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Bray Family



Data on this page


Bray in the Virginia Colony


shows that the Bray were long established in the county of Jamestown-City and Williamsburg and held lands as far away as Essex and King and Queen County. One David Bray appears to have moved into Spotsylvania County and a Thomas Bray into Caroline County. In this Jamestown-related Bray group is a married to a Philip Johnson and we see in 1790 that a daughter of Henry Bray marred a Johnson also.


See Also:



A William Poe in Chatham County, North Carolina was married to Elizabeth Bray, daughter of Henry Bray. It appears that William Poe who married Elizabeth Bray is part of a group that migrated to the Siler City, NC area from Culpeper County, VA and is probably a son of William Poe and wife Lydia who left Caroline County for Culpeper County in 1737.



We know William Poe and Lydia had a son William Poe “JR” best by this Culpeper County, VA record:


28 May 1753.

pp. 130-32

William Beverly of Blanfield, Essex County, Esqr. to William Poe of Culpeper County, planter. Lease of 220 acres where he now dwells, part of William Beverly's tract of land called Wakefield . . on the north side of the south river called Burgess River . . . to the mouth of the river . . up the Hedgeman River  . . mouth of a branch . . . surveyed by Richard Young, surveyor . . saving liberty of making a path or rolling road through the land where it shall be necessary for and desired by one or more tenants of William Beverly.

For lives of William Poe, Lydia his wife and William their son.

Yearly rent on 7 December at Fredericksburg or Falmouth Warehouse of 1000 pounds of tobacco. If Poe shall work more than four tithables besides himself, for each to pay 200 pounds of tobacco additional, and shall not keep thereon any undertenant, shall plant an orchard of one hundred apple trees thirty five feet asunder and two hundred peach trees twenty feet asunder, within a good fence.

W. Beverly


W. Russell

Robert Coleman

John Gough

21 June 1753. Proved by Robert Coleman and John Gough

20 June 1754. Proved by William Russell, Gent.





William Poe, son of William and Lydia seems to have moved to the Siler City, Chatham County, NC area by 1771 where he and others are named in a muster roll. These men may all be from Culpeper County and likely brothers


Colonial soldiers of the South, 1732-1774.  Murtrie June Clark

Baltimore, MD : Genealogical Publishing Co., 1983.


Chatham Co Military Returns 9-23-1772 Muster Roll of Capt. Joab Brook's Co.


19                    Pvt                              Benjamin Poe

27                    Pvt                              William Poe

53                    Pvt                              John Poe

104                 Pvt                              Charles Poe (later listed as infirm and exempt from taxes)




The Bray family was associated very early with the Virginia Colony. As early, in fact as Jamestown in 1629



 Among the many records for Bray in Virginia, we see Bray men settling in King and Queen County by the late 1600s. Portions of this county were joined with portions of old Essex County to form Caroline County in 1728. The lands of Samuel Poe and those of the later William Poe and wife Lydia ended up in Caroline County. It is noteworthy that the Richard Bradford family also settled King and Queen County and two of his daughters married sons of Simon Poe SR of Caroline County.


See records on this page:


I’ve not researched the King and Queen or other counties in this part of VA for Bray records yet, but surely this is the same Bray family that we see later marrying into the Poe family of the Culpeper County area (including Fauquier County)


The Battaile and Taliaferro families were in the area of Essex Caroline where Poe settled. Here we see Samuel Poe witnessing a Spotsylvania County deed in the same parish where a David Bray acquired land.


Spotsylvania County, Virginia

typ patent --- Orange County file

ref VPB 13 p336-337

dat 16 Dec 1727

to David Bray of James City County Gent.

con œ23.S10 

re 4675a on both Sides the Little Mountains on the S Side the Rapidan in Saint Georges parish in Spotsylvania County

loc -25377 17484 F127 L0 P255

pt A) Corner hickory and 2 White Oaks of Mr. John Battailes on the SW side a Branch by the Foot of a Mountain

ln N58W; 1250P; John Battailes

pt B) 3 pines and a Red Oak on the SE Side a small Branch

ln S33W; 245P;

pt C) 4 hickories standing on falling Ground

ln S80W; 192P;

pt D) 4 great pines on a hill Side

ln SW; 260P;

pt E) 3 small Red Oaks between a great White Oak Spanish Oak and poplar Standing on the E Side of Taliaferro's Run a Corner of Major Williams Todds

ln S60E; 1150P;

pt F) a Stake between Angular White Oaks on Falling Ground a C. of the Sd Todd in the back line on the S Side the Mountains

ln NE; 55P;

pt G) 2 White Oaks and hickory on the NE Side a Branch below a small hill

ln E; 154P;

pt H) 2 White Oaks on Falling Ground and lastly

ln N50E; 475P;



Virginia County Records SPOTSYLVANIA COUNTY 1721-1800


DEED BOOK C 1734-1742

page 155


2 June 1741

page 155

John (X) Smith of St. George Par. Spotsylvania Co. and Margaret his wife to John Farish of St. Stephen's Par., King and Queen Co. pounds 60 curr. 400 a in Spots Co. a patent 30 June 1726. Robert Farish Jas. Martin Samuel Poe, 7 July 1741




Fauquier County Co. VA Marriage Bonds


David Murphy to Lidia Poe 27 Dec 1797 dau. of Samuel. Witness: William Poe


Stephen Poe to Peggy Glendenning  20 Oct 1799 Bond: William Ellis


William Bragg to Nancy Bray 8 May 1803 Bond: Timothy Brady   (I suspect this is Bray and not Brady)


Joseph Bragg to Triphana Poe 23 May 1803 daughter of William




Chatham County, North Carolina




17 June, 1790

Will of Henry Bray, dated 17 June, 1790 - no probate date.
Chatham Co., NC, Record of Estates, pg. 4b, 5
NC State Archives film # C.002.500
In the Name of God amen I Henry Bray of the County Chatham and State 
North carolina being weak and inform of Body but of perfect mind and 
memory thanks be God Calling to mind the mortallity of my Body and 
knowing that it is appointed once for all men to die do make and ordain
this my last Will and Testament, that is to say, principally and first 
of all I give and recommend my soul into the hands of Almighty God that 
gave it and my Body I recommend to the earth to be burried in a decent 
christian Burial at the discression of my Executor and as touching such 
worldly Estate wherewith it has please god to bless me in this life I 
give and dispose in the following manner_____ 
Item I give and bequeath to Mary Bray my dearly beloved wife one Bed 
and furniture and her Saddle as her own property and the third part of 
all the rest of my household goods Chattles and moveable Estate as her
own property and the use of my home Plantation so long as she continues
to be my widow or as long as she pleases to live thereon except she 
Item I give and bequeath to my son Edward Bray the sum of Twenty 
Shillings to him and his Heirs forever; ___ Item I give and bequeath to 
my son Henry Bray my Land and all the remaining two thirds of my Estate 
with his paying out of my Estate the sum of five pounds to each of my 
Daughters Vix. Sarah Ramsour, Mary Johnson, Catharine Jones & Elizabeth 
Poe) to him & his heirs forever_ I hereby constitute make and ordain my
Son Henry Bray Sole Executor of this my last Will and Testament and I 
do hereby utterly disallow revoke and disannull all and every other 
former Testaments, Wills, Legaces, bequests and Executors by me in any 
wise before named willed and Bequeathed ratifying and confirming this 
and no other to be my last Will and testament In Witness whereof I have
hereunto set my hand and seal this seventeenth day June one Thousand 
seven hundred and ninety
Signed Seal'd and pronounced 
in presence of
Thos Ragland
Henry Bray Signed Henry (his "H" mark) Bray {Seal}
A Copy Test
John Ramsey C.C.









Images of originals:




Morgan County, Indiana Notes on Poe and Bray



Maryland Calendar of Wills, Volume 4, page 15


Pierce Bray, Pocomoke, Somerset Co.,

14th Oct., 1713

4th June, 1714.

To Jno. White and Archibald White, orphans of Archibald White of this Co., 62 A., part of "Corke."

" son Edward and hrs., residue of lands. 2 daus., Mary and Martha, to live with him.

" wife and 3 child. afsd., personal estate.

Exs.: Wife and son afsd.

Test: Jno. Henry, Wm. Jones, Sarah Marshall, Robert Nairne.

            13. 711.





Edward Bray, 'Of Pocomoke, Somerset Co.,

5th May, 1716;

28th Feb., 1717.

Testator desires that 62 A. be made over to his bros., John and Archibald White, by his sister Mary Bray, in accord­ance with will of testator's father.

" bros. John and Archibald White and to William (son of sd. Archibald), personalty.

" sister Martha Bray, all personalty left testator by his father, Pierce Bray, above legacies excepted.

" sister Mary Bray, extx., real estate.

Test: David Ritchie,

Henry Scholfield,

James Bratten, Jr. 14. 571.