Samuel Lawson received a deed of gift from his stepfather, John James, 25 May 1770. In the deed, Mr. James uses a phrase that, both baffles and intrigues me. From Craven County Deed Book 18, p. 1 and 2 (emphasis mine).
What did he mean by “as I stile him”? At the time, son-in-law was the correct term for stepson, so I doubt that that is to what he referred. Samuel was almost certainly not the son of an earlier Samuel Lawson, whose wife was called Margaret. He did have a daughter, though, Mary Pallis Lawson. I’ve also wondered if, perhaps, Samuel’s biological father, or Mary, was a Justice.