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Henry Thompson
of Stephens Creek in Wilkes and Greene Counties, Georgia,
and of Jones County, Georgia
by Michal Farmer and Russell Henderson
    1. Henry1Thompson was born, say, 1750. His will was made 22 February 1823 and proved 3 March 1823 in Jones County, Georgia.1 Henry was married at least twice. His wife, Mary ——, joined with him in deeds in 17972 and 1803.3 Mary’s maiden name is unknown. Henry’s wife was dead before he made his will. She wasn’t named in his will or estate papers. Henry Thompson had ten surviving children when he made his will in 1823. The eldest child, Jane Thompson Pollard, was born circa 1772, and the youngest child, Salatha W. Thompson Leak, was born circa 1817. The children’s ages span forty-five years, exceeding the childbearing years of one woman.
    Henry moved from North Carolina, to Wilkes County, Georgia, in 1783 or 1784. His daughter, Anne, was born in North Carolina, in 1782. Anne was the last child known to be born in North Carolina.
    Wilkes County was created in 1777 from the Ceded Lands. The land had been ceded by the Creek and Cherokee Indians by treaty in 1773. There are no extant tax lists for Wilkes County, before 1785. The county was over eighty miles from north to south and fifty miles from east to west at its longest and widest points.
    Wilkes County was thinly settled until after the Revolutionary War. Thousands of settlers came to Wilkes County as soon as the war was over. The settlers came because most of the unoccupied land was being granted as headright and as bounty land grants to Revolutionary soldiers. Bands of settlers came to Wilkes County from the north, principally from Virginia and the Carolinas.
    Wilkes County had a population of 14,384 in 1786. In 1790, Wilkes County had 24,232 free souls which was over forty-five percent of the total free souls in the state of Georgia (53,284). The total of all persons in Wilkes County (31,500) was thirty-eight percent of the total population of the state (82,548) in 1790.

    1 Recorded in Jones Co., Ga., Will Book B, p. 108-110
    2 Michal Martin Farmer, Wilkes County, Georgia, Deed Books A – V V, 1784-1806, (Dallas, Texas, 1996), p. 526. Deed Book QQ, p. 132.
    3 Greene Co., Ga., Deed Book BB, p. 185.