The Heritage of Daniel Haston


David Hastings of Augusta County, VA
Died in 1776

Someone by the name of "David Hastings" or "David Hesten" died in Augusta County, VA (predominantly Scots-Irish community) in the latter part of 1776.  Was he related, in some way, to Daniel Haston, perhaps Daniel's father, brother, or uncle? 

We know that Daniel Haston's son, David, was born on May 6, 1777 in Virginia.  Thus, Daniel's wife would have been pregnant with "our" David when the Augusta County, VA "David Hastings/Hesten" died.  Was our David Haston named for him?

There are a few references in Lyman Chalkley's Chronicles of the Scotch-Irish Settlement in Virginia to some other men named Hastings or Heastane who lived in that area in the 1700s.

  • July 6, 1742 - Robert Heastane bought land (Chalkley, page 525 of Volume I)
  • May 21, 1754 - Robert Hastings witnessed James Brown's estate sale (Chalkley, page 35 of Volume III)
  • November 20, 1754 - Robert Hastings was paid for guarding the jail (Chalkley, page 64 of Volume I)
  • April 9, 1799 - James Hastings made a court deposition in Rockbridge, VA because he was about to leave the state (Chalkley, page 22 of Volume III)

However, the Robert Heastane/Hastings seems to have been "Robert Huston." This man's surname, in the original documents transcribed by Lyman Chalkley, generally appears to have been "Huston."  Robert Huston / Houston was the grandfather of General Sam Houston who was later Governor of Tennessee and Texas.  (Source: The Rev. Samuel Houston, V.D.M. by George West Diehl (Verona, VA: McClure Press, 1970) 

To this point (October 2004), we do not know anything about the family with which "David Hastings / Hesten" was associated.  Nor do we have any documented (or additional strong circumstantial) evidence that would identify him with the Daniel Haston family.

Please contact us if you have any further information related to the identity of this Augusta County, VA "David Hastings / Hasten" or any clues that might possibly connect him to the family of the Daniel Haston of this website.

Main Source:  Chronicles of the Scotch-Irish Settlement in Virginia (Volumes I, II, & III) by Lyman Chalkley (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1965)

December 18, 1776

Someone by the name of "David Hastings" died in Augusta County, VA in the latter part of 1776.  On December 18, 1776 the administration of his estate was granted to Richard Madison.  John Parris, Jacob Peck, James Hall, and Daniel Kidd were assigned to appraise his estate.    

Administration of David Hastings Estate 1776 in VA
I checked the Virginia Land, Marriage, and Probate Records:  1639-1850 database at, and land records show Daniel Kidd, Jacob Peck, and James Hill (David's appraisers) all living on town lots in Staunton at the time of his death.  Daniel Kidd was also overseer of the streets of Staunton on 19 Mar 1776.  The only entry for David Hastings/Hastens (in the above database) was the appraisal of his estate, as posted at your website.  Too bad there were no land records, but the appearance of his appraisers in Staunton makes it virtually certain that was David's residence as well.

The above database shows a William and Robert Brown on Culton's Branch of North River of Shenandoah River, in 1752. William was still on the North River Shenandoah, close to the mouth of Cook's Creek, in 1763.  Not sure if he was the same William Brown on Christian's Creek, in 1766.  Records for this Brown family continued for several years, but I did not pursue because they were already in Virginia when your Brown family should have been in Massachusetts.  A deeper study might determine if there were two separate Brown families in that arriving after 1775.     -Beverly Neises  (  10-04-2004

February 17, 1778

The appraisement of this (David Hestin) estate, made by Jacob Peck, James Hill ("Hall" as per 1776 document), and Daniel Kidd, was recorded on February 17, 1778.  The goods from the estate were sold on an "expedition against the Cherokees," apparently to members a militia group.

David Hestin's estate inventory consisted only of a dozen or so items, including basic clothing and hunting or militia paraphernalia.  What does this tell us about him? 

Source:  Pages 544-545 in Abstracts of Wills of Augusta County, VA - Will Book V

Pursuant to an order of Court to us directed we h__ appraised one J__ of the Estate of David Hestens deced
To…                                                 ? 15  O

                                      Daniel Kidd
                                      James Hill
                                      Jacob Peck

At a Court held for Augusta County February the 17th 1778
This appraisement of the Estate of David Hastens deced being returned is Ordered to be Recorded.

An Inventory of the goods and chattles of
David Hastens deceased

1 Hunting Shirt
1 P Shoes
1 P Leather Britches
1 Shott pouch and Powder Horn
1 Hoppis
1 Cuttoe knife
1 Wi___ Top
1 P Bullett Moles
1 Cuttoe Knife ____
1 P Buckles
1 Gun Case
1 Hatt

The above goods and chattles were sold on the expedition against the Cherokees to the following Persons before Appraised

Capt. John Gilmore 1 Gun Case
Robert McClure 1 P Moles and Wi__  Top
Valentine Jones 1 Hatt
Capt. Wm. Christian  1 shot bag and powder horn for Thos. Berry
Gawin Hamilton 1 Hoppis
Samuel McGill 1 Cuttoe Knife
Samuel Henderson 1 P Shoes & Buckles
William Ritchey 1 Garter
Jas. McGloughlin 1 P Garters
Jas. Cuddy 1 Hunting Shirt and Leather Britches
Jos. Guinn 1 Knife
At a Court held for Augusta County February the 17th 1778

This sale of the Estate of David Hastens deceased being returned is ordered to be Recorded.                                    (Signature?)

Cherokee Expedition of 1776

Colonel "Wm. Christian" was mentioned in David Hestin's 1778 estate settlement, as one of the men who purchased David's shot bag and powder horn.  In the Fall of 1776, Colonel William Christian (from Augusta County, VA) led a force of 1,200 to 2,000 riflemen against the Cherokee villages in what is now southeastern Tennessee.  (Read More)

David Hasten/Hastings very possibly took part in this Cherokee Expedition of 1776.  Col. Christian's men marched toward the Cherokee towns beginning on October 6, 1776; they camped near the Indian towns for about six weeks and then returned to their homes on about December 1, 1776.  That timetable fits perfectly with the notice of David's death in Augusta County, VA court records on December 18, 1776.  Although there was little or no battle engagement with the Indians during this 1776 expedition, David probably died on this expedition, which explains why his personal belongings were dispersed to his fellow soldiers.  Notice that his estate inventory included only the clothes on his back and what looked like a soldier's gear.

Source for 1776 Cherokee expedition information: John Denton, Patriot & Pioneer by David W Templin (in the Smokey Mountain Historical Society Newsletter)

If David did take part in this Cherokee expedition of 1776,  he was probably too young to have been the father of our Daniel Haston.  He could have been Daniel's brother.  It seems fairly certain that David's residence was in Staunton, VA (of Augusta County) at the time of his death.  Unfortunately, the court records are silent as to whether or not he had a wife and young children.  If married, one would think that his wife would have been mentioned in the estate settlement.  Was his wife related to one of the appraisers?

Administrators of David Hastings' Estate

Richard Madison (born c. 1754), administrator of David Hastings' estate, was the Augusta County, VA clerk.  He was from a fairly prominent family and his brother became the governor of Kentucky.  All brothers in that family were military officers, lawyers, etc.  His family records are posted at, and it seems he was in no way related to David Hasten/Hastings.

It is not clear if Jacob Peck, James Hill, and Daniel Kidd were David's neighbors, relatives, close friends, or merely townsmen.  Daniel Kidd was born about 1711 in Middlesex, VA, so it seems he was a much older man than David Hastings.  According to submitters, Jacob Peck was born about 1696 in Weurttemberg, Germany, and died 1801 in Staunton, VA.  He may have had a son, Jacob Peck Jr., who appraised David Hastings' estate.  There was a James Hill who was married in Augusta County on March 25, 1762, but unfortunately, brides were not named in those records.  It is not clear if he was the same James Hill who served as an appraiser for the deceased David Hastings.

There were many entries for Daniel Kidd, Jacob Peck, and James Hill in's database, Virginia Land, Marriage, and Probate Records:  1639-1850.  These are the entries which prove they lived in Staunton at the time of Daniel Hasten's death:  

Daniel Kidd, landowner, four lots in Staunton: 1/4 acre; 1/4 acre; 1/4 acre; 1/2 acre.  October 6, 1772, Augusta Co., VA.
Book date:  26-363

Daniel Kidd, Grantor, Lot 7 in Staunton and 30 acres of woodland.  Grantee:  Theobald, alias Devault, Bosang.
November 15, 1774, Augusta Co., VA.  Book date:  20-437

Jacob Peck, Grantor, Lot 25 in Staunton.  August 18, 1779, Augusta Co., VA.  Book date:  23-76

James Hill. Grantee, Lot 18 in Staunton, joining lot whereon Thomas Smith formerly lived.  April 23, 1779, Augusta Co., VA.  Book date:  23-95

Thanks to Beverly Neises for this research work.