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First Generation

1. Sarah (Sally) DURHAM was born about 1786 in place unknown.1,2,3 She died between 1870 and 1880 in Surry County, North Carolina.
MY THEORY (by Byron K. Durham)
I believe that the Sarah "Sally" Durham, age 64, in the 1850 Census for Surry County, North Carolina, found in the household of Nancy Durham, is the mother of Henry Durham, Nancy Durham and William H. Durham - all living in Mount Airy, North Carolina, in 1850.

Sarah "Sally" Durham (age 64) is living in the household of Nancy Durham in the 1850 census for Surry, County, NC (Mount Airy), and later in the household of Henry Durham's wife, Jane (Chandler) Durham in the 1870 census for Surry County, NC (Mount Airy) at age 85. Henry Durham died before the 1870 Census. This indicates a relationship between Henry Durham and Nancy Durham, listed in the 1850 census (Surry).

Sarah "Sally" Durham appears in the 1840 Census for Patrick County, Virginia listed on the same page as "Henry Durham" who married Paulina Jane Chandler. Henry Durham is also living just a few households away from "Mary Hart" aka "Polly Hart (widowed), who married Cornelius Hart. Polly Hart is a daughter of Gregory Durham and Elizabeth Shelton (Source: Deed of 1816 - Stokes County, NC). The house that "Sarah Durham" is living in 1840, seems to be occupied by "William R. Durham", who married Paulina Fry in the 1850 Census - Patrick County, when you look at similar neighbors. This William R. Durham is believe to be a son of Archibald Durham and Nancy Vaughn. Archibald Durham is also a son of Gregory Durham and Elizabeth Shelton (Source: Deed of 1816 - Stokes County, NC).

In the 1830 Census for Patrick County, Virginia - Henry Durham is listed with an older female living with him who matches the age of Sarah "Sally" Durham. Henry Durham doesn't marry Pauline Jane Chandler until 1839 in Stokes County, North Carolina, so in the 1830 Census, Henry is around age 27, and most likely, "single". There is also a yournger male between the age - 10-15, which is consistent with the age of William H. Durham. A young female is listed as well, between the age - 15-20, which matches Nancy Durham.

On October 28, 1841 in Patrick County, VA, Henry Durham signs a document giving permission to Jonathan Ogden to marry Nancy Durham. This is a tradition usually done from a "father" to a "daughter". Henry and Nancy Durham are too close in age to be father/daughter. Most likely they are brother and sister. This marriage between Nancy Durham and Jonathan Ogden doesn't appear to have happened since Nancy Durham retains the Durham surname in 1850.

There is a "Sally" Durham listed on a Deed between Elizabeth (Shelton) Durham, widow of Gregory Durham, - and Henry Christian made on December 6, 1816 in Stokes County, NC (Source: Deed of 1816 - Stokes County, NC). Several daughters listed on this deed are married and their spouses are listed on this deed as well. Two daughters - "Sally Durham" and "Rebecca Durham" are listed with no spouse. (I presume that Sally and Rebecca were single).

Four years later, in the 1820 census for Stokes County, NC, Elizabeth Durham, (Gregory Durham's widow) is listed with 3 younger females, most likely Sarah "Sally" Durham, Rebecca Durham and Sarah's daughter Nancy Durham. There are two young males listed who match the ages of Henry Durham and William H. Durham - who I believe are sons of Sarah "Sally" Durham.

It is my belief from my research of this family, that Sarah "Sally" Durham was never married, but had three children - Henry Durham, Nancy Durham, and William H. Durham. There may be the possibility of another son - David Durham, who is listed on the Marriage Record for James M. Durham (son of Nancy Durham) - 9 Dec 1866, Henrico County, Virginia, which lists his parents as "David Durham" and "Nancy Durham". Nancy Durham may be a sister-in-law to Henry Durham.

Death certificate of Henry Durham's oldest son - "Armstead J. Durham" shows Armstead was born in "Patrick County, VA". The death certificate of Nancy Durham's oldest son - "James M. Durham" shows he was born in "Patrick County, VA". The marriage certificate of William H. Durham's oldest son - "James M. Durham", shows he was born in "Patrick County, VA". Considering the ages of all the children of these three Durham families living in Mount Airy, NC in 1850 and the states they were born in (some VA - some in NC) - I believe these Durhams moved to Mount Airy sometime around 1847 and most likely moved together.

There are also rumors - that William H. Durham was half cherokee. These rumors have come from several sources along the William H. Durham line. At this moment I have found no evidence to support this - other than the fact that Sarah "Sally" Durham appears to have never married. More research is needed.

This is my theory. It is my intent to find more evidence to either prove or disprove this theory.

Byron K. Durham
Descendant of William Henderson Durham and Pheobe Lawson

Sarah (Sally) DURHAM had the following children:






William Henderson DURHAM.