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Location of Mush Island on the Staunton River

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Location of Mush Island on the Staunton River

Steven Denney (View posts)
Posted: 12 Nov 2001 9:48PM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: Denney, Doss, Pattey, Dillard, Willcox, Gilbert, Henson, Talbot, Farris, Vest, Dudley
I am trying to find the location of Mush Island which was located on the Staunton River. Apparently on the line between Pittsylvania and Campbell Counties.


John Denney was granted land on both sides of the Staunton River in the 1740s. The deed was recorded in the Lunenburg County records although it was issued before the creation of Lunenburg (while it was still part of Brunswick Co.). The 191 acres on the north side of the river was issued on April 5, 1748, and the second grant of 150 acres on the sside of the river including Mush Island was issued on the same date.

Denney’s line is mentioned on Feb 14, 1746, when Philip Wilson entered 50 acres of land on the South Side of the Stanton River beginning on Denny’s Line and running up to Nix’s line. The land was later transferred to Phillip
Synson (Hynson?)

On January 8, 1751, John and Sarah sold 100 acres on the South side of the river to George Willcox for 10 pounds. The deed mentions that the transaction took place at Bears House on the Little Roanoke River. Witnesses to the deed were James Doss and James Patty.

On January 8, 1752, John sold the rest of his south of the river plantation (fifty acres) to James Patty for 10 pounds. Again the deed mentions at Bears House above the upper end of Mush Island in Staunton River. Witnesses to this deed were Thomas Dillard, Jr., George Willcock, and
James Doss.

After these sales, none of John Denney's land was left in what would become Pittsylvania, unless Mush Island was considered part of the Pittsylvania. The rest of the land appears to be in what is now Campbell County

John Denney died in 1755 and left 100 acres of the North of the river tract to his son Zachariah Denney. The remainder of the tract was left to eldest son John Denney, Jr.

On November 22, 1756, Goerge Wilcocks of Halifax Co., and Mary His wife sold to Thomas Dillard, Jr., of same, for 25 pounds 100 acres beginning at a hickory on the southside of Stantons River below Mush Island, a place commonly called the bare hows (bear house), a large rock of stone on sd river side; which line and corner are agreed on by both parties. signed George Wilcocks and Mary Wilcocks. Witnessed Thomas Dillard, Sr., Jas. Dillard, Joseph Farris, Jane East.

On Decmeber 10, 1758, James Pattey made out his last will and testament in which he provided for his son Jessey Pattey to receive the plantation on which James had lived upon the death of Patteys widow Saray. The will was
witnessed by Thomas Doss, William Via, and Charles Doss. It was proven at May 1759 County Court in Halifax County.

Then on Dec 5, 1767 in Pittsylvania County Jesse Pattey of Pittsylvania County of the one part sold to Aquilla Gilbert and Elizabeth his wife of Bedford County of the other part 77 acres of land in Pittsylvania County opposite to Mush Island...Between the lands of Thomas Dillard, Jr. and James Doss. Sum of 50 dollars. Wintesses were William
Howard, Elizabeth Gilbert, Robert Sexton, and Dan Gilbert.

As for the rest of the land on the north side of the river... It was later included in what is now Campbell County.

We do know that John Denney, Jr. sold his land in Bedford (now Campbell) County to Jacob Farris of of Halifax County on Feb 16, 1765.

At some point, Zachariah Denney sold his north of the Staunton land to his brother John, the deed was recorded on Sept 9, 1767, and was witnessed by William Dudley, John Hayes, Phillip and Judith Vest. in Bedford County. The actual sale must have taken place earlier as on July 23, 1766 the same land was sold by John Denney, Jr. to John Talbot for 100 dollars.


Where is Mush Island and what was the Bear's House? Was it a rock formation or the name that Denney gave to his home?
SubjectAuthorDate Posted
Steven Denney 13 Nov 2001 4:48AM GMT 
badpuppy1 15 Nov 2001 1:26PM GMT 
SSpaulding404... 29 Apr 2012 2:37AM GMT 
historymyster... 31 Aug 2013 8:06AM GMT 
MarshaMoses 1 Sep 2013 10:32PM GMT 
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