The Quest for Susannah,                               The Adventure Continues.....


After all these years researching our Wright Family, we are still struggling with the same obstacles.  As when we began, we still need to know.....                                           

                                          "Who were Joel Martin and Susannah Wright?"

                                  "Who were their parents, their siblings?"

                                  "Where did they come from?"


There have been many "speculations" as to Joel and Susannah Wright’s past. Researchers have "guessed" Joel might have been the son of William, James, Solomon or John and have also "assumed" Susannah was a Bates, Caudill, Bentley or Martin and given these "opinions" as fact.  

The fact remains that to this day no one has been able to unearth a record which can factually document their identity.  

No one has been able to show evidence that Joel was the son of William, James, Solomon or John, nor has anyone been able to prove Susannah's maiden name was Bates, Caudill, Bentley or Martin. 

We would be happy to learn the statements above are fact, but can not accept it unless it is documented. As researchers, we have all had tentative theories but none of us can identify Joel and Susannah's parents and siblings with certainty. Without that certainty we would be posting guesses that only serves to confuse other researchers. We can not stress strongly enough the damage this can do to research.

The fact remains, Joel and Susannah's ancestry is still unknown.

We know Joel and Susannah were first located on an 1804 tax list of Russell County, Virginia and the land area where they lived was near Lebanon. This record proved Joel and Susannah had established their household by 1804.  It is unfortunate but marriage and birth records for this period of Russell County history, which might have given Susannah’s maiden name, are not available. A search of marriage and other vital records in surrounding counties and states has not proved beneficial. 

Joel Wright died about 1834 and did not leave a will. We do not have the option of looking to census records for a place of birth since that statistic was not listed until the 1850 census. His children’s census reports gave their fathers place of birth but their accounts were not in agreement.               

In the 1850 census of Letcher County, Kentucky, Susannah, then widow of Joel Martin Wright, gave information that she was 65 years of age and born in the state of Virginia. 

There are no known records that place either Joel Martin Wright or his wife Susannah as living anywhere but Russell County, Virginia, Perry and Letcher County, Kentucky. 

We would greatly appreciate hearing from anyone who has the answers to these questions. 


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The material on this website is copyrighted © 2001 by Nancy Wright Bays, Patty May Brashear. 

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