The Ringing of the Bells–Part Six: Magruder Family Patriarch– Alexander Magruder (1610-1677): His First Marriage

Marker is in Annapolis, Maryland, in Anne Arundel County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of College Avenue (Maryland Route 450) and Prince George Street, on the left when traveling east. Click for map. Marker is a To honor the three hundredth anniversary of the coming to Maryland circa 1652 of Alexander Magruder, founder and progenitor of the Magruder family in America, and to the men of his blood who have been students at St. John's College.

Marker is in Annapolis, Maryland, in Anne Arundel County. Marker is “To honor the three hundredth anniversary of the coming to Maryland circa 1652 of Alexander Magruder, founder and progenitor of the Magruder family in America, and to the men of his blood who have been students at St. John’s College.” Submitted to by LauraCleland 26 Apr 2009


Birth: 1610
Perth and Kinross, Scotland
Death: 1677
Calvert County
Maryland, USA

Birthplace, Belliclone, Madderty, Perth, Scotland. Alexander Magruder “The Immigrant” arrived in what is now Maryland from Scotland as an indentured servant in 1652. He later became a big landowner and tobacco farmer. He died and was buried at his home at “Anchovie Hills”, which was located southeast of what is now Magruder’s Ferry and Croom Rd., Brandywine, MD. At that time, Brandywine was called Baden and was in Calvert county, but is now in Prince George’s county. He was the ancestor of virtually all white Magruders in America (we are still researching African-American descents). For more information about Alexander and Magruders history, go to His headstone has not been found, that I know of, and the site is on a private wildlife refuge now.Family links:
Samuel Magruder (1654 – 1711)**Calculated relationship
Magruder Family Cemetery
Prince George’s County
Maryland, USA
Created by: JillGat
Record added: May 08, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 89803827 (1)


About 1712, Howard’s sixth great-grandparents, John Beall (1688-1742) and Verlinda/Verlinder Magruder (1690-1745) married in Prince George’s County, Maryland. Thus began the union of two great families in Howard’s line and a direct connection to another member of the Beall family: Col. Ninian Beall (1625-1725). Verlinda was the daughter of Col. Samuel Magruder (1654-1711) and Sarah Beall (1669-1734), [Howard’s seventh great-grandparents] and the granddaughter of Alexander Magruder (1610-1677) and his second wife Margaret Sarah Braithwaite (1635-1671). Sarah Beall was reportedly the daughter of Col. Ninian Beall (1625-1725) and Ruth Polly Moore (1652-1707). This connection makes Col. Ninian Beall and Ruth Polly Moore Howard’s eighth great-grandparents on this line. He has another connection to Ninian Beall through another daughter. I also have the same connection. But I will discuss that in a later article.

As is noted in the above Find-a-Grave Memorial, Alexander Magruder “was the ancestor of virtually all white Magruders in America.” (2)  Howard and I were in a local Family History Center in the early 1990s when Howard discovered his Magruders. He talked about them with a volunteer who was on duty that day. Wise person that I can sometimes be, I made the following remark: “And they were also involved in Watergate!”  Everyone laughed. Watergate was the only knowledge I had of the Magruder name in the early 1990s. Given the statement in the Alexander Magruder’s Find-a-Grave Memorial above, information obtained from a brief articled titled, Jeb Stuart Magruder (1934-2014) (3) and information I discovered from Ancestry while looking at Jeb Stuart Magruder’s line, Howard and Jeb Stuart Magruder were distant cousins. He descends from Samuel Magruder and Sarah Beall through their son, Samuel. Howard descends from Samuel Magruder and Sarah Beall through their daughter, Verlinda. And my connection is through Col. Ninian’s daughter I will be discussing in a later article. Jeb Stuart Magruder is my 8th cousin once removed.

Alexander Magruder (1610-1677)

The Magruders have a long history.  According to British Roots of Maryland Families, Alexander Magruder was a descendant of Robert II of Scotland and of Charlemagne.(4)  According to a short biographical account submitted to by docinaustintexas:

Alexander Magruder/MacGruether ABT 1610 – 1677 b: ABT 1610 in Perthshire, Scotland d: July 25, 1677 in Calvert County/Prince Georges County, MD

“born in Cargill, Scotland, 1610, captured by Oliver Cromwell at the Battle of Worcester in 1651, sentenced to have his name proscribed from MacGregor to Magruder, and with 150 other prisoners was sent to the Maryland Colony of America. He was bound to some colonist for eight years service. He is thought to have married and started a family in Scotland before his exile, and had had a son Robert MacGregor educated in Edinburgh, who also came to America afterwards.”   ” Alexander MacGreuther, the immigrant, was an Officer in the army of Charles II. He was captured at the Battle of Worcester in 1651 and sent as a prisoner of war to Virginia through Barbados. In 1652 he ransomed himself and received a grant of 500 acres of land at “Turkey Buzzard Island” Calvert County, Md. which was near the Patuxent River. At the time of his death in 1677 he owned about 4000 acres of land known as “Craignaigh, Dumbland, Good Luck and Anchovie Hills.”

“He married three times, but our line descends through his first marriage to Margaret Braithwaite. She was the daughter of William Braithwaite who was a member of the First Assembly of MD in 1637; Commander of the Isle of Kent, in 1633 which was the earliest seat of the Proprietary Government of Maryland. He was acting Governor of the Province in 1644.”(5)

Another Ancestry article titled “Magruder Information” notes:


Of the three brothers Macgregor in the Battle of Worcester, James was killed, and Alexander and John were taken prisoner and sent to Barbados, whence they proceeded to Maryland.  By this time the two survivors had changed their name to MacGroother, which in time became Magruder.  John Magruder died without issue.  Alexander Magruder married as his first wife Margaret Braithwaite, daughter of William Braithwaite, Commander of the Isle of Kent, earliest seat of proprietary government in Maryland, member of the first General Assembly of the province, Acting Governor and cousin-german to Cecelius Calvert, second Lord Baltimore.  He married secondly Sarah Hawkins, and thirdly, Elizabeth Hawkins.  His son, Samuel Magruder I, born 1654 in Prince George County, married Sarah Beall, daughter of Col. Ninian Beall, and they became the ancestors of the numerous and prominent Magruders of Maryland, Virginia, Georgia, Mississippi, and elsewhere. (6)

Various researchers suggest that Alexander Magruder had three marriages. I agree that he did, but I differ with them in two respects. Some suggest that his first marriage took place in Europe.  I agree with that contention. About 1648, Alexander Magruder went to England where he met his first wife, a widow by the name of Elizabeth Swindells Greene (1607-1610-1650).  This article will focus on Elizabeth and her daughter Annapel Magruder (1649-1720).

Elizabeth Swindells was born between 1607-1610 in Bristol, Gloucester, England.(7) Her first husband was Thomas Greene (1606-bef. 1648), whom she married in Gloucester in 1627.(8)  Thomas’s first wife was Charity Pritcherds, whom he married June 16, 1623 in St Phillip & St Jacob’s, Bristol, Gloucester, England.(9) I first met Elizabeth Swindells several years ago when I was working on a book: Chasing the “Wild Bunch”: One Woman’s Journey.  Since then, I discovered that Elizabeth’s records have been jumbled with an Elizabeth Lynde and a few other Elizabeths, including another Elizabeth Swindells. I’m going back to basics here. Elizabeth and Thomas had two marriages each: one in which they were each married to someone else, and one in which they were married to each other. In Elizabeth’s case, her second husband was Alexander Magruder. At this time, I do not know whether Elizabeth and Thomas had children. Some people credit them with one son: Lieutenant Henry Greene (1638-1717)–and one daughter: Hannah Greene (1647-1708). Hannah was reportedly born in Massachusetts. Their Thomas Greene apparently went to Massachusetts in 1648. Some people believe his wife went with him and died in Massachusetts. Others do not know when or where she died. I refer back to the record-jumbling between Elizabeth Swindells, Elizabeth Lynde and the other Elizabeth Swindells. I believe Thomas Greene–my Elizabeth Swindell’s husband–died in England before 1648, the year the widow Elizabeth Swindells Greene met and married Alexander Magruder. The Magruders may have remained in England through the birth of their daughter Annaple Magruder (1649-1720), who was born in Bristol, Gloucester, England in 1649. Her mother (Elizabeth Swindells Greene Magruder) may have died in childbirth.

My first introduction to these people came through Annaple. She would eventually immigrate to America and settle in Maryland, where she married Thomas Hooke (1645-1697) about 1679. My interest in this pair stems from their son, James Hooke (1682-1733). Father of the pioneer Hooke/Hook families of southwestern Pennsylvania and my sixth cousin nine times removed, James Hooke married Margaret Thrasher (1690-1738). Margaret was the daughter of Benjamin Thrasher (1668-1741) and Mary Beall??? (1673-1743). Some people think that Mary was a daughter of John Beall and Verlinda Magruder. Some people think she was the daughter of James Beall and Sarah Pearce. Other people think that she was not a Beall at all and that she may have been a Ridgely. I have her listed on my ancestral tree as Mary Ridgely or Beall. The Hookes/Hooks and Thrashers intermarried with my Inghram and Fee families in Colonial Washington and Greene Counties, Pennsylvania.

Thomas Hooke arrived in Maryland in 1668 (10). He married Annaple Magruder about 1679 in Prince George’s County, Maryland. I do not know when Annaple arrived in Maryland. After her mother’s death, it appears Alexander Magruder returned to Scotland. He no doubt took his daughter with him and placed her with relatives there. Then in 1651 he was involved in the Battle of Worcester, resulting in his capture and transportation over seas. He married Margaret “Sarah” Braithwait (1635-1670/1) in Prince George’s County,  in 1653. It is possible that he brought young Annaple to Maryland at that time.  She is not mentioned in his will, so perhaps he had already provided for her. She did not marry until several years after his death. [Note: Concerning Alexander Magruder’s purported son Robert McGregor who was educated in Scotland–I have not pursued him as yet. He may become a subject of a later article.]

In an article titled “Thomas Hooke: Arrival, Life, Will”, the author notes:

Thomas Hooke was born near London, England, about 1645 to 1650 and died in Prince George County, Maryland, late in 1697 or early in 1698. He came to Maryland on the ship “Goulden Wheat Sheaf” of London in April, 1668. He was bound to Captain James Connaway, merchant of Ratcliffe, County of Middlesex, and the Master of the “Goulden Wheat Sheaf” whom tradition says was his uncle, until he had paid for his passage. As a part of his passage pay he relinquished his right to fifty acres of land that Lord Baltimore was then giving to all settlers who settled within his domains. Fifty others came on the same ship with Thomas and the land to which they were entitled was granted to Captain Connaway in one tract on the northern bank of the Severn River directly north of what is now the city of Annapolis. Here Thomas Hooke lived and labored. How long was required for him to become a freeman is not known, but old records left by Captain Connaway, wherein he stated as early as August of the year 1668 that he had used his rights so far as Thomas Hooke and two others were concerned, leads one to believe that these three had been transported on some special terms not accorded the others. Unfortunately, manyold Maryland records were lost or destroyed during the revolution of 1688 when the Capitol of the colony was removed from St. Marys to what is now Annapolis so that much of the personal history of the early settlers is undoubtedly missing. The Archives of Maryland, however, mentions` Thomas Hooke as a taxable freeman in 1677 when he was assessed thirty pounds of tobacco to help pay the expenses of the colonies’ expedition against the Nanticote Indians. He was the only person in the colony by the name of Hooke who was assessed. In 1681 he was again assessed by the General Assembly of Maryland for thirty pounds of tobacco to help pay expenses incurred for the “Public Good.” At this time there was another Hooke in the colony whose name was on the tax lists. He was Jeremiah Hooke who came to Maryland as an immigrant in June, 1670.

Somewhere about 1680, Thomas Hooke moved to what is now Prince George County and lived on leased land not far from the present site of Laurel. Here he made his will on September 23d, 1697, and left his property to sons James and Thomas with the provision that both sons remain with their mother, “until they be on and twenty years of Eage.” The full text of the will as recorded in Liber I, page 4, Upper Marlboro, Maryland, is as follows

“The last Will and Testament of Thomas Hooke of Prince George County, Province of Maryland.

“In the name of God Amen, first I bequeath my soul to God who gave it and my body to the ground and after my funeral charges is paid all my debts yt can be made hinistly apps I bequeath as followeth-My will is that my sonn James Hook and my sunn Thomas Hook shall remain with their mother until they be on and twenty years of Eage and if please God, my wife should dy the shall booth be at Eage and at their own disposing, Itam I give to my sunn James my cow betey and all her female increase and to my sunn Thomas I give my cow Pritey and all her female increase and the rest of my good and Chattele I leave to my wyfs disposing. This is my will in witness whereof I have unto put my hand and Seall this 23rd day of September 1697.”

Wittnesses- Henry Dryden
Robert Bigg Signed Thomas Hook Joseph Harrison

It is to be said that Thomas signed his will with a mark and that the final “e” was omitted. All the early records used the final letter and his wife Annaple who signed the administration bond on May 26, 1698, in her own hand, wrote the name Hooke. Undoubtedly the person who wrote the will carelessly omitted the final letter. Succeeding generations, however, almost universally used the simpler spelling.

The inventory of the estate, which listed among other things, a crop of tobacco, three cows and calves, one barron cow, three horses and one yearling, one mare, eight head of hogs, one spinning wheel, one pad, saddle and bridle, money and household utensials, was appraised by Joseph Harrison and James Watts on the 8th of June, 1699, and signed by them. The administrators of the estate were John Wright and “his wife Annaple” and they appeared and swore to the inventory, July 24, 1699. It is quite evident, therefore, that Annaple Hooke married John Wright some time between May 26, 1698, and July 24, 1699.

Thomas Hooke, undoubtedly, was an adherent of the English Church from his first appearance in Maryland. While there are no records to prove this, it is known that his son James and his grandchildren James and John were active members in that denomination. The family in England, for the most part, remained loyal to the established church. Some, however, became militant Puritans and after the fall of the Commonwealth were obliged to seek aid and protection from their loyal kin, who always stood well with Parliament, to avoid persecution.

Thomas Hooke, Jr., son of Thomas and Annaple Hooke, seems to have dropped out of sight altogether. The son James Hook first entered the records of Prince George County in 1708. On November 17 of that year, according to the Queen Anne Parish records, Mary Hook, daughter of James and Margaret Hook, was born.(11)


Notes from the Maryland State Archives follow:

Court Case

23 June 1696Prince George’s County, Maryland, USA

Ordered that Edward Williams by consent of this Court be bound out to Thomas Hook and Annabell his wife according to Act of Assembly.

Administration Bond

26 May 1698Prince George’s County, Maryland, USA

Signed Administration Bond for the Estate of Thomas Hooke as Annaple Hooke


1699Prince George’s County, Maryland, USA

John Wright and wife Annaple were administrators of the Estate of Thomas Hooke 14 July 1699 signed for Inventory of estate of Thomas Hooke.


Thomas died an heir to a large fortune in England reportedly in Glouchestershire (12)

Annaple married John Wright shortly after the death of her husband, Thomas Hooke.  Very little is known about him. He was born in 1659 in England, and he died February 11, 1722 in Anne Arundel County, Maryland. John appears to have multiple marriages, and he may have been married to more than one wife at the same time. He arrived in Maryland in 1684, but a note on my ancestral chart reads as follows:

Based on the many “Arrival” dates for John Wright, it appears he did a great deal of traveling to and from Maryland in the early to mid 1600’s, This suggests he was not ever an immigrant but a Capt or Merchant.(13)

Annaple died in 1720, and she is buried in Kent County, Maryland.

This article continues with Part Seven– Alexander Magruder (1610-1677): The Second and Third Marriages




(1) Alexander Magruder Find-a-Grave Memorial No. 89803827, created by JillGat 28 May 2012. Website. Date Accessed: 23 Jan 2016. Available online at

(2) Alexander Magruder Find-a-Grave Memorial No. 89803827, created by JillGat 28 May 2012. Website. Date Accessed: 23 Jan 2016. Available online at

(3) Jeb Stuart Magruder (1934-2014). from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Last modified, 16 Dec 2015. Date Accessed: 23 Jan 2016. Available online at

(4) British Roots of Maryland Families: Appendix: A Bibliography of Royal Descents by Robert Barnes., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 23 Jan 2016. Available online at

(5) “Alexander Magruder”. Submitted to by docinaustintexas 23 Nov 2007., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 23 Jan 2016. Available online at

(6) “Magruder Information”. Submitted to by csm1963 30 Aug 2010., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 23 Jan 2016. Available online at

(7) U.S. and International Marriage Records about Elizabeth Swindells and Thomas Greene., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 29 Jan 2016. Available online at

(8) U.S. and International Marriage Records about Elizabeth Swindells and Thomas Greene., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 29 Jan 2016. Available online at

(9) England Select Marriages, 1538-1973 about Thomas Greene and Charity Pritcherds., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 29 Jan 2016. Available online at

(10) U.S. and Canada, Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s about Thomas Hooke., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 29 Jan 2016. Available online at

(11) “Thomas Hooke: Arrival, Life, Will”, originally submitted by zaeppley on 12 Nov 2010., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 29 Jan 2016. Available online at

(12) Records from the Hall of Records, Maryland, State Archives. Annapolis, Maryland.

(13) Note concerning John Wright: Inman-Spence-Beall-Warfield Family Branches., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 29 Jan 2016. Available online at









The Ringing of the Bells–Part Five: John Beall (1688-1742)–an Introduction

[Note: Because of the complexity of this article, it will be divided into several sections as noted below.]


John Beall Last Will and Testament, 1742.

John Beall Last Will and Testament, 1742.

Birth: 1688
Upper Marlboro
Prince George’s County
Maryland, USA
Death: 1742
Prince George’s County
Maryland, USA

John Beall and Verlinda Magruder Beall, his wife are buried on the old Beall Farm which now resides in Frederick County, MD. (Prince George’s county lines were moved to accommodate the newly formed Frederick County in 1748.) No tombstone for either John or Verlinda Magruder Beall exists today.John Beall, son of Alexander Beall, Jr and Elizabeth Coombes, was born in 1688 in Upper Marlboro, Prince George’s County, Maryland. He married in 1712, Verlinda Magruder in the same county. He died in Prince George’s, Maryland in 1742.Will Box DD No 1 page 475; also Will , Liber 1 pages 235 & 340:
John’s will (Book 1,Page 340, Pr.George Co,Md.) states:
To wife Verlinda, The Grist Mill on the Eastern Branch of the Potomac River called “New Dumfries” and a tract called “Lone Head .” ..
To oldest son Samuel the “Charles & William”, where he now dwells and the “Benjamin” 13 9 acres…
To son Josias 5 shilings having already provided for him…
To son Basil 163 acre s of “Industry” to be conveyed by Andrew Hamilton, deceades adn 100 acres of “Popular Thicket ” near the Monacacy…
To daughter Sarah Offutt, wife of James, 200 acres of “New Dumfries. ” …
To sons John and Clement, The Mill after mothers death and tract “Black Esk” and “Chittams Addition”….Testators share of “Dispute” near Cabbin
John, 223 acres to be made over to me by my brother William or his heirs and the heirs of brother Charles Beall, late of Prince George’s County to be sold to pay debts, also 370 acres of “Poplar Thickett” and 100 acres o f “Three Friends Delight.”…Legacy left to me by my father Alexander Beall to be devided among my daughter Rebecca Magruder, wife of Nathan, Basil, Lucy, John, Hanna, Verlinder and Clement Beall.
Witnesses; James Pearce, John Brown, John Johnson.

As this will documents, John Beall, was the son of Alexander Beall and who was wed to Elizabeth Coombes of Maryland.

Children John and Verlinda Beall compiled from their wills:
Samuel Beall b. 1713
Josiah Beall b. 4 May 1715
Sarah Beall b. 1717 wife of James Offutt
Rebecca Beall b.1719 md. Nathan Magruder
Basil Beall b. 1721
Lucy Beall, b. 1723 spinster See Lucy’s will.
John Beall, b. 1726
Hannah Beall b. 1729
Verlinder Beall b. 1731
Clement Beall b. 1734

Family links:
Alexander Beall (1649 – 1744)
Elizabeth Coombes Beall (1650 – 1743)

Verlinder Magruder Beall (1690 – 1745)

Samuel Beall (1713 – 1778)*
Josiah Beall (1715 – 1768)*

*Calculated relationship

Zion Church Cemetery
Frederick County
Maryland, USA
Created by: Candee
Record added: Oct 09, 2014
Find A Grave Memorial# 137011995  (1)


For many years, some Beall researchers believed their connection with Col. Ninian Beall was lodged through one of this sons.  Howard’s aunt, Isabel “Belle” Clark Beall (1902-1990) (2), discovered John Beall (1688-1742) as Howard’s ancestor years ago by traveling to libraries, court houses, state archives, etc. And although his book contains many errors, Fielder Magruder Beall (1913-1981) is given credit for first discovering and accurately identifying John Beall (1688-1742) through his own research.(3) However, some Beall descendants were so determined to directly connect with Col. Ninian Beall (1625-1717), they devised a number of paths to get there per the following:

(1) Some decided that Col. Ninian’s son, John Beall (1647-1720), had to be this John;

(2) Some focused on Col. Ninian’s son, Ninian Beall, Jr. (1674-1710), completely overlooking the Alexander-John connections–and they still do! Just the other day, I noticed a comment someone made on my family tree, informing me that “many people consider Ninian Beall, Jr.” the proper connection–and not John;

(3) Some people accepted Alexander Beall (1649- as John’s father and Alexander Bell, Sr. as John’s grandfather, but they decided Alexander Bell, Sr. (1625-1655) was Col. Ninian’s brother.

All of these paths lead to nowhere. Based on Scottish parish records and existing Maryland records, the Alexander Bells (1625-1655) were cousins of Col. Ninian Beall, with the direct connection to Col. Ninian routed through the Magruders.

The complex nature of this article could result in a book, something I don’t plan to tackle at this stage of the game. Therefore, I will break this article up into sections.  This piece represents Part Five–the Introduction. A list of the remaining sections follows:

Part Six–John Beall (1688-1742)–The Magruder Family

Part Seven–John Beall (1688-1742)–Colonel Ninian Beall (1625-1717)

Part Eight–John Beall (1688-1742)–The Sarah Beall Controversy

Part Nine–John Beall (1688-1742)–The Rachel Beall Controversy

Part Ten–The Family of John Beall (1688-1742) and Verlinda Magruder (1690-1745)

After Part Ten, this series will return to its regular generational pattern.


This series continues with Part Six–John Beall (1688-1742): The Magruder Family




(1) John Beall Find-a-Grave Memorial No. 137011995, Record added by Candee, 09 Oct 2014. Website. Date accessed: 20 Jan 2016. Available online at

(2) The Research of Isabel “Belle” Clark Beall (1902-1990), North Carolina (ca 1930s-late 1950s)

(3) Beall, Fielder M. M. Colonial Families of the United States Descended from the Immigrants: Bell, Beal, Bale, Beale, Beall Family. ISBN 0788421476 (0-7884-2147-6).Softcover, Heritage Books, 2007



Ever play with these things in childhood?

I did! I think we called them Tinker Toys, however.  I remember spending hours building and rebuilding gigantic sculptures, only to dismantle them and start all over again.

That’s what I’m doing right now with Howard’s Beall line.

My plan was to have Part Five completed and ready to release.

That’s not going to happen! I ran into a nest of tangles!

So I’m in the process of unsnaggling that mess and putting it back into some sensible order.

It may be next week before the article is ready!

The Ringing of the Bells–Part four: Alexander Beall (1649-1744)

Zion Church Cemetery from Location of the old Beall Farm and Cemetery.

Zion Church Cemetery from Restoration completed 2011. Photo by Sandy & Dennis, August 17, 2011. Location of the old Beall Farm and Family Graveyard, Urbana, Frederick, Maryland

Alexander Beall (1649-1744) Find-a-Grave Memorial

Birth: Aug. 22, 1649
Saint Andrews
Fife, Scotland
Death: 1744
Upper Marlboro
Prince George’s County
Maryland, USA

Alexander Beall was buried in Prince George’s County on the Beall Farm which in 1748 was realigned into Frederick’s County, MD. He was the immigrant ancestor of my Beall line.
He was baptized 11 October 1649 in St. Andrews Church, in Fife County in Scotland. His brothers, William, James, and Andrew, all located in Maryland. They came to Maryland before 1685, according to the “Beall Genealogy” on pages 130-131.WILL OF ALEXANDER BEALL.
“In the name of God, Amen, the sixteenth day of January in the year of our Lord one thousand seven Hundred forty and three, I, Alexander Beall of Prince George County, being weak in Body but of Perfect mind and memory, thanks be given unto God therefore, Calling unto Mind the Mortality of my Body and knowing that it is appointed 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 God that gave it, and for my Body, I recommend it to the Earth to be buried in a Christian like and decent Manner at the Discretion of my Executors, nothing doubting but at the General Resurrection, I shall receive the Same again by the Mighty Power of God, and as touching such Worldly Estate wherewith it bath pleased God to bless me in this Life I give, devise and bequeath of the same in the following manner and form:
Item.–I give and bequeath to my Brother, Robert Beall, all my wareing apparel. I give and bequeath to Lingon Willson’s wife, Mary, my shase and harnise.
Item.–I give and bequeath to my Negro Woman, Ann, her freedom for ever.
Item.–I give and bequeath to my Son, William Beall, my Dwelling Plantation and Land, being part of two Tracts of Land called Neighborhood and Largoe, which Lyeth on the South Side of the South West Branch of Potuxen with All and Singular the appurtenances thereto belonging to him and his heirs forever.
Item.–I give and bequeath to my Son, Ninian Beall, the other part of a Tract of Land Called, Largoe, which I now hold and enjoy lying on the North Side of the aforesd South West Branch of Potuxen Commonly Called Menellas quarter, w’th all and Singular the appurtenances thereunto belonging, to him and his Heirs forever.
Item.–I give and bequeath that all the Remaining part of my Estate be divided into five Equall parts, that is to say, one fifth part to my Son, William Beall; one fifth part to my Son-in-law, John Jackson; one fifth part to my Son, Ninian Beall; one fifth part to my decd Son, John Beall’s children (that is nominated in his Will for the Division of the Remains of his Personall estate) to be equally Devided between them; and one fifth part to my Deceased Son, James Beall’s children now Living, to be equally divided between them, and my will is that my Estate be devided into five equall Lotts and two of them which I have given to my two Sons (John and James), children be exposed to sail by any one that the Majority of the said Children thats of Age shall agree on and the Profitts ariseing thereby to be Divided according to the true Intent of this my Will.
And Lastly, I do ordain, Constitute, my Sons, William Beall, Ninian Beall and John Jackson to be Ex’rs of this my last Will and Testament hereby making Void all other Will by me heretofore made,
in Witness, I have hereunto Sett my hand and Seal the day and year first above written.ALEX’R BEALL.
Probate, Sept 5th, 1744.
Meredith Davis.
John S. X. Curry.
Joseph Beall.”Dated: January 16, 1743
The Will was proved on September 5,1744 Prince George’s County vol 23 Pg 543-5Family links:
Elizabeth Coombes Beall (1650 – 1743)*Children:
John Beall (1688 – 1742)**Calculated relationship
Zion Church Cemetery
Frederick County
Maryland, USA
Created by: Candee
Record added: Oct 09, 2014
Find A Grave Memorial# 137013278(1)

Howard’s seventh great-grandfather, Alexander Bell/Beall, was born in August 22, 1649 in Saint Andrews and Saint Leonards, Fife, Scotland to Alexander Bell (1625-1655) and Elizabeth Ramsey (1625-1655). He was christened in St. Andrews Church October 11, 1649.(2)  He changed his surname spelling to Beall after arriving in Maryland. It is interesting to note that while the name is pronounced with a long E in most of the United States, it is still pronounced Bell in areas of the East Coast–something Howard and I encountered when we traveled there in the 1990s. Alexander was seventeen when he immigrated to Maryland in 1666.(3) There are actually two immigration records for an Alexander Bell (spelled Beall) to Maryland on the immigration lists. One is for seventeen-year old Alexander, who immigrated to Maryland in 1666. The other is for a thirty-one year old Alexander, who immigrated to Maryland in 1680.(4) This could be the same Alexander. He may have traveled back to Scotland on business and then returned to Maryland. An article titled “Biography” originally submitted by ShellyLDavis to states:

Some American genealogies state that Alexander Bell reached America in 1666, after collapse of Cromwellian rule. The continuing oppressive military rule of Charles II in Scotland, however, was ample cause to seek a life elsewhere. It is not known whether Alexander arrived with his parents or alone or indentured or via the Caribbean as a released military prisoner, as is said of his contemporary Ninian Beall.(5)

According to a collection of biographical notes compiled by Walter Beall of Winston-Salem, North Carolina:

Alexander Beall settled in Charles or Calvert County, from which Prince George’s County was formed in 1695. It is in the latter County that first references of him were found. Alexander and his descendants in Maryland, moved ever northward in the State, so it is probable that before he is found in 1716 living “halfway between Marlborough and the Eastern Branch” ‎(now the Anacostia River)‎, he had earlier settled to the south.
In 1695 Alexander was one of those signing an “Association Address presented to his Sacred Majesty ‎[King William]‎ upon news here arrived of the horrible intended conspiracy against his Royal person . . .,” and is described therein as one of the “Civil Officers & Magistrates of Prince Georges County. Among others signing the felicitation was Samuel Magruder, joint grandfather with Alexander of Samuel and Josiah Beall of this line.
By the year 1695 Alexander Beall must have had large holdings of land. Some of his later acquisitions have been identified as “Largoe” which lay on both sides of the southwest branch of the Patuxent River and a nearby tract named Neighbourhood both due east of now the District of Columbia, and Friendship Enlarged not far distant.
Court records of Prince George’s County disclose that in January, 1697, Alexander Beall was a member of the Grand Jury, in June 1698 he was a member of the Grand Inquest, and in March 1699 he was Foreman of the Grand Inquest.(5)

Alexander Beall had two wives, both named Elizabeth–something that makes research difficult. In all likelihood, first wife and the mother of his children was Elizabeth Coombs (1650-aft 1710), and his second wife was Elizabeth Buckerfield-Bates (1685-1743). Many people believe that both wives died in 1743–the year before Alexander–and that Alexander married the second wife after 1708.

Elizabeth Coombs was the daughter of Enoch Coombs (1625-1710) and his wife Barbara or Barbary (b. abt 1625). Enoch Coombs came from Largo, Fifeshire, Scotland and is probably the same Enoch Coombs in the following record collection:

Contributed by: James Hughes

URL: 1/000057/html/am57–27.html
URL title: Proceedings of the Provincial Court, 1666-1670 Volume 57, Page 27
Provincial Court Proceedings, 1666

Enoch Combs aged 28 yeares or thereabouts: Examined & saith
That Tho: Martin sould to Timothy Gooddridge one man seruant by
name Roger Williams to serue the said Gooddridge the full & Com-
pleate terme of flue yeares & further saith not
Sworne in open Cort Philip Caluert Enoch Coomes

1666 Enoch COMBES is subpoenaed in Calvert County, and testifies in Provincial Court that he is “aged 28 yeares or thereabouts: Examined & saith That Tho: MARTIN sould to Timothy GOODDRIDGE one man seruant by name Roger WILLIAMS to serue the said GOODDRIDGE the full & Compleate term of fiue yeares & further saith not. Sworne in open Court Philip CALUERT Enoch COOMES. (SW: Goodridge

By 1664 No County. Enoch COMBS, on 20 Mar 1664, demanded land for transportation of himself, wife Barbara, son Enoch, and Anne HAWTIN (servant). These four rights were sworn to by Enoch COMBS before Thomas TRUMAN, Deputy Commissioner, and “Upon the aforegoing assignment George LINGAN (see below) had warrant for 300 acres dated the 8th day of April, 1665, returned 19th day of October, 1665.” (Fanny Gough Manuscript)

Source is Liber CC:607/7:551 per Gibbs (CC:607 Film No.: SR 8201; Transcript. 7:551 [SR 7349]; MSA SC 4341-4166). Note that the date is probably old style in which case, the above oath was 20 Mar 1665 NS. George LINGAN was also of Calvert County. This may be the Enoch COOME who, with Joseph BOORMAN on 1 Apr 1660, witnessed a Lancaster County, Virginia deed gift of a cow from Adry HILL, widow, to Christopher KILBY (Rec 09 Nov 1664). Combs Researcher Ray Montgomery adds that the sameyear, Luke GARDNER transported William DARNALL, Jane OFFUN and an Anne HOWTON). Also note early ALVEY-HAWTIN marriage in England (Jeff Alvey’s Genealogical History Site)

16 Nov 1663 – 21 Mar 1665/66 Enoch COMES and Henry SEWELL witness a deed between William JOHNSON of Old Rappahannock County, Virginia and Frances ARMESTRONG [ARMSTRONG] of Talbot County. (Also Joseph HAMBRIDGE and Matthew HARDEN)

This record does not show whether it was executed in Talbot County, Maryland or in Rappahannock County, Virginia, but the witness Henry SEWELL implies Talbot County. Other than this record, the earliest found for Enoch in Maryland, he is not found in Talbot (although a later record implies he formerly resided there).

5 Jul 1669 Calvert County, Maryland. Enoch COOMBES sits on a jury.

16 Sep 1669 (Calvert Co MD) ENOCH COOMES witnessed the will of Quaker Leader Richard PRESTON.

Enoch Coombes patented Largoe, which lyeth on the north side of southwest branch of the Patuxent River, before it came into possession of Alexander Beall. Enoch had a daughter named Elizabeth Coombes. Her godmother was Joane, Lawson, Reade, Mounten, Tyler, Beall, wife of John Beall, immigrant of 1670. Joane left Elizabeth a legacy in her will of 1675. +alexander+beall&db=online&areas=10&head=online&booknum=&category=&words=c oombes&first=alexander&last=beall&cmd=context&id=37c22ffa24#hit1

17 Feb 1700/01 (St. Mary’s Co MD 20:216) Inventory. Henry BIGGS. Feb 17, 1700. Appraisers: Robert CLARKE, Enoch COMES. List of debts: Daniel LAWRENCE, Steven BEMBERRIGG, Richard RIGALL, Jr. (Abstracts of the Inventories And Accounts of the Prerogative Court of Maryland 1699-1704 Volume 6, V. L. Skinner, Jr.)

02 Jun 1701 (St. Mary’s Co MD 20:207 #6806) Estate Accounts. Henry BIGGS. £15.10.0. Recieved from Daniel LAWRENCE, Steven BOMBRIGG, Richard RIDGELL, Jr. Payments to: Ethelred TAYLOR (administrator of John WRIGHT), Robert CLARKE, Enoch COOMES, Henry HENNINGTON, Arthur YOUNG paid to BROWNE & EMES, Robert COOMES, Elias HENNINGTON & Mary BIGGS, Mr. Thomas HATTON. (Abstracts of the Inventories And Accounts of the Prerogative Court of Maryland 1699-1704 Volume 6, V. L. Skinner, Jr.)

Robert CLARKE married Sarah COMBS, d/o Abraham COMBS of Old Rappahannock Co VA & St. Mary’s Co MD. It is not yet known which Enoch COMBS the above is (I or II?), nor whom Robert COMBS might have been (this is one of only two Robert COMBS records found in early Maryland and for several generations thereafter… see 1706 St. Mary’s), but see Middlesex County, Virginia for a 1698 Robert COOMES where also is found a Robert and Sarah CLARK.
Contributed by: James Hughes

URL title: Combs &c. Families of Calvert County, Maryland
Will of Richard PRESTON of Patuxent, MD., dated 2 Dec. 1699 [nb: 1669]. To my son James PRESTON, if he is alive and returns from England to Md., the use of my plantation in Patuxent during his lifetime until such time as my grandchild Samuel PRESTON comes of age. In the meantime my daughter-in-law Margaret PRESTON is to be provided for if she decides to give him maintenance. My said son James, on the same conditions, is to have my patent for 200 acres called the Neglect and the island upon the Eastern Shore called Barren Island. My land in Great Choptank called Herne lately purchased of Walter SMITH as per patent for 600 acres to my two daughters Rebeckah and Sarah PRESTON during [t]heir lifetimes, then to my son James, but if all should die, then to my kinsmen and John DASSAY. I have a convenant with William TICK, a Dutchman living in Little Choptank, relating to the delivery of cattle by us in partnership and, when this convenant expires, the said Raphe DASSAY is to have all my cattle remaining. My friend and o’seer Edward NORMAN is to be paid his full wages and at the end of his service 585 lbs of tobasso. Thomas BROCKSON is to be paid his full wages and given 1,200 lbs of tobacco and a cow. William PURNELL is to be given a cow, etc. and to be made free on 20 Oct. next. The said John DASSAY is to have goods to the value of £20 from my house or from the goods being sent from England this year. I leave £20 to George HARRIS to be paid in goods if he comes from England this year and half of the debts due to me in tobacco according to the promise I made him when he went with my son James to England. To my grandchildren William and James BERRY 5,000 lbs of tobacco and to my grandchild Rebeckah BERRY some plate which is to come from England. To my kinsman James DASSAY 4,000 lbs of tobacco. To my said son James half the money I have sent for by James CONEWAY. To Thomas PRESTON upon the Clifts I give the tobacco he owes me. To Isaac HUNT I give goods to the value of £5. To William HARPER I give what is due to him by my Bill. The residue of my estate to my said three children. Execs: My friends William BERRY, Peter SHARPE, John TAYLOR of Kent and John MEERES upon the Clifts. Wits: Enoch COOMBES, George DENLINE, Thomas PEALE and William JONES. AWW 20 Aug. 1670 to the son James PRESTON during the absence of the named execs. (Prob 11/333/101).

Richard PRESTON was a leading Quaker … Enoch COOMES above has not been identified, but may be the same who came to Maryland ca 1663 w/wife Barbary [Barbara] & son, Enoch COMBS, Jr. who may have been same (or father of) the Enoch who was later in Prince George’s County. (Research in Progress) Richard PRESTON’S daughter, Rebecca, m 23 Oct 1679 in Talbot County Quaker Lovelace GORSUCH, earlier of Lancaster County, Virginia, s/o John & Anne GORSUCH Lovelace of Hertsfordshire, England, and brother of Richard GORSUCH whose children were named in the 1676 Talbot County, Maryland will of an Edward ROE who was not the same who was also earlier of Lancaster, and whose two daughters married William & John COMBS. Both William FORD, h/o Sarah (Richard1) PRESTON, and Lovelace GORSUCH later removed to Dorchester County, MD, where Lovelace was living when he m 2nd on on 11 Jun 1696, Hannah WALLEY, ” late of Pennsylvania, Spinster,” at the Tuckahoe (Quaker) Meeting, in Talbot County, Maryland!
(Virginia Families…, Gorsuch-Lovelace Family).

Marriage 1 Barba ra MNU Combs b: BEF 1642 in Lancaster County, Virginia

  • Married: ABT 1658 in Old Rappahanock County, Virginia


  1. Enoch Combs b: ABT 1658 in Lancaster County, Virginia
  2. Eliza beth Combs b: BEF 1661 in Calvert County, Maryland
  3. Georg e Combs b: BEF 1667
  4. Willi am Combs b: 1672 in St. Mary’s County, Maryland.(7

According to Colonial families of the United States descended from the immigrants who arrived before 1700 for Alexander Beall, 1649-1744. Immigrant:

Enoch Coombs patented Largoe, which lyeth on the north side of of southwest branch of the Patuxent River, before it came into possession of Alexander Beall. Enoch had a daughter named Elizabeth Coombs. Her godmother was Joane, Lawson, Reade, Mounten, Tyler, Beall, wife of John Beall, immigrant of 1670. Joane left Elizabeth a legacy in her will of 1675…

Alexander Beall m. Elizabeth Coombs. She was dr. of Enoch Coombs of P. G. Co., patentee of land called Largoe…

Elizabeth Coombe’s sister Barbara, b. 1704, d. 1799, m. James Magruder, b. 1699, son of Col. Samuel Magruder.(8)

The following are the children of Alexander Beall and Elizabeth Coombs, as identified in his will: (9)

  1. William Beall (1683-1756). William was born about 1683 in Anne Arundel or Calvert County, Maryland, and he died March 30, 1756. His wife was Elizabeth Magruder (1689-1764)–daughter of Col. Samuel Magruder (1654-1711) and Sarah Beall (1669-1734) [daughter of Col. Ninian Beall (1625-1717) and Ruth Polly Moore (1652-1707)]–and widow of Ninian Beall, Jr. (1674-1710) [son of Col. Ninian Beall (1625-1717) and Ruth Polly Moore (1652-1707)]. I will save the Magruder-Col. Ninian Beall families for Parts Five and Six. However, the children of Elizabeth Magruder and Ninian Beall, Jr. were: (a) Mary Beall (1704-1705); (b) James Beall (1704-1780); (c) Samuel Beall, Sr. (1706-1780)–whose records are often confused with a cousin: Col. Samuel Magruder Beall (1713-1778)–Howards fifth great grandfather; (d) Ninian Beall (b. 1710) The children of William Beall and Elizabeth Magruder Beall were: (a) Capt. Alexander Beall (1712-1759); (b) Nathaniel Beall (1715-1757); (c) Margaret Beall (1722-1797); (d) Richard Beall (1722-1794); (e) Elizabeth Beall (1728-1768).
  2. Ninian Beall (1686-1744). As can be imagined, this line has been terribly confused. Ninian was born in Upper Marlboro in 1686, and he died January 6, 1744 in Frederick County, Maryland.  Ninian’s wife’s name was Ruth, who died in 1749. Her maiden name is unknown, however some people have suggested Hambleton. I have one son for them: William Beall (1710-1787), who married Sarah Magruder (1713-1734). She was the daughter of Ninian Magruder (1686-1751) and Elizabeth Brewer (1690-1751), and the granddaughter of Col. Samuel Magruder and Sarah Beall. Ninian and Ruth were the ancestors of some of the Beall families who settled in Southwest Pennsylvania. I discussed those families in Part Three. I need to do more research on this line–which will result in a future updated article.
  3. Ruth Beall (1686-1719). Ruth was born in 1686 in Upper Marlboro, and she died in 1719 in Upper Marlboro. If those dates of birth are correct, Ruth and her brother Ninian would have been twins. Her husband was John Jackson (1685-1761). I found one daughter for them: Margaret Beall Jackson (1711-1801). Margaret married Capt. Samuel Brewer Magruder (1708-1786)–the son of Ninian Magruder and Elizabeth Brewer, who are mentioned in the previous section–and the grandson of Col. Samuel Magruder and Sarah Beall. The daughter of Capt. Samuel Brewer Magruder and Margaret Beall Jackson–Elizabeth Jackson Magruder (1730-1812)–married William Offutt (1729-1786).
  4. John Beall (1688-1742). John is Howard’s sixth great-grandfather. I will cover him in Part Five
  5. James Beall (1690-1733). See below

Alexander’s will definitely identifies two sons who died before he made out his will: James and John. They both married and had families. However, people have confused these two individuals and the records are jumbled. I will save John for Part Five and will discuss James here.

Many people believe that James and John were the same person and that his name was James John Beall or John James Beall. They assign the same year of birth (1688) and the same date of death (May 18, 1744). Consequently, I could find nothing about James, until stumbling across an article about Alexander Beall’s second wife. Please note the following section from that article:

James, b. 1690, (FMMB:D, 1690) d. 1733, and deceased at father’s death 1744; m. Mary Edmonston, dau of B-NIN-7/1678 Jane Beall and her husband Col. Archibald Edmonston. Caution–This line follows events and children assigned by Heterick. See also B-ALEX-34 for James Beall of James, following Doliante. FMMB and Beall News, p. 12 confuse children of James Beall of Alexander and James Beall of James, with a James and Alexander only found under James of Alexander, and most of James of Alexander’s children placed under James of James. (+) (10)

Jane Beall mentioned in this account was a daughter of Col. Ninian Beall and Ruth Polly Moore!

A summary of James Beall’s Will follows– (The summary identifies his children):


Name: James Beall Sr.
Will Date: 3 May 1733
Will Place: Prince George’s, Maryland, British America
Probate Date: 29 Nov 1733
Death Year: Abt 1733
Text: Beall, James, Sr.,Prince George’s Co.,3rd May, 1733; 29th Nov., 1733. To dau. Jane and hrs., 240 A. of “Labyrinth,” to be laid out as near as may be to dwelling plantation of Samuel Beall. To James Edmondston and hrs., ½ of “Brother’s Content,” to be laid out as near as may be to new dwelling plantation of Michael Cranen. To wife Mary, extx., residue of estate during life for maintenance and education of child.; at her decease to be divided between son Alex., dau. Rachel, sons Robert, Archibald, James, Allen and Thomas, and young. dau. —–, and their hrs.; should any of child. die during minority, their estates to be divided amongst their brothers. Testator empowers James Edmonston and William Beall, Sr., to resurvey lands on or near “Rock Creek,” viz.: “Labyrinth,” “Prevention” and “Batchelor’s Forest” and to make such alterations and additions in sd. land as they shall think proper. Test: Jane Edmonston, Arch. Edmonston, Jr., Ann Simson. 20. 822.
Original Source Name: Land Office
Original Source Location: Annapolis, Maryland, USA
Original Source Series: Will books
Original Source Book: 20
Original Source Page: 822 (11)

The listing of children by dates include: (a) Jane Beall (1715-1794); (b) Rachel Beall (1718-1783); (c) Samuel Beall (1721-1794); (d) Alexander Beall (1722-1776); (e) Archibald Beall (1725-1791); (f) James Beall (1728-1804); (g) Allen Beall (1728-1776); (h) Thomas Beall (1730-1783); (I) Charity Beall (1733-1781). Samuel is the only one I can’t identify in the will. I will leave him in this list for now. Charity is the young daughter, whose name is not given.


Elizabeth Buckerfield-Bates was the daughter of Henry Buckerfield (1658-1689) and Elizabeth Parker (1660-1735). Elizabeth’s first husband was William Bates (1648-1708). Their children were: (a) Elizabeth Bates (b. 1704); and  (b) Mary Bates-Beall (1705-1723). Her marriage to William Bates took place around 1700. Most people believe she married Alexander Beall after her husband’s death in 1708. More than likely, it was around 1711. The FoxCemetery article notes:

Elizabeth, daughter of Elizabeth Parker and William Buckerfield, was probably b. England ca 1685 and d in P. G. Co by 1743 (Russell. She m. (1) in England betw 1698 and 1707 William Bates, and had daughter Mary ca 1705. Mary Bates in turn ca 1732 married Lingan Willson, b. PG Co 1702 to Josiah Willson of James and Martha Lingan (Russell/Maternal Ancestry). This marriage may also have produced daughter Elizabeth, who married George Scott and is mentioned in grandmother Elizabeth’s 1734 will. William Bates died, probably in England leaving his widow Elizabeth Buckerfield Bates free to m. (2) Alexander Beall “after about 1708 when the Buckerfield family moved to Maryland.” (Russell). Since she was not mentioned in will, she must have predeceased Alexander.(12)


According to Find-a-Grave records, Alexander Beall, his wife Elizabeth [Note: undoubtedly both Elizabeth Coombs and Elizabeth Buckerfield-Bates],  Alexander’s son, John Beall and John’s wife Verlinda Magruder (Howard’s ancestors), John and Verlinda’s son, Josiah Beall and Josiah’s wife “M”,  are all buried in the old graveyard at Zion (Episcopal) Church Cemetery in Urbana, Frederick County, Maryland. The property was originally called “The Old Beall Farm”, so they were buried in the original family cemetery. The Frederick County Landmarks Foundation website provides the history of the Zion churchyard:

Consecrated in 1802 by the first American Episcopal bishop, the Rev. Thomas John Claggett, Zion was the first church—indeed, the first nonresidential building–in the Sugarloaf Mountain region of southern Frederick County, three decades before the village of Urbana was founded and named by Charles Johnson. For 160 years it was the center of community life in Urbana.
It is the resting place of many leading citizens of Frederick County, including veterans of the American Revolution, War of 1812 and Civil War. Among the graves are two Virginian Confederate cavalry officers, one killed at the Battle of Monocacy and the other in a skirmish following it in Urbana in 1864. Zion was also used as a hospital during the Civil War. One of its early ministers founded a prominent girls’ boarding school housed in the nearby mansion Landon.

Among the notables buried at Zion are the founder of Urbana, Charles Johnson, and his father, Roger Johnson, a noted Maryland industrialist of the Federal period and brother of Gov. Thomas Johnson. Also buried there are members of such early families as Worthington, Beall, Murdoch, Delaplaine and Simmons.(13)

Josiah Beall’s Find-a-Grave Memorial notes the following:

According to the Abstract of Graves of Revolutionary Patriots
Josiah Beall, son of John and Verlinda Magruder Beall, is buried in the “Boxwood Lodge Cemetery” located on the old Elisha Beall home called Boxwood Lodge. However, the cemetery apparently has gone to ruin and the new name is called Old Urbana Cemetery which is next to an old Episcopal Church ruin which is only partly standing.
Josiah Beall died before the revolutionary war began, but his claim to fame was that he was one of the 12 justices of Frederick County, MD who repudiated the Stamp Tax, the first judicial official nullification of English rule in 1765. He was very active in the community as a planter, sheriff, constable, Justice and Coroner.(14)

To Be Continued in Part Five


(1) Alexander Beall Find-a-Grave Memorial No. 137013278. Recorded added 09 Oct 2014 by Candee. Website. Date Accessed: 07 Jan 2016. Available online at

(2) Scotland Select Births and Baptisms about Alexander Bell, 1564-1950., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 07 Jan 2016. Available online at

(3) US and Canada, Passenger and Immigration Lists Index (1500s-1900s) about Alexander Beall., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 07 Jan 2016. Available online at

(4) US and Canada, Passenger and Immigration Lists Index (1500s-1900s) about Alexander Beall., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 07 Jan 2016. Available online at

(5) “Biography”–originally submitted to Ancestry by ShellyLDavis 19 Mar 2011., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 07-Jan 2016. Available online at

(6) “Biography: Notes from Walter Beall of Winston-Salem, North Carolina.”, Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 07 Jan 2016. Available online at

(7) Enoch Coombs Biography, submitted by James Hughes, date unknown., Provo, Utah. Date accessed: 12 Jan 2016. Available online at

(8) Colonial families of the United States descended from the immigrants who arrived before 1700 for  Alexander Beall, 1649-1744. Immigrant,, Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 12 Jan 2016. Available online at

(9) Last Will and Testament of Alexander Beall (d. 1744)., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 12 Jan 2016. Available online at

(10) Elizabeth Parker and Her daughter, Elizabeth Buckerfield, posted by FoxCemeteryAssociation 04 Aug 2013,, Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 12 Jan 2016. Available online at

(11) Summary of James Beall’s Will (1733)., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 12 Jan 2016. Available online at

(12) Elizabeth Parker and her daughter, Elizabeth Buckerfield, posted by FoxCemeteryAssociation 04 Aug 2013,, Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 12 Jan 2016. Available online at

(13) Preservation Projects: Zion Church. Frederick County Landmarks Foundation Website. Copyright, 2007: Frederick County Landmarks Foundation. Date Accessed: 14 Jan 2016. Available online at

(14) Josiah Beall Find-a-Grave Memorial No. 118749502. Website. Created by Candee 15 Oct 2013. Date Accessed: 14 Jan 2016. Available online at


















The Ringing of the Bells–Part Three: Alexander Bell (1625-1655)


Bell Border Tartan

Bell Border Tartan


Bell Border Tartan–Dress Blues


Alexander Bell is believed to have been born during the early 1600’s in Fife County, Scotland. Although the identity of Alexander’s parents has yet to be determined beyond doubt, there are a number of researchers, including the author, who believe that his father was named William. There was a “William Bell, elder, weaver” who witnessed the transfer of a parcel of land (Sasine) that had been bequeathed to Alexander from his cousin Christian Pattersone. This same William Bell, elder, also witnessed the christening of Alexander’s son, William, on 22 August 1647. It is further believed that Alexander had a brother, also named William, and that it was this “William Bell, younger, weaver” who married Christian Traill in the parish church at St. Andrew’s in Fife County, Scotland on 5 December 1639 . No additional information has been found concerning these Williams, however. Alexander, who was also a brabener (linen weaver) by trade, was later married to a woman named Margaret Ramsay in the parish church at St. Andrew’s in Fife County on 21 May 1646. With the exception of their son, Robert Bell, the following children were identified through the christening records of St. Andrew’s Church as being Alexander and Margaret’s. Because no birth or christening records have been found for Robert Bell, his actual relationship to this family is still being debated by some. However, since this family is not found in the St. Andrew’s Church records after the christening of their son, Andrew, I cannot help but think that Alexander and Margaret must have moved to another Parish, where they could very well have had additional children. Unfortunately, where Alexander and Margaret may have moved to after Andrew’s christening has simply not been determined yet. In light of the fact that Alexander’s son, also named Alexander, specifically referred to a brother named Robert in his will, I have included this Robert as also being a son of Alexander and Margaret Bell.(1)


Name confusion is a major problem in studying the Beall line. The problem makes it difficult parking these people in the right space, but I will give it a try.

Howard’s eighth great-grandfather, Alexander Beall, was born in St. Andrews, Fife, Scotland, and he died January 10, 1655 in St. Andrews. A weaver by trade, Alexander, was the son of William Bell (1599-1633) and his first wife Christen Gourlay (1605-1639), and the grandson of William Bell (1535-1600) and Margaret Patterson (1534-1600). Alexander Bell’s father William Bell (1599-1633) was a brother of Alexander Bell (1565-1612). This Alexander Bell was the father of Dr. James Beall (1603-1646), and the grandfather of Col. Ninian Beall (1625-1717). That would place Alexander Bell and the Ninian Beall in a cousin relationship.

There is another connection I need to mention here–this one involving Alexander Bell’s wife: Margaret Ramsey (1625-1655).  There were two Margaret Ramseys:  Margaret Ramsey (1625-1655)–wife of Alexander Bell (1625-1655),–the subject under discussion here– and Margaret Ramsey (1565-1605)–wife of Alexander Bell (1565-1612), the grandparents of Colonel Ninian Beall. In other words, there were two Alexander Bells and two Margaret Ramseys. The Margaret Ramseys are often referred to as Margaret Ramsey, Sr. and Margaret Ramsey, Jr. I will refer to them in this fashion here.

Margaret Ramsey, Sr. was born in 1569 in Largo, Fife, Scotland, and she died in Largo in 1605. She appears as the daughter of John Pearce Ramsey (1530-1620) and his wife Sarah (1530-1619). In 1593, she married Alexander Bell (1565-1612) in Largo, Fife, Scotland. Some people link the older Ramseys to Margaret Ramsey, Jr. However, the age difference does not compute. I have not heard of centenarians giving birth to children outside Abraham and Sarah in the Bible! Margaret, Sr.’s Find-a-Grave Memorial follows:

Birth: 1569
Fife, Scotland
Death: 1605
Fife, Scotland

Margaret Ramsey born in 1569 in Largo, Fifeshire, Scotland. Margaret was the daughter of John Pearce Ramsey (1530-1620) and unknown mother.Margaret married Alexander Beall (1565-1612)in Largo, Fife, Scotland in 1593. He was the son of William Beall (1535-1600) and Margaret (Patterson) Beall (1534-1600).Alexander and Margaret Beall were the parents of the following known children: Alexander Beall, James Beall, Andrew Beall, William Beall, Robert Beall, Ruth Beall, John Beall and Ninian Beall.Margaret (Ramsey) died in 1605 in Largo, Fifeshire, Scotland. She was 36 years old. Burial information unknown at this time.Family links:
Alexander Beall (1565 – 1612)*Children:
James Beall (1603 – 1646)**Calculated relationship
Created by: Stella
Record added: Jul 03, 2014
Find A Grave Memorial# 132260765(2)

Margaret Ramsey, Jr. was born in 1625 in St. Andrews, Fife, Scotland, and she died in February 1655 in East Kilbride, Lanarkshire, Scotland. Her parents are unknown, although some people believe her father’s name was John Ramsey.  On May 21, 1646, she married Alexander Bell (1625-1655) in Saint Andrews and Saint Leonards, Fife, Scotland.(3)  The following is a synopsis of my research about the Alexander Bell family:

Copied from freepages:



1. Alexander Bell.

Alexander Bell is believed to have been born during the early 1600’s in Fife County, Scotland.  Although the identity of Alexander’s parents has yet to be determined beyond doubt, there are a number of researchers who believe that his father was named William.  It is further believed that Alexander had a brother, also named William, and that it was this William who married Christian Traill in the parish church at St. Andrew’s in Fife County on 5 December 1639.  No additional information has been found concerning this William, however.

Alexander, who was a brabener (linen weaver) by trade, was later married on 21 May 1646 in the parish church at St. Andrew’s in Fife County to a woman named Margaret Ramsay.  With the exception of Robert, the following children were identified through the christening records of St. Andrew’s Church as being Alexander and Margaret’s.  Because no birth or christening records have been found for Robert, his actual relationship to this family is still being debated.  It is my belief, however, that Alexander and Margaret could have had additional children that were christened in another parish, and that they simply have not been located yet.  In light of the fact that Alexander’s son, Alexander, specifically referred to a brother named Robert in his will, I have included this Robert as also being a son of Alexander and Margaret Bell.

Known and probable issue:  (Surname Bell)

2. William
b. in Fife Co., Scot.
chr. 22 August 1647 at St. Andrew’s Church, Fife Co., Scot.

3. Alexander
b. in Fife Co., Scot.
chr. 11 October 1649 at St. Andrew’s Church, Fife Co., Scot.
m. (1) unknown.
m. (2) Elizabeth (Buckerfield) Bates in MD.   (widow of William Bates)
d. 1744 in Prince George’s Co., MD.

4. James
b. in Fife Co., Scot.
chr. 5 February 1652 at St. Andrew’s Church, Fife Co., Scot.
m. 1693 to Sarah Pearce in MD.
d. 1725 in Prince George’s Co., MD.

5. Andrew
b. in Fife Co., Scot.
chr. 28 March 1655 at St. Andrew’s Church, Fife Co., Scot.
m. (remained single)
d. 1742 in Prince George’s Co., MD.

6. Robert
b. in Scot.
m. Margery (      ).
d. ca. 1754/55 in Prince George’s Co., MD.(4)

The children of Alexander Bell and Margaret Ramsey follow:

  1. William Bell (1647-unknown). William was christened in Saint Andrew’s Church, Fifeshire, Scotland August 22, 1647 (5)  A biography of William Bell by Jack E. Powell notes:

William Bell, the son of Alexander Bell and Margaret Ramsay, was born in Fife
County, Scotland. He was subsequently christened in the parish church at St.
Andrew’s in Fife County on 22 August 1647. At the present time, it is not known
whether or not William emigrated to Maryland with his brothers or remained in

NOTE: According to Fielder M. M. Beall in his book “Colonial Families of the United
States Descended From the Immigrants Bell, Beal, Bale, Beale, Beall,” William Bell
was married in Maryland in about 1695 to Elizabeth Stallings, the daughter of
Richard Stallings (also written Stallinges). It is also stated by Fielder Beall that this
William died in Calvert County, Maryland in 1731, and that his will was submitted for
probate before the Calvert County Court on 10 April 1731. This William’s surname
was not listed as Bell or Beall, however, but as Deal (Deale).  
The wills of this William’s father-in-law and brother-in-law, as well as information
presented in the Stallings family genealogy, consistently refer to this person as
William Deal, Deale, or Dealt. This surname also appears to have been used by this
William’s descendants as well. As a consequence, I believe Fielder Beall’s
assessment of this William is inaccurate, and that this individual is not the son of
Alexander Bell and Margaret Ramsay.(6)

Beyond his christening date, I have found no additional information for William Bell.

2. Alexander Bell (Beall) (1649-1744). Howard’s seventh great grandfather. He will be discussed in Part Four.

3. James William Bell (Beall) (1652-1725). James was christened in St. Andrew’s Church, Fifeshire Scotland February 5, 1652.(7)  The full name James William Bell appears on  his  christening record. He could have born the middle name William if his older brother died as an infant or toddler, hence the reason why I could find no additional information about William Bell. James arrived in Maryland in 1668.(8)  A summary concerning his life from Rootsweb follows:


  • ID: I476
  • Name: James Immigrant BEALL
  • Sex: M
  • Birth: 1652
  • Christening: 5 FEB 1652
  • Death: BEF NOV 1725 in Prince George’s Co., MD
  • HIST: See BGN:123, 442 1
  • Note: 2 3 2 4 5

    Note: B-ALEX-3 James Beall, baptized St. Andrew’s Ch, Fifeshire, February 5, 1652, of Prince Georges County, Planter; Immigrant, of Alexander of Scotland [G1621], d. 1725. Said to have immigrated 1668 (AALO 15:340; FMMB:148, however this citation may refer to a James Bill). Doliante (14) believes came in 1690 with Rev. Nathaniel Taylor and a congregation of Scots from Fifeshire. Land Transactions. Lord Baltimore 1685 ceased giving land grants to immigrants, and James Beall never received a land grant. No references to James Beall or other brothers prior to 1695. First property was 562 a. Rover’s Content, purchased from Col Ninian Beall in 1698. 7 Sep 1711 Lone Head surveyed for James Bill; patended Apr 10, 1715, 782 acres. (Rent Rolls Book PGC #1:118; FMMB:149). James Pearre, probably from Aberdeenshire, lived next to Lone Head, patented by James Beall, the Immigrant and willed to his son. June 4, 1714, Good Luck, located on east side of Cabbin John Branch, surveyed for James Beall; patended Apr 20, 1719 (Rent Roll Book, PGC #1:333; FMMB:149) Sep 16, 1715, 225 acres Drumaldry surveyed for James Beall in now Montgomery Co. (FMMB:149) “On the Northwest Branch and still north of [Dumaldry] James Beall was granted Lay Hill 17 Aug 1716 containing 1298 acres.” The present suburb of Layhill in Montgomery County, halfway between Rockville and Burtonsville, is located within this tract. Marriage. In 1693 m. Sarah Pearce, dau of John and Sarah Pearce. Church Affairs. Nov 25 1704, Col Ninian Beall gave 1/2 acre for church “& made a # of kinsman trustees”, including James Beall. (PGLO C:116b-116c). Aug 19 1707 listed as vestryman for Broad Creek P. E. Church, Piscataway Parish [Rock Creek Vestry Records, ff 22; FMMB:149]. 1713 elder in Presbyterian Church, Upper Marlboro. (Briggs’ American Presbyterian, 1884; FMMB:149) Will, 1723. Left yearly sum of money to Rev. Hugh Conn, Presbyterian. At death, James’ sons Robert and Joseph to inherit Layhill, divided eqully between them. Will 21 Nov 1723-10 Jul 1725. If named in will, underlined (Heterick, II:1). If cited by Doliante, (*) asterisk. Brother Alexander, son John, and cousins William (B-COUSIN-1/G1665) and James, (B-COUSIN-2/G1667) executors. (Heterick II:1). Several of the children appeared in the PG Orphans Court in the period 1723-1735 (Beall News:123–dates marked OC).
    1. *Margaret/Mary, b. 1694 (+)
    2. *John, Jr, b. G1700 (+)
    3. *Nathaniel, b. G1709 (OC); 1699 (FMMB:154; Beall News:13); (Doliante: after 1705) Aug 1725 “Of a competent age as tis said” (b. NET 1708) choose as guardian William Beall Sr of PGC (B-ALEX-1/G1647 or B-ALEX-21/G1683 William Beall Sr of Alexander) (PGOC L:486; Beall News:123) (+)
    4. *James, Jr, b. Jan 1711 (OC); 1710 (FMMB); 1708 (Doliante) Caution–This line follows events and children assigned by Doliante. Events and children assigned by FMMB and Beall News, p. 12 (James Beall, b. 1698) are found under James B-ALEX-24/1690 of Alexander, Immigrant. Events and children assigned by Heterick are found under James B-JAMESBEALL, b. G1720 (+)
    5. *Sarah, April 1713 b. 1710-12 (Doliante) or 1703 (Beall News,p. 12, E) (+B-ALEX-35/1710) At age 13 next April selects mother Sarah Beall as guardian, (PGOC Nov 1725 L:509,510, Beall News:123)
    6. *Robert, b. 29 Nov 1717 (OC) (1716-1740, FMMB) Age 10 in 1726 (Doliante, 19) or 1705 (Beall News,13, F) To inherit Layhill (+B-ALEX-36/1716) At age 19 years by 29th day of next November, Selects Thomas Odell of Prince Georges County, Planter, as guardian (PGOC Mar 1735 V:350, Beall News:123)
    7. *Joseph, b. 1719 (OC) 1720 (FMMB). Age 6 in 1726 (Doliante:19) or 1708 (Beall News,13, G) To inherit Layhill. Aug 1735 aged 16 “or thereabouts”, selects Thomas Odell as guardian. (PGOC V:542, Beall News:123) (+B-ALEX-37/1720)
    8. *Zephaniah, b. 1723 (+) Age 3 in 1726 (Doliante, 19) or 1720 (Beall News,13, H) (+)

    1725 Beall, James P. G. 18, 394

    BEALL, James 1652 PEARCE, Sarah 1680 911.000 DB CTF 1 1695
    BEALL, James 1652 RIDGELY, Sarah 1341.000 DB CTF 1 1722


    (N), m. by 16 March 1700, Sarah, eld. dau. of Thomas
    Sprigg. Her dau. Sarah m. James Bell (Beall?) (PGLR A:362).

    James Beall, Sr., 1652-1725, Immigrant
    JUDGE JOSEPH BEALL, 1708-1798.
    GENERAL REZIN BEALL, 1769-1843.
    JUDGE WM. MURDOCK BEALL, 1742-1823.

    James Bell, b 1652, son of Alexander Bell and his wife, Margaret Ramsay Bell, baptized in St. Andrew’s Church, Fife County, Scotland, Feb. 5, 1652.
    James Bell arrived in the Province of Maryland 1668. Liber 15, folio 340, Land Office, Annapolis.
    James Beall, Sr., b 1652, d 1725, of Rovers’ Content and Fife. Will probated Feb. 10, 1725, P. G. Co., Liber 1, folio 140, 1725.
    Mentions brother Alexander and son-in-law Thomas O’Dell.
    James Beall, testator to will of John Emmert, Charles County, made April 13, 1695. Md. Cal. Wills, Vol. II, folio 152.
    Ninian Beall and his wife, Ruth Moore Beall, deeded to James Beall, Jan. 23, 1698, a tract of land called Rovers’ Content, 562 acres, in P. G. Co.
    James Beall made trustee of a Presbyterian Church. Land in Upper Marlboro, P. G. Co., deeded by Colonel Ninian Beall, Nov. 25, 1704, “for ye propagation of ye Gospel of Jesus Christ.”
    James Beall vestryman in Broad Creek P. E. Church, Piscataway Parish, Aug. 19, 1707. See records Rock Creek Church Parish, folio 22.
    James Beall elder in the Presbyterian Church, Upper Marlboro, 1713. Briggs’ American Presbyterian, 1884.
    James Beall testator in will of Steven Johnson of P. G. Co., made Dec. 25, 1718. Md. Col. Wills, Vol. IV, folio 296.
    Land called Lone Head was surveyed for James Beall, Feb. 7, 1711. Patented April 10, 1715, 782 acres. See Rent Rolls Book, P. G. Co., No. 1, folio 118.
    Land called Drumaldry was surveyed for James Beall, Sept. 16, 1715, 225 acres. It was in now Montgomery County.
    Land called Ley Hill surveyed for James Beall, Aug. 17, 1716, 1,298 acres, located in N. W. Branch, north of Drumaldry, in now Montgomery Co.
    Land called Good Luck, located on east side of Cabbin John Branch, surveyed for James Beall, June 4, 1714. Patented April 20, 1719. See Rent Roll Book, P. G. Co., No. 1, folio 333.
    James Beall m Sarah Pearce, 1693, dr of John and Sarah Pearce. See deed, Liber A, folio 361, P. G. Co., 1701. After the death of James Beall, 1725, his wife Sarah m Dr. John Haswell of P. G. Co. She survived Dr. John. In her will, probated Nov. 28, 1761, W. B. No. 1, folio 535, P. G. Co., she leaves bequests to her Beall children, and a calf to “my granddaughter, Charity, dr of my son James.” This was the Charity Beall who m Haswell Magruder, son of Samuel, Jr. She also mentions her dr, Sarah O’Dell, and her great-grandchildren, James Williams and Sarah Williams.
    James and Sarah had issue:
    A, Mary; B, John; C, James; D, Nathaniel; E, Sarah; F, Robert; G, Joseph; H, Zepheniah.
    A. Mary Beall, b 1694, d before 1723; m Thomas O’Dell, b 1692, son of Thomas O’Dell, Sr., and his wife, Sarah Ridgley Brewer. Issue unknown.
    Beall, James, planter,Prince George’s Co.,21st Nov., 1723;
    10th July, 1725.
    To eldest son John, “Rover’s Content,” “Fiffe,” pt. of “Good Luck,” on e. side of Cabbin Br., and “Drumaldree.”
    To son Nathaniel, “Easy Purchase” and “Addition to Easy Purchase.”
    To son James, pt. of “Good Luck,” on w. side of Cabbin Br., and “Lone head.”
    To sons Robert and Joseph, “Lay Hill” equally.
    To son Zepheniah, pt. of “Allisons Park” and “Cooper.”
    To dau. Sarah, pt. of “Beall’s Mannour” and £30 to be pd. her by son-in-law Thomas Odell on day of marriage or on demand.
    To Rev. Mr. Hugh Conn and to the ministers that shall succeed him, £10 yearly.
    To wife Sarah, dwelling plantation — and personalty during life; residue of personal estate to children equally.
    Exs.: Bro. Alexander, son John, cousin William and John Beall, Sr.
    Test: Thos. Applegate, Joseph Beach, Mary Boyce. 18, 394.

  • Change Date: 15 NOV 2001Father: Alexander BEALL b: ABT 1621 in St. Andrews, Fifeshire, Scotland
    Mother: Margaret RAMSAY b: in St. Andrews, Fifeshire, ScotlandMarriage 1 Sarah PEARCE

    • Married: ABT 1692


    1. Mary Or Margaret BEALL b: 1694
    2. Nathaniel BEALL b: abt 1699/1709 in Prince George’s Co., MD
    3. John BEALL b: ABT 1700 in Prince George’s Co., MD
    4. James Jr. BEALL b: JAN 1711 in Prince George’s Co., MD
    5. Sarah BEALL b: APR 1713 in Prince George’s Co., MD
    6. Robert BEALL b: 29 NOV 1717 in Prince George’s Co., MD
    7. Joseph BEALL b: 1719 in Prince George’s Co., MD
    8. Zephaniah BEALL b: 1722/1723 in Prince George’s Co., NOTE: This Zephaniah Beall died young.]
    1. Sources:
    2. Type: Book
      Periodical: Beall Genealogical News
      Publication: Robert Clair Beall
    3. Text: Jackson H. Day’s Beall Database, 200+ pgs., Received Dec. 1996, Jackson H. Day, 11892 Blue February Way, Columbia, MD 21044, Jackson H. Day
      Among numerous others, Jack employs the following sources:
      Fielder M. M. Beall, Bell and Beall Families of Maryland, Maryland Room, Prince Georges County Library, Hyattsville, Md
      Elizabeth B. Heterick, Five Families Beall of Maryland (Montgomery County Historical Society)
      Gaius Marcus Brumbaugh, Maryland Records: Colonial, Revolutionary, County and Church from Original Sources, Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co, 1993
      Fielder Beall: Colonial Families of the US descended from the Immigrants Bell, etc.
      Genealogy of the Beall Families, located in Montg. Co. Hist. Soc; quoted by Barbara Collins
      Western Maryland Genealogy (journal)
      Maryland Genealogical Society Bulletin (journal)
      Alice Norris Parran, Register of Maryland’s Heraldic Families, Baltimore: H. G. Roebuck, 1935
      J. Thomas Scharf, History of Western Maryland, Philadelphia, 1882, repr. Baltimore, Regional Publishing Co., 1968.
      George Norbury Mackenzie, Beall & Edmonstone Colonial Families of America, Bk II
      Charles Ninian Edmonston, “Mary Edmonston” in My Own Edmonstons and a few others, ”
      Katherine Beall Adams, Maryland Heritage, A Family History
      Pioneers of Old Monocacy
      Millard Milburn Rice, This was the life: Excerpts from the Judgement Records of Frederick Co, MD 1748-1765, Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co, Inc, 1984
      Effie Gwynn Bowie, Across the Years in Prince George’s County. Richmond: Garrett & Massie, 1947
      Millard Milburn Rice, This was the Life: Excerpts from the Judgment Records of Frederick County, Maryland, 1748-1765, Redwood City, CA: Monocacy Book Co., 1979
      Heitman, F. B., Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army during the War of the Revolution April 1775 to December 1783. Washington, DC: W. H. Lowdermilk & Co, 1893
      F. Edward Wright, compiler, Marraiges and Deaths in the Newspapers of Frederick and Montgomery Counties, Maryland, 1820-1830, Westminster, Maryland:
      J. D. Warfield, The Founders of Anne Arundel and Howard Counties, Maryland, Baltmore: 1973, Regional Publishing Company
      Patriotic Maryland and the Maryland Society Sons of the American Revolution. Baltimore, 1930
      Charles Francis Stein, Jr, Origin and History of Howard County, Maryland. Baltimore, 1972
      Frederick C. Beall, Robert Beall (Bell): His Ancestors and Descendents
      Virgil D. White, Abstractor, Genealogical Abstracts of Revolutionary War Pension Files, Vol. I.
      Muster Rolls of Maryland Troops in the American Revolution, Genealogical Publishing Co, Baltimore, 1972
      Robert Barnes, Marriages & Deaths from the Maryland Gazette 1727-1839. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing House, 1973
      Helen W. Ridgley, Historic Graves of Maryland and the District of Columbia. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co, 1967. Originally published NY: The Grifton Press, 1908
      Maryland German Church Records, Historical Society of Carroll Co, Westminster, MD 1992
      F. S. Weiser, Frederick Maryland Lutheran Marriages and Burials 1743-1811, Washington, DC: National Genealogical Society, 1972
      Anderson, Grant James, Genealogy, in Part, of the Anderson-Owen-Beall Families, October 1909
    4. Text: Index of Maryland Colonial Wills, 1634-1777 In the Hall of Records Annapolis, MD, compiled by James M. Magruder, Jr., Baltimore, Genealogicical Publishing Company, 1967.
    5. Type: Web Site
      Author: Norris Farnell
      —————————————————————– ———–
      Last Name FARNELL
      First NORRIS
      Address1 4998 ORTEGA BLVD
      ST FL
      ZIP 32210
      Code CTF
      Date 11/23/1993
      File FARNELL
      Phone (904) 384-8769
    6. Type: Web Site
      Title: MD State Archives

[Note: Another Zephaniah Beall is of particular interest to me. Howard and I discovered him our first summer in Pennsylvania in 1992. In 1780-1782, this Zephaniah moved from Maryland to Western Pennsylvania with his family, and settled in Washington County. According to SAR Records:

He served as an ensign of Capt. Burgiss’s Company of Militia in the ??? District of Frederick County, Maryland. In 1780-2, he moved with his family to Washington County, Pennsylvania and in 1782 he served as a major in Col. Crawford’s Unfortunate Expedition against the Indians in Ohio. May 14, 1785, he received a warrant of land from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in Washington County, which was surveyed and patented to him March 19, 1788. This was a reward for his military service.(10)

Zephaniah Beall had two wives: Keziah Offutt (1735-1783) and Verlinda Ferguson (1766-1794). His children by his first wife were: (1) Reasin Beall (1769-1843); (2) Nancy Beall (b. 1771); (3) Zephaniah Beall (1773-1853); (4) Thomas Beall (b. 1775). Zephaniah Beall died July 1801 in Beallsville, Washington, Pennsylvania, a town that was named for him.

Elizabeth Ann Beall Grave, Beallsville, Washington, Pennsylvania. Photo taken Summer 1992

Elizabeth Ann Beall Grave, Beallsville, Washington, Pennsylvania. Photo taken Summer 1992.  Elizabeth was born May 1828, and she died February 7, 1835


We had been in Pennsylvania only a short time before Howard discovered Beallsville. He drove over there while I was in class one day, and he was caught in a terrible rainstorm. He ran around a cemetery looking for graves when the storm became so blinding, he was forced to return to Indiana, Pennsylvania (where we were staying), postponing his adventure for another time. I went with him on his return. We found two houses Zephaniah had built and owned: one, a stone house in the country, and the second, a log home in Beallsville. The log home was across the road from a cemetery where it was believed that Zephaniah and his family were buried. We were able to visit the cemetery. It was located on private property, but the owner allowed us to view what was left of it. He had moved all the tombstones inside the barn. The rest were mostly destroyed. We were able to see one stone belonging to an eight year old girl named Elizabeth Ann Beall (1828-1835). Elizabeth was the daughter of James Perry Beall (1796-1869) and his third wife, Minerva Jane Huff/Hough (1800-1875), the granddaughter of Colemore Beall (1760-1839) and Jeanne Doull Offutt (1770-1815), the great-granddaughter of Mordecai Beall (1742-1777) and Elizabeth Beall (1740-1786), the second great-granddaughter of William Beall (1710-1787) and Sarah Magruder (1713-1734), the third great-granddaughter of  Ninian Beall (1686-1743) and his wife Ruth (d. 1749), and the fourth great-granddaughter of Alexander Bell (Beall) (1649-1744) and Elizabeth Coombs (1650-1743). (Alexander and Elizabeth were Howard’s eighth great grandparents to be discussed in Part Four). We drove through Beallsville the following summer, but the graveyard was covered with corn. I presume Elizabeth’s stone was moved shortly after our visit. At any rate, Zephaniah Beall became a focus of interest for both of us.

According to Beall researcher Barbara Beall Mauri, this Zephaniah Beall’s mother was: “..Margaret Edmonston …. her mother was Col. Ninian Beall’s daughter, Jane Beall, and her father was Col. Archibald Edmonston.” Zephaniah’s father was “James Beall of Robert of Alexander.” (Barbara Beall Mauri, Comment dated  30 Jan 2016.)

Several years ago, I  discovered that James Perry Beall’s son by his first wife Sarah Jane Alpert/Albert (1791-1817) —Alexander Offutt Beall (1817-1888)–had a daughter named Permelia Beall (1855-1885). She married Jacob Stillions (1850-1910) — my second cousin three times removed on my father’s Stillians line. Permelia is my seventh cousin twice removed  on another line!

What a long way we have come since visiting little Elizabeth’s grave!]

4. Andrew Bell (Beall) (1655-1742). While discussing Andrew, I must also discuss #5. Robert Bell (Beall) (1655-1755) and their mother Margaret Ramsey, Jr. (1625-1655). It appears that Andrew and Robert were born in February 1655, making them twins. If Margaret died in February 1655, she either died in childbirth or shortly thereafter.  Her husband Alexander Bell (Beall) died in January 10, 1655. Since the children were orphaned, they went to live with relatives in either Saint Andrews and Saint Leonards, or perhaps Largo. I remember seeing an article that suggested Margaret remarried shortly after Alexander’s death, and that her second husband’s name was Robert. (I cannot recall his last name). The same article suggested that her son, Robert, was named for him.

Andrew Bell (Beall) was born in February 1655. He was christened March 28, 1655 in St. Andrews with Alexander and Margaret listed as his parents.(11) Jack E. McDonald notes:

Andrew Bell (also written Beall and Beale), the son of Alexander Bell and Margaret
Ramsay, was born in Fife County, Scotland.  He was subsequently christened in St.
Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Fife County on 28 March 1655.

Andrew later emigrated to the New World, where he settled in the Province of
Maryland.  Andrew died in Prince George’s County, Maryland in 1742.  His will, which
was written on 3 January 1742, was submitted for probate before the Prince
George’s County Court on 23 March 1742.  Andrew left his entire estate to David
Ross and John Goodman.  Because no wife or children were mentioned in his will, it
is assumed that he remained single throughout his life..(12)

5. Robert Bell (Beall) (1655-1755). (Possibly Andrew’s twin, as noted above.) Robert is not mentioned in the St. Andrews christening records. However, as noted in the opening piece by Jack McDonald, his brother, Alexander, refers to Robert as his brother in his will and for that reason, he is accepted as a member of the family.

Robert had two marriages. His first wife was Elizabeth Bidwell (1655-1728). Their child was John Bell (1675-1751). His second wife was Mary Berry (1677-1709). Their children were: (1) James Beall (1698-1783); — the father of Zephaniah Beall of Beallsville-(2) John Beall (1700-1767); (3) Richard Beall (b. 1702); (4) Margaret Beall (1707-1761).

Robert died October 9, 1755 in Prince Georges County, Maryland.


This article continues with Part Four: Alexander Bell (Beall) (1649-1744)



(1) “Alexander Bell” by Jack E. Powell–Wyoming (2012)., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 06 Jan 2016. Available online at

(2) Margaret Ramsey Bell (Sr.) Find-a-Grave Memorial No. 132260765. Website. Record added by Stella 03 Jul 2014. Date Accessed: 6 Jan 2016. Available online at

(3) Scotland, Select Marriages, 1561-1910 about Alexander Bell and Margaret Ramsey. Ancestry. com, Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 6 Jan 2016. Available online at

(4) “Another Biography,” Copied from the Freepages by herbertmail 09 Sep 2008. Posted on by herbertmail 09 Sep 2008. Date Accessed: 6 Jan 2016. Available online at

(5) Scotland Select Births and Christenings, 1564-1950 about William Bell., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 6 Jan 2016. Available online at http://www.

(6) “William Bell” by Jack E. Powell–Wyoming., Provo, Utah. Originally posted by bevloomis1 8 Jun 2013. Date Accessed: 6 Jan 2016. Available online at

(7) Scotland Select Births and Christenings, 1564-1950 about James William Bell., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 6 Jan 2016. Available online at

(8) U.S. and Canada, Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s about James Bell (Beall). Ancestry. com, Provo, Utah. Date accessed: 6 Jan 2016. Available online at

(9) “James Immigrant Beall”, copied by cindybeall1001 and posted to 22 May 2009., Provo, Utah. Originally posted by cindybeall1001. Date Accessed: 6 Jan 2016. Available online at

(10) Zephaniah Beall SAR Application No. 49340, dated 8 Nov 1929., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 6 Jan 2016. Available online at

(11) Scotland Select Births and Christenings, 1564-1950 about Andrew Bell., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 6 Jan 2016. Available online at

(12) “Andrew Bell, died  1742,” from THE BELL – BEALL FAMILY OF SCOTLAND AND MARYLAND,
BY JACK E. MAC DONALD., Provo, Utah. Posted by bevloomis1, 05 Jun 2013. Date Accessed: 6 Jan 2016. Available online at

The Ringing of the Bells–Part Two: They Came From Scotland

The Borders family of Bell may well descend from a Norman follower of David I who reigned until 1153 and was, by the end of the thirteenth century, well established in Dumfriesshire, Berwickshire and Perthshire. The name may derive from the French “bel” meaning “fair” or “handsome”. Since the derivation is descriptive, common ancestry cannot be assumed for all those bearing the surname. The arms attributed to the principal family are in the nature of canting, or punning, heraldry, alluding to the pronunciation of the name rather than its origin. The suggestion that it relates to living beside a bell tower seems far fetched. The Bells participated in the Borders disturbances as one of the riding clans of border reivers. In the thirteenth century Gilbert Le Fitzbel held lands in Dumfries. Sir David Bell was Clerk of the Wardrobe to Robert II. In 1426 William Bell’ s lands of Kirkconnel were confirmed by James I under a charter recorded in the register of the great seal. The Bells, along with other Borders families, became increasingly turbulent throughout the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. The Crown’ s determination to pacify the Borders led in 1517 to the Clan Bell receiving royal letters of warning to keep the peace. The tower of Blacket House was destroyed in a raid by the English in 1547. After the union of the Crowns in 1603 the family suffered much the same fate as the other border reivers; many emigrated to the new plantation lands in Ulster, where the name is among the twenty most numerous in that province. Others settled further a field throughout Australia and New Zealand. The descendents of the Lairds of Blacket House stayed in the realm but moved to the cities where they contributed substantially to learning and in particular medical science. Andrew Bell, founder of the Madras system of education, was born at St. Andrews in 1753. General Sir John Bell was a distinguished soldier during the Napoleonic Wars. George Joseph Bell wrote “Principals of the Law of Scotland”. More recently, Alexander Graham Bell was a pioneer in the development of the telephone. Although the Bells were a Borders, family, there are others of this name who are of Highland origin, and in that case, Bell is held to be a sept of Mac Millan. (1)


The Clan MacMillan has its roots in an ancient royal house and from the orders of the Celtic church. The progenitor of the clan was Gillie Chriosd, one of the sons of the Cormac, the Bishop of Dunkeld. As a Columban priest, his head would have been shaved over the front of his head, rather than in the more usual fashion.

This distinctive tonsure is described in Gaelic as ‘Mhaoillan’. The name MacMillan is therefore “son of one who bore this tonsure”.

An early branch of the MacMillan clan was to be found at Loch Arkaig in Lochaber. However, tradition states that the family was moved from this area by Malcolm IV and placed on the crown lands of Loch Tay in Perthshire. It was at these lands in Perthshire that Robert the Bruce, fleeing after the stabbing of the Red Comyn, was sheltered by the MacMillan chief. The family proved its loyalty to the Bruce by fighting at his side at the Battle of Bannockburn. (2)


Tracing the Bell/Beall lines in Scotland is a particular challenge, especially since there were so many Bells, and they traveled in all directions.  While scrounging through my Beall research folder, I found an article titled Bell/Beall/M’Bell that may shed some light on the matter. Unfortunately, I do not know where I got this source since I’ve had it in my folder for so many years. It appears to have been saved from the internet, and it may have been part of a larger work:

The “Border Bells”
The recognition of the likelihood that many of the southern Bells may also have been in origin M’millans (as suggested by the record of the 14th century Gilbert fitz Bel) would not in any way harm the Border Bells’ claim to have become a separate clan – as they do indeed appear in the royal records of the sixteenth century – any more than the universal acceptance of the MacAlisters’ descent from the MacDonalds derogates from their recognition as a clan in their own right. All modern clans evolved from earlier clans – the Clann an Mhaoil (the MacMillans) from the Clans Cormaic and Aibertaich (from whom come the surnames MacCormack and MacAverty) and Clan Donald (the MacDonalds) from Clann Somerhairle (surname, MacSorley) – and the same process of surname evolution/choice would have happened in the middle ages in the then Gaelic speaking Southern Uplands of Scotland as in the Highlands. This is not to deny that some “Border Bells” may have come from England – and would therefore have had nothing to do with the MacMillans – but a French origin for any Scottish Bells looks extremely dubious. It is clear, for instance, that the patronymic appellation “fitz”, which appears in English records relating to Dumfries and Galloway in the fourteenth century, is simply the Norman-French version of the Gaelic patronymic “mac”; and no more indicates a French origin for the fitz Bells than it does for their contemporaries the fitz Canes, who are simultaneously to be found recorded as McKans.

            Bells who can prove that their ancestors came from the Borders, and particularly from the Middlebie and Kirkconnel areas of Dumfries-shire, may indeed look to the successors of the Bells of Blackethouse as their chiefs; but in doing so might care to distance themselves from the insulting claims put forward by some that Bells who accept a connection between their own name and that of MacMillan have been fooled and are perpetuating a myth. The truth has long been clear in the Highlands of Scotland, as it is to genealogists and Gaelic scholars throughout the home country today, whatever may be thought elsewhere in the world. (3)

In an article titled “Colonel Ninian Beall”, Ruth Beall Gelders discusses Ninian Beall’s Scottish ancestry as follows:

Ninian Beall had the distinguished name of a Christian Saint and a Druid Priest, prophetic of his future prodigious leadership and experience.

He was probably descended from the Celts who came to Scotland about the 4th century BC. The Celts were known in Europe from the second millennium BD. Armed with iron weapons, they spread rapidly over Europe, introducing the newly developed iron industries. Greek influences stimulated the use of the chariot and later of writing, and art flourished in richly ornamented styles.

By the 4th century BC, the Celts could no longer withstand encroaching tribes, so they came across the sea to England, Ireland, and Scotland. A division of the northern Celts called Picts or Cruithne settled in Fife in Scotland. They had a hierarchical tribal organization in which priests, nobles, craftsmen, and peasants were clearly defined. They were agriculturists who reared cattle and owned domestic animals, and were tall with long heads, light eyes, and dark or red hair.

The Celts relied on the ministry of the Druids. For a long time, the powers of the priests were kinglike but later the priests became less political and were leaders in the Druid religion, the advancement of art and writing, and teachers of children. The Druids were worshipers of nature and considered the oak tree and the mistletoe which grew upon it to be sacred. They believed in the immortal soul, and its departure at death into another, not earthly, body.

The Druid priests became known by the name Beall, with its various spellings, Beal, Bell, Bel, or Beall. (Genealogical column in “The Warcry,” Salvation Army paper 1936).

Christianity was accepted by the Celts about the 5th century AD. It was brought to Scotland by St. Ninian and his disciples. St. Ninian was the son of a British chief in Galloway who was already Christian. Many churches were dedicated in St. Ninian’s name. He is buried at the cemetery on Molindenar Burn. Ninian Beall was possibly one of many who were named for St. Ninian. (4)

Ninian Beall’s Scottish ancestors settled in Fifeshire in the areas of St. Andrews and Largo.  Records pertaining to his direct ancestors are a bit murky. His father has been established as Dr. James Bell/Beall (1603-1641)–a Reverend and not a Medical Doctor, who was educated at the University of Glasgow–and his mother was Anne Marie Calvert (1603-1646).  My husband Howard actually attains his Beall ancestry through two connecting Scottish Beall lines. His connection to Ninian Beall is through the Magruder line. And his connection to Alexander Beall (1625-1655) is through his main Beall line. I believe it is fair to say that people have many differing opinions about this ancestry. What I present here is the sum and substance of my own findings. If my conclusions differ from others, so be it. My conclusions are subject to change. Any new discoveries will result in future articles. What I present here is what I have discovered to date.

The earliest Beall ancestors I have been able to find in Fifeshire are William Bell (1535-1600) and his wife, Margaret Patterson (1534-1600). Two of their children were Sibil/Sybel Bell/Beall (b. 1555), who married a Graham, and Howard’s ancestor,  Alexander Bell/Beall (1565-1612). William was a weaver by occupation. In those days, the trades were more important than wealth and royalty because the trades kept the wealthy royals supplied! Alexander Bell followed his father’s occupation as a weaver, per the following account:


Alexander BEALL was born in 1565 in Largo, Fifeshire, Scotland. He died in 1612 at the age of 47 in Largo, Fifeshire, Scotland. Alexander was a braboner (Scottish for weaver).

In 1967, a search was made for an ancestor of James Beall by the Scots Ancestry Research Society. The report said there are no existing parochial registers for St. Andrews prior to 1627, and the birth of Alexander Bell was not listed in the record of 1627-29. There is little hope of learning the parents of Alexander through these records. The Index of Testament for the Commissariat of St. Andrews, which included Fife, was consulted. A will was recorded 8 Nov 1653 for Christian Traill, wife of William Bell the Younger, who died July 1653. No children were mentioned but William Bell the Younger, and William Bell the Elder, braboner of St. Andrews, were named. It may be possible that William Bell the Elder is the father of both William Bell the Younger and Alexander Beall, who married Margaret Ramsay. The William Bell who witnessed the baptism of William, eldest son of Alexander and Margaret on August 22, 1647, makes [it] seem probable.

Source: “Maryland Heritage” A Family History, Katherine Beall Adams, 1983,p.32. Particular Register of Sasines (property) for Fife was also consulted. Here recorded, June 1646, that Alexander Bell, braboner of St. Andrews, had inherited from Christian Paterson, daughter of his grandmother’s brother (his first cousin once removed), the property of “Northmure”. That same year Alexander married Margaret Ramsay. He is described in the record as a young man. William the Elder is not mentioned in the index for 1603=1609 or 1617-1660.Perhaps it is possible to trace the ancestry of Margaret Ramsay or Christian Paterson for some clues. (Source: Adams,p. 32)
Source:Ancestors of Homer Martin Taylor(worldconnect)
Parents: William BEALL.

Spouse: Margaret RAMSEY. Margaret RAMSEY and Alexander BEALL were married in 1593 in Largo, Fifeshire, Scotland. Children were: Dr. James B. BEALL, William BEALL, Andrew BEALL.(5)

William Beall/Bell, a child of Alexander Bell and Margaret Ramsey, was a brother of Dr. James Bell and an uncle of Ninian. He was born in 1599 in St. Andrews, Fifeshire Scotland, and he after 1653 in Largo. William had two marriages, and both wives were named Christen. His marriage to Christen Gourlay (1605-1639) took place about 1620 in St. Andrews. Their children were:

  1. Alexander Bell (1625-1655).(6) [Howard’s direct Beall line. A number of people believe that Alexander was a brother of Ninian Beall, but that has never been proven.]  I will discuss Alexander in Part 3.
  2. Jeane Bell (b. 1633). Jeane was born September 5, 1633 in St. Andrews.(7). No additional information.
  3. Bessie Bell (b. 1637). Bessie was born in January 1637 in St. Andrews. (8) No additional information. It is possible that William’s first wife died in 1637 during the birth of Bessie. Bessie may have died at birth or shortly thereafter.

On December 5, 1639, William married Christen Trail in St. Andrews, Fifeshire.(9). Their children follow:

  1. William Bell (1642-1725). William was born before February 5, 1642 in St. Andrews, (10) and he died in 1725 (location unknown)
  2. James Bell (b. 1644). James was born before February 17, 1644 in St. Andrews. (11) No additional information.
  3. Andrew Bell (b. 1650). Andrew was born before January 20, 1650 in St. Andrews. (12) No additional information.


This article continues in Part Three with Alexander Bell (1625-1655). [Ninian Beall will return in a later piece relating to the Magruders].



(1) Clan Bell, Celtic at Copyright 1995-2015. Date Accessed: 30 Dec 2015. Available online at

(2) Clan MacMillan History. From The Scot Clans Website (2013). Date Accessed: 30 Dec 2015. Available online at

(3) Bell/Beall/M’Bell. Internet source–full citation unknown. Copy of page located in Beall Research Folder (Barbara Inman Beall) 30 Dec 2015.

(4) Ruth Beall Gelders, Daughters of the American Revolution, Joseph Habersham Chapter, Atlanta, GA. Colonel Ninian Beall (1976). Located on Kim Beall’s Beall Ancestry Pages. Kim Beall, 1996 at Date Accessed: 30 Dec 2015.  Available online at

(5) FrancesCHall196248, “No Clear Father.”, Provo, Utah. Originally submitted 28 Dec 2014. Date Accessed: 02 Jan 2016. Available online at

(6) Family Data Collections about Alexander Bell/Beall. Individual Records., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 02 Jan 2016. Available online at

(7) Scotland, Select Births and Baptisms about Jeane Bell., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 02 Jan 2016. Available online at

(8) Scotland, Select Births and Baptisms about Bessie Bell., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 02 Jan 2016. Available online at

(9) Scotland, Select Marriages, 1561-1910) about William Bell and Christen Trail., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 02 Jan 2016. Available online at

(10) Scotland, Select Births and Baptisms about William Bell., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 02 Jan 2016. Available online at

(11) Scotland, Select Births and Baptisms about James Bell., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 02 Jan 2016. Available online at

(12) Scotland, Select Births and Baptisms about Andrew Bell., Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 02 Jan 2016. Available online at

The Ringing of the Bells: Part One– An Introduction: Colonel Ninian Beall (1625-1717)

Col. Ninian Beall (1625-1717)

Col. Ninian Beall (1625-1717)

“Did you see the article about Col. Ninian Beall?”

Howard’s voice rang excitedly over the telephone. Puzzled, I frowned before responding–

“Col. Ninian WHO?”

“My ancestor! It’s in the paper on the picture page.”

By now it was early 1964. Howard and I were to be married in the spring. I opened the paper to the picture page and read that Jacqueline Kennedy bought a house once belonging to the Bealls in Washington D.C.  Thereafter, I was regularly fed a steady diet of Bealls and their ancestry to the point of exploding. Making matters worse, these feedings often degenerated into arguments of which side of the family had the better ancestry: the Bealls or the Warfields.

“Warfield!” my mother asked when I mentioned the name. “Is she related to the Duchess of Windsor?”

“Fourth cousin–or something like that,” I answered

Howard’s aunt, Belle Beall (pronounced Bell) of North Carolina did the original research concerning the Bealls and related families. She was married to his uncle, George Beall, my father-in-law Edward Beall’s brother. They had no children, so Belle devoted her life to libraries, court houses, and state archives in search of Beall and related family ancestry. After YEARS of research, she sent the completed packet to family members. As far as I know, Howard’s family’s packet was kept in an attic trunk until the day Mrs. John F. Kennedy’s new residence was announced. And then, I heard nothing BUT! I really sprang to life when Howard made an announcement one evening.

“If we have a boy, his name will be NINIAN!”

“OH NO, HE WILL NOT!” I announced. “Do you want all the kids calling him Ninny or Nincompoop?”

Then I fell silent, wondering whether I really wanted to become a member of this clan!

No doubt realizing the complete look of boredom on my face, my future mother-in-law added the following comment:

“Well, Barbara, I suppose your ancestors were all poor farmers!”

How little we all knew at the time!


Describing Col. Ninian Beall as a colorful figure is a gross understatement. I retired from teaching in 2009 and recall an incident that happened my last semester at Metro State. I was heading down the hallway toward my office when the office administrator’s voice rang through her open doorway.


I stopped in my tracks and turned.

Did she say Ninian Beall?

Returning to her doorway I peered inside.

“Ninian Beall!” she repeated.

“My husband’s ancestor,” I told her.

“I thought so when I read the comic strip. The name was spelled the same as yours.”

“Comic strip?”

“The Washington Post ran a series of cartoons about him several years ago.  I saved them because I thought there was some connection with you, and I ran across them the other night. I’ll bring them tomorrow and put them in your box.”

Col. Ninian Beall awaited me in my mailbox on my return to campus a day or so later. I had already told Howard about the cartoon series–something that excited him immensely and delighted him more so when I arrived home with the collection. I had also discovered that the internet was full of stories about the series, per the following messages on a genealogical bulletin board:

“Magruders who have associations with Ninian Beall will be interested in the “Flashback” series in the color comic pages of The Washington (DC) Post. While taking a few “liberties” with history, the 17 Mar 2002 strip was on “Showdown at Dunbar,” on 24 Mar “Scottish Slaves” and 31 Mar “The Beall Land Grant” which details Ninian Beall’s rise from “imprisonment” to owning more than 20,000 acres “which covered much of present-day Washington, D. C. including Capitol Hill, the White House and Georgetown.” Creator Patrick M. Reynolds shows the latest strip on his web page ; along with some books on Scottish heritage and wars (and references to some of his other strips on NY, PA and TX). It’s not every day you can cite the “funny pages” in your family research!”(1) 

[NOTE: The “Red Rose Studio” link is no longer working. BB 24 Dec 2015]

This message garnered interest, as noted below, posted by RRatliff0932:

“Magruders are linked with Bealls in the 7 Apr 2002 “A Brain Tonic” on The Washington Post Sunday color “funny pages.” Ninian Beall “owner of most of what is now Washington, DC, married Ruth Moore in 1667. He was 42; she 16 . . . One of their daughters, Sarah, married Sam [sic.: Samuel] Magruder. Sam’s father [Alexander, the immigrant] fought in the Scottish army alongside Ninian and was also captured.” A century later some of the two families moved to Georgia where Martha Bernetta Beall married into the Chandler family and a son of that marriage bought a “brain tonic” from an Atlanta chemist, changed the formula but kept the name: Coca-Cola! “(2)

Dang, if this isn’t funny! I thought when I carted Col. Ninian home inside my briefcase.

As previously noted, Howard was elated! No sooner did I hand over the series when he raced toward the car, drove to the local UPS store and had the whole series laminated for safekeeping.

I wish I could say this series still exists online, and I suppose it does in archived issues of The Washington Post. The artist’s website is no longer available. (Well, how many websites still exist after thirteen years! I kept one for ten, another for five, and this blog for the last year!) However, while searching for the cartoon series, I did make an interesting discovery from “The Strange Rock of Georgetown: Colonel Ninian Beall”:

With such a lineage, it’s no wonder that the legendary Ninian Beall earned himself a monument in Georgetown. It took almost 200 years but on October 30, 1910 hundreds of family members and friends gathered at St. John’s Episcopal Church on O St. NW for a special ceremony. Among the attendees were members of the Society of Colonial Wars, American Clan Gregor, and many relatives of the Beall family. In Ninian’s name, a bronze-plated rock was placed on the lawn of the church. The plaque read: “Colonel Ninian Beall Born Scotland 1625, Died Maryland 1717, Patentee of Rock of Dumbarton, in grateful recognition of his service.”[3]

That’s all fine and good, but not really all that remarkable. After all, we live in a city of monuments and memorials… Yes, but not a memorial quite like this. According to the Washington Post account of the dedication ceremony, the stone mason in charge of the rock hid something special inside the marker:

Few of those attending the services knew that in a hole hidden by the tablet were a number of articles placed there by I.B. Millner who secured and cut the stone. Mr. Millner is an enthusiast on aviation and placed in the hole a photograph of a Curtiss biplane in flight, an editorial on aviation cut from a Washington newspaper, and a program of the exercises and several pictures. He predicts that some time in the far-distant future the stone will fall apart, and future generations will read wonderingly of the beginnings of flying.[4]

Wait, what?

Apparently I.B. Millner really liked airplanes and decided to turn Ninian Beall’s memorial into a homemade aeronautics time capsule. You know, just because… (No word on whether he included anything about the 1903 Langley Aerodrome, but if not he totally should’ve.) Bizarre.

As far as we can tell, Millner was going rogue with this one. There doesn’t seem to be a connection between Ninian Beall and the miracle of human flight. Then again, Beall accomplished a whole lot during his extra-long lifetime. So maybe he was working on a flying machine, too. But probably not…

And so – at least until the rock breaks open – the story ends with a weird guy receiving a rather weird monument filled with some weird articles about airplanes. Like we said before, bizarre.(3)

I have a feeling this whole series is going to be bizarre!

To be honest, I’ve been dragging my feet in the search for Ninian Beall. Colonel Ninian was Howard’s special focus. I had my own family tree to climb.

Howard began his research in 1990 by using Belle Beall’s manuscript as his starting point. I retyped it for his father in 1989, making an extra copy for Howard. Then I punched Howard’s copy and placed it in a notebook. And my warning?

“Don’t take those pages out of the notebook! You will lose them forever.”

He did!

The pages are lost and extend all over the house in various boxes, etc. Howard would remove pages and take them to the local Family History Center or to the  library whenever we went out to do our research. But those pages were never returned to the notebook. As a result and after my retirement, I had to rebuild Howard’s entire tree on Ancestry!

But the story doesn’t end here.

I’ve been climbing my family tree since 1991 when I first accompanied Howard to the Denver Public Library. We went to the genealogy section, and he directed me toward the county history collection.

“You will find your ancestors in these books!” he told me.

“My ancestors aren’t going to be found in ANY of these books!” I argued, harking back to my mother-in-law’s early comment regarding  poor farmers!

To humor him, I located the Adair, Iowa County History. When I found my great-grandfather, Levi Clay, listed in the Index, I selected two additional histories: one for Floyd County, Iowa–my Dad’s Inman family–and one for Jasper County, Missouri–my mother’s Spence line–and hauled them to a table.

“I thought you said you wouldn’t find your ancestors in those books!” Howard teased.

“Apparently, they were more than poor farmers!” I retorted,

They were!

Col. Ninian Beall was Howard’s seventh great-grandfather.


Col. Ninian Beall was my eighth great-grandfather!

(Something I did not discover until this past year and something I have several DNA confirmations to support!)

Not only that, but Col. Ninian Beall was a direct ancestor of my mother-in-law, Mildred Lee Warfield (Beall) (1917-2007).

And after all those Warfield vs. Beall discussions I heard years ago! Something she never knew!

Thus begins the saga of Howard’s eccentric Beall line and related families and more of my strange ancestors as well.

I hope to present a new episode each week until the series is finished. However, there are other lines I am working on from my family, so I will be working on articles from those lines from time to time as well. As noted in a previous entry, the articles on this blog are all linked here by surname and/or topic, so the Beall families will all line up under Beall, etc. (At least I think they well. They have a habit of doing their own thing!)

This series is guaranteed to be a wild ride!


(1) “Ninian Beall Makes Comic Pages”, posted by Robroyr 30 Mar 2002. Magruder Message Board, Ancestry. com, Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 24 Dec 2015. Available online at

(2) “Ninian Beall Makes Comic Pages”, posted by RRatliff0932 06 Apr 2002. Magruder Message Board,, Provo, Utah. Date Accessed: 24 Dec 2015. Available online at http:://

(3)  Ariel Veroske. “The Strange Rock of Georgetown: Colonel Ninian Beall”. From Boundary Stones: WETA’s Local History Blog. 15 Jul 2013. Date Accessed: 24 Dec 2015. Available online at


A Time and a Season



Christmas is two days away. New Year 2016 is on the horizon. I find myself reflecting upon this blog and deciding upon a direction to take.

Most of this year has been devoted to the Spence line. I had been promising it to people, but I needed to update my data first. So the task of updating the information and writing it down has been significant.  Now with Spence completed, I am pondering what to do next.  And several lines are awaiting my attention.

Since completion of the Spence line in September, I have written some articles pertaining to my father’s Inman line (the Paine connection; the Snow vs. White controversy; and the Clines). I had made some discoveries about those lines I couldn’t wait to share. However, I’ve made significant discoveries in other lines as well, which I am anxious to share. Howard’s Beall and related lines also beckon my call. Making a long story short, I have a lot of stories to tell. For that reason, my focus in 2016 will not be one-directional.

The articles on this blog are linked to categories in the menu by family surname or by topic. I devised those categories while working on Spence. And they seem to work well with what I am doing. I prefer the article format over writing a book.  Books have a life spam and are expensive to do. Articles are more flexible and easier to complete. So I do not plan to write any more books. But I will be writing tons of articles.

Wishing you all a blessed Christmas and a great 2016!



Up On The Housetop: A Family Picture Album


Howard Lee Beall at approximately six months of age. Taken summer 1938, Sykesville, Maryland

Howard Lee Beall at approximately six months of age. Taken summer 1938, Sykesville, Maryland

Barbara Ann Inman, taken at two months of age ca. July 1943, Cedar Rapids Iowa

Barbara Ann Inman, taken at two months of age ca. July 1943, Cedar Rapids Iowa

Our parents: Gordon Loren Inman and Elva Gail Spence Inman; Edward L. Beall, Sr. and Mildred Lee Warfield Beall

Our parents: Gordon Loren Inman and Elva Gail Spence Inman; Edward L. Beall, Sr. and Mildred Lee Warfield Beall. Our wedding April 25, 1964, Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Brian (age 4) and Debbie (age 2)), taken December 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Brian and Debbie, taken December 1973, Cedar Rapids, Iowa.



Brian, LuAn and Brandon, taken Christmas 1991/2, Broomfield, Colorado

Brian, LuAn and Brandon, taken Christmas 1991/2, Broomfield, Colorado. They were married in Broomfield March 9, 1991.

Debbie and Dee's Wedding, August 22, 1992, Broomfield, Colorado

Debbie and Dee’s Wedding, August 22, 1992, Broomfield, Colorado









Group shot taken in our driveway Christmas 2005: Brian, Jason, LuAn, Brandon, Trinity, Joshua, Debbie, Howard and Mandy

Group shot taken in our driveway Christmas 2005: Brian, Jason, LuAn, Brandon, Trinity, Joshua, Debbie, Howard and Mandy



Debbie and Dee, Joshua, Jason and Mandy. Taken about 2003.

Debbie and Dee, Joshua, Jason and Mandy. Taken about 2003.








Howard teaching Brandon's daughter, Trinity, how to make a dove call. Taken in Broomfield, Colorado about 2006.

Howard teaching Brandon’s daughter, Trinity, how to make a dove call. Taken in Broomfield, Colorado about 2006.

Brandon's daughters Brooke and Delaney. Taken in Broomfield, Colorado Christmas 2009

Brandon’s daughters Brooke and Delaney. Taken in Broomfield, Colorado Christmas 2009


Joshua and Dallas at their high school graduation, May 2012

Joshua and Dallas at their high school graduation, May 2012

Dee, Jason and Brian at Jason's high school graduation May 2014

Dee, Jason and Brian at Jason’s high school graduation May 2014


Mandy and her prom date May 2014. She will be graduating this spring.

Mandy and her prom date May 2014. She will be graduating this spring.



Brian has been battling cancer this past year. Debbie has been the "Chief Supporting Officer."

Brian has been battling cancer this past year. Debbie has been the “Chief Supportive Officer.”

Team Brian: Debbie, Brian, Mandy, Dallas, Jason, Dee, LuAn, Joshua

Team Brian: Debbie, Brian, Mandy, Dallas, Jason, Dee, LuAn, Joshua. Debbie organized a Gofundme account for Brian as he wages his war against cancer. With Team Brian on his side, Brian will win his war!!

 Wishing each of you a blessed holiday season. May you have a wonderful Christmas and a happy and joyous New Year 2016.

Barbara and Howard Beall

Christmas 2015










In Search of the Perfect Tree

Brian, Debbie and Louie the cat in front of our tree in Missouri--Taken Christmas 1977

Brian, Debbie and Louie the cat in front of our tree in Missouri–Taken Christmas 1977


Once upon a time, we lived in the woods in Missouri. We lived there for three years before returning to “civilization.” My special memory about those years centers around our annual tree displayed in our dining room beside our circular table.  We always put up our tree the week before Christmas, enjoyed it through the holiday season and then took it down. But the day the tree was chosen was awesome.

Howard, Brian, Debbie and Heidi the poodle--Taken in Missouri December 1977

Howard, Brian, and Debbie getting ready for their adventure–Taken in Missouri December 1977

On the day of the grand selection, Howard, Brian, Debbie, Louie the cat and Heidi the poodle would embark upon their journey into the woods. Howard shoveled a path leading down toward the woods. And then the procession began: Howard leading the way with his axe in hand, Brian and Debbie behind him, Louie the cat springing from tree to tree along the path, and Heidi bringing up the rear. I stood on the back deck watching them disappear, and then returned indoors. While waiting for them to return, I lined the kitchen counter with boxes of ornaments and checked on their progress from time to time

Debbie, Brian, Me and Louie the cat--Taken in Missouri 1977

Debbie, Brian, Louie the cat and me–Taken in Missouri October 1977



We moved to the woods in October 1977, and Louie the cat moved in with us. He belonged to the prior residents and vanished into the woods the day they were moving. Thereafter, he accessed the house through the open dryer vent until we hooked up the dryer. When he resorted to sitting on the porch railing and meowing through the window, we decided to make him a member of our family. The former resident did stop by one day–a heart-stopping experience because Louie was already a member of our family, and we were afraid he wanted him back.

“Naw!” the man told us. “We have another cat now. Louie took off, and we decided he would be happier here.”

The man was just there for the window air conditioner.

Needless to say, we were greatly relieved. We had already grown attached to the little orange tabby.

Brian and Heidi the poodle on our back deck--Taken January 1978--just before the blizzard!

Brian and Heidi the poodle on our back deck–Taken January 1978, just before the blizzard.

Heidi the poodle joined our family Christmas 1977. We traveled to Ames, Iowa where Howard’s parents lived, enjoying our Christmas at home a day before our departure. The actual celebration was in Ames, and Howard’s parents had recently moved there. A medium-sized black poodle greeted us through the glass window in the foyer.

“Mom has another poodle!” Howard commented.

She wagged her pom-pom tail and shook the jingle bells on her head. We didn’t know it when we first arrived, but our family would have another member upon our departure. Heidi returned to Missouri with us. She missed the 1977 tree hunting expedition, but she was certainly present for Christmas 1978. After that experience, she always accompanied Howard whenever he headed down that path into the woods. So did Louie!


Presently, the tree gatherers returned: Howard dragging a tree behind him; Brian and Debbie hopping from drift to drift; Louie the cat still springing from tree to tree; and, Heidi bringing up the rear. Once the tree entered the house and was secure in its stand, Louie shot up the middle. For the three Christmases we lived there, I had to fetch the little rascal from inside the branches. Keeping him from repeating the performance was a major hassle! His other favorite trick was to drink up the sugar-water at the base of the tree!

Brian, Howard and Red the pony--Taken Summer 1978

Brian, Howard and Red the pony–Taken Summer 1978

We stayed in the woods from Fall 1977 until August 1980. By Spring 1978, we were joined by Red the pony, who no doubt also joined the tree procession as well.

The annual tree processions discontinued after our move to Colorado with the advent of artificial trees. And while I enjoy decking the halls each year, I will never forget the simple life we lived in the woods and the custom of selecting a real tree!