TRAVELS OF JESSE,
SON OF ABEL
Jesse was a toddler when he accompanied his
father on the long trip from Virginia to his new home in North
Carolina. As a young man he would continue his own migration, this
time heading south, mainly along the Northeast Cape Fear River.
Records suggest that he and his family lived at more than one
location near the river as it coursed down through Duplin
County. By 1788, we know that he had acquired land just across
the Duplin/New Hanover County line on the east side of the
river, just above the Holly Shelter area.
Records suggest that Jesse Croom, son of Abel,
very likely was the progenitor of most of the Croom families in
the area of New Hanover that would become Pender County in 1875.
Some records, however, indicate that Jesse's brother, Major Asa
Croom, was the father of at least one daughter who married about
1797 in the area where Jesse had settled. Major Asa Croom most
Place your mouse over a number to follow the travels of Jesse
Croom, son of Abel.
Records show that Abel Croom, who formerly
lived on a plantation along the James River in Goochland County,
Virginia, arrived in Craven County in 1741.We don't know for certain the path Abel Croom
took when he departed his Virginia farm along the James River
and went to North Carolina. Most likely he rafted down the James
and took a coastal water craft down to New Bern. From there he
poled his family and his belongings on a raft up the Neuse River
in a westerly direction and settled on the south side of the
river about six miles west of present day Kinston. As the crow
flies that might be some 40 miles. The wandering path of the
Neuse, however, was an arduous journey, at least half again as far.
In December 1741, Abel Croom bought 100 acres on
the west side of Whitley Creek, which is located on the south
side of the Neuse River in Craven County. That area later
briefly would be in Johnston County, then in 1759 in Dobbs
County and finally in 1791 in Lenoir County. In succeeding
years, Abel would expand his land holdings in that area.
Ultimately the lands would be apportioned to several of his sons
and daughters, including Jesse Croom. (Back to
As a young man, it appears that Jesse Croom
owned land in an area of Duplin County, not far from where he
was raised along Whitely Creek in Dobbs County. There remains
some uncertainty as to whether Jesse, son of Abel, left Duplin
County about 1778 and moved to Onslow County or whether another
Jesse, presumably a son of Jesse Croom of Wayne County, was the
one who purchased several tracts of land there.
(Back to map)
On the east side of the New River in northwest
Onslow County, NC, Jesse Croom purchased several hundred acres
beginning in early 1778. At this time, that Jesse appears to
this writer to be a son of Abel Croom. In 1786 a census was
taken in that county and a John Coomes (sic) was listed by the
enumerator as having two white males between the ages of 21 and
60 and three females of all ages in his household. I believe
this to be John Croom, son of Jesse. Inasmuch as John was 22
years of age at the time of this census, I have not confirmed
the identity of the other adult male. Was it his father, Jesse?
I could find no mention of Jesse in the 1786 Onslow census, or
in any other census during that period. Was the other adult male a relative
of John's? Perhaps Major Asa Croom?
(Back to map)
In March 1790, land records show that a Jesse
CROOM acquired 400a on the east side of the Northeast Cape
Fear River in New Hanover County, NC. In the first federal
census of that year, the household of Jesse Croom is listed
with 2 males age 16 and over, 3 males under 16 and 3 females
of all ages. We know that he was the son of Abel Croom.
(Back to map)
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