The home has a datestone inscribed “I & J Dixon – 1732” – The ‘I’ being John’s son, Isaac. When John died in 1740 Isaac inherited and lived in the home. When he died in 1766, his son inherited it. When this John died it was inherited by his son, Isaac. Yes, they liked repeating familial names! Finally, when this Isaac died the house was inherited by his oldest son, Jesher. In 1832 Jesher sold the home to the Wilsons, a fellow Quaker family with long ties to the area, and built his own house on Southwood Road, which is also still standing. I will write about that house in a future post…
Henry Dixon, son of the immigrant William Dixon, purchased two hundred acres in Mill Creek Hundred in 1726, at the age of 34. He built a one-room log house on his property in what is now northern Delaware. When he passed away in 1742 it was inherited by his son, Samuel Dixon, who later sold it in 1771 before moving to Fayette County in southwest Pennsylvania.
The new owner in 1771, James Jackson, expanded the house at least twice. His son, Thomas Jackson, inherited the home in 1818 and gave the home a final expansion at some point in 1822, removing the remains of the log house from the interior. A later owner added the front porch.
It is currently in use as a Chiropractor/massage therapist office.
Current Google Street View screenshot:
For more information, visit the Mill Creek Hundred History Blog. You can also read this detailed Architectural Description
and Statement of Significance prepared in 2000 by the Center for Historic Architecture and Design at the University of Delaware.
The Dixons seemed to have one thing in common: every couple of generations they got the urge to explore, to move to the frontier and stake their claim on uninhabited land. William’s parents or grandparents certainly did so, most likely as part of King James’ Plantation of Ireland. William and his sisters took the BIG leap and left for Penn’s Colony in the New World in 1689, even as William of Orange was landing in northeast Ireland with a large force that would eventually push King James’ Jacobite forces almost into the Atlantic! In the mid-1700’s William Dixon’s descendants moved to North Carolina and western Pennsylvania. In the early 1800’s they moved on again to Ohio just a few years after the NorthWest Territories were opened to settlers.
One byproduct of all this moving and exploring was that they were almost always on the outer edges of the normal channels of commerce. Thus, they were farmers. And one thing farmers both produce and consume in large quantites is grain! So it’s no surprise that wherever the Dixons roamed they built and operated mills.
William Dixon lived in the Christiana Hundred section of far northern Delaware. The northern border was Pennsylvania, with Christiana Creek, Brandywine Creek and Red Clay Creek as the other boundaries. His descendants built a mill somewhere south of Centerville, Delaware, on what became known as Dixon’s Run. As of 1888 it was still standing and although a “very aged structure” it was still in use by the Edwin Griffith estate.
William’s grandson Simon Dixon bought land in North Carolina (from the ‘Lords Proprietors’) in 1751 He erected Dixon’s Mill on Cane Creek for corn and/or grain grinding. It was burned and rebuilt many times but always used that creek for water power. In 1925 a millstone from his mill was used as a commemorative gravestone as part of a monument erected by the Alamance County Historical Society. In 1953 a fire destroyed the remaining house and mill and it was purchased by a wealthy citizen of Durham who purportedly disassembled it down to the ground in a search for hidden gold.
Simon Dixon Mill on Cane Creek – Chatham County, NC
In my direct line another of William’s grandsons, Joseph Dixon, moved south of the Cane Creek area in 1764, three miles south of present-day Siler City. While most of his siblings moved on to what was then Fayette County in western Pennsylvania, he and many other Dixons (Samuel, Nathan, Caleb, Joshua) bought land up and down Tick Creek/Tick Ridge for several miles. The Napton Monthly Meeting and burial ground was in the ‘middle’ of this property. One of these Dixons (Joseph’ son, Jesse) built a saw and grist mill on eleven acres near the Rocky River (see map above) which operated until 1879, but had fallen into ruin by the time Ben F. Dixon visited in 1934. Nearby, on the same Dixon tract, was an Old Tory Fort dating to the Revolution. As of 1934 it belonged to the estate of John J. Raskob.
In 1800 the first Dixons moved to the Scioto River Valley of Ohio. Caleb’s three sons Daniel, George and Jonathan moved to Ross County, Liberty Township. Daniel built a mill on the Scioto River and it was still grinding in 1934. Three years later, in 1803 three more Dixons moved to the area – Joseph’s sons Jesse, Samuel (my direct ancestor), and Joseph. Joseph built a saw and grist mill on Salt Creek which feeds the Scioto River. To this day if you look at a map of Londonderry, Ohio in southeast Ross County you will find, just to the east of town, along a portion of the Salt Creek — Dixon Mill Road. And it is on that road that I found the remains of the old mill. Here are some photos I took in 2011.
As the self-designated family genealogist I am keenly aware of how quickly the information of past generations can be lost. I am so thankful that my mother started interviewing relatives and taking notes when I was just a child. Most of the people she talked to are now dead and gone, bits and pieces of their memories preserved in her notebook. It was her initial investigation that enabled us to contact a distant cousin who was able to connect us to the rest of the family tree going back to 1633. Over the last several years I have been filling in the blanks and connecting the dots, but as most genealogists know for every piece of information you find you usually discover the existence of several other pieces of information which are out of your reach. As an example, I recently connected with a long lost cousin through DNA testing. Once this was established we began looking for connections from the Dixon Quakers of North Carolina to this person’s oldest known ancestor who died in 1801 in Georgia. In the process I discovered where yet one more branch of Dixons had disappeared to and found several new monthly meetings where Dixons had attended. One such meeting was the Lost Creek MM in eastern Tennessee. I also ran across a book written about this meeting entitled “Lost Creek Memories” by none other than Ben F. Dixon, the author of two major resources for our Dixon line. As it turns out he has authored over 20 books on history, mainly Quaker-related. So now there are an additional 20+ books that I know about but have no way to read as they are mostly out-of-print and are probably collecting dust on a few library shelves.
Now, on top of all that which genealogists have been dealing with for years, no doubt, comes the internet. There are many web pages which I consider to be vital resources. I read them again and again finding new clues. But what if those pages were suddenly gone? What if the hosting account ended, or the owners passed away? Do I have copies of the information somewhere? And even if I have a copy, what about all the other people who might need that information? Thus, I have decided that I need to copy all of these sites and republish them on my web site. Normally this would be considered some sort of copyright infringement but when you run across a web site with vital, unique family information and it hasn’t been updated since 1998 you should be scared! So now I have another project.
You can look for these pages here (at some point). All of my other genealogy data is on the WikiTree site. (that link is to my great-grandfather, Walton Artie Dixon.)
My original idea below has been superceded by the following:
1. I am now using [WikiTree](https://wikitree.com) for all my online genealogy. It has connected me to other Dixon genealogists more than any other source. It solves two problems – finding other fellow researchers and having a way to collaborate with them.
2. An actual Dixon/Dickson Family Association is in the works, spearheaded by Brent Dickson frm the U.K. I’ll post details when it is up and running.
Original post follows:
I have spent much of my free time today scouring the internet for Dixon family information. I refuse to believe that I’m the only Dixon descendant doing so, yet sometimes it feels that way. Queries and pieces of information scattered throughout the world. Somewhere — in some dusty attic in Indiana, or some library shelf or storage room in Delaware, or some computer database in Scotland not connected to the internet, or some Parish register in Ireland in some basement — are the details of my ancestors. I know they are there, I just can’t get to them! And what is worse is that some of their owners don’t seem to care.
I can’t necessarily do anything about that, but I can do something about my fellow Dixon researchers. Many of them have run into brick walls and dead ends. All they know is a name, maybe a death date, maybe a city and state. Beyond that it is all black. Now, again I can’t necessarily do anything about that for most researchers, but for Dixon researchers I am determined to help! And my desire is also somewhat selfish as I intend to help myself. I want us to all connect and pool our data, our information, our contacts. And I have been wanting to do this for a long time and have, for some reason, kept putting it off. I obsess over the details and leave the shovel leaning against the shed. But no more, I hereby announce the following:
I am hereby starting the Dixon Family Association
I envision this entity to eventually include all descendants of not only Henry Dixon (b. 1633) but the descendants of one Thomas Dicson born some time in the 13th century. Now normally it would be quite silly to imagine that this was possible. But times are changing. The Dixon DNA Project (administered by Susan Branam) has 225 members and hudreds of participating testers! Click the link, and you can see the current results and sign up for your very own DNA test.
Keep checking this site for future updates and extra web pages with details of how you can join up. For now, leave me a message in the comments below!