Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Kaylors of Lincoln County N.C.

The Kaylors first arrived in Lincoln County in 1790 when records show that Heinrich or Henry Kaylor purchased a large tract of land on Clark's Creek. They came from Pennsylvania, part of the large wave of German immigrants who traveled down the Great Wagon Road and settled in the Piedmont region of North Carolina. At the time, George Washington was the President, and America still consisted of only 13 states. Heinrich Kaylor was accompanied by his wife, Catherine, and three of their children: George, Mary, and Catherine. They lived in the area of present day Conover N.C., now part of Catawba County. Not much is known about Heinrich Kaylor but his name is found on various Lincoln County documents from the first half of the decade. His signature was in heavy German script suggesting he was probably born in Germany. Heinrich Kaylor died in 1796 and was survived by his wife, Catherine.

His son, George Kaylor, was named the administrator of his father's estate.George Kaylor was born in Pennsylvania no later than 1765. He was a millwright and apparently someone of above average education as his handwriting was in well formed English script. He often signed his name as J George Kaylor and was either very active in public life or in land dealings as his name is found proving many deeds and wills. According to the Census, George Kaylor had many children, but only four of their names are known: George Jr., Henry, John and Joseph. The name of his wife is unknown and he may have been married more than once. George Kaylor apparently died in the late 1820's because his name didn't appear on the 1830 census or any other known records after 1828. He was most likely buried at the St. Peters Lutheran Church cemetery in Conover, North Carolina.

George Kaylor Jr., the oldest son, was born in Pennsylvania in 1790, the same year the family migrated to North Carolina. He was a farmer who lived most of his life in Lincoln County but eventually settled in nearby Iredell County with his wife, Catherine Wagner. Early Lutheran Church records show that George and Catherine were members of Sharon Lutheran Church in Iredell County. He was listed on the 1850 Census as George Kyler of Iredell County and is believed to have died in the early 1850's.

Henry Kaylor(1793-1862) was a millwright, like his father. He married Elizabeth Herman and they had ten children, including George Emmanuel Kaylor, pictured above, who was killed during the Civil War and David Kaylor, pictured below. During the war, George Kaylor wrote numerous letters to his family that provide an insight into what life was like in the early 1860's. Another son, Henry Frank Kaylor, migrated to Oregon sometime before the Civil War and thus extended the family legacy to the western region of the United States. Henry and Elizabeth attended St. Peter's Lutheran Church in Conover, N.C.

John Kaylor(1805-1880s) married a woman named Eve Bolick. He was a farmer who lived the first half of his life in Lincoln County before eventually settling in nearby Caldwell County. John and Eve Kaylor had ten children but lost three of their sons during the Civil War.

Joseph Kaylor(1808-1871) was a farmer who lived most of his adult life in nearby McDowell County. He married Nancy Crago and they had eight children. Both are buried at the Bethel Baptist Church cemetery in McDowell County, N.C.

Catharine Kaylor, daughter of Henry and Catherine, was born in Pennsylvania in 1785. Also known as Catharina and Katy, she worked as a spinster and lived most of her life in Lincoln County. She was referred to as "my beloved friend Katy Kaylor" in Elizabeth Urich's will and was left 25 dollars, a loom, and tacklings. Shortly before 1840, Catherine moved to Gilmer County, Georgia with others from Lincoln County. She is found on the 1850 Census living in Forsyth County, Georgia.

Mary Kaylor, daughter of Henry and Catherine, married William Herman of Lincoln County.

It remains a mystery as to when this family first arrived in America as do most of the details of their time in Pennsylvania. In modern times, the descendants of these early Kaylors are scattered throughout the nation, but the biggest majority of Kaylor descendants continue to live in the Piedmont region of North Carolina where the family first settled nearly 220 years ago.


If anyone has additional information about the early Kaylor history or old photos they're willing to share, please contact me at the address listed above.
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