Cornelius Ruddell and William Vance, on
behalf of themselves and the detachments sent under their commands.
Richard Thresher, asked pay for taking a deserter, and Jacob Sower, who kept a
tavern, desired to be reimbursed for furnishing food, etc., to some
soldiers. These bills were sent to the General Assembly. Complaint
was lodged by Capt. Mercer, against a man and a woman for buying coats, etc.,
from soldiers of the Virginia regiment, contrary to law.
April 7, 1757, the court "ordered that the jailor suffer the prisoners to be in the jailor's house in the day time during the time the gaol is repairing. Col. Washington having agreed to place a guard for the better security of the prisoners." And here is an item the knocks the wind out of that little story, that Powell's Fort was so named from the fact of a man taking refuge in that curious valley and defying capture during the Revolution. The item was recorded almost twenty years before the colonies revolted: "May 3, 1757, John Funk is ordered to make a list of tithables from Stony Creek doe the North River to the mouth of Passage Run, including Powell's Fort, and all the waters of Cedar Creek." July 5, 1757, James Keith, who was afterward clerk of Frederick County, was admitted to practice at the bar, and on August 5,, Andrew Mealey was paid for work done on the county lots. And here is a piece of information that clinches the fact that the father of his country resided here: "October 4, 1757, on motion of George Washington, Esq., ordered that his tithables be set on the list." The following item shows the state of affairs, even in the town of Winchester with a strong, well-garrisoned fort to guard it: "October 5, 1757, James Wood, clerk, is granted the privilege of removing the county records to Fort Loudon, or anywhere else he may secure them from the imminent danger from the enemy." That was not the last time those ancient documents were removed for safety, but the Red Indian cut no figure in the latter case.
In December of 1756, the innocence of the Indians still increasing in frequency and boldness, Col. Washington drew up a paper on the military affairs of the province, which he transmitted to Lord Loudon, and in March, 1757, he attended a meeting in Philadelphia, where he was in consultation with several governors and principal officers. It was decided that the main efforts should be made on the Canada border, which Washington strenuously opposed, and recommended an expedition against Fort Duquesne. If those suggestions had been adopted the English would have saved the expense of an entire year's military operations. From this conference, disgusted and disheartened at the policy of his superiors, and with a hear bowed down at the sufferings of the poor defenseless frontier settlers, who were butchered in cold blood almost within shadow of the forts, by the wily and relentless savages, whose mode of warfare, stealthy and silent, was difficult to cope with, so long as the French backed them with their aid and the safety of their forts when pressed to close quarters, Washington returned to Winchester and resumed his routine duties as the commandant of Fort Loudon.
The puerile policy to say the least or it, of the military authorities of the colonies, due in large part to the influence of Gov. Dinwiddie, whose incompetency was well known, happily terminated by the sailing for the mother country in January, 1758, of that functionary, much to the satisfaction of Washington and the Virginians generally. Mr. Pitt having succeeded to the reins of government in England, and Hon. Francis Fauquier to the governorship of Virginia, it was resolved to prosecute the war against the French with energy. Gen. Forbes was appointed to the command of an expedition against Fort Duquesne. The force was divided into two regiments, the first division of 2,000 under Col. Washington marched from Winchester to Fort Cumberland with the main portion of the Virginia troops. The whole force comprised about 6,000 troops, of all arms. Much time was consumed in preliminary arrangements by Gen. Forbes, particularly in the construction of a new road to Fort Duquesne. Washington advised a movement at once, and if his recommendation had been heeded an easy victory would have ensued, for it was afterward ascertained that only 80 soldiers were garrisoning the French fort at that time. The construction of a fort at Loyal Hanna also detained the expedition uselessly, for the English, had they pushed on, might have then been in charge of Fort Duquesne. Col. Boquet rashly detached Maj. Grant with 800 men to reconnoiter in the vicinity of the enemy. The French permitted Grant's party to approach them as near as they desired, when they rushed from the fort, soldiers and Indians, and attacked them from all sides, putting the English to flight, and with great slaughter. No quarter was given by the Indians, and majors Grant and Lewis only saved their lives by surrendering to French officers. Maj. Lewis had come to the assistance of Grant upon hearing the firing in his front. He left Capt. Bullett, with the baggage and fifty men in his rear, and it is owing to the extraordinary presence of mind and strategy of that officer that the entire force did not fall beneath the strokes of the tomahawk and scalping knives of the brutal savages. The situation of the retreating troops was desperate. In the enemy's country, far from any English settlement, surrounded and pursued by a bloody and vindictive foe, there was nothing left for them but to await capture and the tortures of the howling red demon. But the heroism of Capt. Bullett and his few men saved most of the retreating force. This officer on discovering the rout of the troops, sent the most valuable portion of the baggage to his rear, and arranged the remainder in the road so as to present a formidable an appearance as possible. He then posted his men behind this breastwork and made as great parade as he could by giving loud orders for the main force to hasten up. These preparations somewhat checked the advance of the eager Indians, but fearing that the enemy would shortly discover his false position, Capt. Bullett resolved to try a piece of strategy that could result in nothing worse than what would be their fate if they remained where they were. He ordered his men to march forward with reversed arms, as though about to surrender, which they did, and the savages ceased firing, feeling sure of their prey. When Bullett and his men had advanced to a position indicated previously, they threw up their rifles as quick as a flash and poured such a deadly volley into the surprised Indians that they fled in dismay, thinking that the whole English army was upon them. The Captain, taking advantage of this state of affairs, after gathering up the wounded, wisely fled in another direction with as much speed as the Indians. This gallant action of a provincial captain, one of the most remarkable pieces of strategy performed by any one in any age, emphasizes the fact that the Caucasian is the master race, and can beat the Indian or any similar savage at his own game.
After more consultation it was concluded to permit Washington to draw up a line of march to Fort Duquesne, which he did, and at his own request he was to be placed in the advance with 1,000 men. November having set in, it was resolved not to make any movement till the ensuing spring, but two deserters having been brought to camp, who related that the French garrison was weak, immediate measures were taken for an advance, and November 25, 1758, Fort Duquesne was in possession of Washington. Very little, however, of the fort was left, but it was rebuilt and rechristened Fort Pitt, now Pittsburg. The other French strongholds were soon in possession of the English, and peace was declared. Washington in the meantime (fall of 1758) proceeded to Williamsburg, to take his seat as a member of the General Assembly from Frederick County, the people of this lower valley of the Shenandoah, comprising at that time what is now Frederick, Berkeley, Jefferson, Clark, Shenandoah, Morgan, Warren and Page Counties, having done themselves the splendid honor of electing that grand patriot and illustrious citizen to represent them. This same year Washington led to the altar the beautiful, accomplished and wealthy Mrs. Custis, and shortly after settles down to the life of a farmer of ease and culture, until the bugle blasts of his aroused countrymen called him forth from the shades of Mount Vernon to lead them in their contest for liberty and independence.
Washington ran three times in the county of Frederick for the House of Burgesses. The writer has in his possession the names of the candidates who ran with or opposed Washington, together with the names of every voter at those three elections, but space forbids the publication of the poll-lists in this connection; suffice it to say, that although these lists were obtained from an entirely different source from which the general matter herein contained emanates, yet there is scarcely a misspelling of a single name, when compared to the frequent appearance of the same names in the official records of Frederick County. G. Washington ran the first time in 1757 and was defeated, as will be seen by the following vote:
Hugh West, 271; Thomas Swearengen, 270; G. Washington, 40. The young man was snowed under that trip, but he had "staying qualities," as the horsemen say. It would not have been in accordance with the character of the man to let a first defeat clip his wings and send him ingloriously moping away at the ingratitude of politicians. Oh, no! That would not have been George; so two years hence he steps to the front and receives the reward of his indomitable perseverance, when somebody else is snowed under. Two of the candidates only could be elected, no matter how many ran. Here is the vote:
July 24, 1758. - G. Washington, 310; Col. T. B. Martin, 240; Hugh West, 199; Thomas Swearengen, 45.
Becoming still more popular, as the result shows, he ran again May 18, 1761, with the following result: G. Washington, 505; George Mercer, 399; Adam Stephen, 294.
There is a receipt in the possession of a citizen of Winchester, signed by the seller of a barrel of whisky to George Washington, in payment for said barrel, which was used during one of these elections. The future "father of his country" may have discovered between his defeat in 1757 and the election one year afterward, that it was necessary to "set 'em up" for the boys, and hence his increased popularity.
Peace having been restored, at least between the French and English, the colonists breathed freer, although for many years afterward the Indians committed numerous outrages upon the advanced settlements, and even making raids into the very heart of the valley, yet Winchester took a fresh start. Clerk Wood sold a number of his lots, and various businesses sprang up. Phillip Helphenstine, who was afterward a major in Col. Muhlenburg's regiment in the Revolutionary army, purchased a lot in the town, and resided here till his death. His lot was "No. 34, on the east side of Cameron Street, together put with another containing five acres on the common." He paid £25 ($125) for the whole outfit. Phillip Bush, another Revolutionary soldier, who kept a tavern here during the French Revolution, and who snubbed the crown prince, afterward Louis Phillippe, at his hostelry, and of whom more hereafter, was made overseer of Cameron Street. At the July court, 1758, John Greenfield was appointed overseer of the following streets: Loudon, Cameron and Piccadilly. Matters must have been progressing with fine strides, for the old records state that John Allen opened a tailor shop, and that Stephen Rollins was arrested for permitting gambling at his tavern; also John Stewart, inn-keeper, for permitting card-playing at his inn. A number of new licenses were issues to various parties to keep taverns; so that there could not have been at that early date, 1758, less than from twelve to fifteen establishments where liquor was sold, which places the modern Winchester, in quite a favorable light, morally, and shows that the present generation has not absorbed all the vice that ever existed.
As a sample of what was kept in stores at that date for the accommodation of the ladies who would go shopping on Braddock and Boscowen Streets, as they now do on Loudon any fine day, the following inventory of a portion of the stock of Alexander Cook, merchant, May 5, 1858, is given. These goods were attached and sold for debt: "One piece of flesh-colored broadcloth; a remnant of worsted damask; two remnants of shaloon; a remnant of buckram; a remnant of cheque; two beaver hats; a remnant of calico; one piece of cotton truck; one piece brown fustion; one remnant of brown broadcloth; one scarlet mantle; a bundle of laces; sundry pieces of tape and bobbin and hanks of silk; some small necklaces; sundry small trifling goods; one old breasted saddle."
The county also began assuming airs, for the March, 1758, sitting of the justices, that body ordered a silver seal to be made by William Miller, "about the size of an English half-crown, with the words Frederick County engraved thereon."* (*This old seal is still in the possession of the county clerk of Frederick, is used now, and has been used ever since it was made, one hundred and thirty-two years ago.) This outlay of the people's money, was no doubt thought to be justifiable, in consequence of the increase in population, for about this time the assessors, or tithable list takers, brought in their reports, which showed that there were in the entire region comprising Frederick County, extensive as it was, the grand total of 2, 124 tithables!
James Wood, in September, 1758, obtained permission by an act of the General Assembly, to enlarge the town, a portion of which recites that "Whereas, by an act of assembly, made in the twenty-fifth year of his present majesty's reign, a town was established at Winchester, in the said county of Frederick, which daily increases in inhabitants, and James Wood of said county, gentleman, having laid off one hundred and six acres of his land, contiguous to the said town of Winchester, into lots and streets, hath petitioned," etc., for the same privileges granted the other portions of the town, "it is hereby grants," etc. The trustees named in the act were Lord Fairfax, James Wood, Thomas Bryan Martin, Lewis Stephens, Gabriel Jones, John Hite, John Dooe, Isaac Perkins, Robert Rutherford and Philip Bush. Several of these gentlemen were also interested in the town of Stephensburg, which was established at this date, and of which more here after. February, 1759, Lord Fairfax having made application to the General Assembly to put an addition to Winchester, that body authorized him to lay off 173 lots, to "be added to and made part of said town, and to enjoy the same rights, privileges, and immunities that the freeholders and inhabitants of the said Winchester do now enjoy."
During the summer of 1759 the small-pox made its appearance in Winchester and many deaths occurred from that terrible disease, and to such an extent did it rage, that the justices were compelled to apply for the privilege of adjourning to some other locality. The following
Minute of the proceedings tells the tale: "July 3, 1759. - A writ of adjournment was obtained from Gov. Fauquier which orders that the sheriff give public notice by advertisement that the court will be held in the town of Stephensburg during the time the small pox rageth in the town of Winchester." But the disease also extended to Stephensburg, whilst it must be abated, or disappeared, from Winchester by the fall months, for on October 3, "sundry of the inhabitants of the town of Winchester" made the petition to the court for its return to that place, as the "small pox was raging at Stephensburg," but it seems the court had no power to remove its seat of justice, that privilege being vested in His Excellency at Williamsburg, for no attention was paid to the petition, the court continuing to meet at the latter town till the following spring, or rather it adjourned from time to time, and did not hold sessions at all, for there are no records from October till February following (1760). On April 1, however, the justices petitioned the governor to order the court back to the courthouse at Winchester. May b the writ of adjournment was received, and the couth has continued to meet where it now does till the present time.
Col. James Wood, the old clerk, who had seen the organization of the county in 1743, and who laid out Winchester that year, died during the winter of 1759-60, and at the court held February 5, 1760, Archibald Wager was appointed clerk by Deputy Secretary Nelson. Col Wood lets a son, James Wood, Jr., who May 7, was appointed deputy clerk. He became one of the leading citizens of Frederick county, was a justice for a number of years, and served in the Revolution as colonel of a regiment which he was instrumental in raising. He also became a general in the Revolutionary Army, and in 1791 was elected governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Archibald Wager only served as clerk about two years, for on May 4, 1762, James Keith produced a commission from the secretary of the colony, and Clerk Wager stepped down and out. Keith filled the position for many years, going along in the even tenor of his way during the Revolution, and far beyond, as though nothing unusual were happening. He changed his "Our Sovereign Lord the King" into "His Excellency the Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia" with an ease that was as creditable to his patriotism as to his proficiency.
At November court, 1762, Daniel Bush, Robert Rutherford, George Michael Laubinger and Robert Aldridge were appointed overseers of the streets in Winchester, in the room of Phillip Bush, Godfrey Humbert, Bryan Bruin and Edward McGuire. The justices also "ordered that Charles Smith and Daniel Bush do agree with some one to finish the Ducking Stool." A porch was ordered to be built to the courthouse and "7,200 pounds of tobacco" was appropriated for that purpose. In connection with one of the names given above the writer hereof found between the leaves of one of the old record books an order for goods at a store in Winchester. It is written upon a small piece of paper, such as was used at that primitive day, it time-worn and looks decidedly ancient. It reads:
To Robert Rutherford, Esquire:
Sir, Please let the Bearer have credit to the am't of 25s, and charge the same to
Your Humble Servant's acct.,
Nov. 2, 1761. Henry Heth.
Henry Heth kept a tavern, where Washington
mostly stayed whilst in Winchester, and Rutherford was one of, if not the first,
merchants in the valley of Virginia. Thomas Edmonson, in 1764, kept a
tavern in Winchester, and was in the same business as late as 1789, as his
advertisement appears in a newspaper of that date. He kept opposite the
Old Fort on Loudon Street. William Greenway, the maternal grandfather of
Mr. William Greenway Russell, of Winchester, who is now ninety years of age,
died in 1767. He came to America at the same time Lord Fairfax did, and
knew Daniel Morgan well, they living in the same section of the county.
November 1, 1768, Philip Pendleton was appointed deputy clerk of the
court. At this date, the tithables had increased to 4, 088, and in 1771,
to 5,406. In this year the small-pox again broke out, and John McDonald
and Humphrey Wells were permitted to practice "inoculation," that medical
discovery having reached America not long before. William Gibbs, Isaac
Hite and Andrew Waggoner were also permitted to practice the new process, but
the justices doubtless thought there was a limit to the matter, and when Charles
Mynn Thruston, Thomas Byran Martin, Feilding Lewis and Samuel Washington, all
gentlemen of high station, applies for permission to inoculate their families,
they were peremtorily refused and given to understand that they (the justices)
did not consider the families of the petitioners in any danger, and to cap the
climax, revoked the licenses of Drs. McDonald and Wells. Those old
justices thought they knew a think or rwo, and did not propose to let anybody
but themselves run this section of the valley, either judicially, socially,
militarily or medically.
April 7, 1772, Angus McDonald and Edward McGuire were ordered to agree with some person to build a bridge over the run on Main Street, and December 10, 1773, Frederick Conrad was appointed overseer of Cameron Street, and the cross streets and back streets to the eastward of Cameron Street in Winchester, in the room of Philip Bush. The small-pox must again have broken out in Winchester, for in the spring of 1776 Angus McDonald was ordered to place a guard around the house in that town "where the small-pox is raging." Shortly afterward David Kennedy was paid £69 8s. 5d. for his trouble and expense in preventing the spread of the disease named, and another sum (£7 17s. 6d.) for allowance. The foregoing chapter contains all the matters of importance and items of interest that are now upon record in an authentic manner, in relation to Winchester up to the year 1776.
THE REVOLUTIONARY PERIO DAND MORGAN.
SOLDIERS OF THE VALLEY - CAUSES OF THE REVOLUTION - OPPRESSIONS OF THE MOTHER COUNTRY - BURSTING OF THE STORM - ORIGIN OF GENERAL DANIEL MORGAN: HIS BOYHOOD; AS A WAGONER; WHIPPED BY BRADDOCK'S ORDER; FIRST RECORDED MENTION; ARRESTED FOR ASSAULT; AS A FARMER; AS OVERSEER OF ROADS; HIS FIRST MILITARY APPOINTMENT; AS A CUSTODIAN; HIS FIRST COMMAND - THE FAMOUS VALLEY COMPANY - THE DUTCH MESS - STORMING OF QUEBEC - MUHLENBURG AND HELPHENSTINE - FIRST COURT UNDER THE NEW REGIME - THE QUAKERS - TAKING THE OATH - SARATOGA - COWPENS - COL. WILLIAM AUGUSTINE WASHINGTON - THE WHISKY INSURRECTION - MORGAN IN CONGRESS - HIS CHARACTER - HIS GRAVE - THE "STONEWALL' OF THE REVOLUTION.
The Shenandoah Valley from the very first
settlement of that delightful "garden spot," as it has frequently been called,
has been known for its hardy, adventurous and brave population. It has
always turned out, when the occasion demanded, its full quota of troops, and
many of its sons have become famous in the annals of all the wars in which the
country has been engaged. It has furnished not only thousands of the rank
and file of the best soldiers who ever shouldered musket or handled sabre, but
has produced an array of leaders whose ability in warfare and whose name and
fame may be found in the pages of history, and whose memories will live as long
as courage and capacity shall have place as conspicuous virtues in the mint of
man. In the very earliest contests with the wily and relentless savages,
whose business was warfare and whose entire life was made up of bloody affrays,
and the pursuit of wild animals, the pioneers of the valley were more than a
match for them; they could conquer them on their ground, and were never known to
yield to the proudest warriors of the red race where they were not outnumbered,
two or three to one. All praise is due to those hardy old heroes who came
out from the midst of the comforts and even luxuries of civilization to build up
and make blossom this beautiful valley, wherein their children and children's
children might dwell in peace and plenty, surrounded by smiling fields and
lowing herds. Too much praise cannot be given - too much honor cannot be
paid - to the old pioneer who, with his rifle on his shoulder and ax in hand,
shot and hewed his way through heart of savage as well as heart of oak, to the
wilderness, which soon gave token of his presence by the curling column of smoke
from his cabin chimney and the ringing strokes of his keen-edged ax. The
true lower of the grand and great can never pass the grave of one of those
sturdy old henchmen of civilization without lifting his hat to, or dropping a
tear upon, the mouldering dust that covers his last resting place.
In the French and Indian wars the valley furnished the most of the soldiers who fought upon the Ohio, and were principally influential under the gallant young Virginian - WASHINGTON - in bringing to a victorious close that disastrous struggle, and even after a famous English general, backed by experiences English regulars, had been ignominiously defeated, put to fight and killed. It may be supposed, therefore, if she would send her young men to the front for kings and the upholding of royalty, that the valley would not be behind when the tocsin of war sounded for "liberty and independence," and nobly did she respond to the call - gallantly did she uphold her ancient prestige.
It is not within the compass of this work to go into the details of the Revolutionary war, but merely to touch upon such facts as are connected with the lower valley, inclusive, of course, of those who took an active part therein; whose names have been preserved from the ravages of time and forgetfulness, yet a few of the causes loading up to that important internecine struggle may not be uninstructive.
From the earliest settlements in America to the period of the Revolution, the parent country, so far as her own unsettled state would permit, pursued toward those settlements a course of direct oppression. She simply held possession of the country through what she claimed as the "right of discovery," and had precisely the same reason to so claim it as the Indians would have had to claim the British Isles if they had sailed across the ocean in their birch canoes, and, landing on the coast of England, set up their wigwams at Liverpool and cut a "tomahawk right" on the buildings from that city of London, and so on down to Dover and up to Edinburgh and Cork. She paid not a penny to the aborigines for their land, but hundreds of thousands of pounds were expended from the private purses of the colonists in payment for their estates. True, the generous monarchs made large grants to favorites, but they gave away that which did not belong to them. Without the enterprise to establish colonies herself, she was ready, in the very dawn of their existence, to claim them as her legitimate possessions, and to prescribe in almost every minute particular the policy they should pursue. No sooner did the colonies, emerging from the feebleness and poverty of their incipient state, begin to direct their attention to commerce and manufactures than they were were subjected by the parent country to many vexations regulations, which seemed to indicate that with regard to those subjects they were expected to follow that line of policy which she, in her wisdom, should mark out for them. At every indication of colonial prosperity the complaints of the commercial and the manufacturing interests in Great Britain were loud and clamorous, and demands were made upon the government to correct the evil, and to keep the colonies in due subjections. "Keep them down," said the English manufacturers, "they will soon be our formidable rivals; they are already setting up manufactures, and they will soon set up for independence." English writers vied with each other in insisting on the crown preventing the building of ships and engaging in the fisheries' trade by the colonists. One write, Dr. Davenant, said, "Colonies are a strength to the mother country while they are under good discipline, but otherwise they are worse than useless, being like offensive arms lopped from the nation, to be turned against it, as occasion may require." Acts were passed restricting trade with the colonies to English-built vessels, belonging to subjects of England. They even limited the import trade. They were deprived of seeking the best markets for their products, and were taxed heavily on nearly all goods sent from the colonies. The New England provinces were making serious inroads on the trade from England, and a law was passed prohibiting (to mention one article) hats being sent out of the colonies to foreign countries, or even from one colony to another. Ship loads of convicts were vomited upon the shores of the helpless colonies, and their rights were trampled upon the shores of the helpless colonies, and their rights were trampled upon in a thousand ways. In 1750 parliament prohibited the erection of continuance of any "mill, or other engine for slitting or rolling iron, of any plating forge to work with a tilt hammer, or any furnace for making steel, in the colonies under the penalty of two hundred pounds." Moreover, such mills, etc., were declared common nuisances and must be abated by the governors of the colonies. These were strokes at Pennsylvania and Virginia, as the above were strokes at the New England provinces. Is it any wonder, then, that when, in addition to those oppressive laws, the infamous "stamp act" was hurled into the teeth of the long-suffering colonists, and troops were garrisoning Boston harbor to watch and spy out any infraction of his majesty's mandates and to promptly suppress any outcroppings of freedom, that the storm burst forth with a fury that was then beyond the control of powerful England to abate, and that shortly swept in its rage every vestige of royalty and its accompanying injustice from out the entire thirteen colonies!
The volcano having at last shot into flame, the colonists at once sprang to arms, and although 600 miles intervened between them and the initial scene of the conflict, yet the Lower Shenandoah Valley raised, equipped and sent forward to Washington at Boston two of the first companies to reach that illustrious leader. One of those companies was in command of a man whose history is so wonderful, and yet so little known, that he merits special mention in these pages. This man was DANIEL MORGAN, and although biographies almost without number have been written of that famous leader, yet not a single writer of those works, it is safe to say, has ever examined the records of the county in which he lived and died, and where only exist anything in regard to his ante-Revolutionary life. The writer hereof has examined the pages of the old order books of the justices of Frederick County from 1743 onward, and is gratified to state that he has found the first extant recorded mention, with a number of others, all showing the character, habits, mode of life and gradual evolution from obscurity to honor and fame, of the noted general whose presence and whose stentorian voice filled his soldiers with patriotic valor and carried consternation into the ranks of his enemy. But before giving this recorded history of Morgan, some interesting facts in regard to his origin and early life will be mentioned.
Mr. William G. Russell, who was born in Winchester in the year 1800, and who is, consequently, about ninety years of age, whose faculties are well preserved and who is and has been a man of acute observation, has furnished the write considerable information on many points, both from hearsay and personal knowledge, and among other things says that his grandmother Greenway knew Daniel Morgan when he was a boy, and that she had often talked about him. William Greenway was the husband of this lady, and it is said came to this country from Scotland with Lord Fairfax. Mrs. Greenway lived near what is now the little village of Nineveh, now in Warren County, and she said that Daniel Morgan's father also lived near that place. The family consisted of the father, mother, a sister older than Daniel, and Daniel himself. Mrs. Greenway had often been to the house, and said that the elder Morgan was a quiet, silent-dispositional man; that he had a small farm and also a distillery. No one knew definitely where the Morgans came from, but it seemed to be the impression that they had emigrated from New Jersey. "He was a large, good-natured lad," Mrs. Greenway said of Daniel, and although not over fond of work, yet when he set about it, could do as much almost as two young fellows of his age, and although not particularly quarrelsome, seemed to be in his element when he did get into a fracas, and was never known to get the worst in a fight, except where they doubled and trebled him, as appears from a case on the old records where he has three men, evidently brothers, arrested for assault and battery upon himself. His assailants were named Davis. As he grew up he worked at anything on the plantations where he could get employment, and by the time he was twenty years old was a wagoner, and it is thought, although there is no authentic information in regard to the matter, that he was with Braddock as a driver of pack-horses or of a wagon in the celebrated defeat. But it is more than likely that he was one of the obscure privates in one of the companies that accompanies the unfortunate general and his regulars, and may have been one of those brave militiamen who saved the army from entire annihilation. This idea is more in consonance with the character of Daniel Morgan, for he was just twenty years old at the time, a hardy, brave adventurous spirit, an expert rifleman, and just the kind of a young fellow, as his course afterward exhibited, to be the first to enlist in any hazardous undertaking. In connection with his supposed service under Braddock tradition relates, and Howe repeats, a story of his being whipped, thus: "Morgan had charge of wagons transporting baggage. An officer came out and asked him why the wagons were not ready for the march. He replied that he had been delayed, but would have them ready as soon as possible. The officer replied if he did not hurry he would run him through with his sword. Morgan gave a tart reply, and the other fell into a passion and made a lunge at him with his sword. The latter parried the blow with a heavy wagon whip, broke the sword and gave the officer a severe drubbing. A court-martial sentenced him to receive five hundred lashes. After receiving four hundred and fifty of them Morgan fainted, and was allowed to go free. The officer, afterward becoming convinced of his error, asked Morgan's pardon." Morgan is also made the hero of several fights and skirmishes with Indians about this time, 1755 to 1757, which may be true, but there is no evidence extant at this date to confirm them.
One of the first items among the proceedings of the court of justices for Frederick County held May 3, 1758, is the following case;
Vs. In Tresp. - Ass'lt & Batt'y.
The Deft. being arrested and failing to appear, judgment is granted against him, and Elijah Isaacs, his bail, for what damages the Pltf. hath sustained, unless the said Deft. appear at next court and answer the said action.
This is, undoubtedly, the first recorded mention of that redoubtable soldier - that "thunderbolt of war" - the famous Revolutionary patriot, GENERAL DANIEL MORGAN. He was then twenty-three years of age and was noted as an athlete, a boxer and a wrestler. In it altogether probable that he frequented Winchester a great deal, as it doubtless afforded him employment in teaming goods from Pennsylvania and Maryland to the incipient city. He was over six feet in height, splendidly built, wonderfully agile and as strong as it was possible for a man of his magnificent proportions to be, whilst he had no more conception of fear than a lion. Just what Mr. Thomas Conner, the plaintiff in the above case, did to raise the ire of that brawny, double-fisted giant, is difficult guess-work at this late day, but it is easy to imagine the result, if Daniel did his work as well then as he afterward did on the braggart Tarleton at the Cowpens.
For several years succeeding the last date Morgan figures as defendant in numerous cases of assault and battery, but in nearly every instance the case is dismissed; in one or two, however, he is fined pretty heavily. He only appears once as plaintiff in any suit. This was against William, John and George Davis, for assaulting him. These parties were doubtless brothers, and as they, possibly, could not handle the stalwart fellow singly, all three of them went at him.
But he seems to be emerging from his "wild oats" state, for after 1764-65 no more suits are recorded against him, and in place of those disgraceful items is to be found the following in the proceedings of the justices, November 4, 1766: "Ordained that Daniel Morgan be overseer of the road from Combs' Ferry to the forks leading in to Winchester." In the meantime he became possessed of a farm, possibly by the death of his father, for on July 7, 1767, he obtained, the receipt of a constable for 728 pounds of hemp raised by himself, the county paying a premium on that commodity to encourage its production. November 7, 1770, he is still further recognized as a citizen worthy of filling a public trust, for it must be remembered that at the date named, and to the present time, for that matter, none but good and true men were selected as overseer of roads. This entry tells the tale: "Ordered that Daniel Morgan be overseer of the road from Cunningham's chapel to Lord Fairfax's." Now this was an important road, for it led from the residence of his lordship to the house of worship wherein he would weekly make his peace with his maker; so Daniel was selected, as Lord Thomas doubtless knew from his experience as chief of the justices, that whatever Morgan attempted to do he always did well.
But here are two entries in the old records that bore wonderful fruit:
"May 7, 1771. Col. Samuel Washington having been commissioned colonel of the militia of Frederick County, appeared before the Justices and took the usual oaths of allegiance to his majesty's person and government."
And three days after this entry appear the following:
"May 10, 1771. - Daniel Morgan having been summoned, appeared