about the division of Fincastle County. They felt the line was not equitable and the court house was too far away.


Abraham Cox was on the 1778 tax list of Washington County


James Cox was born in 1774. He married Sarah Jackson.

William Thompson Cox (1811, married Phoebe Ann Bacon)
Calvin R. Cox (1815, married Phoebe Barron)

  Godfrey Cox was born about 1790. He married Magdalene Smith  
  Richard Cox was on the 1792 Washington County, Tax List  



Page 1 James Cox
19 Oct 1777
Washington County state of North Carolina.

To my sons Abraham and William: 2 negro men slaves named Peter and Frank. The whole of my lands where I now live.
To daughter Jane: 50 pounds in cash.
To daughter Agness: 1 negro man named Charles.
To Jane and Agness: all of my stock and moveable estate.
His father left him some negro slaves which were never received. If they are recovered they are to be equally divided among his children.

Executors: Friends Abraham Cove, William Cox Jr., John Sevier.
Witnesses: John Carter, Christopher Cunningham, Emmanuel Carter.


from Washington County, VA Survey Records Abstracts 1781-1797, submitted to the USGenWeb archives by Rhonda Robertson

Page 343 - Major Charles Cox - 430 ac - treasury
warrant #2014 dated January 25, 1782 - on the waters
of Trading Creek, on both sides of the Kentucky road
beginning corner to his settlement right - January 6, 1786

Page 363 - Jester Cox - 100 ac - treasury warrant
#19650 - on the waters of Glade Creek, a north of
Powell's River - beginning near the head of said creek
- December 9, 1785

Page 363 - Jester Cox - 85 ac - treasury warrant
#19650 - on the head waters of Mounts Creek, a north
branch of Powells River


Washington County Marriages

Cox, C married BILLINGSLEY, Sarah Ann on 03-FEB-1839
Cox, Caleb married Carriger, Ann on 25 January 1825
Cox, Calvin married BARNS, Phoebe on 23-FEB-1840
Cox, Caroline married CRAWFORD, Hugh A on 16-DEC-1838
Cox, Charles married ELSEY, Rebeca on 06-APR-1827
Cox, Charles married FITZGERALD, Malinda on 12-OCT-1832
Cox, Elizabeth married GATES, John on 24 January 1833
Cox, Hannah married HARSHBARGER, Elijah on 14 January 1838
Cox, Isaac married HELLIN, Mary on 10-OCT-1819
Cox, Isaac married LESSENBERY, Sarah on 28-MAR-1818
Cox, J H married COPAS, H E on 17-FEB-1839
Cox, John married GRAY, Ruth on 20 August 1817
Cox, John married TEMPLIN, Priscilla on 30 January 1810
Cox, Joshua married ENGLISH, Nancy on 13-OCT-1831
Cox, Loyd A married ENGLISH, Sarah on 09-SEP-1830
Cox, Marie married DAVAULT, David on 22-FEB-1838
Cox, N married ELSEY, I on 21-NOV-1839
Cox, Susannah married DEPEW, James on 22-DEC-1813


Pg. 129.
George Cox
s/23 Aug., 1812.
pr. Aug. 1814.
Son Drury Cox,
son James Cox,
son Absolem Cox,
dau. Mary Johnston,
dau. Patsy Dameron,
dau. Elizabeth Moss, her four chn., to wit. John, Patsy, Rebecka, & Hugh
Chn. of son John Cox by his wife Polly Cox, who was Polly Murry.
Samuel Allen to act as guardian to said Chn. of son John.
Exrs. Mathew nuke & John Harvy.
Wit. William Gowen, John Trousdale, George Rison. (Pg. 157. Inv. 25 May 1814.)

Deery Inn
The Deery Inn
Blountville, Tennessee

From Who’s Who in Tennessee, Memphis: Paul & Douglass Co., Publishers, 1911; transcribed by Kim Mohler

Cox, John Worley
Physician and surgeon; born Blountville, (Sullivan Co) Tenn., Dec. 8, 1847;
Scotch-German descent;
son of A. J. and Harriet A. (Worley) Cox; father’s occupation Clerk of the Co. and Circuit Courts of Sullivan Co., Tenn., 20 years;
paternal grandfather John W. Cox, paternal grandmother was a Miss Barnstutter prior to her marriage;
maternal grandfather James B. Worley,
maternal grandmother was a Miss Shell prior to her marriage; educated at Jefferson Academy, Blountville, Tenn.;
received degree M.D. March 4, 1884;
in early life was a farmer, later taught school;
married Lelia Sue Hoskins June 7, 1882;
member A.M.A. and State Medical Society;
Republican; member U.S. Board of Medical Examiners, Secretary of same; Lieut. and Asst. Surgeon U.S.V.I., served in Porto Rico 1898-9; commissioned as 1st Lieut. and Asst. Surgeon by R.A. Alger, Sec. of War, and William McKinley, President, June, 1898; member of Presbyterian church; engaged in the practice of medicine at Johnson City, Tenn.

Watagua Pioneer Neighbors

Johnson City, Tennessee is in Washington, Carter and Sullivan Counties. It was known as Brush Creek for the Creek than runs through it.

Colonial Maryland
Colonial New England
Colonial Virginia & West Virginia
Quakers & Mennonites
New Jersey Baptists
German Lutherans
Watagua Settlement
Pennsylvania Pioneers
Midwest Pioneers
Jewish Immigrants

©Roberta Tuller 2018
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