Walter Clopton and Mary Jarratt

This post goes from 1687 to 1758, when the last record of him appears, but he lived past that year.

Here are the Clopton family generations, like links in a chain, at a glance:

William Clopton → WALTER → WilliamMary m. William PerrinRebecca m. Robert AndersonElizabeth Ann m. Champion WilbournAmonet WashingtonWilliam HarveyElla Washington (Rae) (our grandmother)


Walter Clopton was born about 1687, probably in York County, Virginia, and died in New Kent County, Virginia, after June 26, 1758, where church records show him still going strong. He married Mary Jarratt, daughter of Robert Jarratt, on September, 4, 1711, in St. Peter’s Parish, New Kent County. She was probably born around the same time as her husband. And so far no record exists to indicate when or where she died.

Only one church record (see below, dated 8 Oct. 1737) calls Walter “Col.” (Colonel), next to Maj. John Dandridge. Is this a mistake? Or is it an honorific because he was commissioned to levy the tithes? Or did he join the military and move up the ranks? I don’t think it was a mistake, but it’s only one record.

Walter descends from William, a “gateway ancestor.” This means that several generations back, William had royal ancestors, but he moved to the American colonies. There were hundreds of these gateways. William is ours.

Please see William Clopton and Our Royal Heritage for more information.

Walter’s mother Ann Booth descends from Dr. Robert Booth, and he is one of the original co-founders of Jamestowne.

Please see Robert Booth and Jamestowne Society for more information.

it seems that they remained in New Kent County all their lives, and its records were destroyed by fire in 1787 and during the Civil War, so we don’t know much about their land records or their probate. Pity.

Lucy Lane Erwin

She’s the dean of Clopton researchers, and here is her entry on Walter Clopton:

Erwin 140 Walter


Lucy Lane Erwin, the Ancestry of William Clopton of York County, Virginia (Rutland, Vermont: Tuttle, 1939), p. 140.

Other Sources

For a shortcut to only the Cloptons appearing in the Register, please click on Clopton Birth, Marriage, and Death Records of St. Peter’s Parish, New Kent County, Virginia.

Mary Jarratt Clopton:

Her father Robert Jarratt:

Clopton Chronicles

It’s hard to find a more thorough organization than this one. Here is their page about Walter Clopton:


In addition to that thorough link, here is a quick write up at the William and Mary Quarterly (vol. 10, no. 1) (slightly edited):

WALTER CLOPTON … married Mary Jarratt, sister of Rev. Devereux Jarratt, and daughter of Robert Jarratt (see Life of Devereux Jarratt), and had issue, Anne, born July 3, 1712; child born November 19, 1714; Walter, born March 24, 1720/21; Robert, born June 4, 1725; 21 Devereux, born August 30, 1727; Margaret, born September 9, 1729; Naomi, born January 11, 1735.

Here is another write up from a print source:

Walter Clopton, the third son of William and Ann Clopton, Mary Jarratt, of St. Peter’s Parish married on September 4, 1711. Their children were recorded in the Register of Births and Baptisms:

Anne born July 8, 1712

William born 19 Nov. 1714

Mary born August 9, 1716

Walter born 24 March 1720/21

Robert born Jan. 4, 1725

Devereux born August 30, 1727

Benjamin born ca. 1732

Norma born 11 June 1735

Walter [sic] born 13 February 1740

Source: Malcolm Hart Harris pp. 227-30.

Also see:


Walter Clopton was a prominent leader in church life and governance of St. Peter’s Parish, in New Kent County, often serving as the clerk, church warden, and vestryman. He was also a collector of titheables, that is, a tax.

Please see these links to the Vestry Book and do a ctrl-f name search with the keyword Clopton:

The pdf file of the Vestry Book may be easier to read; also do a ctrl-f name search with the keyword Clopton:

If either of those two links go dead, google search with these key words: text vestry st peter’s parish.

For the records of the Register of the parish, please click on either of these two links:

Do a ctrl-f search with the keyword Clopton

If either of those links go dead, do a google search with these key words: text register st peter’s parish

Sample Records of Church Leadership

Here are highlights of Walter Clopton’s involvement in St. Peter’s Church Parish leadership, with his brothers Robert and William making cameos:

29 Sep 1719

In an accounts list.

To Thomas Weaver for Jane Price, Walter Clopton etc. 275 – Elizabeth Harris 458

This is the first time that Walter Clopton appears in the records.

Same date

“Ordered that Walter Clopton deliver unto Rich’d Allen and Mr. William Clopton, church wardens, the servant man’s mare, which come out of Essex County and that the said church wardens detain the said mare until such time as the owners of her make satisfaction unto the parish for the sum of two hundred and seventy five pounds of tobacco, which was allowed the said Walter Clopton by the vestry for burying and other charges of Thomas Burdenwin or else to pay cash for the said 275 pounds of tobacco at twenty shillings p[er] hundred.”

This is the first time Walter and William appear in the same record. (And at least we know that a hundred pounds of tobacco is the equivalent to twenty shillings.)

20 July 1722

“Mr. Wm Macon and Mr. Walter Clopton having first taken the oaths according to Law were appointed Vestrymen of the said Parish, having taken the oaths in that case appointed.”

This is the first time that Walter is recorded as being appointed vestryman.

30 Sep 1723

Mr. Henry Collings, Minster

Maj. John Scott, Mr. George Poindexter, Mr. Thos. Massie, Mr. Eben. Adams, Mr. Wm Macon, Wm Clopton, Wm Wadell, Walter Clopton. Mr. John Parke, Mr. Thomas Butts, Ch. wardens

This is the first time that father and son appear together as vestrymen.

12 Apr 1726, Easter Sunday

Minister: Mr. John Lang

Vestryman: Mr. Eben’r Adams, Capt. Wm Macon, Mr. John Netherland, Mr. Wm. Clopton, Mr. Wm Waddill, Mr. Walter Clopton;

Church warden: Capt. Thos. Massie

But then on the same date, 12 Apr 1726, they appear together as church wardens.

And they are vestrymen together on 19 June 1726 and 24 June 1727; but on 13 June 1727 they appear in the same list as church wardens.

12 Apr 1726 (same date as above)

Mr. Charles Massie and Mr. Walter Clopton are ordered and appointed to view and number tobacco plants according to law the Long Bridge upon Chickahominy Swamp along the main road by Mr. Adams’s to the burnt mill and so down Black Cr. to the mouth thereof and so to the extent of the parish upwards.

Mr. Robert Clopton and Mr. David Pattison are ordered and appointed to view and number tobacco plants according to law from Mr. Thomas’s former store along the main road by Col. Scott’s and so to Alex’r Pattison’s. So to the extent of the parish downwards.

The same orders are repeated on 17 June 1725 and 19 June 1726

29 Sep 1726

In an accounts list:

To Rich’d Crump for work at the Church, Wm. Clopton, Jr. (sic) his acct. 172 ½ …… 372 ½

24 June 1727

At a vestry held, Mr. William Clopton and Mr. Walter Clopton are found in the same list of church wardens, and then on the same date their names appear together.

14 Oct 1727

Mr. David Mossom, Minister

Mr. Eben’r Adams, Mr. Thos. Butts, Mr. Wm Waddell, Capt. Wm Marston, Mr. Wm. Clopton, Mr. Walter Clopton, Vestrymen.

Capt. Wm. Macon and Mr. Wm. Browne, Church wardens.

“Ordered that Elizabeth Taylor be allowed 700 pounds of tobacco per annum for keeping Mary Hazzard.” It should be Godard, perhaps, not Hazzard (see below).

Signed by David Mossom, Eben’r Adams, Wm. Marston, Thos. Butts, Wm. Clopton, Wm. Waddill, Walt. Clopton, Vestrymen. Will Macon, W. Browne, Ch. wardens”

23 Apr. 1728

William Clopton is said to be getting old and cannot fulfill his duties as vestryman of St. Peter’s Parish in New Kent County:

Mr. Wm Clopton being very aged and not of ability to attend on vestries, declineth the office of a Vestryman” (Vestry Book of St Peter’s 150).

14 June 1728

Mr. Walter Clopton appears in a church warden list of names. Then on the same date Mr. Charles Massie and Mr. Walter Clopton are nominated and appointed to view and number tobacco plants (see 12 Apr 1726).

Mr. David Pattison & Mr. Robt. Clopton are also renominated and reappointed.

23 June 1729

The previous order about the viewers is repeated.

8 May 1731

Mr. Walter Clopton hath this day taken the oath of a Church warden.”

Then in many records afterwards, he is listed among the church wardens—too many to record here.

On the same date:

“Ordered that the church path from the Ridge Road through Thomas Davis’s land be added to Mr. Adams’s & Mr. Walter Clopton’s precincts, they being equally concern’d in keeping the said path in repairs and making a bridge & causeway over the branch and keeping the same in repair.”

29 Oct. 1732

In a list of accounts, Mr. Wm Clopton’s executors are mentioned (without naming them). This means he died before that date and that he left a will. However, the records of New Kent County were destroyed years later. The item in the list says:

“To Exe’rs of Mr. William Clopton for keeping Cha. Barker” (Vestry Book p. 163).

On the same day the record reads: Robt. Clopton hath agreed to keep Cha. Barker for 800 [pounds] of tobacco” (p. 164).

And on the same date, business carries on: “Ordered that Capt. Jos. Foster, Mr. Robt. Clopton & Mr. Rich’d Crump or any two of them do view the glebe and make their report to the next vestry of the sate and condition the houses & garden paling [sic] at present is in.”

On the same date: “Mr. Charles Massie is chosen Church Warden in the room [place] of Mr. Walter Clopton and taken the oath of a Church Warden.”

29 Sep 1736

Mr. Walter Clopton is empowered to collect from every titheable person in this Parish, provided the said Clopton enter into bond with security to the vestry for performance of the same, Mr. Walter Clopton has offered to give bond with his security’s, the Rev’d Mossom, Maj. Wm Macon & Capt. Jos. Foster, who are approved by the vestry for his performance of the collection & is to give bond accordingly.”

8 Oct 1737

Walter’s function as a “tithe” collector is repeated, as above.

But most interestingly, in an account list, on the same date, he is said to be Col. Walter Clopton, in the same line item as Maj. John Dandridge.

Is this a mistake? Is this an honorific for being a “tithe” collector? Or did he join the military and move up the ranks? I don’t think it was a mistake. We should take it as written, knowing, however, that Maj. Dandridge is referred to his rank in almost all his church records.

2 Oct 1738

Walter’s function as a “tithe” collector is repeated, as above, except the wardens have changed.

29 Sep 1739

Walter’s function as a “tithe” collector is repeated, as above, except the wardens have changed.

6 Oct 1739

In an accounts list, Mr. Walter Clopton is paid 922 pounds of tobacco for keeping “delinquents,” 21. He is also approved to collect the tithe and give bond.

29 Sep 1740

“Col. Daniel Parke Custis and Mr. Walter Clopton be chosen church wardens for the ensuing year and were accordingly sworn.”

Same date

Mr. Wm. Clopton is empowered to collect from every titheable person in this parish provided the said Clopton enter into bond with security to the vestry for the performance of the same. Mr. Wm. Clopton has offered to give bond with his securities, Mr. Walter Clopton and Mr. David Pattison, who are approved by the vestry for his performance of the collection & give his bond accordingly.”

So two brothers work together.

29 Sep 1741

In an accounts list:

To Mr. Wm Clopton Acct. for delinquents

To Mr. Walter Clopton for keeping a bastard child of Mary Ashberry

Are they two brothers or father and son?

3 June 1742

“… Mr. Walter Clopton, parish collector, be empowered to sell all the tobacco which was levied upon the several titheables of this parish at the vestry held Sept’r the 19th, 1741, for ready money at July court ensuing, as also the tobacco arising by fines.”

29 Sept 1742

Mr. Walter Clopton is again empowered to collect the levies.

On the same date: “That Charles Barker be allowed 600 lbs. for the ensuing year.”

24 Sep 1743

Mr. Clopton appears in an account list for delinquents …… 665

How do we know this is Walter and not one of his brothers. Walter is everywhere in the church records, while his brothers don’t appear that often.

24 Sep 1743

In an account list:

To Charles Barker for his support …… 400

28 Sep 1745

“That Mr. Clopton be empowered to agree for a woman to attend to Eliz’th Lewis.”

3 Oct 1747

To Robert Clopton for making a coffin for Geo. Mason 10 pounds …… 90

26 Nov 1750

This is probably Walter’s wife Mary. in an account list:

To Mary Clopton for keeping Jozard [Godard] …… 300

24 Aug 1751

“Ordered that all the lands in this parish be continued and divided into twenty precincts, the same that have been hitherto accustomed to be processioned and that the persons whose names are under specified in each precinct respectively, do processions the same and return to the vestry an account of the proceedings; that is to say, in precinct”:

No. 1 John Roper and Henry Atkinson

No. 2. George Poindexter and William Poindexter

No. 3 William Perkins and Jonathan Patteson

No. 4 Walter Clopton and Robert Jarratt

No. 5 Jesse Scott and George Waddill

No. 6 Anthony Cole and John Waddill

No. 7. William Macon and Martin Hewlet

No. 8 Richard Crump and William Clopton

No. 9 John Parke and Edward Bacon

No. 10 Charles Mannin and Joseph Ellison

No. 11 Thomas Martin and Devereux Clopton


For an analysis of these names, click on William Clopton and Cassandra Crump, and scroll down.

This order is repeated 13 Sep 1755, though the precinct numbers have changed. The right Clopton names and their in-laws have not changed.

30 Sep 1751

This is probably Walter’s wife:

In an account list Mary Clopton is given 600 pounds of tobacco for keeping Mary Gozard (sic).

20 Nov 1752

Mary Clopton is in an account list receiving 600 pounds of tobacco for keeping Mary Gozard (sic)

On 29 Sep 1753, 29 Sep 1755, 29 Sep 1757, 22 Nov 1758, the above account is repeated.

26 June 1758

Mr. Walter Clopton is named in a list of vestrymen, as if he’s going strong.

The vestry record ends.

For earlier vestry records, please click on this onsite post:

William Clopton and Ann Booth


The timeframe is 1740.

Peter's Reg 502 signature

In the above image, his signature appears first.

Peter's Reg 502-3 signature

Walter Clopton is third in the second column, and W. Clopton is third in the first column. It can only be William. Is he Walter’s son (our direct line) or his brother?


4 Oct 1734

Walter Clopton of St. Peter’s Parish, New Kent Co., Gent., to James Hill of same parish and Co. £20 sterling; 20 acres on the south side of the south Anna at the mouth of Horseshoe Neck, part of 400 acres that was granted to John Syme, Gent., by patent 17 Aug. 1725 and by said Syme made over to said Clopton by deed acknowledged in Court of Hanover 6 Jan 1726. Mary, wife of said Clopton, relinquished her dower rights. Wit: J. Markland, Bartlett Anderson; 4 Oct 1734, acknowledged by Walter Clopton, gent. (pp. 133-135)

Source: Rosalie Edith Davis, Hanover County, Virginia Court Records, 1733-1735: Deeds, Wills and Inventories (Manchester, Missouri, 1979), p. 38.


Malcolm Hart Harris, Old New Kent County Some Account of the Planters, Plantations and Places in New Kent County, vol. 1, (West Point, Virginia, 1971).

The Vestry Book of St. Peter’s: New Kent County, Va. from 1682-1758.

The William and Mary Quarterly, Vol. 5, no. 2 (Oct. 1896) pp. 81-80

The William and Mary Quarterly, Vol. 10, No. 1 (July, 1901), pp. 54-56

The William and Mary Quarterly, Vol. 11, No. 1 (Jul., 1902), pp. 67-73

The William and Mary Quarterly, Vol. 17, No. 4 (Apr., 1909), pp. 294-296

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