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Newsletter 97.1.2

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William Prentis, Petersburg, VA
By Linus Joseph Dewald Jr., Editor

Addenda of 1 Feb 1998: William is probably the son of William Prentis of Williamsburg, VA. A further article on the subject will appear in a future issue.
    The following material is from "Kentucky: A History of the State," Battle, Perrin, & Kniffin, 2nd ed., 1885, Hancock Co.

William Prentis, was born in London, England about 1740-65; he was a printer by trade and edited the "Virginia Gazette and Petersburgh Intelligencer", one of the first papers ever published in the colonies. He was at one time mayor of the city of Petersburgh.

The names of William's wife and children are not presently known, except for his son, James Prentis who married Lucy W. Baugh.

James Prentis was born in Virginia, in about 1796 and grew to manhood in Virginia, and was educated for the law, being a graduate of William and Mary's College, but never followed his profession. In 1845 he moved to Kentucky and settled in Hancock County, KY, owning at one time about 650 acres, and half of the lots in the original plat of the village of Lewisport. He was also magistrate in the county for some years, engaged in mercantile pursuits for a short time. James died April 15, 1874. His wife, Lucy, The mother was also born in Petersburgh, Va., in 1800, and died in Hancock county 28 Aug 1865.

James and Lucy had ten children. Some of their names are not known, but the following were living in 1885:

  1. W. T. Prentis
  2. A. B. Prentis, in Petersburgh, VA
  3. Robert C. Prentis, in Lewisport, KY
  4. Margaret J. Prentis

W. T. PRENTIS, above, of Hancock County, KY was born in Petersburgh, Va., November 18, 1820. He received his schooling at Petersburgh, Va.; read medicine with Dr. Walter F. Jones for one year and then attended lectures at the Jefferson Medical College of Philadelphia, graduating in the class of 1844. In December of that year he moved to Lewisport, Ky., and entered upon the practice of medicine.

He remained at that point until 1849, and then moved to Yelvington, Daviess County, remained one year and then returning to Lewisport, he remained five years. His next move was to Bloomfield, Nelson County, where he practiced two years and then again returned to Lewisport. In 1862 he moved to Folsomville, Ind. In 1870 he again came back to Lewisport and remained until 1873, and then moved again to Yelvington, Ky. After practicing a short time he came back to Hancock County and practiced until 1877, when he again moved to Lewisport, where he was living in 1885.

Dr. Prentis had three wives:

  1. Miss Maria Stephens, married in 1846, daughter of Joseph Stephens, of Bullitt County, Ky. She was born in Bullitt County, Ky., and died at Yelvington, in 1850.

  2. Miss Sallie Duncan, married in 1855, daughter of George and Nancy Connelley) Duncan. She lady died in 1857.

  3. Miss Anne Butler, married in December, 1859, daughter of Caleb and Lucy W. (Payne) Butler. Anne Prentis was born in Albion, Edwards Co., Ill., in March, 1836. She and Dr. Prentis had six children:
    1. Earnest Prentis, at Golconda, Ill
    2. Halleck Prentis
    3. Boisseau Prentis
    4. William Prentis
    5. Lucy Prentis
    6. Robert B. Prentis

They were members of the Baptist Church, and Dr. Prentis was a member of the S. of T. and G. T. fraternities and has also served as school examiner for Hancock County for a number of years.

If you have any information which can help us identify any kin of the folks mentioned above, please contact us at dewald@prenticenet.com..

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