After David Chadwell
resettled along the Daniel
Boone Trail (U. S. Route
58) in Lee County, Virginia,
he moved on to another new
life in Tazewell, Claiborne
County, Tennessee. Actually,
the new home was only
twenty-five miles from Chad-
well's Station. Some of his
children moved with him, but
most of his sons remained
behind, farming the many
acres of the Lee County pro-
Before moving, David visited
Claiborne County numerous
times . During these visits, he This map depicts the tri-state area of Virginia,
purchased new tracts of land. Tennessee and Kentucky. The Virginia Chadwell
The visits continued for about property only 12 miles east of the Va-Tn-Ky
ten years until he officially intersection; the new Tazewell home only 15 miles
moved to Tennessee in 1800. south of the intersection; and, Harlan, Kentucky
As the Chadwell family grew only about 40 miles northeast of the intersection.
from it's American Colony
beginning in Pittsylvania
County, Virginia, two other
families also were settling in the American Colonies. One, the Lankford Family finding a
new home in Tryon, Rutherford County, North Carolina. The other, the Posey Family
was beginning its new life in Charles County, Maryland. Of the three families, it appears
that the Posey Family had the earliest start in the colonies in about 1645. Francis Posey
and Elizabeth Foster Humphrey Posey were the great-great-great grandparents of
Benjamin Leander Posey, our great-great-great grandfather. Benjamin L Posey married
Susannah Chadwell, daughter of David Chadwell. Benjamin and Susannah raised their
family in Tazewell, Tennessee. The couple bore ten children, one being Temperance, born
The Lankford Family began with William and Amanda Stone Lankford, both born in Cornwall,
England in 1695 and 1721, respectively. They married in England in about 1740. One son,
Robert, arrived with them in the American Colonies in about 1741 settling in Tyron,
Rutherford County, North Carolina near the South Carolina border. Robert, their first
born child, met and married Sybil Taylor in North Carolina. Nine children were born to
Robert and Sybil including our great-great grandfather Benjamin Berry Lankford. Many
of thier children and grandchildren moved across the South Carolina border about
twenty miles to the Spartanburg, Cherokee County area. Many of the Lankford
descendants are living their today. Benjamin Berry, born in 1797, decided to move a
little further from home and ended up in Greene County, Georgia about 200 miles away.
Some of the Posey descendants also migrated from Tazewell, Tennessee to Greene County,
Georgia. After becoming friend with some of the Poseys, Benjamin decided to accompany
them on a return visit to Tazewell.
While in Tazewell, Benjamin met and fell in love with Temperance Posey. She, also, was
born in 1797. They were married in about 1817 when both were twenty years of age.
Their sixth of ten children, William G Lankford, was born on March 14, 1828. As fate
dealt it, William G was the great grandson of David Chadwell. In fact, William was five
years of age when his great grandfather died at 100 years in 1833.
The question of how William G Lankford and some of his siblings ended up in
Harlan County, Kentucky, about fifty miles north of Tazewell, Tennessee can now be
answered. Two brothers, James and George Brittain, were born in Wythe County,
Virginia in1766 and 1768, respectively. There parents were Nathaniel and Elizabeth
Parks Brittain. While James migrated southwest to Lee County, Virginia, George traveled
to southeastern Kentucky. Both brothers were very industrious and opportunistic, eager
to improve their lives.
James, while in Lee County met and married Nancy Jane Chadwell, daughter of David
Chadwell. Their marriage took place at Chadwell's Station Church in 1790. James and
Nancy were the parents of eight children, all born in Lee County between 1792 and 1806.
The family farmed sections of the land left to Nancy by her parents, David and Susannah
Chadwell. Some of James and Nancy's children migrated to Knox and Harlan Counties
in southeastern Kentucky.
George B Brittain married first in the 1790's to Mary Polly Bailey. She was born about
1797 in Henry County, Virginia. Shortly after giving birth to the fifth of five children, Mary
died. Within a few weeks of her death, George married Nancy Elizabeth Posey, daughter
of Benjamin Leander Posey and Susannah Turner Chadwell Posey.
By 1800, George Brittain had moved to the southeastern part of Kentucky that was to
become Harlan County. In fact, after serving in the Kentucky State Legislator from 1813
to 1814, he was very instrumental in the establishment of Harlan County in1819. By 1804,
George had purchased a 200 acre tract of land in this Kentucky area. It was after building
a home on this property that a business trip took him to Claiborne County, Tennessee. It
was on this trip that he married Nancy Elizabeth Posey in 1816. Nancy accompanied her
new husband back to Harlan and set up homemaking with a ready and waiting group of
five children from George's previous marriage to the deceased Mary Bailey. Nancy must
have done something right- she and George had four more children.
Back home in Tennessee, things were continuing to happen. After Benjamin Leander
Posey's premature death in 1820, Susannah with children ranging in age from 13 to 20
years found she had some decision making to face. Although she had considerable estate
left to her from her father David Chadwell and her husband Benjamin Posey, and,
therefore, had no money problems, she still felt the need of a man in her life. She fulfilled
this need by marrying Daniel O Daniel in 1821.
Temperance, the oldest daughter of Susannah, had married Benjamin B Lankford in
1817, and now was the mother of two children, Dave and Elizabeth Ann. Her family
continued to grow until her last of ten children, Susan, was born in1847. Meanwhile,
three of her sons, Benjamin, William G, and Robert decided there were greener pastures
in Harlan County, Kentucky. They traveled to Harlan in about 1848. Their Aunt Nancy
Elizabeth Posey Brittain was already living there. So, being farmers, maybe they
figured she and George could hire them to farm their land. Anyway, the Harlan
connection is made. Now what?
There is another family living in Harlan having moved there from Russell County,
Virginia. The head of the family is David Yancey Lyttle, son of Harrington and Susannah
Bays Lyttle. Living with David and his wife Drucilla Posey Lyttle are two of David's
siblings, James (13 years) and Mary(7 years). David Yancey was a respected defense
attorney throughout southeastern Kentucky. In 1856, Mary Lyttle married William
G Lankford in Harlan, Kentucky.
William G Lankford II was the fifth of ten children born to William Sr and Mary
Lankford. He was born in Harlan County, Kentucky on January 10, 1867. William Jr
moved from Harlan to Clay County, West Virginia in 1897. In West Virginia, he
changed his name from William G Lankford II to William Lyttle.
The new William Lyttle married Mary Jane Thomas in 1894. William Bruce Lyttle I,
was born in 1897, the second of eight children.