An American Family History

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East Tennessee is part of Appalachia. At the end of the French and Indian War, colonists began drifting into the area. In 1769, they first settled along the Watauga River. During the Revolution, the Overmountain Men defeated British loyalists at the Battle of Kings Mountain. The State of Franklin was formed in the 1780s, but never admitted to the Union.

from Tennessee Cousins, p. 485-488
"Notes on the Origin and History of the Denton Family"

Dentons Came to Virginia and Settled During the Seventeenth Century

The Denton Family, its members rather numerous in the East Tennessee Country in pioneer days, came to the Colony of Virginia in the Seventeenth century. The writer is convinced by a survey of the records that those of the name who settled on the Watagua, later in Jefferson County, then Knox, Blount, Monroe and finally in Bradley, Roane and Polk Counties were all of the same tribe, as those who emigrants to Eastern Virginia.

George Denton was one of the headrights of Randolph Kirk, who located lands in Westmoreland County, Virginia, March 22, 1665. (Nugent's Cavaliers and Pioneers, p. 546.)

John Denton was on the list of immigrants presented by Capt. Moore Fauntelroy to
the Counsel when he was given a patent to a large tract of land on the North
Side of the Rappahannock River (Westmoreland County, Va.) May 22, 1650.
(Nugent p. 195). This same John Denton appears to have been in Accomac County, Virginia in 1666. (Nugent, p. 553)

James Denton, who married a Mary Morris, whose sisters (Morris) married William Ballard and James House, was living in Brunawick County, Virginia in 1768. (Vol. 1, Valentine Papers, p. 120)

William Denton was living in Lunenburg County, Virginia, in 1783 & was on a list of tythes taken by John Ballard, Jr.

Thomas Denton and his wife executed a deed in 1738 to William Williams in Brunswick County, Virginia (Book 1, p. 517) and one to Daniel Williams in 1752. (Book 5, p. 259 and 273)

Benjamin Denton was on the tax list of Granville County, N. C. in 1788,

& John Denton m. Miss J. Paine in C?? well County, N. C. in July 1812.

Also a Jesse Denton was living in the County of Franklin, N. C. in 1800 on the
Census of that year.

John Denton married Sarah Stark in 1797, Granville County, N. C.

Daniel Denton & John Morris were witnesses to will of Joseph Barmard, 1808, Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. Daniel Denton was married to Susanna White the daughter of Isaac White , in Washington County, Tennessee, May 5th, 1813. (She was a sister of William White of the Whites who settled at Four Mile Branch in Monroe County, Tennessee).

Margaret Denton married John L. Howard in Washington County, Tennessee, in 1850, and Mary Denton married Kikanah Howard in the same County in 1829. William Denton, [son of James Denton and Deborah Gerow] perhaps a brother of these two young ladies was married to Rachel Gibson in the same county in 1826.

In 1607 the London Company established Virginia as the first permanent New World English colony.


from Tennessee Cousins, p. 485-488
"Notes on the Origin and History of the Denton Family"

The Denton Family of Halifax County, Virginia

In Halifax County, Virginia, in 1814, Thomas Denton married Rhoda Cheatham the daughter of Bernard Cheatham.

Several members of one or two generations of the Denton Family settled in Halifax County, Virginia. Chief among these was a Benjamin Denton, a Berryman Denton and others.

Berryman Denton married Parmela Newbill in the year 1834, and Benjamin Denton married Ann Anderson, of January 12,1828. There is a deed executed by Benjamin Denton and his wife Peggy Ann Anderson, October 19, 1831, in Halifax County Virginia, in which they sell to William w. and Thomas A. Powell lands on Pole Cat Creek, which the grantors received from the estate of Richard D. Anderson (father of Peggy Ann Anderson. Long afterwards in Botetourt County some one stumbled on to their graves, with this inscription: Benjamin Denton, Peggy Anderson.

United in marriage July 24, 1793.
One child:
John A. Denton b. Aug. 6, 1794.

The theory has been advanced that Benjamin and his wife were headed for
Kentucky, and died on the way and were buried in this spot. By the dates one
must conclude that this was an older Benjamin and not the one who married Ann Anderson in Halifax County, Virginia, in 1828 as shown by the marriage records. They may have settled in Botetourt leaving children behind in Halifax County, Va.


from Tennessee Cousins, p. 485-488
"Notes on the Origin and History of the Denton Family"

The Denton Family of Bradley, McMinn and Sometimes of Monroe County

The Denton Family of Bradley and of McMinn Counties in East Tennessee, presents an interesting study. Any relationships are not stated and may only be surmised from the accumulated facts. They reach back into Virginia, up into Monroe and Washington and on out into Texas.

William A. Denton, after having been born in McMinn County, at Athens in 1829, finally settled down in Bradley County, where he and his wife had nine children.

Isaac Denton of McMinn County, was born in Monroe County, Tennessee, Oct. 25, 1840. He remained, save for moving back and forth for a time to Monroe county, a
resident of McMinn Co.

Considering the dates of birth of the two Dentons above, it may be summarized that they were not contemporaneous and that William A. Denton may have been an uncle of Isaac, of McMinn who was born in 1840. Or they may have been brothers, William A. being 11 years older, or more likely first cousins.

James Denton and Mary Grady were married in McMinn County in 1827, and his father, James Denton married Dorcas Mitchell, in Virginia, where both lived and died.

Mary Grady, who married James Denton, was of the Grady or O'Grady family of South Carolina.

James Denton and Mary Grady after being married in McMinn County in 1827, lived there about seven years and then moved to Monroe County. In 1840 they came back to Polk County and lived for 20 years or more, and then returned to Monroe County; then returned to Polk, lived there one year; came to Bradley, where they lived another year; then they left East Tennessee, and moved to Parker County, Texas where both died. They went to Parker County, Texas in 1872. This James Denton who removed to Texas in 1872 was by trade a brick mason and a farmer. He was a Methodist & his wife Mary Grady was a Presbyterian. James Denton who married Mary Grady in McMinn County in 1827, was born in Wythe County, Virginia, in the month of October, 1805, and was between 20 & 30 years old in 1830.

Isaac Denton (b. 1840) was one of the fourteen children of William Denton and Amanda Allen, both of whom we are assured, was born in East Tennessee. (The place of their birth, however, is not given). William Denton died, in 1856; his wife Amanda Allen in later years. Isaac Denton fought in the Army of the Southern Confederacy. In 1869 he was married to a widow, Mrs. Mary E. Van Zandt. They had seven sons and three daughters, the names of whom are not given, and are therefore unknown. This Isaac Denton, (born 1840) first saw the light of day in Monroe, E. Tennessee. In the United States Census of Monroe County, Tennessee (See Monroe County Notes) are found the following interesting entries:
James Denton, between 20 and 30 years of age, married.
Isaac Denton, between 30 and 40 years of age, married.
John Denton, between 30 and 40 years of age, married.
Reuben Denton, between 40 & 50 years of age, married.
Next to Reuben Denton on the census roll appears the name of Miles Cunningham, who is known to have lived at Four-Mile Branch. This would indicate that the Dentons lived in the same locality. On the old account book of Cunningham & Rankin at Four Mile Branch, Monroe County, Tennessee, in 1837 appears the names: John Denton
Isaac Denton and this shows that without doubt the John and Isaac above did live at Four Mile Branch. Armstrong Morrow's name appears on the Four Mile Branch list at
the same time. On the old Armstrong Morrow place, near the Cunningham &
Rankin store is the old Morrow graveyard, on top of the hill, and about half
of the old graves marked there bear the name of Denton. Armstrong Morrow was
a brick mason and James Denton(between 20 and 30 in the year 1830) was by
trade a Brick. The Morrow family came from Knox and Jefferson Counties
See the Jefferson County notes herein for the Denton family of Jefferson County, Tennessee. Were they not the same families?


from Tennessee Cousins, p. 485-488
"Notes on the Origin and History of the Denton Family"

James Denton of the Watagua who married Dorcas Mitchell

It is the tradition in the Denton Family that James Denton, who married Dorcas Mitchell, lived and died in Virginia, but this writer is convinced that he is the same James Denton, who settled in the Watauga Valley in East Tennessee, and the grandfather, instead of the father, of the James Denton who married Mary Grady, from South Carolina.

He probably had as many children as either Abraham or Thomas and Jacob, but it would be safer to say that he did have:
1. James Denton
2. Isaac Denton
3. John Benard Denton (who went to Texas)
4. Rev. Ozias Denton (who lived in White County)


from Washington County Marriages

Denton, Daniel married White, Susannah on 05-May-1812
Denton, Elizabeth married Garvin, Robert on 22-Oct-1837
Denton, H married Stevens, I C on 25-Dec-1839
Denton, Margaret H married Howard, John L on 16-Nov-1830
Denton, Martha married Davis, Charles on 20-Mar-1833
Denton, Mary married Howard, Elkanah H on 27-Oct- 1829
Denton, Polly married Price, Benjamin on 26-Mar-1806
Denton, Tabitha married Fuller, James on 19-May-1818
Denton, William married Gibson, Rachel on 15-Mar-1826