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Submitted by Pat Wilkey Gilstrap


Chapter on Jesse Maxey (1700-1808)"

"The earliest record of Jesse Maxey, a son of Walter and Mary (      ) Maxey,
was a rather curious statement found in a Cumberland Co., Va. court record of
24 July, 1769: (note l) 'The attachment obtained by  (6) Nathaniel Maxey
against the estate of Jesse Maxey who is said to be so absconded that common
process cannot be served upon him for 3 pounds 10 shillings said to be due
from the said Jesse to the said Nathaniel by his attorney  ... "  It was about
that time that Jesse was supposed to have been in New River, Botecourt Co.,
Va. -- now located in Pulaski County near the Montgomery County border.

Jesse served in the American Revolution as a private in the Lincoln Militia
under Captain Samuel Kirkham guarding the salt works from 22 September through
21 October 1782.(note 2).  For his service -- there may have been more than
the month indicated -- he received 640 acres in 1783 located on the east fork
of Station Camp Creek in what was to become Davidson Co., Tenn. (note 3)

Jesse was reportedly an old Indian fighter and  most certainly was the first
Maxey to move out of the state of Virginia.  It is hard to determine exactly
when he settled permanently in Tennessee, and it is possible that for some
years he was shuttling between the two states.  His name is on a list of
taxpayers in Washington Co., Tenn., in 1778; and his son Edward's obituary
reported that Edward was born in that county in 1773.  However in the 1850
census his youngest son John gave his birth state as Virginia. Jesse's name
was also found as an inhabitant of Nashboro, Tenn., in 1780, and he was one of
the signers of the Cumberland Compact on 1 May 1780.  This group was made up
of a party of settlers who had arrived in Tennessee on 24 April of that year
at the site of what later became Nashville.(note 4).  He is mentioned in the
tax books of Sumner Co., Tenn., from 1787 through 1790 with 100 acres.  Then
his name appeared on tax lists of Logan Co., Ky., in 1792, 1794, 1795 and

According to an early history and stories about him by his descendants
(perhaps taken from the same source) it appears that Jesse had a lifelong
hatred of the Indians, and it may have contributed to the misery of his last
years. He left the fort one morning in 1788 to search for his horse that had
strayed.  He was attacked by Indians, shot in the back, stabbed in the throat
and left for dead.  Later he was found by his friends and brought back to the
stockade.  He lived another 20 years but received his nourishment through an
opening in his throat, as the scar tissue which formed over his esophagus
prevented him from swallowing properly.  He was said to have been a tall,
light complexioned man weighing at least 200 pounds, but later became very
bent and thin as the result of his disability.  He died about 1808 and was
buried at Douglas Cemetery, three miles north of Gallatin, Tenn.

The name of his first wife and mother of all  his children is not known. On 5
September 1783 he married Mrs. Elizabeth Loving, the widow of William Loving
who had left a will in Bedford Co., Va., dated 23 April 1767 and proved on 22
September. That will does not give his wife's name, but Elizabeth Loving was
summoned into court -- although she did not appear. (note 5)  The will also
mentioned children, but they may have been William's by a previous marriage.
Among the papers of the descendants of Jesse is a power of attorney given by
Jesse and Elizabeth to William Maxey "Levoins" for the purpose of obtaining
the back wages and interest of a Negro woman supposedly left to Elizabeth by
William.  This document was dated 1 January 1790 from Sumner Co., N.C. (later
in the state of Tennessee), but it was never filed at the Bedford Co., Va.
courthouse. (note 6)

It has been said that Jesse had a daughter named Elizabeth, but the only
record found to support this is a Jefferson Co., Ill. history.  The
genealogical history of the descendants of Jesse's son, William Maxey, of
Jefferson Co., Ill. mentions a Maxey Wilkey, a veteran of the War of 1812, who
arrived in Moore's Prairie, Ill., with his widowed mother,( Hester), about the
same time as the Maxeys.  It stated that the Maxeys and Wilkeys were related
by marriage, so it is possible that Maxey Wilkey's mother was a daughter of
Jesse. *