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Henry Bray

Birthdate: (79)
Birthplace: England
Death: February 11, 1794 (75-83)
Chatham, Chatham, NC, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Henry Bray; Henry Bray; UNKNOWN Jones and Ann Bray
Husband of Mary Wilson
Father of Henry B Bray, Jr. and Elizabeth Poe

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Henry Bray

  1. ID: I54587325
  2. Name: Henry BRAY
  3. Given Name: Henry
  4. Surname: Bray
  5. Sex: M
  6. Birth: Abt 1715 in ,,,England
  7. Death: 1794 in ,,Chatham,Nc
  8. Title: I
  9. LDS Baptism: Submitted
  10. Endowment: Submitted
  11. Sealing Child: Submitted
  12. Note:
   Name Suffix: I
   Bray Family records compiled by Perry A. Bray and published in "Bray Nostalgia"
   by Cheryl Clark;
   Orange County, North Carolina, Deeds and Court Records;
   Earl of Granville Patents and Land Grants;
   Chatham County, North Carolina, Deeds;
   Chatham County, North Carolina, Original Wills;
   "Bray Notalgia," published by Cheryl Clark, Vol.3, #2, pp.50-1, Oct. 1987, from
   family records of Eileen Skibo, 513 East 17th St., Cheyenne, WY, 82001, which
   were compiled over a twenty year period prior to 1971 by Dwight Bray and others
   and verified by William Perry Johnson, but no documentation listed;
   "Bray Nostalgia," published by Cheryl Clark, Vol.2, #3, p.3;
   Bray family folklore lists that Henry Bray, I, the emigrant ancestor, lived to
   be one hundred and thirteen years old. Therefore, if this information is
   accurate, his will which was proved in 1794 in Chatham County, North Carolina,
   indicates that he was born in 1676. However, this seems unlikely, particularly
   since the same source of information lists that his son, Henry Bray, II, who
   married Sarah Yokley, was born about 1742 (made out his will in 1812), which
   indicates that his father, Henry Bray, I, would have been age sixty six at the
   time of his son's birth. In addition, there is no documentation to support the
   above listed age for Henry or for the marriage to his wife who is listed as
   Mary Wilson. This information is similar to and appears to have been taken
   from the information on Edward Bray, I, which has been handed down by "word
   of mouth," from Susan Bray, married name Burris, who was the daughter of
   Edward Bray, III, and his wife Elizabeth Shelton.
   There are also several other stories about early Henry Brays of
   Virginia and Maryland and a few about an Edward Bray who is listed as the
   immigrant ancestor of the Henry and Edward Bray, who appear to have been
   brothers, who resided in Orange and Chatham County as early as 1748 according
   to Orange County deeds and land records. This story lists that Edward Bray was
   the immigrant ancestor, having come to America in 1699. According to this
   story, Edward Bray the immigrant, would have been born about 1675, and would
   have been of the right age to have been the father of Henry and Edward Bray,
   the progenitors of the Bray families residing in Orange, Chatham, and Randolph
   Counties of North Carolina;
   Of the two accounts listed above, the one for Edward Bray appears to be
   most accurate according to approximate ages, name, and residence patterns,
   which correspond with the "Memoirs," of Susan Bray, born 1836, and died
   1914, daughter of Edward Bray, III, and Elizabeth Shelton, which were written
   in 1899 during the organization of the Bray-Shelton family reunion.

Father: Edward BRAY b: Abt 1685 in England

Marriage 1 Mary or Marie WILSON b: 1717 in Chatham,Nc

   * Married: in Chatham,North Carolina
   * Sealing Spouse: Submitted


  1. Has Children Henry BRAY b: Abt 1742 in ,,,Va
  2. Has No Children Elizabeth BRAY b: Abt 1746
  3. Has No Children Catherine BRAY b: Abt 1748
  4. Has No Children Mary BRAY b: Abt 1750
  5. Has No Children Sarah BRAY b: Abt 1752



  1. ID: I17332
  2. Name: Henry Bray
  3. Prefix: #4
  4. Given Name: Henry
  5. Surname: Bray
  6. Sex: M
  7. Change Date: 15 Jun 2006
  8. Note:
   Henry granted 300 acres in Orange County, North Carolina on 30 June 1762. The land was surveyed by his sons Henry and Edward on 26 November 1761. Henry was probably recruited to Orange County by Herman Husbands, a quaker and leading figure in the Regulator movement of the 1760's in Orange County. The grant was witnessed by William Lacy and Joseph or James Watson.
   Henry signed the grant HB and it is noted as "his mark". This could indicate that he was illiterate.
   Henry's death probably occurred between 1790 and 1794. Records from the Chatham County Court minutes show that in 1790 he was appointed administrator of the estate of Elizabeth Herrin and Phillip Herrin. In November of 1791 the Court minutes indicate that Henry Bray, Junr submitted an account of payments to creditors in the estate of the Herrins. This probably means that Henry Sr was dead or unable to complete the administration of the estate.
   Burial: 1794 Chatham County, North Carolina
   The following is all from Amelia Morrow:
   From Brooks and Kindred Families by Ida Brooks Kellam, 1950: "Gentleman" Henry Bray came to Chatham County, North Carolina, about 1754 and built his first residence in Matthews Township about 150 yards slightly northwest of the house where Richard Bray and Matilda Schmidt Paschal live. S. W. Paschal has said, 'I can first remember the lot was enclosed and had a fine lawn of short English lawn grass near the house site, and around for some distances were walnut trees, apple trees, some of the said to have been brought from England, as were all the old perennial garden vegetables, which were transferred to Mother's vegetable garden when Gentleman Henry moved, such things as horseradish, comfrey, rhubarb and garlic.' About 1783 he lift his first home and moved to a new place a mile or two south of Brush Creek Church." Siler City, NC history: The land on which Siler City eventually appeared was first mentioned in a request for a deed in 1754 by Herman Husband, a resident of the Sandy Creek community of Randolph County. The deed awarded him in 1757, was for 640 acres in the fork of Love's Creek entitled "The Desolate Tract". In 1769, Henry Bray purchased the tract and unlike Husband, probably settled somewhere in the vicinity; the Bray name still exists today as a prominent family name in the Siler City area. (Chatham Online)
   According to Mahala Bray Brown, in a letter dated 20, Aug 1891, she said, "Henry Sr. was her great-grandfather and he came to America sometime before the Revolutionary War. Henry Jr. was her grandfather and he served in the seven-year war (French and Indian War). She said her great-grandmother's name was Wilson."
   There's some confusion about just how many Henry Brays there were and which ones did what. There is a family legend that this Henry was the immigrant, coming to America in the late 1600s as a young man, having run away from being an apprentice in London. He quarreled with the tailor he worked for and hit over the head. Fearing he had killed him, he got passage to Maryland telling them that his uncle Dr. Thomas Bray would pay for the passage. There is record that money raised under the name of Dr. Thomas Bray was used to pay for passage of a Henry Bray in 1698, but there is no record found yet of a brother of Thomas who could have been the father of Henry. This same legend says Henry lived to be 113. Hard to believe, but oft-repeated. A Henry Bray shows up with land in North Carolina in the 1720s. From there on there are usually several Henry's owning and trading land in the area, complicating efforts to sort them all out.
  1. Birth: 1715 in London, England
  2. Death: 11 FEB 1794 in Chatham County, North Carolina
  3. Will: 17 JUN 1790 Chatham County, North Carolina
  4. Note:
   This file was contributed for use in the USGenWeb Archives by:
   Sue Ashby
   Will of Henry Bray, dated 17 June, 1790 - no probate date.
   Chatham Co., NC, Record of Estates, pg. 4b, 5
   NC State Archives film # C.002.500
   In the Name of God amen I Henry Bray of the County Chatham and State
   North carolina being weak and inform of Body but of perfect mind and
   memory thanks be God Calling to mind the mortallity of my Body and
   knowing that it is appointed once for all men to die do make and ordain
   this my last Will and Testament, that is to say, principally and first
   of all I give and recommend my soul into the hands of Almighty God that
   gave it and my Body I recommend to the earth to be burried in a decent
   christain Burial at the discression of my Executor and as touching such
   worldly Estate wherewith it has please god to bless me in this life I
   give and dispose in the following manner_____
   Item I give and bequeath to Mary Bray my dearly beloved wife one Bed
   and furniture and her Saddle as her own property and the third part of
   all the rest of my household goods Chattles and moveable Estate as her
   own property and the use of my home Plantation so long as she continues
   to be my widow or as long as she pleases to live thereon except she
   Item I give and bequeath to my son Edward Bray the sum of Twenty
   Shillings to him and his Heirs forever; ___ Item I give and bequeath to
   my son Henry Bray my Land and all the remaining two thirds of my Estate
   with his paying out of my Estate the sum of five pounds to each of my
   Daughters Vix. Sarah Ramsour, Mary Johnson, Catharine Jones & Elizabeth
   Poe) to him & his heirs forever_ I hereby constitute make and ordain my
   Son Henry Bray Sole Executor of this my last Will and Testament and I
   do hereby utterly disallow revoke and disannull all and every other
   former Testaments, Wills, Legaces, bequests and Executors by me in any
   wise before named willed and Bequeathed ratifying and confirming this
   and no other to be my last Will and testament In Witness whereof I have
   hereunto set my hand and seal this seventeenth day June one Thousand
   seven hundred and ninety
   Signed Seal'd and pronounced
   in presence of
   Thos Ragland
   Henry Bray Signed Henry (his "H" mark) Bray Seal
   A Copy Test
   John Ramsey C.C.
   Henry Bray, Jr. and his wife, M. Sarah Yokley, inherited the bulk of the
   estate of his father in Chatham Co, NC. There is no record that they
   were Quakers.
   The other son, Edward Bray and wife, Sarah Maynard, settled in Surry Co,
   Apparently Sarah was Quaker and Edward was not at the time of their
   since she was condemned in VA for "marrying out of unity."
   Their son, Henry Bray, b 22 Aug 1755, and wife, Keziah Jones, settled in
   Morgan Co, IN and belonged to the White Lick Meeting.
   Son, Joseph and wife, Elizabeth Lindsey, may have settled in Morgan Co,
   Son, Richard Bray, may have gone to Monroe Co, KY.
   Son, Edward, and wife, Ann Dowdy, are thought to have settled in Monroe
   Son, John Bray, and wife, Jane Unknown.
   Possible daughter, Sarah Bray, who married Elijah Graham.

Father: Edward Bray b: ABT 1685 in of London County, Middlesex, England

Mother: (Mrs. Edward Bray)

Marriage 1 Mary Wilson b: ABT 1717 in Chatham County, North Carolina

   * Married: ABT 1731 in Monocacy Hundred, Prince George County, Maryland


  1. Has No Children Sarah Bray b: 31 MAR 1732 in Frederick County, Maryland
  2. Has No Children Anna Maria Bray b: 15 APR 1733 in Frederick County, Maryland
  3. Has No Children Susannah Bray b: 10 MAR 1735 in Frederick County, Maryland
  4. Has No Children Catherine Bray b: 16 APR 1737 in Chatham County, North Carolina
  5. Has No Children Elizabeth Bray b: 3 NOV 1739 in Frederick County, Maryland
  6. Has Children Henry Bray b: 1742 in Orange County, North Carolina
  7. Has No Children Edward Bray b: ABT 1744 in Maryland

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Henry Bray's Timeline

Age 24
Age 27
Monocacy Hundred, Maryland, United States
February 11, 1794
Age 79
Chatham, Chatham, NC, United States