Randolph Cheek
of Warren County, NC

Randolph Cheek, son of William CHEEK & Sarah BLAKE, was probably born between 1755-1765 in Granville or Bute Co., NC, and may have died 1807 in Smith Co., TN (but sources conflict). He married unknown Green, probably between 1775-1785 in Warren Co., NC. Some sources identify her as Nancy GREEN, daughter of William GREEN & Nancy TURNER. After Randolph's death, Nancy reportedly remarried to Stephen FARMER of Smith Co., TN.

Census records indicate that Randolph Cheek had 2 sons and 5 daughters born before 1800. His children may have included:

  1. William H. Cheek, b. 1775-1794. Listed as a Lt. in the 41st Reg't of Smith Co., TN, June 14, 1813. Married the widow of James BRADFORD, bef. 1817 (Inv. of the estate of James BRADFORD was filed July 25, 1817, by "William H. CHEEK, Adm. for Elizabeth C. CHEEK, his wife" - Smith Co., TN, WB D, p.124.)  He appears in the 1820 census of Smith Co., TN (age 26-45), then no further records.
  2. James Cheek, b. 1780-1790. Listed in the census of Smith Co., TN, in 1820 (age 26-45) and 1830 (age 40-49). James CHEEK m. Elizabeth CHAPMAN, Feb. 6, 1832, in Smith Co. TN. His name appears on a list of soldiers from Smith Co., TN, who served in the Seminole War during July 1836. Subsequently must have died or left the area. It is possible that his widow is the Elizabeth CHEEK who appears on the 1837 Tax List of Smith Co., TN.
  3. Hixy (Hixley, Hixie) Cheek, reportedly b. Aug. 15, 1788, Warren Co., NC; d. bef. 1879, Grimes Co., TX; m. Matthew DUKE, son of Matthew DUKE, Sr., & Elizabeth CLANTON, May 13, 1807, in Smith Co., TN. He was b. abt. 1785 in Warren Co., NC; d. Apr. 19, 1849, Itawamba Co., MS. (Verification needed for dates.) Sometime in the 1840's, Matthew & Hixy Duke moved their family from Tennessee to Alabama and then Mississippi. Hixey DUKE and several children & grandchildren are listed in the 1850 census of Chickasaw Co., MS, Eastern Div., p.345. Children: Littleton Clanton Duke (1808), Emily edwards Duke, Harriett Green Duke (1811), Alfred Madison Duke (1815), Matthew Jackson Duke (1815), Malvina Dunseath Duke (1817), Mariah Louisa Duke (1819), Elizabeth Henry Duke (1824), robert Randolph Duke (1824), David Moore Duke (1826), Hixie francis Duke (1831), Nancy Turner Duke (1833).  **Additional evidence of Hixy's connection to Randolph Cheek comes from a later generation of the family. Hixy & Matthew DUKE's daughter Emily Edwards DUKE m. Richard BASS of Wilson Co., TN, & they had a son named Robert C. BASS, who had a son named Randolph Cheek BASS.
  4. Martha Cheek, b. abt. 1788 in Warren Co., NC; d. 1860, Smith Co., TN; m. (1) Isaac BETTY, abt. 1802 (b. 1770's; d. 1821, Smith Co., TN); (2) Henderson PALMER. Will of Isaac BETTY, dated Sept. 4, 1818, proved Feb. 1821, names wife Martha A. BETTY, "our children" (not identified), "the place I bought of Samuel VARNER." Exec: wife. Wits: William INGE, William HYLTON, Stephan ROBINSON, Jr., Squire WOOD. (Smith WB 1820-23, pp. 89, 128.) Guardianship account filed in 1831 by H.G. PALMER identifies children of Isaac BETTY as Isaac Jr., Alfred M., Robert C., & Araminty. (Smith WB 1823-33, p.195.)  On Dec. 24, 1836, Martha was granted a divorce from Henderson PALMER who had been absent from the county for more than 2 years. (Smith Co., TN, Circuit Court Minutes.)  Children: William Randolph Betty (1805), Robert Carroll Betty (1815), Isaac Betty Jr., Alfred Meeken Betty (1813), Araminta Betty, Franklin Palmer (1828).
  5. Mary "Polly" Cheek, b. Feb. 25, 1797 in NC; d. July 27, 1890, Smith Co., TN; m. David M. BRADFORD (b. Mar. 5, 1805; d. Mar. 8, 1873); bur. Bradford Cemetery, New Middleton, Smith Co., TN. Children: James Bradford (c.1824), William Cheek Bradford (c.1827), Amanda Bradford (c.1829), David M. Bradford (1831), Robert Bradford (c.1836), Rebecca Bradford (c.1837), Mary Bradford (c.1839), Elizabeth Bradford (c.1839).
  6. Rebecca Cheek, m. Robert PHILLIPS.
  7. Elizabeth "Betsy" Cheek, m. Robert DAVIS. Children: Alfred Davis, Elizabeth Davis, Martha Davis, Green Davis.
  8. Mariah Cheek, m. unk. DEW. Children: Nancy Dew, William Dew, Sam Dew, Jack Dew.


Randolph Cheek of Warren County, NC, was probably born between 1755 and 1765, based on census records.  There is an undated marriage bond from Warren County, NC, documenting the marriage of Randolph CHEEK and Miss GREEN (first name not given), bondsman Henry ALSTON.  Some sources give her first name as Nancy, daughter of William GREEN & Nancy TURNER of Warren Co., NC.  (See History of Smith County Tennessee (1986), p.445.)  Randolph Cheek reportedly died in 1807 in Smith County, TN.  There are some records of individuals with the Cheek surname in Smith County, TN, but nothing directly pertaining to Randolph that I have been able to locate.  It is possible that the connection was established using land, court or estate records which I have not researched.  More work is needed!

Some conflicting sources identify him as Randolph Cheek of Cape Girardeau County, MO.  However, I do not believe this claim is correct.  Randolph Cheek of Cape Gir. County was most likely born between 1780-1790, and in any event no earlier than 1774 (his age is given as 40-49 years old in the 1830 census, 50-59 in 1840, 69 in 1850, 84 in 1860, and 96 in 1870).  By contrast, Randolph Cheek of Warren County, NC, first appears on a tax list in 1786, which indicates he was born no later than 1766, assuming he was at least 20 years old in 1786 in order to be a property owner on the tax list.  Much of the confusion is probably the fault of a newspaper article published in the Liberty Tribune, Clay County, MO, on Jan. 17, 1873, which claimed that Randolph Cheek, an "old citizen" originally from North Carolina was (then) 104 years old and his wife 99.  This would make Randolph old enough to be the Randolph from Warren County, NC, but the newspaper article clearly exaggerated.  Assuming that Randolph of Cape Gir. County was in fact 69 years old in 1850 when the census was taken (and this age would be consistent with the 1830-1840 census records), he was probably born about 1781, making him 92 (not 104) in 1873.  This was still an impressive age, but means he was born at least 15 years later than the Randolph Cheek from Warren Co., NC.

Records in Warren Co., NC

1786 State Census, Warren Co., NC, Weather's Dist., p.4: RANDOLPH CHEEK

1790 Census, Warren Co., NC, p.76: RANDOLPH CHEEK
1 white males over 16
4 white females
4 slaves

May-Nov. 1790. Account of the estate of Joseph GREEN bequeathed by the dec'd in his will to his unmarried children to be divided among said children, May Ct. 1790, Aug. Ct. 1790 & Nov Ct. 1790. Record shows Randolph CHEEK & wife and Thomas BURROW & wife brought suit against the executors Joseph GREEN & John DUKE. (Warren Wills & Estates.)

Jan-Feb. 1792. Randolph CHEEK, John CHEEK, and others purchased property from the estate of William POWELL, dec'd. (Warren WB 6, p.74; Jan. 6 & 7, 1792; Feb. court, 1792.)

June 9, 1792. Power of Attorney from Matthias GOODRICH of Mecklenburg Co., NC, late a soldier in the 3rd Reg't for 2 ½ years under Capt. Jacob TURNER, who appointed Randolph CHEEK of Warren Co., NC, attorney, to ask for the pay due the said GOODRICH for said military service. Wits: Geo. GRAHAM, Jas. TAGERT. ("Revolutionary War Service Records and Final Settlements, 1776-1792," NCGSJ 9:225.)

Note: Matthew Goodrich was married to Randolph Cheek's sister Phoebe. They moved to Mecklenburg Co., NC, eventually leasing land in the Catawba Indian Reservation across the state line in York Dist., SC.

Aug. 1792. Randolph CHEEK appointed guardian of Nancy, Betsy, and Salley LONG, orphans of Drury LONG, dec'd. (Warren Court Minutes.)

Aug. 1792. Estate of Lewis GOODRICK [GOODRICH], dec'd. Bond for £200 from Randolph CHEEK as Administrator to William JOHNSON, Ch. County Court. Security: Berriman BILBRO. (Warren WB 6, p.128; Aug. 27, 1792; Aug. court, 1792.)

1792 Tax List, Warren Co., NC, Capt. Cheek's Dist.: RANDOLPH CHEEK, 400 acres, 3 slaves

Mar. 2, 1797. John GRAY, 16 yrs. old, apprenticed to Randle CHEEK by WM. JOHNSON, J.P. & to be instructed in art & Calling of a planter, etc. (Warren WB 9, p.69.)

Oct. 14, 1797. Randolph CHEEK is named in his father William CHEEK's will, proved Feb. 1800. Randolph received 400 acres of land "whereon he now lives" and two slaves, Arthur and Edy. (Warren WB 10, p.213.)

Aug. 27, 1799. Randolph CHEEK was security for Ann HUDSON, Admrx. of the estate of Henry HUDSON, dec'd.; bond for £500 to William JOHNSON, Ch. County Court. (Warren WB 10, p.140.)

Nov. 1799. Account of sale of estate of Henry HUDSON, dec'd., by Ann HUDSON, Admrx. Names: Randolph (Randal) CHEEK, Epps JONES, John CAPPS, Ann HUDSON. (Warren WB 10, p.186; Nov. 1, 1799; Nov. Court 1799.)

Dec. 1799. Randl. CHEEK purchased property from the estate of William GREEN. (Warren WB, p.256; Dec. 9-10, 1799; Feb. Court, 1800.)

1800 Census, Warren Co., NC, p.753: RANDOLPH CHEEK
2 w/m under 103 w/f under 10
1 w/m 16-252 w/f 10-15
1 w/m 26-451 w/f 26-45
5 slaves 

Nov. 26, 1802. Randolph CHEEK was security for Henry JONES, Admin'r of the estate of Agnes JONES, dec'd. Administrator's bond for £200 to Gov. Benjamin WILLIAMS. (Warren WB 12, p.1)

Nov. 26, 1802. Randolph CHEEK and William PERSON were security for Ahab W. TAYLOR Guardian to Durham HAIL, John HAIL & Gaitwood HAIL, minor orphans. Bond for £4,000 to William JOHNSON, Thomas CHRISTMASS & Daniel VALX, Justices of the County Court of Pleas & Quarter Sessions. (Warren WB 11, p.334.)

Nov. 27, 1802. Randolph CHEEK and William PERSON were security for Ahab W. TAYLOR Guardian to Thomas FAIL, minor orphan. Bond for £1,000 to Wiliam JOHNSON, Thos. CHRISTMASS & Daniel VALX, Justices of the County Court of Pleas & Quarter Sessions. (Warren WB 11, p.337.)

Feb. 1803. Randolph CHEEK acknowledged a debt to Robert T. CHEEK. Also, James ALSTON and Randolph CHEEK proved a deed from William CAPPS to John MACLIN. (Warren Court Minutes.)

Aug. 1803. Court ordered that John MACLIN and Randolph CHEEK examine the accounts of Dudley CLANTON as Admin'r of William ROWLAND and receipts. (Warren Court Minutes.)

Aug. 1804. Randolph CHEEK, B. NICHOLSON, and Wm. BALTHROP returned accounting of estate sale of Samuel BELL, dec.'d. (Warren WB 12, p.259.)

Nov. 1804. Turner MCINVALE proved his attendance as a witness for Randolph CHEEK against Robert T. CHEEK 4 days and 82 miles. (Warren Court Minutes.)

Nov. 8, 1804. Randolph CHEEK purchased property from the estate of William CHRISTMAS, dec'd. Account recorded Feb. 1805. (Warren WB 13, p.26; see also WB 14, p.16.)

Feb. 1805. Honorias POWELL posted a bond to qualify as constable, with Randolph CHEEK as his security. (Warren Court Minutes.)

Sept.-Dec. 1805. Randolph CHEEK purchased property from the estate of Johsua CAPPS, dec'd. (Warren WB 13, p.265; Sept. 13, 1805, Dec. 13, 1805, May court 1806.)

Dec. 4, 1805. Randal CHEEK and others purchased property from the estate of James ALSTON, dec'd. (Warren WB 13, p.229; see also Warren WB 14, p.119; Feb. court 1806.)

Smith County, TN

So far I have been unable to verify much info about Randolph CHEEK in Smith Co., TN, or any evidence that he actually moved there. However, Randolph Cheek did not leave a will in Warren Co., NC, which suggests he had moved away prior to his death. The Cheeks were a wealthy family in Warren County, and there would have to be some record of Randolph's estate.

Randolph's widow Nancy reportedly married Stephen FARMER abt. 1810 in Smith Co., TN.

Aug. 20, 1816, Nancy FARMER appointed Matthew DUKE as her attorney as administratrix of Stephen FARMER, dec'd. (Smith Co., TN, Book 14, p.17.)  If Nancy was indeed the widow of Randolph Cheek, then Matthew Duke (who m. Hixy Cheek) would be her son-in-law. The Duke family was originally from Warren Co., NC, and appear to have lived in the Fishing Creek area near the Cheek family.