The Hanks Family History


The Hanks Family Travels

Thomas Hanks arrived in Virginia in 1654. He lived at the intersection of Richmond, Lancaster and Northumberland Cos. His son, William I and grandson, William II, also lived in Richmond Co. Richard Hanks was born in 1723 and throughout his life moved west and south through Virginia, finally moving into North Carolina. His son, Joshua Hanks grew up and was married in North Carolina before moving into Virginia in Grayson County. Joshua's daughter Ruth lived in Carroll County where she married John Vaughn.




Hankes, Tho  n.a.;      Virginia,            1654                2772                p.145



Excerpt from The Hanks Family of Virginia and Westward by Adin Baber


John Hanks came up from below decks of the sailing vessel, away from the stench of the constant bilge, as her sails were lowered and furled, and gazed upon this Faire Land, the land of "In the Beginning" for the Hanks family of America.


Just so he came to Jamestown. Within a few years he patented 200 acres of land, as is the record in the very first Patent Book of the Colony of Virginia.* Other Hanks followed.


                                              John Hanks                     1623-1643

                                         George Hanks                     1633-1700

                                        Thomas Hanks                     1653-1675

                                      Robert Hanks & his                1661-1691

                                           wife, Margaret


         *The name is spelled "Huck" in one place, Aug. 15, 1637.




From the historic and heroic settlement of Colonial Virginia at Jamestown, the settlers first moved up the James River, and northerly along the coasts, and into the navigable streams, the York, the Rappahannock, and the Potomac Rivers.


This is the Tidewater country; a land of undulating tree covered ridges alternating with undrained swamps of scrub and vine whence the waters sluggishly drained into the nearby rivers when the tide ran out into Chesapeake Bay.


When the land was cleared the virgin soil was fairly fertile and the production of tobacco developed as the basic crop. The climate was mild and conditions favorable. The use of tobacco, learned from the Indians, became a fad and a habit and an addiction, and the demand for it increased enormously. It was exported to England in exchange for goods and was legal tender in the Colony for payments of pounds, shillings, and pence.


The parallel running rivers afforded easy access for the light draft sailing vessels to come upstream for their cargoes. Many of the planters had their own landing places and their own rolling roads. By tedious process the tobacco was cured and packed into huge casks for shipment, and rolled to the wharves.


The growing, processing, and transportation of tobacco entailed hard hand labor and laborers were scarce in Colonial Virginia before the introduction of slavery.  It became the practice of the planters to pay the captains of the ships the price of passage for such of the immigrants, who had been deported from England, or had agreed to sell their own service for a period of seven years, to be transported to the colonies.  In this way the planters obtained a guaranteed source of labor.  In addition they received a certificate of award for fifty acres of land for each new inhabitant brought in.


The certificates were negotiable and were usually accumulated as script until an area larger than fifty acres could be entered and patented.  Mr. Thomas Fowke of Westmoreland County received such certificates.  One of them was for the passage of Thomas Hanckes.*


*Hanks is variously spelled in the early records: Hanckes, Hancks, Hanck, Hanc, Hank. Bona fide signatures on extant papers are generally signed plain Hanks, with occasional Hancks. The Hank and Hawks spelling are of entirely different families, and not Hanks.





Thomas Hanckes himself purchased certificates or received them for the transportation of two people, and on the 16th day of February 1653 received a patent for


"One hundred acres of land Situate in Gloucester County in the Woods upon the North East Side of a Swamp upon the South East Side of Mattapony River. .2


Within two years Thomas Hanckes had patented over a thousand acres and within the next ten years he increased his holdings to over two thousand acres of land. Obviously he was a good operator. This land was above present West Point on the York River and extended northward to the south bank of the Rappahannock River. This may have given him the advantage of a port of entry and exit upon his own land.


On April 8, 1674 Thomas Hanckes and Cornelius Chessman received a patent for 260 acres, part in Glocester and part in New Kent Counties . . . adjoining a former tract of said Hanckes whereon he now liveth. . ." This is the last entry of record pertaining to Thomas Hanckes. There are no Grantee nor probate records to show what became of his land. There is no record of his family or of his death.


It has been conjectured that his name and property disappeared during the troubled times of the Bacon Rebellion and it may very well have been. On the route of an antient road from the Rappahannock River to the Falls of the James River, now Route 360, near the boundary line of Essex and King and Queen Counties, stands an historical marker, which reads:




At Piscataway, near here, the northern followers of Bacon the rebel assembled in 1676.

On July 10, 1676 an action was fought with Governor Berkeley's supporters, some of whom were killed and wounded. Several houses were burned. Passing here the rebels marched south to the Pamunkey River, where they joined their leader, Bacon.


2Patent; Book 3, P 369


3Barton, Lineage of Lincoln, p 165



The Virginia Hanks in the Census Records


Virginia In 1720: A Reconstructed Census

Hancks, William, Richmond Co., 10:163



Virginia In 1740: A Reconstructed Census


            Ann.                 Richmond Co., North Farnham,            095

            Catherine.         Richmond Co.,                                     097

            Charlotte.         Richmond Co., North Farnham,            095

            Elijah.               Richmond Co., North Farnham,            095

            John.                Richmond Co.                                      097

            Luke.               Richmond Co.                                      097

            Sarah.              Richmond Co., North Farnham,            095

            William.            Richmond Co.                                      097

            William.            Richmond Co., North Farnham,            095

Hanks (?)

            Thomas.  Princess Anne, 093



Virginia In 1760: A Reconstructed Census


            Abraham.         Amelia Co.       32:64

            Joseph              Amelia Co.       32:64

            Richard            Amelia Co.       26:313, 32:47

            Sarah               Lancaster Co.   67:61

            William             Amelia Co.       32:19  



1787 Montgomery Co., VA Personal Property Tax Lists-List “A”

Hanks, Joshua  Self      0          0          0          3          4



1850 Carroll Co., VA  Census: Annotated by John P. Alderman

The annotation was done by a Carroll Co. historian and is found in the Virginia Room of the Roanoke City Library in Roanoke, VA.

362.  Joshua Hanks, Jr.45       Farmer    $3000 b.. VA

            Roseyman        45                                                            

            Martin              17        Farmer                                         

            Creed               12                                                            

            Friel                 11                                                            

            Eliza                 10                                                            

            Orville                8                                                            

         Joshua Hanks, Sr. 91       Farmer                                         

Joshua Hanks, Sr. was the son of Richard and Mary (Hinds) Hanks.  He married Ruth Bryant (1764-1840) in 1784 in Surry Co., NC.  They settled on Cole Creek in the early days of the county and raised a family of about sixteen.  Joshua held a variety of offices in old Grayson County and was still active almost to the time of the census.  He died in 1854.  Joshua, Jr., one of the younger children, married Rosamond Carrico (1807-1891) daughter of William and Jane (Taylor) Carrico.  He also lived on Cole Creek and there was an older daughter, married and gone at the time of the census.  Young Joshua died in 1853.



565. William Hanks      66        Farmer             $500                b. VA

            Nancy              61       

            George W.       18

Schuyler, Ann               14                                                            NC 

William (died in 1868) was the son of Joshua and Ruth (Bryant) Hanks, probably born on Cole Creek not long after his father came here.  He was married four times.  The first wife’s name is unknown.  The second was Dicey Tucker whom he married in 1810 in Surry Co., NC.  Nancy, shown here, was probably the daughter of Abel and Elizabeth (Sims) Carrico; they were married in 1820, and after her death he remarried in 1863, Elizabeth Cain.  There appears to have been ten children by the four marriages.



646. Solomon Hanks    25        Farmer                                     b. VA

            Susan               24                                                            NC

            Selah                  4       

            Nancy              3/12

His name is often given as Sylvanus Hanks.  He was the son of William and Nancy (Carrico) Hanks, born some earlier than his age here indicates.  I have never learned who Susan was.  There were six children.



647. Enoch Hanks        26        Farmer             $200                b. VA

            Delah               50                                                            NC

            Polly                 17                                                            VA

Stephens, William O.      9                                                            NC

This is the family of John Hanks, deceased son of Joshua and Ruth (Bryant) Hanks.  John’s wife, Delia, was the daughter of William and Jane (Taylor) Carrico, born in NC just before her people moved to Stephens Creek in Grayson.  They married a little before 1820 and John died about 1834, leaving Delia with six small children.



648. Henry L. Hanks    24        Farmer             $200                b. VA

            Luraney            19

Henry was one of the children of John and Delia (Carrico) Hanks.  He married Lurana Felts in 1849 in Surry Co., NC.  Her parents were Jordan and Sarah (Kester) Felts; her name is sometimes given as Irena and she married Henry W. Moore in 1868.  Henry Hanks was killed in the battle near Staunton in 1864.



786.  Jane Hanks          50                                $600                b. NC

            Edward            28        Farmer                                         VA

            Mahaley           23

            Leroy               21        Farmer

            Canoy              20        Farmer

            Hugh                18        Farmer

            Thomas            16        Farmer

            Susan               13

This is Thomas Hanks’ widow and children.  Thomas (1797-1840) was the child of Joshua and Ruth (Bryant) Hanks.  He married Jane Moore in 1819 in Surry Co., NC.  There were eight children.  Jane, born in 1799, died in 1852.  Most of the children left here.








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