John Washington

John Washington

Death 1837 (aged 69–70)
Burial New Bern, Craven County, North Carolina, USA
Memorial ID 74906642 · View Source
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John Washington was born in 1769, some sources stating in Hillsborough, Orange Co, NC, but no records of his early life have been found by this researcher to confirm his place of birth. He is first found in Lenoir County before 1795, along with his cousin Nicholson, and this seems to be the first record of the Washington name in Lenoir County. By the time he died in 1837, John Washington had accumulated land and wealth all over the state including Kinston, Lenoir County; Craven County; Caswell County; Pitt County; Waynesboro, Wayne County; and Smithfield, Johnston County. Early records ca. 1795 from Lenoir County indicate John was a liquor retailer, and may have had a tavern or inn near Kinston.

What is known for certain is John Washington married Elizabeth "Betsy" Heritage Cobb in about 1787, daughter of Capt. Jesee Co., Sr. or Goochland, VA who came to Lenoir County, NC and married Elizabeth Heritage, and established "Harmony Hall" plantation near Kinston.

John Washington purchased "the Hill" (a/k/a Vernon Hill), in Lenoir County, which was the first land grant of Gov. Caswell.

John & Betsy would become parents 11 known surviving children.

* George Washington (ca. 1798)
* Col. John Cobb Washington (1801-1887)
* James Augustus Washington, MD (1803-1847)
* Elizabeth Washington (1805-died young)
* Elizabeth "Eliza" Heritage Washington (1808-1890)
* Sarah Elizabeth J. Washington (1810-1817)
* Susanna Anna Washington (1810-1811)
* Ann Mary Washington (1814-1864)
* Susan Washington Graham
* George Washington (1818-1894)
* Mary Washington (1824-1880)

Two other children, William & Franklin Washington, have also been reported to be children of John & Betsy, but this researcher was unable to confirm.

John Washington was known as a large cotton planter in Eastern North Carolina, and served as a commissioner of Kinston in 1806 and 1809; and postmaster in 1823.

John Washington died in New Bern in 1837 at about age 69. His wife, Betsy Cobb Washington, survived him 11 years, passing in 1848 at age 67.

As for his children, son, Col. John Cobb Washington inherited "the Hill" (Vernon Plantation) upon his parents death,and lived there his entire life, and is believed buried on the grounds. John C. Washington, like his father, was a very prominent man. He was the major contractor for the railroad from Raleigh to New Bern when it was built. In or about 1861, he developed severe rheumatoid arthritis and suffered terribly from it for the rest of his life, and contributed to his inability to keep up with the estate after the war and during the troubled reconstruction era. He eventually had lost the property, having mortgaged it to his sister, Eliza Washington Grist Knox. Like other substantial planters of his generation, he went from being one of the wealthiest men in Lenoir County to one of the poorest. John C. Washington married three times, and had 2 known children by his first wife, Mary Ann G. Bond whom he married in 1827. After Mary's death he married Susan Smith Madison Peyton; and then Julia Peyton.

Son, James Augustus Washington (1803-1847) became a physician and removed to New York City. He married Anna White Constable in 1834,from a prominent Philadelphia family. John died in New York in 1847 at age 44 leaving a wife and 6 children.

Elizabeth "Eliza" Heritage Washington (1808-1890) married (1st) Richard Grist and (2nd) Dr. Reuben Knox and had children by both husbands.

Ann Mary Washington (1814-1864) married James West Bryan and was mother to 5 known children.

Susan/Susannah Sarah Washington married Gov. William Alexander Graham and was mother to 10 known children.

George Washington (1818-1894) married Anna Catherine Denison and removed to St. Augustine, FL. He died in Savannah in 1894. He, along with older brother John Cobb Washington, founded a shoe manufacturing facility in Kinston prior the Civil War, one of the earliest of its kind in the area.

Mary Washington (1824-1880) married Joseph Montrose Graham and reportedly die din Camden, Arkansas.


In their memory
Plant Memorial Trees


  • Created by: pbfries
  • Added: 14 Aug 2011
  • Find a Grave Memorial 74906642
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for John Washington (1767–1837), Find a Grave Memorial no. 74906642, citing Cedar Grove Cemetery, New Bern, Craven County, North Carolina, USA ; Maintained by pbfries (contributor 46951237) .