Monday, March 31, 2014

Joshua Fairbanks - A soldier in the Revolution

1727 – 1781
(Family Lineage: 1  Joshua Fairbanks; John Fairbanks; 3  Theophilus Fairbanks; 4  Elizabeth Fairbanks; 5  Sarah Elizabeth Lane; 6  Estella Elizabeth Foss; 7 Harold Victor Hayward; 8  Judith Ann Hayward)

This plaque was erected by the Capt. Job Knapp Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution in 1923. It reads: “Old Boston-Hartford Turnpike Douglas Center Cemetery;  
Erected in memory of forty-six soldiers of the American Revolution who are buried here. 
They endured hardship and death for freedom and independence.”

     Joshua Fairbanks was one of the soldiers honored on this plaque.  His family had deep roots in America, going back into the 1600s. His mother, Hannah Coolidge, was born in Massachusetts in 1692. His father, Jonathan, was a second generation American physician who served in the French and Indian War and built a large home in Dedham, Massachusetts which is now known as the “Fairbanks House Museum”and open to the public.

      Joshua's wife, Lydia Ellis, was the great-great-granddaughter of Henry Adams and second cousin of John and Samuel Adams. Joshua and Lydia were married in 1753 and had 9 children, several of whom also fought in the War.

      Before his marriage, Joshua was elected as a Selectman in Douglas, Massachusetts. This group was composed of unhappy patriots who were greatly disturbed by the continuing imposition of unfair taxes by the British. To make matters worse, there were well-documented atrocities by officers of the crown who threw some of the local people into slavery and bondage for minor infractions.

      In 1774, Joshua participated in reorganizing the local Douglas militia, which was soon incorporated into the Massachusetts Seventh Regiment  (www., William A. Emerson, "History of the town of Douglas (Massachusetts : from the earliest period to the close of 1878"). On June 24, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was approved by the town, with not a single vote being recorded in opposition to it.

      Joshua's first military confrontation with the British was as a Lieutenant and Minute Man in Lexington, Massachusetts on April 19, 1775 where he fought under his brother-in-law, Captain Caleb Whiting (whose first wife was Joshua's deceased sister, Hannah).

The following is an excerpt from a description of the battle: 
"On the night of April 18th, 1775, a British force of seven hundred men departed Boston Town for Concord to seize and destroy arms and munitions stored there by New England colonists legally organized as Minutemen. 

It was a long and difficult night for the British force, made no easier by the obvious fact that the countryside had been aroused, was armed and was shadowing their march.
Lexington, eleven miles northwest of Boston brought the first confrontation in what would become the American Revolution. 

Disturbed by what appeared to be the preparation of a coming attack, the British fired a volley in what they later stated was a warning not to advance further. There was no response to the British volley until Silas Marner, a Minute Man grazed by a bullet, shouted 'Fire, for God's sake, fire!'  

Here, by an accumulation of such events, was the first intentional colonial resistance by an authorized and organized colonial force. It was here at the 'Old North Bridge' that the 'Shot, heard round the world' - now immortalized by Ralph Waldo Emerson in a poem written in 1837 – was fired.

 In 1781, at age 54, Joshua collapsed of heat exhaustion while marching in a 4th of July parade. He died the next day. His military service has been certified by both the Daughters of the Revolution (DAR) and the Sons of the American Revolution (SAR).use of his "advancing years" and the "younger age of superior officers" (he was 51).

Monday, March 24, 2014

Jonathan Custer - A Revolutionary soldier in Pennsylvania

(Family Lineage: 1 Jonathan Custer; 2 Benjamin Custer; 3 Isaiah Custer; 4 John William Custer; 5 Corda Belle Custer;6 William Frederick Franklin; 7 Edna Bethel Franklin; 8 Judith Ann Hayward)

(1734 – 1823)

      Jonathan Custer, a second generation American, was the second of six sons of Paul and Sarah Ball Custer. His grandfather, Arnold Kuster, immigrated from Germany in the late 1600s and settled his family in a predominantly German community in what is now Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. In 1759, at age 25, Jonathan married Hannah Peters Kendell, the widow of Benjamin Kendell. Together they had four sons and one daughter.

      As the Revolution gained momentum in other colonies, Pennsylvania was way behind the curve in preparing to fight the British if necessary. The reason for this was the existing political situation under the influence of the peace-loving Quakers who had settled the area and controlled most of the decisions made by the governing body. 

      Inevitably, as the crisis spread, it became painfully apparent that a fighting force had to be quickly pulled together and trained to go against the efficient British Army. The following excerpts from the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission website explains what decisions and plans were made once the danger could no longer be ignored by the governing body of the colony. (

Continental Army Soldiers
" The Pennsylvania Militia was organized under an Act of the Assembly of March 17, 1777 that required compulsory enrollment by constables of all able-bodied white males between the ages of 18 and 53 'to repel invaders . . . be capable of bearing arms and serve two months of militia duty on a rotating basis.' Refusal to turn out for military exercises would result in a fine, the proceeds from which were used to hire substitutes. . . as a practical matter anyone could avoid serving either by filing an appeal to delay their service for a period of time or by paying a fine to hire a substitute.

 "The Act called for battalion districts to be created in Philadelphia and in each of the eleven extant counties. The County Lieutenants ensured that militia units turned out for military exercises, provided the militia units with arms and equipment at the expense of the state, located substitutes for those who declined to serve, and assessed and collected the militia fines. 

 "The men in each battalion elected their own field officers who carried the rank of colonel, lieutenant colonel and major, and these officers were expected to serve for three years. Within each county, the colonels drew lots for their individual rank . . . When new elections were held for field officers in 1780 and 1783, the colonels again drew lots for their rank and this resulted in a new order for the battalions. The names of men in each company of each battalion were listed on a roll called "General Returns of the Battalion". On these permanent billet rolls, the men in each company were listed as being first class.  

"The 1777 Militia Act was replaced in 1780 and again in 1783 . . . The company commanders could also change. For this reason, a particular private might be listed in a different battalion in 1781 than he was in 1778 but this does not necessarily mean that he was transferred between units or changed residence. Most of the service rendered by members of the Pennsylvania Militia fell into one of these categories: second class, third class, etc. and were required to show up for their two months of active duty at the time and in the order that their class was called up (Jonathan was recorded as 4th Class).  

Most of the service rendered by members of the Pennsylvania Militia fell into one of these categories:
  • They were used to augment the operations of the Continental Line such as when some of the Associators (volunteers who were eventually incorporated into the Pennsylvania militia) accompanied General Washington in crossing the Delaware in January 1777.
  • Large numbers of Pennsylvania militia were employed in the summer and autumn of 1777 to oppose the British invasion at Brandywine and on the flanks at the battle of Germantown, though in neither case did they actually see action.
  • The militia provided a significant defensive force patrolling the south side of the Schuylkill River and engaged in occasional clashes with British outposts and scouting parties, including heavy skirmishes at Whitemarsh on December 7. Due to the sixty-day turnover practice, however, none of the men who were at Brandywine in September would have been present at Whitemarsh in December. No Pennsylvania militia served at Valley Forge, Monmouth, or Yorktown."
     Jonathan's name shows up twice on Philadelphia County muster rolls, the first  being between 1777 and 1780 serving under Captain Benjamin Brooke in the 6th Battalion, 2ndCompany, and the second in 1781 under Captain Isaiah Davis who also reported to Benjamin Brooke.  (

    Pennsylvania Archives caution that the Archive muster rolls include only a sampling of the records stored, so we have no way of knowing exactly how often Jonathan actually  participated as a soldier during that time.

Jonathan was 99 years old when he died in 1833.  His military service has been certified by the Daughters of the Revolution.


Sunday, March 23, 2014

Emarine Bartram - Mother of Queen Dickerson Franklin

Family lineage:  Emarine Bartram ,2,  Queen Rebecca Dickerson,
 3   Edna Bethel Franklin, Judith Hayward

1857 - 1935

Who was Emarine  Bartram?
Emarine Bartram
  • She was born in West Virginia, a daughter of Rev Lewis Bartram and Eliza Frances Walker
  • It is likely that she was named in memory of a cousin, "Emerine" Osburn, who died at age 5 in the same year of Emarine's birth. 
  • At age 17, she married 19 year old William Vincent Dickerson (an aspiring Baptist preacher), in Greenbriar Creek, West Virginia.
  • She became the mother of 7 children over a period of 18 years.
  • She was widowed at age 36 after a freak accident.
  • She died suddenly at age 78 while visiting family in Indiana and was brought back to West Virginia for burial.
Those are obviously the bare bones of Emarine's life and they don't even partially describe the woman who made such an impact on her large family and all who knew and loved her during her 78 years.

We do know that she was of medium height and slender, with gray eyes and black hair. She had a contagious sense of humor which did not find "off-color" jokes at all funny, and would not allow slang words like “gosh”or “darn” to be used in her presence. Although she had little formal schooling, she was self taught, mostly by reading her Bible and discussing what she had learned in her precious book with family members. She kept up with current events all of her life and passed on her love of learning to  her children, several of whom who became teachers.

Fortunately for family historians, Emarine's youngest daughter, Queen, (my grandmother) who was only 3 when her father died, was a willing source for Violet and Kent Bartram who were compiling the book “Bartram Branches, Genealogy of the Families of West Virginia, Connecticut and Pennsylvania”.  In writing this post, I found Queen's stories which had been re-told in the "Bartram book" were helpful in filling in some of the unknown areas in Emarine's life.

William Vincent Dickerson
After their wedding July 24 1874, the young couple lived with Emarine's parents until they could build their own home nearby.  By the time the 7th child, Henry (aka Harry) was added to the family, it became obvious that their home (which already had two stories) needed to be expanded.  

On July 5, 1894, at age 39, Rev. William Dickerson rode into town to buy some supplies for this construction project. After dividing his purchases so they would ride evenly on a  mule he had borrowed, he tossed the sack across the saddle. This sudden weight startled the mule. It jumped backward, jerking a hitching rack off its posts, which came down on William's head and knocked him out. His brothers, who had seen the accident, took him home and contacted a doctor who believed William couldn't have been hurt very badly so it was assumed he would simply suffer some headaches and painful bruises for a few days. When more drastic symptoms appeared, a more experienced doctor was called – too late. William died 9 days after the accident, leaving Emarine with 7 children ranging from age 1 to 18.  According to Queen's testimony in the"Bartram book", although she was only three at the time, "Father's funeral was preached under 4 huge apple trees.  Someone who had a mill made seats.  I remember them.  They were still there when Grandpa (Lewis Bartram) died in September.  Mother had an awful task. She worked in the fields and house, but was independent".

     Without a doubt, life had to have been very hard on the family after William''s and Lewis' deaths only two months apart.  Stories passed down through the generations told about a strong woman who would always feed anyone who came to the door begging; that she was a very good cook and would do anything she could for her neighbors. It is also documented that after her husband died, she had moved back to the family home and lived there three years until, in 1907, she and most of her children moved to Northwest Arkansas.  In 1915, she answered a plea from her son, Willie, to help care for his three daughters after their mother died during childbirth; and often visited her other children who were, by that time, grown and living in Ohio, Arkansas, Missouri and Indiana.

Emarine Dickerson in 1935

      This picture was taken of Emarine as she was waiting for a train to take her to Indiana to live with Queen, whose 2 oldest children were in college and 2 youngest were living at home. A family story told by Queen's youngest son, Carthel, is that while the family was eating Christmas dinner in 1935, Emarine excused herself from the table and said she was going to lay down for awhile.When they went to check on her, they found her dead. The legend also says that her twin sons, Lewis Floyd (aka Floyd) and Hiram Boyd (aka Boyd), both had a strong intuition at the same time that something was very wrong with their mother and although they were hundreds of miles away, drove to the Franklin farm where they discovered  they were too late - their mother had just died.  Her body was taken back to Barbourville, West Virginia to be buried.

     After her death, the gold wedding ring which she had worn from the day of her marriage which was inscribed “From W to E July 24, 1874”, was slipped from her finger by Queen and – when Queen died in 1998 – it passed on to her daughter, Edna and then - upon her death in 2004 -  to her oldest daughter, Judy (who wears it every day with great pride). In keeping with the family tradition, the ring will be passed on to a woman in the next generation of the family when Judy has no more need for it.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Reuben Nance - A soldier of the Revolution and neighbor of Charles Philpott

Family lineage: Reuben Nance  1, Sarah Nance  2, Enos Philpott  3, Rebecca Philpott  4, Lula Jane Johnson  5,                  Charles Thomas Copeland, Sr.Charles Thomas Copeland, Jr. 7

 1745- 1812

Reuben (or Reubin) Nance was the grandson of William Nance, who immigrated from England in the late 1600's.  Reuben and his large family lived in Henry County, Virginia.  He was a neighbor and intimate friend of both Charles Philpott, whose military record was described earlier in this blog, and Patrick Henry (who, upon his return from the convention to adopt the Federal Constitution, told Reuben that it  – the Constitution – would “prove a road of sand”). His first wife was Amy Williamson, with whom he had 13 children. After her death in 1785, he married Nancy Brown, with whom he had at least 7 more children.  (Yes - that totals at least 20 children, although some genealogists believe there were even more).

In October of 1779, at age 34, Reuben was appointed Ensign (or second lieutenant) in the Captain Brice Martin Militia Company under Captain John Walls.  This was the first militia company ever  formed in Henry County, Virginia. Although there is no documentation of exactly where Reuben might have fought, the history of militia action in Virginia from 1779 through 1780 is fairly extensive. Since Reuben did not enlist until late 1779 and the initial period for militia enlistment was three months, it is likely that he fought in 1780, at a time when the militias had become much more active than previously.

 “Virginia Militia in the Revolutionary War, McAllister's Data” by J.T. McAllister) lists Reuben Nance, Captain Brice Martin and Captain John Walls as militia participants and described what was happening at that time:  (

“In 1779, Virginia was authorized to send militia to South Carolina and by 1780, the militia was out in large numbers. The final phase of the Revolution in Virginia did not actively begin until the close of 1780 although, in 1779, Sir Henry Clinton, the British commander-in-chief, had sent an expedition to ravage the coast. Unable to make headway against Washington in the North, Clinton had carried the war into the South.
Under Cornwallis, armies overran South Carolina during the spring and summer of 1780, Georgia being already in their power. North Carolina was thus threatened from the South, and continued British success meant peril to Virginia from the same direction. To render the outlook all the worse, there were few disciplined Virginia troops who could be summoned to defend the State because the Virginia Continentals had been sent South, as well as North.

Gen'l Mathews' regiment had been captured at Germantown, Buford's had been massacred by Tarlton's troopers, and still other regiments had been included in the surrender of Charleston, to say nothing of still further losses. The drilled Continentals had proved themselves equal to the best British regulars, but although Virginia still had somewhat numerous militia, they were untrained men and therefore at a great disadvantage when confronted by veterans."
Thanks to a land grant awarding him 182 acres of land for 20 shillings and signed by Governor Thomas Jefferson on July 4, 1780, we can assume that Reuben's service in the militia was rewarded. By the time of his death, his property was extensive and – as of 1937 - the house was still standing and described in detail. He and some members of his family are believed to be buried on the plantation property.

    After his death, there was a bitter battle between the "old family" (children with his first wife) and the "new family" (children with the second wife), both of whom claimed a share of the estate.  According to Virginia Chancery records, this bitter battle for Reuben's property went on for years.  Even Reuben's close friend and neighbor, Charles Philpott, became enmeshed in the legal battle as the administrator of the will, and eventually had to subpoena his son, David, and daughter-in-law, Sarah, (who was a child from the second marriage) to return to Virginia from Georgia to testify during the probate hearing.

His service has been documented by the DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution).

Friday, March 7, 2014

Charles Thomas Philpott - One of George Washington's soldiers

                    Charles Philpott,  2 David Philpott,  3 Enos Philpott,  4 Rebecca Philpott,  5 Lula Jane Johnson,  6  Charles Mabry Copeland,  7 Charles Thomas Copeland, Sr, 8 Charles Thomas Copeland, Jr.

1753 – 1836

Charles Thomas Philpott, one of 8 children, was born in Charles County, Maryland.  At age 8, his father died.  Following his mother's death when he was  13, Charles and a younger brother, Zachariah, became wards of their Uncle Barton Philpott, a merchant and a planter in Frederick County, Maryland (at that time, Frederick County was considered the "far Western frontier").

In 1776, Charles, age 23 and unmarried, volunteered to serve in a "flying camp battalion" in Maryland ( a militia unit assigned to fight beside troops from Delaware and Pennsylvania and from Maryland to New York – wherever they were most needed). During his five months as a volunteer, he was engaged in skirmishes on “York Island” (now Manhattan Island) near Kings Bridge, at Tuckahoe Heights, White Plains and at Fort Washington on York Island.

After applying for a discharge from the militia, he enlisted in the regular army and  served as a sergeant in the 7th Maryland Regiment from December 4, 1776 to December 4, 1779. During those three years he never returned home.

Second Maryland Continental Infantry, 1777

Shortly after enlisting in the Maryland Regiment, he escorted 50 Tories who had been taken prisoner “somewhere in the North and were confined in jail in Philadelphia” to Frederick Town, MD where they were to be held.  From Frederick Town he headed to Princeton. On his way, he passed through New York, Pennsylvania and the Jerseys, and frequently met up with General George Washington, General Israel Putnam and General John Sullivan.

In his pension application dated 10 October 1832 , Charles testified that during that period of time he had fought at Staten Island on August 21, 1777, Brandywine on September 11, 1777 and Germantown on October 4, 1777 and also participated in some minor skirmishes. (William T. Graves, "Southern Campaign Revolutionary War Pension Statements & Rosters")

General John Sullivan
The Battle of Staten Island :  a raid by Continental Army troops under Major General John Sullivan (pictured) against British forces on Staten Island on August 22, 1777. 

After British Lieutenant General William Howe had sailed with most of his army from New York in July, the Americans recognized that the British position on Staten Island was vulnerable, and planned an attack.  Sullivan's raid was well-executed. However, it suffered from a shortage of boats to effect the crossing and one of its detachments was misled by its guide to the front of the enemy position and about 200 of his own men were taken prisoner.

Although he was accused of mismanaging the raid, a court martial later exonerated the General of all charges. 1,000 patriots and 3,000 British forces fought that day, with 10 Americans and 600 British troops killed or missing. ( of Staten Island)

The Battle of Brandywine   took place on September 11, 1777 and involved the American army under Major General George Washington and the British army under General Sir William Howe, during which the British defeated the Americans and forced them to withdraw toward the rebel capital of Philadelphia.

After a stiff fight, Howe's wing broke through the newly-formed American right wing and crumpled the American left wing. As Washington's army streamed away in retreat, he brought up elements of Nathanael Greene's division, which held off Howe's column long enough for his army to escape to the northeast. The defeat and subsequent maneuvers left Philadelphia vulnerable. The British captured the city on September 26, beginning an occupation that would last nine months. ( of Brandywine)
•   Sgt. Philpott also participated in The Battle of Germantown outside Philadelphia, again involving both General Washington and General Howe. This was a pivotal battle which involved a number of errors made by both generals. 

 Despite those errors, the French were impressed with the Americans, which led to the French making a commitment to support the American Revolution.

After being discharged in 1779, he was paid $120 for his three years of service and returned home where, on February 14, 1780, he  married a neighbor, Elizabeth Garrett Mockoboy, a young widow whose husband had died soon after their marriage. Charles and Elizabeth  had 8 children before she died in 1793.  In 1794, he married Elizabeth Hubbard with whom he had four more children.

In 1790, Charles sold his land in Maryland and joined 4 of his brothers and their families in migrating up the Shenandoah Valley where they eventually settled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.  

Although some of this land is still owned by Philpott descendants, much of it is now under the waters of "Philpott Lake" in the Fairy Stone State Park.  "Philpott Dam" was constructed on the Smith River in 1952 to protect the valley land in Henry County, Virginia.  

He lived for many years next to Reuben Nance (another soldier who will be featured in this blog).  Both the Philpott and Nance families were very large and many of the children intermarried, including David Philpott and Sarah Nance, direct ancestors of our branch of the family.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

William "Honest Bill" Blakely - Soldier of the Revolution and son of John William Blakely

(Family Lineage: William Blakely, son of John William Blakely  1, Margaret Blakely  2, George Copeland  3
Robert Hatten Copeland  4, Charles Mabry Copeland  5, Charles Thomas Copeland  6, Charles Thomas Copeland, Jr. 7)

1760 - 1847

"Honest Bill" was 7 years old when he and his family migrated to South Carolina from Pennsylvania.  His father was an Irish immigrant and his mother had been born in England.  He was the 8th of 10 children.

After joining the militia in 1776 at 16 yrs. of age, he was called out to guard the frontier between the Indians and white settlements. Upon his return from this campaign, he remained at home until after the fall of Charleston, when he reported to Captain William Milner in Colonel McCreary's South Carolina Regiment.  

The militia moved to the Georgia line, crossing the Savannah River and marching down to the city of Savannah, where they joined the main army under General Benjamin Lincoln. From there they marched toward Charleston and were engaged in the battle of Stono Ferry, where the rear guard from a British expedition, retreating from an aborted attempt to take Charleston, held off an assault by the poorly trained militia on June 20, 1779 and the Patriots were defeated.

There is a local tradition that after the battle at Stono Ferry, William was discharged with a fever and sent part of the way home in a baggage wagon.  However, he was so weak that he couldn't travel any further and was cared for by a benevolent family until the news of his situation reached home.  When his mother, Rachel, brother-in-law and younger brother found him in very bad shape and too weak to travel, they sewed blankets between two pine poles, connected the poles to two horses and brought him home in a swinging bed. He obviously  recovered his health and was able to fight again, based on his pension application and other historical documents. 

The pictured plaque reads:This cemetery marks the original site of Providence Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church, founded September 10, 1836. Buried here is William Blakely, Sr. survivor of Hayes Station Massacre 1781 who, with Samuel Blakely, donated the land for the church and cemetery. The congregation moved to Clinton, South Carolina around 1902.”

The massacre described in the plaque  was an example of the horrible cruelty of the British forces in South Carolina's back country. It took place eight miles southwest of Clinton.  The Tory troops were led by William “Bloody Bill” Cunningham a member of one of the most influential families in the area. He was an officer in the British army and notorious for his cruelty – thus his nickname.

Hayes Station, or  Hayes Inn, was owned by a Colonel Joseph Hayes, and served as a stagecoach stop and gathering place for the local Whig party. As war threatened, this group of men had formed into "The Little River Regiment" and were trained under the leadership of a local planter, Col. James Williams, until his death, at which time Colonel Hayes continued to lead them.  It has been documented that at least "one of  John and Rachel Blakely's sons, 'Honest Bill' Blakely, was actively involved in this particularly bloody event, and was one of the few to survive the massacre". 

Before re-enlisting in 1782, "Honest Bill" had joined his friends and neighbors at the Hayes Station in 1781 for what could have been a planning session or simply a get-together of men who probably thought the war was over and now they would be able to get back to their peaceful pursuits at home. This small community was made up of both Whig and Tory families which intermingled at events such as weddings, dances, funerals, etc.  They may have disagreed about political issues but had been living in close proximity for a number of years and had formed close bonds.

That all changed the night "Bloody Bill Cunningham" led his soldiers in a raid on the inn, which became known as one of the bloodiest massacres during the War.  After burning down some
neighboring homes, "Bloody Bill" had set fire to the thatched roof of Hayes Station.  After being  promised "safe quarter", these patriots had little choice but to surrender, since the smoke was very  heavy and there was nowhere else they could go.  In addition, they had every reason to believe they would be marched safely away as prisoners of war.

Instead, "Bloody Bill" had Col. Hayes and 17 year old Captain Daniel Williams hanged from a fodder pole.  When Daniel's brother, 14 year old Joseph, pleaded for his brother's life, he was "run through" and died.  After the pole on which  they were strung broke, Cunningham went on a rampage, and joined  his men in cutting to pieces both those men and 16 others they had captured..  Only 12 men survived somehow, one of whom was William, who was taken as a prisoner by the Tories, but held for only one night.  

After being released from jail, he fought in a number of battles which were documented in his pension application for service in the Revolution from 1779 through 1782.

On August 21, 2004 at a commemoration ceremony  ( at the site of Hayes Station Massacre in Laurens County, SC.,  Dr. Frank Wyman described what had happened to some of the other men who escaped from the massacre.  One, Thomas Hawkins, moved to Kentucky where he invented the Kentucky Long Rifle.  His idea of standard, interchangeable parts in rifles enabled the American contribution to manufacturing known as the "production line".  Another survivor, John Hewston, Jr., moved to Virginia where his son, Samuel (aka Sam) changed the spelling of his last name to Houston and became famous in The War of Texas Independence".

William didn't marry until after the Revolution.  He and his wife, Nancy Boyd, settled in Craven/Laurens County and raised their family there.