Wayne County, North Carolina: Biographies
Dr. Andrew Bass
Founder of Waynesborough
Reprinted with permission of the Mt. Olive
Tribune and cannot be reproduced without permission.
By Claude Moore
Dr. Andrew Bass, physician & planter was not only the leading figure in
Wayne County at the time of the American Revolution, but he was the founder
of the old town of Waynesborough & one of the promoters for the
of Wayne County in 1779. He was also a member of the Constitutional
Convention of 1788.
Dr. Bass came from a long line of distinguished men back in England & of
pioneers here in the American Colonies. His first known Bass forefather was
Humphrey Bass (died 1616) who married Mary Buschier & lived in Middlesex
Parish, London. He was a shareholder in the Virginia Company in 1612. His
son Nathaniel Bass (born 1589) married Mary Jourdan & came to Jamestown,
Virginia in 1622. John Bass (son of Nathaniel) married Keziah Elizabeth
Tucker Anasemond, Indian princess & had a son, Richard Bass who married
Mary Barwell. Richard & Mary Bass had six sons: Andrew, Alexander, Richard,
William, Uriah & Thomas.
He received large land grants on both sides of the Neuse River. He married
& had the following children: Richard, Andrew, (Dr.) & Anne (died 1807)
married Richard Blackledge & lived in New Bern.
Dr. Andrew Bass, Jr., married Alice Rhodes & had one daughter. He owned
more than 4,000 acres on both sides of the Neuse on Thoroughfare & Brooks
Swamp. I am of the opinion from the description of a grant in 1785 that he
owned the land on which Mount Olive College is located.
He owned a watermill on Brooks Swamp, operated a ferry on the Neuse & owned
the land on which Waynesborough was laid out in 1787. He left 24 slaves to
his daughter, Ann Bass who married General James Rhodes (1765-1810) & had
the following children: Sally Ann (born 1794), who married Dr. Stephen Smith
& lived on a plantation northwest of Mount Olive; Rhodes Clarissa Rhodes
(1800-1862) who married Richard Blackledge Hatch (1797-1835) of Onslow
County; James Rhodes (born 1805) who settled in Alabama; Joseph Andrew
Rhodes (1803-1812); William Thomas Rhodes (1808-1816); & Anna Maria Rhodes
(1797-1859) who married (1) General Edward Ward (2) Dr. Buckner L. Hill
(1800-1861) & lived on a plantation called "Vernon", northwest of
Olive. Anna Maria Rhodes Ward Hill had no children & her extensive
properties were left to her nieces & nephews. Ann Rhodes later married
Richard & Rhodes Clarissa Hatch had the following children: Joseph Hatch
(1821-1884) who married Ann Elizabeth Williams (1833-1922) & lived at
"Vernon". Their children were: Iva, James, Winnie, Buckner, William,
Malvina, Richard, Joseph E., Cullen, Robert W. & Francis M.
Cullen B. Hatch (born 1871) married Eliza Holmes, the daughter of William &
Julia Peel Holmes & lived in Mount Olive. Cullen & Eliza Hatch had the
following children: Cullen Blackman Hatch, Captain in World War II; Mrs.
Ruth Hines & Mrs. Esther Burnett.
Cullen Blackman Hatch married Yvonne Cutts Cannon & they lived in northwest
Mount Olive on part of the original Bass-Rhodes-Hatch plantation. Both are
authorities on the local history & genealogy of the area.
In the Constitutional Convention of 1788, Dr. Bass along with most delegates
from southeastern North Carolina voted against the ratification of the U. S.
Constitution. During the American Revolution, Dr. Bass championed the
American cause. When General Corwallis came through the county in 1781,
much damage was done to his properties. He died in 1790 & is buried on the
plantation on Thoroughfare Swamp along with other family members of his
The pioneer spirit of Dr. Andrew Bass & his family should be an inspiration
to those of us today who have faith in the further development of Wayne
County. A careful look at the past can provide a solid foundation for a
healthy future. This is truly the value of knowledge & especially our local
history as it relates to future directions..
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