John Notley-Nancy Freeman

Some Lineage Controversy

There is some serious disagreement among published authors on how this Notley Maddox who married Nancy Ann Freeman is to be placed in the Maddox family.  We certainly have agreement and proof that this Notley married Freeman.  What we don't have is a firm indication of his first name (John) Notley Maddox or Notley Maddox.  Nor are we firm on his birth.  The disagreements come from noted and well respected (but not completely accurate) Fredonia Maddox Webster, and Roberta Wiley.  Fredonia publishes his birth as 1761, considerably younger than his wife Nancy Ann.  Ms. Wiley reports it as 15 Mar 1783.  The difficulty is that published reports tend to take on a truth of their own, e.g., if it was published, it must be right.  That is not true, of course.  We will present here what we have for those interested in this line.

Roberta Wiley's life work on the Maddox ancestry

The following is a heavily excerpted rendition of Maddox Family Records, Pertaining to Early Maddox Immigrants & Their Descendants, by Roberta V. Landrum Wiley, Parkville Mo, 1974.  Ms Wiley died 22 July 1977 and was buried in Waverly, Mo.


The Compiler (Wiley) is a descendant of Notley maddox and nancy Ann Freeman who were married in 1805 in Fauquier Co VA.  The Maddox family record was started about 1957 and included correspondence with other descendants of this line, including Harry Maddox of Decatur, Ind., and Karl Stecher of Washington DC, both now deceased.

Harry Maddox submitted information on this line in 1957 to Mrs. Fredonia Maddox Webster of Atlanta, Georgia, a descendant of Samuel Maddox, who was in the process of publishing a book, The Maddox Family of Maryland with Webster & Related Families.  Mrs. Webster hurriedly paced our Notley where she thought he belonged, but later we proved he was placed with the wrong parents.

Due to the name of Notley, we felt he belonged to the Samuel Maddox family, however another researcher has stated in his book that the Cornelius Maddox family also used the name of Notley in a few instances.

Further research needs to be done on some descendants of the Samuel Maddox line, namely:  1.  Justinian Maddox born 1761 wo married Judith Blakerby in Fauquier Co, Va.  2.  Charles Maddox, son of Notley Maddox and Mary Warren; 3  a Notley Maddox and wife are shown in the Prince George's Co, Md census of 1800 and are unplanned.  Any of these three would be of the proper age group to be the father of our Notley.

The information on Charles Maddox came too late to be researched in Tennessee.  It was recalled by one descendant of our Notley Maddox that her grandfather stated the family had come from Tennessee, however no documentary evidence has been found to this effect and records to date only confirm that our Notley was married in Fauquier Co, Va, in 1805, was in the Shenandoah Co. Va census 1810; in Fayette Co. Ky Census 1820 and died in Morgan Co. Ill.

In trying to locate Notley's parents, many Maddox families have been submitted consisting of from one single family to four and five generations.  Some of these have been listed as unplaced.

Rev. Silas Emmett Lucas, formerly of Vidalia, Ga,. is a descendant of Alexander Maddox of Maryland and over the years has accumulated much information on hat family and has plans to  publish a genealogy.

No research was done in Georgia as Mrs. Webster covered Samuel's line who settled there and Rev. Lucas is a descendant of the Georgia branch of Alexander's line.

In this book, I have attempted to consolidate my various Maddox notes, hoping they will be of aid to other Maddox researchers in the future.

Ms. Wiley (on page 74 of her manuscript) writes:


NOTLEY MADDOX, b. 15 Mar. 1783, d. 18 Feb. 1837, Morgan Co. Ill., buried on present Taylor Farm there (as of 1055060).  married 25 Nov. 1805, Warrenton, Fauquier Co., Va.  NANCY FREEMAN, b. 22 Jan. 1787, d. 29 Sept. 1864, buried in Hebron Methodist Church Cemetery, Morgan Co., Ill., dau. of Hezekiah and Mary (Robertson) Freeman.


1.  Elizabeth G. Maddox, b. 18 Dec. 1806, d. 1838, spinster.
2.  *  John William Maddox  b. 19 Sept. 1808, Culpepper Co. Va, d. 11 Oct. 1893, Ark.  married 3 times:  Elizabeth Haines, Susan C. Poisal and Avis Elliott.
3.  James R. Freeman Maddox b. 16 Sept. 1810, d.     m. 7 Jan. 1830 Fayette Co. Ky., Elizabeth Payne.  Son, Samuel, veteran of Civil War; dau. Eva Stout.
4.  Susan D. Maddox b. 18 Jan/ 1813, d.     m. ______ Parker.  One known dau., margaret parker who m. a Miller.  (or Rebecca parker)
5.  *  Mary Jane Maddox b. 14 Mar. 1815, Fayette Co. Ky., d. 4 Oct. 1853, m. as 2nd wife of Watson Sinclair.
6.  Thaddius G. Maddox b. 29 Mar. 1817, d. 25 Aug. 1839, bachelor.
7.  Margaret Ann Maddox b. 17 May 1819, d.    Morgan Co. Ill.  Married Henry Poisal; both buried Hebron Methodist Churchyard.
8.  *  Thomas Hezekiah Maddox b. 2 Mar. 822, d. 10 July 1896, m. marie Caroline Gaines ca. 1857.
9.  Sarah Rebecca Maddox b. 25 Dec. 1825, m. twice: _______ Williams and Henry Swain.  Removed to Kansas.  Nothing further known.
10.  Silas E. Maddox b. 25 Aug. 1828, d. 15 Aug. 1844, Ill.


A letter from Harry Maddox, dated June 1956 as follows:  (pg. 76, her manuscript)

"May 26, 1956 Aunt Ida Maddox wrote me Gr. Grandfather Maddox's Family Bible was left to my Great Aunt Margaret Ann (Maddox) Poisal, and when she died she left it to her niece "Rebecca Parker Miller" and all of her children are dec'd;  My Gr. Father Notley Maddox brought his family from Lexington, Ky, in the Fall of 1836 and he died the following year.  They settled on a farm a few miles from the Hebron Methodist Church and were Methodists s must have gone there to church.  My father was Thomas Hezekiah Maddox and mother was Marie Caroline (Gaines) Maddox, she died in 1880.

"The Wm. Thomas Maddox that Mrs. Webster refers to (in the Maddox Book), was my Father's nephew and the son of John William Maddox.  I corresponded with the gr. daughter of Wm. T. Maddox, Miss Loula Grace Erdman, c/o West Texas College, Canyon, Texas.  She teaches there, she also has written many books and has sent me seven of them.
Letter signed by Ida Maddox."

Letter from Harry Maddox dated July 5, 1956 Gives the following:

"...One of my grandfather's (Thomas Hezekiah Maddox) most prized possessions was a combination book case and desk, a handmade article, that is about six feet high and 36 to 40 inches wide.  The lower section has three deep drawers and the top section three shelves for books.  Between these is a flat surface for writing, etc.

" Below is the history of it as written to me by Aunt Ida. M. Maddox.  I quote her.  'According to my knowledge, it was made in Scotland and given to my great, great grandfather as a wedding present, perhaps in the early seventeen hundreds or late sixteen hundreds.  It was brought to America in a sailing vessel and was handed down to the youngest son until it came to my father Thomas Hezekiah Maddox with instructions that it was to be left to his youngest child, either son or daughter and as I am the youngest, it is in my possession, and then it is to go to my oldest nephew, but as he has passed away and no further instructions were given, I suppose whoever gave those instructions thought it would be worn out by this time, and after more than two hundred years it is still in good condition, and I leave it to Harry Maddox or Warren Maddox.'  Signed Ida M. Maddox.

"Thomas Hezekiah Maddox was the youngest living son when his mother Ann Freeman died.  He had a younger brother Silas, who never married and died August 5, 18(24?)

The travels of this bookcase and desk would make a wonderful story in itself, as it was made in Scotland by a skilled craftsman, loaded in the small sailing vessel of those days, landing in a new country, passing through the Revolutionary War uncensored.  Perhaps moving from Maryland to Virginia and then between 1808 and 1820 over the mountains and through a road less forest covered country to the blue grass region of Kentucky, near Lexington, bridge less raw country to the grand prairie section of the new state of Illinois.  In 1836 it settled down in Morgan County, Illinois, and as of this date, July 4, 1956, still remains there.    (signed)  Harry A. Maddox

From Letter dated Aug. 8, 1956 from Harry Maddox:

"I do  remember great aunt margaret Ann Poisal.  Having no children of her own, I was rather a pet of hers.  I have a small kerosene lamp that she found at a camping spot in Missouri years before I was born, when she and her husband Henry Poisal, were either going or returning from Missouri.  In the same letter he also states:

"Unfortunately our Notley died in less than a year after moving to Illinois.  At that time 1837 there was no roads and no mail service, and apparently no further communication between our family and the other members of the family.  Notley's parents no doubt died in Virginia.  At the time of Notley's death the only grandchildren he could have had would be the children of your John W. and of course they would have been very small."

Another letter form Harry Maddox dated Feb. 26-27, 1957:

He relates that our Maddox line was placed in "The Maddox Family of Maryland" by Mrs. Fredonia Maddox Webster as:
    Samuel Maddox        Ann Notley
    Notley Maddox        Margaret Goldsmith
    Notley Maddox Jr.    Mary Warren
    Notley Maddox        Susannah

"The last Notley was ill and Apr. 23, 1761 made his will to provide for the future welfare of his wife Susannah and dau. Judith Warren Maddox and an unborn heir he 'hoped would be a son' and had a son born about Sept. 1761.  He was named John Notley Maddox.  He enlisted 2-7-1777 and served until March 1782...."

(Note the above line for "our" Notley Maddox is highly improbable.  Mrs. Webster's book states that John Notley (son of Notley and Susannah) was born 1761, however the Bible records given by harry Maddox shows our Notley was born 15 Mar, 1783.  As Susannah was with child in April 1761, the child would have been born in 1761.  The final settlement of the estate of Notley Maddox of St. Mary's Co, Md does not call the child by name and in fact does not state if it was male or female.  No documentary proof has been found to prove that Susannah gave birth to a son named John Notley.)
Harry Maddox's letter goes on to say: "...two years before my father died he told me his grandfather's name was JOHN NOTLEY, but he dropped the name John and also called himself Notley."  "...but we can not find any record to prove that.  I do remember my Dad saying that our Notley's father died when he was very young and he was raised by a relative."  "...I believe I wrote some time ago that our Notley's family Bible was destroyed in a fire over 50 years ago."

A letter dated Sept. 14, 1958 from Harry Maddox (citing "my grandfather's (Thomas Hezekiah Maddox) family Bible which I now have  (Bible, 1842)...It does not show the name of Ann Freeman, those names were given me by Loula Erdman.  It does show the date of Notley and Ann's marriage and names and birth of all their children, also the birth date of Notley and Ann, also date of death."    (Signed)  Harry Maddox.
NEWSPAPER ARTICLE ( on Death of Harry Maddox pg. 81, Wiley)

Harry A. Maddox born 10 Mar 1892, died 15 March 1964...Sarasota Fla., buried in Decatur, Ind.. ...Accountant, Secy. & Treasurer & Office Manager....(later)  Ft Wayne, Ind.   He was son of Peter Cartwright Maddox and martha jane Dunovan...Sons of the American Revolution...2nd degree Mason....

Webmaster's notes on Roberta Wiley

Her book of which I have only a photocopy was typed on an electric typewriter and dated 1974.  Her place of residence was written in it as Parkville, Mo, an historic suburb of Kansas City (and coincidentally the hometown of the Webmaster, Byron Maddox, who arrived some 20 years after she died)  The webmaster has not found a contact with Wiley's survivors but would be anxious to hear from them.   Her manuscript is indexed and reflects years of laborious work.  It contains many will transcripts, tax rolls, marriage notations, census lists, private letters, newspaper clippings, Bible notes, and quotes from various authors who have written on Maddox lines over 200 years, including even a few notes from English Maddoxes..  She not only treats her own lines after Maddox, but  the Samuel of St. Mary's MD line (which is probably hers--she would not place her (John) Notley) as well as details on lines of Alexander of Northhampton VA, Henry Maddox Immigrant to Massachusetts, John Maddox of Goochland, VA, Cornelius of Charles County, MD, and miscellaneous others.  She treats a number of allied families including Warren, Compton.  It is an impressive work which evidently took many years of her life to create.  Some letters are dated 1948 and earlier.  It is mostly a compilation of both official and private resources--many of which are relatively obscure, so many years later.  And her sources are fairly well documented throughout her 226 page manuscript.  One assumes her library collection of notes would have been very impressive and the webmaster hopes they were saved and will resurface someday.  Oh but if the Internet would have been around in Roberta Wiley's time!

Nearly thirty years has passed since Wiley wrote her works and her pertinent passages on the Notley - Freeman immediate family are presented her.  If you have subsequent information which she did not have, the Webmaster would be interested in your comments and documentation to publish here.