Reverend Moses Sanders was born 1742 in England, United Kingdom to John Sanders (1707-1790) and Barbara Jones (1722-) and died 29 March 1817 Groves Lever, Franklin County, Georgia, United States of unspecified causes. He married Mary Hamilton (1745-1818) .


In researching the family history for Reverend Moses Sanders, note that several articles generated by his great grandson, C.C. Sanders in the early 1900's erroneously lists some key facts such as place of birth and his wife's name.

Early Years in Virginia

Contrary to previous histories, there is no record of Moses Sanders ever having been born in or departing from England for America. One record claims he came from Downton, Westshire, England, but there is no such Westshire county. The closest match is Downtown, Wiltshire England, but a search of their records for 1732 and 1742 turns up empty.

It is probably that Moses Sanders originated from Virginia. This originates from the 1850 US Federal Census, where his oldest son, Aaron Sanders (1769-1854) states his birth as Virginia, 1769. (1850 US Census, 3rd District of Franklin County, Georgia.) This date is set two years prior to the family appearing in 1771 North Carolina land grant records.

North Carolina Land Grants

The earliest known record of Moses Sanders are a series of land grants made to him between 1771 and 1775, recorded in North Carolina. They reference upto 640 acres for a plantation in Anson County, located northeast of Peedee and Abners Creek. The Pee Dee River runs along the north border of modern day Anson County, northeast of the towns of Ansonville and Wadesboro.

Various court records in this time and vicinity mentions Moses Sanders with instructions for building a road, serving as constable and a juror, and for selling his parts of his plantation property.

Of note is a 13 Jul 1774 court order to certain hands to construct a road from Beaver Dam Creek to Rocky Creek, mentioning several close family members, Moses Sanders, Aaron Sanders, William Hamilton (brother-in-law?) and many others.

The name Aaron Sanders appears quite frequently in various North Carolina Land Grant and Court Records for Anson County in the early 1770's. It is believed that he is either a father or brother to Moses and also appears to be the namesake for his firstborn son. Of note is a 1782 estate record for a recently deceased Aaron Sanders for a transaction in Montgomery County, a recent division of Anson County land on the north side of the Pee Dee River. Unfortunately all early court records for that area were lost in a courthouse fire.

Starting in 1782, Moses Sanders appears a number court records and tax lists for Rowan County, North Carolina. In 1788, Moses Sanders took a seat as Justice of the Peace for Rowan County. Later in 1788, Rowan County was split to create Iredell County, and now his name shows on the court records for this county in his new roll as justice.

Moses Sanders, Aaron Sanders and Jacob Sanders all of households listed in the 1790 US Federal Census for the Salisbury District of Iredell County, NC.

5 Nov 1791 is the last mention of Moses Sanders in Iredell County when he sells 200 acres of his property to Christopher Houston for 100 pounds.


Although C.C. Sanders declared that Moses was married to Sarah or Sallie Hamilton, it appears that his wife's actual name was Mary Hambleton (Hamilton?). William Hamilton's name appears several times on Land Grants and Court Orders adjacent to that of Moses in Anson County and it is strongly believed that this is his wife's brother. By 1813, this William Hamilton has moved to Bedford, Tennessee when he purchases property there.

Homer Cemetery Tombstones

Tombstone / Epitaph for Rev. Moses Sanders

The records of Grove Level Baptist Church in Maysville, GA records his death date of 29 Mary 1817. There is also a will dated 28 Feb 1817.

Tombstone epitaph (located in a private Sanders Cemetery near Homer, Banks Co, Georgia) reads: "Rev. Moses Sanders, Born in England 1742, Died 1817. Founder of Grove Level, Nails Creek and many other Baptist Churches. A soldier of the Revolutionary War. The Cross of Jesus Christ My Anchor."

The Sanders Cemetery in Homer, GA has a tombstone for his wife, Sarah Hamilton (1745-1783) that reads: "Sallie Hamilton, Wife of Rev. Moses Sanders. A native of Virginia born 1745. Died 1816. She died as she lived, A Christian."

Research has failed to confirm his birth in England or military service in the Revolutionary War. He was serving as Justice of the Peace in Iredell County during the war. His wife was Mary Hambleton and she survived him and is mentioned in his will of 1817.

Both headstones were possibly installed 85 years after the death of Moses Sanders by a great grandson, Christopher Columbus Sanders (1838-1908), at the same time he had commemorative markers placed at the Line & Grove Level Baptist Churches in1902 on the 100th of its founding. Col. C.C. Sanders wrote an article with similar information in Men of Mark in Georgia, Vol IV in 1908.

Latter Years And Death

Grove Level Baptist Church - Centennial Commemorative 1902 Plaque

The records of Grove Level Baptist Church in Maysville, GA records his death date of 29 Mary 1817. At the time of his death, Maysville was part of Franklin County, but today it is in Banks County.

Grove Level Baptist Church

In May 1802, the members of the Nails Creek Church met together at the "Grove Level Meetinghouse" and appointed Br. Moses Sanders as their senior minister.


A great number of Rev Sanders children and grand children fought and died in the American Civil War fighting under the flag of Georgia. Quite a number of his posterity were active in the Grove Level Baptist Church for many generations.

Grove Lebel Baptist Church - Maysville GA (2014)

Today Grove Level Baptist Church is found in Maysville, GA of Banks County. 1702 Grove Level Rd. Maysville GA, 30558; Grove Level Church - (but don't confuse this with the church of same name in nearby Dalton, GA.)


Offspring of Reverend Moses Sanders and Mary Hamilton (1745-1818)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Aaron Sanders (1769-1854) 1769 Virginia, United States 17 August 1854 Unknown (-1817) Unknown (-1817) Morning Thompson (1795-1885)
Moses Sanders (1771-1847) 1771 North Carolina, United States 12 January 1847 Franklin County, Georgia, United States Mary Elizabeth Harris (1766-1845)
Sarah Sanders (1773-1862) 15 May 1773 North Carolina, United States 19 November 1862 Bedford, Tennessee, United States Obadiah Hooper (1751-1817)
David Sanders (1775-1815) 1775 Iredell County, North Carolina 11 January 1815 Bedford County, Tennessee Mary Allred (1783-1820)
Jones Sanders (1777-) 1777 Augusta, Richmond County, Georgia, United States
Nancy Sanders (1778-) 1778 Anson, Iredell County, North Carolina 1807 Richard Tyler Mauldin (1760-1860)
Joel Sanders (1779-) 1779 Augusta, Richmond County, Georgia, United States Easter Burnett (1780-)
Amos Sanders (1783-) 1783 Anson, Iredell County, North Carolina Barshaba Pendergrass (1783-1850)


Vital Records

1790 US Federal Census

Salisbury District of Iredell County, North Carolina:

  • Moses Sanders Family - 4 males under 16, 4 females and 5 slaves.
  • Aron Sanders Family - 1 male under 16, 1 female.
  • Jacob Sanders Family - 2 males under 16, 2 females.

1850 US Federal Census

Census for 3rd District of Franklin County, Georgia - Household #1542 - Aaron Sanders (1769-1854) is the oldest son of Rev. Moses Sanders, and this declaration places his parents in Virginia about two years before they show on North Carolina Land Grant Records. This serves as the most diffinitive documentation of the origins of Moses Sanders.

  • Aaron Sanders M/81 - Ocp: Farmer - Birthplace: Virginia (1769)
  • Mourning Sanders F/55 - Birthplace: So Carolina
  • Jesse Y Sanders M/21 - Birthplace: Georgia
  • Lucinda Sanders F/15 - Birthplace: Georgia
  • Caroline Sanders F/14 - Birthplace: Georgia
  • Matthew Sanders M/14 - Birthplace: Georgia

Early Virginia Records Search

From The Library of Virginia - Colonial, Land, Bible Records, etc. (Posted by Mike Sanders on the Sanders Message Board on 1 Jul 2007)



Footnotes (including sources)


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