Jonathan Osborne
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Jonathan Osborne (abt. 1697 - abt. 1761)

Jonathan [uncertain] Osborne
Born about in Warwickshire, Englandmap [uncertain]
Brother of [half], [half], [half] and [half]
Husband of — married 1 Jul 1723 (to 1761) in Williamsburg, James City County, Virginiamap
Descendants descendants
Died about in James City, Williamsburg, Virginiamap [uncertain]
Profile last modified | Created 15 Jan 2011
This page has been accessed 5,248 times.
US Southern Colonies.
Jonathan Osborne resided in the Southern Colonies in North America before 1776.
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Research suggests that this person may never have existed. See the text for details.
This profile lacks source information. Please add sources that support the facts.



Jonathan Osborne was born in 1697 in Warwickshire, England, the fourth of five known children and the fourth of four sons of James and Anne Carter Osborne.
On 1 July 1723, when he was in his later twenties, he married Gretta Hollman. She bore him nine known children, seven sons and two daughters:
  1. Stephen Osborne
  2. Johannah Osborne
  3. Josiah Osborne
  4. Solomon Osborne
  5. George Osborne
  6. Jeremiah Osborne
  7. Jonathan Osborne
  8. Nancy Osborne
  9. Ephraim Osborne.
On 6 October 1761, when he was in his mid-sixties, he died of unknown causes in Williamsburg, Virginia.

Uncertain Work Done for Will Daniel

Apparently, Will Daniel, an attorney of Huntington, West Virginia, hired a professional genealogist to discover the ancestry of Enoch Osborne. Enoch is said to be the son of Jonathan Osborne and Greta Hollman of Williamsburg, James City County, Virginia. The problem is that Osborne family researcher, William Boyd, searched for many years for the source of Will Daniel's information and could find nothing.[1] Meanwhile, the information has disseminated throughout published works and the internet, citing the research of Will Daniel (if there is citation). Caution must be used, as Boyd states that "no supportable conclusion can be reached as to their validity." Further, Boyd could find no records supporting the existence of the James Osborne who is said to have married Ann Carter.(Billups-130 16:18, 18 January 2015 (EST))

Jonathan is said to have been born c. 1697 at Warwickshire, England, the son of James Osborne and Ann Carter.[1] This birth date is a guess, based on the 1720 immigration date.
The Birth Date is a rough estimate. See the text for details.

The Story

Jonathan Osborn is said to have immigrated to Virginia c, 1720 and to have married c, 1722 in James City, Jamestown, Virginia to Greta Hollman/Holman, said to be born c. 1701 at Williamsburg, James City County, Virginia, and to have died in 1796 at Montgomery County, Virginia.[1] Jonathan is said to have died October 6, 1761 at James City, Williamsburg, Virginia, aged 62-63. This information is often repeated, however no documents or evidence have ever been found.

From the book: The Hannah Family of West Virginia, Chapter 31 "The Osborne Family"

A recent book entitled Osborne Family History by Judy Kelley, 1995, relates some of the earlier history and activities of the Osbornes, but we have not verified any of the records related in the book. This book states that the name is an old English one, predating the Norman conquest of England in 1066. However, there is also a Norman name, Osbern. There are many other variations of spelling such as Osbourn(e), Osburn, Osband, etc. Our connection to the Osborne family comes from the marriage of Aritta Osborne to Richard F. Woolsey in Pulaski County. Although Aritta was no doubt born in western Virginia where the Osborne family had lived since the late 1700s, it is in Pulaski County, Kentucky where she met and married Richard Woolsey. Wood Osborne, father of Aritta, first shows as a taxpayer in Pulaski County in 1847 when he paid taxes on property on Pittman Creek, a short distance from the Clifty Creek home of the Woolsey family. The marriage two years later of Aritta and Richard F. produced several children including Nancy Jane Woolsey who married Joseph Hannah (see chapter 8). According to Kelley's book, Osborne Family History, our American Osborne family can be traced back to James Osborn, born about 1674 in England. He married Anne Carter and they lived in Warwickshire. James and his son, Jonathon, born 28 March 1697, are said to have come to America, date not given. Jonathon married Gretta Holman at James City, Virginia in about 1721. Their offspring included Ephraim, born August 21, 1723 at James City, Virginia. During the next several generations the Osborne families moved westward. Various families lived in Rowan, Yadkin, and Surrey counties in North Carolina. Then some moved into the western parts of Virginia to Montgomery County and on west to Grayson and Scott counties. Ephraim, son of Jonathon and Gretta, married Elizabeth Howard and they had Solomon, a name that occurs many times in the records of the Osborne family. This Solomon married Nancy Davidson and they had James. Solomon was killed by Indians while on a hunting trip (see below) before his son, James was born. The widow Nancy then married Jonathon Wood, and when James had a son, he named him Wood Osborne to honor his stepfather, Jonathon Wood. Wood Osborne married Catherine Livingston (see below) and they had a daughter, Aritta, who, as we learned earlier, gave birth to Nancy Jane Woolsey. Thus we have the complete lineage from 1674 to the present according to Osborne Family History by Kelley. The death of Solomon Osborne about 1764 at only age 22 years is related in the book Early Osbornes and Alleys by Rita Sutton as follows: Enoch Osborn and brothers, Solomon and Ephraim, went into what is now Watauga Co., N. C. on a hunting trip, deer being plentiful in that section. Getting wet by a shower of rain and wet bushes, they struck camp for the night and lay down to sleep, hanging their clothes by the fire to dry. The Indians surprised them by shooting into camp, and killing Solomon Osborn. An Indian chased Enoch some distance and lost him in the darkness. Ephraim, after fleeing from camp, crept back in the darkness to his horse, which had been fastened with a hickory bark halter, to a tree, loosed him and rode home. Enoch returned home without shoes and in his night clothing.


For an enlargeable view of the biographical sketch below, click here.

Biographical sketch of Jonathan Osborne
"According to unverified information from Mrs. H. R. Saffell and Maud Bliss's "My Father's People" the parents of Ephraim Osborne are Jonathan Osborne and Gretta Hclman. He [Jonathan] was christened 27 Mar. 1697-8 in Warwick, England; came to King & Queen Co., Va. 1720, sailing on the ship James Goodwill with David Crockett, Master, from Rotterdam, last port Falmouth; landed in James River Settlement 27 Oct. 1720. He was a member of Colonial Assembly of Va. 1741-2, and a member of King's Royal Guards in New York and Port Royal 1745 & 6. His wife, whom he married at Williamsburg, Va. ca. 1720 was born ca. 1697."[2]



  • Elizabeth Turner imported the data for Jonathan Osborne (1697-abt.1761) from Turner_2011-01-14.ged on 15 Jan 2011.

Jonathan was born about 1697. Jonathan Osborne ... He passed away about 1797.[3]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Boyd, William R., The Descendants and Ancestors of James Boyd and Nancy Wier Osborne & Robinette Columbus, Georgia: Quill Publication, 1991, Web. accessed October 12, 2015
  2. "Jonathan Osborne," URL: Accessed 17 Mar 2019.
  3. A source for this information is needed.
  • Thank you to William R. Boyd for your excellent research on this troubling fabrication, and thank you to the Internet Archive Wayback Machine for preserving our ethereal internet!
  • First-hand information as remembered by Keith Osborne, Saturday, September 13, 2014.

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Comments: 12

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Osborne-5102 and Osborne-159 appear to represent the same person because: These two are duplicated profiles. Please merge. Dates, family, locations, are all the same. If rejecting merge, please explain why they should not be merged.
posted by Karen (Rollet) Lorenz
Osborne-5102 and Osborne-159 do not represent the same person because: Look at the mothers. These are not the same person. Merge ONLY when you are certain... when you have PROOF
posted by Jeanie (Doran) Bond
Osborne-5102 and Osborne-159 appear to represent the same person because: same name, data and family. Only need one profile per person on WikiTree
posted by Patricia Roche
Information I found on Jonathan Osborne and his wife, Gretta holman Osborne (1701-1796) but doesn't show/list a gravestone. Also, has James Charles Osborne (1672-1716) and Mary Ann Jane Carter (1675-1715) as Jonathan Osborne's Parents. Doesn't have any children listed. Source:
posted by Jennifer Holland
The Williamsburg Osbornes and the New Jersey/Grayson County VA Osbornes are not the same family and should not be merged. The fact that some of the VA and KY Osbornes names are the same is an error in merging. See Biography note at left.
posted by Jeanie (Doran) Bond
Osborne-2182 and Osborne-159 do not represent the same person because: Not enough information to merge. Osborne is pretty much a blank profile, so not able to compare. Shows close ages, but still seven years apart, and, one shows born in England, and one in New Jersey. I just do not feel comfortable merging these profiles.
posted by Anne Baker
Osborne-2182 and Osborne-159 appear to represent the same person because: These are the same person.
posted by Sherri (Runkles) Posey
I have been doing a bit of searching on this line. I have found in a book 'The Hannah Family of West Virginia' a section on the Osborne Family. It also references some other books. I am looking into this. I have included an excerpt from the book to the left under Family.
posted by Anne Baker
Anne, good points, and in fact, question has come up as to the very existence of this person (see Boyd). Seems the person often given as a son, Ephraim Osborne did exist, but the rest ...

Anyone know of any actual documentation? or any sources which mention any records (and not just other unsourced groups sheets or trees?)

posted by Cynthia (Billups) B
Osborne-2182 and Osborne-159 do not represent the same person because: Born 8 years apart, one in England and one in New Jersey. Also, one shows no parents, spouse or children... all listed as unknown. Unable to merge at this time!
posted by Anne Baker
Regarding the proposed merge of Osborne 2182 and 159, they show born 8 years apart, and one shows born in England, one in New Jersey. 2182 has no known parents, spouse or children! I do not believe these two profiles should be merged with all these discrepancies.
posted by Anne Baker
Osborne-2875 and Osborne-159 appear to represent the same person because: Same names, birth years, same spouses, same children, same estimated death dates. Please merge. Thanks
posted by Cheyenne Boggioni