Solomon Jennings
& Sarah Fender

Solomon Jennings, son of William M. JENNINGS & Martha JOINES, was born 1817 in Wilkes or Ashe Co., NC, and died Jan. 17, 1895, in Grayson Co., VA. He married (1) Sarah Fender, daughter of John FENDER & Martha TOLIVER. She was born Dec. 8, 1818, in Ashe Co., NC, and died June 10, 1860, in Grayson Co., VA, of "dropsy" at the age of 36. He married (2) Elizabeth, last name unknown, between 1860-1870. She was born abt. 1825 in Virginia and died after 1895. Solomon Jennings is believed to be buried in a family cemetery on his land in Peach Bottom, Grayson Co., VA, but there are no legible stones in the cemetery.

Children of Solomon Jennings & Sarah Fender:

  1. +Frances Jennings, b. Feb. 19, 1836, Ashe Co., NC; d. Dec. 11, 1910, Alleghany Co., NC; m. Haywood COX, son of Samuel COX & Rebecca OSBORNE, Dec. 25, 1852, Ashe Co., NC (b. Jan. 10, 1814; d. Jan. 11, 1892). Haywood Cox is buried at the Little Sam Cox Cemetery on Rte. 629, Baywood, Grayson Co., VA. It is possible that Frances is also buried there, but her gravestone has not been found.
  2. +Martha "Patty" Jennings, b. Dec. 31, 1838, Ashe Co., NC; d. July 22, 1935, Alleghany Co., NC; m. Richard "Dixie" CHEEK, son of Chesley CHEEK & Phebe WOODRUFF, Jan. 28, 1857, Ashe Co, NC (b. Sept. 8, 1834; d. July 19, 1913); bur. Pleasant Home Union Baptist Church, Alleghany Co., NC.
  3. John Jennings, b. abt. 1840; probably died young. Listed in the 1850 census (age 10), then no further records.
  4. James Jesse Jennings, b. July 1842, Ashe Co., NC; d. May 1, 1919, Tazewell Co., VA; m. Sarah ROBINSON, Jan. 23, 1866, Grayson Co., VA (b. Aug. 1842 in TN; d. aft. 1920). Children: Fleming Jennings (1867), John M. Jennings (1868), Elizabeth Jennings (c.1871), Robert L. Jennings (1872), Crockett F. Jennings (c.1875), J. Charles Jennings (c.1878).
  5. Luke Jennings, b. abt. 1842, Ashe Co., NC; d. aft. 1880; m. Jane, last name unk., abt. 1861 (b. abt. 1845; d. aft. 1880). Listed in the 1880 census of Grayson Co., VA, then no further records. Children: Isom Jennings (c.1862), Jesse Jennings (c.1865).
  6. Susan "Sukey" Jennings, b. abt. 1844, Ashe Co., NC.
  7. William Fender Jennings, b. Nov. 23, 1850, Ashe Co., NC; d. Apr. 3, 1928, Queenamo, Franklin Co., KS; m. Mary Jane "Jennie" HANKS, daughter of Edward "Ned" HANKS & Eliza "Layle" PAYNE, Nov. 4, 1871, Alleghany Co., NC (b. July 1852; d. Feb. 25, 1932). Living in Otoe Co., NE, in 1900. Jennie was living in Nemaha Co., NE, in 1910, and is listed as a widow (which appears to be incorrect). Children: Edward Jennings (c.1876), Leonidas Jennings (c.1880), Fannie Jennings (1882), Florence Jennings (1887), Frank Jennings (1888), Grace Jennings (1894).
  8. Allen Jennings, b. May 22, 1853, Grayson Co., VA; d. Sept. 10, 1910, Wythe Co., VA; m. Martha Ann "Mattie" POOL, Oct. 31, 1872, Grayson Co., VA (b. July 18, 1855; d. Oct. 28, 1921). Buried at the Rock Creek Primitive Baptist Church, Rte. 685, Grayson Co., VA. Children: Charlie Magnia Jennings (f) (1873), Charles Matthew Jennings (1874), Rose Alberta Jennings (1877).
  9. Solomon F. Jennings, b. June 8, 1855, Grayson Co., VA; d. 1946, Harford Co., MD; m. Catherine "Kate" EDWARDS, daughter of Isom C. EDWARDS & Linea "Linnie" HACKLER, June 28, 1879, Alleghany Co., NC (b. Nov. 1862; d. 1954); bur. Mount Zion United Methodist Church, Harford Co., MD. Children: Bettie L. Jennings (1880), Frederick I. Jennings (1882).


Solomon Jennings was born about 1817 in Wilkes Co., NC.  His father, William M. Jennings (1782-1856), relocated from the Mulberry Creek area to the Traphill section of Wilkes County sometime in the early to mid-1800's.  Traphill is a community in the Blue Ridge near the border of Alleghany (formerly Ashe) County.  Due to uncertainty over the location of the county line during the 19th century, families in Traphill are often found in records in both Ashe and Wilkes County.

Solomon Jennings married Sarah Fender, daughter of John Fender and Martha Toliver, about 1834 based on the ages of their children.  Solomon's older brother Thornton Jennings was married to Sarah's sister Charity Fender.  By 1850, Solomon and his family had moved to Grayson County, VA, where they settled in the Peach Bottom area south of the New River.  Peach Bottom is across the state line from the Vox community in Alleghany County, North Carolina, home of the Cheek family.    View a Google map.

Solomon's connection to his father William Jennings is proven by the records of William Jennings' estate, which was probated in Ashe County, NC, in 1856. (NC Archives File No. CR.006.508.16).  Solomon Jennings submitted a receipt dated Apr. 1, 1859, for his share of the proceeds of the sale of William Jennings's land.

Sarah (Fender) Jennings died of illness in 1860 at the age of only 36.  She was the mother of 9 children.  Solomon remarried but did not have any more children.  He lived to the age of 78.  Sarah and Solomon Jennings are said to be buried in an old cemetery on their former land in the Peach Bottom area of Grayson Co., VA, but their gravestones are no longer legible.

Solomon Jennings Land in Grayson Co., VA

Solomon Jennings' Land
Peach Bottom, Grayson County, VA
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1840 Census, Ashe Co., NC (p.10): SOL JENNINGS
2 w/m under 5 1 w/f 20-29
  1 w/m 20-29

Feb. 2, 1846. Grayson Co., VA. Archibald EDWARDS of Grayson Co., VA, to Solomon JENNINGS of Ashe Co., NC, 263 acres on New River and Crab Creek, it being the land purchased by William EDWARDS from Stephen HALE, beg. on the NC line, adj. David COX & Henry WOODRUFF, for $500. Signed: Archibald EDWARDS. Wits: Morgan BRYANT, W.H. THOMPSON. Proved Oct. 29, 1846. (Grayson Co., VA, DB 9, pp.415-415.)

1850 Census, Grayson Co., VA, 19th Dist., p.229:
SOLOMON JENNINGS, 33, farmer, $1,050, b. in NC
-- Sally, 30, NC
-- Frances, 13, NC
-- Patsy, 12, NC
-- John, 10, NC
-- Luke, 8, NC
-- Suke, 6, NC
-- William, 9 mos., NC

Apr. 1, 1859. Solomon Jennings signed a receipt for his share of the proceeds of the sale of William Jennings' land in Ashe Co., NC. (Estate of William Jenings, NC Archives File No. CR.006.508.16).

1860 Census: not listed

June 10, 1860. The Grayson Co., VA, Death Register states that Sarah Jennings wife of Solomon Jennings died of "dropsy" (fluid retention, i.e., probably congestive heart failure) on June 10, 1860, at the age of 39 years 6 months. (Source: New River Notes)

From Karl Jaeckel, Denver, CO: "I have a letter written from Sarah (Edwards) Choate to her daughter Nancy dated August 24, 1860 in which she mentions your ancestor Sarah (Fender) Jennings. She wrote,

"Sally Jennings is dead. She died the 10th of June. She lay sick a long time with the dropsy. She died exhorting. She … talked to her folks a good while before she died, and at the last she told Solomon that she wanted to talk a right chance, but she was too weak, and he raised her up, and in a few minutes her voice come to her an she could a been heard fifty or a hundred yards. Would tell you all about her talk, but it is too tedious. She told them she wanted Douglass Carr and Lonely (?) to preach her funeral. It is to be preached at Solomon's the third Sunday in September."

Apr. 22, 1861, Grayson Co., VA, Court Minutes: "Ordered that Warner HALE be and he is hereby appointed overseer of the precinct of road from the Sigger Ford to the ford of the River near Warner HALE's fish trap in the room of Fielden CARR, resigned and with the following hands he keep the same in legal repair to wit: Fielden CARR, F. HALE, David HALE, & Solomon JENNINGS."

1863 Tax List, Grayson Co., VA: Solomon JENNINGS, 263 acres, New River & Crab Creek, 8 miles east of courthouse, total value $1,578, tax $15.78.

Civil War: Solomon Jennings served in Co. C, 45th VA infantry regiment. He enlisted on May 29, 1861, in Wytheville, VA. On leave Dec. 1861. Detailed as a teamster May 24, 1862, then no further records.

1870 Census, Grayson Co., VA, Elk Creek Twp., p.176 (HH#606):
SOLOMON JENNINGS, 55, farmer, $2000, $785, NC
-- Elizabeth, 45, keeping house, VA
-- William, 19, farm laborer, VA
-- Ellen [Allen?], 17, VA
-- Solomon, 15, farm laborer, VA
WILSON, Martha, 17, domestic, VA
MATTHEWS, Mary, 12, domestic, VA

Sept. 11, 1873. Alleghany Co., NC. Jasper BILLINGS to William EDWARDS, for $96 and in consideration of assistance in excavating & assaying, 6/16 of minerals in the digins known as the Jasper BILLINGS mine situated on 30 acres on Little River, beg. mouth of the branch between T.C. DOUGLAS & Solomon FENDER, same branch being the line between Solomon FENDER & Orfa ANDERS, up said branch to the old ford where the mill path crosses leading from where Wm. H. JOINES now lives to the mills on Little River where Solomon JENNINGS now lives, the ford crossing the branch near a solid ledge of rocks, then to the State Road, a hollow in a sandy flat, & the Little River. Signed: Jasper BILLINGS. Wit: W.C. FIELDS. Proved Sept. 11, 1873 (ack'd). (Alleghany DB 2:81.)

Dec. 28, 1874. Alleghany Co., NC. Solomon FENDER & wife Charity to Thomas W. CARTER, J.S. CHOAT & Solomon JENNINGS, [mortgage deed], tract of land on Peach Bottom Mountain adj. Haywood EDWARDS, Levi WILLEY, & Jesse TOLIVER. To secure $200 debt. Signed: Solomon FENDER. Proved Dec. 28, 1874 (ack'd). Reg. June 1, 1875. (Alleghany DB 3:22.)

1880 Census, Grayson Co., VA, Dist. #36, Elk Creek (HH#40):
-- Elizabeth, 55, wife, VA NC VA
MITCHELL, Peter, 20 B, servant, NC NC NC
GRUGIN, Ellin, 19, servant, NC NC NC

Nov. 2, 1880. Solomon JENNINGS, Sr., & wife Elizabeth to Sol. F. JENNINGS, 50 acres on Crab Creek. (Grayson DB 18:68.)

1888-1889, Chataigne's Virginia Gazetteer and Classified Business Directory for Grayson County, VA, lists Solomon JENNINGS and Solomon JENNINGS, Jr., as principal farmers in the Peach Bottom area. (Source: New River Notes)

1890 Land Tax List, Grayson Co., VA: Solomon JENNINGS, 187 acres, New River, 7 miles south of the courthouse, value $3/acre, value of buildings $100, total value $561. (Source: New River Notes)

Jan. 17, 1895. Will of Solomon JENNINGS dated Jan. 17, 1895, makes specific bequests to wife Elizabeth JENNINGS, sons Luke JENNINGS, William JENNINGS, & Jesse JENNINGS, and daughters Frances COX & Martha CHEEK. Directs that remainder of estate after payment of debts be "applied to those who have received none of my estate" [implying there are other heirs not named]. Execs: trusted friends R.S. CARSON & E.F. COX. Signed: Solomon JENNINGS. Wits: J.C. SHAW, R.L. COX. Proved Mar. 3, 1896. (Grayson Co., VA, WB 8, pp.14-16.)

Will of Solomon Jennings of Grayson Co., VA

Dated Jan. 17, 1895, Proved Mar. 3, 1896
Grayson Co., VA, Will Book 8, pp.14-16
Digital image

In the name of God amen. I SOLOMON JENNINGS SR. of the county of Grayson and State of Virginia being of sound mind and disposing memory and knowing the uncertainty of life and the certainty of death do make constitute & ordain this my last Will and Testament as follows

1st I will my soul to the God who gave it

2nd I will to my beloved wife ELIZABETH JENNINGS who has been so faithful and kind to me all of the household and kitchen furniture that she brought here after our marriage together with her sewing machine One horse briddle and saddle of her own choice two cows of her own choice Four hundred dollars $400.00 in cash the sum being the amount that she paid unto the lands of LUKE JENNINGS my son he having received his full portion of my estate

3rd I also will that my farming tools remain on the farm and go in the way that the lands are disposed of in this will

4th I will that my beloved wife have the use of and the full controll and all the proceeds of my real estate during her natural life or widowhood

5th At the death of my wife ELIZABETH JENNINGS or in case she should marry again then I will that my lands be sold and the proceeds disposed of as follows. To my daughter FRANCIS COX I will four hundred dollar $400.00 To my daughter MARTHA CHEEK four hundred dollars $400.00 To my son WILLIAM JENNINGS one hundred dollars $100.00

I have given my son JESSIE JENNING six hundred and thirteen dollars in lands and I desire that my other children be made equal with him before he receives any more of my estate I having given my son heretofore four hundred dollars in in land except WM. JENNINGS who received money

6th I will that the remainder of my personal property not heretofore disposed of in this will be sold by my executors and the proceeds applyed to the payment of my just debts and funeral expenses and the remainder applied to those who have received none of my estate and in case my personal property should fail to pay my debts and liabilities then and in that event I do hereby empower my executors to sell enough land off the South East end of my farm to pay off said debts if any.

7th I do hereby constitute and appoint my trusted friends R.S. CARSON and E.F. COX Executors of this my last Will and Testament In witness thereof I SOLOMON JENNINGS SEN. to this my last will and testament have hereunto set my hand & seal this the seventeenth day of January 1895.


Signed sealed and declared by SOLOMON JENNINGS as and for his last will and testament in the presence of us who at his request and in his presence and in the presence of each other have subscribed our names hereunto as witness thereof.