Family Stories

Bio of Mary Adams

Mary Adams was the wife of James Clarkson, British soldier born in 1749. James Clarkson settled in Essex county Virginia and, according to the Clarkson Family Pedigree, he and Mary Adams were married 14 June 1778, by the Rev Jesse Carter, Episcopal minister apparently in Essex county Virginia.

An Essex county Virginia record shows Jesse Carter as a witness a few months after the marriage date. Church histories indicate he may have filled temporary posts off and on during his career. Jesse Carter was assigned in 1780 to Drysdale Parish located in adjoining Caroline and King and Queen counties.

Mary Adams Clarkson died 17 August 1830 in or near Tappahannock in Essex county Virginia. We have not found a burial for either James or Mary Clarkson, but suspect it was on their property as a letter years later indicates that a son, Richard Clarkson (who died 1824, within a few months of his father), was buried on his father's property.

We have not yet found a birth date, location, nor parents for Mary Adams. A Thomas Bowler Adams found in several Essex county Virginia court records around 1778 and later was the son of Richard Adams, wealthy merchant of Richmond City, and neither are likely to be relatives of our Mary Adams. Another Adams in an Essex county Virginia tax record was a negro. A few other Adams appear in earlier records, in surrounding counties; in particular one Thomas Adams in Caroline county Virginia. They bear investigation.

Adams Summary, by Blanche Aubin Clarkson Hutchison, 1998; updated slightly by Pamela Hutchison Garrett, June 2010.