Marlboro County, SC
Biographies - Peter BOWYER

 
 
 

PETER BOWYER - It is estimated that Peter Bowyer was born about 1756. At this time it is not known if he was born in South Carolina or migrated there. Peter is enumerated in the country's first census (1790), but this census does not give information about place of birth, it only indicates that Peter was over sixteen years of age and single.

Peter is identified in a property conveyance record dated 1789 - the purchase of two hundred acres of land along Crooked Creek in Marlborough District, South Carolina from John Terrell.

Assuming that he married before his children were born, he probably married Ann [--?--] later in 1790; possibly in present day Marlboro County.

Peter and Ann's known children include:

Ann Bowyer was born between 1790 - 1800 probably in present day Marlboro County, South Carolina. She died about 22 August 1820 probably in present day Marlboro County, South Carolina. It is unknown where Ann is buried.

Elizabeth Bowyer was born between 1790 - 1800 probably in present day Marlboro County, South Carolina.

Mary Bowyer was born between 1790 - 1800 probably in present day Marlboro County, South Carolina.

John W. Bowyer was born about 1795 probably in present day Marlboro County, South Carolina. John died before 28 October 1842 in Marlboro County, South Carolina.

We get a few clues about Peter from conveyance records (deeds) and court records. A conveyance of property from Peter to Robert Purnell in 1799 list Peter as being a 'planter.' Planters were not small independent farmers; instead, they had sufficient property to require the need of additional hands to cultivate. This property allowed, 'planters' of the area, a certain financial and political status.

Peter contributed (as he and others were expected) to the community by serving the Court of Pleas in September 1799; on their prospective 'petit' jury list. The court notes do not indicate if Peter actually served on a jury.

Peter died about January 1802 in Marlboro County. He left a wife and four young children. His estate records are wonderfully long and give valuable clues into their names and lives. There is no clue as why Peter died but he left an estate that was capable of taking care of his family. Profits from the crops and 'hiring out' of three slaves: Lucy, Hannah, and Jim seem to have supported Ann and their four children quite nicely. The estate records are peppered with expenses of teachers, tutors, and clothing.

About two years after Peter's death, Ann married William Fields, the estate's administrator, on 4 March 1804.

Peter's name was perpetuated for the next several generations. It is unknown where Peter Bowyer is buried.

Submitted by Mary Scrudder, 2005.

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