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Thoughts from Kevin Maddux decendant of Alexander Maddox b 1613

The spelling of our family name has been recorded in many ways: Mattocks, Madochs, Madox, Maddox, Mattox, Maddux, Madduex and possibly other forms. My father has been adamant that the name was always spelled Maddux and that a different spelling denoted a different heritage. I have heard similar stories from other people whose name is spelled Maddux. In the 1850 census records for my Julius Augustus Maddox 1st, I have found his name recorded as Mattox. In land records, the same man's name is Maddox. Julius Augustus 2nd spelled it Maddux. The origin of the spelling of our name is a confusing issue.

Alexander Mattocks name alone encompassed many of these variations, since his arrival in 1635. The Mattocks name is recorded in his will and is considered by some Genealogists to be the correct spelling of his name. But the name is recorded as Madox in the Engagement to be true to the Commonwealth of England, Northampton County Virginia March 1651-2. That document he likely would have signed himself, unless he was illiterate. It was recorded this way again in the Certificate granted to him for 300 acres of land in Northampton County Virginia February 28, 1652. However, in the joint land grant with James Jones for 516 acres the name is recorded as both Madochs and Madocks. I believe these various spellings of these names to be the result of illiteracy and what my mother tells me is the result of phonetic spelling. Either of these hypothesis leaves us with a result of a true lack of knowledge as to how his name was actually spelled. It is apparent that how his name was spelled exactly was not an important issue for his time.

So, how do we choose the proper spelling for our ancestor Alexander? It is left to your discretion.

The Maddox Family

 

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