William Bridgman

My 3rd great grandfather, William Bridgman, was born about 1782, in Henrico County, Virginia.    He was the son of Franklin Bridgman and his first wife (name unknown).    (Note: We believe William's full name was William Franklin, but have been unable to prove this idea.) 

Prior to April 15, 1793, William's family moved to Wythe County, Virginia.

William was counted as a tithable with his father Franklin on the 1803 and 1804 Wythe County personal property tax lists.    

William married my 3rd great grandmother, Mariam Brown, in 1805, in Wythe County.    The marriage was not recorded, however, until May 11, 1807, at which time the preacher turned in licenses for about 20 marriages he had performed.    

Mariam Brown was born about 1785, probably in Virginia.    She was the daughter of Isaac Brown and Mary "Polly" (last name unknown).    Mariam's sister, Jane Brown, married William's younger half-brother, Hezekiah Bridgman.   

         William Bridgman was first listed in his own right on the 1806 Wythe County, Virginia personal property tax list.     

William and Mariam appear on the 1810 Wythe County, Virginia, census.    The census shows William, a male 26-44 (b. 1766-1784); one female 16-25 (b. 1785-1794); and three females under the age of 10 (b. 1800-1810).    

(Note: We at first believed that William moved his family to Campbell County, Tennessee about 1814.   We based that belief on the fact that each of his children, beginning with his son William Calvin Bridgman, who was born about 1815/1816, stated on the 1850 and following censuses that they were born in Tennessee.    With the Wythe County, Virginia tax information we have since obtained, we know that William lived in Wythe County until about 1820.)  

William appeared on the Wythe County personal property tax list each year from 1806 through 1819, with the exception of 1811.

     We believe William moved his family to Tennessee in 1820, missing both the 1820 Wythe County, Virginia census and the 1820 Campbell County, Tennessee census.  

   At this time, the earliest actual record we have of William in Campbell County, Tennessee is September 16, 1826, when his eldest daughter married. 

Mariam's father died in Wythe County, Virginia, about July 1828.    Mariam was named in her father, Isaac Brown's will to receive one dollar.   

On August 3, 1829, William purchased a tract of land in Campbell County for one hundred, sixty dollars and fifty cents.

The 1830 Campbell County, Tennessee, census shows William's family as one male 40-50 years; one female 40-50 years; one female 20-30 years; two males 15-20 years; one female 15-20; three males 10-15; two females 10-15; one male 5-10; one female 5-10; two males under 5; and one female under 5 years.

Mariam's mother died in Wythe County, Virginia, about April 1835.     Mariam was named in her father, Mary "Polly" Brown's will to receive one dollar.

William's name appears often in the Campbell County court records.     He served several appointed terms as juror in the Circuit Court of the county.    In 1838, William was appointed inspector of elections in the 4th District of Campbell County.     William was first and foremost, however, a farmer.

The 1840 Campbell County census shows William's family as one male 60-70; one female 50-60; two males 15-20; two males 10-15; and two females 10-15 years.

William Bridgman died in Campbell County in July 1840.     He was alive at the time of the census taken in June, but had died before August 3.    William died intestate, leaving no will.  


Campbell County Minutes of Court of Pleas & Quarter Sessions
pgs. 72-74 

State of Tennessee
To Sampson David                           


Whereas it hath been representated unto us in our County Court held for the County of Campbell, at the court house in Jacksboro, on the first Monday of August 1840 that William Bridgman, late of said County, had died intestate, having whilst living and at the time of his death goods and chattles and credits, the ordering and granting administration whereof doth appartain unto us and we being desirous that the said goods and chattles rights and credits may be well and faithfully administered, do grant unto you the said Sampson David full power by these presents well and truly to collect and to take into your possession all and singular the goods and chattles, rights and credits which were of the said William Bridgman, deceased at the time of his death, wheresoever the same may be found, hereby requiring you to make or cause to be made and returned into our said court within 90 days a true and perfect inventory of said goods and chattles, rights and credits, and also to render a true and clear account of said administration when thereto required.    Witness William Carey, of said Court, at office in Jacksborough the first Monday of August 1840.

William Carey, Clk.              Monday the 3rd August 1840


On September 1, 1840, an inventory of the personal property belonging to the Estate of William Bridgman, Deceased was returned to the court by Sampson David, Administrator.    Sampson David was a nephew of Sampson David and Martha (Bridgman) David.    Martha David was the sister of William Bridgman.     Among the inventory items was one old bundle of claims, the distribution of all claims of the Estate of Martha David, Deceased.    

Campbell County Court of Pleas & Quarter Sessions, page 75, shows that in September Commissioners were appointed to "lay off one year's provisions out of the stock and crop now on hand to Mariam Bridgman, widow and relict of William Bridgman, deceased", and that they make report at the next term of this Court.

On October 5, 1840, Sampson David provided the Court with a "true amount of the sales of the Estate of William Bridgman, deceased so far as the property has come to the hand of the Administrator, and been sold." 


The 1850 Campbell County census shows Mariam, 68, widowed; Emily J., 24; Ann E., 21; Oliver P., 20 and Nancy, 18 years of age.     Living next door to Mariam was her daughter and son-in-law, John and Martha D. Archer and their family.

Mariam (Brown) Bridgman died in Campbell County prior to 1859.

Census records indicate that as many as 18 children may have been born to William and Mariam.     Our records include the following children.     It should be noted that some of the children used the Bridgeman spelling and one used the Bridgmon spelling variations.

Children of William Bridgman and Mariam Brown

1. Charlotte S. Bridgman, b. Sept 23, 1807, Wythe Co, VA

2. Mary Brown Bridgman, b. Nov 3, 1808, Wythe Co, VA

3. Martha D. Bridgman, b. April 14, 1810, Wythe Co, VA

4. Isaac Bridgman, b. 1811, Wythe Co, VA     (my line)

5. John Washington Bridgman, b. Aug 1, 1812, Wythe Co, VA

6. Benjamin Franklin Bridgman, b. abt 1813, Wythe Co, VA

7. William Calvin Bridgman, b. abt 1815/16, Campbell Co, TN

8. James Bridgman, b. 1817, Campbell Co, TN

9. Sampson David Bridgman, b. Feb 1819, Campbell Co, TN

10. Emily Jane Bridgman, b. abt 1825, Campbell Co, TN

11. Andrew Jackson Bridgman, b. June 18, 1828, Campbell Co, TN

12. Anne E. Bridgman, b. abt 1829, Campbell Co, TN

13. Oliver P. Bridgman, b. abt 1829, Campbell Co, TN

14. Nancy Bridgman, b. abt 1832, Campbell Co, TN

The music you are hearing is Ashoken Farewell.