Charles Marion Culpepper (Apocryphal)1

Male, #62579, (8 Dec 1739 - )
Father*Sam Low Culpepper (Apocryphal) (3 Jul 1692 - )
Name-AltSpell This surname is sometimes spelled Culpeper. 
Birth*8 Dec 1739 He was born on 8 Dec 1739 at Culpeper Co., Virginia
Research note*1999 One Version of the "Apocryphal Culpepper" Genealogy: Charles Marion Culpepper was born in Culpeper County‚ VA‚ 8 Dec 1739. Height 5 feet 7 inches; weight 120 lbs; color of eyes blue; complexion dark; hair very black. Special marks of identification: was left-handed; large mole on body; a double thumb on right hand.
Culpepper Connections Commentary: Culpeper Co., VA was created in 1749 from Orange Co., VA‚ and no Culpeper/Culpepper appears in marriage‚ land‚ or probate records from either county.

Apocryphal: Lived with his parents until their death. Was converted‚ called to preach‚ and became a Methodist Circuit rider in Virginia and Maryland. Though of limited educational attainments‚ was a speaker and preacher of unusual ability‚ being an orator of the old school.
Culpepper Connections: Methodist records do not mention his ordination.

Apocryphal: It was on 3 Jun 1773 that he married Laura Lee‚ the aunt of Harry Lee known in history as "Light-horse-Harry‚" she was a sweet singer and therefore of great help to her preacher husband.
Culpepper Connections: Charles Marion Culpepper is not mentioned in Lee family genealogies and no record of this marriage has been found.

Apocryphal: To this union four children were born:
     1. John William Culpepper
     Culpepper Connections: This is supposed to be John Culpepper, husband of Nancy Gillespie‚ and the subject of considerable research by Lew Griffin (See John Culpepper of Randolph Co., AL) . A grandson‚ Joseph Richard Culpepper‚ after reading this history wrote to his father‚ Rev. Lewis Peek Culpepper‚ a son of John Culpepper‚ and then to his cousin‚ Rev. George Bright Culpepper‚ who also had a copy of the history: "I wrote to Father asking him to give me all the information he could relative to his father‚ grandfather‚ etc. He knows nothing farther back than his grandfather who was John instead of Charles Marion…"

     2. Edgar Allen Culpepper—born 10 May 1777. Married 1 Jan 1800 to Grace Taylor. That Spring moved to Eastern Tennessee where a large family was raised consisting of seven boys and four girls. There is no further record‚ except of his death‚ which took place Jun 3 1852‚ so far as is known‚ save that founded in tradition. Those however claiming Edgar as their primogenitor are found in TN‚ MS‚ AR‚ and MO.
     Culpepper Connections: There is no record of this marriage. Nor does this family appear in the 1800 census of Tennessee‚ or in any subsequent census records.

     3. Sarah Jane Culpepper—born 29 Aug 1779. Married on 29 Jun 1803 to Dr. Lovik Pierce‚ the father of Bishop Pierce. There were six children‚ three boys and three girls. All lived and married and raised large families.
     Culpepper Connections: According to the North Carolina Historical and Genealogical Register, Vol. 1, No. 4 (Oct. 1900), Rev. Lovick Pierce, D.D., of Georgia was the son of Philip Pierce and Lydia Culpepper and he was the father of Bishop George F. Pierce of the Methodist Episcopal Church South. According to The Pierces and Their Posterity compiled by Clara Waldron Pierce, James Pierce McClurkin and Graham L. Pierce (printed and bound by the Parthenon Press, n.d.) p. 76, there was a Lovick Pierce, Jr. and Sr. and Lovick Pierce, Sr. was the son of Phillip and Martha (Andrews) Pierce and Lovick Pierce, Sr. was the husband of Lydia Culpepper.

     4. Sally Ann Culpepper—born 20 Nov 1780‚ married Walter P. Jones‚ a rich planter of true American stock. There were eight children‚ six boys and two girls.
     Culpepper Connections: Sally is a nickname for Sarah‚ so the two girls had the same first name. No record of this marriage has ever been found.

Apocryphal: When the Fairfax estate in Virginia‚ which came to him by his wife Catherine, was confiscated in the year 1780‚ Charles Marion and his brother Alfred laid claim to that portion of the estate which their father Sam Low had been manager of‚ and where all his children were born and raised.
Culpepper Connections: The "him" appears to refer to Thomas, fifth Lord Fairfax. Catherine Culpeper‚ was the daughter of Thomas‚ the second Lord Culpeper. Thomas‚ fifth Lord Fairfax died in 1710 and his wife‚ Catherine‚ died in 1719. The land passed to their son‚ Thomas‚ sixth Lord Fairfax and, on his death in 1781‚ the land passed to his brother‚ Robert‚ seventh Lord Fairfax with a sixth interest to his nephew‚ Denney Martin. They owned the land in 1786 when the Virginia Assembly abolished the proprietorship. 

Apocryphal: They were deeded by the Virginia Council ten thousand acres of land‚ the greater part lying in Culpeper Co., VA.
Culpepper Connections: As noted above‚ no Culpeper/Culpepper appears in marriage‚ land‚ or probate records of Culpeper Co.‚ VA.

Apocryphal: It was on 11 Feb 1794 that he died‚ leaving his children not only riches in land‚ but the goodly heritage of a Godly life.
Culpepper Connections: No mention of Charles Marion Culpeper has ever been found in any record‚ in Virginia‚ or elsewhere.2,3 
Last Edited28 Jul 2011


  1. This individual is fictitious. All of the above genealogical and historical claims stem
    from a fascinating version of early American Culpepper genealogy that started circulating among Culpepper family members in the early 1900's, perhaps even earlier. Unfortunately, bits and pieces from this fictional genealogy are now widely diseminated on the Internet.
         It contained an account of a brave patriot overthrowing a tyrant, becoming the Governor of Virginia, and being called the father of Charleston.
         There was a farm boy who went to England to be educated at Oxford, and in a story befitting a book of fairy tales, he finds and marries his childhood sweetheart.
         One Culpepper marries a beautiful Indian half-breed, faithfully works as overseer on a plantation that once belonged to his ancestors, and his sons eventually receive a huge land grant as recompense for the family plantation having been stolen.
         Another becomes a highly successful orator/preacher winning many souls to Christ.
         A Culpepper daughter marries into the family of a famous American patriot. In fact, virtually all of the Culpepper daughters in this story marry quite well.
         One reprobate son was included for good measure. A whiskey maker, he changes his surname to Pepper to shield his pious mother from disgrace.
         Also, each of the major characters was described in extraordinarily precise physical detail.

    Human nature makes any reader want to embrace this detailed and rich genealogical account as the true story of his or her ancestors. And for several generations, this genealogy has been accepted by many as the gospel, and passed along to the next.
         However, modern day researchers attempting to verify the facts encounter many difficulties. Most of the assertions are without proof, but many of them should be provable if they were true. And some of the claims are clearly at odds with the historical record.
         All Culpeppers and Culpepper descendants can certainly be inspired by the understanding that we are members of a quite honorable and accomplished family. Within the provable genealogical record we can find much to be proud of in our Culpepper ancestral history, and we can do so without resorting to imaginative creation.
         The Culpepper Connections commentary on this and connected pages was primarily authored by Lewis W. Griffin, Jr. of Phoenix, AZ, and edited by Warren L. Culpepper of Atlanta, GA. It is our considered opinion that the genealogical account reported in them is completely fictitious. If you have any facts to add to our analysis, or if you wish to dispute our conclusion, we would welcome hearing from you.
  2. Warren L. Culpepper (#1942), Former publisher of Culpepper Connections, e-mail address.
  3. Lewis W. Griffin Jr. (#47), e-mail address.