New Hanover
County Deeds
1743 - 1818
1819 - etc.

NC Taxpayers
1679 - 1790


1786 Census
Duplin County

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White Oak Plantation, N.C.
DNA: R1b1b2 / Group 7 / A Study of a Henry/Hendry line from the Isle of Arran, Scotland

When a male Hendry DNA donor looks at his results - at first, it's a bunch of numbers and terms never before heard. Then it suddenly sinks in - that "code" is identical* to his oldest direct male ancestor or progenitor. In other words, the Alexander Hendry who first stepped onto land at Cape Fear NC - had the identical* male DNA! The reverse is also true: all of the direct male descendants of Alexander Hendry carry the same male DNA! This means that all the donor's male relatives --uncles, male cousins, nephews... all share the same DNA. * - mutations do occur over time.

This is where accurate lineages are so very important. For this reason, when the first DNA results came in for an "alleged" Hendry line from Arran, Scotland, we realized that it would quickly become a "benchmark." We immediately challenged the lineage until we could fully rebuild (and document) the entire line -- with the ruthless rules of evidence.

From what we know of others from the Argyll Colony of 1739, many men, acting as a committee to inspect the new land, came over as early as 1729 and 1734, depending on the reporter. From The Heritage of Sampson Co, N.C. - of Alexander Hendry ". . . came to New Hanover Co NC about 1729." Several of those who came to inspect the new land, arranged to purchase (accept) land while still in N.C. A few of the men returned to N.C.; others, more than once. It is noted that those who served on the committees to inspect were the first to receive land in what would be called the Arygll Colony of 1739. Ten years later, when hundreds arrived in Wilmington, it was, often, the children (or other relatives) of the original committee who came and lived on that "owned" land.

It would take time to return to Scotland and ready the many families for a final voyage to the New World; in some cases, years. The Alexander mentioned as part of the committee, would have been a respected "elder" and, therefore 40-50 years of age, depending on health. (Estimated birth: 1679-1689) He may well have received land as other committee members did. The Alexander Hendry (b. abt 1710-1720 who married Flora Sellers) may have been one of the children of Alexander. And that would explain the confusion in the oral history -- "Alexander Hendry and Flora Sellers came from Arran in 1729." Flora would have been a child or not yet born (and in her late forties) when starting to have children.

That leaves the Charles and James Henry mentioned in those early deeds. They may have been granted that land after arriving in 1739 or much earlier as members of the committee. No other documents are available, at this time, to know for sure. We can only surmise that since Charles' property adjoins Alexander's - they may well have been brothers. James is only a few miles away; most likely, close kin - another brother or perhaps first cousin. Again, no evidence.

Since there is a question of whether Alexander Hendry (who married Flora Sellers) is the father of Alexander Hendry who married Thankful Cromartie - we will start our study with the latter. It is our incredible luck that this Hendry line is rich in documentation. The Cromartie Family Bible, still in existence today, records that Alexander was born the Isle of Arran, Scotland. The children's names and birthdates were gleaned from an old Hendry Bible, also surviving and was in the possession of Buddy Hubbard, then passed to cousin Dr. James Robinson of Wilmington NC who has it now (1992). The children's names were confirmed in Alexander Hendry's will of 1819. The will also confirmed them as members of the Black River Chapel -- showing two seats in Black River Chapel @ $16.00. Researcher Wynnette Tucker Welch is credited with the foundation of this lineage.

Passenger List of the "Pearl" There was an Alexander Hendry who sailed from Scotland to Cape Fear NC on the ship "Pearl" in December of 1767 and an Alexander Henry was allocated 100 acres of land 12 Dec 1767. On the same ship was a Catherine Hendry. One might quickly assume that this young woman was Alexander's wife, sister or mother; however, we learned that women used their surname (maiden name) on passenger lists during that time. It is important to note that no ages were given for the passengers. While the passenger list is interesting, it does not, in any way, represent any specific Alexander and/or Catherine Hendry. The Alexander Henry who was allocated land would suggest a person at least age 21. Could Alexander (md Cromartie) have made a return visit to his homeland in his advancing age? Certainly plausible. Could this be the Alexander Hendry who married Thankful Cromartie in 1784? He would have been a young lad and, most likely, too young to have been allocated land. Not plausible, at best.

This is interesting: 1767 New Hanover Co. Taxpayers includes Duncan, James, Richard, and William Hendry. We know that Duncan was a ship's captain from Campbeltown who returned to Scotland and died shortly thereafter. We've never heard of a Richard Hendry; and he's never shown again - the same pattern of Duncan, so we can assume that Duncan and Richard were related and both returned to Scotland. That leaves William and James. A James Henry is shown in a 1742 land transaction (re: Colvin's 300 a "above James Henry's line.") - possibly the same James. Even as late as 1763, James is shown in the description of a land grant to Elisha Sellers. As to William - this is an unknown or perhaps another relative of Duncan who returned to Scotland. So, where's Alexander and Charles mentioned in the 1743 land grant? Where is the Robert who so many insist was the progenitor of the White Oak Hendrys? While land grant documentation might be sparse; tax collection was too important. Documentation of taxpayers and collected taxes was even sent to (and archived in) England.

Note: along with land grants came exemptions from taxes. The goal for these land deals was to "populate" the area, so those men who could offer "families" (including their own) were given better terms. In some cases, the time period for exemption began when the men (and families) returned. This could explain why Alexander Hendry, who arrived in 1767, and was allocated 100 acres of land (Dec. 1767) didn't show paying taxes in 1767. The first Alexander Hendry (Henry) showing up as a taxpayer is in 1784, most likely not the original Alexander (if living, would be quite elderly) - but his son, Alexander Jr., aged about 24 in 1784. Alexander Jr.'s first child was born the folowing year. As time went by, fewer exemptions were granted; and when given, fewer years of expemption.

1784 in Capt Anders district, we find an Alexander Henry with 250 acres, a James Henry with 60 acres, and a William Cromartie with 350 acres. (In Capt. Johnson's district is a Robert Henry with 100 acres.) Both William Cromartie (father of Thankful, Alexander's wife) and Alexander Hendry appear in the 1800 Bladen Co NC census - Capt. Anders district. Wm. Cromartie is over 45 yrs. Alexander Hendry is between 26 and 45, with a wife same age, two sons under 10, one son between 10/16, three daughters under 10, one between 10/16, and five slaves. Based on the census data - Alexander Jr. would have been born (calc) between 1755-1774. We have changed the "abt" birthdate to something more plausible - that of 1760. We do this only because we have found no other evidence, of any kind, to even suggest his birthyear or years lived, as at June 2010..

In other words, we have known land owners: 1740's - Alexander & Charles & James; 1763 - James Henry; 1774 - Neil Henry; 1775 Robert Henry; 1778 John & Robert Hendry - yet the only taxpayers in 1784: Alexander, James and Robert Henry.

Aug 1789, Bladen Co NC - In land grant to Alex. McKethen, we find Alexander HenDry and John McMillan as witnesses. John McMillan was the husband of Margaret HenDry (b. abt 1745) - daughter of James Hendry Sr. (b. abt 1710) of Turkey Branch and Barbara McMillan. Margaret Hendry is a possible first cousin of Alexander Hendry b. 1760 who married Thankful Cromartie.

Important Note: The White Oak Plantation was located in the "Upper Black River District." There seems to be some confusion that Alexander's land was quite a distance from the Black River settlement. It was part of it.

At the turn of the century, Alexander Hendry began buying up land around White Oak Creek. Perhaps one of his last transactions was Nov 30, 1815: 100 acres on both sides of the prong of White Oak Swamp adjacent to James Hendry's land. His son, Alexander Hendry (born 1805), continued this legacy until his death (will) in 1869 whereupon his 3,447 acres were partitioned.

And so, with all the known sources addressed, we proceed to this study:

Alexander's line has DNA results represented by #112051 R1b1b2 Group 7 shown at the Henry DNA site.

1. Alexander Hendry b.~1760 Arran, Scotland; d. 4 Sep 1819 White Oak Plantation, New Hanover Co. (now Bladen Co.) NC. He married Thankful Cromartie (b. 1768 Bladen Co NC; d. 1843 White Oak Plantation) Their children:

2. i.   Robert W. Hendry Sr. b. 1785 New Hanover Co NC; d. 1859 Ethelville, Pickens Co AL. Md. Margaret Sellars.
3. ii.   Elizabeth Hendry dy b. 1786; d. 1788 New Hanover Co NC.
4. iii.   Catherine Hendry b. 1788 NC; d. 1866 Pike Co AL. Married Hiram Tucker.
5. iv.   William Cromartie Hendry b. 1790 New Hanover Co NC; d. 1854. Married Sarah J. Bannerman. ????
6. v.   Elizabeth Hendry b. 1792 New Hanover Co NC; d. 1815 NC. Married John Bordeaux.
7. vi.   Mary Hendry b. 1794 New Hanover Co NC; d. 1844. Married Isaac Cowan Lamb.
8. vii.   Thankful Hendry b. 1796 New Hanover Co NC; d. 1820. Married (1) Robert "Red" Henry of Turkey Branch; (2) John Matchett Bordeaux.
9. viii.   John G. Hendry b. 1799 New Hanover Co NC; d. after 1860 (prob) Arkansas. Married (1) Hannah Cooper; (2) Estelline Worthen
10. ix.   Hannah Jane (or Jean) Hendry b. 1801 prob. White Oak Plantation; d. (prob) Arkansas. Married Richard Miller Bordeaux
11. x.   Charles D. Hendry b. 1803 prob White Oak Plantation; d. (prob) White Oak Plantation. Married Mary Blount.
12. xi.   Alexander "Sandy" Hendry III of Colvin's Creek b. 1805 White Oak Plantation; d. 1869 White Oak Plantation. Married Sarah Caroline Matthews.
13. xii.   James Hendry dy b. 1808; d. 1817 in White Oak Plantation.

The next time we see Henry/Hendry records in this area is a land deed for Neil Hendry:

1774 Jul 25 Neil Henry GR 100a Es Black Rv; Turkey Branch of Colvins Cr, joining John Colvin. 26-120.   Application made 20 May 1772.   This grant is where the original James Henry and Alex. Colvin settled. Interesting that this 1774 grant was issued two full months before Neil arrived on the "Diana" in September of 1774; and the application was made two years prior. Or perhaps he had returned in 1774. And, this land is "Turkey Branch." We have a Neil (Cornelius) Hendry of Turkey Branch, born calc. 1747 who we know for sure is a "Turkey Branch" Hendry. More interesting, we know that his father is a James Hendry Sr. It would then seem logical to believe that James Hendry Sr. might well be the James mentioned in the March 1742 land grant for Alex. Colvin. Further land transactions clearly shows that Turkey Branch is adjacent to Alexander Colvin's property.

The following year, we find another land transaction:

1775 Dec 29 Wm Sloane to Robert Hendry [alleged son of Alexander Hendry / Sellers] - White Oak Branch H-296.   Original patent granted to Allen Sloane [Willliam Sloane's desc. father] 1754; witness: John & Neill Henry     The extract also shows the subsequent transactions of the same land in 1785 and again in 1795. The latter involves all but one Henry brother (Robert) relinquishing all rights to same to their "brother" Charles.   Was this the same Charles found in the early land deeds in the 1740's? No. But one would have to believe that he must have been close kin. No records of this early Charles Henry/Hendry have been found, to date; however, given the proximity of his land, we still hold the theory that Charles and (original) Alexander were peers - most likely, brothers. We never see anything about the earliest Charles Henry again. Perhaps he returned to Scotland and remained there or the records didn't survive.

1784 Taxpayers for Bladen Co. included Alexander, James and Robert Henry. We know that Alexander had (among others) sons named Robert and James - and by 1784, all his sons were over 21. Most likely, these Henrys were of the same family.

The Heritage of Sampson Co, N.C. claims Alexander and his wife, Flora, came to N.C. abt 1720. While it's possible that an older Alexander Hendry did travel there in 1720, it was certainly not the Alexander who married Flora - perhaps it was Alexander's father or uncle. Immigrating to the US: The tradition of the time was to send two or three male family members to the new land; other members of the family remaining at home. They didn't just gather up the wife and children and jump into the boat for a new land. The "men folk" would go and scout the area, secure land, etc they (or at least one of them) would have returned to the homeland and prepared the others for the passage. By the time the women and children arrived in the new land - it was ready for them. In some cases, taking care of things in the homeland could have taken some time - even years. Land and holdings had to be sold and/or negotitated with family who were to remain behind. You wouldn't want to burn your bridges... so, it was often that family remained in homeland either permantently or waited, in some cases, for a generation, to join the rest of the family. There were letters back and forth to keep the family abreast of loved ones at either end. This may have been the strategy of future Henry/Hendrys to N.C.

Scottish records show that there were two great waves of Scots who emmigrated to the U.S. during the 1700's. The first in 1737-1740, and then again in 1770-1775. By 1775, the King was so distressed at the numbers leaving Scottish soil and thereby increasing the size of the army of discontents in the Colony (U.S.), he made emmigrating later almost impossible. This coincides with the earlier Hendrys in NC.

Deed from Sloan to Robert Hendry 1775
and the transfer of the same land once again within the family.

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Last Updated: 19 May 2010