Figure of the Week

Taylor Chapman

Born c.1712 - Died 1750

Taylor Chapman (c.1712-1750) was the son of Jonathan Chapman (died before 1749) and Jane Taylor and the grandson of Nathaniel Chapman (1709-1760) who had been manager of Accokeek Iron Works in Stafford.  Nathaniel owned land in Charles County, Maryland as well as in Stafford, Fauquier, and Fairfax Counties.  Nathaniel’s home plantation in Maryland was directly across the Potomac River from Mount Vernon and the Chapman and Washington families were dear friends.  George Washington’s father, Augustine Washington (1694-1743), was a shareholder in Accokeek’s parent company and he and Nathaniel Chapman were both actively involved in the day-to-day iron making operations there.  In 1739 Taylor Chapman married Margaret Markham in Stafford.  From at least 1748-1750 he served as a tobacco inspector at the Aquia Warehouse.  This facility was located in the little village of Aquia, later known as Woodstock and the site is now part of Aquia Harbour subdivision.  The Chapman family’s Stafford land, located on Chappawamsic Run, passed down from Jonathan to Taylor and from him to Thomas Chapman (1769-1827).  The Chapman family had a long association with milling and they seem to have been operating a large mill on this tract early on.  This land and its mill eventually ended up in the hands of the Tolson family and well before 1848 was known as Bellfair Mills.