Many Cornwall Descendents In South
Trace Lineage to Early Virginia Settler

By Arthur Cornwall

The surname Cornwall is a place name taken from the south-westernmost county of England. It means the corn or promontory of Wales (Welch, Gaels). At the present time the forms Cornwall and Cornwell about equally divide the usage of Cornwall descendents, though Cornwall seems to be supplanting Cornwell.

Capt. John Cornwall, of the British Army, fell in the storming of Ticonderoga under Abercrombie in 1758. His son, William, who was born in Dublin, Ireland, October 19, 1750, came to New York with his mother in 1765. This William Cornwall married in Greenwich, Conn., November 5, 1776, Hannah Finch, and settled soon after in Delaware County, New York. He served in the Revolution as ensign and lieutenant. After the Revolution he moved to Genessee County, New York. He died in 1816 in Jerusalem, Yates County, New York. He had 10 children.

Came to Philadelphia

In 1772 four brothers, Benjamin, William, Abraham and Jesse Cornwall, came to Philadelphia from Scotland. Benjamin and William settled in Hampshire County, Virginia. Abraham and Jesse are said to have settled in New York and New Jersey.

In a note from "Hotten's Lists" we find that on October 24, 1635, William Cornwall, aged 20, was bound to Virginia aboard the ship "The Constance." This is the ancestor of the Cornwalls in the South.

In Dinwiddie County, Virginia, were born the following brothers and one sister: Obadiah, Eli, William, Elijah, Jesse and Hannah Cornwall. Little is known of the descendents of Hannah. She is said to have married a sailor by the name of Griffin or Griffith, reared a family and died in Virginia.

Obadiah Cornwall married Sarah Goode. They lived and died in Dinwiddie County. Their children were: Elijah, who never married; Thomas, who never married and was shot to death by an unknown person; John who came to Chester County, South Carolina, and married Hannah Colvin; James who married Julia Ann Leach and lived and died in Virginia; Jesse who never married and was drowned in a mill pond in Virginia; William who never married and died in Henry County, Virginia; Joseph who married, 1st, Amanda Gray, and 2nd a woman in Tennessee where he moved and lived; Frances Goode who married, 1st, a Nunley and 2nd a Hanna. She left several Nunley children in West Virginia around Jacox.

Large Landowner

Eli Cornwall (born April 23, 1767, died March 5, 1848) married Rhoda Colvin (born November 28, 1771; died March 28, 1843), daughter of John and Hannah Price Colvin. Their children were: Elijah, who married Frances Pratt; William Davis, who married Frances Loving Bennett; Jesse and Thomas, who never married; Sarah, who married Thomas Wright; Cynthia, who married John Wesley Wilks; Elizabeth, who married William Hardin; Nancy, who married Enoch Sealy, and Hannah, who married, 1st, Robert Douglas and, 2nd, a McAfee. Eli Cornwall was the largest landowner of his day in Chester County, South Carolina.

Elijah Cornwall, brother of Eli and Obadiah, came to South Carolina also but stayed only a short while and went to Covington, Ga. He married Catherine Cavanaugh (or Cavender) about 1786. He drew land in the lottery of 1827 as a Revolutionary soldier while residing in Jasper county, Georgia, where he died November 16, 1827. His wife died July 16, 1853. Their descendents are living in Atlanta and Monticello, Ga.

Elijah's children were: Sons, Elijah, Eli, Hiram, Obadiah and George Washington, and daughters, Betsy, who married Absolom Stewart; Catherine, who married William Taylor; Nancy, who married James Diamond; Thenia, who married John Henry, and Sarah, who married George Ramsay.

Many Descendents

Eli and Hiram went to Mississippi. Elijah, Obadiah and George remained in Jasper county, married and reared large families.
The descendents of Betsy are living around Stone Mountain and Atlanta. The children of Elijah Jr., were; Nancy, Emmeline, George, Elizabeth, Adeline, Elijah and Hugh M., all of whom are dead, but their descendents live in Jasper, Newton, Monroe and Butts counties, Georgia.

Obadiah Cornwell was born September 7, 1804; he married Mary Anne Lane, reared a large family and died June 15, 1873. His children were; Rhoda, Catherine, Eli, Adeline, Joel, Thenia, William D., Mary and Sarah. Eli and Joel were killed in the War Between the States. Mrs. M. O. Faulkner, of Jackson, Ga., is the only surviving child. Obadiah has many descendents living in Jasper County, Georgia.

George W. Cornwell was born March 8, 1808. He married Eliza D. Lane, reared a large family and died January 5, 1863. His children were; Dr. Gibson Hill, Dr, William D., Mary J., Davis Lane, Elizabeth Anne, Adeline F., and Lenora V. All are dead, but their descendents are living Georgia and Texas. Dr. D. H. Cornwell died without issue. Dr. W. D. Cornwell has a daughter living at Monticello, Miss Ada E. Cornwell. Another child, William Davis Cornwell, who was superintendent of schools of Jasper County, Monticello, Ga., died several years ago.

Davis Lane Cornwell has two sons. living in Monticello, George W. and J. Troy Cornwell, and two sons living in Atlanta, Colonel Gibson H. and Joseph Davis Cornwell.

The author of this article is descended on both sides from the Cornwalls. His mother, who was Margaret Colvin, was a direct descendent of Obadiah Cornwall through her mother, Mary Virginia Cornwall, daughter of John V. Cornwall, who married Colonel N. G. B. Colvin. His father, Dr. John E. Cornwall, present clerk of court of Chester County, South Carolina, is a descendent of Eli Cornwall, through his father, John Bennett Cornwall, who married Alice Stone. John was the son of William Cornwall, and the grandson of Eli Cornwall.

The Cornwall family reunion will be held in Chester, S. C., September 1 or 2, and new members will be welcome.

(Transcribed from The Sunday American newspaper, printed in Atlanta, Georgia. Dated August 28, 1932. The above was an article in a section called The "Genealogy Department".)

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