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Elizabeth Jordan

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At a Glance

Elizabeth Jordan of Orange County, NC was the daughter of Rev. William M. Jordan. In 1848, Rev. William M. Jordan succeeded to the charge of the First Methodist Church in Hillsborough, NC on E. Tryon Street, just vacated by Rev. Samuel J. Pearce, father of Annie Blount Pearce , a Burwell student [1].


Elizabeth Jordan arrived at the Burwell School with her twin sister Ann Jordan  in January 1856. Mrs. Burwell (Margaret Anna Robertson) called the girls only Nan and Bet Jordan, and describes the twins as being  "so exactly alike"  she could not tell them apart. Mrs. Burwell's January 19, 1856 letter to her daughter Frances Armistead Burwell , in New York describes the twins arrival with pleasure and enthusiasm. The twins mother, Mrs. Jordan, was an old neighbor of the Burwells, a valued friend, as well as a minister's wife thus Mrs. Burwell showed special kindness and attention upon their arrival:

...just as we finished dinner who do you think drove up? Mrs. Jordan with Nan and Bet to put them to school. Now don't you know we were glad--They are the sweetest little creatures I ever saw & so exactly alike that I can't tell them apart--to oblige Mrs. Jordan who you know was a kind friend to you and Nan, Nan has taken them in her own room--They are lying now like two little roses in the little bed by the fireplace--Sally Bridges sleeps on the couch at the foot & Nan & Jenny in the large bed--I felt for Mrs. Jordan as she left them--you know what a trial it must have been.

Mrs. Burwell's (Margaret Anna Robertson) daughter Nannie Burwell had four students sleeping in her bedroom at the head of the stairs in January 1856--her two cousins, Sally Bridges  and Virginia Bridges , and the two Jordan twins.

On February 16, 1856, however, Mrs. Burwell (Margaret Anna Robertson) wrote to Frances Armistead Burwell  that,  "Mrs. Jordan sent for the little girls today."  The letter indicates that the Jordans' new charge was not far from Hillsborough, NC, possibly in the northeast section of the county [1].

Biographical Data

Elizabeth was called Bet.

Places of Residence

Schools Attended



  1. Mary Claire Engstrom. The Book of Burwell Students: Lives of Educated Women in the Antebellum South. (Hillsborough: Hillsborough Historic Commission, 2007).