Hamrick History

Hamrick's of California 1850

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Near Jackson California, the Hamrick's created a home for their children, and grandchildren. The site is now the home of a local vineyard, where elements of the old place were used in building the newer home, such as the old doors that go into the wine cellar.

Hamrick Homestead
Painted by Jill O'Neall Ching

Hamrick Homestead c 1890

Patrick Hamrick

Patrick Hamrick is the ancestor of this nation's Hamrick's including North Carolina, Virginia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Georgia, California and many other Hamrick's. Intelligent researchers agree this name is either a phonetically changed or an unintentioanlly corrupted name from either Ireland or England. The early material included in the SC Jones book called the 'Hamrick Generations' is inaccurate, misleading and damaging to others researching this line of family history. Listed on this website are the references which correctly relay the accurate information of Hamrick History.

For the last 77 years the Hamrick Family has been fighting this war, ever since Bruce Bridges almost knocked out SC Jones on his North Carolina front porch, in the 1920's, because Jones' published book throughly misquoted Bridges. The myth persisted at the cemetery dedication years later, attended by Hamrick descendants, two of whom were governors of North Carolina. German George Hammerich is NOT the ancestor of the Rutherford or Wayne County Hamrick's. The recently released reprint of this book is no better than the original, this work is not to be relied upon, some of the 20th century research is probably correct, but the early information is unreliable.
Genealogists: You must have a sincere desire for the truth! Being angry at the truth, does not change it, these myths about the Hamrick history have persisted for too long, those who still claim German George as their ancestor, should change their family group sheets today. This is my opinion and the opinion of the individuals whose materials are referenced on this site.
Some links are included in the reference section of this site.

Submit your references for inclusion on this site.


Hamrick, Mayme H. "The Hamrick and Other Families; Indian Lore"
McClain Publishing Co., Parsons, WV 1939.
Mayme Hamrick was the first researcher to find and document the existence of Patrick Hamrick. Her book is out of print and hard to obtain, but is available at the Library of Congress.

Bridges, Steven A. "Unofficial Hamrick Genealogical Researchers Page " http://www.netcom.com/~huskyfan/hamrick.htm

This page is a detailed account of most of the research which has connected Patrick Hamrick to the Hamrick family members which populate the country. http://www.geocities.com/Heartland/Hills/9665/index.html
This site is an index to the above researchers page. Sources are included.

Ching, Jill O'Neall "Ancestor Tales, Truths and Other Mysteries" 1995 Hawaii
A family history including Hamrick research from Virginia to California, particulary the Nimrod Hamrick b 1790 VA family, email.

Don Norman "Websites" feature extensive genealogical information he has compiled. To locate the Hamrick section, click on the Index, then onto George Hamrick, which will lead you to Patrick Hamrick. This information is unreferenced, so use it as a clue to family research.


Philbeck, Miles S. and Mills Y. Bridges "The Bulletin of the Old Tryon Co. Genealogical Society" Various Articles P O Box 938, Forest City, NC 28043

Bridges, Mills "A Letter to Mr. Shively" July 24, 1996 North Carolina, reprinted here with permission of Mr. Bridges.

Hamricks~ A letter from researcher Mills Bridges of interest to Hamrick's, used with permission

"2111 Ridgefield Drive
Chapel Hill, N. C. 27514-8661
July 24, 1996
Mr. Robert W. Shively,
Phoenix, AZ. 85044-1773
Dear Mr. Shively,

Thank you for the letter. I apologize for being so slow, but provide an excuse that I have been tired after a trip to Budapest, Vienna and Prague. I scanned my Virginia file folders and I just do not have much on the Joseph Ham(b)rick you are interested in. I found a reference to the earliest Joseph Ham(b)rick in the published court abstracts in 1753, yielding a roughly calculated birth date of prior to 1732, supporting a probable conclusion that this Joseph is the son of Patrick Sr. (but can also be questioned as a son of Patrick Jr.). Joseph signed a deed in 1754, with a man by the same name appearing in Bedford Co. in 1782. I have not attempted to trace all Ham(b)ricks out of northern Virginia, and just can not undertake this. You and Steve Bridges are probable closer to this than other researchers, and I think you and he can eventually document the Joseph Hambrick line.

To respond to your question and provide a status report, uncompleted, but in progress, part two of my article deals with the Bridges and Ham(b)rick migration through Granville and Orange Co., N. C. 1760-70's into Tryon Co. The early Granville Co. tax records, civil action and criminal action court records were considered to be "lost", but about the time part one of my article was printed, those Granville Co. records became available in the N.C. Archives. I have spent parts of the last three years reading many, many loose pages of unindexed records for random mention of the families of interest. I have made several hundred copies of records and need to merge and type some of this information into part two which was partially written while part one was being written. There is not much in these records related to Ham(b)rick, except several tax listings and several civil suits mentioning Jeremiah Hambrick.

After I complete part two, I will submit it to the editor of the Bulletin (as he and I have discussed) for consideration for publication. Part two may be stretched into parts three and four to trace some of these families through Tryon Co. into the 1790 Rutherford Co. census. The ending of my article is to be those Bridges and Ham(b)rick families (1790 - 1850 census) who remained in the Tryon/Rutherford Co. area. I have never intended my article to be a definitive history of all Bridges or all Ham(b)rick families in America. That scope is just too large.

Those additional Granville Co. records include many references to Bridges and indicate the "other" Bridge(r)s family on Cedar Creek in Granville was from Surry Co., Va. Moses Bridges b. ca 1745 (from Pr. Wm. Co., Va. to Rutherford Co. N. C.) made contacts through the Granville Co. deeds with the Surry Co., Va. Bridge(r)s family. This has led me to do some Surry Co., Va. research of William Bridge(r)s Sr. who was there about 1715, moved to Granville ca 1749 and left a will probate in Granville Co. in 1762. The question is whether some of the Surry Co. Bridges moved to Pr. Wm. Co., Va. and then they migrated through Granville Co. rejoining family from Surry Co. Research on the Bridges and the Ham(b)rick families is complicated, and because of this, I started part one of the article with the following statement: "This presentation of abstracted records, mostly chronological with comments in parentheses, tracing the movements of these two associated families is intended to create a genealogical data base of information to assist other researchers. This material is not presented as a completed genealogy, rather as a framework upon which to base additional research. It is probable some of the relationships between these early individuals from the same location sharing the same surname will never be proven." ......... " Attempts will be made to include adequate references to permit other researchers to verify the contents of records presented here. This researcher has examined many of the records mentioned, but in some cases has included abstracts published by others and will identify those abstracts. All unindexed public records have not yet been read for information. Additional records and comments are requested. Additional information will be added to future versions of this article." Related to part one of my article, I am aware a few undercurrent remarks have been expressed to others but not directly to me. If there are errors or problems in materials I have presented, let's table it for general discussion and either correct any errors, or fairly present alternative views. My presentation of public records document Patrick Ham(b)rick was in King George Co., Va. at least as early as May 4, 1722; then Patrick obtained the Northern Neck Grant in Prince William Co., Va. in 1740; then other Hambricks (probable descendants of Patrick) appear in Pr. Wm. Co., most notably Jeremiah, Samuel, Price, James and Enoch, most of whom migrate through the records of the Granville Co., N. C. area into the public records of Rutherford Co., and Cleveland Co. These public records which document that the origin of the Rutherford Co. and Cleveland Co. Ham(b)rick family was in the Northern Neck of Va. have been difficult for Ham(b)rick researchers in N. C. to accept because of older, published materials containing errors. S. C. Jones (b. Mar. 31, 1859 d. May 6, 1939) compiled The Hamrick Generations, Being a Genealogy of the Hamrick Family, (207 pages) which he published in 1920. There are hundreds of names in his book, without birth and death dates, without documentation, without references to deeds, wills, probates, taxes, etc. I do not usually make any reference to the book because it has misled many researchers on the Hamrick, Bridges, McSwain and other families. Some of the lineages listed on persons born after 1800 is useful as "family tradition", but by itself, the information in the book is just not documented. Jones declared the Hamricks of Cleveland Co. were descended from one George Hamrick who Jones found came to Philadelphia from Germany in 1731 and settled in Germantown, Pa. (Jones indicated George's son Benjamin had descendants who went to Georgia and Alabama----more on this later.) There are Pa. public records for this George Ham(b)rick, but there are no public records which connect the Cleveland Co. families with the German immigrant George Hamrick. Jones made a guess, and he was wrong, as the Cleveland Co. Ham(b)rick families can be traced in the old records back to Pr. Wm. Co., where Patrick Hamrick had established a family, appearing in the King George Co. records in 1722 (nine years before George Hamrick arrived in Pa.). Hopefully, the records which I presented in part one of my article will permit Hamrick researchers to eventually understand where the Cleveland Co. Ham(b)rick family originated, and to correct mistakes made by Jones. For a few of my other random thoughts and comments ............, Miss Mayme Herbert Hamrick (b. 1893; an attorney) found Patrick Hamrick in Pr. Wm. Co. in her book The Hamrick and Other Families - Indian Lore (1939 - 144 pages) as the probable first Hamrick in the area and thought the family was English. She traced the Benjamin Hamrick I - Mary Sias, and Benjamin II b. 1755 d. 1842 to Webster Co., W.Va. lines. I made a copy of her book about eleven years ago from the copy in the Library of Congress CS71 .H235 1939. Now, back to Benjamin Hamrick, who Jones said was a son of the German George Hamrick of Germantown, Pa. Jones' book, pages 202-207, also contains a listing of Georgia and Alabama Hamricks from a letter written (prior 1920) by Fannie Hamrick, Route No. 1, Dothan, Ala. Jones said Fannie listed "Benjamin Hamrick, who came from Ireland" with his two brothers Robert and Charles, who all served in the Revolutionary War and all lived to be very old men. Jones records that Fannie listed Benjamin's seven children as James, "elder" John (m1 ___ Mozley, m2 Nancy Todd), Marshall, Catherine, Polly, Salathy and Selety. Elder John had a son James P. who had a daughter Fannie, (apparently the person that supplied the information in the letter, a great-granddaughter of Benjamin). After England, I have thought for a long time Ireland may be a realistic possibility as an alternative origin of the Ham(b)rick family, but because of the errors in the Jones book, I did not want to mention Fannie's reference to Ireland in the Jones book in part one of my article. I have intended to comment on the Ireland possibility in a later article. Also I am aware that Princess/Queen Anne imported some Germans into England about 1700 and some ended up in Ireland on their way to America. But, and about 60 percent of my ancestral lines are German so I have researched German families, I haven't seen records yet to indicate the man named "Patrick" Ham(b)rick in the Northern Neck would logically be German. At present, without other records, I just don't think anything other than English or Irish is reasonable for Ham(b)rick. I glanced at a few basic Irish dictionaries and language books to determine if the Ham(b)rick name had identifiable prefix-suffix components in Gaelic or Erse/Erish/Irish, but nothing seemed to match both parts of the compound word. The Erse consonant "H" is silent, almost non-existent. I looked at the place name "Limerick" which is Luim-neach meaning bare spot or barren place. "H" is also silent or almost silent in some English words (honor, honest, etc.), yet the Hambrick families were listed in the early records under H, so I think their H was pronounced, as in ham- (home). So again I ended up back with other English names, such as the place name of Escrick, with the -ric suffix meaning stream or ditch. From the Oxford English dictionary, the word abbotric and bishopric, the -ric suffix designates where the abbot or bishop lived. The suffix -rich is also a diminutive for Richard. Anyway, there appear to be possibilities beyond those mentioned in part one of my article for the Ham(b)rick name to be English.

To continue with Benjamin Ham(b)rick from Ireland, about twenty three years ago, at the Georgia Archives in Atlanta, I listed two items from the "Family Name Index; Main Search Room": Item one: "Benjamin Hamrick, declaration as Revolutionary soldier dated Nov. 7, 1832 and filed in Upson County Superior Court; born July 1739; lived in Prince William Co., Va. at beginning of Revolution; re: Folks Huxford". Item two: "Benjamin Hamrick,Captain, Upson Co. April 16, 1838". Folks Huxford was the founder of the "Georgia Genealogical Magazine" and in 1919 wrote a "History of Upson Co., Ga." I have been unable to find a Revolutionary War record at the National Archives for this Benjamin Hamrick. I wrote to old Judge Huxford about the abstract he made which was in the family name index, and he indicated he found this, when he was working in the Upson County Superior Court Records, or in loose papers, probably for his book, just prior to 1919. I have not reviewed those Court records, but have intended to order LDS film, but just don't have time. If Benjamin can be proven to be Irish, or if this family tradition can be verified among his current descendants, Benjamin's military record may eventually be very important to place an Irish Ham(b)rick in Pr. Wm. Co.

Benjamin's military record is documented in another book, History of Upson County Georgia (1930) by Carolyn Walker Nottingham and Evelyn Hannah which records on page 162-163 under Veterans of Early Wars, Revolutionary Pensioners and Naturalized Citizens ....... not quoted ...... that on November 7, 1832 Benjamin Hambrick, appeared in Upson Co., Ga. age ninety three years, and made oath he volunteered and served under Capt. John Cleveland, Col. Benjamin Cleveland, Col., William Lenor, Capt Preing and Gen. Rutherford. He served until the end of the war and was in two engagements, one at Kings Mountain and one at Ramsuers Mills. He entered service in Prince William Co., Va. where he was born July 9, 1739. After the war, he lived in Wilkes Co., N. C., then Wilkes Co., Ga., then Jasper Co. then Upson Co., Ga. He is acquainted with Elijah W. Brazier, Joseph Horsley and John Hamrick (clergyman). The index to the 1820 Georgia census lists Benjamin Henrick in Jasper Co. The Benjamin Ham(b)rick line appears interesting, but I just don't have time to trace it. I looked at the Wilkes Co., N. C. deeds and other abstracted records and noticed what appears to be two different men named Patrick Hamrick, so I question if Patrick Jr. moved from Pr. Wm. to Wilkes Co., N. C. along with a Patrick III.

I do not have any proven Ham(b)rick ancestors, but there are unidentified females in my Bridges line.

Your comments will be appreciated.

Mills Y. Bridges
cc: Steve Bridges
Miles S. Philbeck, Jr.
Brenda Cameron"

Seeking more references to use for this website, all submissions will be considered for inclusion.

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