ABT 1828 - Lancaster, VA
AFT 2 FEB 1882 - Lancaster, VA
Zamoth H. GeorgeZamoth George >> Luther George >> Gordon George >> Marvin George >> Maida George
Zamoth was a farmer and waterman in Lancaster County.
The origins of Zamoth H. George were a family mystery for many decades. Marvin L. George documented efforts to research Zamoth in the late 1980s and early 1990s. He found records for three different Zamoth or Zamouths in Lancaster County and concluded that Zamoth H. was a son of Zamouth Sr. After many more years of work six total Zamoths were identified in 19th century Lancaster County and placed in family trees, each of the other five was traced to Martin George, who provided supplies to the Revolutionary army and died before 1787. Zamoth H. still did not fit with the other names until the discovery of the will of Michael W. George that named Zamoth H. as a son and made him a great-grandson of Martin.
The earliest recordings of Zamoth's name I have located in the county records are the personal property taxes collected July 16th, 1849 and July 10th, 1850. Both times Zamoth's name was listed but was not marked as owning anything taxable. By looking at his father's tax records, it appears Zamoth was still living at home in July of 1848.
In a deed dated August 8th, 1850 Zamoth H. George sold to Nancy Wilder a parcel of land on Carter's Creek formally owned by James Wilder and bordering land owned by Jesse George. Zamoth signed his name by making a mark. Nancy was the widow of Michael Wilder. At the time of his death Michael was the administrator of James Wilder, his brother. In a court order from December 1847 the lands of James Wilder were ordered to be sold by the sheriff, William H. Kirk. There appears to be no record of Zamoth buying the land, and no records to tell who Kirk sold the land to. Around the same time as the deed from Zamoth was recorded Nancy Wilder also purchased land formally belonging to James Wilder from a Sarah A. George of King William County. Also in 1850 and again in 1852 Nancy sold pieces of land to Michael W. George.
On the 1850 census, taken less than a month after their deed was made, Zamoth is listed as a 22 year old farmer living with Nancy Wilder, age 44, and her four children; Harriet, 15, Newman, 10, Michael, 7, and Sarah, 4. Her real estate was valued at $1787. According to the agricultural schedule she owned 75 acres with 70 improved.
Zamoth and Harriet Ann Wilder were married March 3rd, 1851 in Lancaster County by Cyrus Doggett. Their son, Luther H. George was born in January of the following year. Harriet did not live long after, she may even have died during childbirth. Marvin L. George believed that the Wilder's lived near Foxwells on a piece of land that came to be known as the Treakle property, he thought that Harriet could have been buried in a old graveyard there that was overgrown and missing markers in 1990. With more documents uncovered I think the Wilders were always at Carter's Creek and Harriet may have been buried in the Wilder Cemetery but her marker no longer exists. Zamoth never remarried.
Zamoth's father wrote his will in 1857 and it was proven August 16th, 1858. The will stated the names of all five children and gave each son only two shillings. He named his daughters to divide the remainder of his estate equally. It seems possible that Micheal had already given land to his sons, and this would explain how 22 year old Zamoth had land to sell in 1850, though I have not located a deed of gift or other document to prove that theory.
On the 1860 census Z.H. and "Lutha" were listed in the eastern district of Lancaster county. Zamoth's age was given as 33 and he was working as an oyster man. He was also marked unable to read or write. Luther's age was 9, he was marked as attending school that year. According to Marvin L. George, "Zamouth rented... [from] James C. Haydon on Carter's Creek which as I understand was located on the left side of the road somewhere below the Irvington Baptist Church."
When the Civil War began Zamoth was examined by a doctor from the 92nd regiment of the Virginia Militia and found him "by disease unfit for military service." Zamoth was conscripted later in the war and examined again. In February 1864 he received a Surgeon's Certificate of Exemption stating that he had epilepsy. According to a claim he would make years later Zamoth was not entirely unaffected by the war.
On the 1870 census Luther was no longer living with Zamoth. L. H. George, age 18, lived with his uncle, Michael H. Wilder and his wife, Emma. Luther's grandmother, Nancy Wilder is also listed as a member of the household and it is possible they were still living on the same property she was listed on in 1850. Luther's profession was listed as an oysterman. Zamoth was listed as living with Alonzo and Eliza James in the same area. His name was given as Zam George, age 42 and he was working as an oyster man also. Even though they were not living together Zamoth appeared to still be supporting Luther, a receipt from 1870 showed he payed $1.50 in July for Luther's tuition.
In April of 1871 a "Zamuth" George bought eight acres of land from Jesse and Judith George for $100. The property was described as bounding Little Oyster Creek on the north, Big Oyster Creek on the south, the narrows on the west and a ditch on the east. This land is near the end of present day Windmill Point Road. It is possible that this was not the same Zamoth.
Zamoth H. George applied to the Southern Claims Commission in the early 1870's for reimbursement for property lost to the Union Army during the Civil War. He claimed that his canoe valued at $150 and a double barrel shotgun valued at $20 were taken from his residence on Carter's Creek by Yankee Gunboats from the Potomac Flotilla under Comander Parker in April of 1864. In his statement Zamoth described the boat as a "very large new canoe." The statement goes on to say:
"Your petitioner further states that he could not stay at his home in Virginia without being conscripted and forced into the Army of the Confederate States so called against his will and left his home and went away in the United States Gunboat Commodore Read Commander Hooker to Point Look Out Md and there took the oath of Allegiance to the United States government. And remained in the state of Maryland until the war ended and then returned to his home in Lancaster County Virginia."
Zamoth's claim was not paid and marked as barred, which indicates that the paperwork was not filed by the deadline.
Again in the 1880 census Zamoth was living with the Alonzo James Sr and his wife, who was Eliza Ellen George. His name was written out as Zamoth H. George. His age was given as 50 and he was marked as a widower. In the field for occupation was written "At Home," possibly indicating he was in poor health. He was also marked as being a cousin. Eliza was the daughter of Jesse and Judith George (not the same couple from the 1871 deed), Jesse being a brother of Michael W. George Sr. Zamoth appears to have been close to the family, in addition to living with them for many years he also had some business dealings with Alonzo.
On February 2nd, 1882 Zamoth received a receipt for paying to pasture livestock on Corrotoman Farm. According to Marvin L. George this was somewhere near Wharton Grove Camp. This is the last known record that seems to indicate that Zamoth was still living, his date of death is unknown. On February 11th, 1888 Alonzo James Jr wrote to the Lancaster County sheriff "that I have oysters and shells on the shore you have advertise[d] for sale, rented by A James Sr and Z H George..." No mention of the length of the lease or when it began is made in the short letter, so it is unclear if Zamoth was alive at that time.
There is a marker in the cemetery at White Stone Baptist Church engraved with "Zamoth George In Memory of a Kind Old Man ALM". The "ALM" on the stone is likely Annie L. James, daughter of Alonzo and Eliza, whose married name was McGregor. From the style of the stone it looks like it was placed some time after the death of Zamoth. I am not sure if this stone is marking a grave or if it is only intended as a memorial. Even though the church was chartered in 1895 the cemetery is older with headstones showing death dates as early as 1849. Alonzo and Eliza James are buried in the adjacent plot.
- Family Tree of the six Zamoth Georges
- 1849 Tax Record (Last Line)
- 1850 Tax Record (Line 1)
- 1850 Deed (original) - 2
- 1850 Deed (Deed Book Copy)
- 1850 Census
- 1851 Marriage Record
- 1858 Tooth Extraction
- 1860 Census
- 1868 Oyster Tonging License
- 1870 Tuition Bill
- 1870 Census
- 1871 Deed - 2
- Southern Claims Commission Claim - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5
- Southern Claims Commission Denial
- 1880 Census
- 1882 Pasture Receipt
- 1885 Luther H. George Marriage Record (PDF)
- 1888 Mention of oyster shore lease
- "Lancaster, Virginia, United States Records," images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QHV-J385-D9K3-X : September 18, 2020), image 172 of 214.
- "Lancaster, Virginia, United States Records," images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QHV-V385-D9GY-4 : September 3, 2020), image 193 of 214.
- "Lancaster, Virginia, United States Records," images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-89P6-L5LG : September 2, 2020), image 67 of 624; Virginia. County Court (Lancaster County).
- "Lancaster, Virginia, United States Records," images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-C37X-2Q7Z-P : September 3, 2020), image 976 of 999; Virginia. County Court (Lancaster County).
- "Lancaster, Virginia, United States Records," images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99XF-JN4N : October 24, 2020), image 383 of 386; Lancaster County (Virginia). County Clerk.
- Year: 1850; Census Place: Lancaster, Virginia; Roll: M432_955; Page: 289A; Image: 107
- Year: 1860; Census Place: Eastern District, Lancaster, Virginia; Roll: M653_1357; Page: 655; Image: 237; Family History Library Film: 805357
- Year: 1870; Census Place: White Stone, Lancaster, Virginia; Roll: M593_1658; Page: 238B; Image: 482; Family History Library Film: 553157
- Year: 1880; Census Place: White Stone, Lancaster, Virginia; Roll: 1375; Family History Film: 1255375; Page: 140B; Enumeration District: 045
- U.S. Southern Claims Commission Master Index, 1871-1880
- Virginia, Select Marriages, 1785-1940
- Marvin Lewis George, Family History Scrapbook
- Virginia Will & Probate Records
- Lancaster County Will Book 28, pgs. 109 & 152.
- Lancaster County Chancery Cases.
- Marvin L. George Family Scrapbook