Updated May 24, 2019
York County was originally named Charles River, and was one of the eight original shires formed in 1634. The present name was given in 1643, probably in honor of James, Duke of York, the second son of Charles I. Its area is 123 square miles, and the county seat is Yorktown.
An early parish was Blisland Parish. Blisland Parish was created in 1653 in York County. New Kent County was formed from York County in 1654. Saint Peter's Parish was formed from Blisland Parish in 1679. In 1704, St. Peter's Parish was split into two parishes, it's lower part remained St. Peter's parish and it's upper part became St. Paul's Parish in New Kent County. In 1720, Hanover County was created from New Kent County, encompassing the entire parish of Saint Paul's Parish. Several parishes were formed from Saint Peter's Parish, but they were formed into counties other than New Kent.
Information regarding the GILLIAMs of the City of Williamsburg may be found here.
Blisland Parish, 1653-1654
Bruton Parish, by 1674
Charles Parish, abt 1692
Charles River Parish, abt 1634-1642
Chiskiack Parish, 1640-1643
Hampton Parish, 1643-1707
Marston Parish, 1654-1674
Middle Plantation, 1634-1658
Middletown Parish, 1658-1674
New Poquoson Parish, abt 1635-1692
York Parish, abt 1638-1707
Yorkhampton Parish, 1707
A Richard Gillman was transported by William Hoccaday in 1643. It is likely that this Richard is a near relative of the GILLIAMs mentioned in the bounds of Thomas Barbar, of New Kent. Barbar received 363 acs. on 16 Jun 1714 (Escheat L.) Thomas Taylor; lines of GILLAM, Richardson; & Hockaday; up Perrins Sw. to the mouth.
Later in Blissland Parish, Maj. William Hockaday is providing care for a Richard Gilman and a John Taylor.
At a vestry held for Blisland Parish at the Lower Church October the 9th 1753
To Majr William Hockaday for John Taylor’s family, 800
To Majr William Hockaday for Richard Gilman, 800
Court Orders reveal that there were other GILLIAMs living in York County by 1665. Namely, Ogdam who was a servant to James Besouth and Thomas who was transported and later served Capt. Thomas Beale. Thomas was judged to be 14 years of age in 1665.
Also likely living in Hampton Parish, York County prior to 1667 was a Mary GILLAM, mentioned in the Will of Michael Bartlett. It is possible that Mary GILLIAM is Michael's mother-in-law, since Michael's wife was also named Mary.
During the 1740’s a Joseph Gilliam appears in several Court suits
By 1800 a William GILLIAM is living in York. He appears on the Personal Property Rolls.
French Memorial Cemetery
Among the French Troops buried at Yorktown is Joseph Guillaume
Antoine La Fosse
William GILLIAM, age 50-60
[This William appears to be the William of the Chancery File, below. He is not found in the 1840 Census.]
James GILLIAM, age 30-40
Richard GILLIAM, age 30-40
[No GILLIAMs indexed]
GILLIAM, Mary E.
GILLIAM, Margaret E.
Anna Areker [Archer?] Chisman GILLIAM and William GILLIAM, plaintiffs
Thomas Chisman and Admr of Henry Shields, defendants
[Names mentioned Chisman, GILLIAM, McCandlish, and Shield.
In the Inventory of hte The Robert Anderson Papers in te Colonial Williamsburg Foundation Library, Special Collections, Folder 81. General Business Papers, 1844. Is a receipt dated 6 Mar 1844 which receipted account of Robert Anderson to William GILLIAM's estate. Also mentioned is a Thomas C. Chisman. It appears that the this William is the will above and that he has died.]
Library of Virginia. Chancery Suits.
Ogdam GILLAM was a servant to James Besouth
[James Besouth, a vestryman of Bruton Parish, left a will in York County dated 10 Nov 1677, recorded 24 Oct 1681]
Thomas Gwellin transported by Thomas Beale 1665 Court.
Thomas Gwillam servant of Capt. Thos. Beale judged to be 14 yrs. old
[Capt. Thomas Beale Jr. (1647-1679) married Anne, daughter of Gov. William Gooch]
In action of trespass between John Perrin Plt and John Taylor def came the plt by his atty & John Coulthard & Joseph Gilliam securities of the def by their atty and came a jury to with, Thomas Roberts, Merrit Moore, Edward Potter, Edward Baptist, John Hay, Thomas Charles, John Kirby, Ephraim Cocket, John Patrick, Mattw Hill, Bennet Tompkins, & Philip Dedman who say that the sdai def did promise & assume as the Plt agt him hath declared and they assess the damage of the Plt to 20 pd. The Plt to recover agt the def & securities his damage together with his costs.
Court Orders, ___, page 268
In the action of debt between John Coles Plt and William Wyatt def, the def still failing to appears the conditional judgment of the last court agt him & Joseph Gillum his security for 5 pd 6 sl 6 pn is confirmed.
Court Orders, ___, page 268
16 Apr 1743
That Joseph Gillum, Thomas May and John Morgan personally come before the court and each of them ackn himself indebted to our King George the Second for 10 pd to be levy’d severally on each of their goods & chattles, lands and tenements upon condition that if each of them do personally appear before the General court now sitting on the 4th day thereof and do then there give such evidence as he knoweth agt the said Nathaniel Morland & Matthew Hubard concerning the matters wherewith they stand charged and that they do not depart without leave of said court, then this recognizance to be void.
Truely entd attest Matt Hubard clerk
Court Orders, ___, page 183
In the action of trespass between John Perrin plt and John Taylor def, the def being arrested and failing to appears, ordered by the court that judgment be entere’d for the plt agt the def and John Coulthard & Joseph Gilliam his securities for 30 pd & costs unless the def shall appear & plead at the next court.
Court Orders, ___, page 248
In action of trepass between John Lewis Gent plt and Wm Wyatt def, the def failing to appear, considered by the court that judgment be ordered for the Plt agt the Def and John Parker & Joseph Gillum his securities for 50 pd & costs unless the Def shall appear & plead at the next court.
Court Orders, ___, page 289
In action of trepass between John Lewis Gent plt and Wm Wyatt def, the def failing to appear, considered by the court that the conditional judgment of the last court agt him and John Parker & Joseph Gillum his securities for 50 pd & costs be confirmed and ordered that a writ of inquiry of damages be executed.
Court Orders, ___, page 294
In the action of debt between Joseph Gilliam plt agt John James Hughlett def, the def by his atty prays and has leave to imparle til the next court and then to plead.
Court Orders, ___, page 442
In action of debt between Joseph Gilliam plt agt John James Hughlett def, dismissed being agreed by the parties
Court Orders, ___, page 446
In the case between William Nelson Esqr Plt agt Joseph Gilliam def, the def being arrested and not appearing, ordered that judgment be enter’d for the plt agt the def and Wm Wyatt who is returned security for the appearance of said def for what damages it shall appear the plt hath sustained, which damages are to be ascertained by a jury unless the def shall appear and plead at the next court.
Court Orders, ___, page 447
The case between William Nelson Esqr plt agt Joseph Gilliam def, the def not appearing, the order of the last court is confirmed and ordered that a writ of enquiry of damages be executed.
Court Orders, ___, page 456
In the case between William Nelson Esqr plt agt Joseph Gilliam def, came the plt by his atty and came a jury, to wit: Pinkethman Eaton, John Tenham, Thomas Pescod, John Woootten, Edward Baptist, John Harris, Walter Chapman, John Bond, William Powell, Samuel Spurr, Ephraim Cocket & Sheldon Goodwin, who say that the plt hat sustained damages by occasion of the def. . . [not copied]
Court Orders, ___, page 470
In the case between Joseph Gilliam plt agt Thomas Gooseley def, dismissed being agreed by the parties
Court Orders, ___, page 487
Thomson's Mercantile and Professional Directory, 1851
General Dealers in, Dry, Goods, Groceries, Hardware; &c.
Thomson's Mercantile and Professional Directory, 1851
12 Dec 1831
Various citizens of York County petition the General Assembly to take into consideration the plight of free black people who are not able to live independently and prosper in their society.
Tho. G. Tinsley
John H Hankin
Thos. B. Allen
Thos. H McWilliams
T C [?] Russell
J. W. Byrd
Benjn Hansford Junr
L T [?] Waller
James L Lawson
G Lane Corbin
Augustine M King
Richard Tenn is
J R Nottingham
George W Dewey[?]
Christopher Wheling [?]
Lewis Hogg Snr.
Ancestry.com. Virginia Genealogical Society Quarterly [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2002. Original data: The Virginia Genealogical Society. Virginia Genealogical Society Quarterly and Magazine of Virginia Genealogy.
Legislative Petitions: York County, 1805-1839, Nov 1998, Volume 36, Number 4
4 Mar 1797
Wm GILLIAM to Mary Moss
Camm, Thomas. Marriages in York County, 1794-1798. William and Mary College Quarterly Historical Magazine, Vol. 14, No. 4. (Apr., 1906), pp. 275-276.
15 Sep 1828
Married on Monday, Sept. 15, by Rev. Peter Ainslie, William GILLIAM, Jr., to Miss Lucy Servant Willis, third daughter of Matthew Willis, of York County.
American Beacon and Norfolk and Portsmouth Daily Advertiser, p. 3, c. 1, Saturday, September 20, 1828.
Cheesman, Thomas, Surgeon.
Affidavit: William GILLIAM.
Library of Virginia. Revolutionary War Bounty Warrants, reels 1-29.
22 Nov 1787
Letter. Williamsburg, Samuel Beall to John Hatley Norton, Winchester. Sorry for his misfortunes; must submit with fortitude; has been in Richmond; will attend to Dr. [James] Carter's account and Mrs. Dixon's; [Leighton]
Wood sent state of papers of Cary & West; requests accounts of Norton & Pickett; understands and excuses delay; has account of sales made by GILLIAM. 1 enclosure. "Williamsburg - Nov. 25" Stamp.
John Norton and Sons Papers, 1750 [1763-1798] 1902, 2,294 pieces. MS 36.3. Approximately one-third of the papers have been published: Frances Norton Mason, ed., John Norton & Sons Merchants of London and Virginia, Richmond, 1937. Microfilm (M-1485.1-8) and transcript (TR/22-23) copies available. Folder 188: 9 pieces
[John Norton (1719-1777) began his career in the mercantile business in Yorktown representing the firm of Flowerdewe and Norton. He married Courtenay Walker (d. 1780) in 1743. John Norton returned to England in the 1764. His son, John Hatley Norton (1745-1797) took over in Virginia for his father in the late 1760's. Correspondence and business papers of the firm of John Norton and Sons, merchants, of London and Virginia, including letters, bills, accounts, receipts, and bills of lading. The majority of the letters were written to John Norton (1719-1777), of London, or his son, John Hatley Norton (1745-1797), the firm's representative in Yorktown, Virginia, during the period 1766-1798.]
Patents, Headrights and Bounds
14 Apr 1643
Mr. William Hoccaday, 1000 acs. Yorke Co
near the head of Ware creek, NW by N upon a former devdt & NW by N towards Waraney Cr. Trans of 20 pers: Alexander Watson, Wm. Mackgahye, Andrew Sharpe, Jane Johnson, Randall , Isabell Grace, Mary Reeise, Tomasin Madero (or Maders) Mary Graham, James , Edward Hodge, Richard GILLMAN, Willm Moline, Fra Peppett, Richard Jones, Michaell Barrow, Richard Moore, Joane Rivers, Ja. Nicholson, Wm. Gowin. Renewed 20 Nov 1654,
Cavaliers and Pioneers, Volume I, page 257
Confederate Pension Rolls, Veterans and Widows
Act of 1918
GILLIAM, R. B., Soldier
Library of Virginia, Confederate Pension Rolls, Veterans and Widows
18 Jan 1840
Certification of William GILLIAM concerning the tobacco lost by Mrs. Peyton Southall in the Yorktown fire.
Hopkins, Garland Evans. A List of Petitions from York County to the General Assembly from 1776 to 1861, William and Mary College Quarterly Historical Magazine, 2nd Ser., Vol. 18, No. 1. (Jan., 1938), pp. 119-124.
James Burwell also had at least two white servants, Ann Gwilliam and a tailor named John Glendenning
York County Deeds, Orders, Wills 2:329; 4:70, 141, 209, 372; 5:47, 88, 139; 6:28, 67, 299, 352, 479; :187; 8:261; 10:483; 9:116; 10:274-277, 280; 14:60-64; 15:334, 421.
McCartney, Martha W. A Study of the Africans and African Americans on Jamestown Island and at Green Spring, 1619-1803
28 May 1801
Thirty Dollars Reward. Run away on the 25th inst. a negro man named Sam, about 5 feet 8 or 9 inches high, of a dark complexion, speaks inwardly, stout and well made; he says he is about 38 years of age; I think he is about 45; he had two new oznabrigs shirts and one of trowsers, one dark brown pair of trowsers, a coarse light great coat. I bought him of Robert Presson of York county, about 13th of April last, and a William GILLIAM, both of York county; they informed me was the property of Presson; it is likely he is gone to York county, or to Richmond, where he tells me he has been hired about two years to a Mr. Roberts or Robertson. Any person bringing him to me shall receive the above reward, with all reasonable expences. William Colley, near Fort Norfolk. May 28.
Norfolk Herald (Willett and O'Connor), Norfolk, May 28, 1801.
1800 Personal Property
William GILLIAM, 1 white male, 3 black males, 1 horses
Binns Genealogy. 1790/1800 County Tax Lists of Virginia.
Wills, Estates, etc.
Estate of Col. Xpher Calthorp, decd, produced by Anne Calthorp, Adm'x.
Appraised by the order of court of 10 Sep last by Mr. Armiger Wade and Mr. John Hunt, and by Mr. John Hay and Mr. Michael Taverner, appointed in place of Mr. Anthony Rooksby, being very sick, and Mr. Thomas Mitchell being from home.
Sworn by Capt. William Hay, 13 Oct 1662
Cattle: 10,820 lbs tob.
Servants: Humphrey Freeman, 6 years and the vantage to serve
Thomas Ragg, same time to serve
John Hansford, 7 years & better to serve
William Orro, 6 years & upwards to serve
Thomas Hazleton, 4 years to serve (A runaway)
John GILLIAN, 6 years & upwards to serve
Margaret Fisher, 3 years to serve at Xmas next
John VandNurin, sold
Walter Oliver, sold
Total 11,300 lbs tob
[An Ambrose Calthrop of St. Dunstan's in the West, gent, aged 33, deposes 4 March, 1635-6, that he came passenger from Virginia in the John and Dorothy. He further deposes 16 May, 1636, that on the 11th of January last he had in the ship Constance, then and now delayed at Ilfracombe in her voyage to Virginia, four servants, namely, William GILLAM, John Elwoode, Thomas Hudson and William Hulett, of whom Hulett and Hudson have since run.]
York County Will Book ___, page ___
6 May 1667
Will of Michael Bartlett
To son Michael. Wife Mary. Dau. Diana. Son-in-law Alexander Moore who married dau. Elizabeth.
"The cattle I have of Mary GILLAM, dec'd, late of the same parish, to be divided into 3 equal parts, with 1/3 to Michael, 1/3 to Diana, & 1/3 to child or children of Elizabeth."
Rec: 24 Mar 1670
York County Will Book ___, page ___
- American Beacon and Norfolk and Portsmouth Daily Advertiser, p. 3, c. 1, Saturday, September 20, 1828.
- Ancestry.com. Federal Census records.
- Binns Genealogy. 1790/1800 County Tax Lists of Virginia.
- Camm, Thomas. Marriages in York County, 1794-1798. William and Mary College Quarterly Historical Magazine, Vol. 14, No. 4. (Apr., 1906), pp. 275-276.
- Cavaliers and Pioneers, Volume I, page 257
- Hopkins, Garland Evans. A List of Petitions from York County to the General Assembly from 1776 to 1861, William and Mary College Quarterly Historical Magazine, 2nd Ser., Vol. 18, No. 1. (Jan., 1938), pp. 119-124.
- McCartney, Martha W. A Study of the Africans and African Americans on Jamestown Island and at Green Spring, 1619-1803
- Norfolk Herald (Willett and O'Connor), Norfolk, May 28, 1801.
- Revolutionary War Bounty Warrants, reels 1-29.
- Thomson's Mercantile and Professional Directory, 1851
- Library of Virginia. Chancery Suits.
- Library of Virginia, Confederate Pension Rolls, Veterans and Widows
- Library of Virginia. Revolutionary War Bounty Warrants, reels 1-29.
- Weisiger, Benjamin B. York County, Virginia Records 1659-1662. Athens, GA: Iberian, 1987.
- Weisiger, Benjamin B. York County, Virginia Records 1665-1672. Athens, GA: Iberian, 1987.
- Weisiger, Benjamin B. York County, Virginia Records 1672-1676. Athens, GA: Iberian, 1987.
- York County, VA, Will Books.