When hogs and sheep were brought from Pennsylvania, across the Potomac and up the Valley, we have no means of ascertaining. There is also no record of the birth of the first white child in the settlement around the site of Staunton, There were many infants, however, before the year 1740.
NOTE:.—Alexander Breckinridge lived not quite five years after he came to the Valley, but the inventory of his personal property, made June 5, 1744, and recorded at Orange C. H., shows that his house was better equipped than the dwellings of most of the early settlers. Besides some wooden and pewter vessels, he had one pot, a candlestick, a pair of tongs and a fire shovel, eight knives, six forks, (worth 50 cents), one oval table and one square table, a looking-glass and one tumbler. No spoons of any kind.
Gabriel Jones was the son of John and Elizabeth Jones, of the county of Montgomery, North Wales. At what date this couple came to America is not known. They settled at Williamsburg, Virginia, and on the 13th of August, 1721, their first child, a daughter, named Elizabeth, was born in William and Mary College. Nearly three years later, on May 17, 1724, Gabriel was born, about three miles from Williamsburg. Another son, named John, was born at the same place, June 12, 1725.
John Jones, the father, appears to have died before the year 1727. Mrs. Jones and her children were in England at the beginning of that year, and on February 20th her daughter was baptized at St. Giles-in-the-Fields, London, as shown by the parish record.
In April, 1732, Gabriel was admitted as a scholar of the “Blue Coat School,” Christ’s Hospital, London, on the presentation of Mr. Thomas Sandford. There he remained seven years. Under date of April 12, 1739, the following entry appears on the records of the school:
“Gabriel Jones is this day taken and discharged from the charges of this Hospital forever, by Elizabeth Jones, his mother, and by Mr. John Houghton, of Lyon’s Inn, in the county of Middlesex, Solicitor in the High Court of Chancery, with whom he is to serve six years.”
This brings his history up to 1745, in which year his mother died. Having served out his term of apprenticeship, the young lawyer, then twenty-one years of age, was no doubt “admitted to the bar.” The family were of “gentle blood.” but in reduced circumstances. One of Mr. Jones’ descendants preserves some old coin, on the paper wrapping of which is written in his own hand, “This is the patrimony I received from my mother. From my father I received nothing.” As early as 1750 he used the same crest and coat-of-arms as Sir William Jones, indicating a relation with that celebrated man.
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Edited Annals of Augusta County,Virginia, from 1726 to 1871 copyright © 2006-2017 by EagleRidge Technologies, Inc..