Fretwell Family

Other Trees

As the extant records of Virginia have been searched for the Fretwell name, it is noted that only one other Fretwell is found between 1763 and 1786 in Virginia when William leaves Essex County and settles in Cumberland County where he writes his will. He is Thomas Freeman Fretwell and no family has been connected to this individual as yet. His death in 1770 tells us his children, if any, were born before that year.

William and Mary Fretwell had their children between 1730 and 1752. By 1763, the older ones are most likely beginning to marry and have families of their own.

Thus, when the probate begins for William's estate in 1788, we find eleven of his children have scattered around Virginia after 1763: John in Louisa County, Susanna in Prince Edward County, Mary in Buckingham County, William and Alexander in Albemarle County, and Thomas, Joseph, Nancy, James, Richard and Leonard in Cumberland County with their father and mother.

Yet, there are other Fretwells scattered around Virginia and adjacent states during the last quarter of the eighteenth and the beginning of the nineteenth centuries. They are the Other Fretwell Family Trees, some of whom are known to be born in England and some found in America, origins not known.

Born in England

Thomas Fretwell, b. ca1780, emigrated to Mercer Co., PA - with descendants

George Midgley Fretwell, b. 1791, emigrated to Baltimore Co., MD - with descendants

John Fretwell, b. 1802, emigrated to Henry Co., VA - with descendants

Joseph Fretwell, b. 1806, emigrated to Ohio Co., WV - no known family

John Fretwell, b. 1826, emigrated to St. Lawrence Co., NY in 1850 - no known family

John H. Fretwell, b. 1827, emigrated to Washington Co., PA in 1900 - no known family

_____ Fretwell & Sarah, b. ca1828, emigrated to Lenawee Co., MI - with descendants

John Fretwell, b. 1833, emigrated to Idaho Co., ID in 1880 - no known family

John Fretwell, b. 1837 and died 1909, Attleboro, Bristol co., Massachusetts -- with descendant

Edwin Fretwell, 1850 - 1902, emigrated to San Francisco, CA - no known family

John Raby Fretwell, b. 1851, emigrated to Iron Co., UT - with descendants

Orson Pratt Fretwell, b. 1854, emigrated to Iron Co., UT - with descendants

Charles Fretwell, b. 1870, emigrated to Boston, Massachusetts in 1913 - with descendants

Alexander Fretwell, b. 1871, emigrated to Brooklyn, New York in 1897. A year later, his wife and children joined him there

Walter Fretwell, b. 1873, emigrated to Lawrence, Massachusetts in 1903-04 - with descendants

George Fretwell, b. 1875, emigrated to Detroit, Michigan in 1910 - with descendants

Gertrude Fretwell, b. 1879, emigrated to Carroll County, Iowa by 1900 - with descendants

Ada Marion Fretwell, b. 1886, emigrated to Iowa by 1900, settled in Bremer County - with descendants (sister of Gertrude)


Thomas Fretwell, b. ca1780

Thomas Fretwell was born in England ca1780. He settled in Mercer County, Pennsylvania in 1830 with his wife, Hannah. They were the parents of eight known children: Hannah, Thomas, John, Mary, Maria, Ann, Adah and Eliza, all born in Blacktoft, Yorkshire, England. His son, Thomas moved west to Wisconsin and his son, John remained in Erie County, Pennsylvania. Thomas was a farmer and died before his wife, Hannah (d. 11 Feb 1861). More

George Midgley Fretwell, b. 1791

George Midgley Fretwell was born in England in 1791 and married first Elizabeth Roebuck in 1813 in Doncaster, Yorkshire, England. They were the parents of four known children: Jesse, John, Matilda and Roebuck. George was a farmer and settled in Baltimore County, Maryland. In 1853, George married second Margaret Lilley. They were the parents of four known children: Eliza, George M., Jessie and Ann. Their descendants continue to live in the Baltimore area. More

John Fretwell, b. ca1802

John Fretwell, born ca1802, married Elizabeth Burnett 20 May 1833 in Pittsylvania County, Virginia. They were the parents of four known children: Samuel, Kate, Malinda and George. In 1850, John worked as a blacksmith and resided in Henry County, Virginia. In 1860, Elizabeth was a widow and continued to reside in Henry County, Virginia as do their descendants to the present day. Note: Descendant Nancy Fretwell Thompson wrote in 1984: "....I have quite a few things about g-grandfather, Immigrant John William Fretwell (1812-1855)..." Descendant Sam Fretwell wrote in 1983: "The Fretwell family has resided in the Bassett, Virginia area of Henry County since the early 1800s,...descendants of John Fretwell, a teacher, who came from England..." More

_____ Fretwell and Sarah, b. ca1828

Sarah Fretwell was born in England in 1828. She emigrated to the United States in 1876 and it is not known whether her husband was with her. She was the mother of five children, three of whom are known: Thomas, John and George. She still lived with George, her son, in 1910 in Adrian, Lenawee County, Michigan. Thomas worked as a well digger and George was a carpenter in Adrian. John moved west to Thayer, Neosha County, Kansas. He was the mayor of Thayer in 1901 and 1902. His descendants are found today in Joplin and Kansas City, Missouri. One great-great grandson, Norman Elliott Fretwell, has volunteered his time for many years to the Boy Scouts of America and the Missouri Boys State. More

Edwin Fretwell, b. 1850 - d. 1902

Edwin Fretwell was born in England in1850. He emigrated to San Francisco, California where he worked as a bookkeeper with Thompson Bros. in 1873. He married Annie Livesey in 1875. They had no known children. Edwin became the president of the American Bank and Trust Company in the city. On a return visit to England, Edwin died there in 1902.

In his lifetime, Edwin Fretwell had a long association with Charlotte Crabtree, the American actress. After his death, his widow lived in San Rafael, CA and disputed "Lotta's" claims to Edwin's estate. The city of San Francisco accepted a gift from the popular entertainer in 1875: Lotta's Fountain. It survived the 1906 earthquake and still stands today in the financial district at the intersection of Market, Geary and Kearny Streets. Visit to see the fountain.

John Raby Fretwell, b. 1851

John Raby Fretwell was born in England in 1851. He emigrated to America in 1873 settling in Iron County, Utah. His death certificate names his father as William H. Fretwell and his mother as Jane Raby. John married first Olive Coombs in 1875. They were the parents of ten children. Those known children were Maryann, William, Sarah, Rosabell, Joyce and David. Some of their descendants settled in Bingham County, Idaho. John married second Lucille Fennemore. They were the parents of Mildred, Donald, George, Grant, Helen and Keith. Some of their descendants moved to Fresno and Menlo Park, California. More

Orson Pratt Fretwell, b. 1854 -

Orson Pratt Fretwell was born in England in 1854. He emigrated to America in 1873 settling in Iron County, Utah. His death certificate names his father as William H. Fretwell and his mother as Mary Ane Raleif. Orson married Sarah Ann Dutton in 1878. They were the parents of six known children: Kate, William, Thomas, John, Herbert and Arthur. A descendant resided in Menlo Park, California. More

Found in America

John (1738 - 1820) of Louisa Co., VA

          Muscow Fretwell (b. 1770 Goochland Co., VA - d. 1803 Allegany Co., Maryland)

                    William (b. ca1792-1797) More

                    John (b. ca 1795 -     ) in Albemarle Co., VA in 1820

No known parents

          Lemuel Fretwell (b. ca 1766) of Prince Edward County, VA

                    William Fretwell (b. ca1765-1775) of Waynesboro, Augusta County, VA

                              James T. (b. ca1805 - d. aft 1880, Augusta Co., VA) More"File not found" error corrected September 3, 2016

No known parents

          William Fretwell (b. ca1766 -     ) of Surry Co., NC in 1787 and 1789 paid personal taxes

          William Fretwell (b. ca 1774 -     ) of Salisbury District, Surry Co., NC in 1790 on federal census

          William Fretwell (b. ca 1779 -     ) of  Henry Co., VA in 1800 paid personal property taxes   

                    William A. (b. 1815 Rockingham Co., NC - d.1885, Caswell Co., NC) More

No known parents

         John Fretwell (b. ca1770-1780) of Pendleton Co., SC MoreUpdated September 3, 2016

                   Bry (1811-1882) of Oconee Co., SC More

No known parents

         James Fretwell (b. 1770-1780) of Augusta County, VA

                   Dabney (b. ca 1795 -     Augusta Co., VA) More

         No Known Parents

                   William, (b. ca 1780 - d. 1834, Albemarle Co., VA)

                   Richard and Elizabeth Fretwell (no record found)

                             Samuel Faris Moses Fretwell (b. ca1804) More

                   Samuel (b. ca 1790 - d.        ), administrator of William's estate

         No Known Parents

                   John of Ohio (b. ca 1795 - d. 1877, Franklin Co., Ohio) More

         No Known Parents

                   William Fretwell (b. ca 1795 -   ) not William Hiram Fretwell (corrected 5/22/2011)  More

                             Hugh ( b. 1838 - d. 1936)

                             Irvin (b. 1832 - d. 1911)

         No known parents

                   James (b. 1800 -     ) in Ohio Co., Virginia on 1840 federal census

                   James Barbour Fretwell (no record found)

                             James Barber Fretwell (b. 1831) of WV More


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Last Updated: September 3, 2016
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