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Preston family (Montgomery County, Va.)

 Family

Biographical Note (William and Susanna Smith Preston)

William and Susanna Smith Preston

Smithfield Plantation is the historic home of the Preston family, one of the founding families of Blacksburg and Montgomery County, Virginia. It was built by William Preston (1729-1783), who emigrated from northern Ireland with his family in 1737. He married Susanna Smith in 1761 and settled at Greenfield in Botetourt County in 1769. Preston established himself as a leader in the Virginia frontier by serving in the militia in the French and Indian and Revolutionary wars, in the House of Burgesses representing Augusta County from 1766 to 1768 and Botetourt County in 1769, and as County Lieutenant of Fincastle and Montgomery. He was appointed surveyor of Fincastle County in 1772 and moved his family to that area. He built Smithfield, named in honor of his wife, in 1773. Smithfield was the birthplace and home of three Virginia governors, including James Patton Preston (son of William), and John Buchanan Floyd and John Floyd, Jr. (grandsons of William).

Biographical Note (John Preston)

John Preston

John Preston, eldest son of William and Susanna (Smith) Preston, was born in 1764 at "Greenfield" in Botetourt County, Virginia. He periodically served in the Virginia militia throughout his lifetime. Preston was elected a member of the Virginia House of Delegates, representing Botetourt County in 1783, as well as Montgomery County in 1791 and again in 1803-1804. He served as a member of the Virginia Senate from 1792- 1799.

In 1792, Preston was named as a trustee in the act that established Christiansburg, Virginia in 1792, and served as a clerk of its first Board of Trustees. In 1798 he served as a trustee in the act that established Blacksburg, Virginia. In 1795, Preston became a Lieutenant Colonel, commanding the Third Regiment of Artillery. In 1799, he was elected Brigadier General, and given command of the brigade for Wythe, Montgomery, and Monroe Counties.

Later in 1810, Preston was appointed by the Virginia General Assembly to be the Treasurer of Virginia, serving until 1819. An audit of the treasurer's books found that Preston's accounts were in arrears, and a judgement was issued against Preston for 87 thousand dollars. To meet the obligation, Preston transferred a number of properties to trustees, who were to oversee their sale and the payment of funds into the treasury.

Preston married Mary Radford in 1798, and after her death in 1810, married Eliza Ann Carrington Mayo in 1811. He had seven children with his first wife and one with his second. When not on active military duty, Preston resided at "Smithfield" with his mother until his marriage, after which he lived at "Horseshoe". He died at Greenfield in 1827.

Historical Note (Smithfield Plantation)

Smithfield Plantation is the historic home of the Preston family, one of the founding families of Blacksburg and Montgomery County, Virginia. It was built by William Preston (1729-83), who emigrated from northern Ireland with his family in 1737. He married Susanna Smith in 1761 and settled at Greenfield in Botetourt County in 1769. Preston established himself as a leader in the Virginia frontier by serving in the militia in the French and Indian and Revolutionary wars, in the House of Burgesses representing Augusta County from 1766 to 1768 and Botetourt County in 1769, and as County Lieutenant of Fincastle and Montgomery. He was appointed surveyor of Fincastle County in 1772 and moved his family to that area. He built Smithfield, named in honor of his wife, in 1773. Smithfield was the birthplace and home of three Virginia governors, including James Patton Preston (son of William), and John Buchanan Floyd and John Floyd, Jr. (grandsons of William).

Smithfield Plantation remained in the family for generations and is currently maintained by the Montgomery County branch of the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities. Greenfield was a home in Botetourt County where William and Susanna Smith Preston resided in the 1760s.

Found in 13 Collections and/or Records:

Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities, Montgomery County Branch Papers

 Collection
Identifier: Ms-1962-001
Abstract

The records largely document the recent history of Smithfield Plantation, ancestral home of the Preston family, focusing particularly on its restoration beginning in 1962. While much of the renovation occurred in the 1960s, many of the records detail other renovation projects done in the 1970s and 1980s. The collection also includes historical and other related documents dating from before the original Preston family's residence at Smithfield.

Dates: 1754 - 1996; Majority of material found within 1958 - 1983

Caperton Family Papers

 Collection — Folder: 1
Identifier: Ms-1991-034
Scope and Contents Collection consists of transcripts of letters written by Mary Elizabeth Henderson Caperton of Nelson County, Virginia, to her husband George Henry Caperton, a soldier in the 1st Virginia Regiment of Mounted Volunteers (also known as the 30th Virginia Volunteers Mounted) in the Civil War. Mary Caperton wrote most of the letters from White Thorn, in Blacksburg, Virginia, while staying with Sarah Ann Caperton Preston, her husband's sister, while her husband served in the Confederate Army. She...
Dates: 1861 - 1862

Anna Whitehead Kenney Papers

 Collection
Identifier: Ms-1991-022
Abstract

The Anna Whitehead Kenney Papers contains a collection of biographical information about local families compiled by Kenney during her time as a curator at Smithfield Plantation.

Dates: 1965 - 1972

List of quit rents of the Middle District of Augusta

 Digital Record
Identifier: Ms1985-020_quitrents

Dorothy McCombs Collection,

 Collection
Identifier: Ms-1995-006
Abstract

The collection contains personal research notes, subject files, and writings; materials relating to the Virginia Tech University Libraries; course notes; dissertation research; work on textiles and arts & crafts history; genealogy notes; brochures on historic sites around Virginia; and maps collected by Dorothy McCombs. Materials date from about 1970-1989.

Dates: 1970 - 1989

Rudolph Dixon Michael Papers

 Collection
Identifier: Ms-1960-005
Abstract

This collection contains the papers of Virginia Tech alumnus and agricultural information editor.It contains correspondence and notes relating to the histories Blacksburg, the Preston family, and Smithfield Plantation (including maps of the grounds and the cemetery). It also contains a few campus photographs and printed materials related to Virginia Tech.

Dates: 1925 - 1984

Preston Family (Alice Preston Moore Collection) Papers,

 Collection
Identifier: Ms-1962-004
Abstract

The collection consists of family papers, receipts, correspondence, and original and photocopied materials relating to the Preston family, primarily William and Susanna Smith Preston, John Preston, and William Ballard Preston, dating from the 1740s to the 1880s. Other materials include 19th and 20th century genealogy research on the Prestons.

Dates: 1749-1882, n.d.

Preston Family (Charles Peale Didier Collection) Papers

 Collection
Identifier: Ms-1985-020
Abstract

The Didier Collection of Preston Family Papers includes papers of James Patton, Patton's grandson William Preston, and Preston's eldest son, John Preston, all of Montgomery County, Virginia. The papers consist of business and legal documents, surveys, and correspondence.

Dates: 1747 - 1897