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 Topics on this page:

William Redden Sr. death date.

Attempting to sort out William Redden Seniors real name.

Serching for the parents of William Redden Sr.

William Redden Sr. and John Redden Sr. are two diffrent individuals.

Tracing Raleigh County, West Virginia First Families

Views From The Past

The History of Shady Springs Dstrict

 Virginia Counties as they were in 1810


 William Sr.s Death Date?

 Raleigh County WV, Probate Records, Appraisements, 1856-1903 page 34 reveals William Redden Sr. death date.

Looking at the West Virginia Wills and Probate Records, it indicate that William Redden Sr.s death date is not as previously thought. It was thought to be in 1862 because preveously that was the last known date showing a place of residence or tax records. The record below leads us to believe his year of death was 1869.



Transcribed from original above

Know all men by these presents that we, Hazzard Bragg and William Redden Jr., are held and firmly bound unto the State of West Virginia in the just and full sum of $300 for the time payment where of we bind ourselves our heirs oe (omissions excepted) jointly and severally, firmly by these presents sealed with our seals and dated this 6th day of February 1869.

The condition of the above obligation is such that whereas the above bound Hazzard Bragg has this day by the Recorder of Raleigh County been appointed Administrator of the Estate of William Redden Dec. d/+ (deceased) Now therefore if the said Hazzard Bragg shall well and truly perform and discharge his duties as Administrator as aforesaid then this obligation to be null and void, else to remain in full force and virtue.

 Attempting to sort out what William Redden Sr. real name was.

 William Redden Sr., has been referred to in various family records from diffrent family lines as: William Redden Sr., John William Redden, and William C. Redden, all listed as having the same children and spouse. 

Note: Found in the Raleigh County 1879 register of deaths, is a death record of Christina Redden daughter of William Redden Sr. and Francis Kaylor. The information in the record was given by John Redden, Christena's husband. The record lists Christina's parents as, "William C & Francis Redden".

One would surmise, that John, Christina's husband, the son-in-law of William Redden Sr. should know what his father-in-law's name was.


 We decided to take a closer look at the record, looking at what we believed to be the "C" in the record. We then looked for an expert of handwriting from the 1800's. We found an example that confirms that the letter in the record is a capital C. The example below of a capital C shown in the center of the handwriting examples, matches that of the record. The example is from a book called "Handwriting of American Records for a period of 300 years" by E. Kay Kirkham, Genealogist, and Published by The Everton Publishers Inc. P.O.Box 368 Logan, UT 84321


               Above is shown an enlarged area of the  record, it reads:  53 Wlm C & Francis Redden   


         Example of old cursive C shown in the above center section from the above mentioned book

But Wate!  While researching John Redden Jr.'s family, Something interesting was found. First of all, looking at their childrens birth records, the parents names are given as John Redden Jr. and Millie Plumley.

But on their daughter Ocie Redden's marrage record, the parents names were listed as William and Millie Redden. So it appears that John Jr. was either, William John Redden Jr. or John William Redden Jr.  

Found in early marrages of Raleigh County West Virginia, is the record of John's and Millie's marrage, dated the 5th of October 1865, it lists John Redden Jr. as 35, "the son of William and Frances Redden".

So that brings us back to William Redden Sr's Name. It appears that John Jr. was named after his father, William Redden Sr. so we can assume William Sr's name is either                              William John Redden Sr. or John William Redden Sr.

As for the above record showing what appears as a "C" recorded in Christinas death record, we need to take second look at that record.




Serching for the Parents of William Redden Sr.

Attempts to locate a connection between the Virginia / West Virginia and  Redden families of Kentucky is an ongoing investigated

As the result of the statement by Mary Redden Worley, the granddaughter of William Redden Sr. and daughter of William Redden Jr.  She records the following statement in a document dated March 29, 1939, "The Reddens came from Kentucky to this country."    Referring to Raleigh County, WV. 

In the same document Mary Redden Worley states that John Redden Sr. is the illegitimate son of William Redden Seniors Sister. We learn from John Senior’s death record that his mother was named “Sarah”

 The following was found on LDS Family History Library microfiche #'s 6103994 & 6103995  "Early deaths of Raleigh County. "John Redden Sr. died Sept. 13, 1885, of old age at 87 years. Born in the state of Kentucky, son of Sarah Redden. Death reported by son J.H.Redden.   

As the result of the two above mentioned records we believe Sarah Redden to be the sister of William Redden Sr. and John Redden Sr. to be his Nephew.

This also tells us that John Redden Sr. was born in 1798 nine years after William Redden Sr. who was recorded as being born in Virginia in 1789, according to the 1850 Raleigh County Census.

So, we do know that Sarah the sister of William Sr. was in Kentucky in 1798 when John Sr. her son was born.

This prompted me to start searching for a Redden family in Kentucky, in hopes of finding a family with children having the names of William, and Sarah.  What we found was a record entitled: John & Nehemiah Redden of Worcester County, Maryland. Recorded below:


John & Nehemiah Redden of Worcester County, Maryland Stmnt.Resp.

by Richard S. Uhrbrock Authors

Uhrbrock, Richard Stephen, 1894- (Main Author)


Micro reproduction of typescript (10 leaves), written in [1900?].

Includes Redding, Schoolfield, Jones and other related families.

John Redden (Redding) and his brother Nehemiah were included in the "Oath of Fidelity" of James Selby, 2 February 1778. In the 1800 Census for Worcester County, Maryland, John is listed with four males, five females and four slaves in his household. It is not known who his first wife was, however he was married to (2) Sarah Schoolfield, a widow, on 19 March 1800. He had children Stephen, Nehemiah, William, John, Eleanor, Betty, Sarah, Hancock and Peter named in his will. His son Nehemiah was settled in Woodford County, Kentucky by 1807. Family records indicate that Nehemiah married Ann Jones (b.1783) of Virginia in 1804. They were the parents of ten children.”

Note: It appears that john Reddens children listed above, must have been the result of his first marriage, not with Sarah Schoolfield, his second wife, as his son Nehemiah settled in Kentucky in 1807, seven years after John’s and Sarah’s marriage in 1800.

Then we came across this: Another Record about this family.

“The Redden family chronicles of Worcester County, Maryland

Authors: Redden, David (David Eugene), 1968- (Main Author)

Redden, Elizabeth (Mary Elizabeth), 1916- (Added Author)

Redden, Valerie (Valerie Weinmann Sinclair), 1971- (Added Author)

Sheetz, Patricia Smallwood (Added Author)

Redden, Rhea (Rhea Mae Zerba) (Added Author)


On preliminary: "Rhea (Zerba) Redden ... and Elizabeth Redden, researcher[s]; David Redden, Elizabeth Redden and Valerie (Sinclair) Redden, advisor[s] and editor[s]; Patricia Smallwood Sheetz, coordinator and layout.

Includes bibliography and index.

John Redden of Worcester County, Maryland, married ca. 1765-1769 Elinor Glass, daughter of Christopher Glass. Their exact marriage date is not known. John and Elinor were parents of a large family, consisting of five sons (Stephen, Nehemiah, William, John, and Peter) and three daughters (Eleanor, Hetty, and Sarah). Includes descendants, especially of Stephen and his son Nehemiah, b. 1812, who married Susan Taylor. Most descendants lived in Maryland, especially Worcester County.

The record Includes Redden, Boston, Hancock, Mason, Sparkman, Tull, and related families.

Subjects: Redden, Boston, Hancock, Mason, Sparkman, Tull.

Source:  Call Number - Location – Status 929.273 R248rd - FHL FAM HIST Book - Available”

Though the names of John’s children and the time frame make it appear to be a possible match, we simply do not have enough information to declare that we have found William Redden Seniors parents.

Going back to what we do know, the previously mentioned death record of John Redden Sr. tells us that he was born in Kentucky in the year 1798, 9 years after William Sir’s birth.

This tells us that his mother, Sarah Redden, the sister of William Sr. was in Kentucky in 1798 when John Sr. was born. That also indicates that Sarah Redden, the sister of William Sr. must have been older than William as John Sr., her son, was born nine years after Williams’s birth, according to his death record.

According to what we see from the above information, William born in Virginia in 1789 and John born in Kentucky in 1798 we might assume that the Reddens were in Virginia before they were in Kentucky, But if we take a close look at things as they were when William Sr. was born in 1789, We find that the area of the country that now makes up the State of Kentucky, was in its entirety in 1789, part of Virginia.  Kentucky did not become a State until 1792. So William may have been born in Virginia because that was what it was at the time of his birth.

A book called Handy Book for Genealogists, gives information on Kentucky:

It tells us that the area of Kentucky was first claimed by Virginia, Augusta County back in 1584, before it had been explored by white men. The first permanent settlement, Harrodsburg, was founded in 1774, then the next year Boonsboro was founded.  In 1776 Kentucky was designated as Kentucky County, Virginia.  In 1780 it was divided into three counties, Fayette, Jefferson, and Lincoln. The next division of counties took place one year after William Sr.'s birth, in 1790. There were nine counties formed from the above three counties. Those counties are, Mason, Bourbon, Woodford, Fayette, Madison, Jefferson, Mercer, Nelson, and Lincoln.

While doing some research on William’s brother Joseph Redden and his daughter Amanda (Redden) Engle, we came across something interesting, that  might prove to show a conection of the two redden families In looking at Amanda Redden Engle’s death record we find that she died in Cincinnati Ohio but was transported some 80 miles east to Sciotoville Ohio for berried. That brought up the question, why? Perhaps other family members lived there.

I have a copy of the death certificate of Amanda Melzina (Redden) Engle who, according to the certificate, was buried in Sciotoville Ohio April 29, 1901. I wanted to know what cemetery Amanda was buried in, and if there are any other Reddens or Engle's listed in the cemetery  or in the City Directory who may have been living there around the turn of the century 1900.

So to try and get some answers to these questions I wrote to the Portsmouth history department and ask them to do some research for us, what they found was that the cemetery that was in Sciotoville Ohio was moved to the Wheeleburg cemetery in 1914. The newspaper report said that the Sciotoville burial grounds were in bad shape because the little Scioto River had washed part of it away and at that time, September of 1914, the C & O Railway Company wanted to build a bridge with the cemetery site serving as one end of the new bridge. What is strange is that there was no record of Amanda being buried at the Sciotoville burial grounds and she was not listed among those who were transferred to the Wheelersburg cemetery, Perhaps Amanda was in part of the cemetery that was washed away by the river.



Her death certificate below shows that her burial was in Sciotoville Ohio.   The photograph above is of Sciotoville from the year 1911.


A search of the local areas census records revealed that Francis and Amanda Redden Engle lived in a couple of different placed close to Scioto county Ohio, as shown in a map later in this record.

Another interesting thing about this area of Ohio is that in 1858 we find William Redden Jr., Joseph’s brother, and his family showing up in Greenfield, Gallia County Ohio, very close to the areas that Francis and Amanda lived. Another point of interest, is that when we look at the Reddens from Worcester County Maryland, we found that they came down the Ohio river on flat boats, and first settled on the Kentucky side of the rives. Some are found close to Cincinnati on the KY side of the river. One other thing that caught my attention, was that according to a record called the Reddens of the East, It reveals that the Reddens came from Philadelphia PA traveling down the Ohio River by boats and landed at Limestone Landing which was at Maysville, Mason Co, KY. Maysville KY is just 67 miles by road today west of Sciotoville Ohio, and only 52 miles west from Portsmouth Ohio where Joseph and Sarah (Kidwell) Redden and family went when they moved north from Virginia. We know that Joseph and Sarah were there in 1861 when John W. Redden their son was born.

The 1860 Ohio census reveals another interesting fact about this area and the Redden Family. It listes William Jr, Sarah, Aaron, Clarkson and Mary, all born in Va., but are found in Greenfield Ohio, but then there was Eliza born in Wales, but John, Daniel, and Jane,  were all born in Ohio. They were listed in the census as all being in the same household with William Jr.s family. Those four individual were not part of William Junior’s immediate family, so what was the relation?  Just more questions! Were they descendants of John’s or Nehemiah’s family of Maryland? So when William went north from Virginia to a farm in Ohio, It appears he may have gone to stay with relatives, Reddens.

The 1860 Ohio census listed members of Williams Jr.s household that were in Greenfield Ohio as fallows:
Wm Reden                 38
Sarah Reden               40
Aaron Reden               14
Clarkson Redn            12
Mary Reden                9

Eliza Reden                25  Born in Wales
John Reden                19
Daniel Reden              16
Jane Reden                 2-

I assume Joseph and William Jr. took their families north to avoid the struggles that were showing up just before the start of the civil war which was, no doubt, already having an effect on the Virginia and the West Virginia area as the Civil War starter in 1861 but before then, there was already much commotion and divisions taking place in Virginia at the time. To give a brief  history that effected the lives of the Redden family of the West Virginia area just before the start of the civil war.                                                                                                                    

In 1860, the Trans-Allegheny District of western Virginia was divided into Northwest and Southwest districts. Map Source: US Geological Survey (USGS),

On April 16, 1861, three days after the fall of Fort Sumter in South Carolina, the New York Times predicted that Virginia would split if the state seceded.  The question was not "will the western part of Virginia split off" but "where will the new state boundary be drawn?"

Returning to Redden family research, what became even more interesting relating to our family members in connection to the Reddens from Maryland is that when you start looking at the Ohio and Kentucky map, you see that Joseph and Amanda lived in Portsmouth and Sciotovillea Ohio. We also see that Maysville, Mason Co, KY. Where the Reddens from the east landed, is very close to Portsmouth & Sciotovillea, Ohio.


The yellow dot on the map below is the location of Sciotoville Ohio, where Amanda (Redden) Engle, Joseph’s daughter was buried. Sarah, Josephs widow reportedly lived with Amanda and her husband in Ohio.

In looking at our Redden family history and the information above, I see some things that stand out in my mind.

1.  Mary Elizabeth (Redden) Worley, the granddaughter of William Redden Sr., William Juniors Daughter claimed that the Reddens came to the West Virginia Area from Kentucky.

2.  Our family history stated that William Sr. and Fanny Redden entered this country through the port of Philadelphia PA. We now know that they were born in VA. But it does lead us to believe that whoever in our family line that immigrated to this country, did come through Philadelphia.   The record mentioned previously concerning the Redden family from the east, states that they came from Philadelphia PA.

3.  John Redden and Elinor Glass of Worcester County, Maryland, were married between 1765 and 1769, had children named William and Sarah. Our William Sr. was born in 1789; we don’t know His sister Sarah’s birthdate.  But from the death record of her son John Redden whose death record states that he was born in Kentucky, indicates that Sarah was older than William Sr. Also we have reason to believe that William Sr. may have been born in Kentucky area while it was a part of Virginia.

4.  I find it interesting that one of the added authors of The Redden family chronicles of Worcester County, Maryland is listed as: “Redden ( Mary Elizabeth ), 1916- (Added Author)”. Is that just a coincident?   Our Mary Elizabeth Redden would have been 66 years old in 1916, We do know that in 1939 one year before her death at 90 she was recorded in a record by Aubrey Smith a historien of Beckley WV, saying that the “Reddens came from Kentucky to this country” Could it possibly be our Mary Elizabeth Redden ?


5.   We have not found any other records of a Redden families coming to, or through Kentucky other than the Reddens from Worcester County Maryland.

6.  Is it a coincident that our family members Joseph and William Jr. Redden when they left the West Virginia area and traveled north, went to a place very close to the arrival point of the Reddens landed from the east?

7.  We need to look closer at Eliza Redden age 25 from Wales and probably her younger siblings all born in Ohio, John age 19 and Daniel age 16; Jane age 2, who were included in the household with William Junior’s family in the 1860 Ohio Census. Could there be a connection to the Reddens from Maryland?

The things mentioned above lead me to believe that there could possibly be a connection between the two families. But more research is needed to make that connection,   if there is one?  We will keep digging!


The Shady Springs land record of 1850 - 1867  reveals that William Redden Sr. and John Redden Sr. are two diffrent individuals.

In the Raleigh County Death Record of John Redden Sr. it lists the died death date as, Sep. 13, 1885 in Raleigh County at the age of 87. The cause of death was reported as old age. The reporting family member was recorded as J.H Redden the son of the deceased.

Then we find that the Raleigh County Death Record also records the death of J.H.Redden as Apr. 9, 1899, in Raleigh County, at the age of 76. The cause of death was listed as Bright’s disease. The parents were listed as Wm. & Fannie Redden.

It appears that we are looking at two different families with children who had the same initials?

To date, no other document, census, military, land, or tax record has been found where the name John William Redden was used. All other records found use only William Redden Sr. or John Redden Sr.

In another record, recorded by Aubry Smith, Mary Redden Worley, granddaughter of William Redden Sr., states, “John Redden Sr. is the son of William Redden Sr’s sister.”  now know to be Sarah.

Ferther research reveals that we are indeed looking at two diffrent individuals having sons with the same name and living in the same general area.

Below is a partial copy of that record:

Name                            Residence              Nature of          Acres

                                                                       owners estate


Redden, Michael             Fayette              Annual Fee                   50        New River

Redden, William            Raleigh               Annual Fee                  100        New River



Redden, William Sr.       Raleigh               Annual Fee                 100        Water of Glade Creek

Redden, John Sr.            Raleigh               Annual Fee                 100        Glade Creek Hill



Redden, William Sr.       Raleigh               Annual Fee                 100       Water of Glade Creek

Redden, John Sr.            Raleigh               Annual Fee                 100       Glade Cr

Redden, Michael            Fayette               Annual Fee                  50       Waters of Sand Branch



Kalor, Henry                    Raleigh               Annual Fee                866       Piney & Glade Creek

(Transferred 534 Acres to J. Smith)

Redden, William Sr.         Raleigh              Annual Fee                100       Water of Glade Creek

Redden, John Sr.              Raleigh              Annual Fee                100       Glade Cr

Redden, Michael              Fayette              Annual Fee                  50      Waters of Sand Branch



Kaylor, Henry                  Raleigh               Annual Fee                 155      Piney & Glade Creek           

Redden, William Sr.        Raleigh              Annual Fee                 100       Water of Glade Creek

Redden, John Sr.             Raleigh              Annual Fee                 100       Glade Cr

Redden, Michael              Fayette              Annual Fee                  50       Waters of Sand Branch


The above land record continues with little change year to year from 1853 through 1866 each year listing William Redden Sr. and John Redden Sr. until the year 1867 when John Redden Sr. is listed, but William Redden Sr. no longer appears on the record.  

                       The History of the Shady Springs District

A History of the Shady Springs District, compiled and
published by the Shady Springs Women's Club, 1979.
Census of 1810 Raleigh County
Grandview Reunion Booklet
Early Raleigh County Settlers by W. A. Riffe.

The Shady Springs District is located in Raleigh County West
Virginia near the New River. Surrounding towns are Crow,
Beaver, Quinnimont, Table Rock and Grandview. Some of the
early families that settled there are the Reddens, Carpers,
McClures, Adkins, Meadows, Plumleys, and Kidwells.

In 1797 Francis Farley was employed by wealthy Greenbriar
County citizens to cut a road through Raleigh County.
William Redden Sr. is listed as the first settler in the
1810 Census of Raleigh County. Almost all of the early
settlers were illiterate unless from wealthy families.
Although he could not read or write, William Redden made
some shrewd land deals and owned several hundred acres of
land. It was heavily forested and rich in minerals. Many
settlers sought out river bottom land but there were some
isolated farms in the timbered areas. Wild game abounded
and bears were prized for their meat, grease and blankets.

There were no schools until 1865 because most families were
just trying to survive. Children worked and were considered
adults in their teens. In 1876, school terms were only four
months long and were held in log buildings 20 by 22 feet.
Teacher pay was about fifteeen dollars a month and teachers
moved from one school site to another. One school site was
listed as Redden. Others were Flat Top, Beaver, Richmond,
Carper,Tom Lilly, Scott, Hunt, Tilden, Sulpher Springs, and
Low Top.

About 1810, William and Fanny Redden bought a farm on the
level plateau on top of New River Mountain between Glade
Creek and Mill Creek and Mathias Kaylor bought a large tract
of land near Grandview. Many of their descendents still
live in Raleigh County today.


        Views From The Past     

William Redden Sr. and Fanny Kaylor's arival in Virginia. The formation of various counties, and changes in the county lines which occurred before West Virginia was formed.

The above map shows the Virginia County boundaries as they appeared in 1810 when William and Fanny arrived in the area that is now West Virginia

In 1810 William Redden Sr. and Fanny Kaylor, according to family history, came across the mountain to what is now Raleigh County, West Virginia and bought a farm on the flat plateau on top of New River Mountain, between Mill Creek and Glade Creek. At that time the county they settled in was Giles County, Virginia

West Virginia became a State in 1863.

However, Raleigh County was formed in 1850 from Fayette Co., Virginia.

The Redden family was in the area forty years earlier according to family history.

They lived in several different counties as the result of new counties being formed.

County history becomes important when trying to locate documents pertaining to family history. _____________

Raleigh County was formed in 1850 from Fayette County Virginia.

Fayette County was formed in 1831 from parts of Kanawha, Greenbrier and Logan Counties.

Giles County was formed in 1806 from Montgomery, Monroe, Tazewell, Craig, Mercer, and Wythe.

Because of changes in county lines, following the Redden and Kaylor arrival in the area in 1810, records pertaining to family births, marriages, deaths and land titles ect. may be found in various county seats, depending upon which was the governing county at the time.     


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