John Howe Peyton's Montgomery Hall

William Madison Peyton (1804-1868)

William Madison Peyton, son of John Howe Peyton and his first wife, Susan Smith Madison, was born in September, 1804 in Montgomery County, Virginia. He died February 16, 1868 in Montgomery County, Virginia at the home of his brother-in-law, Alexander P. Eskridge. Peyton attended Staunton Academy, Princeton, and Yale. Until he came of age, his father managed the land, money, and enslaved people from his late mother’s estate. He married Sally Anne Eliza Taylor, (1807-1881), a daughter of Judge Allen Taylor, March 6, 1826 in Staunton, Virginia. Peyton practiced law for a short time in Staunton, lived in Bath County, Virginia, Botetourt County, Virginia, and eventually settled at Elmwood (now Elmwood Park) in Roanoke County, Virginia. Peyton served in the Virginia House of Delegates in the late 1830s, representing the counties of Botetourt and Roanoke. In 1837, he served on the first vestry of St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in Fincastle. William Madison Peyton is known as the father of navigation of the Coal River. Peyton bought land, formed a mining company, and created a way to transport it by river in what is now West Virginia. Peytona, West Virginia and Madison, West Virginia were named for him. Peyton sold Elmwood in 1858 and lived in New York before the start of the Civil War. He returned to Virginia, purchased Alta Vista in Albemarle County in 1862, and lived there until his death.

William Madison Peyton and Sally Anne Eliza Taylor had ten children:

  • Elizabeth Taylor Peyton
  • Susan Smith Madison Peyton
  • Sally A. E. Peyton
  • Agatha Garnett Peyton
  • John Howe Peyton
  • William Madison Peyton
  • Allen Taylor Peyton
  • Betty Watts Peyton
  • Julia Amanda Peyton
  • Bernard Josephine Peyton


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