William (William Lemuel) Sexton [ Sexson, Saxton] (5)

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About William (William Lemuel) Sexton [ Sexson, Saxton] (5)


Another Has listed as children of leah free/Ferree and william sexton as

•Judah = daughter 

•charles •zadock •John •Samuel Lemuel = this could be a twist on Lemuel Edward •Isham = this could be a version of esom

There is a complete listing of their children - which is given below - also there is strong evidence that Willaim was married twice. Thus the listing of all the children as belonging to Leah is incorrect

thus these listed above have been deleted as soon as the merging is fianlized and the connection of the other set of parents given for Willaim can be deleted

but noted here as I am syre they will show up in other family trees since they have been published on the internet and in GENI


John Sexton of Lunenburg county Virginia who died before - 12 May 1763

As has been found:

VA Lunenburg Co Court Order Bk 9 12 May 1763 - Following orphans of John Sexton deceased were ordered to be bound out; William and Elizabeth, Benjamin and Archibald, and John.


The oral tradition on the early Sextons is Two brothers James and William came from Ireland to Virginia around 1725. One of these two brothers had sons Wm., John, and Benjamin, etc., who fought in the Revolution.

Of these early Sexton brothers only Wm (1747-1820) spelled his name Sexson though he used other spellings as well or those writing his name down used other spellings. And Sexson is the name on his tombstone which is in a private cemetery a few miles west of Williamsburg, Ky.

Some of Wm's children spelled their name Sexton and some Sexson. The Sexsons went to IN. from KY during the 1830s. Wm's son Free soon moved to IL from IN and Sexson, IL got its name from a descendent, Morgan Sexson.

There is a book on Sexton family Hx in the FHC in Salt Lake written by a John Sexton (1900-?) mainly on one of the IN families but includes an oral tradition that brothers James and Wm came from Scotland and James was the father of Wm. This of course someone's memory; someone has reported finding a land record which has Wm's father as Wm.
It includes an anecdote on Wm the son that he was orphaned while a child and was apprenticed. This helps explain why we have almost no information on his parents. The anecdote went on to say that he would run away, get caught, but finally ran away successfully and was gone a number of years. This and his injury during the Rev. may account for his late marriage. Colonial records state that he was badly injured in a fail from his horse while on leave and had to pay someone a certain sum to serve out the remainder of his 6 year enlistment. 



william's parentage is still not determined!

His PARENTS ARE NOT JOSEPH SEXTON and MARY LEE ! as many has claimed - some facts:

•William m. 1st [-?-] & 2nd Leah Free/Ferree - was born February 11, 1746/47 in Lunenburg Co., VA 

•Joseph Sexton m. Mary Lee was born January 4, 1730 Long Island City, Queens, New York,

For many years, erroneous parentage has been making the rounds on the web and through the LDS library. Someone, years ago, gave the parents of our William Sexton as Joseph SEXTON (son of Charles SEXTON and Sarah JAMESON) and Mary LEE, from France. When I wrote to the person whose name was given as the source on the information given to the LDS, she wrote back and said she was a professional genealogist, and did not keep records after she turned them over to her client. My thought is, if she were a professional genealogist, she would have furnished proof of this relationship.

The Joseph Sexton named was married to Phoebe CAMPBELL, died in the Shenandoah Valley on Oct. 9. 1804 and Phoebe moved on to Wythe Co., VA with her son Thomas Campbell Sexton. As far as we now know, there is no connection between them and our line. - - - Patricia o'conner


William buried Alsip cemetery on Cumberland Falls road near Corbin, Whitley, Ky. Headstone & Revolutionary War marker of William Sexton, b. 1747 VA, d. 1830 Whitley Co., KY, m. Leah Ferree. Grave located in Whitley Co., KY, at Sexton-Alsip Cemetery, just off 25-W, near Oak Grove School. This little cemetery is located between Corinth & Ward Cemeteries and some also say Ward Cemetery, near Corbin, Whitley Co., KY

1 JUL 2001 Headstone still very legible with Masonic emblem; DAR Rev. war marker behind original


  • 1746 - May 1 from Brunswick County was established Lunenburg County
  • 1747 - 11 feb born in Virginia
  • 1763 - 12 May pre VA Lunenburg Co Court Order Bk 9 Following orphans of John Sexton deceased were ordered to be bound out; William and Elizabeth, Benjamin and Archibald, and John.
  • 1771 Botetourt Co., VA Tax List
  • 1774 - Capt Crockatt’s Co VA Mil. He served in the military Lord Dunmore’s War
  • 1776 in May the said William Sexson, enlisted for the term of six years (should the War so long continue), to the best of his recollection, in the County of Augusta at a place called the Minter ground in the state of Virginia in the company commanded by Capt. Wm. Hasburt in the Regiment commanded by Col. William Campbell in the line of the State of Virginia on the Continental establishment, that he was enlisted by Col. Campbell himself and placed by the Col. Under Capt. Hasburt; that he, the said William Saxson continued to serve in the said Corps for the term of three years when he obtained from the Col. Campbell a furlow to visit his friends in Augusta County, Va., that he obtained said furlow upon the delaware river on which side he does not recollect but was a place cald Schalkill, that his furlow was for three month
  • 1779 - at the Royal oak in Augusta County ap he obt'd from Col. Wm. Campbell, a discharge for three years service performed by him
  • 1781 The Revolutionary War was over
  • 1782 - he likewise obtained from Col. Campbell a discharge for three years service by the said Joseph Street at the same place he rec'd his own discharge, the said Street served out his term of three years, these discharges were lost the 8 of February last 1825/6
  • 1783 Montgomery Co., VA, Book B, p. 27 - Treasury Warrant - James Newell took possession of 300 acres of land on Rock Creek, New River, including the improvements of Will, Benjamin, Charles & John Sexton
  • 1785 - abt m. Leah Free / Ferree
  • 1787 Jul 17 Augusta Co., VA - Scotch-Irish Settlements in VA, Vol 1, Augusta Co Court Records Jul 17, 1787 William Sexton reported as refusing to give in their taxes to commissioner:
  • 1793 - from part of Wythe County Grayson county Virginia was formed
  • 1793 Wythe Co., VA Tax List? (Second Section)
  • 1794 Grayson VA Tax List (2 males over 21, 2 horses)
  • 1796 appeared on land tax and personal property tax.
  • 1798 22 MAR Grayson County, VA -"This indenture made the twenty second day of March in the year of one thousand seven hundred and ninety eight and in the twenty second year of the Commonwealth Between William Saxson and Leah his wife of the County of Grayson and State of Virginia of the one part and Benjamin Saxson of the County and State of aforesaid of the other part" for $300, land on Rock Creek, "dividing line between Pryor Saxson and Benjamin Saxson. [GCV Bk 1,p158-160]
  • 1798 27 MAR Grayson County, VA - sold 67 acres of land to Pryor Sexton (Saxson) for $100
  • 1799 appeared on land tax and personal property tax.
  • 1800 Grayson Co., VA Tax List
  • 1800 - moved from Whythe Co to Whitley Co. Ken.
  • 1811 4 NOV -William Sexton Sr. of Knox Co. KY sells land on Rock Creek in Grayson County Virginia to Pryor Sexton, adjoining John Welsh, part of a tract of 404 acres granted to said William by patent, line between Benjamin and Pryor Sexton and said William, containg residue of the original survey deducting lands conveyed by said William to Benjamin and Pryor Sexton. Wit: William Sexton, Thornton SextonSexton; land adjoining John Welsh, part of a tract of 404 acres granted to William by patent
  • 1818 September Term, Court met agreeable to adjournment on Tuesday the 22d. Just. present.--- Ordered that William Sexton Snr. be exemped from paying County levy and pole Tax in future by reason of infirmity.
  • 1818 Dec Term At a county court holden for the Body of Whitley County - Ordered that a summons do Ishue returnable to the 1st day of the next January Term against ... William Sexon [?] Snr... to shew cause if any they can why they gave in a fraudulent list of their taxable property in the year 1818 and why they shall not be fined according to law for such failure.
  • 1820 Whitley Co., KY, p. 125 Census
  • 1825/6 - feb 8 his house being consumed by fire His war service discharge papers & Free Mason - masonic papers were signed by George Washington; they were destroyed in a fire
  • 1826 - jul. 5 age'd seventy-eight years old last February declaration, in order to obtain the provision made by act of Congress of the 18 March 1818 and 1st May 1820
  • 1830 Whitley Co., KY, p. 273
  • 1829 dec 21 William Sexton dies
  • 1839 8 or 18 aug. Leah (Free/ferree0 sexton dies
  • 1842 on Sep 5, William W. wrote a letter asking if he is entitled to anything because of his father's service. In it he says, "They were married before the old war."
  • 1848 In April , a John Snyder of Greene Co. gave a deposition. He said he was "personally acquainted with William and 'Leah' ---- that his said acquaintance was formed in the (then) county of Montgomery (Montgomery is crossed out and Wythe written in)" beginning in 1794 "--- that they continued to reside in said county about twenty-five years." He names the same living children, but goes on to say "that said William and Leah had other issue who, as this affiant is informed, departed this life long before the death of said Lear, except Free Sexson who departed this life in the county of Shelby and state of Illinois."
  • 1848 April - Joel wrote a deposition naming the living children as James, Enoch, Jacob, Peggy, William, Lemuel and Joel. "He further states that said Leah left the following grandchildren (the word following is crossed out) whose names he cannot state, ---their parents, to wit, the children of said William and Leah - having departed this life." "---- said William and Leah ever since he was acquainted with them lived together as husband and wife and were reported such in the neighborhood where they lived." Unfortunately, it also says "He further states that he has no interest in the application by the heirs of said Lear for pension money due her." Which was not true.
  • 1848 - nov. 25th that William Sexson, late of the county of Whiteley and state of Kentucky,...that he left a widow Leah Sexson and the following children by his said widow,* towit: James Sexson, Enoch Sexson, Jacob Sexson, Peggy Long (wife of Robert Long), William Sexson, Lemuel Sexson and Joel Sexson, and the following grandchildren by their son Free Sexson...
  • 1849 Jan A letter from a George Dunn, many ink blots. He says he is personally acquainted with Joel Sexton and Peggy Long. He said he "also had a slight acquaintance with said Leah in her lifetime. When I knew her she appeared to be a very aged woman."



There is a minor controversy among present day Sexton descendants regarding the children of William, the Revolutionary War veteran who married Leah Free. Some people credit him with only the children mentioned in the estate papers of his widow, Leah.

However, William had most likely been married before he married Leah in 1785.
He was about thirty-eight years old when he married Leah: this would have been very late for a first marriage for those days. Although no early marriage has been found for William, neither has his marriage to Leah. They lived on the frontier, people married then 'in the sight of God' and followed up whenever a minister happened by. If services were performed, all records are, apparently, lost. 


The children mentioned in Leah's estate papers are, as named in the November 25, 1848 paper signed by Gustavus Clark, clerk of the Probate Court of Lawrence Co., IN., "by his said widow, towit:

  • James Sexson,
  • •Enoch Sexson,
  • Jacob Sexson,
  • Peggy Long (wife of Robert Long),
  • William Sexson,
  • Lemuel Sexson and
  • Joel Sexson,

and the following grandchildren by their son Free Sexson,----". In other words, Leah outlived her husband, and when her children learned that they were entitled to money, they filed as Leah's children, not as William's!

Quoting from the copy of a letter written by Benjamin Swift Sexson [a grandson of william and leah's and was to have been read at a family reunion] as heard from his parents: "Two brothers, James and William Sexson immigrated from Ireland to North America before the United States of America was born, which was evidently in the first half of the eighteenth century.

One of these brothers raised up a family of three sons, namely, John, William, and Ben, and they were all three soldiers in the Revolutionary War of 1776 for the independence of the United States of America.

William Sexson married Leah Free and settled in Grayson Co., Va., and at the close of the war they were the parents of three children

They resided in Va. until their family increased to ten sons and two daughters whose names were:

  • Archie,
  • Isaac,
  • Ollie,
  • James,
  • Enoch,
  • Peggy,
  • Jacob,
  • William,
  • Free,
  • Lemuel,
  • Joel and
  • Esom."

There is more, but it is about the next generations. The point of this is that Benjamin says 'William married Leah Free' and 'at the close of the war they were the parents of three children. He also says "their family increased to ten sons and two daughters." And, he names

  • Archie
  • Isaac and
  • Ollie

as the other three children.

[Since Leah was only born ca 1766, and was married to William in 1785, she couldn't have had three children by 1781. Therefore the unidentified first wife of William's is obvious

We can't prove that William was married twice, but since Benjamin claimed Isaac, Archie and Olivia, and the names of Isaac and Olivia are carried on in the family, I am sure they were William's children.

It's true that Joel didn't name them when filing for Leah's pension from William, but he named Leah's children, apparently assuming that, since the pension should have gone to Leah, only her children were entitled to it.]

The Revolutionary War was over in 1781: William and Leah were married in 1785. According to her age as given in the pension papers and on the 1830 census of Whitley Co., KY, Leah was born ca 1766. Therefore, it is believed that the three children born before or during the war were by a previous marriage of Williams.

Copied from typewritten pages of Wm Hartzler. On back was, "information gathered by my sister Anna, who did som reasearch in VA and KY. She says Wm and Leah were married in VA and made their home on New River in Grayson County. They had three children before he went to war. After the war they moved to Whitley Co KY. The note also states that a Mrs Joseph Sexson of IN says all the children were born in Grayson


Military Service: Revolutionary War veteran, federal pension #W8711 - served in the 2nd, 10th & 14th VA Regts.

GENEALOGICAL ABSTRACTS OF REVOLUTIONARY WAR PENSION FILES: SAXON, William, or William Sexton, Leah, VA Line, #W8711, soldier was born in Feb. 1748; he enlisted in Augusta Co., VA. Soldier applied 4 July 1826, Whitley Co., KY, having moved there from Wythe Co., VA about 1800. Soldier died 31 Dec 1829 or 1830 in Whitley Co., KY. In 1826, soldier had a wife Leah aged 60; widow died 18 Aug 1839 in Greene Co., IN, having moved there in 1831 from Whitley Co., KY. Widow died leaving children and in 1848 they were: James & Enoch, both of Whitley Co., KY; Jacob of Des Moines, IA; Peggy, wife of Robert Long of Greene Co., IN; William W. of Laurel Co., KY; Lemuel or Samuel & Joel, both of Greene Co., IN. Soldier's son, Free, died in IL (no date given) leaving children: Morgan F., Wallace P., Greenberry R., William A., Jane, Elizabeth, Caroline, and Peggy. In 1826, soldier had referred to a single son, Easom or Easonn, aged 22.

William served in the Revolutionary War, enlisting at "The Royal Oak" a plantation owned by the Campbell family, in Montgomery Co., Va. He enlisted for two three year terms, apparently came back on furlough to see his family (could this be when his first wife died?), fell from his horse, broke a leg and wasn't able to return. He paid James Street to serve his second term, Wm rec'd two discharges which he lost when his house burned in Kentucky.


Sexton Family Research

Ancestors of Kathy Thomas Sexton and James Sexton --------------------

The following information reported by: Mrs L.G. Fuson of Williamsburg, Ky.

Pvt. William Saxson/Sexson, Revolutionary War Soldier, No. W-8711, was born in Augusta Co., VA., on 11 Feb 1747, the son of James Sexson and Mary Lee. James Saxson/Sexson came to this country from Ireland, along with his brother William, in the first half of the 18th century.

William volunteered for the Army in Augusta Co., VA., in May 1776, enlisted for a period of six years. He served three years under Col. William Campbell. After serving this three year period, he was granted a furlough, while at Schulkill, Delaware. He returned home and while there fell from a horse and broke his shoulder and kneecap, making it impossible for him to return to service. He paid Mr. William Street the sum of $200.00 and a suit of clothes to substitute for him. He received an honorable discharge and credit for six years service.

He married Leah Free (Fiere/Ferree), who was the daughter of Isaac Ferree of Pennsylvania, sho went from Ft. Cumberland PA., in 1748, to Virginia, where he settled on Patterson Creek, on the Fairfax Grant. Leah was born at New River, Grayson Co., VA., in 1766. The family moved to Wythe Co., VA., where they lived for 25 years, before coming to the Knox-Whitley County area. Two of William's sons, Isaac and James came to Knox County long before their parents came, William and Leah had 12 children, 10 sons and 2 daughters.

William Saxson/Sexson applied for a pension on 06 July 1826, after his house and entire contents was destroyed by fire. His application is on file at the Courthouse at Williamsburg, Ky. His greatest loss from the fire seemed to have been his Masonic papers, reportedly signed by George Washingon. He died on 31 December 1833 and is buried at the Alsip Cemetery, near the Oak Grove School, on the Cumberland Falls Highway.

Leah Saxson/Sexson, after the death of her husband went to Green Co., Indiana, to live with some of her children and died there on 18 Aug. 1839. She is buried there.

William Sexson had two brothers, John and Benjamin, who were also in the Revolutionary War. John Sexson married Elizabeth Ingram, Grayson Co., VA., on 10 Nov. 1795 and moved to Cox's Mill, Hazel Green, Ky. Benjamin Sexson, born 1755, married Comfort Smith and lived in Bath Co., Ky.

Contributor:46878683 Supposed children of WILLIAM SEXTON and unknown first wife are: 8. i. ISAAC3 SEXTON, b. Abt. 1774, VA; d. August 1840, Shelby Co., IN. 9. ii. ARCHIBALD SEXTON, b. Abt. 1775, Grayson Co., VA; d. Bef. 1820. 10. iii. OLIVIA JANE SEXTON, b. Abt. 1782; d. Unknown.

Children of WILLIAM SEXTON and LEAH FREE are: 11. iv. JACOB3 SEXTON, b. 1784, Grayson Co, Va; d. Bef. August 12, 1852, Des Moines, IA. 12. v. ENOCH SEXTON, b. September 12, 1785, Grayson Co., VA; d. October 29, 1875, Spruce Creek, Whitley, KY. 13. vi. MARGARET SEXTON, b. Abt. 1786, Grayson, VA; d. Bet. 1850 - 1860, Greene Co., IN. 14. vii. JAMES SEXTON, b. Abt. 1788, Wayne, Grayson, VA; d. 1858, Bloomington , Monroe, IN. 15. viii. FREDERICK FREE SEXTON, b. December 16, 1791, Grayson Co., VA; d. December 24, 1843, Ashgrove, Shelby, Illinois. 16. ix. WILLIAM WALLACE SEXTON, b. Abt. 1794, Grayson Co., VA; d. Unknown. 17. x. LEMUEL SEXTON, b. January 15, 1799, Grayson Co., VA; d. March 31, 1885, Clearmont, Nodaway, Missouri. 18. xi. JOEL SEXTON, b. August 17, 1801, Grayson Co, Va; d. October 13, 1868, Greene Co., IN. xii. ESOM SEXTON, b. Abt. 1803, Grayson Co., VA; d. Bef. 1849, Whitley Co., KY.

State of Indiana Lawrence Co., SS

I, Gustavus Clark, clerk of court of Probate of said County, holden at Bedford in and for said County, do hereby certify that satisfactory evidence has been exhibited at said Court at its November term A. D. 1848,

that William Sexson, late of the county of Whitely and state of Kentucky, was a pensioner of the United States for his service, as a soldier of the Revolution: that he was a resident of the said county of Whitely and died in said county on the 31st day of December in the year eighteen hundred and twenty-nine:

that he left a widow Leah Sexson and the following children by his said widow, towit: james Sexson, Enoch Sexson, Jacob Sexson, Peggy Long (wife of Robert Long), William Sexson, Lemuel Sexson and Joel Sexson,

and the following grandchildren by their son Free Sexson, deceased, towit: Morgan F. Sexson, Wallace P. Sexson, Greenberry R. Sexson, William A. Sexson, Jane Sexson, Elizabeth Sexson, Peggy Sexson, Carolyn Sexson and Polly Sexson;

that said Leah Sexson survived her said husband until the eighteenth day of August Eighteen hundred and thirty-nine when she also died at Greene County, Indiana without having married since the death of her said husband or without having any other children.

In testimony whereof I have hereunto subscribed my name and affixed the seal of said court the same being my seal of office at Bedford this 25th day of November, A. D. 1848

(signed) Gustavus Clark, Clk

by Geo. A. Thornton, Dep.

Family links:

 Leah Virginia Free Sexson (1766 - 1839)

 Isaac Sexton (1780 - 1840)*
 Olivia Jane Sexton Snyder (1780 - 1848)*
 Enoch Sexton (1786 - 1875)*
 James Sexton (1790 - 1854)*
 Free Sexson (1791 - 1843)*
 William Wallace Sexton (1794 - 1860)*
 Joel Banton Sexson (1800 - 1868)*
  • Calculated relationship

Inscription: Virginia PVT Continental Line Revolutionary War

Burial: R.H. Alsip Cemetery Corbin Whitley County Kentucky, USA

view all 17

William (William Lemuel) Sexton [ Sexson, Saxton] (5)'s Timeline

February 11, 1747
11 Feb 1747/1748 Augusta Co. Va.
Age 25
Wythe / Montgomery, Virginia
Age 26
Whitley, Kentucky, United States
Age 35
Grayson, Virginia, United States
September 12, 1785
Age 38
Grayson, Virginia, United States
Age 37
Montgomery, Virginia, United States
Age 40
Abt 1786/1788 , Wythe, Virginia
Age 41
1778/1788, , Augusta or Grayson, Virginia
February 16, 1790
Age 43
Wythe or Grayson, Virginia
Age 47
Grayson, Virginia