Martin Slaughter Davenport (c1769 – 1851/2)

Martin Slaughter Davenport was probably born about 1769 in Cumberland County, Virginia.  He was apparently the first son of David Davenport’s second marriage to Molly Slaughter, the daughter of Martin Slaughter.   (He apparently overstated his age in the 1850 census.)  He had reached 16 by 1785, for on 22 May 1786 his father was cited for not including him as a tithable.1  The following year David Davenport was charged with an unnamed tithable aged 16 to 21, which must have been Martin.  He next appears as surety for the marriage of Martha Bowles and William Moore on 4 December 1788.2  He also witnessed his father’s 1789 deed.  His first appearance in the tax lists was in 1793, when he was taxed on one horse.  He was subsequently listed in the Cumberland tax lists through 1799, when he evidently moved to Powhatan County to teach school.  He appears on the Powhatan County tax list of 1801.

He married Polly Forest Nunnally on 16 April 1800 in Powhatan County.  Polly was the eldest child of John Nunnally and Susan Burton, who moved to Georgia at about the same time Martin did.  John Nunnally died in Clarke County, Georgia in 1825.

His father’s will named him one of three executors.  Martin, however, became the sole executor, probably a thankless task given the horde of outstanding debts.3   He then returned to Cumberland County where he appears on the tax lists from 1803 through 1806.  Martin was guardian of his sister Frances Benson Davenport and apparently took her to Georgia with him.4   He appears in several court records over the next three years, mainly associated with his father’s debts.

Just before his death, David Davenport had deeded his remaining Cumberland County land to his son “Martin Slaughter Davenport”.5   Two months after his father’s death, Martin obtained a deed for the same land from his step-brother William Davenport to perfect his title.6  On 26 May 1806, Martin S. Davenport and his wife Polly F. Davenport sold the 125 acres.7   Having closed the estate, they apparently left for Georgia, since Martin is not on the 1807 Cumberland tax list.  He apparently joined several of his cousins who had settled in and around Oglethorpe County.  His younger sister Frances, for whom he was guardian, was married in Oglethorpe County, Georgia in 1807.

He was in Oglethorpe County, Georgia by 1814, but had probably moved there after selling his land in 1806.   Note that his uncle James Davenport and most of his family had moved to Oglethorpe County several years earlier.  He appears there in 1820 heading a household of twelve.  ((Oglethorpe County 1820 census, p193:  Martin S. Davenport 411201-11010.))  At some point he was settled in Clarke County, for he drew Lot 165 in Murray County in  the second section of the Cherokee Lands Lottery of 1832 while a resident of Clarke County.

The 1840 census shows Martin S. Davenport in Clarke County with four of his sons.  ((Clarke County 1840 census, p203:  M. S. Davenport 000010001-00000001-2))  One son, apparently Henry, remained in the household and four older sons were enumerated nearby.  In the 1850 census, Martin S. Davenport, age 84, is in the household of his son Moses N. Davenport in Clarke County.  His will was dated 27 October 1851 and recorded in Clarke County, Georgia on 2 February 1852.8

  1. Susan A. Davenport who was married to a Prince at the time of her father’s will.  She may have been the wife of Garland Prince.
  2. John A. Davenport (c1805 – ?)  was apparently the same person who married Martha F. Simmons in Pike County, Georgia on 16 December 1832.  That person is the one in the 1850 Pike County census, age 45.
  3. James B. Davenport  (? – ?)  He appears in the 1840 census of Clarke County a few names from his father and brothers.9
  4. Moses N. Davenport (c1803 – 1869)  He married Mary E. Fullilove on 17 December 1828 in Clarke County, and had six known children.  He appears three names from his father in 1840.10  The 1850 census of Clarke County gives his age as 47.  His father, age 84, was also in the household.   He and Mary were still in Clarke County in 1860.  The 1870 mortality census for Clarke County recorded his death in July 1869.
  5. Jesse Davenport (? – ?)  Some think he was the same person who married Susan Hale on 29 June 1843.  That person seems more likely to have been the son of a Henry Davenport.  The 1850 census of Clarke County shows him, age 32, with eldest child named Henry and a brother-in-law in the household, living near a Henry Davenport, age 66.
  6. Presley G. Davenport (c1805 – 1890)  See separate page.
  7. Catherine Davenport  (c1813 – aft1880)  She married Ellington Credille on 4 January 1831 in Clarke County, Georgia.  Ellington Credille was the brother of Sarah Ann Credille, wife of Presley G. Davenport.  They are listed in the 1840 Henry County census, Catherine aged 20-30, with two sons and one daughter all under 5.  On 8 December 1842, Martin S. Davenport made a deed of gift of two slaves to his son Presley G. Davenport to be held in trust by “my son-in-law, Ellington Credille.”11   Ellington Credille was dead by December 1849 when an estate sale was held.12   On 16 May 1850 Moses Davenport signed a receipt for the surviving issue of the slaves in trust for Presley Davenport “from Catharine Davenport, administrator of the estate of Ellington Criddle, deceased.”13   Catherine and seven children are enumerated in the 1850 census of Henry County.  Catherine did not remarry and remained in Henry County, appearing as head of household in 1860 (with five of her children still at home), 1870, and 1880.
  8. Henry S. Davenport (c1819 – ?) was apparently the same person who married Sarah E. Kilpatrick in Pike County, Georgia on 13 November 1838.  He appears adjacent to his father in the 1840 census.14   He is apparently the H. S. Davenport, physician, in the 1850 census of Forsyth County, Georgia.  He was not further traced.
  1. Cumberland County Court Orders 14, p43. []
  2. Cumberland County Marriages, p94. []
  3. Cumberland County Court Orders 18, p334. []
  4. Cumberland County Court Orders 18, p339. []
  5. Cumberland County Deed Book 9, p164. []
  6. Cumberland County Deed Book 7, p263. []
  7. Cumberland County Deed Book 10, p198. []
  8. Clarke County Will Book C, p182-184. []
  9. Clarke County 1840 census, p204:  James B. Davenport 001001-000001-3. []
  10. Clarke County 1840 census, p203:  M. N. Davenport 001001-10101-5 []
  11. Clarke County Deed Book K, p129 []
  12. Clarke County Register of Sales, Book C, p167. []
  13. Henry County Deed Book M, p317. []
  14. Clarke County 1840 census, p203:  H. L. Davenport 00001-0001-2 []