Mize Brothers Homestead
by Joel Mize

Once upon a time back in the year 1723, two young, strong brothers, who were sons of James Mize of Surry County, Virginia, asked the King of England for some land of their own in the new country called America. They wanted the land to be a home for their families so they could build a cozy new house, plant some crops and have some animals. Fortunately this land was by the small river and also along old Stony Creek which was a good place to put a water-wheel which would grind corn and do other work by using the water power.

Well, the King wanted prosperity for loyal subjects like these two young brothers, named James Jr. and our Grand-pa, Jeremiah Mize, so in September of the year 1728 he issued a Royal Patent in Virginia Colony which gave the brothers 118 acres of pretty good land joining the river and the Stony Creek. But in those days it was not so easy to know just which land was yours and which land belonged to somebody else. So the land had to be surveyed and a map drawn so everyone would know just where the land was located. Here is a description of how that land was described:

The Mize land ran from the mouth of Ruine Creek (same as Stony Creek), up the creek as it meandered to a beech, then the line crossed the creek..east..north to a pine, then east..south..to a corner hickory, then east..north..to the Little Creek, then down the creek as it meandered to the river, and up the river to the start.

Now this new land was located very near where some friendly Indian tribes also lived. In fact, running through the land was a path that the Indians used to travel for long distances to trade beads and other useful things between different villages. So it was not unusual for these Mize families to see some Indians - men, women and children, perhaps even every day. Sometimes Grandpa Jere (short for Jeremiah) would trade a knife and some other things made in England to the Indians for maybe a deerskin coat to keep one of the children warm during the winter or for some corn.

This land grew to be a very good home for Grand-pa Jeremiah, his wife Granda-ma Grace, and his second wife Grandma Tabitha and all their children. He had at least six boys, including our Grandpa Jeremiah Jr. who later moved to South Carolina where he and his wife Nancy had two sons -- John and another of our Grandpas, Thomas. But nobody seems to know how many daughters of Grand-pa Jeremiah lived and played on this land.

Note: More details of this early Mize homestead are in Long Ago in Lunenburg on Stony Creek of the Meherrin by June Evans; a second source for the encounters between white settlers and Indians may be found in History of the Dividing Line Betwixt Virginia and North Carolina by surveyor William Byrd.


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