Daniel May
(ca. 1791 - aft. 1839)
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Our earliest source of information on this family was compiled over a period from the 1930s to 1950s by a descendant and genealogist, Mrs. Tress May Francis. [1]

5. Daniel May
m. Peggy Allen ca. 1816

No other records are known regarding the family of Daniel May

It was previously thought that Daniel May was the first child born after his parents moved the faimly to their farm in Washington County, North Carolina. However, other information on his sister, Elizabeth (Betsey), indicates she was born about a year before Daniel.[2]

Daniel was the youngest son when the family moved to Kentucky in 1800. At the age of nine he probably had to assume much of the responsibility for helping his pregant mother and, along with Elizabeth, caring for his sister Mary (Polly), age three, during the trip. His three older brothers had to help John with the family belongings and livestock on the journey.

There has not been very much written about the life of Daniel. The most complete work on the May family history by Tress May Francis only mentions that he left Floyd County in early life, supposedly about 1816, and she had found no information on where he settled or if he had a family. Court records indicate that Daniel was in the Prestonsburg area as early as 1812-13.

On September 28, 1813, Daniel and three other men were appointed by the court to view the courthouse and recommend changes. He and the Court Clerk, William James Mayo, made a report on the courthouse in May 1814. On March 28, 1815, Daniel was listed as the administrator of his father's estate by the Commissioners of the Court. This is somewhat unusual since he was only 24 years old and had three older brothers in the county at the time. On January 27, 1817 Daniel was mentioned to be a house carpenter and joiner, a common trade and skill of the May family. John Spurlock, age 15, was bound to him as an apprentice. Daniel probably was staying at the home of his brother, Samuel, helping with the building of Samuel's new home and working on construction of the courthouse, which was built in during the period from1818 to 1821.

On December 8, 1824 there is a Floyd County record of the marriage of a Daniel May and Peggy Allen. The marriage bond was signed by Daniel May and Thomas Evans, Samuel May's brother-in-law. The Caleb May family was in Floyd County in the 1820s and records of his sons show that some were married in the 1820s but none were named Daniel and none married an Allen. Surprisingly there is no reference to this marriage or to a Peggy Allen in a history of the descendants of John Allen in Eastern Kentucky. [3] This book does record the family of Daniel's brother, Reuben, who married Sally Allen. It seems reasonable, however, to assume it was John's son, Daniel, who was married in 1824.

There are also some records of a Daniel May in Pike County who was born about 1790 in Virginia and was married to Nancy Ann Ball. He is listed in Pike County Census records from 1840 through 1860. Although the date of birth is close, he probably is not Daniel, the son of John May.

Even though Daniel may have left Floyd County in the 1820s he is known to be living in 1839 according to a deed filed in Pike County, listing Daniel as a surviving brother of Tlepolard (Phillip Pollard) May. This deed is transcribed in the essay on Tlepolard.

 Francis, Tress May.  May Genealogy. Southern Branch with Biographical Sketches: 1776-1956.      Unpublished, filed at Kentucky Historical Society, Frankfort, Ky. 1956.
2.  Sewell, Juanelle S.   We, The Little People, McDowell Publications, Itica, KY, 1987.
3. Begley, Jackson Allen. A History and Genealogical Record of the Allens - Begleys- Mays of Kentucky,
     The Descendants of John Allen from 1750 to the Present Time, Cincinnati, 1949.

Continue with an essay on the sixth child of John and Sarah, Mary May.

              © 2000 Fred T. May                Return to Index of John May essays