Notes for Thomas Farrar: Thomas Farrar was born August 10, 1726, the fourth son of George Farrar and Judith Jefferson, at Farrar's Island, Chesterfield Co. Virginia. Both Thomas Farrar, and his younger first cousin (future U.S. President) Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) were named after their mutual grandfather, Thomas Jefferson II. Numerous decendants of Thomas Jefferson II were named after him long before his most illustrious grandson made the family name famous by writing the Declaration of Independence and serving two terms as President of the United States. It is not known what relationship, if any, existed between the president and his Farrar cousins.
Thomas and his brother, George Farrar, Jr., moved from Chesterfield Co. to Lunenburg Co. Virginia, which later became Mecklenburg Co., to join their uncle Field Jefferson (1702-1765). In 1749 Thomas Farrar is charged with a tithable for Thomas Akin, and soon became a planter who bought and sold a good deal of land. Patent books show that he patented 850 acres on a branch of Layton's Creek adjoining Lanier and Ellige in 1759 and 1772. His various land purchases totaled 1500 acres and show that he was a neighbor of the Howards, Moores, Clarkes, Laniers and Avary's, as well as his brothers and uncle Field Jefferson. About 1756 Thomas Farrar married Elizabeth Howard, daughter of Francis Howard and Dianah Hillsman (Thomas' sister-in-law since abt 1740). Dianah Hillsman's second husband was Thomas Farrar's brother, George Farrar, Jr., who had become Elizabeth Howard's step-father when she was about four years old. Thomas and Elizabeth raised a large family.
His father George Farrar died in 1772, and Thomas with brothers William and John served as executors of the estate. Sections of George Farrar's will, dated March 16, 1772 in Mecklenburg Coounty, mentioning son Thomas Farrar:
"I desire that at the death of my loving WIFE my Negro fellow Dick may choose which he please for his master of those of my sons, THOMAS FARRAR, WILLIAM FARRAR or JOHN FARRAR.
Item: I give to my son THOMAS FARRAR two young Negroes Sam and Annie.
I do hereby constitute and appoint my sons THOMAS FARRAR and WILLIAM FARRAR the executors of this my last will and testament. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and affixed my seal this 16th day of March 1772."
Executed & proved 12 Oct 1772, Mecklenburg Co., Virginia ******* Thomas Farrar's first cousin, Thomas Jefferson, wrote the Declaration of Independence and was one of it signers July 4, 1776. The DAR shows that Thomas Farrar served as a Major during the Revolution. SAR lists him as a Patriot. The Governor commissioned him a Lt. Col. in 1802. Other records refer to him as Col. Thomas Farrar.
The 1782 Census of Heads Of Families in Virginia lists Thomas Farrar in Mecklenburg County. His household consisting of eleven white persons and ten black persons (slaves). His mother Judith Farrar is listed as Head of her household nearby consisting of one white person (Judith, age 84) and four black persons (slaves). Thomas' brother William Farrar lived beside their mother. John Farrar resided nearby (Thomas' brother?)
Wife Elizabeth Howard died in 1782 in Richmond Co. Georgia.
The 1783 Census of Heads Of Families of Virginia lists Thomas Farrar in Amherst County. His household consisting of ten white persons and one black slave. Wife Elizabeth Howard had died the year before; a William Howard is a close neighbor.
The 1785 Census of Heads of Families of Virginia lists Thomas Farrar in Amherst County. His household consisting of eight "white souls." The property having one dwelling and two other buildings upon it. Neighbor William Howard's property listed as an Estate of the now deceased owner.
October 4, 1785, Thomas Farrar (of Spartanburg Co. South Carolina) bought from William Dickson (of Duptin Co. NC) for 60 pounds NC money 300 acres on head branch of Fairforest Creek middle grounds of Tyger River and Pacolate River, bordering John Prince. This land a grant of Oct. 26, 1767 George III via Governor William Tryon of NC to William Dickson; recorded in Mecklenburg Co. NC and on April 28, 1773 in South Carolina. (Is this record Thomas or his son Thomas??--several more land records...)
The 1787 Personal Property Tax List of Mecklenburg Co. Virginia named the Head of Household, males 16 years and older, names of slaves, and the number of horses and cattle owned. Thomas Farrar (age 60 at the time) is listed with two white males age 16-21. They are sons Abner (19 years) and Thomas (17 years); one slave over 16 years, and seven slaves under 16 years; names listed: Pat, Jim, Nelson, Edmund, Charles, Ephraim, Billy and Nan. Two horses and seven cattle also owned. Son Abel Farrar, 16-21 years old at the time, is listed at the nearby farm of Carter Clark, along with his three slaves; Jack, Jim and Fan, and six horses and ten cattle.
The Patent Land Survey Book D 1788-1799 of South Carolina lists Thomas Farrar as owning many thousands of acres of land in Greenville County, SC; along the Saluda River, Oil Camp Creek, Beaverdam Creek, Green River, and Gap Creek. (Is this Thomas or Thomas Jr.??)
In 1806 Thomas Farrar deeded to his grandson, Francis Howard Farrar age 5 (son of Abner), any land he might win in the Georgia Land Lottery.
At the end of his life Thomas Farrar lived with his son, Abner Farrar, who owned a large plantation on a branch of the Broad River, about two miles from Carnesville, Franklin Co. Georgia. Abner's family included his wife, Catherine Carter, and Thomas's grandchildren, (ages as of 1809) Elizabeth 17, Jesse Carter 14, Thurza 11, Francis Howard 8, Diannah Hillsman 3, and newborn William Malone.
Thomas Farrar died at his son Abner's home on August 20, 1809. His obituary appeared in the Georgia Express Newspaper of Athens, Georgia on September 9, 1809, and the Augusta, Georgia Chronicle on October 9, 1809. It stated that he was a first cousin of President Thomas Jefferson. (On file at the University of Georgia Library) In 1809 President Jefferson had just retired from public life to his estate Monticello in Albemarle Co. Virginia.
OBITUARY OF THOMAS FARRAR
"Died in Franklin County, on Sunday the 20th inst. (ultimate) Mr. Thomas Farrar, aged 83 years and 10 days. He was a cousin of the late President Thomas Jefferson. He expressed a great anxiety to be free from the burden of life and appeared to have no dread of death to his last moments. A few minutes before he expired he sat up in bed and possessed his mental faculties. He believed that all things were made for the glory of God and anything he could do could not change his purpose; he was averse to vice and revered morality, but thought there was no reality in enthusiastic religion."
Sources: Published censuses, Land records, wills and obituaries. Some Farrar's Island Descendants by Alvahn Holmes
More About Thomas Farrar and Elizabeth Howard: Marriage: Bef. 1756, probably Mecklenburg Co. Virginia.
Children of Thomas Farrar and Elizabeth Howard are:
Francis Farrar, b. April 08, 1764, Mecklenburg Co. Virginia, d. Abt. 1855, Henry Co. Georgia.
Absolom Farrar, b. Abt. 1765, Mecklenburg Co. Virginia, d. 1854, Henry Co. Georgia.
Abel Farrar, b. Abt. 1766, Mecklenburg Co. Virginia, d. 1834, Mobile, Alabama.
+Abner Farrar, b. September 16, 1768, Mecklenburg Co. Virginia, d. March 27, 1841, Marietta, Cobb Co. Georgia.
Thomas Farrar, Jr., b. August 18, 1770, Goochland Co. Virgina, d. October 18, 1839, Washington, Adams Co. Mississippi.