My aunt gave me a copy of the book The Fannin'g' Family and Their Kin by Lawrence R. Fanning. From it I have learned a great deal about my Fanning roots. Idella "Ida" Fanning begins my branch into the Fanning family. She was born about 1856 in South Carolina. Her husband was William Patrick "Bill" Caughman. They were my third maternal great-grandparents. Abraham Fanning was Ida's paternal great-grandfather. It is his descendants to which the majority of information on these pages pertain.
Abraham's parents were James and Elizabeth Fanning. James is the first known ancestors in South Carolina. His parents are unknown however, one of his deeds, listed under Memorial Records, shows his name as James Fanning, Jr. James was probably born around 1715. It is believed that he died sometime after 1804. James and Elizabeth had at least five children, all boys. They were James Fannin, November 28, 1739-November 04, 1808, John Fanning born about 1741, David Fanning born about 1755, Jacob Fanning born about 1760 and Abraham.
James Fannin moved to Georgia and married Elizabeth. He became wealthy and prominent and was the grandfather of James Walker Fannin who became famous at Goliad, Texas. Fannin Counties in Georgia and Texas are named in his honor.
John was a colonel and American Loyalist. From various records we are told that he was a notorious marauder and was banished from the state. Memorial Records show that he had a grant of 200 acres in Craven County, N.C. on the north side of the Broad River above James Fanning's land. This area was later annexed to South Carolina. There is no further record of his family.
Even though it has not been proven, there is speculation that Jacob might have been the fourth son of James instead of David. He and John were witnesses to James Fanning's deed in 1773.
Abraham Fanning is the only known child of his father who remained in South Carolina. In the 1790 census, Abraham was living in the Orangeburg District with is family, which consisted of two males over sixteen, three under sixteen, one female and two slaves. His will, dated in 1810, names all of his sons except Burton and Jesse, so it is assumed that they were not of age at that time. From several family records we are told that there were four children by the first marriage and three by the second. However, from information obtained from descendants of Jacob, Abraham II and Burton, it is a family tradition that they were whole brothers, leaving half-brothers in South Carolina. That would leave Jesse to be by the first marriage which is highly unlikely. Then it came to be assumed that there were three by the first marriage and four by the second. It is known that Abraham lived in the upper part of South Carolina until at least 1770. He was living in Orangeburg District in 1790 and is known to have remarried here during the balance of his life. In 1791 he received a land grant of 130 acres. In the Mills Atlas published in 1820 is shown Fannin's mill on Goodland Swamp near Salley, SC. This would have been Abraham's Mill. In the same vicinity is shown Abrams Branch, probably named for him. In the Dean Swamp Church Cemetery is a fenced plot where Abraham is buried. Here lies the progenitor of all of the Fanning's in this area.
Abraham Fanning's stone reads-Pioneer SC son of James and Elizabeth Fanning. Husband of Narcissa McColphen and Betty Burton. ( AKA son BURTON Fanning).