Research Notes - Matthias/Mathias Chapman

Submitted by Madeline E. Black CFA member # 391


My eldest and yet I think alien ancestor is Matthias/Mathias Chapman. He was born approximately 1785 in what was then the Virginia territory or so I have gleaned from census material. I have my doubts about this but have listed it as the area with several question marks along side of it.

The first actual proof I have of him is in what is now Wood County WV. Wood County VA was established in December of 1798 from parts of Harrison County. He spent his entire life there, though I have yet to find a death date or a place of burial. I believe he is buried in the Matthews/Barrett Cemetery as there are a number of connections to this.

I have at this point sent for the military file of a Mathias Chapman who fought in the War of 1812 in the 1st Regiment (Connell's) Virginia Militia. Hopefully it will provide me with more information on him.
Matthias married Mary Saunders in about 1823 in Virginia. She was the daughter of Elizabeth Saunders and unkown Saunders. Elizabeth lived with Mary and Matthias for better then thirty years and she died in 1856. Her death notice lists Mary Chapman as daughter. Elizabeth was the daughter of Jonathan and Judith (Clarke) Saunders. Elizabeth may have married a Saunders cousin as was common or she may have had Mary out of wed lock which could possibly help explain why she resided with Matthias and Mary all those years. I have located no further information on Elizabeth and I am still searching in the Clarke line to document information on Judith. Jonathan appears to be her second husband.

This is the time line I have developed for Matthias:

Born 1781/85 - according to the 1850 census giving his age as 65, though other census have his age slightly different.
1790 - not listed in census index - was probably child in father's household, presumably in Harrison County.
1800 - not listed in census index - was probably child in father's household
1802 - listed as tax assessor and collector from 1802 to 1820's for Wood County.
1803 - first year of record of personal taxes
1804 Sept/22 - bought property with Rezin Barnes, 200 acres on Reedy Creek in Wood Co. Sim's Index pg 752 and Wood Co. Land records Vol 1 pg 38.
1806 Signature card, listed as soldier in 113th Regt. Va. Mil entered as a private, discharged as a private. Signature dates 1806-1807
1810 - not listed in census index
1812 - War of 1812 1st Regt. (Connell's) Va. Mil. entered as a serg. discharged as a private.
1814 - listed NY 1st Lieutenant 3rd Riflemen Honorable dischorge 17/Mar/1814-15/Jun/1815. This reference is made due to the fact that he was stationed in Clarksburg Va., under the command of Capt. Daniel Kincheloe. Reference found in Pioneers of Wood County by House pg 431.
1814 - listed as property owner with tax records through 1840's
1815 - listed for property and personal taxes
1816 - Listed property tax lists and personal taxes. Listed Deed Book for 1816, possible 9 properties equal to 8502 acres.
1817 - listed property and personal taxes
1818 - property and personal tax records not located
1819 - listed for property and personal taxes
possible marriage to Mary Saunders, date is assumed as first child is born 1820.
1820 - listed for property and personal taxes (shows possible slave ownership of one slave)
First child born August 8th, Andrew Jackson Chapman as per family Bible
Census lists 1M 16-26 (Matthias)
1F under 10 (should be M - Andrew)
1F 16-26 (Mary)
1821 - Twins born November 18 , Mariah Elizabeth and Matthias Jr. (died same day)
Recorded in family Bible.
1822 - Land deal, 340 acres on Worthington's Creek, Wood Co., WV - Sim's Index
Twin Mariah Elizabeth died July 18th
1823 - May 21st son William Marion born
Land deal on Worthington's Creek dated Feb.19th as per copy.
1826 - Land deal Nov. 1st w. James H. Huston, same land sold to Thomas D. Hopkins on Dec. 19th. Meigs Co. Ohio Land Rec. Vol 2, pg 361.
Note: Huston/Hutson surname becomes prominent in my family as a grandaughter of James married into the Dotson family again connecting with the Chapman's
1827 - Sept. 23rd son John Truman born
1829 - Land deal 50 acres to Jeptha Locker on Jul 7th. These acres are most likely what was used for a cemetery mentioned in the John A. House Files.
1830 - listed 1830 census - 0-4M (John Truman) 5-9M (2-Andrew Jackson & William Marion) 30-39M (Matthias)
30-39F (Mary) 50-59F (MIL Elizabeth Saunders)
1831 - Listed as Wood Co. Surveyor through the year 1845. WV Heitage Encyclopedia Supp. Vol 8 pg 39
1832 -1839 I have nothing listed other then his continuing as surveyor
1840 - Census listed in Wood Co. VA/WV with wife, 3 sons and MIL
Listed as leader in Democratic party, prominent in "log cabin" campaign of that year - Pioneers of Wood Co. by House pg 611
1842 - Land deal Walker's Creek 384 acres listed as Chapman, M. Sim's Index pg 752
Land deal Lee Creek 300 acres listed as Chapman, M.C. Sim's Index 752
Note: These could be a different Chapman with the initial M. but I doubt it.
1845 - End of surveyor's term that started in 1831
Land deal 36 acres adj. Daniel Kincheloe Jul 31
1850 - Census listing pg 150 Wood Co. VA/WV listed with wife, 2 sons, MIL and possible niece and nephew.
The niece being Louisa Athey age 27 and nephew being Alexander Bunch age 26. I have not connected these surnames to Chapman's but it has been suggested to me by another searcher who is familiar with both names.
1856 - Death of MIL on March 16. Wood Co. Death Rec. as reported by daughter Mary Chapman. Elizabeth being born in Caroline Co. VA, died age 95 d/o Jonathan and Judith (Clarke) Saunders.
1860 - Census Wood Co. VA/WV listed self age 79 wife age 76 and son William no age given. Mathias listed as surveyor and son listed as carpenter.

This is the extent of my information on Mathias/Matthias and his direct information. I can however follow John Truman through his son John Thomas to my father Melvin then to myself. I have no addtional information on Andrew Jackson or William Marion, sons of Matthias.

There is one additional piece of information that I have. I don't know how this could be my Matthias but it makes me wonder. Revolutionary War Muster Rolls 1775-1783 list a Chapman, Maheus, rank at induction private. Except for the roll box number being 15 I have not found anything else that refers to this. This could possibly be my Matthias's father, spelling being what it was at that time.

These are my questions to my fellow Chapman researchers:

1. Does anyone know of additional information , books, articles etc. that pretain to tax assessors and/or collectors of that time period. What I did get was from a search by an employee of the Parkersburg Library.

2. Any source for marriage records for this area for the time span of 1818-1820. I have searched but have not found one with Matthias and Mary listed. Again neither was found during the search at the Parkersburg Library.

3. Any source for the death records in 1821 (Mathias Jr.) and 1822 (Mariah). And death records after the 1860 census and before the 1870 census (Matthias and Mary).

4. Any connection between the family of Kincheloe, Athey, Locker and Bunch with Chapman's of the time period and area.

5. Can anyone give me the particulars to the "log cabin" campaign of 1840 for the Democratic political party?

6. Does anyone have a connection to the sons Andrew Jackson Chapman b. August 8th, 1820 and/or William Marion/Marian Chapman born May 21st, 1823?

23/SEP/1827 - 23/APR/1892

I have not a time line on John Truman Chapman as of yet. But will do so in the near future, it is a great way to put the person into prospective with other information of other family members.

John Truman was born 23/Sep/1827 (Family Bible) in Wood Co. VA/WV and died 21/Apr/1892 Tygary District, Wood Co. WV.
He married Mary Ann Barrett, (twin to Sarah) d/o Caleb Barrett and Jemima Goucher. Maried 27/Feb/1852.
Mary Ann was born 01/Dec/1827 in Stillwell Creek, Wood Co. VA/WV and died 25/Apr/1895 in Tavennersville, Wood Co. WV.
They are both buried in the Matthews/Barrett Cemetery in Wood Co. WV. This cemetery is said to be on the grounds of the homestead of Caleb and Jemima Barrett. John House files #1. Sarah, twin sister to Mary Ann, married a Matthews and they are also buried here along with Caleb and Jemima and several other family members.

Children of Mary Ann (Barrett) and John Truman Chapman

1. f. Sabina/Saburnio Chapman b.3/October 1852 Wood Co. VA/WV died before 1933 as she is not mentioned in a brothers' obit as others are.

2. f. Martha Washington Chapman b. 31/May/1854 died after 1933 as she is mentioned in her brother's obit as still living. Married possible Welsh.

3. m. William Andrew Chapman b.6/May/1856 Wood Co. VA/WV died before 1933.
Note: a possibility on a death date is 2/Oct/1888, no marriage information

4. m. Caleb Matthias Chapman b.07/Jul/1858 Tygart District, Wood Co. VA/WV
died 03/Dec/1945 in Wood Co. WV. Wife's first name Winona, surname unk., one child Clifford.

5.m. John Thomas Chapman b.14/Jul/1860 Wood Co. VA/WV died 09/Dec/1933 Hagersville, Bucks Co. PA. Married Helen Virginia Dotson ca. 1893. She was the daughter of Jasper A. and Eliza Caroline (Hutson) Dotson. She is born
Apr/1872 in Doddridge Co. WV and died 08/Oct/1929 in Philadelphia, PA. Both are buried in Philadelphia, PA.

6.f. Mary Chapman Wood Co. VA/WV died before 1933 as she is not listed in brother's obit.

John Truman served in the Civil War though I do not have his records yet. I do have census material from 1860 to 1880. (No 1890 census available) I have additional records of the birth of his children plus the information written in the Family Bible.

Questions for my fellow Chapman researchers:

1. Does anyone else connect with these names? I can do a small additional amount on Caleb as he was known as Uncle Kep and a slight rememberence of Sabina/Saburnio as she was called Aunt Bernie.


I will only do a small line for for my grandfather though I do have additonal information on most of his children.

John Thomas Chapman b. 14/Jul/1860 in Wood Co. VA/WV died 09/Dec/1933 in Hagersville, Bucks Co. PA. Married Helen Virginia Dotson ca. 1893 either in WV or Philadelphia PA though no record has yet to be found.

Helen Virginia Dotson b.Apr/1872 in Doddridge Co. WV the daughter of Jasper A. and Eliza Caroline (Hutson) Dotson. She died 08/Oct/1929 in Phiadelphia Pa. Both John Thomas and Helen Virginia are buried in Philadelphia PA.

Children of John and Helen are:

1.f. Mary Laura Chapman b.06/Jun/1894 Phila. PA; m.1930 Umtali, So. Rhodesia Africa, John Edgar Hatch; died 27/Jan/1976 Seaside Oregon; 1child

2.m. Walter Chapman (no middle name known) b.13/Feb/1896; died 21/Feb/1896; buried Phila. PA.

3.f. Minerva Lanola Chapman b.11/Jan/1897 Phila. PA.; m. 29/Jan/1915 Robert John Reed, Phila. PA; died 17/Jul/1970 Millville Cumberland Co. NJ; 9 children

4.f. Bertha Ella Chapman b.22/Jul/1899 Phila. PA; Charles Fernandez, Phila. PA.; died Dec/1986 Blackwood, Camden Co. NJ; 1 child

5.f. Florence Chloe Chapman b.09/Oct/1901 Phila. PA; m. 25/Jul/1931 Joseph A. McMenamin Phila. PA.; died 26/Jan/1985 Phila. Pa.; 1 child who died at under a year of age.

6.m. John Thomas Chapman Jr. b.07/Jul/1905 Phila. PA.; m. 1 Florence Simon, 2. Ann LeFever, 3. Mrs. Quigley Phila. PA.; died 29/Feb/1972 Phila. PA.; 1 child known with wife Ann, though Ann had 2 boys from a previous marriage.

7.m. Joseph William Chapman b.01/Jan/1908 Phila. PA.; m. Agnes Lokay; died 25/Aug/1932 Sellersville, Bucks Co. PA.; 1 child.

8.m. Melvin Elmo Chapman b.19/Oct/1913 Phila. PA.; m. Lillian Bertha Gemmell, Doylestown, Bucks Co. PA. 12/Mar/1932; died 27/Feb/1984 Quakertown, Bucks Co. PA.; 6 children

9.f. Naomi Alma Chapman b.11/Oct/1914 Phila. PA.; m. Harold Rogers Bickley Perkasie, Bucks Co, PA. 02/Nov/1935; Naomia is still living quite happily and healthy in Quakertown, Bucks Co. PA. 9 known children though 2 (twin boys) died before birth.

Submitted by Madeline E. Black CFA member # 391

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