Caswell County Family Tree

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  • ID: I29748
  • Name: Major Lea 1 2 3
  • Sex: M
  • Reference Number: 29748
  • Burial: Lea Springs Cemetery (Grainger County, Tennessee)
  • Birth: 21 APR 1771 in North Carolina 2 3
  • Death: 16 JUL 1822 in Grainger County, Tennessee 3
  • Note:
    Major Lea (1771-1822)

    Home of Major and Lavinia J. Lea Built 1793

    Lea Estate Article


    (for larger image, click on photograph)

    Home of Major Lea and Lavinia Jarnagin Lea built 1793.

    Some researchers show that the Major Lea of this entry was married to both Lavinia Jarnigan and her sister Rhoda Jarnigan. However, others believe that Rhoda Jarnigan married the Major Lea, Jr., who is a son of Major Lea and Elizabeth Herndon Lea (or Betsy Slade). The latter version is believed correct and will be used in this database. The two men with the name Major Lea (but one a Jr.) are paternal first cousins as their fathers are brothers. They just happened to marry sisters.

    See: Find A Grave Memorial #7708595.

    According to the above-referenced Find A Grave Memorial, Major Lea served as a member of the first court in Grainger County; became Baptist minister; elected as State Senator; appointed a charter member of Madison Academy in 1806, and was also a charter member of East Tennessee College which later became the University of Tennessee. He is buried in Lea Springs Cemetery (Grainger County, Tennessee).

    Major Lea came to Grainger County [Tennessee] in 1792 and was elected to be one of the commissioners who selected the seat of justice for the county. He was only 25 years old at the time. It is believed that Major lea built the home called The Springs around 1793. Major Lea married Lavinia Jarnagin and they had a son named Pryor Lea, who, from 1827 to 1829 was a representative to Congress. In 1880, The Springs was enlarged into a hotel and resort area known as Lea Springs which quickly became a very famous resort where people came to enjoy the mineral waters.

    Source: Tribune State Newspaper, date unknown.

    Major Lea, born 21 April 1771 in Caswell County or Wilkes County, North Carolina, died 16 July 1822 in Grainger County, Tennessee, married 19 November 1793 in Jefferson County, Tennessee, Lavinia Jarnagin. She is a daughter of Captain Thomas Jarnagin and Mary Witt.

    They had the following children:

    (a) Judge Pryor Lea, born 31 August 1794, died September 1880 in Goliad, Texas, married (1) 6 October 1818, Knox County, Tennessee, Maria Kennedy, married (2) Minerva Heard, married (3) Mrs. Mary Perkins (died 1866 in Goliad, Texas). See the 1830 Grainger County, Tennessee Census.

    (b) Dr. William Wilson Lea, born 9 April 1796, died 14 February 1878 in Fulton, Tennessee, married (1) Eliza Augusta Lewis 21 December 1821 in Nashville, Tennessee, married (2) Mrs. Martha Newton Corprew 1854. See the 1830 Grainger County, Tennessee Census.

    (c) Anderson Lea, born 4 February 1798, died 1807.

    (d) Thomas Jarnagin Lea, born 11 November 1799, died 6 October 1838 in Knox County, Tennessee, married 27 September 1821 in Knox County, Tennessee, Mary Carper Talbot, who died 1867 in Davies County, Kentucky. See the 1830 Grainger County, Tennessee Census.

    (e) John Hampton Lea, born 12 October 1801, married Eliza Ann Martin (Gibson County, Tennessee, Census 1830).

    (f) Cynthia Lea, born 31 August 1803, died 31 July 1890, married 20 February 1838 Reverend Elihu Millikan, who died 20 December 1864.

    (g) Harmon Graves Lea, born 24 August 1805, died February 1887, married 2 October 1827 Johanna Shields, who died 9 November 1883 (Grainger County, Tennessee, Census 1830).

    (h) Cecelia Lea, born 2 May 1807, died June 1807.

    (i) Albert Miller Lea, born 23 July 1808, died 1891, married (1) Ellen Shoemaker, married (2) Catherine D. Heath.

    (j) Luke Lea, born 16 November 1810, married Vicksburg, Mississippi, Mrs. Mary Mayrant Smith.

    (k) James Lea, born 22 May 1814 in Grainger County, Tennessee, died 7 July 1814.

    Source: Casey, Albert Eugene. Amite County, Mississippi 1699-1890 (Volume #3): The Environs. Birmingham (Alabama): Southern Historical Press, Inc., 1957, p.565. Print.

    Father: Luke Lea b: DEC 1739 in St. Georges Parish, Spotsylvania County, Virginia
    Mother: Elizabeth Wilson b: 1739

    Marriage 1 Lavinia Jarnagin b: 02 OCT 1770 in Virginia
    • Married: 05 NOV 1793 in Jefferson County, Tennessee 3
    1. Has Children Pryor Lea b: 31 AUG 1794 in Knox County, Tennessee
    2. Has No Children William Wilson Lea M.D. b: 09 APR 1796
    3. Has No Children Anderson Lea b: 04 MAR 1798
    4. Has Children Thomas Jarnigan Lea b: 11 NOV 1799
    5. Has No Children John Hampton Lea b: 12 OCT 1801
    6. Has No Children Cynthia Ann Lea b: 31 AUG 1803
    7. Has No Children Harmon Graves Lea b: 24 AUG 1805
    8. Has No Children Cecelia Lea b: 02 MAY 1807
    9. Has Children Albert Miller Lea b: 17 JUL 1808 in Knoxville, Knox County, Tennessee
    10. Has Children Luke Lea b: 16 NOV 1810
    11. Has No Children James Lea b: 21 MAY 1814

    1. Details: Lea Families in Caswell & Person Counties North Carolina, and in Virginia Before 1800, Ben L. Rose (1995) at 15
    2. Details: Find A Grave Memorial #7708595: Major Lea
    3. Details: Amite County, Mississippi 1699-1890 (Volume #3): The Environs, Albert Eugene Casey (1957)

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