NOTES ON THE ANCESTRY OF  Robert Alexander Fleming

I have not yet been able to prove a father for Robert Alexander Fleming. The best evidence we have is a letter from Mrs. Walter Fleming to Mrs. John R. Phillips, which states: "Dr. Walter Fleming's grandfather, Robert Fleming, was born in North Carolina ca 1785 and died in Harris Co., Ga. in 1867. His father was Scotch and his grandfather was probably born in Scotland. Robert Fleming moved with his parents to Georgia where they had relatives. He married Mary Watson of Columbia (or Warren) County, Ga. and lived there until he moved to Harris Co., Ga. The parents of Robert Fleming are not known but his father was probably James or John Fleming. It is said that Hon. William Fleming of Augusta belonged to my husband's branch of the family." 
William Fleming of Augusta was the son of Porter Fleming, who was the son of Robert Fleming and Thursza Farrar. Robert Fleming was born in 1777. He was in Lincoln County, Georgia, by 1807. He died in Augusta, Richmond County. Columbia County was formed from Richmond County, and is adjacent to Lincoln County. Robert named a son "Robert Alexander Fleming." The parents of Robert Fleming who m. Thursza Farrar were James Fleming and Margaret McMurray. This James was the son of Samuel Fleming (see below). Interestingly, our Robert Alexander Fleming had a great-grandson named Porter Thomas Fleming. Porter Fleming, son of Robert and Thursza Fleming, also named a son Thomas Porter.  

SAMUEL FLEMING, b 1718 in County Antrim, Ireland
1. James Fleming, b abt 1743 in County Antrim (m Margaret McMurray)
2. William Fleming, b abt 1750 in County Antrim (m Mary Laird)
3. John Fleming, b abt 1753 in County Antrim (m Jane Clements)
4. Robert Fleming, b abt 1758 in County Antrim (m // Allen, Sara Moss)
5. Samuel Fleming, b 11 November 1760 in County Antrim (m Mary Scott, Mary Grier)

#1 James Fleming (above) d 20 September 1812 in Columbia County, and might be the James who was Robert Alexander Fleming's guardian in 1806. This James had a son Robert, b 1777, who named his own son Robert Alexander Fleming. 
#2 William Fleming (above) died in Jefferson County, Georgia abt 1820. (Jefferson County is just south of Columbia County.) He had a son, Robert, b "abt 1790". I have not found any further information on this Robert. William had another son James, who also might qualify as the guardian of our Robert. This William is my best assumption for the father of our Robert Alexander Fleming
#3 John Fleming (above) died in Jefferson County, Georgia in 1828.  He might be the John from whom Robert bought land in 1807 (transaction witnessed by James Fleming)


Other families I have investigated in this search include: 

ROBERT FLEMING, b abt 1733 probably in Northern Ireland, d 1790 in York Co., South Carolina
1. Alexander Fleming, b abt 1757
2. Elijah Fleming, b 1758
3. Robert Fleming, b 1759
4. William Walker Fleming, b 8 May 1761 in Baltimore County, Maryland (**Robert Alexander Fleming named a son William Walker)

This family lived in Hall and Franklin Counties, Georgia and then many of them migrated to Texas.
#4 William Walker Fleming (above) had a son, "Robert H. Fleming", born bef. 1790, about whom nothing else is known at this time. While this is an interesting lead, I have not found any data to connect the Robert Fleming family to Columbia County; also, Census records indicate that Robert Alexander Fleming was born in North Carolina.

JOHN ALEXANDER FLEMING, d 1812 in Columbia Co., Georgia
I consider John Alexander Fleming to be a possible father of Robert based on his name (Robert named his eldest son John Alexander Fleming), and his residence in Columbia County. Operating against this idea is that Robert had a guardian in 1806, presuming his father was deceased by then, and that Robert had inherited the land that his guardian, James Fleming, paid the taxes on.  Inventory of the Estate of John Alexander Fleming.

JOHN FLEMING, b 1776 in Charleston, South Carolina, d abt 1840 in Alabama, m (1) Keshia Gassaway, (2) Mary "Polly" Flynn

There are several Fleming lineages on the Internet which connect two or more of the sons of Robert Alexander Fleming to  John Fleming and Mary "Polly" Flynn. I have not been able to find the source of this error. However, I am confident that the list of children I have given for Robert is accurate. I have found no evidence of a connection between the family of Robert Alexander Fleming and the family of John Fleming of South Carolina, although such a connection may very well exist in an earlier generation. A number of John Fleming of South Carolina's descendants also lived in Coffee/Dale County, Alabama, however, I believe based on the following analysis that these families are not related to each other:

The Bible of John Alexander Fleming and Nancy Watson was at one time in the possession of Sarah "Sallie" Fleming Warren. The Bible was lost in the flood in Geneva, Alabama in 1929, however, the data was preserved in previous copies, one of which belonged to Mrs. Esther Fleming White, granddaughter of William Leroy Fleming. Esther Fleming White's records list as the children of Robert Alexander Fleming and Mary "Polly" Watson: John Alexander, James, Jesse, William Walker, Augustus, Francis Marion, Isaac, Elizabeth, Emily, George, and Mary.

(1) The Memoirs of Mary Love Edwards Fleming, wife of William Leroy Fleming (son of John Alexander Fleming), identifies the following as cousins of her husband: George, Henry, and James Fleming (sons of Jesse Fleming), Edmond, Dawson and Thomas Fleming (sons of William Walker Fleming), Jeff and John Fleming (sons of James Fleming).
(2) A memoir of William Leroy Fleming (son of John Alexander Fleming), identifies his grandfather as Robert Fleming, born in North Carolina "of Scotch descent".

I find in the 1840 Dale County Census, in the same general area: Yancey Fleming, W. L. Fleming, and Gasaway Fleming. I believe these to be sons of John Fleming of South Carolina, along with Littleberry Fleming who settled in Monroe County.
The sons of Robert Alexander Fleming: William Walker Fleming, Jesse Fleming, Isaac W. Fleming, and John Alexander Fleming, all purchased land in the same area of Coffee County, T5N R21E and T5N R22E, which is the Clintonville/New Brockton area, after 1850. Before that, they were in Harris County, Georgia.  See land records.

The family of Robert Alexander Fleming is closely connected by marriage with the following families: Watson, Huff, Dismukes, Cornett, and McGee. All of these families were in Harris County, Georgia, in the 1830s/1840s. The names Watson, Dismukes, and Huff have been passed down as middle names in Robert's family for several generations. I don't find any marriages with these families in the known children of John Fleming of South Carolina.
1.  John Alexander Fleming (m. Nancy
Watson;  Margaret Huff widow of his brother Isaac) [Nancy
Watson was the niece of John's  mother Mary "Polly" Watson]
2.  James Fleming (m. Mary B.
Huff;  Nancy //) [I believe Mary and Margaret
Huff were sisters, and related to W. Huff of Harris County, Georgia]
3.  Jesse Fleming (m. Grace A. Moore;  Millicent
4.  William Walker Fleming (m. Henrietta
5.  Augustus Fleming (m. Mary Marshall;  Emily Thompson)
6.  Francis Marion Fleming (m. Hannah Jane Garrett;  Mary F.
7.  Isaac E. Fleming (m. Margaret E.
Huff) [Isaac's son married the daughter of Martha Ann Dismukes Hundley, Martha was the sister of Walker's wife Henrietta]
8.  Elizabeth Fleming (m. William Leroy
Watson;  William Milton McGee) [William Leroy Watson was the brother of
Nancy Watson, wife of John Alexander; Elizabeth Fleming was his second wife; he was first married to Bethany  Caroline Dismukes, sister of Walker's wife Henrietta]
9.  Emily Fleming (m. William Durham) [Emily's son married Cordelia
Cornett, niece of Jesse's wife Millicent]
10.  George Fleming (m. Martha Ann
Watson)   [Martha Ann was the niece of Nancy
Watson, wife of John Alexander]
11.  Mary Fleming (m. Jacob Kelly, John W. Hurst, Sr.)

The book "John Fleming - Carolina to California: Some descendants and in-laws 1734-1972" lists the following as children of John Fleming and Mary Flynn, citing "Brief Sketch of Family History" by Thomas M. Fleming, c. 1912-1926 (p 24)
1. Gassaway Fleming m. Elizabeth //
2. William Leroy Fleming m. Phalbia Hutto
3. Littleberry Fleming, m. Michel Abagail Daniel
4. Yancy Fleming, m //, Ellen A. McArthur
5. Epps Fleming
6. Susan Fleming
7. Gatsy Fleming
8. Bettsey Fleming
9. Martha Fleming

The same source lists the following as children of #1 above Gassaway Fleming (p 27):
1. Mary E. Fleming
2. Reubin A. Fleming
3. Harriet B. Fleming
4. Epsey C. Fleming
5. Susan E. Fleming
6. Duncan Fleming
7. Gatsy Fleming
8. Mary J. Fleming
9. William J. Fleming
10. Joseph Fleming
11. Gassaway Fleming, Jr. m. Martha J. //
12. Walter C. Fleming, m Exaline //


Anyone wishing to contact me about the data on these pages can e-mail me at

Georgia V. Fleming,
Enterprise, Coffee County, Alabama