Queen Family - North Carolina Ancestry

Queen Family North Carolina

Queen Family - North Carolina
   In 1935 Claude Henry Queen married Mary Jane Prince, thus joining two of  the Appalachian mountain's most gifted music making families together, starting another generation of all musical children. Learning ballads, guitar, banjo and fiddle tunes from their forefathers, The Queen Family of North Carolina continues the tradition of playing and singing the old time southern Appalachian mountain folk music.
Queen Coat of Arms
Queen Coat of Arms
  Individual surnames originated for the purpose of more specific identification. The four primary sources were: occupation, location, father's name, or personal characteristics. The surname Queen appears to be occupational in origin, and is believed to be associated with the English, meaning "one who played the part of a queen in a play or pageant."

Our Colonial Queen Family Ancestry

   Our colonial ancestor "old" William Queen (born ca. 1720) came to North Carolina from Virginia around 1750. His oldest son William Lewis Queen was born in VA (ca. 1749) . Before 1754 William and his wife Margaret were in Bladen Co. , NC (southeastern NC).
A land survey of that year mentions "the place on Bear Creek  where William Queen lived." By the fall of 1754 William had already moved west into Anson Co. , North Carolina. The following summer he began to purchase the first of his land tracts on the Little River of the Pee Dee in Anson County.

  William Queen and his family remained in this locale for about twelve years before he began selling off land tracts in preparation  for another move west into Wilkes County, Georgia where he lived during the Revolutionary War. The Georgia Records of the Court of Land Commissioners show "ceded lands" reserved for William Queen, a wife, a son, and two daughters in 1773-75. Many years later his son Samuel states that  William enrolled him as a ranger in the GA Militia at the commencement of hostilities in that area in 1778. A Wilkes County Georgia tax digest of 1785 shows 278 acres for a William Queen, Franklin Co.

   It appears that shortly after the Revolutionary War William Queen moved his family back into North Carolina. For several years afterwards he appears on land records in Randolph and Rutherford Counties, NC. William Queen died in NC (probably Rutherford Co.) early in 1801. William and Margaret had at least five children: William Lewis (born ca.1749) Samuel (born ca. 1759 in NC) Timothy, and two daughters not named.

   Our ancestor, Samuel Queen was most likely born in Anson County, North Carolina about 1759. Samuel, as was mentioned, was volunteered in the GA Militia in 1788. He was 19 years old. He served on the continental line as a minute man and ranger under Col. Elijah Clark. Samuel volunteered from Wilkes Co. GA and served under Gen. Lincoln during the seige of Savannah. After the seige he "was sometimes at home and sometimes marching about after Tories and Indians." Later "I returned into the service of the United States again in the fall of 1781 as a substitute for Timothy Queen (his brother) to perform... against the Creek Indians and Tories..." Samuel Queen gave this detailed account of his service in application for his pension dated Sept. 1834.

    Samuel Queen had moved back to NC after the war. In 1788 he married Dicey Rolls in Rutherford County, NC. In 1808 Samuel Queen received a 100 acre Land Grant located in what was then Buncombe Co. but now Henderson County at the mouth of a tributary of the South Fork of Mills River which at the time was known as Ireland's Mill Creek, but which subsequently came to be known as Queen's Creek. The area embraced by the Grant is comparatively flat and is locally regarded as excellent farm land. By deed dated May 17, 1824 Samuel sold his Queen's Creek tract. The deed cited that the grantor lived in Haywood County, NC which would seem to confirm family tradition that Samuel came to Caney Fork early in the 19th century and settled on John's Creek (now in present Jackson Co. near Cullowhee, NC). Samuel and Dicey had at least seven children.

William Lewis and John R. Queen
William Lewis and John R. Queen
     The Samuel and Dicey line connects to us through their son, John R. Queen. John R. Queen lived his adult life in the John's Creek Caney Fork section of Jackson Co., NC. "About 1829 John walked over the mountains from Mills River with a rifle, axe, pot, and a dog to claim land above his brother and to marry Nathan Coward's sister, Mary." (from the History of Jackson County). John R. Queen and Mary "Polly" Coward  had at least three children: Nancy, Martha, and our ancestor John Lewis (commonly called "Luke").

John Lewis Queen
John Lewis Queen "Luke"
     John R.'s son, John Lewis Queen also known as "Luke" was born June 29, 1830. In 1853 John Lewis married Lucinda Brown. They had a large family and many of their descendants still live on John's Creek. Luke was a minister of John's Creek Church near East Laporte. He also served as magistrate in the Caney Fork Township, helped with the singing schools, and supported his family by farming and hunting.

    "Luke's" son Albert Henson Queen (born March 6, 1879) married Ellen E. Brown. Albert and Ellen lived all their life on John's Creek in Jackson County, NC. Albert  made a living by farming the land his forefathers had already somewhat tamed. Albert and his brother Reuben were some of the best of the the early mountain musicians in this section. They played homemade fretless banjos strung
with waxed twine, sang mountain songs, and had a good time living in the mountains. Albert and Ellen had four children: Mary Queen, Lewis Queen, John R. Queen, and their youngest son, our dad Claude Henry Queen (born 1916).

  We gratefully acknowledge the efforts of family members and others for their work to make this historic writing on the Queen's of North Carolina possible. I hope you find it interesting, and with joint efforts we will continue to learn more about our Queen Family.

  These photographs here of William, John R. and Luke Queen are copies we made from the original large pictures that have been in our Queen Family possession since they were made, handed to us by the old folks. These photos have also made their way into Ancestry.Com

   If you have information or comments regarding our Queen family ancestor's, please feel free to send  email to: Henry Queen.


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