Thomas Terry Family
England and South Carolina

Thomas Terry
b. 31 May 1750 perhaps in Guisborough, (N. Yorkshire), England
d. 15 Nov 1820 [Ruth Miller Davis records]
before Nov 22, 1820, Fountain Inn, Greenville Co., S. C.#
buried: Pisgah Methodist Church Cem.(Terry's Chapel), Fountain Inn, Greenville Co., S.C

1st m. Elizabeth Harrison,
b. before 1760 Yorkshire, England
d. @ 1786 - 91 of possibly Yellow Fever in South Carolina
John Harrison's sister
father: perhaps Wm. Harrison  brother, John Harrison of Yorkshire, England

 2nd m. Rebecca Nancy "Ann" McDowell 1791 South Carolina
b. Mar.14, 1764 (possibly Dublin), Ireland
d. 3 Jan. 1852 at the home of her daughter, Rebecca Meares#
buried: Pisgah Methodist Church Cem.(Terry's Chapel), Fountain Inn, S.C
father: ? John McDowell of Ireland

Thomas Terry came from (perhaps Yorkshire), England about 1785 and settled near Fork Shoals, South Carolina which was identified as "New Ireland" by some locals at the time. If the birth date is correct he would have immigrated at age 40. With his brother-in-law, John Harrison( also from Yorkshire), he organized a Methodist Church known as Terry's Chapel. A new church was built in 1843 and again in 1904, now known as "Pisgah." The Pisgah Methodist Church is in Fountain Inn, South Carolina. Some Terry family members still live in the area and are still deacons in the church.

His father: John Terry- England
His mother: Elizabeth Day

Child with Miss Elizabeth Harrison
Nancy Terry# b. c1780 probably in England d.  m. (probably) Thomas Matthews# about 1799 (b. about 1773 Laurens Co., SC. d. 24 June 1836 Gwinnett Co. GA)
?possibly two children
b. c1782 probably in England d. about 1786 -1791
of Yellow Fever in So. Carolina
? possibly Alice Terry# christen: 30 Oct 1785 Guisborough, York, England [LDS records]
d. after 1830 m. (probably) James Alexander#
Elizabeth Terry*# b. 12 Sept 1784 in England d.15 Jan1821 in Ga m. Solomon Hopkins Jr.# 13 March 1802 Laurens Co., SC.
(b. 4/6/1781 in Perquiman's Co., NC - d.11/14/1858 in Gwinnett Co., Georgia)
Thomas Terry
christen: 28 Dec 1787 Guisborough, York, England [LDS records]
 perhaps one of the two children who died by 1791

Children with Rebecca Nancy "Ann" McDowell
Mary Terry b. Jan. 19, 1794 SC d. m. John Anderson 
(b. 1784 - d. 1837) son of James Anderson and Nancy Ewing(ten children)
John McDowell Terry@  b. July 4, 1795 SC d. Sept 7, 1853 SC# m. Mary Graydon
(b. 1800 SC, d. 1879 Hamburg,  Ark) dau. of Thomas Graydon
Jabez(Jabus) Terry@ b. Jan 29, 1797 SC d. May18,1853# m. Eliz F. Ashmore
b. Nov 22,1801 d. Dec 14,1889#
Asbury Terry@ b. Oct 13, 1800 d. by 1850 1m. Nancy Graydon 15 Mar 1828 (b. c1800 d. c1829) dau. of Thomas Graydon
2m. Winnie E. Graydon c1832 (b. 1806 d. 1889 Dallas, TX)
Rebecca Terry@ b. Nov. 1802 SC d. Aug. 13, 1890 SC#  m. William Meares b. 9/23/1797 d. 4/28/68 SC#
Gaston Terry@ b. Aug.4, 1804 SC d.Jul 25,1881 SC#  m. Mary (b.1807 England d. 1878#)
Charles Terry@ b. Mar 13, 1807 SC d. Feb. 10,1875# m. Permelia McElroy
b. May 14, 1815 d.Apr 27,1896#
Hannah Terry@ b. Oct. 1809  d. 5 Jun 1882, Calvert, Robertson,Tx m. Charles Davenport/Devenport
Pamalia Terry  b. 1811 SC  d. perhaps by 1816 .
1750 - Thomas Terry is probably born in Yorkshire, England, where his brother-in-law was from.  George Terry, Thomas' brother who immigrated about 1805, did come from England according to the declared births place of his children in 1850 and 1860 census.  

1780's or '90's- he first marries John Harrison's sister, Elizabeth Harrison, of Yorkshire, England. [The History of the Pisgah Methodist Church, 200th Homecoming, Fountain Inn, S.C. May 1991]

I'm still uncertain whether I have the correct marriage records for Thomas but the dates fit perfectly.  I hope its more than just a nice coincidence but this may take years to prove.   Searching in Yorkshire marriage records I found these marriages:
             Thomas Terry     m.  Ann Harrison                      17 Sept 1779 Guisborough, Yorkshire, England. 
             Elizabeth Terry     m.  Christopher Sherwood          18 Dec 1775 Guiborough, England
             William Terry       m.   Jane Harrison                       10 Feb 1789  Guisborough, England
             Mary Harrison      m.  John Alderson                       21 Apr 1800  Guisborough, England
             Thomas Harrison  m.  Elizabeth Harrison                01 Jan 1787    Guisborough, England
             Moses Harrison     m.  Mary Petch                           15 May 1798   Guisborough, England
                                     [LDS Marriage Records, Yorkshire 1775-1812  file# M105372]

According to the Hopkins family records, Elizabeth Terry was the first and only child of Elizabeth Harrison Terry. Because of the birth date she must have been born in England and probably came over with her mother and uncle John Harrison. [email of 12 Mar 1999 from"Daniel Gannon"] I have not been sucessful in finding a record for any Thomas Terry marrying a Harrison in Yorkshire.  That, of course, doesn't mean there wasn't a marriage. 

1785 - Robert Y. H. Terry, the grandson of Thomas Terry, says that his grandfather came over about 1785 ahead of the family. He claims that Thomas had a wife and five children that he had left in England. The rest of the family landed in Charleston a year or so later. Charleston was under an epidemic of Yellow Fever and even though they left in great haste by wagon train they were struck with the disease while only half way to Greenville County. "All died except for one little girl 3 or 4 years old Nancy who marries a Mr. Matthews or Mathis. She died young leaving one little girl named Nancy who married a Mr. Woodside. " The facts of at least three surviving children came from this earlier marriage are verified by the probate records of 1820. [letter of R. Y. H. Terry, photocopy from Mary Vance Norfleet]

about 1780-88- Rebecca "Ann" McDowell comes to South Carolina from Ireland. She is also listed as from Ireland in the census records at the age of 80 in the 1850 census. She may have immigrated with her parents, probably John McDowell, from Ireland at about age 24. So far I have not found a record for the immigration date or ship manifest with them included. [Holcomb 260]

 R. Y H. Terry claims his grandfather met Ann McDowell in Charleston after the death of his family. She was to have immigrated with two brothers.  John McDowell, the rich merchant, was said by R. Y. H. Terry to have been her uncle not her father. She was supposed to have come from Dublin, Ireland. [letter of R. Y. H. Terry, photocopy from Mary Vance Norfleet]

 "He (Thomas Terry) comes to the USA looking for a new home. (ec note - I suspect he was already an ordained minister in the Methodist Church of England and intended to come here to spread the word of God.) He wandered several months before he settled on a place near Fork Shoals in Greenville Co. South Carolina, what is now known as the 'Old Terry Place.'" He immediately sent for his wife but she was not allowed to leave by her parents unless her brother, John Harrison, accompanied her. "They traveled for some weeks until they reached Little River in Laurens Co. There Mrs. Terry become desperately ill and died in a few days. John Harrison did not turn back but pushed on to the home of Thomas Terry where he told of the fate of his sister. " [The History of the Pisgah Methodist Church, 200th Homecoming, Fountain Inn, S.C. May 1991]
Unfortunately nothing was written in this history to indicate that there were any surviving children.
1791 - "In the year 1791 Thomas Terry married again to Miss Rebecca McDowell who was the daughter of a wealthy merchant of Charleston. John Harrison, his brother-in-law, married Miss Susan McDowell also of Charleston."[ The History of the Pisgah Methodist Church, 200th Homecoming, Fountain Inn, S.C. May 1991]

 "He established a small Methodist Church which for many years was known as Terry's Chapel. This church was made of hewn logs. The cracks were filled with mud and the windows were made of oiled paper. Just how many members attended this church is not known, but it is reasonably certain that services continued uninterrupted until it became necessary to construct a larger and more adequate building." [The History of the Pisgah Methodist Church, 200th Homecoming, Fountain Inn, S.C. May 1991]

"John McDowell of Charleston was a friend of the Harrisons and the Terrys and later two of the McDowell daughters married: Susan McDowell m. John Harrison (Bro. in law of Thomas Terry) Rebecca McDowell m. Thomas Terry as his second wife. [Note 94, pg 14, Leanardo Andrea Notes]

1791, September 26 - Thomas Terry buys land from James Cook.

James Cook, gentlman, by his attorney Minor Winn of Winsborough, SC to Thomas Terry, planter of Greenville Co., SC lease and release for L66.1 sterling paid to Minor Winn sold 426 acres; two thirds of 640 acres granted 16 july 1784 to James Cook on a branch of Saluda River bordering land laid out of the Henry Domeny on NE, Major Winn on NW and vacant land on other sides.  Signed: M. Winn.  Witness: R. Stark, David Peden & Alexander Peden.  Recorded 20 April 1796.  [Greenville Co., SC Deed Book D, p. 238-9]

1793, May 9 - Thomas Terry buys more land, this time from James Floid.
James Floid of Washington District to Thomas Terry of same for L20 sold _____ acres; border 'Degrafhen Reed,' Floid's fence & crosses a branch granted 4 December 1786 by Gov. William Moultrie to James Floid.  Signed:  James 'C his mark' Floid.  Witness: Owen Jenkinds & James Floid.  Recorded 16 April 1796.  [Greenville Co., SC Deed Book D, p. 224]

1794 - Greenville County, S. C., Deed Bk. "D" 1794-1798
In Deed BK. E. there appears Benjamin Terry, Joseph Terry, Nancy Terry and Thomas Terry.

1800 - South Carolina.  In these records we see Thomas Terry and perhaps his brothers and their children living nearby. 

Around 1800, it is believed, that George Terry, Thomas' brother, immigrates to South Carolina. He does not show up on the 1800 census. He probably brings with him a couple of children.

1801, Sept. 19.- "Francis Asbury, known as one of the founders of Methodism in the United States visited Terry Chapel near the Reedy River. "  Asbury Terry is, probably named after him, is born in Oct, 1800.
[The History of the Pisgah Methodist Church, 200th Homecoming, Fountain Inn, S.C. May 1991]

1802, April 22 -

Burwell Massey of Greenville District to Thomas Terry of same for $200 sold 150 acres on Flat Rock Branch waters of Reedy River, part of 1759 acres granted 6 November 1786 to John Peden who sold part to Burrell Massey.  Signed: Burwell Massey.  Witness: Ephraim McClain, Stephen Crowder.  Recorded 14 March 1806.  [Greenville Co., SC Deed Book G, p. 351]

1803 - Nov. 3 - Bishop Asbury, one of the founders of Methodism in the colonies, made annual visits to South Carolina between 1787 and 1814.  He made a number of entries in his diary about events and conditions in South Carolina and on Nov. 2, 1803 he commented:

"Preached to a lifeless congregation (at Wood's), and came off, without dining, to John Foster's twelve miles... 
In this route I crossed the three branches of Tyger River and passed through Greenville and Spartanburg counties... find that the camp meetings have been conducted in good order and with great success.
Nov. 3, 1803:  At Foster's Meeting House ... In evening had a lively prayer-meeting.
Nov. 3, 1803:  Recrossed branches of Tyger and Enoree, came along a crippling path to Thomas Terry's."
[History of Spartanburg. pp. 46-48. ]

1810- US Census, Greenville Co., South Carolina.  page 496.  George listed here is Thomas brother.  Both Thomas and
Ann would over 45 years old,  one daughter 16-26, one son 10-16, four sons under 10 and two daughters under 10.

Thomas Terry              4   1   0   0   1                     2   0   1   0   1 
George Terry               0   3   0   0   1                     6   0   0   1    0 

1814- Abstract, Book I, page 485, Greenville County Deeds

1815 (possibly) - R. Y. H. Terry states that Thomas Terry "met with an accident, a horse kicked and fractured his scull and although he lived some years his mind was injured.  The care of the family devolved upon my Father who was eldest Hence he did not marry till 28 years of age.  Both my grandfathers died before they were or about 60 years old." Mary Vance Norfleet and I have deduced that this may be the reason for the following documents where Nancy and Thomas Terry get a legal separation.  We suspect that it may have made his nature turn more violent.  [R. Y. H Terry letter, records of Mary Vance Norfleet]

1816- A seperation of property is filed in Greenville Co., S. C. which calls into question many assumptions I've made of the years especially about the name of the wives of Thomas Terry and my grandmother, which should according to this be Nancy (probably McDowell) Terry.

1820, before Nov 22 - Thomas Terry dies and is buried in the Pisgah Methodist Church cemetary, Fountain Inn, Laurens County, South Carolina. Ann Terry, his apparent wife at this time, continues to live on his farm for many years afterward on her own. In the document below Charles Terry, is given the property by the heirs (his brothers and sisters) of Thomas Terry's estate on the condition that he take care of the his mother.

Thomas Terry Tombstone
The original tombstone for Thomas Terry. 
Another more modern one is now sitting nearby.
photo courtesy of Mary Norfleet.

Other probate records list his heirs as Nancy Mathews(apparent wife of Thomas Matthews), Elizabeth Hopkins (apparent wife of Solomon Hopkins, an administrator), wife of James Alexander, John M. D. Terry, Jabez Terry, wife of William Meares, Asbury Terry, Gaston Terry, Charles Terry, and Hannah Terry.

"We the undersigned Arbitrators independently chose as will appear from the written bond having had all the matters refered to us in mature consideration to find and award, that in as much as the case Thomas Terry in his life time did convey and set over to James Alexander property for his wife and their children as he thought and we believe a just proportion of his Estate, we award that, Solomon Hopkins the administrator, pay all the expences & the Administration and then that the balance in his hands be equally divided between Nancy Mathews, and Elizabeth Hopkins, children of Thomas Terry Dec.d by a former wife (italics mine - EC) Given under our hands and deals this 20th day of Oct, 1830. Bruce Reynolds reports that Adam Turner Stennis is the son of John Stennis and was the grandson of Alexander Peden. [Bruce Reynolds email 1/16/08]
(separate document)
I Anna Terry do hereby bind my self in manner and form the same as the Legal Heirs of Thomas Terry my Late husband in the above bond, and do hereunto set my hand & afix my seal the 20th Oct. 1830. [photo copy of documents provided by Mary Vance Norfleet, State of SC, Dept 7, File 482. Estate of Thomas Terry]

1820 - U. S. Census,  Greenville Dist.  S. C. roll 120 , page 152 -  all of these folks are on the same page.  There is no indication of Thomas Terry on this census so we feel he must have died by this time.  
Nancy Terry   
           males       0 (U-10),  2 (10-16),  0 (16-26) ,  3 (26-45) ,  0  (45+)
           females    0 (U-10),  1 (10-16),  1 (16-26) ,  0 (26-45) ,  1  (45+)
Solomon Hopkins
            males       2 (U-10),  1 (10-16),  0 (16-26) ,  1 (26-45) ,  1  (45+)
            females    0 (U-10),  2 (10-16),  2 (16-26) ,  0 (26-45) ,  1  (45+)
Charles Terry
            males       2 (U-10),  0 (10-16),  0 (16-26) ,  0 (26-45) ,  1  (45+)
            females    0 (U-10),  2 (10-16),  0 (16-26) ,  1 (26-45) ,  0  (45+)  
1830 - US Census, South Carolina, Greenville, p. 336 This census shows Ann Terry who is 60 to 70, two sons 20- 30 ( Gaston should be 26, Charles is 23.  The one daughter should be Hannah at age 21.
Ann Terry         male    -  0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
                          female -  0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0

1833- Greenville Dist. S. C., Deed Bk. "R" p.195 Dec. 24, 1833, The land listed here is probably the same as listed in the divorce document of 1816. The mother's name is Nancy in the divorce decree and Ann in the land transaction, so I think her name was Nancy Ann McDowell.

 About 1833 George Terry is thought to have moved to Franklin County, Indiana with five of his children. Here he died at the age of 74 and is buried on the farm he used to own in 1838. R. Y. H. Terry says that George Terry leaves South Carolina because he couldn't deal with slavery.[letter of R. Y. H. Terry, photocopy from Mary Vance Norfleet]

Before 1838- Th following letter was written to George and Mary Terry, Thomas' brother, by Harrison and Elizabeth Thompson, their daughter who remained in South Carolina. Here she is referring to Ann Terry, widow of Thomas and Alexander Peden, whose family eventually marries into the Terry family.

Ann Terry is yet a living and is injoying modderet helth and hoeing these few lines will find you inJoying the same blessing She Sais that it has binn a long time Sience She say anny of you altho She wishes to be remembered by you all She yet remembers her love to you all She is yet living at the Same place by her Self only the negros She is caring on a pirtty Samart farm making out verry well She sais that she is gitting old verry fast She Sais She has nothing more at presant but remains your untill death Ann Terry ------------ also Harrison Thompson and Elizabeth Thompson wishes to be Remembered by you all as this is all the way wee have of converssing with wone another wee are all well at this time and hopeing these few lines will find you all in the same State of helth. wee are living where Gaston livied when you left his country we have baught it and is doing well wee think better that wee was doing before. weee have no importent new only Elizabeth has a fine Son the 25th of Febuarry last and we call him James Morgan also you wanted to hear from your old neighbors as to Mrs Woodside She livs at the Saime place wher She did when you was livng in this countery and is doing verry well also William Syms and family is well and is doing well also old uncle John Terry and family is as much as usual also olad Alexander Peden and wife is yet a live the old leady is gone blind and has a Sore betwizt her sholders that wil Ende her days on earth wee have no doubt So wee must come to a slose as we ahve nuthing more at pressent but remains your loving Son and daughtor iuntill death harrison Thompson and Elizabeth Thompson
[Bolin collection and transcription]
1840 - US Census, Greenville County p. 276
Ann Terry            male  -  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0
                            female - 0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  0

1842, Nov 10  -  Ann Terry,  Mary Anderson, John McDowell Terry,  Jabez terry, Asbury Terry, William Mears,  Gaston Terry and Charles Davenport of Greenville District to Charles Terry, for $2000, 370 acres of land being the tract whereon the said Ann Terry lived, located on Fork Shoal Road and bounded by Lawon Arnonld, J. McD Terry, Asbury Terry, William and Rebecca Meares, Gaston Terry, Charles and Hannah Davenport.   Witnessed by William Anderson, and John Dickerson. [Greenville Co., SC. DB U. p. 9]

1843- "Charles and Pamella Terry, children of Thomas Terry, gave four acres of land near the old log chapel, and a new church building was erected just a few yards from the site of the original building. Charles Terry was the church's only steward until 1868, at which time Mr T. C. Peden(Charles' daughter), Lucinda b.1835, marries a Peden) was elected to serve. The trustees of this second church were Charles Terry, Gaston Terry(Charles' brother), Wilson McElory(Charles' wife, Permelia's, maiden name was McElroy), John Terry(nephew of Charles, son of John McD. Terry, another brother ), Squire Calhoun, William Meares (husband of Charles sister, Rebecca), and Thomas Ford."
          [The History of the Pisgah Methodist Church, 200th Homecoming, Fountain Inn, S.C. May 1991] (italics mine)

1842-45 - Charles Davenport/Devenport and Hannah move to Tippah, Mississippi.

1848 - This letter was written by Wm and Mahala Terry to their mother, Mrs Mary Terry, George Terry's widow. In it is mentioned the Charles Devenport who are in Mississippi with them.

1850 - US Census, Greenville Co., South Carolin p. 404-5.
Ann Terry is listed with Wm. Meares, her son-in-law, at age 90 from Ireland in Greenville Co., SC[1850 SC census, p 404-5]
William Meares     53 m   farmer 1300         SC
Rebecca (Terry)    47 f                                 SC
Thomas                 21 m                               SC
Mary                     19 f                                 SC
Elizabeth               18 f                                 SC
Samuel                  15 m                               SC
Harriet                   13 f                                 SC
Wyatt                     11 m                               SC
George                   10 m                               SC
Emma                      5  f                                SC
Sarah                        3 f                                 SC
Ann Terry             90 f                                Ireland
Rebecca Mears       65 f                                 SC

1852- Nancy Ann Terry dies probably at the home of her daughter Rebecca and William Meares with whom she had been living since at least the 1850 census.
Headstone marker in Laurens Co SC, lists Ann Terry b. Mar 14, 1764 d. Jan 3,1852

The following obituary was written in the Southern Christian Advocate in 1852.

1860 about (probably after) - This letter was possibly written to Mary Terry in Indiana but it is not addressed specifically and is undated. The references to the church organization of the Sons of the Abolitionists should put it around the Civil War. Its also interesting to see that this small church also has a group of the Sons of Temperance. In the Genealogies of Families Descended from S. C. Revolutionary Soldiers.  John Anderson who marries Mary Terry is listed as the son of James Anderson, who filed a Revolutionary claim in Camden Dist. later Chester.  James Anderson died 28 Oct 1807 and married Nancy Ewing and had nine children.   John Anderson (b.1784  d. 1837) and Mary Terry, identified as the daughter of Thomas Terry, have ten childen that I'm listing here.
Anna Gibson Anderson m. Hewlett Chapman
William Anderson (of Alabama)
James Anderson (of Fairview, Greenville, SC) m. Rachel Stenhouse
Thomas Anderson m. Carrie Gray of Woodruff, SC
John Anderson m. Sara Blakely
Ewing Anderson d. 1842
George Anderson m. Nancy N. Nesbitt
Robert Anderson   (unmarried)
David Quentin m. Parnecia Griffith.
               [Ervin. Genealogies of Families Descended from S. C. Revolutionary Soldiers. p. 124]


Bolin collection and transcription of letters to George Terry and kin, in the records of Ellen Bollin , 1139 Eastridge Dr., New Albany, IN 47150, forwarded by Hugh Corrigan, 3809 Shenandoah St., Dallas, TX 75205
Corrigan, Hugh. Diary of Charles M. Terry 1856 - 1860 and Journal of James S. Terry 2000. 3809 Shenandoah St., Dallas, TX 75205
Davis, Ruth Miller - records that may be from an unknown bible, interviews with relatives and other research. forwarded by Susan Knight
Devenport/Davenport records 3/9/00 from Jim Devenport email - Greenville County, S. C., Deed Bk. "D" 1794-1798
Ervin, Sara Sullivan. South Carolinians in the Revolution orig. pub. 1949, reprinted Genealagical Pub. Co., Inc., Baltimore 1976
Greenville So. Carolina Cemetery Survey in 5 volumes,
Vol. I, Pisgah Methodist Church, Fountain Inn, S. Carolina
Holcomb, Brent. Marriages and Death Notices from the Southern Christian Advocate 1837-1860, Vol. 1 & 2, Southern Historical Press, Abbeville, S. C.
History of Pisgah United Methodist Church, 200th Anniversary,
1993 Fountain Inn, SC
Norfleet, Mary Vance, thanks for her vast collection of records and history as recorded by her grandmother, Anne Elcybeth "Elsie" Terry Vance. 63090 Opossum Lane, Montrose CO 81401-9603. 5/5/08 - email-
Spartanburg Unit of the Writer's Program, WPA of S. C., History of Spartanburg. Am. Asso. of Univ. Women, Bend and White 1940 ,

Terry Family Index || Elroy's Family Index || Ancestor Chart #12


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