Waddell's Annals of Augusta County, Virginia, from 1726 to 1871


people to regard the piece as a fiction, and the person himself as almost a myth. Some of the details are certainly fictitious. It is said that Dr. Waddell never appeared in public in the costume described by Wirt. He is described also as a very old man, whereas he was only sixty-four, although his blindness and palsy probably caused him to appear older. Wirt represents himself as a stranger who had never heard of the preacher till he encountered him in the rustic meeting house. They were well acquainted, however, years before the letters of the British Spy were published; and instead of no one in Richmond knowing of the preacher, he was well known by many people there. Other liberties were taken by Mr. Wirt, but to his dying day he declared that he had given a truthful account of Dr. Waddell’s eloquence.

The children of Dr. Waddell who survived him were: James G., born in Lancaster; Mrs. Elizabeth Calhoun, Mrs. Janetta Alexander, and Ann H., born in Augusta; and Addison, (M. D.), Sally and Lyttelton, born in Louisa, near Gordonsville.



a native of the county of Essex, England, was in early life clerk of Henrico County Court, Virginia, and later a merchant in London. Returning to Virginia, he settled in New Kent county. In 1766, he purchased from John Carlyle two hundred acres of land on the Great Calfpasture river, in Augusta. In 1771, he purchased from Carlyle two hundred and fifty acres in the same valley; and in 1772, he acquired from William Wills one hundred and ten acres on a “branch of the Great River of the Calfpasture.” He also acquired lands from the government by patent. All the deeds describe him as “Thomas Adams, of New Kent.” It is well known that most of the African slaves imported into Virginia in former times were brought over by New England “skippers”; and from a bill of sale which has been preserved, it appears that on the 12th of May, 1773, in consideration of £42, 10s., Thomas Adams purchased a negro girl from “Joseph Hanwood, of Newbury, in the Province of New Hampshire, Marriner.” (Virginia Historical Collections, Vol. VI, page 23.)

In 1778-’80, Mr. Adams was a member of the Continental Congress, from lower Virginia. During the year 1780 he removed to Augusta, and spent the remainder of his life here. A deed dated November 17, 1780, by which he conveyed two hundred and thirty-five acres of land, acquired by patent in 1769, to Moore Fauntleroy, describes him as a citizen of Augusta. In 1786, he represented the county in the State Senate. He is described as an ardent patriot, and from his writings, etc., he was evidently a man of great intelligence and benevolence.

He died at his home in the Pastures in the year 1788, leaving a widow, but no children. His will is dated October 14, 1785, and being as follows: “Being about to take a perilous journey to the Ohio river.” It was presented in the County Court of Augusta and proved October 22, 1788. The testator provided amply for his wife, and constituted his brother, Richard, and his nephews, William

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