A Family History Newsletter
Volume 2, Number 1
1st Quarter 2003
The Ancestors and Descendants of
Bertram Thomas Tullis (1871-1930)
Part 1: Jonathan and Ezra Tullis
Compiled in 1983 by his son, John Louis Tullis, M.D.
(1911 - 1993)
Editor’s Note: Several months ago I came in email contact
with Jonathan Tullis of Oregon. He provided me with a copy of a manuscript his
late great-uncle, Dr. John Louis Tullis, had written in 1983 about his Tullis
family tree. That manuscript will now be reproduced, exactly as John wrote it,
in a series of articles starting with this one. Although John started with
"The First Generation", which was Moses Tullis and Mary Elizabeth Van
Dyke, I’m skipping that generation for now since many others have also written
about their family. A separate article specifically addressing that family and
the information about them from all sources will be presented in the future.
This article begins with "The Second Generation", Jonathan Tullis, and
"The Third Generation", Ezra Tullis (grandfather and father of David
L. Tullis also profiled in this issue). The references noted are explained at
the end; appendices mentioned are not included.
SECOND GENERATION IN THE BERT T. TULLIS LINE
the 4th son of Moses and Mary Elizabeth Tullis, migrated to the western
territory sometime after his father's death in 1777. In the period 1778 to
l802 Jonathan's whereabouts are not known with certainty. There is a
possibility he may have been one Captain Jonathan Tullis who is named on the
1787 tax list filed by Assessor John Hammer in Washington Co., Tennessee as
follows: Captain Jonathan Tullis, 400 acres, 1 poll, 1 femme covert, 2 male
infants, 2 female infants". ("l poll" indicates that the
taxpayer was under 50 years of age and was therefore subject to a poll tax
"1 femme covert" means 1 married woman.) Captain Jonathan Tullis
does not appear on the tax lists after 1799. (L. & E. Little)
Jonathan was born circa 1755. In 1787 he would have been 32 years old. The
Captain's family in 1787 consisted of a wife and 4 infants. One of
"our" Jonathan's sons, Ezra, was born in Virginia March 18, 1783.
Thus the dates for father and son in Tennessee in 1787 are comparable with
the dates for father and son who moved to Ohio in 1802 and settled there
permanently. Another interesting date correlation occurs in a deed filed at
the Jonesboro Co. C.H., Johnson City, Tennessee dated Dec. 1, 1800 which
states: "Jonathan Tullis sold 399 acres more or less for
$l,500.00". The date fits the picture, but again Jonathan's wife is not
named in the deed of sale. A search is now underway for the deed of purchase
which if it exists and can be found may list the name of Jonathan's wife,
our ancestor. (L. & E. Little)
is important to recall that in the 18th and early part of the 19th centuries
the territory from which the present states of Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee
were formed existed as primeval wilderness. (See appended Xerox copy of
"Early Dayton History). Many early settlers simply staked out a tract
of land, cleared it, built a log cabin on it and planted crops on it. In
other words they claimed the land by squatter's rights and their success in
warding off Indian raids. In Ohio, for instance, the Indians fought for 40
years with raiding parties and sometimes full scale battles before a lasting
peace was achieved with the signing of the Treaty of Greene Ville in 1794
after General Anthony Wayne's victory over Chief Little Turtle and his army
of two thousand Miami warriors in the battle of Fallen Timbers. (History of
Ohio, Vol. I) Life in early Tennessee was probably much the same as in early
Ohio. The settlers formed companies of militiamen for their mutual
protection. One Jonathan Tullis was possibly the Captain of such a company.
first, presently known, certain reference concerning our Jonathan after he
witnessed his father's will is in the form of a deed of land purchase dated
Sept. 15, 1802 on file at the Warren Co. C.H. Lebanon, Ohio. It states that
Jonathan Dayton of Elizabethtown, N.J. transferred to Jonathan Tullis of
Hamilton Co., Ohio 200 acres of land for a consideration to $600.00. The
land was located in Section 33, Township 4, Range 3, Territory northwest of
the Ohio River. The land is now a part of Union Township, Warren Co. (L.
& E. Little)
Co. bordering on the Ohio River included in 1802, as it had for several
years before that date and continues to do today, the major population
center in southwestern Ohio, the city of Cincinnati. It would be a likely
stop-off for a migrant from Tennessee looking for land to buy in the area.
Warren Co. abuts the northeast corner of Hamilton Co. Jonathan's brothers
Aaron and Amos were in Warren Co. by 1800 and sister Sarah and her husband
Timothy Sewell were in Clinton Co., which abuts the eastern border of Warren
Co. (Note: Many of the original counties contained large areas which as the
population increased were sectioned off to form new counties. Thus land
purchased in one county may belong to a different county today. The
following table indicates the years of "Erection and Organization"
of some of the counties in Ohio of particular interest to us (History of
Ohio, Vol. II).
1790, Warren 1803, Montgomery 1803,
Champaign 1805, Miami 1807, Clinton 1810
was admitted to Statehood in the Union in 1803, although not officially
until 1953! (See appended Xerox account) Jonathan Tullis is listed as a
taxpayer in Warren Co. in the 1810 records. In the 1820 Census of Ohio a J.
Tullis is listed as a resident of Turtle Creek Township, Warren Co. (A.
Tullis, Salem Township; D. Tullis, Turtle Creek Township; and W. Tullis,
Union Township all in Warren Co. are also listed. Aaron Tullis and members
of his family are listed as residents of Concord Township, Miami Co.) The
number of persons and their stated ages in the "J" Tullis
household are inconsistent with those verified data for the Jonathan Tullis
funds accumulated in the Federal Treasury from the sale of Congressional
Lands to private buyers, Congress appropriated a portion to the State for
the construction of roads. A grant for $75.00 was received by Warren Co. for
the construction of a road from Lebanon to Hami1ton. In 1820 "Jonathan
Tullis, Commissioner" signed the receipt for the money. (L. & E.
Jan. 8, 1818 a deed was recorded at the Champaign Co. C.H. Urbana, Ohio
(Deed Book D, page 202) stating that Jonathan Tullis and his wife, Nancy,
sold to Jonathan Tullis, Jr. 9 1/2 acres of land lying between the Miami
Rivers for $400.00.
Nancy Tullis named in the deed to Jonathan, Jr. was Jonathan Sr's second
wife. The only information we have about his first wife, Mary, comes from an
entry in a Tullis family Bible. Zillah Tullis Owen was able in 1944 to
locate the Bible at the home of a "distant cousin" living in
nearby Urbana, Ohio. She submitted the following list she copied of the
entries in the Bible.
Tullis and Mary Blue, Feb. 13, 1806.
Tullis and Rebecca Rigdon, Sept. 24, 1829.
Spry and Mary Tullis, Feb. 24, 1831.
Tullis, son of Jonathan Tullis and Mary his wife, born Mar. 15, 1783.
Blue, daughter of John Blue and Catherine his wife, born Mar. 20, 1778.
of Ezra and Mary his wife:
L. Tullis, born Mar. 30, 1807
L. Tullis, born Oct. 17, 1808
Tullis, born May 13, 1811
Tullis, born Feb. 27, 1813.
C. Tullis, born Feb. 19, 1815.
T. Tullis, born Jan. 7, 1817.
of Jonathan and Rebecca his wife:
wife Mary was probably a native of Virginia and Jonathan and Mary were
probably married in Virginia. No record of the marriage has been found. It
is known that their first son was born in Virginia. (Beer's History of
Champaign Co. Ohio under David L. Tullis - Xerox copy appended.)
was married a second time to the widow, Nancy (Darke) Welsh, on Nov. 15,
1811 in Ross Co., Ohio. Nancy was born May 3l, 1769 in Berkeley Co., Va.,
married the Rev. Samuel I. Welsh, a Methodist Circuit Rider, on Mar. 29,
1798 in Berkeley Co., Va. They had four children and migrated to Ross Co.,
Ohio about 1805. The Rev. Welsh died there circa 1806. One child, David H.
Tullis was born to Jonathan and Nancy (L. & E. Little).
died intestate circa 1831, but the court ordered probate of his estate,
dated June 4, 183l, lists his heirs as follows: Ezra, Harvey, Jonathan, Jr.
and John W., sons, Peter Sewell (identified as the widower of a deceased
daughter) and Solomon Weston (not otherwise identified - perhaps he was a
second son-in-law?) (L. & E. Little)
place of burial is unknown. Nancy, his second wife, died 8, 1839. Her body
is buried in the Red Lion Cemetery, Lebanon, Ohio.
THIRD GENERATION IN THE BERT T. TULLIS LINE
the family Bible entries we know that Ezra Tullis, son of Jonathan and Mary
Tullis, was born March 18, 1783 and that he married Mary Blue, daughter of
John and Catherine Blue on Feb. 13, 1806. (Warren Co., Groom's Index
Marriage Record Book I, Page 10, Entry 83 lists Blew, Mary 2/12/1806 Ezra
Tullis). Ezra's grave marker in the Maple Grove Cemetery, Goshen Township,
Mechanicsburg, Ohio shows his date of birth as above and his date of death
as April 5, 1842. The same grave marker indicates that Mary Tullis, his
wife, was born March 20, 1777 and died March 20, 1843. Ezra and Mary were
first buried in the "old cemetery" near the town square in
Mechanicsburg, but when it was scheduled to go out of existence their
grandson, John Cartmell Tullis, had their remains reburied in the present
location. (per Zillah Tullis Owen).
W. H. Beers and Co. in the 1880's published a series of books dealing with
the history of Ohio Counties. Copies are available at the Warren County
Historical Society, Lebanon, Ohio. Their 1881 publication entitled "The
History of Champaign County, Ohio", page 900, under the David Tullis
entry, it is written that "Ezra and Mary (Blue) Tullis were pioneers of
Warren Co. and natives of Virginia". The text continues, "When
David was a small boy (note: he was born Oct. 17, 1808) his parents
pioneered their way into the wilds of Champaign County and here passed the
remainder of their lives raising a family of four sons and two daughters to
was 19 years old when his father Jonathan Tullis purchased in 1802 land in
Union Township, Warren Co., Ohio. Ezra's first known land purchase was that
recorded in 1828 in Deed Book H. page 351 Champaign Co. C.H., Urbana, Ohio.
Ohio Census of 1830, Goshen Township, Champaign County lists "Ezra
Tullis, Head of Household" as follows:
10 and under 15 years
15 and under 20 years
20 and under 30 years
40 and under 50 years
S. age 13 in 1830
Carter age 15 in 1830
L. age 22 in 1830
age 47 in 1830
of 15 and under 20 years
of 40 and under 50 years
age 19, Rebecca age 17 in 1830
age 53 in 1830 (somehow Mary slipped into a lower age bracket!)
L. Tullis, eldest son of Ezra and Mary, married Rebecca Rigdon Sept. 24,
1829 and is listed as Head of Household in 1830 Census, Mechanicsburg,
Champaign County: 1 Free white male of 30 and under 40 years, 1 Free white
female of 20 and under 30 years. (Jonathan was 23 years old in 1830 and
therefore gained an age bracket.)
The references to "L. & E. Little" refer to
Lawrence and Emily (Tullis) Little. This is the same Emily (Tullis) Little
mentioned in the article about the portraits of David L. Tullis. Emily was the
owner of the original portrait of David Tullis. As John Tullis states in his
Acknowledgements: "Special thanks are due Lawrence and Emily Tullis Little
who are themselves preparing an in-depth genealogical review of a Tullis family
branch closely related to ours. Mrs. Little is descended from Henry Tullis, son
of David L. ... The Littles have made available to me portions of early drafts
of their manuscript, ‘The Tullis Family’ which is not yet in final
form." That manuscript, entitled "A Record of Descendents of Moses
Tullis, Sr., of Berkeley Co., VA and Thomas Little of Hunterdon Co., NJ",
is now available at the DAR Library in Washington, DC. And speaking of the DAR,
I understand from "Tullis Trees" subscriber Waunita Gibbons that
Jonathan Tullis, profiled above, is recognized by the DAR as a Revolutionary
Soldier from his service in a militia unit in Berkeley Co, VA. Source:
"Muster and Pay Rolls of the War of the Revolution, 1775-1783",
reprint from the New York Historical Society, 1914, 1915, 1996; p.643.