John Owsley, Sr

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John Owsley, Sr's Geni Profile

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John Owsley, Sr

Birthdate: (31)
Birthplace: Prince William, Virginia, United States
Death: September 14, 1764 (27-35)
Louden, Virginia, United States (murdered by Francis Kennedy)
Place of Burial: Louden, Virginia, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of N.N. and Ann Owsley
Husband of Ann Owsley
Father of Robert Housley; Mary Rice; John Lynch Owsley, II; Sarah Botts; Robert Robin Owsley and 1 other
Half brother of John Owsley, 1st; Elizabeth Wells; Moses Owsley; John Owsley; William Owsley and 7 others

Occupation: Farmer & served in French & Indian War w/ distant cousin G. Washington
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About John Owsley, Sr

Upon his father's death in 1751, John inherited 100 acres of land adjoining that of his brother Thomas who had received the other 180 acres of the same larger tract. Originally located in Prince William County, the land became a part of Fairfax County in 1742 and of Loudoun County in 1757 as new counties were formed and boundaries adjusted accordingly. Today the land is located near the Dulles International Airport.

On 16 November 1756, John became the guardian of his brother Pointz after the deaths of both their father and mother. In 1758, John served under Captain Nicholas Minor in the Virginia Militia from Loudoun County. His militia service took place during the French and Indian War (1754-1763) for which he was later paid 15 shillings. He served as Vestryman for Cameron Parish, Loudoun County, from 10 September 1759, until his death. Vestryman were responsible for assisting the minister and churchwardens in the administration of church affairs, which included guarding public morality, laying the parish levy, and caring for the poor. By a deed dated 12 December 1763, he sold the land he had inherited from his father to his brother Thomas Owsley (Loudoun deeds D-195). His widow completed the transaction on March 12, 1765 (D-392).

From 1759 through 1764, John appeared as plaintiff, defendant, and witness in numerous cases brought before the court in Loudoun County, Virginia. On 9 November 1763, John was charged with breach of peace. His own brother, Thomas, was a witness against him. On 16 March 1764, a suit was brought against John Owsley by William Chilton for trespass and assault and battery. Also on the same date, a suit was brought against William Chilton by John Owsley for the same charges.

On 14 September 1764, in Loudoun County, John was murdered by Francis Kennedy who was questioned and found guilty at Loudoun County on October 8, 1764, and remanded for trial before the court of Oyer and Terminer at Williamsburg, Virginia. Kennedy was tried for the murder on 11 December 1764. At that time, Williamsburg was the state capital and seat of the Court of Oyer and Terminer, responsible for trials of the more serious cases, including murder.

Sources of information on John Owsley disagree over the details of the trial. One website author says the two surviving Williamsburg newspaper issues of the Virginia Gazette for December 1764 make no mention of the trial or its outcome. It is thus open for speculation. What is clear to that author, though, is that no record of Francis Kennedy exists in Loudoun County after 1764. What she did find was a Bible of William Owsley which states "Francis Kennedy was found guilty of the murder and was executed."

The second website author relates that John's brother and sister, Newdigate Owsley and Sarah Owsley, were witnesses against Kennedy. The same author says that records show that Francis Kennedy was found guilty of the murder of John Owsley. He found that Kennedy later received a pardon and was released from jail. Evidently, Kennedy had inflicted fatal stab wounds to John Owsley during a brawl.

However the trial came out, Ann Owsley must have had a difficult time raising her five children after her husband's death. She must have been in her early 30's. She declined to administer her husband's estate on 12 March 1765. That same day, she sold the remaining land in her possession to her brother-in-law Thomas Owsley for 10 pounds. John's estate was finally appraised in 1767, and its contents were one rifle and one millstone. The total value was 4 pounds.

John was murdered in Loudoun County Va. in 1774 by a man Named Francis Kennedy. John Owsley served in the Loudoun county Virginia Militia and his Militia service took place during the French and Indian war of 1754-1763 He was Married to Ann Stephens

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John Owsley, Sr's Timeline

Prince William, Virginia, United States
Age 23
Age 23
November 6, 1757
Age 24
Goose Creek, Virginia, United States
Age 26
Age 26
Age 28
September 14, 1764
Age 31
Louden, Virginia, United States
November 18, 1939
Age 31