UPDATED 2013.04.30 // changes listed at bottom
It has been suggested that the father of Nathaniel Greene Golden (b1812) was a Nathaniel Golding Sr., and that he was son of Richard Golding (b1775) and grandson of Richard Golding (b1740).
Timewise this is very possible but also a tight fit. Richard b1775 would have been 37 in 1811/12 which is hardly too old to father a child; and Isabelah, wife of Richard b.1775, would have been only 35/36 in 1812 so … lots of kids born to parents at those ages.
There are indeed two strong circumstantial pieces of evidence that suggest there was a Nathaniel Golding Sr. — this evidence is a case of sloppy recordkeeping.
————— Ancestry.com lists a Nathaniel Golden/Golding that fought for South Carolina in the Revolutionary War. He is supposedly listed on NARA Microfiche Roll #89 and would have served in the Third Regiment. No such entry exists. Myself and another Golden family genealogist have gone page-by-page over these documents and can find no Golding or Golden or any such related spelling for a Nat, Natl, Nathaniel or any close approximation of the name. The South Carolina States Archives have also confirmed by letter that it has no record of a Nathaniel Golden serving in the Revolutionary War.
————— Property Transcripts – There is a typed set of property transactions that imply that a Nathaniel Golden received a land bounty in 1785 in South Carolina. This would have been due to Revolutionary War service. This document exists as an attachment to many different Golden genealogies on Ancestry.com; assuming that the land bounty was awarded to a Nathaniel Golden then he would have been born about 1765 or earlier. HOWEVER, the South Carolina State Archives states that whomever typed up the original land transaction extracts mistyped the name. The person that got the 1785 land bounty was Nathaniel Gordon not Golden.
>>> If Nathaniel Golden did exist and had received a 1785 land bounty then his birth date would be before 1767 (to receive land in your name you needed to be 18 or older) — which would make him about age 45 when Nathaniel of 1812 was born, much older than 35/36 for Richard Golding b1775.
I am indebted to Carole Alessi and to Tom Young for helping me track this information down. Tom Young deserves all the credit for corresponding with the South Carolina State Archives. Carole Alessi has been on the hunt for Nathaniel Greene Golden (b1812) for many years; he is our mutual great great grandfather.
2013.04.30 – I rewording my comment about sloppy recordkeeping so that it more clearly points to the circumstantial evidence as the source of such.