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William Cave of Montgomery Co, KY
Posted by: Larry Martin (ID *****3997) Date: August 13, 2007 at 22:23:30
  of 1277

William Cave was born about 1749 in Culpeper Co, VA and died 1839 in Montgomery Co, KY. He received a pension for services during the Rev War. In various court/pension records, we can determine that William lived in VA, NC, SC, and KY and had at least three brothers: Benjamin, Jonas, and John. William was in Ky by 1795 (daughter Nellie Cave married Joseph Hon 25 Sep 1795-Clark Co, KY marriage record). William eventually settled in Montgomery Co, KY (1st documented occurance was 1797 Montgomery Co, KY tax list) and owned land on Spencer Creek. A William Cave also sold land in Bourbon Co, KY in 1797...may be the same person. It can also be deduced through official records that he had the following children: Nellie Eleanor Cave (already mentioned); Mary (Polly) Cave married David Rice; William Cave, Jr. married Martha (Patsy) Martin; Lettie Cave married a Randall; John Cave married Polly Reely. From census records, it appears that William may have had 4 other daughters and 3 other sons. I have a lot of info on the Joseph Hon and Nellie Cave family. Here is what I hope others can answer for me:

1. In a lot of published literature, William is called William Harrison Cave, Judge Cave, and gentleman judge (1784-1787) in Harrodsburg, KY. What are the sources for these claims?

2. Who is the father of William Cave? I have seen several listed, most recently Joseph Cave who married a Mary Jenkins. I know that his uncle is a Jonas Jenkins (pension application); however, I do not have any proof that his parents were Joseph and Mary Jenkins Cave. For anyone who claims this lineage, could you please help me out and cite your sources?

3. Other than Nelly Cave, can anyone trace the other William Cave brothers and descendents? What happened to them? Where did they go? I do know that his brother Benjamin Cave moved to Ohio...that is well documented. John appears to have died in SC (Will supposedly recorded 1812 in Kershaw Co, SC). Jonas died 1808 in Montgomery Co, KY (will recorded in Montgomery Co, KY). As for children, I do know that William Cave, Jr married Martha Martin and that he died two years later (court papers). His widow, Martha, moved to Putnam Co, IN and settled the estate from there (employing a David Martin as her attorney). I eventually find Martha Cave and her two sons, Morton and William, in Nemaha Co, Kansas Territory. Morton was prominent in their local politics between 1855 and 1860. Martha, Morton, and William all show together in the 1860 census. Can anyone trace their descendants? Also, why did Martha Cave (with two young children), move to Putnam Co, IN? I can find no records of them living in that county (other than the court records where she settled the estate). Did she go with relatives? Her mother was widow Polly Martin. Did Polly go with her? Is David Martin related to Martha? Is there any connection to a William Martin who moved from the Montgomery/Bath Co area of Ky to Putnam Co, IN? Was he a relative of Martha's?

4. Does anyone know what happened to William's wife after he died? She does not show in the 1840 census. If still alive, must be living with one of the children. Also, did he marry once or twice? Some say that he had two wives. Some say that he had only one, Rachel. She is often shown with the last name of Martin. Does anyone have any proof? I only have one record of his wife and that is William's will. In his will he mentions his wife, Rachel.

5. Is William Cave actually buried in the Hon Cemetery (Powell Co, KY)? I know that there is a military marker. I've been there several times. However, that stone was erected in 1955 (over 155 years after he died). Per the application paperwork, there was no previous stone. I'm not saying that he is not buried there. Not my point. But, what was the proof that convinced somone to put up the marker in 1955? Bible record? Family tradition? Oral History? Family records? Does the marker actually mark his grave or was it primarily symbolic? Is his wife buried there as well? Why do I ask? The Caves were in Montgomery Co, KY between 1797-1839. I am sure there were several deaths in that time frame. William Cave lived on Spencer Creek for at least 24 years (bought the land in 1815). Where were these Caves buried? On Spencer Creek?

Again, I'm just looking for sources. Some of these claims have been out there for quite some time and some, if not all, may actually be true. However, lets try to dig through all the family trees and genealogies that have been published and try to find where the source materials reside. For example, if it is a court record, then let me know. If it is a "family traditon," but with no other known source, then let me know that as well. Just trying to sort it all out.

If I have stated anything that you know not to be true, please let me know and I'll correct it.

Thanks in advance for your help. You can either respond to this query or e-mail me at


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