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Sunday, November 23, 2008

Family Myths: Col. John Luttrell

Col. John Luttrell is probably one of the most famous Luttrells in American History.  He was instrumental in the founding and settling of Ft. Boonesborough, was one of the partners in the Transylvania Company that employed Daniel Boone to blaze a trail into Kentucky and was a war hero during the Revolutionary War.  He died gallantly in combat at the Battle of Lindley Mills in North Carolina.

N Carolina (10)

On a recent trip to North Carolina I spent hours trying to locate the Lindley Mills Battlefield.  I found the actual Lindley Mills on Cane Creek [est.1755].  It is a functioning [and modernized] business, but I couldn't find the actual battlefield or marker.  This Marker depicts the event that led to the battle and death of Colonel Luttrell.

There are two myths that have existed concerning the Colonel, the lesser myth is that:

"...some believed that the stature of the Col. was a result of being connected to the Earls of Dunster and/or the Earls of Carhampton in England and Ireland [respectively]. But while he may have been descended from these families the evidence is that his stature may have been more self-obtained than due to any connections." 1999, gdl

The more unfortunate myth that surrounds Col. John Luttrell concerns his descendants.  The Fact over the Myth is that he had no descendants! 

I know of at least one family branch that has held a family reunion for over 50 years now and sincerely believes that they are descendants of Col. John Luttrell.

Where the confusion comes in is that they are confusing their John Luttrell [m.Winnefred Lawrence] of Fauquier County, VA. with Col. John Luttrell [m.Susannah Hart] of Orange County, NC.  The situation is even further complicated by the presence of a third John Luttrell [also m.Ann] in Fauquier County, VA. 

Both of the Johns in Fauquier County were cousins and both died within a year [1789/90] of each other and were survived by their widows at a much later date than the Colonel who died in 1781.

Colonel Luttrell died and left a widow as he mentions in his will dated c.1775 [probably in connection with his partnership in the Transylvania Company]: 

...be aplied towards defraying and paying all my just debts and lawfull debts and that one third of the residue of the said lands to be given unto my three brothers Thomas LUTRELL, Hugh LUTREL and William LUTRELL to them and their heirs and assigns forever. Secondly; my will and desire is that my beloved wife, Susannah Lutrell have the residue of my estate both real and personal until the time that my child or children that she is now great with shall arive to the age of twenty one years or get married whichever of them circumstances first happens. My will is that my estate be equally divided between them to them and their heirs or assigns forever, but if it should so happen that my wife should no be with child or that her child she is now great with should die before it arives to twenty one years of or gets married as before mentioned in that case it is my desire that after the sequence paid my brothers and my just debts satisfied my estate be at her disposal to do with as she pleases. In testimony where of I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 20th day of March 1775.

As it turns out the child that Susannah 'is now great with' must of died because in the much contested and documented estate settlement never mentions a child of the Colonel.  Susannah remarries a man of questionable character after the death of the Colonel and the estate becomes contested by the brothers.  No where is the child mentioned in papers filed in the settlement of the estate or papers dealing with the disposal of some of the property.  Susannah and her second husband [Dr. John Umstead] purchase some of the Kentucky land [willed by the Colonel to his three half brothers] from William and Hugh.  Thomas is not mentioned and some believe he was dead by this time.

The Colonel fails to mention another half brother Richard in his will [there is constant confusion over who is and isn't still alive] and in probate papers filled by Richard he appears unsuccessful in obtaining any of  the Colonel's estate.

Papers were still being filed as late as 1821 by Susannah and the doctor and still no mention of a child, who would have been in his forties and would have more than likely been relevant to any claims or disposal of the properties.

So as you can see there is no proof of offspring and the overwhelming documentation points to there being no offspring of the Colonel.  There is on the other hand established evidence of the other John Luttrells both outliving the Colonel and there descendants are well established.


LITTRELL and LUTTRELL HEROES In the WAR for American Independence [All Spellings]: By KARL DEWITT LITTRELL [decsd] with NANCY LITTRELL GOLDSBERRY

Kentucky Records, Vol II, "From Original Court entries", Compiled by Mrs. William Breckinridge Ardery, Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., Baltimore, Maryland.

Henderson County, Kentucky Deed Book A, Abstracted by Bettie Cummins Cook.

The Southern Genealogist's Exchange, Fall 1979, Vol. XX, #91.

The Transylvania Company and the founding of Henderson, Kentucky, By Archibald Henderson.

Kentucky Court of Appeals Deed Books, A-G, Volume I, by Michael L. Cook, C.G. & Bettie A. Cook, C.G., Cook Publications, Evansville, Indiana, 1985

Littrell Road: Annual Pilgrimage

Littrell Road is located in southern Lawrence County, Tn., running from the Lexington Highway[227] in Loretto south to Fairview Road. Nearby is Urban Lane which runs from Beartown Road [between 43 and the Fairview Community] to Fairview Road.

-click arrow to view the slide show and map-

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Making the Most of This Website/Blog

Anyone can read this blog and anyone can leave comments on 'postings' by using the 'comments' link.  If your interested in 'posting' your own articles or pictures just send us an email and we will send you instructions.

When you first arrive at this website you are on the Main or Front page. Articles/post on the Front Page are constantly changing:

  • When an article is first ‘posted’ it appears at the top of the main page.
  • When new articles are posted the older articles move down the page, this results in all articles appearing in reverse chronological order from top to bottom.
  • As new articles are added the older articles near the bottom of the page disappear.  They disappear from the main page to keep it from being endlessly long.  How many articles appear on the main page is controlled by the website editor.* 
  • When articles are posted to the website, at the authors discretion, they also appear on other pages so the articles still exist on these other pages.

Like the main page, articles on these other pages also appear at the top and move down the page as new articles are posted, but unlike the main page these articles never disappear unless the author specifically removes them.

How to view these other pages:

  1. Whenever viewing an article look for the subject ‘Label’ and click it to go to the page with all articles containing that subject Label. [For example on this article the ‘Label’ is at the top of the article and is: ‘About This Page’]
  2. Look in the Sidebar for an item/section titled 'Table Of Contents’ and you will see a listing of articles by subject or ‘Labels’.
  3. You can also isolate an article by itself by clicking on the title of the article.  This handy if you want to print an article out. When printing this way be sure to use ‘Print Preview’ and designate how many pages to print. This is important because printing all pages could result in 10 to 20 pages because the sidebars may extend past the actual article length.
  4. You can also isolate articles by the month or year they were posted by using the ‘LF.N Archives’ section in the sidebar. Above all else experiment. Click on the pictures in the ‘Picture Gallery’ or the links in the ‘LF.N Video Library’. You can always return to the Front Page by clicking on the banner at the top of every page.

We want this site to be interactive.  To this end it is set-up so that different branches of this family can have there own 'page' to exchange information, past, current, and future:

Look in the side bar for an item/section titled 'Table of Contents’ and the ‘Family Pages’ section and click on the subject "Page 3b: Redford 'Red' Littrell" Notice that you are now taken to another page very similar to the main page you were just on:  portions of the page remains unchanged from the main page; the header, sidebar and the items above and below the blue background articles/post, but the Articles/Post section [the light blue background] is different.  It now contains only Article/Post that are relevant to the Redford Littrell Family.*  It doesn't just contain a certain number of articles but also contains older articles that have disappeared from the main page.  This is the 'Redford Littrell Family' page.  By one or more members of your family branch participating your branch can have its own page too.

We hope you enjoy this website and we encourage you to tell your family about it.  Please leave comments and email us to be on our mailing list.

If you or someone in your family would like to contribute information, pictures, or articles please consider becoming a contributor to the site by mailing me your information, pictures etc. So email me if your interested and encourage your family members to do the same.

This website [actually its a blog, but we will refer to it as both a blog and a website] is made up of several ‘pages’ and each page contains several components, or elements:

  • A Header: The area at the top of the page containing the logo/banner stretching across the width of the page body.
  • The Side Bar: The narrow column on the side of the page.  On some website/blogs it may be on either side, or there may be more than one sidebar and they could be on one side, both sides or below the Main Body.
  • The Footer: The area at the bottom of the page which, like the Header, stretches across the width of the page body. Some blogs may not have a Footer.
  • The Main Body: The main body is the wide column. It contains many elements including the ‘Post’ or articles.
  • The Post: Post comes from the colonial and old England phrase ‘to post a letter’ which is the predecessor of the more modern phrase ‘to send a letter.’  This is where the title ‘Post Office’ comes from.  On this website the post are distinguished from the rest of the Main Body by their light blue background or frame like what you are reading now.  For simplicity sake the Post will more often than not be referred to as Articles or Post/Articles.

On this website [and all blogs] the Header, Footer and Sidebar will appear the same on all pages.  This is why when you go from one page to the next they may look the same at first glance.

Parts of the Main Body, with the exception of the ‘Post’ also remain the same.  The Header, Sidebar, Footer and Main Body are all controlled and edited by the Website Editor, Glenn Littrell [AKA GlennDL].  The Post, however is what changes from page to page.


*This is accomplished by the author of the article using Subject Labels when they post their articles.  Notice that at the top or bottom of every article their appears “Label:” followed by one or more items separated by commas.  These are labels the author chose to attach to the article so that it will appear on a certain page at this website.  This article has the label of “About This Site”, but some articles will have more than one label since they may be relevant to more than one subject.  For example The Redford articles will also have the “Missouri Littrells” label because Redford was a descendant of that Family line.  In other words any article can appear on several pages on the website.  Additionally all articles originally appear on the main page until they are replaced by newer articles as described above.


Remember, each page has a limit on how many articles can appear on that page. When you reach the bottom of a page use the “Older Post” link under the last article(ABOVE) to view/see if there are more articles.

You can use the “Newer Post” and “Older Post” links to navigate back and forth between pages.