Thornton Stringfellow was born on March 6, 1788, the son of Robert "Tory Bob" Stringfellow (1736-1815) and Catharine Stigler (d. 1828). The Stringfellows lived in Culpeper County, Virginia, where Thornton became the first minister of the Stevensburg Baptist Church in 1833. He helped organize the Southern Baptist Conference (later the Southern Baptist Convention) in 1845. In 1848, he retired to his estate, "Bel Air," where he was a farmer. During the Civil War, he provided grain, wagons, and services to Confederate forces. In 1812, Stringfellow married Amelia Walker (1796-1829), the first of his four wives and the mother of his two surviving children, Penelope (1813-1852) and Elizabeth (b. 1817). His other wives were Ann Nancy Hill (1786-1842) and widows Elizabeth F. Gibson (née Gray) (1795-1867), and Emily Ann Bowen (née Spindle) (d. 1874). Thornton Stringfellow died on March 6, 1869.
James Lawrence Stringfellow (1816-1899), Thornton Stringfellow's nephew, was the son of James L. Stringfellow, Sr. (1775-1847), and Hannah Robinson Moxley (1781-1859). A lawyer, James L. Stringfellow managed Thornton Stringfellow's estates, and he later inherited Bel Air. He married Penelope Stringfellow, his first cousin, in 1843, and they lived at Bel Air and, later, Thornton Stringfellow's "Summerduck" estate. Penelope Stringfellow died in 1852, and her widower married Harriet Ficklin (b. ca. 1822) in March 1854. They had three sons: Thornton (1860-1923), George F. (b. 1861), and James (1863-1866). Thornton Stringfellow married Cora Bell Ewing (1859-1931), and they had seven children. He later inherited the family estates.
Elizabeth Stringfellow , daughter of Reverend Thornton Stringfellow and Amelia Walker, married Charles Catlett Taliaferro in 1832. Their children included Elizabeth C. Taliaferro ("Betty") (1833-1876), who married James Mortimer Spindle (1821-1907). Spindle served in the 4th Virginia Cavalry Regiment and the 51st Virginia Infantry Regiment during the Civil War. The couple's six children included Elizabeth Spindle ("Lizzie") (b. ca. 1860) and Thornton S. Spindle (b. ca. 1862). Lizzie Spindle married her cousin George F. Stringfellow, the son of James Lawrence Stringfellow and Harriet Ficklin.
Susan Blanche Stringfellow ("Susie") (1870-1953), the daughter of Bruce William Stringfellow (1838-1908) and Sarah Broadus (1837-1899), was a great-grandniece of Reverend Thornton Stringfellow and a granddaughter of Robert Stringfellow (1809-1880) and Elizabeth Ann Martin. After graduating from Captain Penick's Culpeper Female Institute, she attended the University of Virginia and Mary Washington College. She taught school in Culpeper County, Virginia.