Elijah Craig
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Elijah Craig (abt. 1738 - 1808)

Rev. Elijah Craig
Born about in Orange, Virginia, British Colonial Americamap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married [date unknown] [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died at about age 69 in Georgetown, Scott, Kentucky, United Statesmap
Profile last modified | Created 24 Feb 2009
This page has been accessed 8,894 times.



Notables Project
Elijah Craig is Notable.

Elijah Craig was born in Orange County, near Spotsylvania, Virginia on 15 Nov 1738, the 5th child of Polly Hawkins and Taliaferro or Toliver Craig, Sr.

Converted by David Thomas in 1764, Elijah Craig soon began holding meetings in his tobacco barn.
Elijah was a Baptist preacher in Kentucky sometimes credited with developing bourbon whiskey. He has been claimed to be the first to age the distillation in charred oak casks, "a process that gives the bourbon its reddish color and unique taste", however, American whiskey authorities state that there no historical evidence indicates that Craig's whiskey was unique in its time, nor that he practiced charring of the aging barrels. An early distiller physically located in Bourbon County named Jacob Spears is credited with being the first to label his product as "bourbon whiskey". Craig's distillery, founded around 1789, was actually located in what was then Fayette County, Virginia and then Fayette County, Kentucky as Kentucky was transitioning to statehood. Some would say that true bourbon had to be made in Bourbon County only, although today it can be produced anywhere in the United States with the name bourbon (95% of bourbon still comes from Kentucky). Despite the disagreement on Craig's standing as the first bourbon producer, there is a distillery today called Heaven Hill which produces a bourbon whiskey named "Elijah Craig".
Besides being a preacher, Elijah was a businessman, developing Kentucky's first fulling mill for cloth manufacturing, first paper mill, and its first ropewalk, and the first lumber mill and grist mill in Georgetown, Scott County. He established the first classical school in Kentucky in 1787 and founded Rittenhouse Academy in 1798. He donated land for Georgetown College, the first Baptist college founded west of the Allegheny Mountains.


  • Fact: will (15 DEC 1790) Woodford, Kentucky
  • Fact: Burial (1808) Scott, Kentucky, United States
  • Fact: Occupation: minister
  • Fact: Religion: Baptist


Sometime after Elijah Craig's death in 1808, Josiah Pitts (his son-in-law) purchased land from Elijah Craig's estate in Scott County, Kentucky.
The Payne-Desha House was built on the west side of Royal Spring Branch on land originally owned by Elijah Craig. After Craig's death in 1808, General Richard Gano and Josiah Pitts purchased the property near Royal Spring Branch from Craig's estate. The Payne-Desha House is a historic house located on land west of Royal Spring Branch near downtown Georgetown, Scott County, Kentucky that was built in 1814 by Robert Payne Source.[1]


  • Kentucky, U.S., Wills and Probate Records, 1774-1989

Name: Elijah Craig Probate Date: 13 May 1808 Probate Place: Kentucky, USA Inferred Death Year: 1808 Item Description: Will Records Others Listed- Relationship(s): Elijah Craig:- Simeon Craig - Son, John D. Craig - Son, Joel Craig - Child, John Craig - Child, Lucy Craig - Child, Mary Craig - Child, John Hawkins - Child, Josiah Pitts - Child.

  • Specifically: "...my beloved wife Mary Craig... my nine children namely, John Craig, Toliver Craig, Lewis Craig, Joseph Craig, Elijah Craig, Benjamin Craig, Jeremiah Craig, Joice Faulkener, and Elizabeth Cave... make John Sanders and Sarah Singleton's part Equal with theirs in property... [2]


  1. [1]
  2. [2]
Link to copied image: [3]
  • Craig, Lillian K.. Reverend John Craig, 1709-1774 : his descendants and allied families. New Orleans, LA: Accurate Letter Company, 1963.
  • Masters, Frank M.. A History of Baptists in Kentucky. Louisville, KY: Kentucky Baptist Historical Society, 1952.
  • Howard, Virginia W.. Bryan Station Heroes and Heroines. Lexington, KY: Press of the Commercial Print Co., 1932.
  • Wulfeck, Dorothy F.. Hawkins of Virginia, the Carolinas and Kentucky: court records, queries, brief lineages, genealogical notes. Naugatuck, CN: D. F. Wulfeck, 1963.
  • Darnell, Ermina J.. Forks of Elkhorn Church. Louisville, KY: Standard Printing Co., 1946.
  • Parker, Anna V.. The Sanders Family of Grass Hills. Madison, IN: Coleman Printing Co., 1966.
Memorial Here: [4]

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DNA Connections
It may be possible to confirm family relationships with Elijah by comparing test results with other carriers of his Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA. However, there are no known yDNA test-takers in his direct paternal line. Mitochondrial DNA test-takers in the direct maternal line: It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share some percentage of DNA with Elijah:

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We are featuring this profile in the Connection Finder this week. Between now and Wednesday is a good time to take a look at the sources and biography to see if there are updates and improvements that need made, especially those that will bring it up to WikiTree Style Guide standards. We know it's short notice, so don't fret too much. Just do what you can.



posted by Abby (Brown) Glann
This Elijah Craig was not at Bryan Station, as source implies. Different Elijah Craig.
posted by L A Banta