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Francis and Elizabeth Dean Family

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William Dean Wallace is researching this family and has personally researched at the court house in Jefferson County and provided information for this page

Francis Dean was the founder of the town of Dandridge, in the future county of Jefferson, future state of Tennessee. He was the father of William Dean who married Abraham Woodward's daughter Alice. We have been unsuccessful in finding any additional information about the ancestors of Francis Dean and hope this Web Page will help us make contacts. Email Nadine on the About Us Page.

William Wallace found a reference that a Francis Dean was bound as an apprentice to John Parks, shoemaker, in 1749 in Essex County, Virginia. Francis Dean styled himself as "cordwainer" in his will (a leather worker and shoemaker.) This may be a clue as to the origins of the Dean family.

  Francis Dean
born unknown
died bet 12/15/1801 & 1/10/1802, Jefferson Co, Tn
  Elizabeth Unknown
born unknown
died after 1801

  Married: Unknown

John Dean married Jeleigh Fowler 5 Aug 1795
Robert Dean married Polly Chapman 8 Aug 1797
William Dean married Alice Woodward 20 Oct 1799
Elizabeth Dean married William
Brazelton 18 Jan 1803
Francis Dean
Sarah Dean married James Hornback 17 Jul 1804
Benjamin Dean born about 1790
Thomas Dean
Margaret (Peggy) Dean
Charity Dean
Note: some of the marriage dates may be license dates, All were Jefferson County, Tennessee

Will of Francis Dean

Since the family was not Quaker we do not have information on the birth dates of the children. It is only from the will of Francis Dean that we know the names of the children. We have not pursued census records to any great extent as the name Dean is fairly common and doing so could lead to mistakes.

Francis Dean wrote his will in Jefferson County, Tennessee, 15 December 1801. Abraham Woodward was a witness, no doubt protecting the interests of his daughter Alice Woodward Dean. The will follows:

"Know all men by these presents that I Francis Dean of Jefferson County and State of Tennessee, cordwainer, being sick, but in sound mind and memory and calling to mind the uncertainty of human life and knowing that it is appointed unto all men once to die, do make & ordain this my last will and testament in the manner and form following, viz.
First of all I recommend my soul to God that gave it and my body to be buried at the discretion of my relations and friends; and as touching such worldly Estate as it has pleased God to bless me with (after payment of my just debts and funeral charges, I dispose thereof in the following manner.
Imprimis, I give and bequeath unto Elizabeth my dearly beloved wife all my personal Estate for her own proper use during her lifetime, only Sarah, Elizabeth, Margaret & Charity, each one a cow when they marry. I likewise will that she have the use and benefit of the house we now lives in & other out houses and premises thereunto belonging during her life or while she remains my widow.
I will that the land I now own where we now lives, be equally divided between my two sons, viz, Benjamin & Thomas to be theirs at their Mother's death or marriage. As to my other lands at the courthouse on French Broad, my will is that it be sold by my Executors the best way they can.
I also will that my son Francis have one horse out of the price of said land with sixty or seventy dollars the remainder of said land to be equally divided between my other three sons to wit John, Robert & William and at my widows death.
I will that what is left of my personal estate be sold and equally divided between all my children to wit John, Robert, William, Francis, Benjamin, Thomas, Sarah, Elizabeth, Margaret & Charity.
I also constitute my two sons John & William to execute this my last will and testament. I do ratify and confirm this and no other to be my last will and testament.
In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 15 day of December in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and one.
Signed sealed published pronounced and declared by the said Francis Dean as his last will and testament in the presence of us
Abraham Woodward John Ellis
/s/Francis Dean (Seal)"

The probate for Francis is listed in Probate Book 3, page 35 but we have not obtained a copy. Some financial settlements of the estate of Francis Dean deceased, were made on January 10, 1802 by son William Dean. The will was proven in court the 3rd Monday in January, 1802 and William Dean was qualified as executor.

In April 1803 the court appointed William Dean Guardian for Benjamin Dean, Thomas Dean, Margaret Dean, and Charity Dean, minors, who entered into bond in the sum of two thousand dollars with Nehemiah Ellis for his security and for faithful performance therein. (Note: Nehemiah Ellis was married to Sarah Thornbrough.) In 1805, Benjamin, of age 15, came into court and chose John Dean his guardian, who entered into bond with Anthony Caldwell his security in the sum of one thousand dollars for his faithful performance therein. And the court also appointed the said John Dean Guardian for Peggy Dean, Charity Dean, and Thomas Dean, children of Francis Dean deceased. On 13 March 1810 the court appointed Adam Meek and Henry Thornburgh Esquires to settle with John Dean Guardian for the heirs of Francis Dean, deceased, which said commission filed a settlement made (This may be final settlement when all the heirs were of age?).

Deans to Dandridge

"Jefferson County, Tennessee, Families & History" states that the first county court was organized on 23 July 1792. In January 1793 the county court approved a committee to locate a seat of justice. Their final selection was fifty acres donated by Francis Dean. We assume this is the land mentioned in the will at the courthouse on the French Broad River as Dandridge was located on the river. The deed was proven and recorded the 3rd Monday in April 1806 "from Francis Dean to Commissioners of the Town of Dandridge for 50 acres of land." It is the second-oldest town in Tennessee and has the oldest, continuously occupied courthouse in the state (a second one built in 1847). This demonstrates how early these pioneers were in the state. Dandridge is the only town by this name in the United States. Following the building of homes, the first jail was built in 1793. There is nothing else in this book about the children of Francis Dean nor are there other marriage records or wills for them in Jefferson County, indicating they probably left the area.