|Richard James Gunn
born circa 1827
died 1870-1880 Brunswick County, Virginia
Richard James Gunn is not a proven child of Freeman James and Elizabeth
Irby Jordan Gunn. Perhaps it is best to present what IS known and let the
readers draw their own conclusions. He married into the Elmore family
making his connection to brothers Samuel Harrison Gunn and John
Bridgeforth Gunn similar. The author of "My Folks Back Home" lists
Richard as the son of Freeman James Gunn.
Some records show Richard James as James R. Gunn, but Richard James is
prevalent. He was born about 1827 or 1828 (depending on what census record
you choose) in Brunswick County, Virginia. He was the oldest child, with at
least two younger brothers and one sister Mary S. Gunn. Richard's father,
Freeman, was a small plantation owner, who at one time owned about 200
acres more or less in Brunswick County, Virginia.
According to marriage documents, Richard James Gunn married Mary
Augusta Elmore in Lunenburg County, Virginia on March 27, 1851. Richard
was 30 years old. Mary Augusta Elmore was 23. She was the daughter of
James W. Elmore, Jr, and his wife Martha Barnes.
Richard's wife Mary Augusta was the sister of Lucy Ann Elmore, who married
Richard's brother Samuel Harrion Gunn in January of 1857.
Richard and Samuel Harrison's brother John Burrell Gunn married Lucy
Jane Elmore in 1853. Lucy Jane Elmore was the daughter of James W.
Elmore, SR and his wife Mary Elizabeth Pritchett, known as "Polly". Lucy
JANE was the aunt of Richard and Samuel's wives, Mary Augusta and Lucy
ANN Elmore respectively.
According to the 1850 Cenus of Brunswick County, Mary Augusta was living
with her parents, and her given age was 16, making her birth year about 1834.
In the 1860 census, Richard James appeared as Jas. R. Gunn. He and Mary
Augusta and three children were living in the poor house, operated by
William Sledge and his wife Nancy. Richard and Mary Augusta's children
were recorded as follows: Sarah age 8, Maria (later recorded as Martha and
Mariah) age 6, and James H. Gunn a son age 4. There were 28 people in the
poor house. By 1860, Richard's parents had sold left their farm and had
relocated to the Powell Plantation in Nottoway County. According to death
records of Brunswick County, Mary Augusta Elmore Gunn died March 16,
1868 from complications of child birth. Her parents recorded her death.
In 1870 the census list the family of Richard James Gunn in the Totaro
District of Brunswick County. Richard James was 43 years old, his daughter
Sarah W. Gunn was 17, daughter Mariah was 15, daughter Mary E. was 8.
Birth and death records for Brunswick County note 3 other children born to
Richard James Gunn and Mary Augusta Elmore who did not survive infancy.
They were a son, James H. Gunn born in 1857 who died in May 1861; a
daughter Fannie Gunn born Sept 14, 1862 who died Oct 5, 1867; and Cora
Gunn who was born and died in March 1868 followed by the death of her
mother Mary Augusta on March 16 of the same year. Richard's occupation
was listed as miller.
The author of "My Folks Back Home" says that Richard did not serve in the
War Between the States because he was blind in one eye. It is not known how
he may have sustained the injury. Because both of Richard's brothers and
numerous of his cousins all served, it must have been difficult to remain home
Richard James Gunn and Mary Augusta Elmore had several children whose
births are documented.
1. Sarah W. Gunn was born in 1851. She married her first cousin, John E.
Gunn in 1873. He was the son of John B. Gunn and Lucy Jame Elmore.
Sarah W. Gunn gave her age for the marriage register as 22, and named her
2. James H. Gunn was born in 1857. He died at the age of 4 according to
Brunswick County mortality records, from croup. He died in May of 1861.
His parents were recorded as James R. and Augusta Gunn.
3. Fannie Gunn a daughter was born September 14, 1862. Fannie died from
causes not stated on October 5, 1867. She was 5 years old according to
mortality records. Her parents were recorded as Richard and Augusta Gunn.
4. Mary E. Gunn a daughter born April 29, 1861 . Mary Elizabeth died Jun
7, 1939 and is buried in Riverview Cemetery in Richmond, Virginia. She
married Albert Murray in December of 1877, and the couple had 6 children.
5. Fannie Gunn a daughter born Sep 14, 1861 and died Oct 5, 1867
6. . Cora Augusta Gunn was born March 16, 1867 and died Dec 7, 1948. She
married Robert Trainham, and secondly to James W. Tucker on Jan 16, 1889
in Lunenburg County, Virginia. The couple had three children. Cora is
buried in Lakeview Cemetery, in Nottoway County, Virginia
On March 14, 1868 in Brunswick County, James W. Elmore and his wife
Martha Barnes Elmore reported the death of their daughter Mary Augusta
Gunn, age 27. Mary Augusta died from complications of childbirth, noted as
child bed. Her husband was recorded as Richard J. Gunn. Mary Augusta
gave birth to at least six children, but only their daughter Sarah W. Gunn is
known to have survived infancy.
No record for Richard James Gunn's death was found, and he did not appear
in the 1880 census of Virginia.