George Petrey (Petrea) was actually born in 1812 in Cabarrus County, NC to Susannah Fisher and George Petrea/Petrey. Here is what I recently wrote on Ancestry.com.
Updated Info May 2012 - Parents of Geo. Petrey and Matilda Dollie Petrey were Geo. Petrey Sr. and Susannah Fisher - Cabarrus, NC
In August 2011, I was contacted by an Ancestry.com member writing that he had come across my Fisher family tree and believed that we had a link between the Fisher and Petrey families from Cabarrus County, NC. Please review the following combined families information as I believe that we have pretty strong evidence that Matilda "Dolly/Dollie" Petrey Stough and George Petrey were the children of George Petrea/Petrey and Susannah Fisher of Cabarrus County, NC.
Petrey Family Information:
Whit Archey wrote that for many years he thought that George and Matilda's parents were William Petrey and Susan Kercher who married in Cabarrus County, NC in 1804 and moved to Clinton Co., Illinois. In fact, he believes that he may have been the one to start that theory. He wrote that he finally DISPROVED that theory a couple of years ago when he had a matrilineal descendant of Susannah Petrey in Illinois and a matrilineal descendant of his ancestor in Alabama (Susan McGraw) tested for Mitochondrial DNA, and found that their mtDNA were quite different. He thought the other genealogical line must be wrong until he found the grave of Susannah Petrey, wife of William Petrey, in Illinois - she had died on 5 Dec 1854. The Illinois Susannah had not married a McGraw after the death of William Petrey, and had not lived in the 1870 household of her daughter Matilda and son-in-law Simeon Stough. She certainly was not the same Susan McGraw that was buried in Rocky Mount Cemetery in Crenshaw, AL in 1872.
He wrote that he knew his ancestor was named Susan or Susannah, b 1789 in NC, probably Cabarrus Co, NC and that her daughter Matilda Petrey was his ggg-gm. His Petrey family historians had been researching for many years the origins of Susan (McGraw). They believed that she married first (but no record) George Petrey, and had two children, George Jr Petrey (b ca 1811) and Matilda Petrey (b 14 Jan 1810 in Cabarrus Co). Matilda married Simeon Stough in Cabarrus Co on 5 Dec 1827, and they soon moved, along with her brother George and several other families, to Upsom Co, GA; stayed a few years and then moved on to Lowndes County, Alabama, what is now northern Crenshaw Co.
Pleae note: The 1830 Census for Upsom Co., GA includes George Jrs' father-in-law Jacob Blackwelder, with an extra male in his household that could be George Petrey, Jr. The sister and brother-in-law of Susannah/Susan Fisher McGraw - Moses Caraker and wife Sarah Fisher Caraker (Caracter on record) had also moved to Upsom sometime after the 1825 birth of their first son in Cabarrus County. Simeon Stough was found in nearby Monroe Co., GA, recorded as Simeon Stout, with he and wife both 20-29 and one small male child under five).
The Whit Archy family assumed that George Petrey Sr. must have died, since there were only the two children. Susan remarried to a Mr. McGraw, but again there seems to be no record of the marriage. They believed that Mr. McGraw must have died within a few years after that marriage. Susan McGraw remained in Cabarrus until at least 1850 because she appears in the census there. (Note: Susan McGraw was enumerated in the household of Solomon Weaver age 46 and CC Weaver 23. At first I thought that CC was his daughter, however I came across the marriage of Solomon Weaver to a Catherine McGraw. It took place on 19 May 1846 in Concord, Cabarrus County, NC. It appears that Catherine died in Jan 1860 as recorded on the 1860 Mortality Schedule).
Some time before 1870 (note: I found Susan McGraw on the 1855 Lowndes County, AL census living alone), Susan McGraw moved to Alabama to live with her daughter, Matilda, and she was enumerated in the household of Simeon and Matilda (Dolly) Stough. Susan died two years later on 8 Aug 1872. Whit attached the photo of her gravestone, which is among a small group of graves in the Rocky Mount Cemetery in Crenshaw Co. that contain the remains of her daughter Matilda and son-in-law Simeon Stough, and granddaughter Martha Matilda and her husband Dixon Hillman Lewis.
Fisher Family Information:
When I started working on the Lewis Fisher Family genealogy back in the late 1970s, I had the records of previous Fisher family members who were working on the family history. They had however collected very little information on Susannah Fisher. They knew Susannah was the daughter of Ludwig Fischer/Lewis Fisher and Christina (possibily House?). She was born abt. 1788 in Cabarrus County, NC. She had married a McGraw, and she had moved to Lowndes County, Alabama.
However, new information surfaced in 1981. A letter was found in Concord, NC with important family records written on the back of of the pages. The letter was found by an insurance company while going through the papers of the estate of J.L. Crowell and given to a family member still living in Concord. The letter was written by the Law Office of Estes & Hill in Washington,DC dated August 30, 1890, and sent to the Law Offices of Montgomery and Crowell in Concord, NC. The letter was in reference to possible monies due to the Fisher family if they were one of the heirs to a Louis Fisher in VA. They were not, but the important information was what was handwritten on the back of this letter - a list of heirs of Lewis/Louis Fisher of Cabarrus County, NC. Among the children listed was Susan, with the notation that she marr Petrea and had two children Dollie and George. At that time when trying to decipher the small writing I thought that Dollie was maybe "Dallie" or "Davie".
I did find a George Petrey family in Lowndes and Crenshaw, AL, but couldn't really find a way to link him to our Susannah/Susan Fisher. The 1855 state of AL census was not as yet available online, and when Susan was enumerated in the 1870 household of her daughter, her last name was listed as McGrath. An additional problem at that time was that I didn't have "Dollie's" given name, Matilda, nor whom she had married. I didn't get an answer to that problem until I received the Petrey family information.
A real breakthrough on Susannah Fisher occurred in July 2010 while visiting Concord, NC. My husband and I made a point to revisit the Lore Family History Room in the Concord Public Library. There I found an item I hadn't seen before, the Minutes of Cabarrus County, NC Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions, July 15, 1805-April 23, 1817, abstracted by Margaret B. Bost. Among the minutes I found some very interesting information.
Page 66 - George Petrea to pay child support to Susannah Fisher. Dated January 1810
Page 69 - State vs. George Petry. Bastardy. To pay Susannah Fisher. Dated January 1810
Page 105 - Susannah Fisher vs. George Petree - Trepass
Page 109 - George Petrea pay child support to Susan Fisher, dated July 21, 1812
Susannah Fisher and George Petrea had two children out of wedlock, one child born in 1810, the other in 1812 (Matilda was born on 14 Jan 1810 and George in 1812). On Matilda Petrey's 1827 NC Marriage Bond to Simeon Stough, she was listed as Dolly Petre. The bondsman listed on that document was Nelson Blackwelder, he would have been her uncle, married to Susannah's sister Mary.
George and Susannah may never have married. I never have found George Petrea Sr. in any records after that July 1812 date. For your records George was the son of Johannes John Petree and Dorothea Bost. George was born about 1789 in Stokes County, NC. His father was born 26 Aug 1750 in Berks County, PA and died about 1790 in Stokes County. His mother was born in 1762 in Cabarrus County, NC and died in that county sometime after 1833.
As to the McGraw marriage, Susan may have married a "William" McGraw ( b. ca 1770), a close neighbor of her parents. Under the circumstances it is understandable that a marriage bond was not securred. William was on the 1820 census for Cabarrus County, but not on the 1830. Susannah/Susan is not found on any census until the 1850 in Cabarrus.
Bottom line is that it was proved through DNA and an Illinois gravesite that Susan Kerscher and William Petrea were not the parents of George and Dollie Petrey. William (name is spelled Petrea on his tombstone and other Illinois records)was born 10 Aug 1782 in Stokes County, NC and died in Clinton County, IL on 21 Jul 1847. He was George's older brother. His wife Susan Kerscher Petrea died on 5 Dec 1854. Both are buried in the Petrea Cemetery, Hoffman, Clinton, IL. They had numerous children including a son named George who was born in 1817 in Cabarrus, NC. George married Catherine Steele on 11 Mar 1841 in Clinton County, IL. He also purchased land in the years following his marriage in Clinton, however he died in 1847 in Leavenworth, Kansas.
Hopefully the above evidence should prove to you that George and Dollie's parents were George Petrey and Susannah Fisher of Cabarrus Co., NC. If nothing else you should remove William and Susan Petrea as their parents from your family trees.
Nancy Fisher - October 2011, last updated May 30,2012
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