John Cline Sr. , 1764–1835 (aged 71 years)
A Study of Personal Property Tax RecordsShenandoah County, Virginia; 1782 - 1820 Cline
This study was initiated primarily to identify one John Cline as he appeared on these tax rolls. This John Cline was married to Mary Ann Armstrong June 15, 1789 in Shenandoah Co. This study shows that this John Cline lived in this county continuously from 1787 until 1818 when he moved to Harrison County, Indiana. One will find his name marked with an asterisk (*) to identify this John Cline as he appears on the Tax Rolls and to further separate him from the other John Cline's who may appear on the same years.
This John Cline first appears in 1787 under the name of Isaac Layman and it was noted that Isaac Layman paid the tax for John Cline. This would indicate that John Cline was related to or working for Isaac Layman since he was living in the Layman household. No records can be found to indicate any relationship. John Cline was also listed in the Layman household in 1788 and 1789. Isaac Layman signed the marriage bond with John Cline when he married Mary Ann Armstrong on June 15, 1789. The tax assessor made his assessment on October 30, 1789 and the John Cline family still resided in the Layman household at that time.
The tax records show the number of "tithables" or "taxables" in the first column. In the early years of this study the age of a person to pay a tax, "taxable", was 21 and over, and in later years was lowered to 16 and over. The second and third columns were for recording the numbers of slaves and for the most part there were very few as these mostly German people did not have slaves. The next column listed the number of horses and the next column the number of cattle. Cattle were only taxed for a few years. Other things that were taxed were the number of carriage wheels, billiard tables and other luxuries that were not present in this rural county in this time period, and the only other taxable item listed in this study was in 1799 when one of the other John Cline's was taxed for an Ordinary (tavern) license. The only measure of a persons wealth appears in the number of horses he was taxed for. Often the number of horses listed corresponded with the number of persons in the household.
In the years 1787 to 1796, if there were more than one "taxable" white male in the household, the head of the household was named and the additional "taxables" were listed in brackets (----) after the head of the household. It is a shame that this practice was discontinued after 1796 because it provided valuable information for today's genealogists.
In the years 1787 through 1805 the tax records listed the date that the tax assessor visited each "taxable" and when several were visited on the same day one could draw the conclusion that they were neighbors. This was also a valuable bit of information for someone who is looking at those records today.
The compiler will make some assumptions as to possible family connections of the various Clines that are listed in these tax records.
In the years 1782 to 1785 appeared one Peter Cline who had sons Peter Cline Jr and Phillip Cline. Peter Cline Jr married Mary Westabarger on Aug 20, 1782 and Phillip Cline married Catherine Westabarger on Apr 21, 1782. They were the daughters of George Westabarger. You will note in later listings that George Westabarger was listed for several years in the household of Phillip Cline, his son-in-law. Adam Cline was assessed on the same day as was Peter Cline Jr and Phillip Cline for the years 1790-1791-1792-1793 and it is possible that this Adam Cline was a brother of Peter Jr and Phillip. This is probably the Adam Cline who married Magdaline Golladay on Mar 16, 1790. Adam Cline does not appear on the tax rolls after 1793.
In the year 1818 there appears on the tax rolls George Cline and John Cline Jr as well as their father John Cline Sr. This is the last listing for John Cline Sr as he moves later that year to Harrison County, Indiana.
Besides the aforementioned John Cline, there are two other Clines that appear almost continuously from 1788 to 1820 and they are namely Michael and Gasper Cline. In the year 1819 there appears a second George Cline and he is identified as (of Michael) on the tax rolls. This is the George Cline who married Polly Williams on Feb 26 1818 in Shenandoah Co VA.
In 1820 the tax rolls identify the two George Clines as (son of John) and (son of Michael) to separate their identity.
George Cline (of Michael) and Polly Williams Cline left Shenandoah Co VA in 1833-1834 and went to Ohio until 1839 when they arrive in Harrison County Indiana and settle in the same township where the sons of John Cline Sr lived, John Cline Sr having died in 1835.
Charles Cline and John W Cline, sons of George and Polly Williams Cline, married Elmanda and Elizabeth Cline, daughters of Elias Cline and granddaughters of John Cline Sr. In later years, there were two additional marriages between these two Cline families. In has long been assumed that George Cline who married Polly Williams was a nephew of John Cline Sr.
This positive identification (from tax records) of Michael Cline as the father of George Cline makes it very probably that this Michael Cline is the brother of John Cline Sr. It is also possible that Gaspar Cline is also a brother to John Cline Sr since he lived in Shenandoah Co from 1788 to 1820 although no family connection exists such as was the case with descendants of George Cline and John Cline Sr.
There were several different John Cline's that appear in multiple years and are not definitely identified on the following list.
One was John Cline who married Catherine Black (Swartz) on Aug 17, 1796 and lived near the Martin Swartz land on Toms Brook. This John Cline moved to Guernsey Co Ohio in 1815 and before that had lived in Washington Co, MD so he does not appear continuously on the tax rolls.
Another John Cline was the father of Henry Cline who married Catherine Wiseman on Nov 24, 1802. This may be the John Cline who was listed as (widower) on the tax rolls in 1790 and 1791.
Compiled in September 1999 by Glenn V. Cline.
Identifying our John Cline vs other John Clines of the day is no easy task. Using tax rolls and other documents, Glenn Cline lists clues. Our John Cline was German and possibly a member of the Isaac Layman family, as well as working as a blacksmith