William Culpepper of Kentucky

Male, #1398, (circa 1795 - )
Father*John Culpepper of Nash Co. NC (s 1766 - c 1818)
DNA* William has been proven by DNA and genealogical research to be a descendant of Erasmus Culpepper of Nash Co., NC, who is a great-grandson of Robert Culpepper of Lower Norfolk, VA. 
Research note* DNA testing of descendants of William Culpepper of Kentucky confirms that they descend from Benjamin Culpepper son of Robert. Benjamin has three known descendants who are the right age to be William's father. These three are all sons of Erasmus Culpepper: John Culpepper of Nash Co. NC, Matthew Culpepper and Osborne Culpepper of Nash Co., NC. Osborne can be ruled out because his descendants carry a unique DNA signature found with William's descendants. John was the only one of the three sons who had a son (Baalam) who headed west, settling in Tennessee. So probably William was the son of John and traveled west with his brother Baalam. However, it is conceivable that William was a son of Matthew or of another son of Benjamin who has never been identified. For purposes of this family tree, William has been assigned as the son of John Culpepper of Nash Co., NC, but this is far from proven.1 
Birth*circa 1795 William was born at North Carolina circa 1795. 
1820 Census*7 Aug 1820 William was listed as the head of a family on the 1820 Census at Henderson Co., Kentucky. Enumerated in census but otherwise not identified is 1 F16-26 who was probably William's wife..2 
Birth of Soncirca 1825 His son John Culpepper was born circa 1825 at Kentucky
Birth of Soncirca 1827 His son William Culpepper of Indiana was born circa 1827 at Kentucky
1830 Census*1 Jun 1830 William was listed as the head of a family on the 1830 Census at Union Co., Kentucky. Enumerated in census but otherwise not identified are 2 F0-5, 1 F5-10 and 1 F20-30..3 
Marriage*13 Aug 1835 He married Nancy Cavender at Henderson Co., Kentucky, on 13 Aug 1835.4 
Marriage*say 1838 He married Susan Lockhart at Kentucky say 1838. 
Research note Shirley Deem is searching for information on her ancestor, Joseph Henry Allen, b. TN 1845. In an October 1999 e-mail, she wrote:
     "He was orphaned, so have no clue at this point who his parents were, but he was bonded to apprenticeship to William Culpepper around 1851/2 to learn the blacksmith trade. In the 1860 census, he is listed as living with the Culpeppers along with another apprentice. My ancestor was treated quite badly by this family, and this is an excerpt from my notes in FTM:
     'Joseph Henry Allen was born in Columbia, Tenn. March 29, 1845. (his military records say 1843 because he lied about his age to go into the army) His parents are unknown, but the 1880 Census on Henry states his parents were both born in TN. Oral records state he was orphaned at age 7,and raised by an aunt who is unknown at this time. Then in 1850, (according to pension records), he was *bound out to a family by the name of William Culpepper, (who was a blacksmith) and resided at Mt. Vernon, IN. (Perhaps the aunt was the wife of W. Culpepper?) He was apprenticed to learned the blacksmith trade while living with them.
     (*Bound Out: (under Bond) According to historians, many family members were bound out, or Indentured servants. "Bound" referred to an apprenticeship and was often used with the word "out", as in "bound out" to a particular tradesman. A son might have been bound out by his father, widowed mother, or his guardian in order to get training in some kind of trade or craft. The master to whom the boy ws "bound" ws obliged to provide him with not only training for a trade, but to give him room, board, clothing, and perhaps a set sum of money when the term of indenture was completed. The term was generally for a period of seven years or until the boy reached the age of 21.)
     William Culpepper, mistreated Henry and he ran away. He crossed the river into Illinois, and lied about his age (he was 16) in order to join the War of the Rebellion. He was the blacksmith for his company after he entered the service. While standing guard at night, family legend has it, that he talked with a "rebel" across the creek or river from where he was at. As they talked, they realized that they were half brothers. This story is not clear, nor has it been verified. "
     The oral history/story continues that Henry returned to Culpepper's house in IN after the war. He wanted to give William Culpepper a beating like the beatings he gave Henry while he lived with them. Culpepper was very ill at the time and Henry could not follow through with what he had planned to do. Culpepper is supposed to have said that he didn't blame Him for what he felt he wanted to do because of the way he treated him. Henry had a change of heart because of Culpepper's remorse of what he had done to him, and also because he was ill.'"
     Shirley wrote: "My feeling is that possibly Culpepper's 1st wife may have been the "aunt" that was supposed to have raised him? 

Family 1


Family 2

Nancy Cavender (say 1810 - )
Marriage*13 Aug 1835 He married Nancy Cavender at Henderson Co., Kentucky, on 13 Aug 1835.4 

Family 3

Susan Lockhart (say 1810 - )
Marriage*say 1838 He married Susan Lockhart at Kentucky say 1838. 
ChartsHenry Culpeper of Lower Norfolk: DNA Status Chart (Male only, 8 generations)
Benjamin (son of Robert) Culpepper of Edgecombe Co., NC: Descendant Chart
Last Edited8 Aug 2011


  1. Warren L. Culpepper (#1942), Former publisher of Culpepper Connections, e-mail address.
  2. 1820 Federal Census, United States.
    Page 12, Unknown Township, Henderson Co., KY
    William Culpepper. 1 M16-26, 1 F16-26, 4 Slaves.
  3. 1830 Federal Census, United States.
    Page 047, Ancestry.com Image 27, Unknown Township, Union Co., KY
    William Culpepper, 1 M0-5, 1 M5-10, 1 M30-40, 2 F0-5, 1 F5-10, 1 F20-30, 0 slaves.
  4. Culpepper Connections Archives, Warren L. Culpepper.
    William Culpepper and Nancy Cavender, 13 Aug 1835, Henderson Co., KY.