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Francis Browning


Indications of a close connection with Samuel Poe of Essex County died 1725


Francis Browning and the family of Samuel Poe are associated in the historical record of Colonial Virginia for a period of at least forty years. Most telling in the points below is that Francis Browning (c1696-1775) became administrator of the estate of Samuel Poe, even though at least one son, Benjamin, must have been almost twenty-one.* Another son, William, seems also to have soon reached the age of twenty-one just after Samuel's death. Francis Browning and William Poe then live near each other in Culpeper County and continue a close association.


* Francis Browning and Benjamin Poe appear in Essex County Court 18th Day of July 1726


While Browning researchers have not shown any family connection to the name Poe, it seems clear that some very close relationship existed between the two families in Essex County and later in Culpeper County. It was no trivial matter for the court to grant the petition of Francis Browning to be the administrator of Samuel Poe's estate, especially when heirs were so close to being of age to inherit. Samuel Poe's estate comprised 905 acres of profitable land. The Poe brothers, Benjamin and William, do not appear to have contested the administration and, indeed, seem to have kept good relations with Browning for many years to come. As noted, William Poe and Francis Browning acquire land in Orange/Culpeper County and live as neighbors there.


See Browning family research: Browning



1) Francis Browning [either Senior (1672-1723) or Junior (c1686-1775] and Samuel Poe are associated as early as 1717. They challenged land issues along with other prominent citizens


Abstracts of Land Trials in Essex County, Virginia 1711-1741. 1992.

page 16. Year of 1717

And upon this day also upon ye return of another report of a jury impannelled & sworn in pursuance of the Order of this Court on the 25th day of March last which report is in ye following words, "In pursuance of an Order of Essex County Court bearing date the 25th of March 1716, wee ye Subscribers being summoned by the Sheriff first sworn did proceed to lay of ye land between John Doe Plt. and Larkin Chew Deft., according to the order of Court. And finding ye evidence & Patend disagree & the Jury divided, could not proceed to lay of the sd. land: Therefore we humbly pray the Worshipful Court to order whether ye land shall be laid of p. the evidences or Patent for it appears to this Jury that either Patent of evidences must be destroy'd, they being directly contrary one to the other."

Tho. Ramsey

Francis Browning

Charles Taliaferro

Jno Pickle

Matthew Collins

John Battaile

Samuel Poe

John Sanders

Fran. Thornton Junr.

Henry Hill

Geo. Robinson

Robert Slater

By which it appearing the order of March Court aforesd. was yet unperformed. it is ordered that the same be renewed and performance thereof made on ye Second Thursday in June next if fair if not the next fair day & that the report of ye proceedings be made to the next Court.



2) Francis Browning buys land adjacent to land belonging to Samuel Poe in 1724


Sparacio, Ruth and Sam, edited and published. 1988

Deed Abstracts of Essex County, Virginia (1721-1724)

Deeds, Bonds & Letters of Attorney Deed Book 17 20 February 1721- October 1724


Francis Browning

Samuel Poe

(Francis Browning acquires land adjacent Samuel’s)

pp. 425-431

This indenture made this 20th day of October 1724 between William Bryant of King & Queen County of one part and Francis Browning of Saint Marys Parish in Essex County Witnesseth that the said William Bryant for sum of Fourteen hundred pounds of Tobo. doth grant unto said Francis Browning & his heirs and assigns fifty acres of land in Essex County being part of a [?] of land formerly granted to John Meadows and Henry Peeters & bounded Beginning at a corner red oak & hickory of Samuel Poe's  land & running thence South to a corner gum on the North side of the South Fork of Peumansend Swamp thence down the Swamp its several courses brought straight North to three gums corner to Samuel Poe's land at ye mouth of a branch thence up the branch North joyning to land of Samuel Poe to the Beginning all which said premises now are in the actual possession of him the said Francis Browning by Virture of Statute for Transferring uses into possession . . .

In presence of Thomas Horde.

William Bryant

John Gouge

Margett Bryant

At a Court held for Essex County ye 20th Day of October 1724

This lease and release admitted to record

Also the same day - - Came into Court Margt. Bryant Wife of the said William Bryant & reliquished her right of Dower which is also admitted to record.


W. Beverley Cecur



3) Ten months later, Francis browning petitions to be Administrator of Samuel Poe’s estate. This is in lieu of an “heir at law” being available within nine months. While it is difficult to know what was going on, it appears that a son would turn twenty-one within nine months. Why would Francis Browning be making this petition if he was not closely related?


Samuel Poe

Francis Browning


Essex County Court 17th Day of August 1725

p. 299

Francis Browning petition for the Adminr. of the estate of Samuel Poe deced is ordered to be till nine months are expired to see if the heir at law will adminstr.

-- It is ordered that Francis Browning take care of ye estate of Samuel Poe deced till Admin. is granted thereof, and that he return an inventory thereof to next court.


4) Within seven months, in March 1726, not the proscribed nine months, Francis Browning became administrator of Samuel Poe’s estate.  The heirs must have been satisfied with the court’s decision. No challenge appears in the record. Additionally, Francis Browning and Benjamin Poe (who must have just turned twenty-on) appears in the Essex County Court on the18th Day of July 1726.


Samuel Poe

Francis Browning


Dorman, John Frederick

Essex County, Virginia Deeds and Wills. 1722-1730. Abstracted and compiled by John Frederick Dorman.


Page 114. Samuel Poe. Inventory. 20 7br [Sept] 1725.

Made according to order of 17 Aug. 1725. Estate not valued.

Signed by Fran. Browning

21 Sept. 1725. Returned.


Pages 126-27. Bond of Francis Browning as administrator of Samuel Poe. Unto Lawrence Taliaferro, Francis Thornton, Salvator Muscoe and John Battaile, Gent., justices. For 150 pounds sterl. 15 March 1725 [1726]. Securities, William Thomas and John Saunders Junr.

            Francis (F) Browning

            William (x) Thomas

            John Sanders

Wit. W. Heny. Terrett.

15 March 1725 [1726]. Acknowledged.


5) Francis Browning has intimate knowledge of Poe family affairs, testifying under oath that Samuel Poe did not leave a will.


Samuel Poe

Francis Browning


Sparacio. Essex County Court 15th Day of March 1726

p. 364

Francis Browning came into court and made oath that Samuel Poe deced dyed without making any will as farr as he knows or believes and on his motion & giveing security for his just & faithful admcon. of the said estate certificate is granted him for obtaining letters of Admcon thereof in due form.

-- Francis Browning with William Thomas & John Sanders Junr. acknowledged their bond for the said Francis his just and faithful Admcon. of estate of Samuel Poe deced which is admitted to record.

-- ordered that John Griffin, John Sanders, John Ellits and George Robinson or any three of them (being first sworn before a justice of ye peace for this county) appraise ye estate of Samuel Poe deced & return their proceedings therein to ye next court.


6) Francis Browning, now administrator of the estate of Samuel Poe, signs the inventory made by Ellits, Robinson and Saunders.


Samuel Poe

Francis Browning


Dorman, John Frederick

Essex County, Virginia Deeds and Wills. 1722-1730. Abstracted and compiled by John Frederick Dorman.


Page. 148. Samuel Poe. Inventory. 7 April 1726. Appraisers sworn before Capt. Lawrence Taliaferro. No total valuation.

Signed by Francis (F) Browning, administrator.

            Jno. Ellits

            Geo. Robinson

            Jno. Saunders

21 June 1726. Returned.


Sparacio 1990

Essex County, Virginia Court Records: Order Book Abstracts of Essex County, Virginia 1725-1729.


Essex County Court 21th Day of June 1726

p. 23 The inventory & apraismt. of the estate of Samuel Poe deced. was this day returned & admitted to record.


7) One month after the inventory and appraisement of Samuel Poe’s estate is admitted into the court record, Benjamin Poe, now at least twenty-one, joins a petition with Francis Browning over right of way through their adjacent properties.


Benjamin Poe

Francis Browning

Essex County Court 18th Day of July 1726

p. 127

The petition of Benjamin Poe, Francis Browning, John Gouge and others praying yt Paul Micou may not have liberty to turne ye road by his quarter of Peumansend is rejected.


8) Nine years later in 1735, Francis Browning is granted 400 acres of  land  in Orange (Culpeper) County.


Francis Browning


Library of Virginia

Land Office Patents & Grants/Northern Neck Grants & Surveys : CATALOG CARD


Francis Browning


Francis Browning 1735 Patent at the Library of Virginia


MULTIMEDIA                        Patent


GRANTEE     Browning, Francis. grantee.

DATE             19 June 1735.

NOTE             Location: Orange County.

NOTE             Grantee(s): Browning, Francis and Ashley, John.

NOTE             Description: 400 acres beginning on the head branches of the North fork of Battle run.

NOTE             Source: Land Office Patents No. 15, 1732-1735 (v.1 & 2 p.1-522), p. 528 (Reel 13).

NOTE             Part of the index to the recorded copies of patents for land issued by the Secretary of the Colony serving as the colonial Land Office. The collection is housed in the Archives at the Library of Virginia.

OTHER FORMAT    Available on microfilm. Virginia State Land Office. Patents 1-42, reels 1-41.


9) Two years later, William Poe, now at least 30 years old, is granted 400 acres, also in Orange (Culpeper) County.


William Poe*

William Watson




GRANTEE  Poe, William. grantee. 

DATE  10 June 1737. 

NOTE  Location: Orange County. 

NOTE  Grantee(s): Watson, William and Poe, William. 

NOTE  Description: 400 acres. 

NOTE  Source: Land Office Patents No. 17, 1735-1738, p. 333 (Reel 15). 

NOTE  Part of the index to the recorded copies of patents for land issued by the Secretary of the Colony serving as the colonial Land Office. The collection is housed in the Archives at the Library of Virginia. 


*Note that six months after receiving the patent in Orange County William Poe and wife Lydia dispose of their land in Caroline County. William Poe appears to have been present, but his wife, Lydia Poe, was represented by Benjamin Robinson by virtue of power of attorney.


10) Showing further associations connected to land, William Poe (and wife Lydia) disposed of their holdings in Caroline County (presumably the inheritance of Samuel Poe’s estate). The deed was proved by John Gouge* (and his son), who also proved (or witnessed) the land Francis Browning  that was purchased next to Samuel Poe’s in 1724.


* In 1755 William and Lydia sell their land to John Gouge (Jr?). William was sued in chancery court in 1749 by Gouge.


Caroline County Court Records


William Poe

Lydia Poe

p. 461 [9 Dec. 1737]

William Poe’s deeds of lease and release of land indented to William Taliaferro Gent. (and also a power of attorney from Lydia Poe to Benjamin Robinson) was proved by John Gough, John Gough, Jr, and Samuel Edwards, witnesses thereto.


11) Following the move of Francis Browning and William Poe to Orange/Culpeper County, William Poe is a witness for Francis Browning , and son.


William Poe

Francis Browning, Jr.


25 August 1748

pp. 81-82

Indenture between Francis Browning of Orange County and Francis Browning Junr., his son, of same .. for two hundred pounds of Tobacco . . grants all his part in tracts of land taken up in Partnership with John Ashley, upon one of the head branches of Battle Run (containing by Patent 19 June 1735, 400 acres) . .bounded . . John Ashley . . Hickman's line . .

Francis Browning


J. Pendleton

Charles Dewitt

William (x) Poe

Thomas Burk


12) Francis Browning’s transferal of land to son. Francis Browning, Jr., is witnessed by William Poe.


William Poe

Francis Browning

Francis Browning, Jr.


19 Oct. 1758. Proved by William Roberts, Richard Corley and William Poe

p. 157-58

Francis Browning of St. Mark's Parish, Culpeper County, unto my son Francis Browning Jr. of Brumfield Parish, Culpeper County. For valuable considerations and for love and affection a father hath for a son. 100 acres being the tract I now live on in St. Marks' Parish . . on the north side the Gourdvine River and corner to Majr. James Pendleton . . up the river . . . at the mouth of the Cabbin Branch corner to John Washburn . . up the branch . . . line of a tract granted by patent to Colonel Henry Willis, now Major James Pendleton . .

Francis (E) Browning

William Roberts

Cornelius Mitchel

Richard Corley

William Poe


13) Poe and Browning as well as Bradford attend an estate sale of Courtney Norman (one of Francis Browning’s daughters married Norman). Richard Bradford is the father of Hannah Bradford, wife of Stephen Poe, SR, son of Simon Poe, Sr, son of Samuel Poe.


Jonathan Poe

Samuel Poe

(Browning, Bradford)

5 November 1771

Account of Sale of Estate of Courtney Norman, dec'd. to 5 Nov., 1771. Purchasers: Reuben Norman, Ezekiel Norman, Cornelius Mitchell, John Norman, Caleb Browning, John Corbin, Richard Murffie, Samuel Poe, William Murffie, Jonathan Poe, William Norman, Miles Murffie, Alexander Baxter, William Reding, Jessey Thompson, Thurmon Crim, William Daniel, Jacob Weekley, Thomas Conn, William Corbin, John Weekley, Jeramiah Corbin, James Attwood, James Browning, William Grimsley, William Day, Miles Murphey, Amry Day, John Norman, Isaac Reding, William Atwood, John Bradford, Joseph Boggess, Courtney Norman, John Norman, Mary Norman.



14) Researchers of Francis Browning have said that he married Elizabeth Lloyd. While no evidence of this union has surfaced, there were other Poe and Lloyd marriages in Culpeper County, VA and Orange/Caswell County, NC.  The only name that has surfaced so far is the name Rachel Browning, wife of the elder Francis Browning who researchers say lived between (1672-1723*).


* No record indicating these dates has been found to date by this researcher.


Francis Browning

Rachel Browning

11-12 July 1711.

Francis Browning of St. Marie's Parish, Essex County, to Joseph Calloway of Southfarnham Parish, same county. Lease and release; for 2500 pounds of tobacco. 100 acres, part of a patent formerly granted to Enoch Doughty deceased . . . on the south side of the head of Portobago Swamp . ..

Francis (F) Browning

Wit: Henry Byrom, James Graves, Jno. Ellits.

12 July 1711. Acknowledged by Francis Browning. Rachel Browning wife to Francis relinquished her right of dower.

11 July 1711. Bond of Francis Browning of St. Marie's Parish Essex County, to Joseph Callaway of Southfarnham Parish, same county. For 5000 pounds of tobacco. To fulfill covenants indentures.

Francis (F) Browning

Wit:: Henry Byrom, James Graves, Jno. Ellitts.

12 July 1711. Acknowledged.



More on Browning - Lloyd - Poe relationships:


The Bradford, Poe and Lloyd families show connections enduring from Culpeper County, Virginia where we find the sons of Francis Browning and the son(s) of William Poe (wife Lydia) as well as a member of the Bradford family being among those at an estate sale.  Throughout the Culpeper County records, Poe and Browning appear closely.


Below, Mary Lloyd, daughter of William Lloyd Sr, married Hasten Poe, almost surely the son of Capt. Stephen Poe (d. 1773) son of Simon Poe, SR, probable son of Samuel Poe of Essex County (d.1725)


North Carolina Marriage Bonds, 1741-1868


Hasten Poe Bride: Mary Loyd  Bond Date: 21 Jul 1817 Record #: 02 321 Bondsman: Thos Lloyd Witness: Joseph A Woods Bond #: 000100019

Abstracts of Wills, Orange County, NC 152-1850 (Shields) has this:

E 342. Will dated 25 April 1835, proved May Court 1835. William (X) Lloyd, SR. Wife: Hannah. sons: Thomas, William, Pleasant, Green and John Lloyd. Daughters: Sarah Lloyd, Mary Poe, Nancy Jones, Elizabeth Lloyd. Daughter Rebecca Williams' children. Executor: John Careathers. Witness: Levi Andrews, William Careathers.

E 253 Will dated 16 February 1831, proved August Court 1831. Andrew Hunter. Wife: Susannah. Son: Aleander Hunter. Daughters: Elizabeth Hunter, Jane Lloyd, Frances Hunter, Eliazabeth Hunter, Christa Hunter, Harriet Hunter. Son: Thomas Hunter. Daughters: Nancy Lloyd and Sary Cate. Executor: Thomas Hogan and John Careathers. Witness: Hasten Poe, Reuben C. Poe

The identify of those below is not clear, but the Poe / Lloyd family closeness continues into the 1820s and 1830s


North Carolina Marriage Bonds, 1741-1868



Lurene Poe Groom: John Stanley Bond Date: 24 Jul 1826 Record #: 03 421 Bondsman: Thomas Lloyd Witness: John Hanner (C.Bond #: 000059912


William Poe; Bride: Fanny King Bond Date: 01 Aug 1838 Record #: 02 321 Bondsman: Elijah Andrus; James Lloyd Witness: J Taylor Bond #: 000100022


William M Poe Bride: Christen M Hunter Bond Date: 15 Jan 1840 Record #: 02 321 Bondsman: William Lloyd, A; A L Hunter Witness: J Taylor Bond #: 000100023


Guilford County

Gabriel P Poe Bride: Betsey Loyde Bond Date: 28 Oct 1819 Record #: 02 356 Bondsman: John Unthank Witness: Jno Hanner Clerk of Court Bond #: 000058843

* according to another researcher, Marlene Poe, this is the daughter of John & Alsy (Harrison) Lloyd


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