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John and Alexander Dickey: Immigrants 1772 PDF Print E-mail Share
Written by Jennifer Nodwell   
Wednesday, 08 September 2010 05:12

At the Library of Congress, I was able to read a copy of Grover C. Dickey's book John and Alexander Dickey Immigrants 1772 which he self-published through Adams Press in Chicago in 1976. He is descendant from Alexander Dickey, and the book focuses mainly on Alexander's line of descent. I am pretty certain that my John Dickey ancestor is the John of his book, although, the wife and children he lists for John to not correlate to the wife and children of my John (yet). Still, it was fascinating to read the account of these brave immigrants from Antrim, Ireland to South Carolina, and more research will undoubtedly tie my John to his John (some day).

John Dickey, his wife, and adult children John, Alexander, and Jane sailed from Larne, County Antrim, Ireland, on the ship James and Mary on August 25, 1772. The ship arrived at Charleston, South Carolina, on October 18, 1772. Due to the discovery of small pox on the ship, passengers were quarantined on the ship and at Sullivan's Island. John, John (Jr.), Jane, and Alexander were recipients of Royal Grants of land in South Carolina. They received 100 acres each from King George. (At this time land grants were by royal decree as the War for Independence had not yet been fought and South Carolina was an English colony.)

This book indicates that John, Jr. had married a Jane (probably) Hood and had children John, Elizabeth (Betsy), Peggy, and James, while Alexander married Ann Wiseman and had children Wiseman, Joseph, and Ann. I don't imagine too many John Dickey, Seniors with children named John and Alexander immigrated to South Carolina from Antrim. I hope that I discover this Jane, wife of John, Junior, turns out to be a first wife heretofore unbeknownst to me and is my John.

The book has several good references for this voyage from Antrim to South Carolina. The following is quoted as having been an advertisement posted in the Belfast News Letter.

James and Mary: 200 tons; master, J. Workman; agents Jas. McVicker, John Moore, merchant. On July 29, hoped that passengers would be punctual and allow vessel to sail August 8. Finally sailed from Larne, August 25, 1772.

The Charleston newspaper The South Carolina Gazette, for October 22, 1772 had two articles confirming the arrival of the ship.

Timothy's Maritime List
October 18, 1772 - James and Mary, John Workman master, from Larne.

Charleston, October 22, 1772. Last Sunday upwards of 200 Irish settlers arrived here in the snow, James and Mary, Captain Workman, from Larne. Some other vessels with a greater number on board were soon to follow this.

These immigrants were bound by a common religious belief and had left Ireland on a total of 5 ships. The other four ships in the original group did not begin arriving in South Carolina until December, 1772. The five ships combined were led by Reverend William Martin whose story is related in Scotch-Irish Migration to South Carolina, 1772: Reverend William Martin And His Five Shiploads of Settlers by Jean Stephenson (Shenandoah Publishing House 1970). They were known as Covenanter Presbyterians. Reverend Martin settled in the general area of Abbeville, South Carolina (Rocky Creek in Chester County), and after his church was burned by the British in 1780, he took refuge in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. The background of the Rev. William Martin is in History of Kellswater Reformed Presbyterian Church: A Short History by Robert Buchanan. He was born the oldest son of David Martin of Londonderry. The Rev. Martin was the only Covenanter minister in counties Down and Antrim at the time. In 1760 he resided at Kellswater. He had oversight responsibility for societies at Cullybackey, Laymore, Cloughmills, and Dervock. He preached also in Londonderry and Donegal. The Presbytery was founded in 1743 and Kellswater became the center in 1760. I cannot help but wonder if this minister knew both my ancient Dickey family members as well as my husband's ancient Nodwells, also Presbyterian protestants from Londonderry, who were being born about the time this group left for South Carolina.

Both The South Carolina Gazette

Proclamation by Charles Greville Montagu, Governor

Whereas, the ship James and Mary, John Workman, Master, is arrived at the port of Charles Town from Ireland, with several passengers on board, now lying off Sullivan's Island, I therefore strictly forbid all persons whatsoever either from going on board the vessel called the James and Mary or near th said Island at the peril of being prosecuted according to the laws in that case made and provided, without my express orders and direction for so doing.

Given under my hand and Seal this 26th Day of October A.D. 1772

and a journal written by Alexander Chesney confirm the account of smallpox on board the vessel.

We were obliged to ride at quarantine for three weeks and eight days. We had a large house during the quarantine, allowed for the sick on Sullivan's Island, which was kept for the purpose of a hospital; one Robinson has a salary from the Government for living there. We went back and forth from the hospital to the ship for a change.

Some other passengers on this ship were: John Peddan, Joseph Lowry, Timothy McClintock, John Snody, Thomas Makee, William Anderson, Hugh Loggan, Nathan Brown, James Peddan, John Brown, William Simpson, William Boyd, William Eashler, John Rickey, David Thompson, Robert Wilson, John Parker, Robert Neile, John McClintock, James Hood, John Montgomery, John Caldwell, James Stinson, John Thompson, Peter Willey, Samuel Kerr, Alexander Brown, Thomas Madill, Robert Hadden, Robert Machesney, Charles Miller, Charles Dunlop, Hugh Mansoad, Robert Ross, and James Young.

It is, perhaps, interesting to note that John Dickey, Sr. spelled his name Dickey, Dickie, or Dicky from time to time, often within the same document using multiple spelling variants. I use the spelling common to his descendants: Dickey.


Last Updated on Wednesday, 08 September 2010 06:22