HISTORY OF PORTSMOUTH
The Town of Porstmouth was established in 1752 on land owned by Col. William Crawford. He hired a county surveyor, Gershom Nimmo, to Divide the 65 acres of his plantation into a town called Portsmouth named after a seacoast town in England.

Portsmouth was located one the Elizabeth River the route travel and trade was carried on is that period of time. Portsmouth a seacoast town with abundance of the pine and fir trees in the area. Soon became a successful seaport. Trading and ship building brought a need for skilled carpenters, shipwrights, sail makers, ship builders and sea captains.

Beginning at the mouth of the Southern Branch, thence running westwardly on the southern boundary of crawford bay to the mouth of swimming point creek, thence southward along dinwiddie street to south street, then eastwardly along south street to the southern branch and then northwardly along the river to the beginning north of north street.

The first Market house in Portsmouth was located in themiddle of high street, between crawford and water streets. It was removed in 1835 to Glasgow street, between middle and crawford, and converted into a dwelling house.

Appointed Commissioners by an Act passed in May 1784 the following men were to sell certain public lands for the use of the people:

Joseph Jones            Paul Loyall                   William Lee                 Mann Page              Henry Tazewell

Benjamin Harrison     Thomas Nelson             Miles King                  John Kearns            

There was a section of these public lands called Gosport and in 1784 The Governor with advice from Council annexed this land to Portsmouth.

There is some political back and forth for those who are interested in it, email me page 373.

In 1789 a group of trustees were authorized to raise a sum not to exceed L400 to erect a bridge between Gosport & Portsmouth, and to sell certain lots in  Gosport for the purpose.

On Wed April 20 1796 

The trustees were

James S. Matthews              Bernard Maguien                John Mushrow                Robert Thompson

Thomas Emmerson              John Quareles                     John Brooks                   Nathaniel Peed   

William Wilson                    Robert Shelton                   William Porter                  Henry Dickinson   

Henry Dickinson was unanimously elected President for the ensuing year & Treasurer.

Andrew Kidd was appointed Clerk to be paid the sum of $20 a year.

LIST OF MEN WHO PAID TAXES IN 1798

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In 1800 the follwoing gentlemen were chosen to serve as trustees of the town for one yar.

RICHARD BLOW                    JAMES S. MATHEWS            BERNARD MAGUIEN              HENRY DICKSON
PETER HERBERT                  JOHN BROOKS                      WILLIAM KING                        JOHN FOSTER
JONATHAN DENBY               THOMAS BROOKS                 NATHANIEL ESHON              DANIEL CLEMENTS
CAPT. WILLIAM KING WAS ELECTED PRESIDENT

TIMELINE ISSUES:

1803 TRUSTEES WERE EMPOWERED TO LEASE FOR 99 YEARS RENEWABLE FOREVER A PART OF THE LOT GIVEN BY CO. WILLIAM CRAWFORD A FOR A MARKET. And they were authorized to extend the limits of the town to Chestnut Street.

1805 Trustees were empowered to lease part of the land given by Crawford for a court house, the rents to be appropriated toward paving the streets.

1811 An act of legislature was passed providing that the limit of the town were not to be extended from Effingham to Chestnut for 15 years unless the consent of the owers of the land affected could be obtained sooner.

1833 the trustees were authorized to prohibit the burial of dead person within the limits of the town and to hold land for a burying ground.

1852 Until otherwise provided the Town of Portsmouth shall for the purposes of this Act. be laid off into two wards:
1. All of Portsmouth & Gosport East of Court & 4th streets shall be called JACKSON WARD.
2. All of Portsmouth & Gosport WEST of COURT & 4TH streets shall be called JEFFERSON WARD Ward
And there shall be a separate place of voting in each ward as follows:
THE VOTING PLACE IN JACKSON WARD SHALL BE TOWN HALL
JEFFERSON WARD IT SHALL BE COURT HOUSE.

ALSO in 1852 Portsmouth was incorporated as a town.

if anyone wants the "legal" info email me, kristina frmrnyr@aol.com

Under the act of incorporating Portsmouth as a full grown town,

John S. White was the first mayor WITH MEMBERS OF COUNCIL ARE:

John L. Porter  - President
C.S. Cocke                     W.H.H. HODGES           CALVIN REYNOLDS               H. FEREBEE          W.R. WOODARD
R.A. J. THOMPSON        THOMAS MORAN           H.J. PHILLIPS                        JOHN LASH            CALEB NASH
JOHN VERMILLION         W.N. SCHOOLFIELD      WILLIAM M. LEVY AS CLERK.

GENEALOGY OF EARL OF EFFINGHAM FOLLOWS EMAIL ME IF U R INTERESTED OR RELATED KRISTINA

March 1 1858 CITY OF PORTSMOUTH IS BORN.....................

MAY 4 1858 The court of Hustings for the City of Portsmouth established by the charter held the first session at the court house of Norfolk county. Present were:
Alderman Samuel Watts          Arthur R. Smith              John Nash               William H. Morris             Moss w. Armistead
John S. White                         Robert Dickson              William W. David      Edward Kearns           


Arthur R. Smith wad designated as chairman to preside at the court.
Arthur Emmerson was appointed cryer
James Murdaugh was appointed clerk
David J. Godwin was elected COMMONWEALTH ATTORNEY with salary of $300 per. year
Claudius W. Murdaugh Leopold C.P. Cowper and Virginius O. Cassell were elected commissioners in chancery.

Qualified to Practice Law:
James Murdaugh                    John S. Stubbs               Leopold C.P. Cowper       J.M. Brickhouse       James G. Holliday
James F. Crocker                   David J. Godwin              Claudis W Murdaugh        Virginius O. Cassell
PH.H. DAUGHTERY               Abram S. Watts

Joseph Hobday commissioner of the revenue
Herman Matthews constable
David J. Godwin                      Claudius W. Murdaugh,    Abram S. Watts             John Emerson  : Notaries

George W. Grice was the first mayor elected april 1858.
Hon. Edward W. Massenburg was the first JUDGE.

1873 THE WARDS WERE CHANGED too much to list here.


St. Bride's got a new church in 1762. it stood at the southwest corner of state routes 170 and 614. It is said to be probably that the Great Bridge Chapel, served as a parish church until the new church was completed and then continued in use as a chapel of  this parish.
It is unlikely that either church or chapel was used for worship after the revolution, though they were not dismantled until sometime later 1853 / 1854. The present St. Bride's Episcopal church in Berkley represents a modern revival of the old name in 1923 by the union of st. paul's, Berkley 1867 and st. thomas 1886. the present building was erected in 1911.

In 1803 Elder Dempsey casey became pastor and a prominent lay leader was james grimes. the membership was then 52.

 
St. Brides Parish ( A list of People who died within the parish between June 1, 1849 & May 30th 1850)