Historian C. A. Weslager believed that the Wright family originated in Lewes DE. based on interviews he had with Warren, Walter and Oscar Wright, the sons of Dave Wright. Weslager believed the Indians around Lewes were related to the Lenape's although the Wrights were founding members of the Nanticoke Indian Association.
Per Weslager "Elwood Wright was a river Indian in every sense of the term, and from his boyhood he had hauled nets...he was adept at making eel-pots....had fish hawks nest on his property and considered it a natural lightening rod for his frame house and barn. No good would come to anyone who killed a fish hawk or disturbed its nest..."
A search of the Sussex Co. records lists tons of Wrights . (There are also a few Kent Co. references although the Wrights seem to have been primarily a Sussex Co. family). Among the references are :
The St. George's Chapel records list the marriage of Nicholas WRIGHT and Mary, "free Mulattos", on 21 November, 1799. Many of the earliest mixed blood families were connected with St. George's including the Hanzers and the Johnsons. There is no information, so far, connecting Nicholas to any of the earlier Wrights.
- In 1680, Aminidab WRIGHT patented a tract of land in Kent Co. called Lincolne. This tract for 400 acres was surveyed on April 4, 1683.
- In the 1693 tax assessments for Sussex Co. we find Charles WRIGHT.
- In 1739 a tract of land was granted to John WRIGHT in the forrest of Sussex Co. called Bryer. A portion of this tract was later conveyed to his sons Solomon and Edward
- In Sussex Co., John WRIGHT witnessed a will in Broadkill Hundred in 1738 and again in 1748 before writing his own will in 1752 listing his heirs: wife Ann, sons Edward and Solomon.
- NATHANIEL WRIGHT witnessed a will in 1756.
- Peter WRIGHT is listed in the will of John Fisher in 1770 as a son-in-law (married to Peter's daughter Elizabeth). Solomon WRIGHT witnessed a will in 1770 and Edward and Comfort WRIGHT were named heirs in the will of Noamy Wiltbanck.
- The Duck Creek Monthly Meeting minutes in Kent Co. list that Fretwell Wright of Sussex Co., Tanner, and Mary Moore of said county, spinster, married on October 5, 1763. Witnessing the marriage were Peter Fretwell Wright and Jonathan Wright.
- On July 8, 1768 Peter Fretwell Wright of Lewis Town Hundred, Sussex Co., son of Frettwell Wright of Burlington Co. West Jersey and Elizabeth Fisher daughter of John Fisher of Sussex Co., were married at the Cool Springs Meeting House in Sussex Co.
- On July 23, 1768, the Duck Creek Monthly Meeting minutes in Kent Co. recorded the plans of Peter Wright and Elisabeth Fisher to marry, "having the consent of their parents"
The Duck Creek Monthly Meetings record the following children born to Peter and Elizabeth
- Fretwell Wright (b. May 31, 1771)
- Samuel Wright (b. April 11, 1775)
- Ellis Wright (b. Nov. 9, 1776)
- Elizabeth Wright (b. Sept. 14, 1779)
- Margaret Wright (b. August 2, 1782)
Margaret died the 8th month, 1786, age 4 years and was buried on Family Ground in Sussex Co.
- Peter Wright (b. Feb. 2, 1785)
- Sarah Wright (b. Dec. 3, 1787)
- Margaret Wright (b. 1791)
died in 1791, age 9 months, buried on the Family Ground in Sussex Co.
- Lewes and Cool Springs Presbyterian Church recorded the marriage of John WRIGHT to Rachel Dod on Jan. 24, 1769
- In 1770 Robert WRIGHT witnessed a deed for 100 acres on the south side of Mispillion Creek
- In 1775 after the death of John WRIGHT a parcel of land in Broadkill Hundred was conveyed by a deed of sale from Samuel Pettyjohn and his wife Ann, Executrix of John Wrights will, to James Pettyjohn. This land adjoined the land of Thomas Dod
- The 1785 Tax Lists for Indian River Hundred, Sussex Co., DE list a GEORGE WRIGHT among the taxables.
- In 1776 Francis WRIGHT appeared in several land transactions in Sussex Co.
- Solomon WRIGHT died in 1778
- In 1781, Richard, Sarah and William WRIGHT are mentioned in the will of Moses Lynn, formerly of Fairfield, CT. and in 1784 Joshua WRIGHT was mentioned in the estates of Elizabeth and James Turpin.
- Stephen WRIGHT witnessed the will of Philemon Lecount in 1784 and Francis WRIGHT was mentioned in the estate of Levin Clifton in 1789
- Francis later witnessed the will of John Smith in 1790 and Edward WRIGHT witnessed the will of Mary Wilson.
- In 1791 Peter Fretwell WRIGHT's will mentioned wife Elizabeth and children Peter, Fretwell, Samuel, Ellis, Elizabeth, Sally and Mary
Peter died on March 7, 1791 at age 48 years and was buried at the Cold Springs Meeting in Sussex Co.
- Lewes and Cool Springs Presbyterian Church records the following children of Francis and Mary WRIGHT of Georgetown
- daughter Ketura born April 27, 1793
- son Boyer (Roger?) Hurley born June 16, 1799
- Letters of Administration on the estate of Mark Cook were granted to Levin WRIGHT in 1794.
- In 1795 Nathaniel WRIGHT died and letters of administration were granted to his widow, Rachel and in 1796 Ezekiel WRIGHT made his will mentioning a son William.
- Robert Clarkson's will of 1796 mentions a daughter Sally married to Jesse WRIGHT and in 1798 William WRIGHT made his will.
- Jesse WRIGHT died in 1796 and the Sussex Co. Orphans Court Records list his wife, Sarah and sons Tubman, Elias, Jeremiah and Jesse Jr. Also Oakley H. Wright (b. 1784) and daughters Polly, Charlotte, Phebe, Peggy and Betsey.
- In 1799 Letters of Administration on the estate of Joshua WRIGHT were granted to Clement WRIGHT
Based on the census records, we find the following "free colored" Wrights living in Broadkill Hundred , Sussex Co., DE in 1840.
These names appeared in later Wright families so it is probable that Warren, Walter and Nicholas were all related and possibly the descendants of Nicholas and Mary.
- Walter Wright (born between 1816-1830)
- Warren Wright (born between 1785-1804)
- Nicholas Wright (born between 1816-1830)