This genealogy of the Walker, Shaon and Smith ancestors of Harriott Deaver is an excerpt from the transcription of a handwritten notebook I discovered in my grandmother’s papers. The family history in this notebook was the work of two women, Agnes Caroline Wickham and her daughter, Harriott Benedict Wickham Barton (my grandmother), who separately researched and made entries in it over a period of seventy years. Agnes Wickham wrote roughly half of the entries in the notebook from 1909 to 1915. In 1915, she gave handwritten copies of her work to each of her five children: Eleanor, William, Lucy, David and Harriott. Harriott continued her mother’s work off and on for the next sixty years, adding entries as late as 1977.
Walker and Shaon
Eleanor Walker, born in Maryland (her tombstone in Norwalk says in Washington County) about 1762 or ‘63; died May 28, 1848, age about 86; married (1) David Shaon, a doctor, January 23, 1786 – he died March 22, 1799 (2) John Curran, August 23, 1780 – he died 1807 (3) John Thompson, May 16, 1812 – he died September 30, 1819.
1. Singleton Lyle Shaon, born May 6, 1788; died September 30, 1803; buried at Georgetown.
2. Harriott Shaon, born March 12, 1790 in Bedford County, Virginia; married James Deaver, January14, 1808. Went to Albana, New York when a bride and lived near and was friendly with the old Dutch families there. Was living in Watertown New Jersey in 1835 – and moved to Ohio to be near her daughter, Ellen who was living with her husband, T.W. Crowell at New Haven in Huron County. She was very fond of flowers and in her later years spent most of her time working among them. She died in New Haven, November 7, 1783, and is buried on the Benedict lot in Woodlawn Cemetery, Norwalk.
Eleanor W. Shaon’s Bible lists “Elijah Walker” as dying in 1811, aged 38. He must have been her younger brother or a cousin. The Deavers lived in the house (still standing in 1968) just east of the old Methodist Church. James Deaver was a cabinet maker (very skilled and artistic. Made the drop leaf table I have, when he married. Also the desk-secretary which E.S.W has). [Later (1977) this is the one in my dining room. He made it a wedding gift for my mother (Agnes)]. Eleanor Walker lived with her uncle (whose name we do not know) – possibly Singleton Lyle? – in Baltimore. Very charming. Family story has it that the young beaus drank toasts from her slipper! Grandpa David Benedict always referred to her, jokingly, as “The Baltimore Belle.” (I think the stories about her bored him).
Samuel Smith of Harford County, Maryland; married Ann about 1752 – she died November 5, 1806; Samuel died January 18, 1811.
1. William (Colonel In War at Baltimore, 1812-13).
3. Margaret Ann; married Hugh Devier.
4. Jonathan, born December 24, 1760; died January 1807 (no heirs).
5. David. Went west.
6. Nancy; married McLaughlin (went to Kentucky).
7. Jane; married Diffin; died September 1815 (no heirs).
“Grandfather Samuel Smith had a wagon running to carry provisions for the war, and ran up pewter for bullets. Uncle Jonathan Smith drove Grandfather’s wagon in hauling flour from a ship frozen up in the bay to the army.”
Extract from letter written to Eliza Ann Deaver by Samuel Smith Of Harford County, Maryland, April 19, 1856, now in the possession of Eleanor Wickham. I gave this letter (which Eleanor gave to me) with another of same, to Ellie, as she is nearest to Harford County.
There is a tradition in the family that in the War of the Revolution Samuel Smith raised a company in which were enlisted his seven sons and his son-in-law were enlisted (probably it should have been seven sons and sons-in-law, as we have record of four sons & three daughters). During a battle near their home, the youngest son rode to the door, and called to his mother & sisters to melt the pewter dishes and make bullets. The mother asked if all were well, and he answered that he did not know about his brothers, but his father was all right when he left as he had sent him for the bullets. James Deaver, 1782-1854 often told his children how he remembered a barn on his grandfather’s place, where the guns belonging to the company were stored after the war.
The Smiths and Deavers included several school teachers according to old letters. Samuel Smith who wrote to Eliza Ann Deaver in 1856, was weak in spelling, but wrote well and with humor (which I think was not a Deaver trait!) My Grandfather Benedict loved to tease his wife, Harriott Deaver, who did not care for humor, nor understand it. I adored my Grandfather Benedict and followed him about – in the garden or his shop. On Sunday afternoons, he and the men of the family gathered in his “office” at the rear of the house and talked or listened to his stories of the Civil War. I usually was quietly in a corner, listening to their talk – much more interesting than the women folk in the sitting room!
NOTE: Agnes and Harriott cited their sources in the margins of original notebook. I included these citations as footnotes, attempting to keep them as close as possible to where they appear in the original notebook.
I would appreciate critiques and corrections of this genealogy. Please comment below. Thank you.
© 2006, 2009 by David Barton. All rights reserved