WALKER-L Archives

Archiver > WALKER > 2007-01 > 1168272718


From: "Sarah L. Hardy" <>
Subject: [WALKER] Col. George Walker died Brunswick, VA
Date: Mon, 8 Jan 2007 11:11:58 -0500
In-Reply-To: <001d01c73292$2acbc5c0$6401a8c0@your1a4d29f243>


I enjoy seeing how the early families were interwoven. Ancestors of George
WALKER who married Mary MEADE - the KEITHs and MEADEs - may have known each
other several generations before George and Mary were married. I thought you
might enjoy this bird'-eye view of how their lives may have interwoven.
"Albion's Seed" by Fischer, "The Friendly Virginians" by Worrall, and
"Historical Southern Families Vol XX" by Boddie are interesting reading.

(1)The earliest George WALKER that I am aware of was George and Elizabeth
WALKER who lived in Elizabeth City County. As early as 1660 George Walker
was engaged as a pilot on the Lower James River, and he continued piloting
for about fifty years, followed by his son of the same name. As river
pilots, their duties required experience and skill; they took over the
wheels of ocean-going vessels and guided them safely upstream to the
mainland settlements.

(2)The next George WALKER married Ann KEITH who was the daughter of the Rev.
George KEITH. Rev. KEITH came to Boston, MA about 1684, and preached
Quakerism to the Colonies, from New England to South Carolina. It is said
that he arrived in Virginia from Bermuda and was sent by the church to
fulfill a shortage of ministers in the early settlements along the James
River. He had been head master at the beginning of the William Penn Charter
School. After years as a noted Quaker, the religious principals he espoused
apparently strayed from the established line, and George KEITH was finally
disavowed by the church leaders. Afterward Keith turned from Friends and
joined the Church of England, Anne turned too.

It is not known where George and Ann met or married. A confirmed member of
the Society of Friends (Quakers), George maintained the principles and
practices of Quakerism until his death. Ann renounced the "dissenter's
faith", and following her father's footsteps, became an ardent member of the
Anglican church. The Walker's home at Kecoughtan was a convenient meeting
place for itinerant Quaker missionaries, who must have harassed Ann Walker
in attempting to bring her back to the Quaker faith. She was desirous that
she should control the religious training of her children, as well as have
freedom of worship herself, and the council members gave her this right;
but they compromised by allowing George Walker to "bring up his children in
whatever Christian religion he may be of". The outcome was a stalemate and
Ann suffered a moral defeat, as it was at that time the belief of many that
a Quaker was not a Christian and because the children were then too young to
make decisions themselves. After an appeal to the council at Williamsburg,
these differences were settled; nevertheless, both George and his wife Ann
held staunchly to their conflicting beliefs. Original colonial papers of
1708 give details of this story.

In 1718 Governor Spotswood took a political risk when he appointed Quaker
George Walker, George Keith's son-in-law, to be Naval Officer (Customs
Collector) for the Lower District of James River. The House of Burgesses
officially deplored this appointment of a Quaker.

(3) Jacob WALKER married Courtenay TUCKER and were the parents of Col.
George WALKER.

(4) Col. George WALKER married Mary MEADE who was the granddaughter of Col.
Andrew MEADE and Mary LATHAM. Tradition says Andrew MEADE left his native
land and for a time lived in London, then came to this country, landing in
New York and there marrying Mary Latham, a member of the Society of Friends,
living in Flushing, Long Island. About 5 years later they moved to
Nansemond county, Virginia, at the head of navigation on the Nansemond
river. He was a member of the Virginia house of burgesses, judge of the
court, senior colonel of militia, a man of education and influence. He is
said to have been a man of great physical strength, of fine form, but rather
hard featured.

Andrew Meade may have been a Quaker; certainly he married a Quaker. An
Andrew Meade was one of William Penn's lieutenants in Philadelphia. While
many military men became Quakers, it is not known if this was the same
Andrew Meade who was to become the g-grandfather of Rt. Rev. William Meade,
Episcopal Bishop of VA. Andrew and Mary left NY for VA around the time of
the trial of Quaker leader George Keith for sedition in 1692 (at the
instigation of other Quakers who didn't like his theology).




This thread: