Jeremiah Meek

of Westmoreland Co., PA

By Christopher A. Meek

1. Jeremiah Meeks resided in Westmoreland Co., PA. He is not listed in 1773, 1781 or 1783 tax records from the area. However, he is placed in Westmoreland County through deed and probate records. His property was located in the immediate vicinity of Joshua Meeks, John Meek and Jeremiah Meek Jr. It is assumed that these men were his sons. A DNA test from a descendant of Jeremiah's son Joshua proves that Jeremiah was related to the brothers Basil, John and Jacob Meek who lived in Allegheny Co., PA at the same time as Jeremiah lived in Westmoreland County.

Westmoreland County early deed records

929.166 Westmoreland Co., PA, Deeds, Vol I
58: John Meek of Bedford Co, PA, Mt Pleasant TS, for L95 sold to Hugh Neilly, of same, and improvement in Mt. Pleasant bounding Joshua Meeks, Jeremiah Meek, Samuel Newell and David White, 10 Jun 1772. Witness, Adam Hatfiekd, Ralph Cherry. Recorded 17 Jan 1792.

59: Jeremiah Meek Junr of Westmoreland Co for L60 sold to Hugh Neeley of same a certain improvement in Mt. Pleasant bounding Joshua Meeks old line, being his last line, which he ran known by Jeremiah Meeks Sr conditional line concluding 318 A, 8 Oct 1776. Witness, John Manners, Guy Yearian: proved 1 Jan 1792, recorded 14 Jan 1792.

By 1783 Westmoreland County had been subdivided into the counties of Westmoreland, Washington, Fayette and Greene. Court records indicate that a person named Jeremiah Meeks had recently died.

Jeremiah Meeks in Westmoreland County Administration Abstracts, 1783-1784 listed as follows:
JEREMIAH MEEKS. Letters granted 22 Oct. 1783 to Ralph CHERRY. Bond. (pounds) 100 Sureties: John MEASON and Andrew (x) HOBACH. Witnesses Thomas KINCAID and William FRENCH.

The actual court record:

OLD WESTMORELAND, Vol III Num1, August 1982, P. 18
Jeremiah Meeks   Memorandum - that on the twenty second 
Deceased             day of October in the year of our Lord. One 
                              thousand Seven hundred and Eighty three. Letters of 
         Administration of all and Singular the Goods and Chattels. Rights 
         and credits, which were of Jeremiah Meeks, late of Westmoreland 
         County Deceased, were granted to Ralph Cherry, the said Administrator  
         is to make a true and perfect Inventory of all the Personal  
         Estate of the said Deceased, and file the same in the Registers 
         Office, at or before the twenty second day of November next and is 
         to make a true and just accompt calculation and Reckoning of his 
         said Administration, on or before the twenty second day of October                 
         next. Ensuing the State hereof.

It is highly probably that the Jeremiah Meeks who died in 1783 was the father of Anne Meeks who married Ralph Cherry, the administrator of Jeremiah’s estate. Jeremiah’s son Joshua Meek was closely associated with the Cherry family going back to Berkeley Co., WV and continuing to Fairfield Co., OH.

Even before DNA testing established a connection between the families in Allegheny and Westmoreland Counties Pennsylvania it was believed that Jeremiah settled first in Allegheny County. A person named Jeremiah Meek sold land next to Jacob Meek in Allegheny County in 1779.

Washington Co., PA deed book 1-A-259 dated 5-1-1779: Jeremiah Meek of Yohogania Co., VA for 900 lbs. Sells to Alex McCandles, Sr. and Alex, Jr. a tract of the above Co., on the waters of Montour Run adjoining, Jacob Meek, on North, containing 400 acres

It is believed but not proven that this Jeremiah Meeks was the same person who died in Westmoreland County in 1783. It is not known if he lived on this land. Tax records for the period 1774 to 1780 have not been found and Jeremiah did not apply for a Virginia land grant. The date the land was sold is consistent with the period between 1777 and 1781 when residents were known to be leaving the area due to problems with the Indians. It was also a period where governmental offices were being established and people were obtaining clear title to their land. Yohogania Co., VA was established in 1776 and the boundary dispute between Pennsylvania and Virginia was coming to a conclusion.

In the same deed The McCandlesses assigned the land to Joseph Smith. Smith sells the land to Joseph Patterson. The property of Jacob Meek and Joseph Patterson are recorded in the Heinz History Warrantee Atlas of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, 1914. These plots were in Findley Township. In the immediate vicinity were Jacob's brother, John Meek born 1754, and Joshua Meek born 1731. Their land was located in Moon Township. Findley township adjoined Moon Township.

Other men named Meek living in Westmoreland County at that time were:

1783 Westmoreland Co., PA Tax List
Ralph Cherry----MTP
Meek, John------MTP
Meeks, Jacob----TYR

It is unclear who Jacob Meeks of Tyrone TWP was or which family he belonged to. There was an Isaac Meek in the 1773 tax list of Tyrone TWP. This Isaac is thought to be one of the progenitors of the Meek families on SW PA and Ohio.

Washington County

Pennsylvania Archives Sixth Series:
Washington County Muster Rolls; Associators and Militia
April 22nd 1782, 1st Battalion
Class Roll of Capt. Andrew Farley's Company C
1st Class: Jacob Meek
6th Class: Isaac Meek
7th Class: Jeremiah Meek
8th Class: Nathan Meek

We cannot be certain which Jeremiah Meek this record refers to. However, all of these names are found in the 1783 tax list for Washington County. The Jacob Meek referred to above may not refer to Jacob Meek in the deed record as there was another Jacob Meek listed in the tax list. The tax list does indicate that a man named Jeremiah Meek lived in Washington County.

1783 Tax List for Bethlehem Twp., Washington Co., PA

Isaac Meek, no land, 1 horse, 1 cow, value 8 Pounds
Jacob Meeks (sic), no land, 1 horse, one cow, value 8 Pounds
Jacob Meeks (sic), no land, 1 horse, value 5 Pounds
(One of these men was the son of Samuel Meek)

The 1783 Tax List for Morgan Twp., Washington Co., PA

Nathan Meek 400A, 3H, 3C, $70
Jeremiah Meek 4H, 3C, $30

Jeremiah Meek from Washington County was not in the 1790 census and probably moved to Kentucky or other parts unknown. Nathan Meek and Basil Meek migrated to Pulaski Co., KY. Nathan's name first appeared in Kentucky tax records in 1799. In 1802 he paid taxes on land originally granted to Jeremiah Meek. The 1801-1804 tax lists for Pulaski Co., KY lists Jeremiah Meek, Jeremiah Meek Jr., and Jacob Meek. These men were not part of Nathan's family. It is impossible to determine if any of these men came from Washington Co., PA.


There were clearly two men named Jeremiah Meek(s) in SW Pennsylvania before 1783. Westmoreland County deed records show a close relationship between Jeremiah Sn., Jeremiah Jr., Joshua and John. Joshua is thought to be the same person who registered slaves in Nottingham TWP, Washington County in 1783. Jeremiah Jr. may be the person in the 1783 tax list of Morgan TWP, Washington County.

Early books such as those by H. B. Meek and Carleton Meek were not based on documented sources and apparently combined facts concerning more than one person. This can be demonstrated by the reference to Jeremiah moving to Tennessee. Clearly these authors were referring to the Jeremiah Meeks who died in Westmoreland County in 1783. So it is unlikely that he could have been in Tennessee although there was a person named Jeremiah Meek in E. Tennessee about this same time.

It is not known what happened to the Jeremiah in the 1783 tax list. He may have migrated to Kentucky with other men from SW Pensylvania. The only thing known about him is that he was probably older than 18 in 1783.

Both of the men named Jeremiah likely had families and may be the progenitors of many people. It is important to continue the seach for more factual information about all of the men from SW Pennsylavania so we can eventually understand the connection between them and their descendants..

Contact Dan Meeks for more information on Jeremiah Meeks and the Cherry family.