Trumbold Families

Thomas Darne


As with much family history in the early 1700s, there is some confusion in the genealogy community about which data belongs with which person.  There are several men named Thomas, Henry, John and William.  I have used primarily land records and wills to establish Thomas Darne and his wife, Mary, as our earliest ancestors.  We have no birth date but it is reasonable to assume that he was born about 1700-1710 and received the land grant when he was about 30 years old.  There is also no record that I have found of Mary’s maiden name or her vital statistics. 


Thomas Darnes of Westmoreland County, Virginia, received a grant of 140 acres in Stafford County (now Fairfax) from Lord Fairfax on May 26, 17301.  This land was adjacent to that of Dorrel and William Gunnel on the main branch of Four Mile Run. 


We can connect the Henry who married Penelope Minor to this Thomas Darne because of the land transaction on this property.  In 1754 a deed in Fairfax County shows that Thomas gave this 140 acres of land to his son, Henry2.  Thomas is shown as a "joyner" on this deed.  Henry and Penny, his wife, sold this land to William Barry and his wife, Sarah, in 1783.  This arrangement is reaffirmed in a deed from William Barry to Samuel Adams in 17883 [a Thomas Darne witnessed that 1788 document, but it may not be the original patent grantee].


On March 17, 1743, Thomas Darns and his wife, Mary, received a lease from Sampson Darroll for another 200 acres for the life of them or their sons, Henry and Allen, whoever should live longest4.  This land was on Pimmits Run in Fairfax County and the rent was 630 pounds of tobacco yearly.  The Darnes’ lands were along what are now Westmoreland, Kirby and Williamsburg Roads near the Route 66 Parkway and Dulles Airport Access Road.


Allen may have passed away because the same arrangement is made on May 16, 1749, for Thomas, Mary and their sons, Henry and John.  We have no further record of an Allen Darne and I have yet to research this John’s story but believe that this is the John who married Hannah Follin an died in 1821 with a will. 


Information about Thomas and Mary’s children is scarce.  I will propose my best guesses below:

            Henry, born about 1741

            Allen, born about 1743, died before 1749

            John, born about 1746


The following records are also available for a Thomas Darne which may not be our ancestor:


·         In June 27, 1785, a Thomas Darne held a mortgage for 100 acres on Four Mile Run from Thomas Pearson. Further research needs to be done to see if Darne was repaid or received the land in July 1786.

·         In 1787, a Thomas Darne bought a Negro, Mall, and her children, Henly and Anne, from Thomas Moody.

·         A Thomas Darne also received a lease for 190 acres from Josiah Watson in 1794 for a plot called "Springfield". [Fairfax County Deed Book 1794-1795, pages 237-240]


Source Notes


1.      Gertrude E. Gray : Virginia Northern Neck Land Grants 1694-1742, Grant c-62, page 103, Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., Baltimore, 1987.

2.      Fairfax County Deed Book C, pages 845-847, Thomas Darnes to Henry Darnes, December 9, 1754.

3.      Fairfax County Deed Book 4, 1788-1789, pages 220-222, William Barry to Samuel Adams. [William Barry sold 29 acres of this parcel to Henry Gunnell, Junr, on December 15, 1783, Fairfax County Deed Book 1783-1784, pages 120-124.]

4.      Fairfax County Deed Book, pages 30-33, Sampson Darroll to Thomas Darns.