Click here if there is no menu on the left.
Other Caviness sitesThis Site
Joe Cabaniss GenealogyGenerations 2-3-4
Susan Marie Cabaniss BradfordGenerations 5-6-7-8
Laura Cabaness JohnsonGenerations 9-10-11


Although I have done research on my Caviness family, I can not take credit for all of the work included in these pages. The information is the results of the research of Mrs. Alloa Caviness Anderson, the late Dr. Allen Cabaniss, the late John Plath Green and countless others who have graciously shared their family histories with me. Where I am able to add to these works, I have done so, and request that you contact me with lines on which you may add. You will find below only some of the information I have gathered over the years. For those requesting additional information please email me.

The First Generation

2 Henri1 Cabanis, French Protestant immigrant to Virginia, born in France ca. 1673, the son of Piere and Ann (Soultier) Cabanis, died in Westover Parish, Prince George County, Virginia, before August 1720.

In France, he married Mary -------. She died in Virginia about 1706-1708. Henri married second, Magdalane ------- before 1708. It may be that 2 Henri married a third time for he named in his Will, "my loving wife, Mary Cabanis;" and "Mary Cabanis, the other executrix" is given in the probate of that Will at Merchants Hope, Martins Brandon Parish, Prince George County, Virginia, on August 20, 1720. It is possible that the second "Mary" and "Magdalane" are the same wife, with the use of "Mary" developing over the years. There is also undocumented information of a colloquial "Molly Harris" as Henri's wife.

2 Henri's name appears first on the ship of the Mary and Ann of London as "Henri Cabanis, sa femme et un enfant," among 205 refugees led by Oliver, Marquis de la Muce, and Charles de Sailly, sailing from Gravesend, England harbor. Captain George Hawes acknowledged the receipt of payment for transportation of those 207 persons on April 19, 1700. Also on that list were "Isaac Chabanas, son fils, et Catherine Bomard", and is presumed that Isaac was an older brother of our Henri.

After thirteen weeks at sea the ship arrived at the mouth of James River below Richmond, Virginia on July 23, 1700. They were settled with the other passengers of the Mary and Ann and of the Peter and Anthony. The royal governor, Colonel Francis Nicholson, reported on August 12 that the refugees had been located at a place "about twenty miles above the Falls of James River, commonly called Manikin Town", a deserted village of the Monacan Indians.

The next appearance of 2 Henri Cabanes is on "a list of ye French refuges that are settled att ye Mannachin Town .... In ye first Shipp," prepared on November 10, 1701 by Colonel William Byrd. There is simply the notation, "Cabanis and his wife". In the 1701/2 census of Manakintown he appears as "Cabany."

The Council of Colonial Virginia soon began to order the naturalization of the persons who had emigrated to its borders: on April 27, 1704, the Justices of Henrico County were ordered to naturalize the persons living in King William Parish and adjacent areas; and the Justices of King William County were also ordered to perform the same duties. More orders were issued in 1705 relating to the naturalization of the Refugees living in King and Queen County. That list included the name, "Henry Cabany" as one of the one hundred and forty eight persons. Of those so listed, there were thirty-eight who were also in the 1701/2 Manakintown census list made by William Byrd.

The manner in which immigrants were persuaded to migrate to American shores included many inducements - the most common one was the offer of fifty acres of land per immigrant. 2 Henri traveled to Henrico County, for in 1708, in that County, he applied for his due of land. This application is found in the Henrico County Orders for 1707-1709, p.35.

     "Upon the petition of Henri Cabiness, These are to be certified that
     there is due unto him two hundred acres of land for the importation 
     of himself and Mary his first wife, with Magdalane his second wife 
     and Magdalane her daughter into this Colony, the same being legally 
     proved in open court.  Dated, 1 May 1708."

When we come to the close of the records on the Immigrant Ancestor, 2 Henri, there is his Will and the Inventory of his estate with which to build a picture of a man who was a goldsmith and sometime banker, literate, convivial in habits, and well-like in the community, whose friends were also in good standing in their social group, and were willing to help in time of need.

     In the Name of God Amen, I Henry Cabanis of Westover Parrish in
     Prince George County being sick and weak in Body, but by the 
     blessing of God in perfect Sence mind & Memory, but calling to mind 
     the uncertainty of this Mortal Life, am desirous to Settle the small 
     Estate it hath pleased the Almighty God to bless me with in this 
     World, do make constitute & Ordain this my Last Will and Testament, 
     revoking and makeing void all other Will or Wills heretofore by me 
     made, first and principally, commend my Soul into the hands of 
     Almighty God, who gave it, begging pardon for my Sins, through Jesus 
     Christ our	Lord, and my Body to be buried according to the discretion 
     of my Executor or Executors hereafter named, and as for my Worldly 
     Goods I give and bequeath in manner & form following as viz - 

     Item I give and bequeath unto my son Henry Cabanis my Silver Shoe 
          buckles and old sword
     Item I give and bequeath unto my son Mathew Cabanis my Largest Gold 
          ring and my Silver belted Sword
     Item I give unto my Son George Cabanis a Gold ring
     Item I give and bequeath the remaining part of my Estate after my 
          Just Debts is paid, to be Equally divided between my Loveing 
          Wife and Children
     Item I do constitute and appoint my Loveing Wife Mary Cabanis and 
          Francis Epes my whole & Sole Executrix and Executor of this my 
          Last Will and Testament
  Henry Cabaniss seald with red wax
	Signed seald and acknowledged to be the Last Will and Testament, 
        as it is contained in the presence of us 

  Drury Bolling
  John Fitzgerrald
  Fra Epes Jun
(Drury Bolling was a Colonel in Henrico County and Fra Epes Jun. was a burgess, tobacco agent, and Justice of the Peace in Prince George County.)

    "At a court held at Merchants Hope for the County of Prince George 
    on the second Tuesday in August being the ninth day of the said month, 
    Anno Dom:  1720.  The above written Last Will and Testament of Henry 
    Cabanis decd:  one of his Executors, and Mary Cabanis the other Executrix 
    having refused to take on the burden and Execution of the Said Will, 
    the said Francis Epes made oath thereto, and it being Witness thereto, is 
    by Order of the Court truly proved and on the motion of the said Francis 
    Epes and his giving Security according to Law Certificate is granted for 
    Obtaining a Probate of the Sd. Will in due form.

		Test.     Wm Hamblin"
At the time of 2 Henri's death, we know that he lived near Petersburg, in the Merchants Hope Court district and that he no longer owned the 200 acres in Henrico County, as far as the Inventory of this estate is concerned. Maybe some day the location of this property may come to light.

An inventory and appraisal of the estate were made by William Epes, John Fitzgerald, and John Paterson, Jr. It included two old horses, two feather beds with and one without furnishings, a rug, a pair of sheets, bedstead, blanket, pewter tankard and porringer, ten pewter spoons, a brass skillet and chafing dish, gridiron, pair of bellows, a brass kettle and pot, a gun, two iron pots, a pair of weights and scales, tin funnel, old pottle pot, a jug, seven old barrels, an old saddle and bridle, an old violin, periwig, and sword, three butter pots, a dozen bottles, two old sifters, and a brass spice mortar, parcel of crucibles, a great coat, old frock coat, old broadcloth suit with waistcoat and two other old coats, a fine hat, 21 old books, two gold rings, one pair of silver shoe buckles, a pair of money scales, a mirror and dram glass, iron and heaters in a box, two chests, a trunk, table cloth and napkins, half dozen knives and forks, a side saddle with furnishings, two barrels of corn, five old chairs and a table, spinning wheel, old frying pan, a parcel of goldsmith's tools and handsaw, a peil, piggin, and grindstone, and three head of cattle. The total was appraised at 45 pounds, 7 shillings, and 7 pence. No mention was made of the 200 acres of Henrico County land indicated above.

Some legitimate inferences have been made from consideration of the will and inventory: that 2 Henri had learned the goldsmith's trade, that he had been smart in dress, and that he was fond of feasting, drinking, and companionship. One can hope the 21 "old books" had been read and reread by him many times. But these are only suppositions. The will and inventory certainly reveal that he was not a landowner and farmer (planter), that he was not wealthy, that he may have been a banker or moneychanger on a small scale, and that he left a wife and three sons.

But for more serious deductions must now be made, since the wife named in the will as Mary. 2 Henri's first wife, Marie (Mary), who came over with him, had died, as noted earlier. The will intimates that his second wife, the French widow Magdalene, had also died; and that he had after 1708 married a third wife, Mary of the will, mother of the second and third sons. For whatever it is worth, family tradition makes her surname Harrison of Harris.

The travels of 2 Henri can thus be chronicled as follows:
   1675+ born at or near, Paris, France
   1698+ moved to England
   1700  immigrated to Manakintowne with wife Marie (Mary) and 
	   infant son, Henry
   1701  census at Manakintowne taken by Wm Byrd "Cabany and wife"
   1704  rented 200 acres in Prince George County, Virginia
   1705  naturalized in King and Queen County, Virginia
   1708  Headrights Act in Henrico County, Virginia with Magdalane
   1709  200 acres registered in Henrico County, Virginia
   1711  York County, Virginia census
   1718  Witness in Prince George County, Virginia; 9 Sept 1718, 
	   White - Hammersley
   1719  Witness in Pr Geo. Co., VA; 13 July 1719, Vaughn - Hardyway; 
	   Smith - Steth
   1720  Pr. Geo. Co., VA  Will, undated, names wife, Mary, and sons 
	   Henry, Matthew, George
   1720/21  Pr. Geo. Co., VA  Inventory presented to court 19 January.
2 Henri's children were:
by (1) Marie (Mary),
21 Henry2 Cavinis born ca 1696 England or France
by (2) Magdalene, none; and
by (3) Mary,
22 Matthew2 Cabanis born ca 1712 Virginia
23 George2 Cabanis born ca 1714 Virginia

Second, Third and Fourth Generations