John Hayes (30 November 1764 – 1849)

For many years, I believed that John Hayes was the father of my ancestor Solomon Hayes, and that he died in Granville County, North Carolina.  The discovery of his will and other records proving that he migrated to Newberry District, South Carolina has convinced me otherwise.  But, having collected every record I could find on the man, I decided to continue to devote this webpage to him.
I also note many gedcoms at and elsewhere that depict an incorrect ancestry and spouse for him.

Two men named John Hayes in Granville County

Despite the relatively large number of Hayes families in Granville County, there seem to have been only two men named John Hayes.  One of them was in Granville County by May 1764 when he bought land on Nut Bush Creek from Richard Searcy.1  A few months later on 6 October 1764 John Hayes bought 197 acres on Crooked Run from Richard Searcy and on the same day he and Susannah his wife sold 226 acres on Crooked Run to Leonard Linsey.2  This John Hayes died in 1784, predeceasing “our” John Hayes by several decades, when his widow Susannah filed an inventory of the estate. 3

John Hayes, son of Joshua Hayes

Our John Hayes was a generation younger, apparently still living in his father’s household when the 1786 state census of Granville County was taken.   (The 1790 census is missing for Granville County.)  That household had one male 21-60 and one male under 21 or over 60.  One was the father, the other probably the son although he was apparently a year over 21 at the time.  A few complete tax lists still exist for Granville County, but no John Hayes appears on those lists in 1769, 1771, 1780, 1782, or 1784 when he would have been below the taxable age of 21.  He first appears on the 1785 tax list, the same year he would have turned 21 according to his pension application.

John Hays appears several records of Granville County, mostly in conjunction with his immediate family.  He served two three-month terms in the militia during the Revolution, for which he received a pension in 1835 — more on this later.  He witnessed a deed by his older brother Joseph Hayes in 1788.4  On 10 June 1792 he witnessed the will of his brother Joseph Hayes, along with William Moore Johnston.5  And he witnessed a deed from his brother Henry Hayes to Noel Johnston on 10 February 1794.6  He was the security for the marriage bond of HIckman Floyd to his sister Selah Hayes in 1799.7

He was executor of the will of his father Joshua Hayes, probated in 1797, and appears several times in the associated probate files.8

John Hayes is in the 1800 census of Granville living in the Tabbs Creek area with a household of 2 males and 2 females under ten; he and his wife are both 26-45. 9   By the 1810 census his household had one male 10-16, one male 16-26, one male over 45, two females under 10, two females 10-16, one female 16-26, one female 26-45 and one female over 45.10  The 1810 census appears to have also served as a tax list, since acreage is also recorded; John Hayes is shown with 200 acres, though it is not clear how he acquired this land; it was perhaps leased, as there is no deed to him among Granville records.   The 1810 census is arranged alphabetically by district, so the sequence of names is meaningless.  However, of the approximately 1200 households, only 57 are in this district. Among the 57 names are John Hays, Samuel Hays, Simeon Hays, Francis Hester, Joshua Hutchinson, Reuben Inscore, and Patience Johnson.

Marriage to Elizabeth Rogers, daughter of Joseph Rogers

There is a marriage bond in Granville County for the marriage of John Hayes and Elizabeth Rogers dated 5 April 1791, with William Moore Johnston as bondsman and Henry Potter the witness.

Elizabeth was the daughter of a close neighbor named Joseph Rogers, whose will was dated 7 December 1805 and proved in May 1813. 11  The will left nearly all his real and personal property to his wife Sarah Rogers during her widowhood, to be distributed after her death or remarriage to nine children.12  Each of the six daughters was to receive a slave and a share of the residual estate at the death of teh widow Sarah.  She must have died shortly after her husband, for an estate sale was held on 7 and 8 April 1815. 13  On 8 November 1817 the executor reported to the county court that the residual estate totaling $1,030.75 had been divided into seven equal shares of $147.25 for the son Stephen Rogers and the six daughters.  One share went to “John Hayes and his wife Elizabeth” and the rest to the other daughters’ husbands Thomas Peyton, Henry Floyd, Frederick Parham, Thornton Parham, and James McDaniel.14

Eighteen months later on 14 March 1820 John Hayes, with Samuel Hayes a witness, posted bond acknowledging receipt of $147.25 with accrued interest and agreeing to hold the estate harmless.15 He signed with the same stylized signature he would later use in his pension application.

Note that the death of his father-in-law roughly coincided with John Hayes’ move to South Carolina.

The move to Newberry District, South Carolina in 1813

According to his pension application in 1835 (see below) John Hayes lived in Granville County “until about the year 1813” when he removed to Newberry District, South Carolina where he had lived “for about 22 years.”

His wife Elizabeth died shortly before 1820.  Although she was alive in November 1817 according to the court record mentioned above, she was not evident in his 1820 census household, which had no females older than 26.16

Second Marriage to a Widow Named Wealthy Ann

Sometime in the 1820s, after the 1820 census, he married again to a widow named Wealthy Ann.  Unfortunately, there are essentially no marriage records for the period, as South Carolina did not require the recording of marriages until 1911.  However, she was apparently about 50 years old — recorded in the 50-60 column in the 1830 census and as age 78 in the 1850 census.  The 1830 census showed John Hays listed consecutively with his wife’s daughter Nancy Israel.17  All but two of his children had left the household.

The 1840 census shows John Hays (age 70-80) and his wife (age 60-70) with only one female in the household (age 15-20).

Revolutionary War Pension Application

On 20 November 1835 John Hayes applied for a Revolutionary War pension as a resident of Newberry District, South Carolina.18  He stated that he “was born on the 30th of November 1764 in Granville County in the State of North Carolina. He knows his age from an entry made by his father in the family Bible which he has often seen but knows not where it may now be.  He has a record of his age in his own family Bible which was copied from that above mentioned.”  He further stated that “when called into service… he was living in Granville County aforesaid and continued to live there until about the years 1813.”

He stated that he was drafted into the militia in the spring of 1781 under Captain John Henderson and Major Pleasant Henderson.  He marched under Captain Richard Harrison to High Rock Ford on the Haw River [in Rockingham County] where he joined a cavalry troop commanded by Captain John Henderson for a three month enlistment.  He was drafted a second time later in 1781 under Captain Nathaniel Walker and Major Richard Cook.   He served three months near Fayetteville and Wilmington before being discharged.  His application was accompanied by affidavits from two residents of Granville County named Charles Bullock, who served with Hayes in his first enlistment, and Richard Glascow, who served with him in his second enlistment.  The pension was granted at $20 per month.

Further confirmation is found in the pension application of a man named James Weathers.19  In 1854, Samuel Hayes of Granville County, North Carolina, giving his age as 86, provided an affidavit in support of  James Weathers in which he mentioned the service of “his uncle John Hayes… under Col John Henderson”.

Pension records do not indicate an exact death date, only that the final pension payment was made in the fourth quarter of 1848.

John Hayes’ Will

His will was dated 31 March 1847 and proved on 28 February 1849. 20  The will gave his wife Wealthy Ann Hayes a lifetime interest in the estate.   At her death, a slave named Bill was to be sold and $50 given to Elizabeth Hayes Webb, daughter of John Webb and Elizabeth his wife, and the balance given to “the said Elizabeth Webb she being a daughter of my said wife”.  Another slave named Julia Ann and her increase was to be held in trust for Nancy Isarl [Israel] “a daughter of my said wife” during her life, then after her death held in trust for her daughter Ann Abrams, wife of Pleasant Abrams, and at her death held in trust for her daughter Texanna Elizabeth Abrams.

The rest of his real and personal property was to be sold at the death of his wife and the proceeds divided into six parts.  Four parts were to go to “my following children, namely Elizabeth Woodson, Jonathan Hayes, Mary Whitten, and Nancy Welch.”  Another 1/6 part was to go to Patsey Copeland and Hazel Loveless “children of my daughter Rebecca Loveless deceased”.  The final 1/6 portion was left to “Henry Hayes and Elizabeth Whitten, children of my son John Hayes deceased.”  The will then noted that nothing was to go to “my son Joshua Hayes because I have already given to him… more than his share of my estate.”  Wealthy Ann Hayes and “my friend” Samuel McKee were named executors.

The 1850 Newberry census showed “Welthy A. Hays”, age 78, living with her daughter Nancy Israel, age 53.   Whether Nancy Israel was a widow is not clear — there were no probate records found in Newberry District for anyone named Israel.

Seven children identified in the will

All his children were by his first wife Elizabeth Rogers, as he appears to have had no children by Wealthy Ann.  The order of birth is unknown, due to lack of records found.

  1. Rebecca Hayes (ca1791 – 1830s?) S he married Hazel Loveless of Newberry District, apparently almost immediately after her father’s move to South Carolina.  She was his second wife, as he appears in Newberry censuses with several children who predate any possible marriage to Rebecca Hayes.  Her father’s will gave a child’s share of the estate to two of her children, evidently the only two living in 1847:  Patsy Copeland (c1813-?) and Hazel Loveless (c1818 – ?) .  Both were living in or near Lauderdale County, Alabama at the time John Hayes wrote his will.  The father of both children is said by descendants to have been Hazel Loveless Sr.
  2. Joshua Hayes (c1790 – aft1847?)  He was probably the male aged 16-25 in his father’s 1810 household.  He appears in the 1820 census of Newberry, aged 26-45. According to the biographical sketch mentioned below, he went to Georgia with his brother Jonathan, where he was enumerated in 1830 in Talbot County, age 40-50, with four children still in the household.  He must have been alive when his father wrote hsi will, but I did not find him heading a census household.
  3. Jonathan Hayes ( 1797-1871)    He is mentioned in an 1895 biographical sketch of his son Joshua Hayes thusly: “[Jonathan Hayes] was a native of South Carolina and lived there until he reached manhoodwhen, with his brother Joshua, he came to Georgia, locating in Jasper County. There he met and married Nancy Wilson… He soon after removed to Talbot County, later to Muscogee County and in 1864 to Ft. Gaines, Clay Co. where he died in 1871 at the advanced age of seventy-four years.”21  Jonathan Hayes in in the 1840 census of Talbot County and the 1850 and 1860 census of Muscogee County.  His thirten children, five of whom died in the Civil War, are listed in the same volume.
  4. John Hayes (c1805?-by1847)  It isn’t clear when he was born, as there appears to have been a son who died in childhood, but he must have been either the male aged 15-20 in his father’s 1820 household. His father’s sill suggests that John was dead by 1847 but left two children named Henry Hayes and Elizabeth Whitten.
  5. Elizabeth Hayes (? – ?) She was Elizabeth Woodson in her father’s will.
  6. Mary Hayes (? – ?) She was Mary Whitten in her father’s will.
  7. Nancy Hayes (? – ?) She was Nancy Welch in her father’s will.


  1. Granville County Deed Book G, page 215. []
  2. Granville County Deed Book H, page 16 and 17. []
  3. Granville County Will Book 1, pages 420 and 423 include an inventory and sale by Susannah Hayes, widow of John Hayes. []
  4. Granville County Deed Book N, page 129. []
  5. Granville County Will Book 3, p13. []
  6. Granville County Deed Book P, page 106. []
  7. Granville County Marriage Bond dated 27 December 1799. []
  8. See paper on Joshua Hayes. []
  9. The 1800 census shows John Hays and Francis Hester listed consecutively, with Samuel Hays, Jesse Hays, Thomas Johnston, Noel Johnston, Joshua Hutchinson, and Hutchinson Floyd all in the Tabb’s Creek area. []
  10. The female 26-45 was certainly his wife, the eldest female is unknown.  It is not completely clear whether the female in the 16-26 column is actually marked or whether this was intended by the enumerator as a dash. []
  11. Granville County Will Book 7, page 311. []
  12. The nine children named in  the will were sons Joseph, William, and Stephen Rogers and daughters named Rachel, Elizabeth, Sarah, Anna, Mary, and Susannah.  The surnames of the daughters were not given in the will, though several fo them were already married by 1805. []
  13. Granville County Will Book 7, beginning on page 610. []
  14. Granville County Court Minute Book 1816-1820, page 148. []
  15. Granville County Loose Estate Records, estate of Joseph Rogers. []
  16. 1820 census, Newberry District: John Hays  110101 – 11100.   Two pages away was his eldest son Joshua Hays  110210-10010. []
  17. 1830 census, Newberry District: John Hays  000100001 – 01000001 followed by Nancy Israel 01 – 000001 []
  18. Pension File S21268. []
  19. Pension File R11232. []
  20. Newberry District Will Book 01, page 409. []
  21. “Clay County Sketches”, Memoirs of Georgia, Vol. 1 (Southern Historical Association, 1895), pages 494-495. []