Have a Holly “Pauley” Christmas!

There are many West Virginia families that have very deep roots in the Virginias. I am constantly astounded looking back to those early pioneers that braved the wilderness to carve out a new life for themselves no matter what they faced.  No matter where they came from, whether they came from the New England colonies or they were European immigrants that began their life in America first settling in Pennsylvania, Maryland and other eastern colonies, they decided that a move further west would better suite them.  Some didn’t have as far to go as others.  Such is the case of the Pauley family.  Jospeh Pauley, originating in Pittsylvania Co., VA and moving to Kanawha Co., VA.  

My wife’s Pauley family relates back through her great-grandmother, Lettia (Miller) Midkiff…no relation to my Miller family.  My wife’s 3x great-grandmother was Miram Pauley who married Absolom Miller.  What follows are the records that go back in chronological order to Joseph Pauley (1757-1845).  

1880 Census, Washington District, Lincoln Co., WV – Lettia A. Miller (father-Henry J. Miller and mother-Sarah Griffith – Sarah Griffith’s family also relates back to the Pauley family, but that will not be shown here):  

  Courtesy of FamilySearch©  

1870 Census, Washington District, Kanawha Co., WV – Henry J. Miller with his family, headed by his parents Absolom Miller and Mary A. (Miriam) Pauley:  

Courtesy of FamilySearch©  

Henry J. Miller’s birth record:  

Courtesy of Ancestry©  

The marriage record of Absolom Miller and Mary Pauley:  

Courtesy of FamilySearch©  

1850 Census, Kanawha Co., VA – Miriam Pauley with her family headed by her parents Meredith Pauley and Nancy Hall:  

  Courtesy of FamilySearch© 

The marriage record of Meredith Pauley and Nancy Hall:  

  Courtesy of FamilySearch©  

Courtesy of FamilySearch©  

The will of Meredith Pauley – from West Virginia Will Books, 1756-1971, Kanawha, Will book, v. 002 1859-1876. Mentioned as heirs are Amos Pauley and Mariam Miller.  A third name is mentioned, but I couldn’t make it out. Obviously, Mariam Miller is Meredith’s daughter Mariam Pauley:  

Courtesy of FamilySearch©  

From all of the family trees I have seen on Ancestry, FamilySearch and Wikitree, they all indicate that Meredith Pauley’s parents were Joseph Pauley (1757-1845) and Lavina Midkiff (1763-1840).  I have not found any records that can verify this, but I feel pretty certain that this is true.  If there are any Pauley cousins out there that has proof of this, your input is more than welcome.  

I did find the transcribed 1830 census of Logan County, VA and listed here are all of the Pauley head of the households which I can assume that Joseph is the patriarch and the rest are some of his sons and/or grandsons:  

Courtesy of wvancestry.com  

That brings me to my next Pauley descendant that I have researched and is related back through this Pauley family and is more than likely a cousin to my wife.  I’ll get around to giving that cousin’s name in a little bit.  I’d rather show the lineage first.  

The likely cousin’s parents were Richard G. Pauley (1916-1993) and Mary E. Patterson (1915-1997).   

Here is the 1930 Census for Hancock Co., IN for Richard Pauley and his family. His parents were Albert H. Pauley (1887-1940) and Margurite I. Grandison (1887-1940):  

  Courtesy of FamilySearch©   

Here is the birth record for Richard G. Pauley:  

Courtesy of Ancestry© 

 Here is the 1900 Census in Hancock Co., IN for Albert H. Pauley. His parents were Richard M. Pauley (1856-1912) and Mary Jane Sheets (1856-1914):  

Courtesy of FamilySearch©  

  Here is the marriage record for Albert H. Pauley, married 25 Dec., 1913:  

Courtesy of FamilySearch©  

Here is the 1860 Census in Hancock Co., IN for Richard M. Pauley with his family.  His parents were Edward W. Pauley (1816-1896) and Nancy McCorkhill or McCorkle (1820-1889):  

Courtesy of FamilySearch© 

 Notice where Edward was born?  I guess you know where this is going, don’t you?  

The marriage record for Edward Pauley and Nancy McCorkhill or McCorkle:  

Courtesy of FamilySearch©  

According to Wikitree, Edward W. Pauley was the son of Andrew Pauley (1790-1867).  Here is the will of Andrew Pauley, in Hancock Co., IN (Indiana, U.S., Wills and Probate Records, 1798-1999, Wills, Circuit Court Probate, 1845-1866, 1871-1890):  

Courtesy of Ancestry©  

Now at this point I didn’t think there were any other records to show here, but there is one more that’s very intriguing. I found this U.S. Land Grant for Joseph Pauley dated 2 Sept. 1834:  

Courtesy of Ancestry©  

Key points for this record:  

  1. Joseph Pauley of Kanawha County, Virginia:  


  1. The location of the 80 acres of land specified here is in Township 16 North, Range 8 East, Section 29.  This is very important because this will help me locate exactly where in Hancock County, IN this parcel of land is:  


  1. I found the Hancock County, IN website and under their GIS mapping, I was able to get to a map that had a layer for what are called “Sections”. The Sections are broken down by section number, township number and range number. On this map they have the numbers arranged as section-township-range (29-16-8):  

Courtesy of Beacon – Hancock Co. IN  

  1. Now, let’s see…what Township was mentioned as the one that Andrew Pauley was from that was in his will?  

Yep, Jackson Township.  

I then found this for Andrew Pauley, dated 2 April, 1835 and the section number 19-16-8 (see map above):  

Courtesy of Ancestry©  

So, based on everything I have seen, the above Joseph and Andrew Pauley may have been brothers. I’m not 100% sure who Andrew’s and Joseph’s parents were…some trees say Joseph Pauley and Lavina Midkiff and others say Edward Pauley (1758-1845) and Agnes Mullins (1766-1854).  

After some more careful searching, I came to the conclusion that there is a lot more work to be done here. For the most part, the many lines of this Pauley family came down through the sons and daughters of David Pauley (1733-1785) and Agnes Adkins (1740-1798), which is where the cousin connection comes in for my wife that I had mentioned before.  If all of the above can be verified, this would be my wife’s cousin:  

News Anchor and Television Host  

Courtesy of Wikipedia  

Remember, many of these Virginia families have deep roots, and although family lore and history can lull you into believing something is true, you still need to perform the difficult tasks of tracking and researching your ancestors to confirm the events in their lives. Do whatever you must to verify those family ties by documentation and records. Utilize the map tip and you may be surprised what you can verify by using it. Just a note to remember about the map tip…every county in every state may or may not have a map website in which to research sections, but it’s always worthwhile to give it a shot. If you do find one, not all maps may look the same and may format the section numbers differently. Always keep an opened mind and an even wider eye opened. You don’t want to miss anything.  

This post is my gift to you and Cheryl and I are wishing you a Merry Christmas, one filled with Love, Joy and Peace…and have a Happy New Year!!  





Beacon-Hancock County GIS Mapping  


Cheryl, my wife for always being there for me and giving me her love which I could not live without.  

Merry Christmas Sweetie!  


4 thoughts on “Have a Holly “Pauley” Christmas!

  1. Interesting and well written as always. Reminder of how significant having land was!
    Wasn’t the “sectioning “ used a result of the Northwest Ordinance??


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