Mary E. Rutherford

Who is Mary E. Rutherford?

A Possible Ancestral Line for Mary

Sometimes, we base our conclusions on circumstantial evidence.  We know that Mary E (Rutherford) Vandegrift, wife of Leonard Vandegrift, was born November 27, 1803.  The Philip and Elizabeth (Evans) Rutherford family appear to be a possible family.  The family consisted of:

1-Philip Rutherford, born about 1775 and died about 1820 in Monongala, West Virginia.  He married Elizabeth Evans.  Their children were:

2-Evans Rutherford, born about 1800 in Harrison County, West Virginia

3-John Rutherford, born about 1802 in Harrison County, West Virginia; died 26 October 1828 in Harrison County, West Virginia

4-Daughter Rutherford

5-Middleton Rutherford, born 10 July 1806 in Harrison County, West Virginia; died 20 April 1858 in Taylor County, West Virginia

6-Nancy Rutherford, born born about 1808 in Harrison County, West Virginia; married James Watkins

7-Samuel Rutherford, born about 1808; married Lydia Vandegrift

8-Elias Evans Rutherford, born about 1810 in Harrison County, West Virginia; died 1845 in Harrison County, West Virginia; married Anne Mariah Tucker

9-Philip Rutherford,  born 29 June 1814 in Harrison County, West Virginia; died 1 March 1911 in Gilmer County, West Virginia; married Emzey Stout

10-George Washington Rutherford, born about 1816 in Harrison County, West Virginia; died 31 May 1885 in Marion County, West Virginia; married Rachel Tucker

11-Randolph Spicer Rutherford, born 14 April 1818 in Harrison County, West Virginia; died 17 February 1880 in Bondurant, Polk County, Iowa

Another Possibility is

The Lineage of John Rutherford

John Rutherford

The name Rutherford establishes kinship with a fairly close knit group of People who first appeared by that name on the borders of Scotland.  Marriages between the Scots and the English, primarily to settle the Border disputes, were consummated in the 17th Century and we find the Rutherfords were among those who married and settled in North Cumberland, England.

The first Rutherford immigrant to come to the shores of America of whom the compilers have found record was John Rutherford (born about 1600) who came in the Warwick in 1621 to Elizabeth City, Virginia, as a headright under a patent issued to Robert Sweete.  As a headright he had the right of ownership to a parcel of land granted to him by the English government as head of a family settling upon it.  A patent of 500 acres of land was assigned to John Rutherford and Mycum Curry, March 17, 1655, lying on the south side of the James River and the west side on Indian Swamp by the name of Ohoreck Swamp and opposite the Thomas Welton plantation.  Each man received a tract of land in Charles City County and John Rutherford assigned his tract of land to William Heath 5 March 1664.

John Rutherford of Surry County, Virginia, an attorney, died before 1684 at which time his estate was settled.  He and his wife Bridgett were the parents of a daughter, Catherine Rutherford, who married John Moore, and were the grandparents of Betty Rutherford Moore (1731-1768) who married George Randolph (d. 1772), clerk of St. Mark’s Church in Sussex County, Virginia.

Although no record has been found to identify John Rutherford of Elizabeth City in 1621 with John Rutherford of Surry County, deceased before 1684, no record has been found by the compilers indicating a second immigrant either.  It is the conclusion of the compilers that the two records refer to the same man.

According to the records located by the compilers there were only three Rutherfords, John and Richard of Virginia and Henry of Connecticut, who came to the colonies prior to the 1600’s.

Richard Rutherford of Lower Norfolk County, Virginia, died intestate in 1652 and his children were accounted for in the settlement of his estate.

Henry Rutherford of New Haven, Connecticut, in 1633, had six children all of whom were accounted for.

John Rutherford of Charles City County, Virginia, immigrant in 1621, is therefore the logical father of Robert Rutherford (ca 1634-1728) of Essex County, Virginia, although no official record  of the father-son relationship has been found.  Robert Rutherford was born in Virginia as no record of his immigration has been located.  

Robert Rutherford

No record of the immigration of Robert Rutherford of Essex County, Virginia, has been found so it is assumed he was born in Virginia.  The John Rutherford who came in the Warwicke was probably the father of Robert Rutherford of Essex County, Virginia, as no other Rutherford immigrant was cited in Cavaliers and Pioneers who would have been the proper age and in the right location to be the father of Robert Rutherford.  Kenneth Rutherford Davis, a Rutherford descendant and researcher of the early Rutherford records in Scotland and England wrote:  I was interested to read your premise that Robert Rutherford of Essex County, Virginia, might be the son of John Rutherford who came to Elizabeth City in 1621.  Very likely.  My own guess, in the circumstances of the time, is that John – who probably sailed from London or somewhere in Devon – came from the London area and was only a generation back derived from Northumberland or Durham on the English Borders.  He could well have been closely related to my ancestors at that time.  It is quite unlikely, knowing the political set up then that he came from Scotland any where.  Although under the same King, Scotland was a foreign country until 1707 (the Act of Union) and Scotsmen were disliked here until c. 1800.  But of course, as with my own supposed line, the ultimate origin was Roxburghshire.”

Robert Rutherford was cited in Virginia records as early as 1676 and as late as 1728.   He was living in Sittenbourne Parish of Old Rappaahannock County, Virginia, 10 March 1676 for on that date Robert Rutherford and Thomas Hawkins witnessed the will of Thomas Page of Rappanhannock  County.  Other wills that bear the signature of Robert Rutherford as a witness recorded in Essex County were the wills of David Jameson dated 2 December 1711 and Samuel Stallard dated  2 December 1720.  Robert Rutherford was a resident of St. Anne’s Parish of Essex County, Virginia, 21 August 1728.  This date pertains to the elder Robert Rutherford as Robert Rutherford, Jr., died in 1725.

In a deposition made in Essex County dated 10 August 1692, Robert Rutherford stated that he was about forty-eight years of age.

According to a court order issued in Old Rappahannock County, Rutherford was appointed constable in the place of Seth Tinsley 4 June 1684.

 Robert Rutherford, Jr.

Robert Rutherford was the only Rutherford in Essex County, Virginia found by the compilers who was old enough to be the father of Robert, Jr., John, James, and Adam Rutherford.  In 1724 Robert Rutherford, Jr., was a witness for Robert Rutherford.  John was named as a son of Robert Rutherford in Brooks and Kindred Families, and he administered the estate of Robert Rutherford, Jr., in 1725.  Robert, Jr., John and Adam Rutherford all had sons who settled in Goochland County, Virginia, in the 1740’s and 1750’s.  Robert Rutherford, Jr.’s sons and grandsons who settled in Montgomery and Wythe counties, Virginia, and Lincoln County, Kentucky, associated with the same Logans with whom James Rutherford associated in the Cub Creekarea of Lunenburg County, Virginia.

Robert Rutherford, Jr., was a witness for Robert Rutherford during the August term of court in 1724 in Essex County, Virginia.  Robert Rutherford of Essex County was the only Rutherford in Essex County at that time who was old enough to be the father of Robert Rutherford, Jr.

Robert Rutherford, Jr., married Margaret Vawter.  Bartholomew Vawter immigrated to Virginia, about 1685 and in July 1688 he made a deed of gift to Margaret Rutherford, daughter of Robert Rutherford.  In his will, dated 16 August 1717, Bartholomew Vawter made a bequest to his daughter Margaret.  The date of Vawter’s immigration proves that Margaret Vawter married Robert Rutherford, Jr., instead of Robert Rutherford, his father.

Robert Rutherford, Jr., died intestate in Essex County, Virginia.  His son, John Rutherford, Jr., relinquished his right 15 March 1725 to administer the estate.  A certificate for the administration of the estate was issued to John Rutherford, no. 1003, a brother of Robert Rutherford, Jr., deceased, and an inventory was submitted in court 18 April 1726.  Col. James Wood named John Rutherford, no. 1007, as his brother-in-law.  Thomas Rutherford, no. 1008, of Frederick County, Virginia, was also named as a brother-in-law of Col. James Wood.

 Benjamin Rutherford

Benjamin Rutherford was a resident of Frederick County, Virginia.  He was appointed deputy sheriff of Frederick County in 1744.  He moved to Patterson Creek Manor about 1751 according to his deposition given in court at age seventy-eight in Winchester, Virginia, having moved there four years before Braddock’s defeat.  This  portion of Frederick County was erected into the county of Hampshire in 1756.  Subsequently in 1762 he purchased a tract of land on Patterson Creek compromising 83 acres of land and two other tracts totaling 507 acres of land in 1766.  In 1767 he leased 529 acres of land from Lord Fairfax in Hampshire County.

Benjamin Rutherford was living in Frederick County in 1778.  He leased his plantation of 300 acres of land on the drains of Opeckon Creek whereon he dwelt to his son, Robert Rutherford, Jr., 5 November 1778, reserving the house and barn for himself and his wife Elizabeth.  Witnesses to this lease were Tomas Rutherford, Drusilla Rutherford and Benjamin Rutherford, Jr.  He was also enumerated on the 1790 census as a resident of Frederick County, Virginia.

Benjamin Ruherford died testate.  In his will, dated 14 February 1803, and proved 6 May 1805 in Frederick County, he willed his entire estate to his daughter Elizabeth, the wife of Samuel Glass, as she “has always conducted herself towards me as a dutiful and affectionate child.”  He appointed his friend, John Peyton, the husband of Susanna Rutherford, daughter of Congressman Robert Rutherford, as his executor.  The names of his children and their respective dates of birth were listed in papers compiled by Leonardo Andrea, a Southern genealogist.

John C. Rutherford

John C. Rutherford, the son of Benjamin Rutherford, was born October 7, 1761.    He is listed as the eighth child of Benjamin and Elizabeth.

 John & Evans Rutherford

John Ruherford, probably a grandson of Benjamin Rutherford, b. 17 January 1791, Shenandoah Valley in Virginia; d in Gallia County, Ohio.  John married Sally Scott, 15 July 1813, Gallia County, Ohio.

John Rutherford and his brother, Evans, helped a neighbor move from Virginia to Ohio near Columbus, when they were in their early twenties.  On their return trip, they stayed overnight with a farmer named Scott near Gallipolis.  Scott persuaded the two young men to stay in Ohio and help him clear his land which was heavily forested.  They stayed and married his daughters.  John married Sally and Evans married Elizabeth.  John and Evans made their home in Gallia County, Ohio, near Gallipolis.   The names of their children were compiled by Prudence (Rutherford) Adair.  The names were:  Daniel, Betsy, James Evans, John, Jackson J., Benjamin, Martin Elias, Jane, Caroline and Francis Marion.

Evans Rutherford, probably a grandson of Benjamin Rutherford, b. 14 February 1792, Shenandoah Valley in Virginia; d. 17 Dec 1856; bur in Temple Cemetery, Meigs County, Ohio.  Married Evans Rutherford, 30 December 1816, Gallia County, Ohio.  Elizabeth Scott, b. 14 February 1792; d. 14 August 1847, Gallia County, Ohio; bur. In Temple Cemetery, Gallia County, Ohio.

Evans Rutherford was enumerated on the 1850 census as a resident of Meigs County, Ohio.  He reported he was fifty-nine years old.  On 10 December 1850 he applied for bounty land based on his service in the War of 1812 and was awarded 80 acres of land.  He made a second application for land in 1855 from Muskingum County, Ohio.

The names of Evan’s children were compiled by Prudence (Rutherford) Adair.  Their names were:  Moses, Aaron, Sabret Scott, Nancy, John Henderson, Eliza Jane and Sally.

The previous information was published in the “Genealogical History of the Rutherford Family”



In the family of Philip and Elizabeth (Evans) Rutherford, there was an unnamed daughter who was about the correct age.

There are several names in the Philip Rutherford family that were also given in the Leonard and Mary E (Rutherford) Vandegrift family:  Philip, Evans, Samuel and Emzey, wife of Philip.

Philip and Emzey had a son born about 1837 in Lewis County, West Virginia, a county where Leonard and Mary were residing in 1830.


The 1840 Federal Census in Columbia, Meigs County, Ohio lists four names on the same page, all within a few lines of each other:  Elizabeth Stout, Evans Rutherford, Moses Rutherford and Leonard Vandegrift. Moses was married to Mary Lucinda Stout.  There was a Stout relationship in both families.

It was the lineage of John Rutherford, who arrived on the Warwicke in 1621, who were neighbors of Leonard and Mary Vandegrift in Meigs County, Ohio, in 1840.

Were these two families, in some way, related?  However, in both families, Mary is not accounted for.  The question remains, “Who were the father and mother of Mary E. Rutherford”?