Early Colonial Settlers of Southern Maryland and Virginia's Northern Neck Counties

Benjamin Gaines Botts

Male 1776 - 1811  (35 years)


Personal Information    |    Notes    |    Sources    |    All    |    PDF

  • Name Benjamin Gaines Botts  [1
    Born 29 Apr 1776  Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Died 26 Dec 1811  Richmond Theater Fire, Richmond, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I026833  Tree1
    Last Modified 25 Mar 2020 

    Father Joshua Botts,   b. 24 Jul 1751, Overwharton Parish, Stafford County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 5 Mar 1781, Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia - Probate Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 29 years) 
    Mother Frances Lorena Gaines,   b. 2 Jan 1755, Culpeper County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 19 Jan 1818, Culpeper County, Virginia - Probate Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 63 years) 
    Married Abt 1772  Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID F16419  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Jane Tyler,   b. 1782, Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 26 Dec 1811, Richmond Theater Fire, Richmond, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 29 years) 
    Married Abt 1798  Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
     1. Alexander Lithgow Botts,   b. 29 May 1799, Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 17 May 1860, Washington, District of Columbia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 60 years)
     2. Thomas Hutchinson Botts,   b. 1 Dec 1800, Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1854, Fredericksburg, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 53 years)
     3. John Minor Botts,   b. 16 Sep 1802, Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 7 Jan 1869, Richmond, Henrico, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 66 years)
     4. Joshua Botts,   b. 2 May 1804, Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Bef 1 May 1805, Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age < 0 years)
     5. Jane Botts,   b. 6 Apr 1806, Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 6 Apr 1806, Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 0 years)
     6. Charles Tyler Botts,   b. 6 Mar 1809, Dumfries, Prince William County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 4 Oct 1884, San Francisco, California Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 75 years)
    Last Modified 25 Mar 2020 
    Family ID F16425  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 

    • The Botts Weems House in Dumfries, Virginia

      The 200-year old museum is named after Mason Locke Weems and th e man to whom he sold the house in 1802, Benjamin Botts.

      Parson Weems briefly lived in the now-restored building and use d it as a bookstore. Reportedly he played the devil's instrumen t, the fiddle, on the porch to attract customers from the majo r highway leading to the port of Dumfries. Weems popularized th e life of President Washington, crafting the curious anecdotes a bout Washington as a youth chopping down the cherry tree ("I can not tell a lie") and throwing a rock across the Rappahannock. T he stories might reflect the parson's imagination and a keen sen se of what would sell books, rather than accurate history - bu t they helped make George Washington a national hero for all tim e.

      It was the biggest selling book in America, along with the Hol y Bible, and was in continuous publication from 1800-1927.

      Benjamin Botts was the defense attorney in 1807 for Aaron Burr . Burr was accused of treason for conspiring with the Spanish t o split the western settlements (across the Allegheny Mountains ) from the United States. Botts was successful and Burr was no t convicted. This satisfied the trial judge, Chief Justice Joh n Marshall, but disappointed President Thomas Jefferson - unde r whom Aaron Burr had served as Vice-President from 1801-1805 . Benjamin Botts and his wife Jane were killed along with the G overnor of Virginia and other prominant state leaders, in a thea ter fire in Richmond, Virginia in 1811. (The Church built ove r the fire site still stands, as does the basement crypt)

      Please note that the greater family of George Washington has som e ties to Botts. Source: David Botts
      They first lived in Fredericksburg, Virginia. then moved to Rich mond where he practiced law. He was one of the first lawyers t o defend AAron Burr who was t ried for treason against the US . Benjamin, his wife and a niece were burned to death in the R ichmond Theatre Fire of Dec 28, 1811. 65 persons died among the m the Governor of Virginia. The monumental church was erected o n the ru ins of the site and the charred remains were deposite d in the vestibule of t he church, where a marble shaft has th e names of those who perished.
      ===
      RICHMOND, 11th Nov., 1810.
      http://docsouth.unc.edu/neh/mcpherson/mcpherson.html

      William W. Hening, Payton Drew, Charles Blagrove, has not had occasion to employ in his service the above named Christopher McPherson, but has known him for several years, and believes him to deserve the reputation and character herein stated.

      William DABNEY, Samuel Greenhow, James D. McCaw, Robert POLLARD, George PICKETT, sr., Edmund RANDOLPH, George Fisher, H. Dance, John D. Blair, as to his good behavior, the rest he believes from report.

      John Wickham, Thomas MARSHALL, Benjamin BOTTS, William Wirt, John Warden, William Forester, J. B. Dandridge can confidently testify as to the extraordinary industry and fidelity of Christopher McPherson, having known him first in the employment of the late most worthy clerk of the Chancery Court, and there been an eye witness of his labors, day and night, and last in the late office of the Supervisor for Virginia, where he received the enormous wages, of from 23 shillings to four dollars per diem, which was thought to be judiciously paid by the best officers. C. McP. at one time, accomplished in about three days, a piece of work assigned by the clerk of the C. C. for two weeks' labor; this that officer often told with astonishment. J. B. D., William Robertson, William Dandridge, William Nekervis, Thomas Norvel, Miles Selden, has been acquainted with Christopher McPherson, for twenty years, and coincides in opinion with the above subscribers.

  • Sources 
    1. [S814050] Genealogies of Virginia Families Vol. I, from Tyler's Quarterly Historical and Genealogical Magazine.

Research Links  Find Benjamin Gaines Botts at the following sites -

Ancestry records for Benjamin Gaines Botts