About Samuel Bolling
Additional Curator's Notes:
One of Samuel Bolling's descendants claimed Samuel was the son of William Bolling and Amelia Randolph, which would have made him a direct descendant (5th generation) of John Rolfe and Pocahontas/Matoaka. The modern-day descendants of John Rolfe & Matoaka dispute this and have reasonable evidence to prove that this claim is false. His true ancestry has been confirmed by genetic tests that prove his relation to his brother, John, and therefore to his proper parentage.
Samuel's father William is sometimes confused with William Bolling (1731-1776/8). As curator, I have elected to give Samuel's father the display name of William Bolling of Orange, VA, to hopefully prevent confusion with William Bolling born in 1731. It is important not to confuse the the two Williams because William born in 1731 did not exist.
The William Bolling who was born in 1731 supposedly married Amelia Randolph, daughter of Richard Randolph II and wife Nancy Meade. From everything I have read, these two never existed. The alleged connection between William Bolling (1731-1776/8) was caused by a fabrication conceived by a researcher who was looking for a way to the lineage of another William Bolling who was living at the same relative time.There were more than one William Bollings then, but the most likely one who fit the bill was William Bolling (1707-1772).
This is where the fraud started. Richard Randolph and Nancy Meade Randolph did not have a daughter named Amelia. The Randolphs are as extensively documented as the Bollings. The only place I can find a mention of Amelia is in discussions about the fraudulent pedigree.
As for her husband William, the person who created the false pedigree took the name of the real William (William Bolling of Orange, VA), gave him a fake Randolph wife, made up dates for the fake William, changed Samuel's date of birth, and created a fake bible entry showing the fake relationship to the Bolling and Randolph families. He (or she) then made up a fake letter from Samuel, explaining his pedigree. This letter, supposedly found in a family bible, can be found near the bottom of this page - http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=ubolling&id=I698.
This information was passed around to various genealogical societies and was included in a not too well researched book by a Mississippi judge named Zelma Wells Price. She published the erroneous list of John Fairfax Bolling's children in her book, "From Whom I Came, From Whence I Came". At that point, everyone accepted it as fact, including the DAR.
It was not questioned until the 1980's or 90's, when a descendant of John Bolling (brother of Samuel) began looking at the dates and land transfers. That's when the story began to fall apart. The Bolling Family Association had already started a DNA project for settling other false claims of descent from Pocahontas.
Descendants of brothers Samuel and John Bolling of Orange County, Virginia, were tested and found not to belong to the same DNA group as descendants of John Fairfax Bolling. The father of Samuel Bolling is William Bolling of Orange Co., VA. William Bolling died in 1772 with his estate being administered in Orange Co., VA by John Bolling, the eldest son, and brother to Samuel.
Read more about the fraud starting here:
The truth, in short, is that Samuel Bolling was a real person, born in Virginia, and later relocating to South Carolina. He married Abigail Choice, daughter of Tully Choice. Samuel and Abigail had nine children. Much about Samuel, his wife and his children can be proven by documents such as wills and deeds. To read more about the true parentage of Samuel Bolling, please see:
The information below is what has been proven by DNA testing and by research of colonial documents.It is as accurate as I can make it at this time. Please do not try to link this family to the descendants of John Fairfax Bolling. Maria Edmonds-Zediker, Volunteer Curator, February 16, 2014.
Samuel Bolling was the son of William Bolling of Orange, VA and wife Anne Sims. He was born about 1744 in Orange County, Virginia. He married Abigail Choice. Samuel died between May 1808 (date of will) and November 1832 (settlement of estate) in Laurens County, South Carolina.
Samuel served in the Pittsylvania Militia under Lt. John Donelson in 1775. After he served his enlistment, he later re-enlisted and served in the Henry County Militia under Captain William Ryan. For his service, the Daughter of the American Revolution consider him to be an American Patriot, DAR# A011834.
By 1768, Samuel is living in Pittsylvania County, where he appears in several court documents. In 1770, in Pittsylvania County, Samuel witnessed the deed transferring property from John Simmons of Prince Edward County to Jeremiah Ward of Pittsylvania Colony.
On March 28, 1771. in the Pittsylvania Co., VA Deed Book, pp114-115, an Indenture was made by Tully Choice of Pittsylvania Co. to Sam'l Bolling of the same County for "natural love and affection," a tract of land in the County of Pittsylvania, on Snow Creek containing by estimation 207 acres, adj. William Hall's corner, Hill's line [further described in metes and bounds]. Signed by Tully Choice. No witnesses. Proved in Court on 23 March 1771 by Tully Choice and recorded. Tully Choice was Samuel's father-in-law. This is the deed that, once discovered, started the unraveling of the William and Amelia Bolling fraudulent lineage.
In May, 1772, in Amelia Co., Virginia, Samuel witnessed the will of James Waldrope (Waldrop) and gave the security for the widow Sarah Waldrop to administer the estate.
September 1775 - Pittsylvania Co., VA. Samuel Bolling nominated as Ensign in Pittsylvania Co. Militia; Tully Choice, Jr. nominated as Lieutenant.
In January 1776 Samuel Bolling sold the 207 acres on Snow Creek in Pittsylvania County, the land which he had received as a gift from Tully Choice. That land eventually becomes a part of Henry County, Virginia.
Samuel first appears in South Carolina about 1786 when he is granted 410 acres in Greenville County, on Reedy River, land that was quite close to the Laurens county line. He is involved in a slander trial in Laurens County in June 1786. He was also made a highway overseer in that year. In 1787 he was name a juror for the court of inquests.
In March 1786, Charles and Elizabeth Simmons planter of Laurens Dist. sold to Samuel Boling of 96 Dist., planter, for 60 pds 168 acres lying on Reedy River, a branch of Saluda River. He spent the rest of his life at this Reedy River property and appears in the Laurens County census for 1790.
Samuel Bolling left a will, dated 1808. His wife "Abi" is the primary beneficiary, with bequests to his children, and how the estate is to split after Abigail's death. A transcript of the will is attached below. The will was not proven until November 1832. Family lore gives his death as August 14, 1808.
Children of Samuel Bolling and wife Abigail Choice:
- Robert Bolling b: ABT 1777 in Virginia
- Nancy Bolling b: ABT 1779 in Henry County, VA.
- John Bolling b: 1780 in Virginia
- Tully Choice Bolling b: 1781 in Henry County, VA.
- Elizabeth Bolling b: ABT 1782
- Samuel Bolling Jr. b: BEF 1786 in South Carolina
- Lucinda Bolling b: ABT 1789 in Laurens District, SC
- Mary Polly Bolling b: 1794
- Thornberry D. Bolling b: 1794 in Laurens County, SC
Will of Samuel Bolling May 9, 1808
In the name of God, Amen. I Samuel Bolling of the State of South Carolina, Laurance District, living on Ready River, planter being in health of body and of sound mind memory and understanding, praised by God for the same. I do make this my last will and testament in manner and form following. I give devise and bequeath unto my beloved wife Abi Bolling the house and plantation where I now live, during her widowhood or natural life. And then at her death the land is to be divided equally between my two youngest sons Samuel Bolling and Thornberry Bolling, also a good horse, bridle, and saddle, and feather bed and furniture, cow and calf each. And also my two youngest daughters Lucinda Bolling and Polly Bolling a good horse, bridle, and saddle, and feather bed and furniture, cow and calf each. And to my son John Bolling feather bed and furniture, cow and calf. And after my lawful debts is paid the remainder of my estate to remain in my wife Abi Bolling hands till death. And then to be divided equally between all my children Viz., Robert Bolling, Nancy Sullivant, and Elizabeth Dunklin, and Tully Bolling, and John Bolling, Lucinda Bolling, and Samuel Bolling, Polly Bolling, and Thornberry Bolling. I hereby appoint and ordain nominate, appoint and constitute my beloved wife Abi Bolling executrix and my son Robert Bolling and Tully Bolling and John Bolling and Samuel Bolling Executors of this my last will and testament. Hereby revoking and making void all wills heretofore made by me and declaring that a majority of the above named persons or the survivors of them shall absolutely and finally determind and decide all disputes or contentions of whatever nature arising in the Excecution of this my will. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 9th day of May, 1808. Signed, sealed, declared, and published by the above named Samuel Bolling as and for his last will and testament. In the presence of us who at his request and in his presence have subscribed our names as witnesses thereto.
- William Choice
- Mary Choice
- Tully Choice
- Samul Bolling (seal)
Laurens County, South Carolina, Wills 1784-1840
10 Nov. 1832. Appraisal of estate of SAMUEL BOULING, dec'd by Bailey Mahon?, Thos. _____, Jno. Terrey and Willie Benham. 18 Dec. 1832. Sale Bill of SAMUEL BOLLING, dec'd. Pur.: J. N. Bolling, Wm. Babb, Jno. Terey, Isaac Devenport, David Cowen, Wm. Tompson, Saml. Bolling, James Anderson, Nathan Nisbet, Tulley Bolling, Alfred Barrett, Jno. Hopkins, Alfred Bennett, Nimrod Nabours, Thos. Mahon, Wm. Hatcher, Edw. Nash, Ezekiel Wadkins, Jno. Nash, Plesant Shaw, Jno. McDavid, Thos. Grayham, Garland Sims (also Garlin and Garlington), Abner Nixon, Lewis Pyles, Robt. Bolling, Henderson Sulivant, Baley Mahon, Wm. Devenport.
Samuel Bolling's Timeline
November 2, 1772
Henry, VA, USA
March 18, 1778
Henry, Virginia, United States
Laurens, South Carolina, United States
Laurens, South Carolina, United States