what is now Nickelsville, VA. He was involved in many businesses and political areas including pump maker, Estillville (Gate City) water company (his father was involved in a water company for Washington Co., VA), Justice of the Peace, Commissioner of Revenue, farmer and probably had wagon teams hauling goods into the area. He was married to Jane Matney and they had 9 children. James married second Serena Jaynes and they had 9 children. From these 18 children descend a lot of family, some still located in the area and other descendants scattered across America. Local Scott County history books and numerous courthouse records document James Nickels history. Cousin Keith Nichols has published an excellent NICKELS family history in two large volumes. James business success was a trait inherited by his children and they carried on the tradition. In 1827 James sold some of his land in the area now known as Nickelsville, VA to his son William Nickels who in partnership with William McConnell formed Nickels & Company which lasted until McConnell left in 1834. The Company was then sold to James's son Walter who, along with other children of James including Great-Great-Great Grandfather Allen Nickels and Mathias Nickels. William moved to Pattonsville, VA and started another store. Walter later sold the store in Nickelsville and joined William. Later William and Walter had a disagreement causing a separation and lawsuits that dragged on for years, resulting in both store ledgers of Nickels & Company, Nickelsville, VA and Nickels, Nickels and Gibson, Pattonsville, VA stored in the Scott County Courthouse, Gate City, VA today. It is interesting family reading, as well as early records of the Nickelsville and Pattonsville areas.
We have Blacks intermarried into the Lairds, John of Derry, Pa married Agnes Black dau of Hugh Black and Isabella Laird dau of Mathew Laird married a James Black of Lancaster area in Pa any connections to these Blacks??
The following information from Annals of Buffalo Valley, 1755-1855, collated by John Blair Linn, copyright 1877.
pg 255, 1788, "Matthew Laird, who came to the valley this year, is the ancestor of a large generation. He came originally from Ireland, where his son James, was born." "He was a wagoner with General Braddocks army, and was in Colonel Dunbar's camp when the news came back of General Braddock's defeat, July 9, 1755." States to see his record in the Colonial Records, Vol VI, pg 482. "His daughter Isabella Black was 12 yr old when he came to White Deer." " Matthew Laird died August 1821."
pg 256, List his children as James, John, Isabella, married James Black, Moses, (father of R. H. Laird, Esquire) who died January, 1816, Margaret married John Blakeney, Matthew, who died in Tiffin, OH, Elizabeth, and Ann.
Moses married Jane Hayes and their son, Reverend Matthew, married a Miss Myers, and went out as missionary to Africa, dying there May 4, 1834. The other children were John, Mrs. McCalmont, Mrs. Joseph Milliken, of Clinton Co, --------------------- who married William Caldwell.
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