My Dotson Ancestors

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My Dotson Ancestors


Orville Clyde Dotson  

Orville Clyde Dotson, my father, was born August 5, 1911 in Wirt County, West Virginia and died in Manatee County, Florida on December 11, 2002, and is buried at Bethany Baptist Church Cemetery in Manatee County Florida.  He grew up in Wirt County on a farm on Spring Creek near the Wirt and Roane county lines.  He attended elementary school in the neighborhood, and when he was older he joined the Civilian Conservation Corps and worked as a firefighter in northern California.   After he met my mother, he decided to complete his high school education, then went on to Glenville Teachers College and finally achieved a master's degree from West Virginia University.  He taught school in West Virginia, Ohio and Florida and was an elementary school principal in Lancaster, Ohio.. 

He wrote the following about his early years.  "I, Orville Clyde Dotson, fifth son of William Dountain and Mary Emma (Miller) Dotson was born on Saturday, August 5, 1911, about 2 P.M. on a rainy afternoon, in the same old, but rebuilt, log house in which my mother was born 30 years before.

One of the Old Homesteads

Although the address was Palestine (Wirt Co.) WV, the old house was nearer Lucille, WV, and in the Buffalo community at the head of Falling Timber and Thorn's Run. In the spring of 1916, after our first sister, Pearl, was born, we moved a very short distance into a new home on an adjoining farm. We lived there until March 25, 1917, when we moved - all nine of us: Dad, Mom, six boys and one girl - to Grandfather Dotson's farm on Spring Creek, south Wirt County, about one mile from the Roane County line. One more move in 1925 to an adjoining farm and a newer and more comfortable house occurred after a brother, Quentin was born, 1919, another brother, Darrell, 1921, and the last of the children, a sister, Evelyn was born in 1923. At the time Sarah Evelyn was born, 1923, the oldest brother, William (Bill) was away from home, and we were never all at home together until 1938, and once again at Dad's and mothers Golden Wedding Anniversary in 1952.

Grandfather Amos died in January 1929. He had owned and run a country general store for more than 25 years, but closed it out when we moved to the new house on Spring Creek. During the years 1917-1925, when I attended Corbitt elementary (1 room; 8 grades) school, there were many families living on Beaver Dam run and within walking distance of Corbitt School and my grandfather's store. I recall that at one time, Corbitt had an enrollment of 41 students. My brother Harry taught a term there when I was in the 5th grade. I attended one year after I received my 8th grade diploma in 1925. My parents thought I was too young to go to high school, and the nearest high school was at Elizabeth, 17 miles away. There were no school busses, and few paved roads. State Route 14 was paved from Blue Goose (6 miles away) to Reedy, Roane Co. (7 miles away) in 1914. That is still the closest State Route to the old home place. I rode in my first automobile the year the United States entered World War I and probably saw my first airplane a few years later. In 1930 I spent my summer working with Uncle Delbert Miller on his farm near Bremen, Ohio."

Read Full Autobiography of Orville Clyde Dotson about his life on Spring Creek

Read about each of the Children of William Dountain and Mary Emma Miller Dotson


1938 Reunion 

Front Row:  Left to Right - Sarah Evelyn Dotson-Newlon (11 May 1923 - 3 May 1995), Darrell Paul Dotson (22 Sep 1921 - 22 July 2001), Ferrell Quentin Dotson (12 Nov 1919 - 7 Nov 2000), Roberta Pearl Dotson-DeQuasie (1 Jan 1916 - 23 Mar 2002), Charles Henry Dotson (24 Jan 1914 - 21 May 2003)

Back Row:  Left to Right - Orville Clyde Dotson (5 Aug 1911 - 11 Dec 2002), Omer Claire Dotson (24 Mar 1909 - 2 Jan 1970),   Delbert Victor Dotson (29 Sep 1906 - 6 Nov 1988), Harry Thorne Dotson (1 Jan 1905 - 21 Aug 1977), William Amos Dotson (28 May 1903 - 30 Apr 1974).

1952 Wedding Anniversary William Dountain and Mary Emma Miller Dotson and Children

Front Row:  Left to Right - Orville Clyde Dotson, Harry Thorne Dotson, Charles Henry Dotson, Mary Emma Miller Dotson, William Dountain Dotson, William Amos Dotson, Ferrell Quentin Dotson

Back Row:  Left to Right - Darrell Paul Dotson, Roberta Pearl Dotson-DeQuasie, Sarah Evelyn Dotson-Newlon, Delbert Victor Dotson.




William Dountain Dotson was my grandfather.  He was born in Wirt County, West Virginia June 15, 1883 and died in Parkersburg, Wood County, West Virginia on January 12, 1969.  He is buried in Hodam Cemetery in Roane County, West Virginia. 

On July 26, 1896 a plot of ground was deeded to church trustees to build McCutcheon Chapel. Trustees at the time were: James McCutcheon, EC McCutcheon, W A McCutcheon, Jacob Conrad and Amos A Dotson, William's father . At the dedication ceremony of the new church, one of the young men who went forth to "serve the Lord", was William D Dotson, who became a Baptist minister. One of the early ministers of this church was Floyd Dunbar who performed the marriage of my grandfather and grandmother on June 10th, 1902.

 William Dountain and Mary Emma Miller Dotson about 1902

The 1910 census of Wirt County shows William D Dotson age 26, Emma M Dotson age 28, Willie A Dotson age 6, Hollie T age 5, Delbert V age 3 and Claire O age 1.

On Sept 12, 1918, he registered for draft for World War I while working as a carpenter at the Firestone Tire and Rubber Company in Akron Ohio. Draft registration shows him medium build, medium height with brown hair and blue eyes. His permanent home address showing as Sanoma, WV. He was shown as white, native born, and age 35. His date of birth is shown as June 15, 1883.

On August 28, 1925, he was ordained as a minister at the Rose Hill Baptist Church, previously known as the Beaver Dam Baptist Church.

Records of Mt William Church, where William Dotson later served as pastor, show many baptisms of members by him and also record of his own baptism on December 1911 by Rev Cochran. On June 23, 1935 MT William Baptist Church elected Rev W. D. Dotson as pastor for one year at same salary as previous year.

After his father died, he and his wife were farmers on the farm on Spring Creek, but he still continued to serve as a pastor to various congregations. He always rode horseback and never learned to drive a car.  The farm he inherited from his father was located at the point where Beaver Dam Creek and Spring Creek meet in Wirt Co, WV.

Obituary Jan 13, 1969 The Parkersburg Sentinel

"Rites Thursday for Rev W. D. Dodson"

Funeral services for the Rev. William D. Dotson, 85, of Spencer, Rt 4, who died Monday in the St. Joseph's Hospital will be conducted at 2:30 p.m. Thursday at the Gilboa Baptist Church near Reedy.  The Rev. Paul Morrison and the Rev Leon Strickland will officiate with burial to be in the Hodam Cemetery near Reedy.

Born in Wirt county, he was a son of the late Amos and Eveline Peck Dotson. The Rev. Mr. Dotson had served in the Baptist ministry in Wirt, Calhoun and Roane Counties for over 50 years. Also a retired farmer, he was a member of the Mt. William Baptist Church near Reedy.

Survivors include his widow, Mrs. Nora Criner Dotson, eight sons, William A Dotson of Mason, Harry T Dotson of Walnut Grove, CA, Delbert V Dotson of Parkersburg, Omer Clair Dotson of Reedsville, OH, Clyde Dotson of St. Petersburg, FL, Charles H. Dotson of Asheville NC, Quentin Dotson of Decatur, IL and the Rev. Darrell P Dotson of Portland, OR; two daughters, Mrs. Pearl DeQuaisie of Parkersburg and Mrs. Evelyn Newlon of Reedy; three step sons, Orland R Criner of Reedy, Harold S. Criner of Miami, FL and Robert L Criner of Bellefontaine, OH; two stepdaughters, Mrs. June Channels of Barberton, OH and Mrs. Carrie Williams of Reedy; three sisters, Mrs. Nettie Corbitt of Massillon, OH, Mrs. Dorothy Thornberry of Oakland, CA and Mrs. Orma Paul of Marysville, CA; 28 grandchildren;; 22 great-grandchildren, seven step-grandchildren and four step great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his first wife, Mrs. Mary Emma Miller Dotson, who died in 1955. Friends may call at the Vandale Funeral Home, Spencer.




Amos Asbury Dotson was my great grandfather.  Amos was born in November 19, 1849 in Ritchie County, Virginia and is first showing in 1850 census as part of household with father and mother. Hiram Dotson,  farmer, born in Virginia Age 26 Years, Susan age 23,  Maxfield, age 6,  Spencer 5,   Perry " 3 " " Amos " 7 months September 11th, 1850

He is still in his father's household in 1870 census. His family lived next door to Evaline Peck Harper and her husband Josiah. Evelyn & Josiah had no children.

Josiah Harper and Evaline Peck Harper Dotson

At one time Evaline was a schoolteacher and since she was 6 years older than Amos, she may have been his teacher. She was born in Wirt County but apparently moved to Ritchie County after her marriage to Josiah Harper. She is showing as a widow when she and Amos married November 16, 1876. According to his obituary, they moved to Wirt County right after marriage.  They probably  moved to be closer to her parents and help out with the Peck Farm.  Amos is showing in the 1880 Census of Wirt Co with wife Eveline age 36 and her parents, George and Drusella Peck,  Ann L Peck age 44, and their first born daughter, Ora N age 2.  Evaline's father died in 1886, and they may have inherited the family farm.  His wife Evaline died in 1899 after 23 years of marriage. Amos never remarried. He is showing in the 1900 census of Wirt Co, Spring Creek District with his 5 children ranging in age from 20 to 13.


Amos Dotson with his daughters Ora Nettie, Minnie Dorothy and Orma May and sons, Orville Hiram and William Dountain Dotson.


When he was about 66, his married son, William and family moved to the same farm.

My father, Orville Clyde Dotson, wrote the following about his grandfather:
"Grandpa had two farms. One 90-acre farm was south by southeast of the home farm. 83 acres bordered on a mile and a half of Spring Creek, stretching from the ford at the mouth of Beaver Dam Run in a great bend to the mouth of Cain's Run entering the creek from the opposite side.
He also had a grocery store. The store was a complete store for people from a remarkably large area. Some of the settlers his age called him Squire Dotson because he had been a justice of the peace at one time. He often took eggs, chickens, and rabbits in payment for what he sold, and gladly extended credit to anyone he knew.
He smoked a pipe and grew his own tobacco and cured it inside a building we called the granary that had been built for storing wheat and other grains to feed livestock and poultry. He put the tobacco leaves from a 'hand' of tobacco in a metal container and poured boiling water over it. Sometimes he would put some honey in the water and sometimes a sassafras root for flavor. He would let the tobacco simmer for awhile in the container. I never knew him to take any cough medicine or other drug store or doctor prescribed medicine. His cough medicine was horehound candy dissolved in whiskey. He sold the horehound candy in his store and kept his whiskey hidden away. I never saw him take a drink of intoxicating beverage. He was omnivorous in his eating and very clean in his habits.
While he never took any pills or liquid cures other his horehound cough medicine, he had reached the place where he was depending a lot on Yeager's liniment for his aging joints - especially when winter rolled around, and we didn't have any cattle pasturing on the hill farm. It was then when we started using the fireplace in the front room, and Granddad moved his bed out into the living room in front of the fire. Granddad would keep the fire going all night and would use the liniment on his joints.
Mother was a very light sleeper, and one night heard a crash and then a yell. She rushed into the room.
Grandpa had dropped the liniment bottle, and it broke on the stone hearth throwing the liniment on his flannel pajamas that in turn burst into flames. Grandpa may have gotten some minor burns, but there was little doubt that Emmie, as he called her, saved his life, and he was quick to tell her so.
He loved his grandchildren, especially when we would read to him from the daily newspaper, Cincinnati Post which we got a day late as it came from Parkersburg to Sanoma post office by river boat (Edith H) to the mouth of Spring Creek 6 miles away. Grandpa took a lot of magazines - Comfort, National Stockman and Farmer, Farm Journal, Literary Digest, and Saturday Evening Post along with a couple of hunting and fishing magazines.
He was a squirrel hunter, had a Savage .22 calibre rifle, the only one of its kind I ever saw, and a 12 gauge single shot shotgun. He loved to listen to the hounds chasing foxes at night. He, Dad, and two or three neighbor men would listen to the baying hounds, sometimes until almost daylight when the fox would finally go to his den. Each dog owner knew his hound by the tone of its bark. The men would have a fire built up, usually on top of Granddad's hill. I was glad when I was old enough for Dad to take me along with them. The men liked to brag about their own dogs, but I was always betting on Queen, my grandfather's black and tan foxhound."

Roberta Pearl Dotson DeQuaisie, wrote the following about her grandfather:
"We moved in with Grandpa Dotson on Spring Creek when I was still just a baby. He was delighted. We children didn't hang around Grandpa's country store much as he kept a pet black snake in what he called the ware room (to keep out the mice), and after he closed the store of an evening he would bring out the snake, wrap it around a yardstick and hold it up to the high shelves so it could crawl behind the groceries, or whatever, and dispense with the mice. It worked. He was a dear old man and all us kids really loved him. I remember when Darrell and Evelyn were small, Grandpa liked to have them comb and brush his hair. One day Mom and I came in to find Grandpa asleep in his chair with Darrell astride his neck brushing his hair. Mom said, "Darrell, get down from there. You will break Grandpa's neck." Darrell slid down and apparently saw the deep wrinkles in Grandpa's neck for the first time. He said, "Ebbie, bring me the Vicks salve quick. I've cracked it."

He died January 4, 1929, in the winter time. Grandson Clyde Dotson said they had to build a fire on the cemetery plot to thaw out the ground so they could dig the grave.

                        Amos Dotson                               Amos Asbury Dotson                          Evaline Peck Harper Dotson

Obituary from newspaper:   Amos A Dotson a prominent citizen of near Grace died Jan 4, aged 79 years 1 month and 15 days. He was born Nov. 19, 1849 at Toll Gate Ritchie Co. He was married to Evelyn Harper and moved to Wirt Co in 1876 where he has since lived. He was a member of the ME Church at McCutcheon's chapel for over 40 years. He is survived by two sons, W. D. Dotson where he died, Orville Dotson of Ivan, Wirt Co, three daughters Mrs. Nettie Corbitt of Akron, Mrs. Dorothy Thornberry Oakland Cal. and Mrs.Orma M Paul of Colorado. Mrs. Dotson died 30 years ago. Funeral services were conducted at Hill Grove by Rev B. H. Barnes and burial in the nearby cemetery the remains in charge of undertaker T. W. Dye of Reedy.



Hiram Sayre Dotson was my great great grandfather. 

From Hardesty's History of Ritchie County 1883:
"HIRAM S DOTSON was born and raised on the farm he now owns and carried on in Clay District, Ritchie County, and to which he has added three hundred acres cleared and improved by himself. His birth was on the 21st of Sept. 1823, Emanuel D and Hannah Dotson his parents. He has been twice married and the father of fifteen children. Susan his first wife was the mother of : Mansfield H., born Aug. 14, 1844; lives in Baltimore, MD; Spencer B., Dec 7, 1846, and Perry E., June 15, 1848, live in Ritchie County; Amos A., Nov 9, 1850, lives in Wirt Co; William F., May 7, 1852 and Alpheus R., May 22, 1854, lives in Ritchie Co; Mary E., Oct 4, 1856 and Alice Jane Nov. 19, 1858, live in Dodd. Co., this state; Granville, March 6, 1860 and Sarah J., Nov 9, 1862, live in Ritchie Co.; Susan Jane July 3, 1864, lives in Dodd. Co. The mother of these children died July 12, 1864 in the faith of the Christian, having been, with her husband, in the membership of the Methodist Episcopal Church since 1856. In Ritchie County in 1865, Hiram S Dotson was joined in wedlock with Melvina, daughter of Thomas and Anna Pool. She was born in Harrison County, June 13, 1835, and the children with her union with Mr. Dotson are: John W., born August 23, 1866; Daniel V., March 30, 1867; Thomas, Jan. 3, 1869; Anna B., Feb. 4, 1871. Mr. Dotson served two years in the Federal army, enlisting in Aug. 1862, in the 14th West Virginia Infantry, and received discharge for disability. Mansfield D., Spencer and Perry, the three older sons, were all Federal soldiers. The post office address of Hiram S Dotson is Toll Gate, Ritchie County, West Virginia."

From "History of Ritchie County" by Minnie K. Lowther: "Hiram S. Dotson, the one son that remained here, was born on Cabin Run, in 1822, and spent his entire life within the bounds of his native county, where his ashes lie. He was first married to Miss Susan Markwell, who died while he was serving as a Union soldier in 1863, leaving eleven children; and his second wife was Miss Melvina Poole, who was the mother of his other five children. On October 26, 1863, he was honorably discharged from the army service because his orphan children demanded his presence at home. The children of the first union were Mansfield S., Spence B., Perry E., Amos A., Wm. F., Alpheus R., Charles G., Mrs. Alice J Ash, Mrs. Sarah G. Kyger, and Mrs. Susan Smith -- one name is missing. Those of the second marriage were: J.W., David V., Thomas J., Mrs. Annabella Nutter, and Mary, who became the wife of Henry Miller."

The 1850 Census of Ritchie County shows him as a farmer born in Virginia with his wife Susan, age 23, Mansfield age 6, Spencer age 5, Perry age 3 and Amos 7 months.   He also appears in the 1850, 1870, and 1880 censuses for Ritchie County Virginia/West Virginia.

In 1855 land record confirms his relationship to William, his grandfather, and that Susan J was his wife at that time:

Deed for 140 acres on Dotsonís Run:
This indenture made and entered into this December 8th 1855 by and between Hiram S. Dotson of the County of Ritchie in the State of Virginia of the one part, and David Davisson, of the County of Harrison and State aforesaid of the other part. Witnesseth: that the said Hiram S. Dotson, for said consideration of the sum of six hundred and thirty six dollars, to him in hand paid by the said Davidson the receipt whereof, is hereby acknowledged hath granted, bargained, sold  and released, and by these present does grant, bargain, sell and release to David Davisson, two certain tracts, or parcels of land lying and being principally in the County of Doddridge and state aforesaid, situate on the waters of Dotsons Run, one of the Said tracts being the same that was granted to William Dotson, grandfather of said Hiram S Dotson by letters patent from the state aforesaid, bearing date the twelfth day of June 1815, as by reference to said Patent will more fully and at  appear. . . .

Hiram's Civil War record shows he was a Private in Company G of the 14th Regiment of the Virginia Infantry.  He mustered in Sept 13, 1862 at Ellenboro, Virginia for 3 years from Ritchie Co, Clay District. In July and August 1863, he was reported AWOL but honorably discharged at Petersburg VA, Oct 26 1863 by special order # 479 hardship, due to the death of his wife and his need to care for their children.   Hiram Dotson and three sons, Spencer, Mansfield and Perry all served the Union in the Civil War. In 1890 a report of service shows date of enlistment August 2, 1862 Date of Discharge November 15, 1863 Length of Service 1 year 3 months 13 days. Post office was showing as Toll Gate.  From the 1890 "Special Schedule - Surviving Soldiers, Sailors and Marines and Widows" for the Civil War, in WV, Hiram is showing as having incurred 'throat disease' as disability; also shows date of enlistment as 2 Aug 1862 and date of discharge as 15 Nov 1863.

The 1860 census of Ritchie County shows: Hiram S and Susan J and children down through Charles G. Dotson.

1864 Deed sold to Joseph Flanagan 25 acres Coal - Buck Run Bk 8 pg 22 Ritchie Co
1865 Deed purchased from Adam Weaver 30 a & 211 a on Cabin Run Bk 13 pg 469 Ritchie Co
1870 Deed sale to Joseph Flanagan 29 a 99 6/25 poles on Cabin Run Bk 14 pg. 48 Ritchie Co
1878 Rec'd tract of land on Cabin Run from his father recorded Ritchie Co Bk 20, pg 1878

Family Write-Up by Letha Nutter Zinn  says that Hiram built a two-story frame home with huge fireplaces at the same site where his father previously had built a log cabin. Adjacent to this was a cut stone cellar with a two-story building over it, for grain storage, and a workshop. Years later this house was replaced by another style house. On this same tract of land, at least three log houses were built for or by members of Hiram's family. The only evidence of them, is the huge cut stone from the fireplaces and chimneys. In 1887 Hiram Dotson gave the land for a better building known as the Lower Cabin Run School. This building is still in good condition. All this is in Ritchie County now.

Ritchie Co Death Records page 85 "Dotson, H. S. Sept 25, 1899 Ritchie Co. pleurisy 76 parents Emanuel and Hannah Dotson, farmer, no place given for birth, consort Melvina Dotson. Reported by F.J. Dotson son.  Cause of his death was pleurisy, and he died September 25, 1899.

In the Ritchie County Court House there is record of the settlement of H.S. Dotson Estate in 1902. Book 50, page 497. Melvina, widow, received 1/3 of the estate or 55 1/2 acres. The remainder of the land was divided in lots of about 10 1/2 acres and were deeded to T. J., Amos, and P.E.Toston, M. E. Stinespring, Alice Ash, S.B, A. R. Dotson , M. B. Nutter, M. H. and  C. G. Dotson,  Susan Smith, and Sarah Kiger.

In death record for son, he is listed as Hiram Sears Dotson, but it is believed he was Hiram Sayre Dotson, (since his mother's maiden name was Sayre,  but often reported erroneously as Sears).

From a write-up by Barr Wilson:  In 1911, the Dotson clan held a reunion at the old homestead of Hiram Dotson on Cabin Run. He had passed on in 1900, but his second wife, and fifteen of his children were then living. She was seventy seven, and the ages of the children as given ranged as follows: Spencer 66, Perry S 64, Amos 62, William F 60, Alpheus R 58, Mary E, whose married name is given Stinespring (instead of Miller) 56, Sarah G Kiger 50, John W 46, Daniel V 44, Thomas J 42, Anna B Nutter 39. Four children lived a too great a distance to be present. There were twenty-two grandchildren and six great-grandchildren present.



Emanuel D Dotson was my great great great grandfather.  Emanuel went by name of 'Manuel'. Middle initial "D" comes from a write-up about his son in Hardesty's History.  Also he was an informant for a death and referred to as M. D. Dotson.. He was probably born in Hampshire County, Virginia, and was a young child when he came with his parents and grandfather to what is now the Toll Gate area of Ritchie County. After he married, he and wife lived on Cabin Run in Ritchie County.  

Family a write-up by Letha Nutter Zinn:
In the early 1800's a home was established on Cabin Run, about two miles from Toll Gate, which derived its name from the toll gate on the North Western Turnpike. This home was established by Emmanuel and Hannah  Dotson. He was a descendant of Richard Dotson. Their home was built of logs, as most homes were then. Emanuel Dotson deeded the land to the school board for the first schoolhouse in this section. It was located near the Flanagan line, on the old road to Lynn Camp.

"History of Ritchie County" by Minnie K. Lowther: "Emmanuel Dotson was born at Greenwood, on March 1, 1798; and in his early manhood, was married to Miss Hannah Sears, and on Cabin run where Thomas Dotson now lives, they established their home near the year 1820. Here they remained until they crossed to the other side, and at Tollgate they rest. Mr. Dotson died on February 12, 1881 at the age of eighty-two years. He and his wife Hannah, were the parents of three sons and one daughter; viz., Hiram S, John W., Granville, and Lovisa."

Based on information regarding his father William's whereabouts, it seems more likely Emanuel was born in Hampshire County Virginia area.

1830 in census of VA, Wood County, VA #381 Dotson, Manuel - 2a, 1b, 1e, 1n, 1s (1 male & 1 female 20-30 year old -1 son under 10 2 sons under age 5 + 1 daughter under age 5).  

In 1832 he purchased 100 acres from his uncle Emanuel, Sr. Tract was located at Duckworth on the divide between the waters of Arnold Creek or Wilhelm Creek and Hughes River or Dotson Run, showing in Wood Co Deed Book 8 pg 248 for $100. 

1840 census of VA, Ritchie County shows :1 male age 40 to 50
3 male children age 10 to 15
1 female child age 15 to 20
1 female age 30 to 40

1840 Ritchie County Deed Bk 1, pg 266 - 200 acres on Cabin Run, a branch of the North Fork of Hughes river; grantor was Middleton Williams. 1843 200-acre tract on Gum Run and Lick Run, drains of Cabin Run from William Dixson for $200. Date of deed March 3, 1841.

Oct 21, 1843 Manuel Dotson and wife Hannah sold for $1 land to his uncle Zachariah Dotson a tract of 100 acres on the dividing ridge between the waters of Arnold's creek and Hughes River, part in Tyler and part in Ritchie Counties showing in Ritchie County Deed Bk 1, page 64.

Emanuel served as administrator in the estate of his brother Thomas Dotson, who died 28 Dec 1847. Will Book, No 1, pages 56,57,58.  February 3, 1848 Ritchie County, Virginia.  

The September 13, 1850 Census shows:
DOTSON, Emanuel farmer born in Virginia Age 50 Years, Hannah 46 born in VA. They were living in neighborhood with sons John W Dotson & Hiram Dotson, Broadwaters, brother Squire Dotson & Edmond Taylor, father in law of his daughter Lovisa. 

1860 Census of VA Ritchie County (Dwelling 643-Household 608). All Dotsons in Ritchie Co were enumerated as Dodsons in 1860 census.
Manuel Dodson farmer, age 62, b. VA. Hannah age 57, b. VA.

1864 Book 7, Page 475 Register of Deeds Ritchie Co, VA:
"Manuel Dotson does freely give to the School Commissioners in consideration of his interest in education, his house and lot of land lying on Cabin Run, Ritchie County, State of Virginia, for use of District Number Nine of Free Schools, and said Manuel Dotson does hereby pass all his right, title and interest either in law or equity to said Board of Education, . . . Boundary: Begin on the bank of a small drain on a stone and beach tree, thence North 62 degrees, East 10 poles to a stone, thence South 62 degrees, West 10 poles to a stone, thence South 44 degrees, East 8 poles to the beginning containing 80 poles." The land gives measures 123 x 165 feet.

In 1865 Manuel sold to Solomon Harper 196 acres on Lick Run.  Josiah, son of Solomon, was first husband of Evaline Peck who later married Manuel's grandson, Amos Asbury Dotson.

In 1880 Census Amanuel is showing in household of Hiram & Malvina Dotson as white male, age 82, father of Hiram, a farmer b. WV, father b. VA, mother b. VA

Emanuel and wife Hannah are buried at Toll Gate Baptist Cemetery North of Old Route 50 just east of Toll Gate. Gravestone shows died 12 Feb 1881 age 81 years, 11 months, 11 days. Death Register Ritchie Co, WV 1853-1903 page 36 shows death 12 February 1880 age 83 old age, farmer, parents and place of birth unknown; consort unknown; reported by H. S. Dotson 'friend'.

Thanks to Alan and Cheryl Haught for the cemetery photos.


William Dotson was my great, great, great, great grandfather.  William Dotson's place of birth is reported as being in both Pennsylvania and Virginia. In the 1850 Census of Doddridge County, Virginia, William is showing born in Pennsylvania, age 75, and is a farmer. In the 1860 census of Doddridge County,  William is showing born in Virginia, age 85, and "does nothing". Since Greene County Pennsylvania was still part of Virginia in 1776, this may be the explanation why different censuses show both VA & PA as birthplaces. His birth date is estimated from both the census reports and his death record. He signed an affidavit on September 5, 1854 swearing that he was aged 79.

William married Mary Ann Franks about 1796 probably in Hampshire Co, VA. Henry Franks, her father, said his family was in Hampshire County at that time as were William and his father, Richard.  William appears on property tax rolls of Hampshire County VA from 1798 until 1802. According to "Hardesty's History of Doddridge County", William was living in Greenwood, now Doddridge County area, in 1804.  William and Mary and two children apparently followed William's father, Richard,  to settle in what was then part of Wood County and later became Doddridge. Hardesty's History of Doddridge County says in write-up about son, William Buskirk Dotson, "William and Mary (Franks) Dotson his parents, now many years deceased, settled in this vicinity in 1804."

1810 William is showing in the census for Wood County, Virginia.  William is listed as head of household. Census taker was Jonas Beeson. Nov 23 1810; total Wood County Population 3036 persons.   

1812 Wood Co Deed Book 4 page 353 - a deed dated  for William Dotson from Richard Dotson 77 acres for One Dollar dated 27 March 1810.  This suggests the father and son relationship, as well as William's death record.

12 June 1815 William Dotson 100 acres Wood Co Land Grants Bk 1, Page 171; Treas. Warrant 5177 issued the 25th of January 1814; in conformity with a survey made the 24th day of May 1814; One hundred acres, situate in the county of Wood on the State road leading from Clarksburg to the Ohio river and bounded as followeth to wit: Beginning at a white oak marked "MD" on a line of a survey of Hugh Ferguson's on the dividing ridge between the waters of Arnold's creek and Hughs' river thence N88E 128 poles to a white oak and red oak, thence N2W 128 poles to a hickory and dogwood pointers S88 W128 poles to white oak and two hickories on the aforesaid line of Hugh Ferguson's and thence with his line S2E 128 poles to the beginning with its appurtenances.

1 August 1818 William Dotson, 100 acres, Wood Co Land Grants 1,216; Treas. Warrant 5177, issued the 25th day of January 1814; in conformity with a survey made on the 20th day of September 1816; 100 acres situate in the County of Wood on Cabin run a branch of the N. fork of Hughs's river adjoining lands of Dr. Joseph Spencer and bounded as followeth to wit: Beginning at a hickory lynn and beech thence running S52W 34 poles to a white oak, thence S67E 22 poles to a hickory, thence S29E 80 poles to a beech, thence S84E 132 poles to a beech, N22E 60 poles to a gum, N57W102 poles to hickory on Joseph Spencer's' line and thence with the same 100 poles to the beginning. Hardesty's History of Ritchie County says he was among the first settlers on the head of the North Fork of Hughes River.

2 July 1822 William Dotson, 50 acres, 1,263; Treas. Warrant No. 6593, in conformity with a survey made on the 1st day of April 1820; Fifty acres, situate in the County of Wood, on both sides of Cabin run, adjoining above other land of said Dotson and bounded as followeth, to wit: Beginning at a beech and gum on a line of said Dotson's land and running thence S22W89 poles to an ash, thence leaving said line S68E 90 poles to a poplar and white oak, N22E 89 poles to a white oak and thence N68W 90 poles to the beginning.

1820 census of Wood County the following people were showing in the family: 2 males under 10, 1 male 10-16, 1 male 16-18, 3 males 16-26, 1 male 26-45,
3 females under 10, 2 females 10-16, 2 females 16-16, 1 female 26-45

1830 census of Wood County -  there were 9 children showing in the home.

26 October 1832 Deed Book 8 page 328 Wood County, VA. William Dotson from Emanuel Dotson and Mary his wife of Harrison Co 77 acres Wood Co. for $200. Bounded -- Beginning at a stake on a line of Richard Dottson's and corner of said Dottsons and running with his line N155 poles crossing a branch of Hughes River and the State Road to a stake on the Old line. Thence W 80 poles to a Stake. Thence S 155 poles crossing the Road to a stake on the Old line. Thence E 80 poles to the beginning.

1840 census of Wood County VA William Dotson family.

19 November 1846 Doddridge County, VA  Deeds Book 1 page 126 William Dotson of Doddridge County from Nancy Triplet and other Triplet heirs of Wood Co, 100 acres on Dotson run , for one dollar, being one undivided half of 200 acres patented to Robert Triplett and James Compton.  

24 January 1849 William sold land to his son William B Dontson on South side of NW turnpike. 

14 May 1849 William sold 140 acres to William C Ellefritt for $300;  this land was subsequently sold 8 December 1855 for $630 to Hiram S & Susan J Dotson, grandson of William, son of Emanuel & Hannah Dotson. 

14 May 1849 William sold 7 acres to son William B Dotson for $7.  

28 May 1850 Sold 1/8 interest of 200 acres to James F Kelley, part of 200 acres on Dotson Run in Doddridge County, it being the same land now occupied by the said William Dotson.

1850 census of Doddridge Co shows William as age 75.  He is showing as Wm. Sr.,  farmer, real estate value $2000, cannot read and write, and birthplace as PA.

5 September 1854 William and Mary Dotson made their marks on an affidavit regarding their knowledge about James Jones and his widow Sarah Ravencraft Jones. At the time William said he was aged 79 years and Mary was age 74 years. James P Kelly said both William and Mary Dotson were personally known to him and that "they are creditable persons and their statements are entitled to credit."

21 May 1858 William Sen. and Mary his wife transferred to William C Ellifritt and Mary Jane Ellifritt 101 1/2 acres on waters of Dotson's run

1860 census of Doddridge Co shows William born in VA, age 85 and "does nothing".

6 July 1863 James T Ellefritt paid back taxes of $1.99 for year 1859 and was deeded 99 1/2 acres owned by William Dotson in said county of Doddridge eight miles west from the courthouse on Gum run a branch of Cabin run.

8 January 1865  Doddridge County death record shows his name as William Dotson Sr, age as 88 years 1 months. This register Volume 3, page 8 shows his birthplace as Hampshire Co, VA & his parents as Richard and Mary Dotson; information given by son William C. Dotson. 

There is no record of his place of burial. However, although the date of birth is wrong, I believe this is his stone and his burial place in Greenwood Cemetery in Doddridge County, West Virginia


Richard Dotson 

my great, great, great, great, great grandfather was born October 23, 1752 and died in 1847.
View research about him  HERE .

Thanks to Alan and Cheryl Haught for the cemetery photos of Emanuel and Hiram Dotson, and for the photo of Hiram.