Mayfields of South Carolina

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Mayfield Families Listed in the 1790 Federal Census for South Carolina

By Phil Norfleet


Congress originally authorized the establishment of a Federal Census to enumerate the United States population and, thus, determine each state's representation in the House of Representatives. The first Federal Census, in 1790, went only slightly beyond that scope to distinguish between males 16 and over, males under 16, all females, other free persons, and all slaves.

Extant Reports

Several of the 1790 schedules have been lost over the years, most of them during the War of 1812, when the British burned Washington DC.  However, eleven (11) of the State reports are extant; all have been published and indexed as follows:

1.  Connecticut

2.  Maine (although Maine was then still part of Massachusetts)

3.  Maryland (except Allegany, Calvert, and Somerset counties)

4.  Massachusetts

5.  New Hampshire

6.  New York

7.  North Carolina (except Caswell, Granville, and Orange counties; and all of what is now Tennessee)

8.  Pennsylvania

9.  Rhode Island

10. South Carolina

11. Vermont

With respect to Mayfield genealogy, the most serious losses are the reports for Tennessee (then a part of North Carolina), Virginia (which then included all of Kentucky) and Georgia.  Some attempts have been made to produce substitutes for these missing census reports by using tax lists.  Such attempts are better than nothing, but do leave much to be desired.  Incidentally, the published substitute reports for both Virginia and Georgia do not show any Mayfield families in those states.  I'm not sure about Georgia, but I do know that there were several Mayfields living in Virginia, Kentucky and Tennessee in 1790.

Census Day

The Congressional legislation, that established the Federal Census requirement, designated one specific day as "census day." The information given to the census taker was to be correct as of that day;  It should be noted that this day was not necessarily the day that the enumeration was actually recorded at each house.  Persons who died after "census day" were to be included because they were alive on census day.  Children born after census day were to be omitted from the census reports.  These instructions were not always followed to the letter, but we must be aware of them and evaluate the census information as if they were followed. One should not assume that an entry contains errors or omissions before we have studied it and compared it with data from other sources. However, it is useful to note the date of the actual enumeration when it is given at the top of the page. It does show each family as residents of a given place on that day and may help in the interpretation of the information furnished in the report.  The "census day" for the 1790 enumeration was the first Monday in August 1790.

Identities of the Mayfield Families

Based on my review of  the extant 1790 reports, it appears that most of the Mayfield families in the United States were then living in South Carolina.  The  table shown below presents some of my opinions as to the identity of the 25 Mayfield families shown in the published Federal Census (1790) for the State of South Carolina.

The page number on which each family appeared is included in the table.  For most states and counties enumerated, the reports reflect the same order of names as were in the original reports produced by the individual census takers.  Accordingly, household names that are close to each other in the reports, probably were also living in fairly close geographical proximity as well.

County Page # Name WM's =>16 WM's <16 WF's Remarks
1.  Chester 14 Abraham Mayfield 1 1 2 This Abraham (ca. 1761-1840) is probably the son of Jonathan Mayfield (d. 1818).
2.  Chester 14 Allen Mayfield 1 3 1 Allen (ca. 1765-1819) is the son of Jonathan Mayfield (d. 1818).
3.  Chester 14 Edmond Mayfield 1 3 2 Edmond (ca. 1763-1832) is the son of Robert Mayfield (d. 1816).
4.  Chester 14 Elisha Mayfield 1 0 3 Elisha (ca. 1765-1811) is probably the son of Robert Mayfield (d. 1816).
5.  Chester 14 Jonathan Mayfield 2 0 1 Jonathan is probably the brother of Robert Mayfield (d. 1816).  The 2nd male, age 16 and over, is probably John Mayfield, son of Jonathan.  Final division of Jonathan's estate, in Fairfield District in 1824, indicates that he had 6 heirs: Abraham, Allen, John, Priscilla Atterberry, Elizabeth McDaniel, and Mary Roden (wife of William Roden).
6.  Chester 14 Obediah Mayfield 1 0 2 Obediah (1769-1849) is probably the son of Robert Mayfield (d. 1816).
7.  Chester 14 Robert Mayfield 1 1 1 Robert (d. 1816) is the father of Edmond and Elisha cited above; the 1 person in his household under age 16 is probably Ezekiel AKA Sugar Mayfield. Final division of Robert's estate, in Chester District in 1818, indicates that he had 8 heirs, 4 of whom were listed by name: Abraham, Edmond, Samuel, and Sugar.
8.  Chester 14 Stephen Mayfield 1 1 3 Stephen (ca. 1758-1846) is probably the son of Robert Mayfield (d. 1816); the 1 male under age 16 is probably Stephen's son, Luke Mayfield (1777-1853).
9.  Fairfield 21 Samuel Mayfield 1 0 5 Samuel (1759-1837), a Revolutionary War Veteran, is the son of Robert Mayfield (d. 1816).
10.  Greenville 68 Isaac Mayfield 4 4 5 Isaac (1742-1822) is probably the brother of Micajah Mayfield (d. 1798), Jesse (d. 1833), and Randolph Mayfield (d. ca. 1825).
11. Greenville 68 Jesse Mayfield 1 3 2 Jesse (d. 1833) is probably the brother of Micajah Mayfield (d. 1798), Isaac (1742-1822), and Randolph Mayfield (d. ca. 1825). He remained in SC until his removal to McMinn County TN in about 1820.
12. Greenville 68 John Mayfield 3 0 2 John is probably another brother of Isaac (1742-1822), Micajah (d. 1798) and Randolph (d. ca. 1825).  His subsequent fate is unknown; he apparently did not remove to KY like his brothers.
13. Greenville 68 Micajah Mayfield 2 4 3 Micajah (d. 1798) is probably another brother of Isaac (1742-1822), Jesse (d. 1833) and Randolph (d. ca. 1825).
14. Greenville 68 Randolph Mayfield 1 2 3 Randolph is probably the brother of Micajah (d. 1798), Jesse (d. 1833), and Isaac Mayfield (1742-1822).
15. Greenville 69 Thomas Mayfield 2 0 3 Thomas (d. 1803) is probably the father of Abraham (1763-1850) and John Mayfield (ca. 1773-1852).  The 2nd male over age 16 is probably Thomas's son, John Mayfield.
16. Greenville 70 Abraham Mayfield 1 1 1 Abraham (1763-1850) is probably the son of Thomas Mayfield (d. 1803).  This Abraham applied for a Revolutionary War Pension in 1833.
17. Pendleton 82 Elijah Mayfield 1 0 6 Elijah (1762-1843) is a son of James Mayfield (d. 1780); he applied for a Revolutionary War Pension in 1834.
18. Pendleton 82 Isham Mayfield 1 0 2 Isham is a brother of Stephen Mayfield (d. 1834).
19. Pendleton 82 John Mayfield 1 0 1 Identity of this John Mayfield is unknown to me.  However, he is probably closely related to Ambrose and to the other Mayfields living in Pendleton at this time.
20. Pendleton 82 Ambrose Mayfield 1 5 5 Identity of this Ambrose Mayfield is unknown to me.  However, he is probably a brother of John Mayfield, whose land was adjacent to that of Ambrose.
21. Pendleton 82 Stephen Mayfield 1 1 1 Stephen (d. 1834) is a brother of Isham Mayfield.  He is almost certainly the man who died in Overton County TN in 1834.
22. Pendleton 82 John Mayfield 4 5 2 Identity of this John Mayfield is unknown to me.  However, he is probably closely related to the other Mayfields in Pendleton.
23. Union 91 Mary Mayfield 2 2 2 Mary is the widow of John Mayfield the Tory (d. 1781) of Browns Creek. The four males, as shown in the census, are her sons:  William and John Mayfield (age 16 and over); plus Richard and Battle Mayfield (both under age 16).
24. Union 93 William Mayfield 1 1 2 William is probably a relative of the Greenville County Mayfields (Isaac, Micajah, etc.); he lived near the residence of Daniel Brumit in the northern part of Union County.
25. York 29 Abraham Mayfield 1 1 1 Identity of this Abraham Mayfield is not known to me.

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