RIGGS FAMILY STORIES
Samuel Riggs Sr.
& Elizabeth Beaird
abt 1700 - 1765
(No sources available at this time)
Ancestors from this time backward
From this generation backwards in time, the data on our branch of this family may be documented with others on the internet, but it will be impossible to trace down the sources for each and every ancestor. Take everything with a grain of salt. But they might INDEED be our ancestors. Until proven otherwise, I will merely state at the top of each page "no sources available at this time" and document the particular family within the page as the data (logical) for this family. "These were their parents. These were their siblings. These were their dates." If you know otherwise (with sources), send me an email and I will correct the information.
This section will be included at the top of each of the web pages for earlier ancestors - for those who might not be interested in preceding surnames, but happen upon an earlier ancestor's name on the internet and jump specifically to that page. For all others, just skip this "disclaimer". It's here as a reminder.
Riggs family - from England/Scotland/Ireland to North Carolina
Various branches of the Riggs family throughout the United States of America have their original immigrant Riggs family member coming from either England, Scotland, or Ireland. Our branch of the Riggs family has not been connected YET with any of these branches, but the most likely branch landed in Virginia and later moved to Pasquotank County, North Carolina where numerous descendants still live.
Some of them moved to Marion County, South Carolina (more likely related to the Smith's and other surnames in Marion County) in South Carolina, but probably not directly related since they didn't arrive there until the late 1800's and early 1900's.
There were a couple of Riggs that moved to Dorchester County, at least one of whom is buried at Cypress United Methodist Church Cemetery in Ridgeville, South Carolina. However he came to the area in the 1900's and OUR latest Riggs family member (in our direct branch) was Louisa Jane Riggs who was born in the Dorchester County area in 1806.
One of these Riggs men, known as Edward the Immigrant, supposedly came over to America in 1590. The date might be a "little" off since the first "successful" English settlements along the East Coast of the United States weren't started until the early 1600's (according to the history sites on the internet). Of course, Spain had settlements in Florida in the later 1500's - but they were Spanish settlers.
OR - according to one story - he might have been part of the "Lost Colony" that was founded in 1587 on Roanoke Island, NC. Some say one hundred (100) men, women, and children were a part of that colony on the Outer Banks. Others say approximately 90 men, 17 women, and 9 children. Some sources quote those as exact numbers, some say "at least 17 women and 9 children."
For an interesting history of "The Lost Colony", check out one or more of the following websites:
- www.coastalguide.com/packet/lostcolony01.htm (by Eric Hause)
- www.outer-banks.com/lost.cfm (The outdoor drama of "The Lost Colony")
- www.nationalcenter.org/ColonyofRoanoke.html (by Ralph Lane)
- statelibrary.dcr.state.nc.us/nc/ncsites/English2.htm (NC State Library)
Theory/story of a Riggs ancestor being assimilated into what is now the Lumbee Tribe
According to a Riggs family story (source - Hazel Hancock), "George Elwood Riggs was born in Norfolk, VA; m. Sarah Pritchard in Elizabeth City, NC; d. Elizabeth City, NC. His parents were said to be part of the 'lost colony'". I (like most people probably) have always heard of "The Lost Colony" as a legend with a mysterious ending which will always remain a mystery. However, according to the Lumbee tribe, they are direct descendants of English settlers who were assimilated into the nearby friendly tribe that spoke "Croatan" (also the lands of the Cheraw tribe). The tribe later took on the name of the nearby Lumbee River in North Carolina. This is the reason, they state, that some of their members have light or blond hair, blue eyes, etc. Check out the following website for the interesting interpretation that it should not be called "The Lost Colony" with a tragic, unknown ending.
This site also has some good links, including the official website for the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina, etc.
Back in 1974-1977 while I was a graduate student at Scarritt College for Christian Workers in Nashville, Tennessee I spent a few months as an intern with USET Inc. (United Southeastern Tribes Inc.), a confederation of various eastern Native American tribes. I worked/studied directly under the supervision of someone in the department involving education. He was part Seneca and part Onandaga (from the state of New York). Hiawatha was a member of the Onandaga tribe.
While there I learned a little something about the Lumbee tribe in the eastern section of North Carolina. There has been a long debate/conflict over the request by the Lumbee tribe to be recognized as a Native American tribe by the federal government. They have been partially recognized, but without full recognition which would make them eligible for federal education grants, etc.
Part of the conflict (as I understood it at the time of my internship) has been that if they are officially recognized, that will make them the LARGEST tribe east of the Mississippi - with the political power that would result. Educational funding/grants could possibly be largely swayed toward the Lumbee tribe at the expense of the other smaller tribes east of the Mississippi. The other major reason against recognition of the Lumbee Nation is that their members include so many with blond hair and blue eyes, or even darker skin and kinky hair. The argument is that members marry outside of the tribe and their non-Indian spouses and children are given tribal membership.
The argument in favor of the Lumbee Nation is based largely on the fact that they have ALWAYS considered themselves to be descendants of that first English settlement referred to by the settlers as "Roanoke in Virginia" (popularly misnamed "The Lost Colony"). See the first website listed above (in section #2) by Eric Hause.
For our particular branch of the Riggs family that precedes Louisa Jane Riggs and her father William Riggs Jr., the research to connect the family with the North Carolina Riggs family (or whoever were their ancestors) continues.
Samuel Riggs Sr. and Elizabeth Beaird
The parents of Samuel Riggs Sr., along with the date of his birth, are unknown. They might have lived in the coastal area of South Carolina. Another possibility is that Samuel Riggs Sr. might have moved from North Carolina to the LowCountry of South Carolina where he met Elizabeth Beaird . He died sometime before September 23, 1743, probably in the LowCountry of South Carolina. This specific date is presumably that of a legal document in which Elizabeth Beaird Riggs is mentioned as a widow.
Elizabeth Beaird, the daughter of Matthew Beaird Sr. (mother unknown), was born about 1704 and died on July 29, 1765. As mentioned above, they might have lived in the LowCountry of South Carolina since, according to one record, her father Matthew Beaird died in the Goose Creek area near Charleston, South Carolina.
The family of Samuel Riggs Sr. and Elizabeth Beaird
The date for the marriage of Samuel Riggs Sr. and Elizabeth Beaird is unknown at this time. The only information so far regarding their children ("issue" as offspring were legally called in those days) is that of their son listed below.
- Samuel Riggs Jr. (1724/1738 - 1799)
Elizabeth Beaird's parents and grandparents and their families
Because there is such scarce information on Elizabeth's parents, grandparents, siblings, and uncles, and other ancestors, they will be listed in this section until more is learned about them.
Elizabeth's father Matthew Beaird Sr. and her mother (name unknown) had three (3) children:
- Ann Beaird (born abt 1703)
- Elizabeth Beaird (abt 1704 - 1765)
- Matthew Beaird Jr. (1722 - ??? )
Elizabeth's paternal grandfather was James Beaird Sr. who died in Charleston, SC on October 21, 1711 James Beaird Sr. and his wife (name unknown) had four (4) children:
- Matthew Beaird Sr.
- James Beaird Jr.
- William Beaird
- George Beaird