Joseph Sanders

North Carolina, USA
Death Mar 1803 (aged 47–48)
Randolph County, North Carolina, USA
Burial Unknown
Memorial ID 62313685 · View Source
Suggest Edits

JOSEPH SANDERS was born about 1755 in North Carolina (Orange County?), and died between March 18, 1803 - 1805 in Randolph County, North Carolina. He married REBECCA UNKNOWN about 1778 in North Carolina. She was born about 1755 in North Carolina (probably) and died after 1811 in Randolph County, North Carolina.


i. RACHEL SANDERS, b. 1779, Randolph County, North Carolina; d. Bet. 1851 - 1860, Hempstead County, Arkansas; m. FRANCIS SANDERS, August 21, 1801, Randolph County, North Carolina; b. 1782, Montgomery County, North Carolina; d. Bet. 1857 - 1860, Hempstead County, Arkansas.

ii. MARY SANDERS, b. Abt. 1782, Randolph County, North Carolina; d. Bet. 1830 - 1850, Jackson County, Alabama; m. BENJAMIN SANDERS, Abt. 1803, Montgomery or Randolph County, North Carolina; b. Abt. 1766, Cumberland or Anson County, North Carolina; d. Bet. 1840 - 1850, Jackson County, Alabama.

iii.GEORGE MCGUIRE SANDERS, b. 1784, Randolph County, North Carolina; d. December 22, 1867, Jackson County, Alabama; m. PHEBE SANDERS, 1806, Randolph County, North Carolina; b. 1785, Montgomery County, North Carolina; d. Aft. 1850, Jackson County, Alabama.

iv.JOHN SANDERS , b. 1785, Randolph County, North Carolina;possibly the same John who married RACHEL RANDON, October 23, 1811, Randolph County, North Carolina. John was a witness to a transfer of land by his brother George in the 1830s. His whereabout after that are unknown.

v. SARAH SANDERS RICH, b. June 11, 1787, Randolph County, North Carolina; d. December 26, 1869, Liberty Township, Grant County, Indiana; m. PETER WALL RICH, 1808, Randolph County, North Carolina; b. July 17, 1783, Guilford County, North Carolina; d. December 12, 1872, Liberty Township, Grant County, Indiana.

vi. PHEBE SANDERS SANDERS, b. May 25, 1789, Randolph County, North Carolina; d. Aft. 1830, Lawrence County, Tennessee; m. JESSE SANDERS, Abt. 1806, Randolph County, North Carolina; b. May 17, 1780, Montgomery County, North Carolina; d. Aft. 1839, Lawrence County, Tennessee.

vii. JOSEPH SANDERS, b. 1793, Randolph County, North Carolina; d. April 10, 1863, Mud Creek, Jackson County, Alabama; m. (1) MARTHA SANDERS, August 21, 1809, Randolph County, North Carolina; b. Abt. 1793, Montgomery County, North Carolina; d. Bet. 1834 - 1839, Jackson County, Alabama; m. (2) DEBORAH SAUNDERS, Abt. 1839, Jackson County, Alabama; b. March 07, 1803, Montgomery or Randolph County, North Carolina; d. Abt. 1854, Jackson County, Alabama; m. (3) MAHALA HARPER, November 11, 1860, Jackson County, Alabama; b. September 07, 1818, Tennessee; d. October 29, 1885, Franklin County, Arkansas.

The Joseph Sanders of Randolph County who died in 1803 is believed to be the same Joseph Sanders who served in the Revolutionary War from the Hillsborough District of North Carolina. His descendants are eligible for membership in the Sons of the American Revolution and the Daughters of the American Revolution. The S.A.R. began accepting members over twenty years ago and the D.A.R accepted the first member in May 2019 (#A213613). Joseph joined the army in 1777 and was listed as a private in Walker's Company, Colonel James Hogan's 7th regiment, North Carolina Continental Line. It appears he was mustered out in October 1777. Joseph actual birth year is not known but because he had children who were under twenty-one at the time of his death and because he was probably a young man when he joined the Continental Army, the year 1755 has been traditionally suggested.

Joseph's will stated that if any of his children had to be apprenticed out that they should be raised by Quakers. Joseph seems to have had good relations with the Quakers who lived in northern Randolph County, though it is evident he was not a Quaker himself, as one of his daughters, Sarah,married Peter Rich, a birthright Quaker who was expelled by the Quakers for "marrying out."

In spite of many Internet postings that purport to give his ancestry, the parents of Joseph Sanders of Randolph County are unknown. He was not the son of the John Sanders who died in 1772 in Isle of Wight County, Virginia. That John Sanders had a son named Joseph but the Joseph of Isle of Wight remained in Virginia, dying there about 1814.

DNA tests of the descendants of Joseph Sanders of Randolph County show that he was closely related to William Sanders (1740-1789) of Chatham County, North Carolina. Joseph and William may very well have been brothers. William and Joseph may be sons of the George Sanders who lived in Anson County before it was split among other counties. George was a neighbor to the Reverend Moses Sanders. Both William and Joseph named one of their sons George. Joseph and William are also shown by Y-DNA tests to be related to the John Saunders/Elizabeth Hancock line of Goochland County, Virginia. The Joseph Saunders born on March 1, 1759 to John and Elizabeth was probably a cousin or nephew to Joseph of Randolph. It is unlikely that Joseph, born in Goochland in 1759 and the son of John and Elizabeth, is the same person as Joseph of Randolph County, North Carolina, because this theory would require that that the eighteen year of son of John and Elizabeth leave Virginia to join the Army in North Carolina when he could just as easily have joined in Virginia, as his brother John did.

Joseph Sanders of Randolph was not related to the Isaac Saunders line of Randolph even though most of his children married children or grandchildren of Isaac. The DNA tests also show that Joseph and William were not related to the descendants of John Sanders of Nansemond and Isle of Wight, contrary to what is given in many family trees on the Internet. There is also no evidence, either documentary or DNA, that the Goochland/Randolph/Chatham Sanders were related to the line of the surgeon, Edward Saunders, who arrived in Virginia on the ship "Safety" in 1635(this claim is frequently made in Internet family trees).

The maiden name of Joseph's wife Rebecca is also unknown. There is no documentation whatsoever that her maiden name was Watson or that she was the daughter of Charles Watson and Sarah Beckworth who married in 1764 in Edgecombe County. In fact, there seems to be no evidence at all that Charles and Sarah had a daughter named Rebecca and if they did, that daughter would have been too young to have married Joseph Sanders in 1778. Further, the Watson family lived in Edgecombe County, not in Randolph County. That dozens of family trees make the claim that Joseph married Rebecca Watson is not proof of anything.

I think the Watson theory arose when someone came across the legitimate record that a man named Joseph Sanders married a Rebecca Watson in 1846 in Wilkes County and that person confused the Joseph Sanders of Wilkes County with the Joseph Sanders who died over forty years previously in Randolph County.

Since one of the sons of Joseph and Rebecca was named George McGuire Sanders,I think it is possible and even likely that Rebecca's maiden name was McGuire but even this is speculation. There was a McGuire family that lived in Goochland County, Virginia, in the 1750s and it is documented that some members of the family did move to Randolph County, North Carolina. This seems to be our only clue regarding the maiden name of Rebecca Sanders.

We have no documentation about Rebecca, the wife of Joseph Sanders, except that she is mentioned in Joseph's will and in the settlement of his estate in 1811.

Though it is likely that Rebecca died and is buried on the family property with her husband in Randolph County, Rebecca may have lived until after 1830. On the 1830 census of Jackson County, Alabama, there is a 70-79 year old female living in the household of George McGuire Sanders. Possibly, this is his mother, Rebecca Sanders.

Family tradition among Joseph's descendants is that the family was of Scottish or Irish ancestry. Joseph himself was probably at least a couple of generations removed from the immigrant ancestor.
(Memorial written by Gary B. Sanders, Joseph's third great grandson.)

Family Members

Gravesite Details unmarked grave family land southwest Randolph County, North Carolina near Montgomery County line


See more Sanders memorials in:

Sponsor and Remove Ads


  • Created by: Gary B. Sanders
  • Added: 29 Nov 2010
  • Find a Grave Memorial 62313685
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Joseph Sanders (1755–Mar 1803), Find a Grave Memorial no. 62313685, ; Maintained by Gary B. Sanders (contributor 47044379) Unknown.