I have a puzzle regarding the birth year of 'my' Robert Hicks and was hoping someone on this list could direct me.
My Robert Hicks was the brother of William Hicks and they were the sons of John who died Queens, NY, (as proven by a record filed in the Orange CO NC probate file jacket of William Hicks located in Raleigh @ the NC State Archives) Both Wm. & Rbt. were of early Granville CO NC. This Robert Hicks married Sarah Reeves the d/o Wm. Reeves.
From my notes...
Many list the birth year of Robert Hicks as 1713.
In the NCGS article Aug 2003, Pg298- The author Mr. Brayton states that this Robert Hicks was baptized May 21, 1713. This is correct per the records that I found in 'THE ORIGIN AND HISTORY OF GRACE CHURCH, JAMAICA, NEW YORK'. However, in the next paragraph Mr. Brayton states that this Robert was "born" May 21, 1713. Obviously he has made an error in this second statement. OK, so ( I wondered) when was Robert born? When was one generally baptized? Was it at birth, or was it when the individual was 'coming' of an age that he/she could choose to be baptized? I asked the librarian at Sutro Library in San Francisco, she thought it was about the time one was 'coming of age' - - I am not sure what age that would be but suspect in the early teens?
THEN, I found something of great interest when I was looking for 'Reeves' records in Chowan CO NC. In Deed Book 1 Pg 632, on Sept 21, 1718, 'a' Robert Hicks witnessed a deed from Philip Jones of Surry CO, VA to John Lenard of Dominion, VA 250 ac more or less on the north side of Merattock river, adj. William Reeves and the mouth of a Deep Bottom. Wit:Robert Hicks. Reg. Feb 27, 1718.
This seems to be my William Reeves the f/o Sarah as this is the same location where he owned land. If this is my Robert, then he was not born in 1713.
So then I wondered how old did one have to be to witness a deed? Per Pg209, THE SOURCE - A GUIDE BOOK OF AMERICAN GENEALOGY, Edited by Arlene Eakle & Johni Cerny (Revised Edition 1997), the age requirement to witness a deed was age 14 for a male, 12 for a female. Also of note: 'Age to be taxed' was 16 (males only), but also listed was age 21 for full poll responsibility unless exempt. AND per "NORTH CAROLINA RESEARCH, GENEALOGY AND LOCAL HISTORY" BY HELEN F. M. LEARY AND MAURICE R. STIREWALT, the taxable age for white males during the Colonial period was 16. During the Revolution and for some years afterwards it varied from county to county but by 1784 it was fixed @ 21 in all counties.
So, if my Robert was age 14 in 1718 when he signed as witness, then he was born before 1705. Assuming that he was born about 1704, and assuming that this is the same Robert, then he was about age 9 when baptized. Lots of assumptions. (deep sigh) But then I found something else. The 1717 Chowan CO NC Tax List is interesting. It seems that there is a Rbt. Hicks 80ac 1WP, and a Tho. Hicks 200 ac 1 WP on one page (together), and a David Hicks 1000ac 1 WP listed on another page. We know that a Thomas Hicks was a bro/of my Robert. This 1717 Chowan CO NC tax list was published in the Dec issue 1960 of NORTH CAROLINA GENEALOGY (Magazine). William Reeves is not listed in 1717, but does appear on the 1721 list with 130 acres 1WP. This 1721 list published in the NORTH CAROLINA GENEALOGY (Magazine) - Fall Winter 1970. Names and acreage are listed in this publication, but the Polls are not listed on all of the 'lists'. David Hicks is still listed in 1721 with 1000 ac. (# of polls not indicated on this page). Robert and Thomas Hicks are not listed, BUT the tax list is not necessarily 100% complete per the writer.
Also note that one could 'own' land at any age, but could not sell until the age of 21.
So... if this is my Robert on the 1717 tax list, then he was at least 16 years of age in 1717= born abt 1701. I wondered if that made sense. I suppose it could, but then I wondered how old was he when he married? Seems Sarah Reeves was born sometime after 1706, but when? We know that their first (known) child wasn't born until about 1746 (about). That seems a bit off to me. So did they have more (older) children? Or were they married at an older age? So many questions.
Maybe it is not my Robert listed in that 1718 deed and on the 1717 tax list. But it seems odd to me that there were two Robert Hicks that were in the same area of Chowan CO NC and seemingly acquainted with my William Reeves.
Was hoping some other Robert Hicks family researchers might have some thoughts.
Also, (off hand ;-) does anyone know what denomination Grace Church, Jamaica, NY was?
All leads appreciated.