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  • ID: I1967
  • Name: Sherwood Adkins
  • Sex: M
  • Birth: ABT 1728 in Henrico County, Virginia
  • Death: AFT 1780 in Montgomery County, Virginia
  • Note:
    There are relatively few records of Sherwood. He first appears on a 1764 road crew list in Halifax County, Virginia.

    In 1765, Sherwood received a land grant of 400 acres on the Pigg River, and then he appears in Hugh Innes' section on the first tax list of Pittyslvania County, Virginia in 1767.

    By 1780, he had moved to Montgomery County, Virginia, where he appears to have died.


    Genealogist Gary Mullins has discovered an old letter mentioning the Mullins family tradition that Booker's father was an ADKINS. This tradition is supported by DNA evidence: male descendants of Booker Mullins match very closely with descendants of William "V" Adkins, b abt 1690. Sherwood is a "best guess" as to which son of William "V" Adkins was Booker's father.

    Sherwood Adkins is listed in Pittsylvania County, Virginia in 1767, and had moved to Montgomery County by 1780, where Booker Mullins first appears in 1789. There are clues in the records, such as a 1764 Halifax Co, VA road crew record of which lists both Sherwood Atkinson & William Mullins, but the strongest evidence comes from the results of Y DNA testing of several male descendants of Booker Mullins.

    Before DNA testing was available, several pieces of circumstantial evidence had pointed to some kind of Mullins-Adkins link, including:

    1) the unusual first name "Sherwood" among Booker's sons, also found among the Adkins families of Pittsylvania and Montgomery counties, Virginia, who appeared there not long before Booker; and

    2) the oral tradition that Booker's wife was of mixed-race ancestry, possibly Native American, and descendants of two of the Pittsylvania County Atkinsons have traditions of "Cherokee" & "Shawnee" "first wives" (see notes for Nathaniel Adkins, b. bef 1762). Although these "Cherokee Princess" traditions have no evidence to support their actually having been true, the fact that they existed in both families pointed to a possible common source.

    Neither of those two pieces of "evidence" were strong enough to prove a link, but recent Y chromosomal DNA testing has shown that Booker was definitely NOT of the same paternal line as William and Ambrose Mullins of Lunenburg County, Virginia, and instead his descendants (via his son Sherwood Mullins) match very closely with a descendant of John SLOAN (d. Bef. June 23, 1769, Pittsylvania Co, VA), as well as with men named HALL, McGUIRE, and ADKINS/ATKINSON, all of the ancestors of whom were in the area of what would later become Franklin County, Virginia in the early 1700s. The Most Recent Common Ancestor (MRCA) of these paternal lineages lived about or before 1700 C.E, and based on the pattern of matches plus the documentary and circumstantial evidence, this ancestor appears to have been William "V" Adkins/Atkins(on), b. abt. 1690 - d. aft. 1753 Halifax Co, VA.

    1) Halifax Co, VA Plea Bk. 4 , July Court, 1764 details a road crew consisting of James Jenkins (the appointed surveyor) for maintenance of a road from Snow Creek to Bobbitt's Road, with the crew made up of the following male laborers: Wm. Lucas, Sherwood Atkinson, Henry Atkinson, Thomas Potter, Benj. Jenkins, Benj. Potter, James Daniel, Wm. Daniel, Thomas Potter Jr., Wm. Hynes, Meshach Willis, Robert Large, William Mullins, and David and John Kerby --these men to clear and keep said road in repair.
    2) Record Book 1737-1770 (counties of Halifax, Pittsylvania, Henry, Franklin and Patrick in VA): 1765, Mar 26 Land Grant: Sherwood Atkinson - 400 acres beginning at white oak in first bent of Pig River above mouth of Doe Creek.
    3) 1767 Pittsylvania Co, VA tax list: Hugh Innes' section: Sherwood Adkins
    4) Family Tree DNA, Houston, TX: Y Search User IDs 8TS5W (Williamson-SLONE), NTY5B (Mullins), T8UVR (Mullins), TAQ4F (Vanover-MULLINS), RJMAE (HALL), R52MJ (McGUIRE), QZTWX (ADKINS), 4PPTT (ATKISSON) - all are Y-Haplogroup L161+ (I2a1b2 AKA I2a2b - the nomenclature keeps changing); SNP test to verify Y Haplogroup, July 2005; Booker Mullins descendant also verified by SNP test; note that direct male descendants of William Mullins of old Lunenburg Co, VA are all haplogroup R1b
    5) : 1-step near match with a descendant of a Henry ATKINSON (d. ca. 1730), who received a land patent of 520 acres in Jan 1723/24 in Hanover Co, VA (note Wm Mullins d. there abt 1734). That Atkinson line later went to Henry Co, VA (c 1770- c 1830), then to IN.
    6) Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation : match with descendant of Bartlett ATKINS, b abt 1809 VA (m. Elizabeth Mahaffea & Nancy Young)
    7) "Although by all accounts (of existing records, and family history) Booker Mullins appears to be a member of the family of William and Elizabeth Mullins of Pittsylvania Co. (later, Franklin Co.) Virginia, a letter written in 1936 by a grandson of Sherwood Mullins (son of Booker) cast doubts on this relationship from a Y-DNA standpoint, and indicates that the genetic father of Booker Mullins was an Adkins."
    8) Research of Gary Mullins (e-mail correspondence Feb 2006)
    9) Ronnie Adkins "Adkins, Land of York, Surrey County, England to Beech Fork, Wayne County, West Virginia" Montgomery, AL ("Sherwood (Sherrod), Adkins, born c. 1728, and married Sally (probably Lucas), around 1760, and lived at Clear Fork, of Wolf Creek, Virginia, that became West Virginia in 1863. Sherwood Adkins was the father of Isaac Adkins, Sr. Born c. 1780 and died on March 29, 1860, and Isaac married on may 6, 1804, to Elizabeth Hager, born c. 1780, in Baltimore, Maryland, daughter of Jacob and Sally Hager. Isaac Adkins, Sr. And Elizabeth Hager had a son named Isaac Adkins, Jr. Born in 1804, in Virginia, in accordance with the Carter County, Kentucky 1850 census." [Ronnie seems to have mixed up his Sherwoods here; Sarah Lucas married a younger Sherwood]

    Father: William Adkins b: BEF 1695 in Virginia?
    Mother: Elizabeth Parker b: ABT 1695 in Henrico County, Virginia

    Marriage 1 ? Mullins b: AFT 1750 in Hanover County, Virginia
      1. Has Children Booker Mullins b: ABT 1767 in Pittsylvania (now Franklin) County, Virginia

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      A prosopographical e-palimpsest, researched & compiled by Steven A. Williamson. Copyright 2005 - 2014. Special thanks to Viola Wright, Lena Ratliff, and Gary Mullins. All post-ems will be removed - e-mail me if you have a question or comment.

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