ARTHUR SELLERS, Jr. b.~1760 d. 12Jan1844
A professional genealogist, Jonathan Butcher, researched Gurley and the Nash Co. Sellers through Nash records and Church records. His findings suggest that the reference to Arntil in the Sellers Letters was likely a corruption of the name Arthur. In fact, Artair is the Scottish version of Arthur <http://www.behindthename.com/nmc/sco.php> so perhaps Artair was corrupted to Arntil. In any event, I have not seen any mention of either of these names in any records while Arthur, Jr. is recorded several times in Nash records. The Primitive Baptist Church maintained its history and lists both Arthur, Jr. and his wife Mary as members which the Sellers Letters stated. They were not always in good standing. In fact, Arthur, Jr. was excommunicated at one point. His name appears as Arther on occasion. Church records also show that this Arthur, Jr. and later, his wife Mary were both buried as paupers. It's not clear if Arthur, Jr. came from Ireland/Scotland (as Artair/Arntil) or if he could also have descended from William Sellers of Isle of Wight, Va 1657. If he were the son of Arthur, Sr., the latter is possible and I think could be proven. Descendents in this chain from William married women with the Gurley surname on a couple of occasions which would give credibility to Gurley as a given name.
I am also baffled by the 1984 Sellers Letters where the editor Mary Simms says that Charles A. Sellers "gave" her this record. I researched the 1900-1930 censuses for Charles A. Sellers who was the son of Richard and who was president of a linen supply co. and found him in 1920 & 1930. He was born in 1868 so would have been 116 years old in 1984. So unless he gave this to her years before, it had to be a much later relative of Charles that passed her the record.
If this information came from Charles Sellers direct (or through his documents) it should have some authority since he probably had first hand information from his grandfather (Jordan Sellers) who would have been Arthur's son. Also, Gurley’s descendents who remain in the Birmingham/Bessemer area were handed down the story that the family came from Ireland around the Rev. War time. This could be the same information that Charles Sellers was told.
But, I have also struggled with Gurley and his siblings leaving their parents to die as paupers. Granted, Gurley was in AL at the time, two of his brothers were in S.C. but Jordan and a couple of sisters were still in N.C. during this latter period of Arthur and Mary’s lives. Perhaps they had all lost touch with each other and communication was extremely difficult in those days and times were very hard. It's also been noted that none of the descendents named a child Arthur but guess the same can be said for the other Nash Co. Sellers candidates.
Here's some other records on Arthur Sellers, Jr.:
17 May 1790 Buys 100 acres from Wm. Sellers
17 May 1800 Sells same land to John Bissett
30 Oct. 1801 Buys 50 acres on Sapony Creek from John Sellers
Nov 1802 Deed of sale from John Sellers to Arthur, Jr.
May 1804 Fine on record "Office vs Arthur, Jr. and Jordan Sherrod"
Church records: 1829-1844 - dies a pauper 12 Jan. 1844
My age assumptions:
> 16 in 1790 Census with 2 children who are <16
26 to 44 in 1800 Census with 5 children
Conclusion = born not later than 1774 and no earlier than 1756. He has children in 1890 and if Charles Sellers letter is correct & he was a scout during the Rev. War 1775-1783, he would more likely have been born closer to the 1856 time period.
1790 Census shows he and his wife and 1 male under 16 and one female (unknown age). 1800 Census shows 1 male under 16 (could be the same child or the 1790 could have left and this is a new male) and 4 female children. These don't match the estimated birthdates of Gurley's siblings very well as I believe that Bennett and Emanuel were both born before the 1800 census. See the "Age Chart" on Gurley's siblings.
ARTHUR SELLERS, Sr.
I believe Arthur Sellers, Sr. in Nash Co. in the 1782 Nash Co. Tax list is a descendent of William Sellers of Isle of Wight. It’s possible that he is the father of Arthur, Jr. It’s also possible they are just cousins or uncle/nephew or not even kin. Traditionally in those days, if two people having the same name were living in the same town or area, whether related or not, the older of the two was often referred to as Sr. and the younger as Jr.