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1)  In the 1850 census of Trigg, KY it says Thompson Burke is born in Virginia, but in the 1860 census, it says he's from Pennsylvania.  I believe that Thompson was trying to tell the enumerator that he was born in Pittsylvania County, Virginia, and the enumerator mistook Pittsylvania for Pennsylvania.

2)  In 1850 Christian KY, it says Samuel Burke was born in North Carolina, but in 1860, it says he was born in Virginia.

3)  In 1850 Caswell NC, it says Johnston Burke was born in Virginia.

4)  In 1860 Henry TN, I believe a neighbor gave the information for the family of my ancestor, Madison Burke Jr, and confused his birthplace (which according to every other census from 1850 to 1900 says he was born in North Carolina) with that of his father, Madison Sr, who died prior to 1850.


I think that there were two Burke families in the area in the late 1700s and early 1800s.  One was my family and the other was that of Thomas Burke, who was the first governor of NC following the Revolution and for whom Burke County, NC is named.  He was born in Ireland and was a lawyer before becoming a politician.  I don't think he is related at all, because of his social position and his origins; I feel confident that my Burke line was in America at least in the 1740s.  He owned some land in the part of Caswell County that became Person County.  In the marriage and land deed records of Caswell, Orange, and Person Counties, I believe some or all of the following to be related to Thomas Burke and thus not part of my family:

1) Andrew Burke, shown in the 1790 census in Orange County and as a bondsman for a few marriages in Orange County, and having land transactions with Mary (or Polly) Dougherty, the widow of Thomas Burke. 

2) Mary Burke, the daughter of Thomas Burke who never married.  3) John Burke, who married Catey Barlow in 1802 in Orange County.  4) Michael Burke, in land deeds of Caswell County.  5) Peter Burke shown in the 1800 census of Caswell.

I have included all information I have found on these Burkes, however, as there may be a connection.


There are Burke listings in land deeds and census records as well as marriage records for Rockingham county, but I have found nothing yet to convince me they are related.  Note that the John and Henson Burke of the 1790 Rockingham Census move to Williamson Co, TN by 1830, listed as John and Anson.




The children of James Burke Sr. in Caswell and Orange Cos, NC, in no particular order.  [This info is taken from census and marriage records and Kendall's abstracts.  I have yet to see the first book of will abstracts, the historical abstracts of minutes, or the book of land grants, tax lists, state census, and apprentice lists.  Hopefully, there is some more information on my early family in these three volumes.]

1)  Benjamin Burke  I have the least information on him.  He married Nancy Vaughn in 1800 and he appears in the 1810 census.  He is listed as insolvent in 1813, 1815, and 1819.  He is not listed in the index to the 1820 census, and I failed to find him lokking through the census myself.  A Benjamin Birk is listed as a witness to a deed of Anderson Birk in 1824.  This is probably the same Benjamin Burke, but it may be a grandson of James Burke Sr. instead.  This is all I know of Benjamin Burke.

2)  James Burke Jr.  He was a witness to several transactions of William Gooch Sr., and was apparently courting his daughter, Cisley Gooch.  There is a marriage bond between James and Cisley, but either the marriage never occured or was anulled, because Cisley Gooch later married Devereaux Hightower, as confirmed in the will of William Gooch Sr.  James Jr. married Polly Porter in 1809 and is listed in the 1810 census.  James Jr. bought a slave and some land from his father, James Sr.  He apparently died after the 1810 census.  In Person County November Court 1810 he is mentioned as deceased and in Caswell County October Court 1814 his estate is administered by Thomas Turner and brother Anderson Burke.  His widow, Polly Burke, remarried to Lott Egmond in 1812.  Anderson Burke had sold land to Lott Egmond earlier in 1812.  Lott Egmond is in the 1820 census of Caswell and later moves to Robertson Co, TN, where he dies in 1840.  His wife Polly is still living in Robertson in 1850, listed as Mary Egmond.  I do not know as of yet if James Jr. and Polly Porter had any children.  The boy in the 10-15 category listed with James Burke Sr. in 1820, and again in the 20-29 year old category in 1830 may be the child of James Burke Jr.

3)  Milley Burke.  She married William Redding in 1812 in Caswell, and William Redding is listed in the 1820 census for Caswell.  I have yet to positively locate William Redding in 1830, but he is listed in a tax list for Henry Co, TN in 1836.  In the 1840 censusof Henry, TN, there is no listing for either Milley or William Redding, but in 1850, Milley Redding and three children are listed in Henry, right next to Dorothy Burke, widow of Madison Burke Sr., and her two children.  After 1850, I lose track of the Reddings, but I suspect they move to either Arkansas or Kentucky.

4)  Johnston Burke.  Johnston Burke married Betsey Woods in 1802 in Caswell.  He is mentioned in a couple of land deeds as a witness, and in the 1810 and 1820 censuses of Caswell, and the 1830 census of Orange Co, but thats about it.  Of all the brothers in Caswell, he is the only one I did not find listed as insolvent.  He is also the only brother to remain in North Carolina, where he is listed in Orange in 1840 and Caswell in 1850.  He probably died in Caswell before 1860.  I do not know yet the names of his children but I can guess that in the 1850 census his sons were William, Johnston, John, Grandison, and Archibald, and daughters Penelope and Clary.  Archibald Burke, born about 1810, told enumerators in two censuses that he was born in Georgia, suggesting that Johnston Burke spent some time in that state, but I have yet to find any evidence of that.  I will discuss the grandchildren of James Burke Sr of whom I am not sure of the father later.

5)  Anderson Burke.  He married Nancy Rice, daughter of Nathaniel Rice in 1804.  His bondsman was Wiley Yancey, causing me to believe that Wiley Burke, born about 1805, was Anderson's son.  This hypothesis fits census records.  The "Tennessee Cousins" article stated that Archibald R. Burke, born about 1806, was also Anderson's son.  Anderson had only one other son, Albert Burke, who went with him to Stewart Co, TN.  The Mildred Burke who marrieds Thomas Cox may have been a daughter.  At least two daughters accompany Anderson to Stewart, TN, Susan and Nancy.  Note that by 1850, Anderson's wife, Nancy, has died.  Anderson is the only brother I have been unable to locate in the 1840 census.  Anderson is first mentioned in Caswell deeds in 1805 and last mentioned in 1830.  He was involved in the legal proceedings surrounding the will of his father-in-law, Nathaniel Rice.  In 1805 he witnessed a deed of his father, James Burke Sr.  He bought and sold land in several deeds in Caswell in the vicinity of South Country Line Creek.  In 1812, Anderson is listed as insolvent.  In 1814 he was a witness to two deeds of Jesse and Catherine Womack.  Note that Catherine Womack's maiden name was McNeill, and I believe she was the sister of Margaret McNeill, the wife of Anderson's brother, Samuel Burke.  The last mention of Anderson in Caswell is Apr Court 1830, where is mentioned as buying from the estate sale of James Yancey.  I have yet to see the first mention of Anderson in Tennessee, because I have not yet gotten into the records of Stewart Co, TN.  I think that Anderson probably left Caswell about 1831 or 2, following the death of his father and moved west with brothers Thompson and Madison.  All probably stayed for a while with their brother Samuel Burke in La Fayette, Christian Co, KY.  Anderson must have been missed or not indexed for the 1840 census.  He settled in Stewart Co, TN, near Tobacco Port, not far from Roaring Springs, Trigg Co, KY, where brother Thompson eventually settled.  I assume Anderson died in Stewart before 1860.  I believe his grave to be on Ft. Campbell KY, which is partly in Stewart Co. TN.

6)  Thompson Burke married Nancy Ann Massey in Caswell in 1805.  Note that his bondsman was James Wilson, who also acted as bondman for Madison Burke's wedding.  Thompson had between 13 and 15 children, all born in Caswell.  Milley Burke, born in 1808, was deaf and dumb, and stayed with Thompson until his death, after which she lived with her brother Hosea Burke and then her sister, Minerva Ann Scott.  Quinton Anderson Burke, born 1813, was named after Thompson's neighbor, Quinton Anderson.  A Henderson S. Burke is listed in a poll tax list for Trigg Co, KY in 1841. He was probably also Thompson's son, probably born about 1822, though his name was probably "Anderson" and not "Henderson."  Jacky G. Burke (female) was born about 1817.  James M. Burke was born about 1818, Sarah Y. Burke about 1821, Stephen Burke around 1825, and Minerva Ann Burke about 1829.  Thompson's youngest child was Hosea M. Burke, born about 1831, right before the western migration, possibly named after Hosea McNeill, a Caswell lawyer mentioned a couple of times in the will books in the same article as Thompson Burke; Thompson also sells some land adjacent to someone named McNeill.  [I believe Hosea McNeill was the cousin of Margaret McNeill, the wife of Thompson's brother, Samuel Burke.]  Thompson first appears in Caswell deeds witnessing a transaction of his father, James Burke Sr.  Thompson bought and sold land in Caswell in the vicinity of South Country Line Creek.  He is last mentioned in the deed books as a witness in 1825.  Thompson was listed as insolvent in 1812 and again in 1818.  An obituary for Thompson's son, Quinton Anderson Burke, from the Cadiz (Trigg Co, KY) Newspaper from 1905 states that Q. A. Burke was born 14 Jan 1813 in Caswell Co, NC, and moved to Kentucky at age 19.  This is when I believe James Burke Sr. died and his sons, Thompson, Anderson, and Madison moved west with their families, about 1832.  Thompson is listed in the 1840 census in Christian Co, KY, right next to his son Quinton Anderson Burke and his brother Samuel Burke.  In November 1840 Thompson bought some land from Samuel near La Fayette.  In 1841, Thompson is listed in the poll book for Roaring Springs, Trigg, KY, along with Henderson S. Burke.  In 1850 and 1860, he is listed in Trigg, KY; he died pryor to 1870, although his wife, Nancy Ann, was still alive in 1870.  He is buried on Ft. Campbell, KY, which lies partly in Trigg Co, KY.

7)  Madison Burke was married to Dorothy or Dolly Ellis in 1804; his bondsman, James Wilson, was the same as Thompson Burke.  His name is spelled in various records of Caswell and Orange Cos as Matson, Matterson, Maddison, and Madison.  He is not mentioned in deed books, and I believe from this he must have been the youngest son of James Burke Sr.  He is mentioned in the will books as buying at a few estate sales, and as insolvent in 1819.  He 1827 he administered the estate of Azariah Burke, probably a son.  His known sons were Johnston Burke, born about 1805 and Madison Burke Jr. born Feb 1825, and his only known daughter was Cisley Burke, born about 1823.  He was possibly also father to a Thompson Burke.  In Dec 1830, he was bondman to the wedding of Archibald Burke in Orange Co, probably his nephew, and this is the last mention of Madison in North Carolina.  He probably moved west along with brothers Anderson and Thompson about 1832, and probably spent some time with brother Samuel in La Fayette, Christian, KY.  In 1836, Madison's son, Johnston Burke, appears in a tax list of Henry Co, TN, and in the 1840 census, Madison is listed next to Johnston.  I think they lived in the country between Paris and Springgville.  Before 1850, Madison Sr. died and Johnston moved on to Crawford Co, AR.  In 1850, Dorothy Burke, widow of Madison Sr., is listed with children Madison [Jr.] and Cisley.