I have been researching the ancestry of William, the Immigrant, for about eight years. Below is an earlier post specifically related to Edward Atterbury, 3rd born son of William and Sarah. If it whets your appetite for more information on the ancestry of William, please contact me.
"In his manuscript "Atterbury Family", Wayne Atteberry provides two different birth orders for the sons of William and Sarah Atterbury. In one listing, based solely on the number of children in each household reported in the 1790 census, Edward Atterbury was listed as the 9th born son. In the second listing which was based on a combination of the numbers of children, and the Loudoun Co. VA tithable lists, Wayne reported Edward's birth order as the 6th born son.
Through my own analysis of these children it is my opinion that Edward was actually the 3rd born son. This birth order is predicated primarily on the fact that Edward was chronologically the 3rd son to be listed in the Loundoun Co. VA tithables when he was listed with his mother, Sarah, in 1769. Prior to this listing of Edward, only Michael and William Jr. had been listed. This birth order is further supported by the grant deed in Camden District SC dated 22Oct1773 in which Charles Arthurbury was granted 100 acres, witnessed by Michael and Edward Arthurbury. This deed would provide "proof" that Michael, Edward and Charles were all born before 1752 (as they had to be over 21 to receive or witness a grant). Additionally, the 1800 census reported Edward being over 45 years old, making him born before 1755. And, lastly, in another tithable record from Loudoun Co. VA dated 1771 Edward was reported as a head of household (over 21 years of age), giving him a birth year of 1750 or earlier.
You may well ask, "what does Edward's order of birth have to do with anything". In the 15th thru 19th centuries in England it was common practice to name the 1st born son for the father, and the 2nd born son for a grandfather (usually paternal). While not an absolute practice, this naming tradition was frequently practiced within the London Atterbury families. Consequently, absent any other facts, it is possible to infer the christened name of a persons father by studying the christened name of their 2nd born son.
In the case of William Atterbury, Immigrant, he and Sarah named their first born son "Michael", a name which violates traditional naming conventions. Yet they named their 2nd born son "William", which presumably was in honor of the father's name. Does this imply that William and Sarah may then have named their 3rd born son, Edward, after William's father's name? How do we rationalize naming the 1st born son "Michael"? Well, there was a 4th generation child who was christened "Michael Mitchell Atterbury". This Michael Mitchell Atterbury is believed by many to have been the grandson of the 1st born son of William and Sarah Atterbury. These facts strongly suggest that the 1st born son of William and Sarah probably was named for Michael Mitchell, an unknown relation of Sarah's from the maternal side of the family. It is this writer's opinion that, having initially deviated from traditional naming conventions by naming their 1st born son for a male from the maternal side of the family, William and Sarah then, did in fact revert to the traditional naming convention by naming their 2nd and 3rd born sons in the traditional manner, namely, after the father and paternal grandfather.
This is all well and good, but what does it have to do with anything relavant to the ancestry of William, the Immigrant? Many genealogical researchers have assumed William, the Butcher, to have been the father of William, the Immigrant. This writer does not concur in that connection. In fact, this writer has developed strong evidence that the person traditionally held up to be William, the immigrant, namely William Atterbury, son of William (Butcher) Atterbury and Sarah Rogers, christened 25Jun1710 in St. Giles Cripplegate was actual dead sometime before 17Nov1717 when William and Sarah christened another son named William (III) in St. Leonard's Shoreditch.
If William, the Immigrant, wasn't the son of William (Butcher), then whose son was he? This writer has found very strong evidence to support the probability that William, the Immigrant, was the 2nd born son of Edward Atterbury (Arterbury) and Elizabeth [lnu], christened on 15Jul1711 at St. Andrews by the Wardrobe.
Anyone interested in our research into the ancestry of William, the Immigrant, may contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org