Isle of Wight County, Virginia, 1730-1800

Very little is known about the sons and daughters of James Lupo (1658-1713) from Isle of Wight County, and the majority of what is known comes from James' will. In it he mentions sons, Phillip and John, and daughters Sarah (Lilbourne), Ann (Bidgood), Elizabeth (Bidgood/Bedgood) and Mary. The person who shows up most in records in the late 17th and early 18th centuries is son-in-law John Bidgood, Jr., who's mentioned in several wills and deeds, as a resident of the property someone else is purchasing or as a witness to a will or deed or as an appraiser. James' daughter, Ann is named executor in the will of her husband, John in 1715 (probated 1726). While Phillip receives from his father "a pair of old pistols and houlster, a skillet, and a young steer", John is to receive "my gun and sword and my young mare and a young heiffer when he comes to the age of sixteen years". Aside from the personal items James gives his daughters, the remainder of his estate went to his wife, Sarah, but James states that when she dies, the remaining estate is to go to John. Phillip shows up as a witness to the deed of Michael Deloach to Jacob Harvey around 1709 but no other mention of him has been found in existing Isle of Wight deed or estate records.

John shows up twice in the will and deed books of Isle of Wight, both in connection with someone elses estate. On 26 February 1725, he witnesses the will of Joseph Copeland, the grandson and primary heir of Thomas Taberer and on 8 April 1728, he's identified as the administrator for the estate of his sister Sarah Lilburn in an appraisal of the estate which was recorded 27 May 1728. Other than this, John has not been found as a witness, appraiser or heir in any other deed or estate records and does not appear to have left behind any estate records of his own in Isle of Wight, making it difficult to estimate when he died. In 1735, W. Bidgood (probably John and Ann's son William) signs off on an appraisal of Sarah Lilburn's estate, suggesting John has died by this time. No estate record has been found for James' other children and the only mention of the Lupos is in John Brantley's will dated 1 February 1730/31 where he lists "granddaughters Elizabeth, Martha and Mary Loopers" without stating which of his daughters was their mother or which Lupo was their father.

James Lupo's grandson James first appears in Isle of Wight guardian records on 7 August 1755, part of a quitrent list paid by Captain John Mallory as guardian for Thomas Day, orphan of Thomas Day. Thomas was the descendant of James Day who witnessed the will of James Lupo in 1712. On 10 December 1760 James purchases the farm on which he's living from Thomas. The history of the Lupos seems to be intertwined with a number of other Isle of Wight families whose names consistently show up in documents relating to the family for multiple generations, including Bidgood, Brantley, Davis, Day, Hodges, Webb and Wrenn. These families appear to be neighbors, friends and in many cases, relatives as a number of families, including the Brantleys, Bidgoods and Hodgeses, intermarried with the Lupos. John Wrenn, for instance, shows up as a witness or administrator in numerous documents for or with the Lupos throughout the middle of the 18th century as did Thomas Wrenn in the late 17th and early 18th century. John Bidgood is a witness to the will of the elder James Lupo in 1712 as well as his son-in-law, just as Samuel Bidgood shows up as an executor to the younger James Lupo's will of 1789 and as guardian to James' daughter Elizabeth. One is given the impression of a strong, well-rooted community of families that interacted for well over a century.

The region the Lupos inhabited seems to have undergone several name changes over the years. During the time of the elder James Lupo, it was known as the Blackwater region, no doubt due to its proximity to the Blackwater river. It has also been idenfied as the Upper Parish in wills and deeds. By the time the younger James purchased his property, it was known as Newport Parish. The land itself has been described as low-lying with a number of swamps in the area and James Lupo's land bordered Butler's swamp. His neighbors over the years included his step-father, John Cary, brother-in-law Benjamin Brantley, John Wrenn, Thomas Day, William Davis and William Glover.

No record has been uncovered to identify the family of whoever James Lupo married, but he may have married more than once as he has sons who appear to be considerably older than the daughters who appear with him on the 1782 census. In that document, his wife's name is Mary but she does not appear in his will written in 1789, suggesting she's died by that time. His will also mentions daughter Elizabeth Gray Lupo who's not on the 1782 census with James. One possibility is that James married a relative of Thomas Day from whom James purchased property in 1760, though neither James nor any of his children are mentioned in Thomas' will dated 21 October 1769, nor in his father's will from 1752. James' wife in 1782 may have been Mary Gray, given that he names his youngest daughter Elizabeth Gray Lupo. It's possible that Mary was the mother of all James' children, depending on her age when she married and had her first child. James oldest son, William, appears to have been born around 1751-54, given that he's listed on the 1784 census in Johnston County, North Carolina with a sizable family but the only mention of William in Isle of Wight records is James' will in 1789 which names sons James and Laban as executors along with Samuel Bidgood. James had a daughter Mary who married Thomas Brantley in 1792.

From will records of Philip Lupo and William Carrell, we know Phillip married William's daughter who's identified as Mildred. Philip names two daughters in his will, Sally and Mildred and in William's will from 1785, they're identified as Sarah and Mildred. Philip does not mention his wife in his will, suggesting she has died by 1778 and he makes provisions in his will for his daughters education and leaves money to the children of James Lupo and his sister Mary Brantley. Philip appoints his brother James as guardian of his daughters and in 1782, Milly can still be found in James' household. Philip's sister Mary, who married Benjamin Brantley, is identified in the will of Patience Cary as her daughter, who names James and Phillip Lupo as her sons.

In addition to her sons and daughter, the will of Patience Cary, lists five granddaughters, Mary, Patience, Ann, Rebecca and Comfort Hodges who are the children of her apparently deceased daughter Comfort with John Hodges, Jr. While we don't know with certainty which of the earlier Lupos Patience married, most researchers believe this to have been John Lupo, since he's the only one of the sons mentioned in James Lupos 1712 will who shows up in later Isle of Wight records. After the death of her Lupo husband, Patience married John Cary and had a daughter named Comfort. Records from Virginia indicate that John Cary died around 1763 and that Patience did not remarry. In 1766, Patience Cary and John Hodges, Sr. made a deed of gift to Comfort, and in this document three of Comfort's five daughters are named, suggesting that she had been married several years by this time. Comfort's daughter Patience shows up with her father as witness to a will in 1779, something she would have been eligible to do as early as age twelve. Patience Cary leaves one quarter of her estate to each of her children and to Comfort's daughters. Existing evidence suggests Patience lost her first husband in the mid- to late-1730s, and married John Cary between 1735 and 1740. If Patience was the daughter of John Johnson, whose will was witnessed by James and Sarah Lupo in 1703, then Patience lived well into her seventies, outliving two husbands, a son and a daughter.

Figuring out the ages of the various family members presents another challenge, as well as determining if they were the only Lupo family living in Virginia at the time, or just the only one which left behind definitive records. Each generation dating back to Phillip Lupo, Sr. apparently had at least two sons, but it appears that in each generation, only one of the sons produced male offspring, or left behind any indication of who was in his family. Phillip's uncle Albiano Lupo appears to have had only one daughter, though he may have had other sons and daughters back in England. Phillip, Sr. had three known children, a daughter and two sons; James had two sons, but mostly daughters and Patience Cary and her husband appear to have produced two sons and a daughter and one of the sons only mentions daughters in his will.

The 1782 Virginia State Census in Isle of Wight County was reconstructed from tax records and identifies two Lupo families living in William Hodsden's district, that of James Lupo and his son James:

Family one:

James Lupo, Sr.
Laban Lupo
Philip Lupo
Mary Lupo
Mary Lupo, Jr.
Milly Lupo
Family two:

James Lupo, Jr.
Zachariah Lupo
Ann Lupo

The women and men are separated on the census listing, however, we know from will records that James was appointed guardian of his brother Phillip's daughters Sally and Milly until they reached the age of twelve. Since Milly is still in James' household in 1782, it suggests she's not yet twelve. She is grouped with Mary, and Mary, Jr. whereas James, Sr., Laban and Philip are grouped together as are James, Jr. and Zachariah. From will and deed records in Isle of Wight County, we know that James, Jr. married Ann Atkinson and from later will records in North Carolina, we know he had a son named Zachariah. John Bennett Boddie's Seventeenth Century Isle of Wight County, Virginia contains a record from August of 1777 when a Phillip Lupo was appointed an "ensign" in William Hodsden's company of militia, though whether these were patriots or loyalists is not reported. Given the timing, it's possible that this is the Philip Lupo who died in 1778, though, Phillip, the son of Patience Cary, might have been too old to have been appointed an "ensign" which was the lowest infantry rank of the time. So it seems more likely the record pertains to the younger Phillip Lupo who also does not appear in the will of James Lupo. While Sally cannot be found in Isle of Wight records beyond the will of William Carrell in 1785, Milly shows up as a witness to the will of James Lupo in 1789 and as a witness in court in 1790. She married Thomas Mallicote on 7 August 1790 and on 24 January 1792, Milly Mallicote, a widow, married James Atkinson, who, in 1799 is paid a sum of money by the estate of John Harrison who's listed as "guardian" for Mildred "Looper".

Among the list of allied families, should be added the Carrells and the Atkinsons. James Lupo, Jr. married Ann, the daughter of Benjamin Atkinson and, as mentioned, Philip Lupo married the daughter of William Carrell and descendants of both families follow the Lupos into the Carolinas and beyond as do other Isle of Wight families like the Brantleys and Bidgoods. William Carrell also seems to have ties to Patience Cary, naming two of his daughters Patience and Comfort. A generation or so later, Patience Cary's suspected granddaughter and namesake appears as witness to the will of Sarah Carrell, the widow of a later William Carrell in North Carolina. Benjamin Atkinson acts as security for James Lupo, Jr. when he appears in court with the will of his father in September, 1790. In his will, Benjamin mentions a daughter named "Pheby". James and Ann Lupo name a daughter Phoebe, and still later, Moreland Lupo, the grandson of Benjamin, appears to have a daughter by this name who marries in Hancock County, Georgia.

In records related to the estate of James Lupo, the family sells a plot of land to John Womble and the only ones who actually make their mark on the document are James, Jr., his wife, Ann and Margaret Lupo, the wife of Laban who does not appear in court when the will is presented and does not appear to be present when the land is sold. James is also the only son of James Lupo to actually make his mark on the acknowledgement of payment for this land. Within a year, a deed is recorded in Edgecombe County, North Carolina for James Lupo. In 1800, Laban Lupo appears on the census in Robeson County, NC and by 1804, the first Lupos begin to appear in Georgia. The story of the Lupos of Isle of Wight County, Virginia, had effectively come to a close.

Family of James Lupo of Isle of Wight County, Virginia, d. 1790:

James Lupo, b. 1730-1735; d. ca. September, 1790
m. 1) ?
m. 2) Mary Gray? d. bef. 1789

  1. William, b. 1751-54, Isle of Wight Co., VA; d. aft 1795, Johnston Co., NC
    m. ?
  2. James, b. 1754-1757, Isle of Wight Co., VA; d. ca. 1811, Edgecombe Co., NC
    m. Ann Atkinson
  3. Philip, b. 1757-1760, Isle of Wight Co., VA; d. bef. 1789
  4. Laban, b. 1761-1763, Isle of Wight Co., VA; d. bef. 1805, Robeson Co., NC
    m. Margaret ? (possibly Roberts, Robertson, Wombwell)
  5. Mary, b. 1770-1772, Isle of Wight Co., VA; d. aft. 1792
    m. Thomas Brantley
  6. Elizabeth Gray, b. ?; d. ?


  1. Boddie, John Bennett, Seventeenth Century Isle of Wight County, Virginia, Southern Historical Press, Inc., Reprinted 1994.
  2. Chapman, Blanche Adams, Wills and Administrations of Isle of Wight County, Virginia 1647-1800, Willow Bend Books, 1938/2002.
  3. Chapman, Blanche Adams, Marriages of Isle of Wight County, Virginia, 1628-1800, Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., Baltimore, 1982.
  4. Hopkins, William Lindsay, Isle of Wight County, Virginia, Deeds 1750-1782, Iberian Publishing Company, Athens, GA, 1995.

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