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Mary Ann Rainwater Perry

Delaney Ann Miller  married Burrell Perry Henley in 1852
in Hancock county,Mississippi. His parents,  Mary Ann 
Perry and Jeremiah Henley married February 13, 1813 at 
Henleyfield, Hancock, Ms. Jeremiah was born 1775 in Orange 
county, North Carolina and Mary Ann in about 1790.
She is the daughter of Burrell Perry and Mary Ann Rainwater.

Mary Ann Rainwater Perry has proven to be quite an enigma. No record has been found documenting her marriage or parentage. She is enumerated in the 1850 Hancock county, Mississippi census in her daughter’s household, Rebecca and James Wood McGeehee. From this census her birthdate and place are estimated as about 1768 in North Carolina. The 1860 Hancock county census is missing and prior to 1850 only the head of household was enumerated by name; hence, we can not track her any more precisely in the censuses.

Very little is known of her life except that she apparently accompanied her husband from North Carolina through Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi and Louisiana during the late 1790s and early 1800s. Whether she accompanied him to Texas in the early 1830s or not is unknown for certain. Whether she did or remained in Louisiana and Mississippi these things are known:

    1) Mary Ann was alive in 1850 in Mississippi. 2) Burrell Perry was married to Jane Batts in Texas in 1838.
Thus, we know that Mary Ann and Burrell parted from each other in the 1830s.

Even less is known about her parentage but it is considered that she may be a daughter of James Rainwater of Surry county, North Carolina and his wife Ann Regan. Dates, locations and family names are similar; however, there is no proof verifying this. Further, records indicate that she is not the daughter of his brothers, John and William Rainwater. ( They are the sons of John Rainwater and Mary Fussell who married June 24, 1735 in Bertie county North Carolina. Both are from New Kent county Virginia.) (" Descendants Of John Rainwater [1695-1777] And His Wife, Mary Fussell [1708-@1782]", by Donald S. Webber, states that James Rainwater had two unnamed daughters which would fit Mary Ann. Patsy Rainwater could be the other daughter.)

The commonality of Rainwater given names of John, James, William, Mary Ann,etc. cause even more confusion in sorting through the numerous families and attempting to place her in any of them. Perhaps, the best clue we have in ascertaining her correct family is her association with Newsome and Edward Rainwater who must surely be kinsmen to her as they consistently accompany her and Burrell Perry on their trek through history and the American South.

These are facts relating to them:

    1) Newsome Rainwater was born about 1777 in Johnston Co,NC 2) The Jackson county Georgia tax lists enumerate Wm. Rainwater and Newsome Rainwater in 1799 and 1801 in Aaron Wood's district. ( Index to Tax of Georgia Tax Digest, Vol. 1, 1785 -1797 ) ( I think this is the older William (Sr.) who deserted in 1813 in Kentucky. I also think he is the father of Edward and William and a brother of Newsom. The William ( see 37 below ) listed in Warrants from Kentucky settled in Tuscaloosa and Marengo Co.Ala [ by Glidie R. Mobley ] ) Newsome Rainwater and Richardson Perry in 1804; 3) The Mississippi Territory census enumerates Burrell Perry, Richard Rainwater, and Jesse Rainwater in Washington county 1805; Richard Rainwater and Jesse Rainwater in Clark county 1810 and 1811. In 1816 Jesse Rainwater was in Washington county; Richard Rainwater in Clarke county; and, Burrell Perry in Hancock county, Ms. ( The Mississippi Territory comprised the area of present day Alabama and Mississippi with Washington county stretching from Mississippi all the way to the Chatahochee River on the Georgia/Alabama border.) 4) Washington county Mississippi tax lists enumerate Burwell Perry and Jesse Rainwater in 1805 ( free Male over 21); Jesse Rainwater with 1 poll tax in 1807 and he and Burwell Perry each had 1 poll tax in 1808; Jesse Rainwater, Richard Rainwater, Samuel Perry and Nathan Perry in 1810; 5) Washington parish, La Bk. A-1, p 54, Burrell Perry sold a slave in 1813; p361, Newsome Rainwater sold firm of (Samuel) Ott and (Griffin) Revell the patent to 160 acres, bearing date of 1809 with patent granted John Patterson; patent granted Newsome Rainwater #19609 SW 1/4 Section 21 Township 55N Range 20W; patent granted Edward Rainwater #19610; patent granted William Rainwater # 19611; all being in the tract appropriated by Congress for military bounties in the Territory of Missouri. Newsome enlisted in Rhea Co.,Tn on 18 Jul 1813. 6) In 1819 in Washington parish, Louisiana Burrell Perry, Newsome Rainwater, and Edward Rainwater shared land together. (Washington Parish Deed Bk.1, p457: Section 49 Township 4S Range 13E District of Greensburg 641 50/100 acres claim of Burwell Perry under Newsome Rainwater C & S 1819 Nos. 121 - 717 with part of this section located in Greensburg District St. Tammany parish, La.) ( Newsom (Nuesom) Rainwater in Washington Co., La- T4S, R13E, S49 listed as a military warrant, so it's possible he drew his bounty land there as the warrant could not be sold or transferred to someone else. It was for 160 acres. ) St. Tammany and Washington parishes are just across the Pearl River and adjacent to Hancock county Mississippi. 7) The Alphabetical Index of Missouri Patentees BLWTs-War of 1812 (GS# 0983163-pg 154) lists: Edmund Rainwater -Warrant # 19610 ( On the actual warrant it is Edward,though ) NW 10 55 27 John Rainwater-Warrant # 19607- NW 35 55 21 ( He was with Hunters Inf.) Newsom Rainwater-Warrant # 19609 SW 21 55 21 William Rainwater-Warrant # 19611 NE 13 54 20 Edward,Newsom and William were with Allens 7th Inf (according to the warrants.) All were registered on 7 June 1819. All three were discharged at Pass Christian, Ms. Newsome was Newton on the printed lists from "Report of the Adjutant General of the State of Kentucky" Vol. 1 pg 339" where it lists: Wm Rainwater, Sr, Pvt enlisted 1 Jan 1814 for service till 30 Jun 1814. This William deserted on 20 Jan. Newton,Edward and William,Jr enlisted for the same term in Capt William McClellan's Co 7th Reg't US Inf. McClellan's company was based in Pulaski Co., KY. Also, neither Edward or Newton appear in the 1810 or 1820 Kentucky census. I know they are not sons of William Rainwater, and wonder if they might be the sons of the mysterious Abraham Rainwater who lived in Pulaski and Russell counties, but he either died with no will, or left Kentucky before 1840. [ by Glidie R. Mobley ] On Newsom's BLWT he states he was bn in Johnston Co, NC and he was age 38 at the time of his discharge at Pass Christian, Ms on 1 Aug 1815. He enlisted in Rhea Co.,Tn on 18 Jul 1813. ( Must have been an extension of his 1st enlistment ). 8)22 May 1819, St. Tammany Parish, Marriage Originals: "I did this day join in the bonds of marriage Davis McCoy and Amelia Williams. Uriah Smith, Justice. Witnesses: Nusom Rainwater, his X; Francis Smith, her X; and Marthy Rainwater, her X" 12 Jun 1816, St. Tammany Parish, Marriage Book 1, p. 25: License granted to Abraham Wilson and Mary Rainwater, both of this parish, on application of N. Rainwater. And #267 for William Waskom to Martha Rainwater on 30 Nov 1826.

Any information anyone may have on these Rainwaters will be gratefully appreciated. However tantalizing the clues and similarities may be, the fact remains that Mary Ann is not yet placed in the proper family. One must also contemplate that when she married Burrell Perry she may have been a Rainwater widow. It should at least be considered.


Glidie R. Mobley Dan Megehee Leila Mayberry