Pottinger Family Papers, 1631-1942

Held by The Filson Historical Society

Creator:  Pottinger family

Title:  Papers, 1631-1942 (bulk: 1900-1942)

Rights: For information regarding literary and copyright interest for these papers, contact the Curator of Special Collections.

Size of Collection:  1 cu. ft.

Location Number:  Mss. A P831

Scope and Content Note

Collection consists of genealogical information on Pottinger and related families, collected by Samuel Forrest Pottinger from about 1900 to 1942. Pottinger bound his research into 16 volumes and a scrapbook, entitled, “The Pottenger Papers: John Pottenger, Gentleman, of the Province of Maryland, and some of his Descendants.”  The content of the bound volumes was removed into folders for preservation.

The first three files consist of typescript, but as the volumes progress, they include more notes, correspondence, and transcribed documents such as wills, inventories of estate, lawsuits, and land papers.  Pottinger developed a form to send out to different members of the Pottinger family to complete their history; he also worked with archives in England and had a private researcher, George Sherwood, working for him in London.

The records include some originals, such as letters and receipts, which date back to the late eighteenth century, but mostly consist of transcripts and twentieth century correspondence.  Pottinger corresponded with many family members and distant cousins in his search for genealogical information, not only on the Pottinger family, but many of the other family names related to descendents of John Pottenger. (A note on the spelling; Pottinger ancestors in England and early in the United States spelled the name “Pottenger;” the spelling Pottinger seems to have come into vogue in the nineteenth century.) Allied families include: Gray, Withrow, Gilkey, Caldwell, Logan, Jameson, Rice, Bohannon, Pulliam, Stuart, Beall, Willett, Griffith, Phelps, Neall, Magruder, Masterson, Evans, and others.  Please see the folder listing for specific information about content.

 Separation Note:  Photographs of Anne Pottinger Withrow (1773-1853), Jane Withrow (1795-1872), and Lucinda Jameson Pottinger (1791-1867) were transferred to the Filson’s Photograph Collection, as was a tintype photograph of Emeline Pottinger Blincoe (1818-1901).


Biographical Note

Samuel Forrest Pottinger created a genealogical collection for Pottinger and related families. Pottinger was a collector of revenue for the Treasury Department in Washington, D.C., and lived in Maryland.  His research into the Pottinger genealogy begins with a John Pottenger of Berkshire, England, who immigrated to Maryland in 1685.  Members of the family, notably Captain Samuel Pottenger, began to move into Kentucky in the 1770s., establishing a station on Pottenger’s Creek in Nelson County.


Folder List

[The Pottinger Family papers were originally bound into volumes, but were disbound for preservation and ease of use.  Each folder within the collection constitutes what was a volume.]

Folder 1 (Volume 1): The Pottenger Papers, by Samuel Forrest Pottinger – Table of Contents, Chapters 1 – 18. These chapters discuss the origin of the Pottinger name and the earliest family members to come to the United States from England. [Please note: although the table of contents lists chapters up to 54, the collection only contains Chapters 1 through 52.]

Folder 2 (Volume 2): The Pottenger Papers, by Samuel Forrest Pottinger – Chapters 19 – 26. These chapters discuss the early Kentucky Pottingers and Nelson County, Kentucky settlement of the family.

Folder 3 (Volume 3): The Pottenger Papers, by Samuel Forrest Pottinger – Chapter 26 continued. This file contains additional notes and copies of sources, as well as many handwritten notes on Pottenger genealogy.

Folder 4 (Volume 4): The Pottenger Papers, by Samuel Forrest Pottinger – Chapters 27 – 52. This file includes more notes and copies of sources, as well as genealogical correspondence including an original letter dated 3 April 1906 from Robert Burns Pottinger describing his career in the Confederate Army during the Civil War; he was originally with the 1st Kentucky Infantry in Virginia and then with John B. Castleman’s Company C. An original 3 February 1787 letter from Caleb and Rebecca Worley to Mr. Malcolm Allen described the activities of their son William who served with George Rogers Clark at the Wabash and other family news.

Folder 5 (Volume 5): Genealogy of the Gray, Withrow, Gilkey, Caldwell and Logan families. Correspondence to Pottinger dealing with these families and copies of documentation such as wills.

Folder 6 (Volume 6): Genealogy of the Jameson, Rice, Bohannon, Pulliam, R. Stuart families. Includes correspondence dealing with the genealogy of these families and some copies of documentation.

Folder 7 (Volume 7): Genealogical information on the Willett, Bland, Simmons, Price and Graft families. Includes mostly genealogical correspondence between family members and some copies of sources.

Folder 8 (Volume 8): The Minerva P. Jennings File – Genealogy of Beall, Willett and Griffith Families. File composed of notes and letters Pottinger received from Jennings.

Folder 9 (Volume 9): File includes information on the genealogy of Pottinger (Sir Henry Pottinger of Ireland, Pottinger’s Station, Walnut Hill, and Pottinger’s Creek), Neall and Magruder families, mostly replies from family members providing genealogical information, but does include some copies of original records.

Folder 10 (Volume 10): “The Pottinger in Foreign Countries” File includes copies of wills from England and correspondence about Canadian Pottingers, as well as some information on the Maryland Pottingers.

Folder 11 (Volume 11): Information on specific Pottinger family members: Sarah Pottenger Isaac, Mary Holmes, John Pottenger, Jr., Samuel Pottenger, Rachel Purnell, Robt. Pottinger, Rachel Pottenger Purnell, Jemima Pottenger, William Pottenger, Valina Pottenger Wade, John Pottenger, Jane Gray, Dennis Pottenger, and more.  Genealogy papers, mostly correspondence to Pottinger, but some copies of original documents including a 4 April 1828 letter from Robert Pottinger to John B. Withrow and photographs of Anne Pottinger Withrow (1773-1853) and Jane Withrow (1795-1872).

Folder 12 (Volume 12): File includes information on a lawsuit dated 1803 (Captain Samuel Pottenger vs. Andrew Beall) dealing with land on Pottinger Creek, Nelson County, along with genealogical information on Elizabeth Pottenger Philips, John Pottinger, Samuel Pottinger, Jr., Meteorie Shower, Jodie Pottinger Doway’s bible, and Benedict Spalding.  Records including copies of wills and a photograph (transferred to photographic collection) of Lucinda Jameson Pottinger (1791-1867), photocopies of images of Robert Spalding (1822-1895) and Samuel Pottenger Spalding (1825-1906) and several other photocopies of photographs.

Folder 13 (Volume 13): File contains information on Capt. Samuel Pottinger’s (1754-1831) children. The information includes some copies of original sources, two pages from an original nineteenth century family bible, along with an image of Emeline Pottinger Blincoe (1818-1901) and two of the Pottenger slaves named Lewis, with their grandchildren in Nelson County, Kentucky.  Records include information on Thomas J. Pottinger’s slaves.

Folder 14 (Volume 14): File includes information on the genealogies of the Willett family, Archibald Pottenger, Masterson family, and Evans family, and detailed data on stations and settlements in Nelson County, Kentucky. The records include an 1841 copy of Griffith Willett’s will.

Folder 15 (Volume 15): File includes information on the genealogy of the Lewis family, such as  transcripts of letters from the 1819 settlement of an estate in Fairfax County, Virginia. Also includes materials on Remey and Purdy family marriages in Nelson County, Kentucky; Butler family, Masterson family, Miller Family.  Specifically sectioned off are letters from Harry Clark in Cannelton, Indiana, and G. W. Hunter, of Fairfax County, Virginia, regarding Lewis ancestry.

Folder 16 (Volume 16): Genealogy of the Huston Family, including transcripts of original documents and newspapers clippings; also includes material on Ferguson, Summers, and Weathers.

Item 17 Scrapbook: Remey family genealogy (including letters from Admiral G. C. Remey); Lewis family genealogy, Ferguson and Summers, as well as Grigsby family genealogy. Records include an 1825 receipt from John Rowan.


Subject Headings

Beall family – Genealogy.

Bland family – Genealogy.

Caldwell family – Genealogy.

Clark, George Rogers, 1752-1818.

Confederate States of America. Army. Kentucky Cavalry Regiment, 2nd.

Confederate States of America. Army. Kentucky Infantry Regiment, 1st.

Evans family – Genealogy.


Gray family – Genealogy.

Griffith family – Genealogy.

Houston family – Genealogy.

Indians of North America – Wars – 1750-1815.

Jameson family – Genealogy.

Lewis family – Genealogy.

Logan family – Genealogy.

Magruder family – Genealogy.

Masterson family – Genealogy.

Neal family – Genealogy.

Nelson County (Ky.) – History.

Pottinger, Robert Burns.

Pottinger, Samuel Forrest, 1868-1956.

Pulliam family – Genealogy.

Price family – Genealogy.

Ramey family – Genealogy.

Remey, George Collier, 1841-1928.

Rice family – Genealogy.

Rowan, John, 1773-1843.

Simmons family – Genealogy.

Willett family – Genealogy.