Patriot Biographies

To submit a Patriot Biography, send your biographical profile to Submissions are limited to 200 to 500 words. For additional information please visit Patriot Biographies Initiative.

2017 Patriot Biographies Submissions

WILLIAM BUCKLEY, SR. (Abt 1725 – 1789)

My patriot ancestor, William Buckley, Sr., was born about 1725, probably in Westmoreland County, Virginia.  His wife’s first name was Elizabeth, and it has been speculated that her family name was Fryor, but no documentation can confirm this.

In the spring of 1776, William Buckley, Sr., along with his son William, Jr., enlisted in the 8th Virginia Regiment, under the command of Col. Abraham Bowman and Capt. Thomas Berry.  This regiment was incorporated into the Continental Line in May of 1776.  In the summer of 1776, the 8th Regiment marched to Fort Lee in New Jersey, and then on to Fort Washington in Westchester County, New York.   On September 16, 1776 William Buckley Sr., and William Jr., along with others from the 8th Regiment, engaged in the battle of Harlem Heights, one of the first victories for the Continental Army.  The day would not be a victory for William Buckley, Sr., for his son William, Jr. was killed in battle, one of approximately 30 casualties among the patriot troops.

After the end of the Revolutionary War, William Buckley, Sr., returned to his home in Loudoun County, Virginia, and appears to have lived a quiet life until his death in 1789.  His will is recorded in Loudoun County and lists his children as well as his grandchildren, through his son William, Jr.  His farm land is currently the location of Dulles International Airport.

Submitted by Compatriot David G. McIntire


NICHOLAS McINTIRE (Abt 1723 – 1805)

The earliest known ancestor of my surname is Nicholas McIntire, who was born about 1723.  The place of his birth is not known, nor are the names of his parents, but contemporary research hints that he was born in Northern Ireland, and immigrated to America as a child.  His wife’s first name is known as Abigail, but her family name is not known.  According to his will, recorded in 1805, he was the father of twelve children, eleven sons and one daughter.

An early deed record from Frederick County, Virginia reveals that he purchased 400 acres from Thomas Shepherd in 1757, near the present day town of Shepherdstown, West Virginia.  William McIntire, a son of Nicholas, would marry Elizabeth Shepherd, a granddaughter of Thomas Shepherd, and I descend from their union.

Due to his age, Nicholas McIntire did not serve his country in a military role, but did assist his country in patriotic service, including paying the 1782 and 1783 land and personal property taxes for Berkeley County, Virginia.  In addition, he is listed in the Berkeley County Court Book  1 and the County Commissioner’s Book has having provided wheat for military and public consumption, and in addition was credited for having provided waggonage to transport food and supplies from Berkeley County to Fairfax County, Virginia in 1783.

After the Revolution, he would continue to serve his country in various civil service roles until his death in 1805.  His will lists all of his children, and the heirs of his deceased children.  It can be found in the Jefferson County, West Virginia Will Book 1, page 347.

Submitted by Compatriot David G. McIntire


BASIL BEALL, SR. (Abt 1725 – 1818)

Basil Beall, Sr. served in the Revolutionary War as First Lieutenant in Captain Thomas Frazier’s Company, 34th Battalion, Frederick County, Maryland Militia. Born about 1725 in Prince George’s County, Maryland, he was a son of Nathaniel Beall (1699 – 1757) and Elizabeth Brooke (1707 – 1774). The Beall family has a long history in Maryland and a complex genealogy. The famous Ninian Beall established the family in Maryland in 1652 after completing a five year sentence of servitude in Barbados imposed by Cromwell’s government as punishment for his service with the Scottish army loyal to King Charles II. He encouraged his cousins in Scotland, who like him were Presbyterians, to immigrate to Maryland. One of them who did so, James Beall, Sr. (1652 – 1757), was Basil Beall’s grandfather.

It is presumed that Basil Beall was married to Harriett Gaither who predeceased him about 1813, yet documentation of the marriage and verification of his wife’s name has not yet been found. Their issue included daughters Beth Ann, Mary Ann, Cillann, Ann and Mary, and sons Citizen, Joseph W., Ninian and Basil, Jr. Citizen Beall founded Beallsville in Monroe County, Ohio. Beth Ann (1776 – 1848) married Arthur Carter (1765 – 1842) and their daughter Lee Ann (1788 – 1844) is my third great grandmother.

Sometime after 1800 Basil Beall relocated from Montgomery County, Maryland to Ohio County, West Virginia. His farm was located on property in Wheeling that was acquired by Greenwood Cemetery Association. His stone house was demolished in the 1950’s. It is assumed that he was buried on the farm near the location of the house.

Submitted by Compatriot James Harrison Frey


HUGH NEELY (Abt. 1740 – 1805)

In 1777 Hugh Neely served as a private in the Mt. Pleasant Company of Associators in Westmoreland County, Pa. in the Revolutionary War. He was probably born in Virginia about 1740. In 1773 he purchased 267 acres in South Bend Township, Armstrong Co., Pa. and was among the first settlers there. In 1774 he served as a private in Capt. Hugh Stephenson’s Company in Lord Dunmore’s War.

In October 1776 Neely relocated to 318 acres he purchased in Mt. Pleasant Township, Westmoreland Co., Pa. from Jeremiah Meek, Jr. He was among the signers of a petition in 1787 to form Washington County from Westmoreland Co. Neely’s name appears on tax records in Mt. Pleasant through 1801 when he purchased a 200 acre tract of land called “Southampton”, which was surveyed pursuant to a warrant for the land he was granted in 1787.

At an unknown date he married Florenna who is believed to be a member of the Meek family, but no records have yet been found to confirm her surname. The Neelys had four daughters, Anna Barbara (“Nancy”), Rachel, Eleanor and Sarah, and two sons, Thomas and Bazeel Meek Neely. Their daughter Nancy married John Nichols, whose only surviving son, Hugh Nichols, is my third great-grandfather. Nancy died in 1790 and John Nichols was remarried the following year to Ruth Van Meter, widow of patriot Benjamin Hammett. Hugh Nichols was raised by his Neely grandparents who relocated to Wheeling, WV sometime between 1801 and 1805 when Hugh Neely died. His widow Florenna lived to 1817.

Submitted by Compatriot James Harrison Frey


ELISHA RIGGS  (4 Oct 1742 – 7 Jun 1777)

Elisha Riggs  served as First Lieutenant and later as Captain in Major Edward Gaither’s Company, Elk Ridge Battalion of Maryland. His appointment as Captain is recorded in correspondence in the Maryland Archives. Colonel Edward Gaither wrote to the Council of Safety on 21 January 1776:

“Whereas the Hon. the Convention has thought proper to appoint me a field officer of the Elk Ridge Battalion, I apprehend therefore the nomination of the Captain is with Hon. the Council of Safety. I am requested by my company to beg leave to recommend Mr. Elisha Riggs their captain if it should be thought necessary to appoint one; he is the First Lieutenant of the Company. I can assure you Gentlemen that he is the properest person in my opinion and from the beginning of our unhappy disputes has discovered a disposition that does honor to him as an American.”

Elisha Riggs was born 4 October 1742 at Riggs Hills and Rich Neck plantation in All Hallows Parish, Huntingdon Hundred, Anne Arundel County, Maryland. He was a son of John Riggs (13 Dec 1687 – 17 Aug 1762) and Mary Davis (9 Jan 1702 – 13 Dec 1768). In 1761 he was living on Bordley’s Choice, his father’s plantation in the lower district of Frederick County, and that year he signed a petition with his brothers Thomas and John to Gov. Horatio Sharpe for a new Chapel of Ease on Hawlings River, Prince George’s Parish. Upon his father’s death in 1762 he inherited 200 acres of Bordley’s Choice. In 1771-72 he married Carolina Welsh (abt 1775 – Feb 1788), a daughter of Richard Welsh (1734 – abt 1755) and Hamutel Hammond (abt 1735 – Jul 1815). Elisha and Carolina’s children included daughters Ann (1772 – ?), Mary Hammond (1776 – ?) and Sarah (1777 – 1795), and sons John Hammond and (1773 – 1849) and James (1775 – 1861).

Other records from the Maryland Archives mention Captain Riggs:

On July 14, 1776 Col. Thomas Dorsey of the Elk Ridge Battalion wrote to the Council of Safety:

“Gentlemen: Capt. Riggs waits on you with a company of militia out of my Battalion. The extreme busy time has prevented my being able to send them sooner. I hope they will be relieved by the Flying Camp in a few days. If they are not, I propose to relieve them by another company out of the Battalion. I am, Gentlemen, your most humble servant, Thomas Dorsey”

Also an order from the Archives: “Ordered July 15, 1776 That Commissary of Stores deliver to Capt. Elisha Riggs, for the use of his Company, 6 muskets, 30 gun flints, 72 cartouche boxes and a quantity of ammunition sufficient for his Company.”

Captain Riggs’ untimely death at age 35 years cut short his life and his service as a valued officer.

Submitted by Compatriot James Harrison Frey


BENJAMIN WELLS, SR. (7 Nov 1724 – Aft 26 Nov 1794)

In 1778 Benjamin Wells, Sr. signed the Oath of Allegiance and Fidelity in Baltimore County, Maryland. He was 54 years of age and consequently he did not render military service. Born 7 Nov 1724 in Baltimore County, Maryland, he was a son of Charles Wells (1703 – 1738) and Sarah Arnold (1686 – 1792) who lived to the age of 106! In 1723 he married Temperance Butler (1726 – 1800), daughter of Henry Butler (1689 – 1746) and Susannah White (1693 – 1769). Benjamin and Temperance were the parents of ten children.

A third generation Marylander, Benjamin gradually sold off his property in Baltimore County and about 1782 joined his older sons, Charles and Absalom, who had settled around Buffalo Creek in present-day Brooke County in the northern panhandle of West Virginia. Benjamin built a stockade home as a defense against the Native Americans. This family was known as the “Big Wells” because of their large physical stature and strength and to distinguish them from another branch of the family in the area who were known as the “Little Wells.”

Son Charles Wells (1745 – 1815) established Charles Town on the Ohio River, 16 miles north of Wheeling, West Virginia. The town was later renamed Wellsburg to avoid confusion with Charles Town in Jefferson County, West Virginia. Charles relocated to Tyler County in 1802 and established the community called Wells Landing. His daughters Sarah and Delilah developed his property, founding Sistersville, West Virginia.

Benjamin Wells, Sr. died in Ohio County, West Virginia late in 1794 aged 72 years.

Submitted by Compatriot James Harrison Frey


JOSIAS BROWN (1744 – 27 Mar 1821)

Josias Brown served as a private first class in Captain Alexander Peebles Company of the 6th Battalion, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania Militia. Born in Ireland in 1744 he was married about 1767 to Hannah Mitchell (abt. 1747 – 14 Oct 1835), a daughter of Gavin Mitchell and Isabella Campbell. His name appears on tax rolls in Letterkenny and Hopewell Townships, Cumberland County, PA from 1777. He and his family moved to Ohio County, Virginia (now West Virginia) about 1793 and established Good Shepherd Farm, which exists to this day on Brown’s Run Road. Records indicate that Josias was a “tanner and yeoman.” Children of Josias and Hannah Brown were sons Alexander (1774 – 1850), Josias, Jr. (1803 – 1890) and John (1807 – 1857) and daughters Jane (1780 – 1868) and Ruth (1791 – 1862). The family were members of the Forks of Wheeling Presbyterian Church, also known as Stone Presbyterian Church. Founded in 1787, Forks of Wheeling was the first Presbyterian organization in the area.

The pioneers first worshipped under a giant oak tree, with muskets at hand in the event of Indian raids. The site later sheltered the first crude, tent-like structure with raised platform, erected in 1790. The oak tree survived until the winter of 1998-99 when it died and was cut down. Its age was estimated at over 300 years. The church cemetery is the final resting place of 19 patriots including two colonels, Moses Caton Chapline, and David Shepherd, who gave the land to the church.

Josias and Hannah Brown were buried in the Old Tent Cemetery on Peters Run Road, Ohio County, about six miles from Wheeling, which is also the burial place of other Scots-Irish Presbyterians and patriots, many of whom were related by marriage.

Submitted by Compatriot James Harrison Frey


BOAZ FLEMING (1758-1830)

Patriot Boaz Fleming was born in 1758 in Kent County, Delaware, the son of William Fleming, a Scottish immigrant, and his wife Jane Frame.  About 1785 he married Elizabeth Hutchinson, and to this marriage eight children were born.

During the Revolutionary War, Boaz Fleming enlisted in the Kent County Delaware Militia as a private in the second regiment under the command of Colonel Henry Neill.  He was discharged in 1781 after serving about 18 months in active service.

In the year 1787, he relocated to Monongalia County, Virginia (now West Virginia), where he patented a tract of land consisting of 248 acres.  In 1819, he petitioned the Virginia Legislature for a charter for the creation of a town on his land.  This charter was granted in 1820, and the town was named Middletown, which would be renamed in 1843 to its current name of Fairmont.

Boaz Fleming died in 1830 and is buried in Woodlawn Cemetery on land belonging to him.  The local DAR chapter has placed a patriot marker on his grave.  His last will and testament, which lists all of his heirs, is recorded in County Clerk’s office in Monongalia County, West Virginia.

Patriot Fleming whose biography was submitted by Compatriot David G. McIntire, is the ancestor of Compatriot William B. Crowl


WILLIAM ASBURY (1724-1793)

Patriot William Asbury was born about 1724, probably in Westmoreland County, Virginia.  He married Jean Ancrum in 1749 in Overwharton Parrish, Stafford County, Virginia, and several children were born to this union.  Shortly after his marriage he relocated to Prince William County, Virginia, which was divided into Fauquier County in 1752.  He would live the rest of his life in Fauquier County.

As with many men over the age of 50, he did not see active military service, even though most of his sons and sons-in-law are acknowledged Patriots who served in the Virginia militia or the Continental line.  However, William Asbury did serve his country with various acts of patriotic service.

Patriot Asbury is listed as having paid the 1782 and 1783 land and personal property tax in Fauquier County, Virginia. In addition, the Library of Virginia has listed public service claims in 1782, among which Patriot Asbury provided seven and a half bushels of rye, and 300 pounds of beef for military and civilian consumption.  Finally, Patriot Asbury is listed on the 1779 Virginia Short Census, which was an attempt by the Commonwealth of Virginia to recall its currency due to its extreme devaluation of the currency because of inflation and counterfeiting thus aiding the economy of Virginia.

William Asbury died in 1793, and his probate record is located at the Court Clerk’s Office in Fauquier County.  After his death, his widow and many of his children relocated to Harrison County, Virginia (now West Virginia), where his widow died in 1816.  Some of the patriot’s children also relocated to present-day Mason County, Kentucky.

Patriot Asbury whose biography was submitted by Compatriot David G. McIntire, is the ancestor of Compatriot Jeremy C. McCamic.


2016 Patriot Biographies Submissions


Charles Anderson was born on Swan Creek Run in Baltimore County, Maryland on 27 March 1734, the fourth of the five children of Charles Anderson and Grace Preston Anderson. The family land was near Aberdeen in the northeastern part of Baltimore County which was formed into Harford County in 1774, now Susquehanna Hundred, Harford County. Speculation is that Charles 1 migrated up the Chesapeake Bay from Jamestown or Norfolk.

Charles became a millwright and is referred to as a tradesman in Harford County records. He inherited a small parcel of land from his mother as well as half-interest in his father’s farms and bought several other tracts in the general area. He was a large land owner but he did not have any slaves and refused to have any part of it.

In 1756, he married Mary Mitchell a girl his age of 22, daughter of Richard Mitchell and Elizabeth Williams.  Census records of Susquehanna Hundred recorded in 1776 shows Charles and Mary Anderson having eight children.

Charles was elected to the Harford County Committee in February 1775, and signed the Bush Declaration one month later.


March 22nd, 1775


Descendants of signers may become members of “THE HEREDITARY ORDER OF THE SIGNERS OF THE BUSH DECLARATION “.

In September 1775, Charles Anderson was commissioned a Captain of militia of the Providence of Maryland and reported that Harford County Company No.3 consisting of 4 officers and 60 privates had formed themselves into the military unit. A part of the troops sent by Maryland to the Continental Army was called the “Flying Camp.” Several companies of the Camp were called “Harford Rifles.” Charles Anderson also became a member of the Captain Harris Company of Harford Rifles, established Nov. 2, 1776 in Philadelphia, PA.

In 1776, Charles began to sell his land in Harford Maryland and by May he had sold most it. Then the Andersons began their move west following Braddock’s road across the mountains and then down off Chestnut Ridge through Beeson’s Town to the Monongahela at Redstone. They chose to settle on Muddy Creek, Cumberland Township, Washington County, Pennsylvania. The southern part of that County, including all of Cumberland Township, was to be cut off and established as Greene County. Here land could be claimed for only a few cents per acre from the state. After they claimed their section, Charles also added another claim that was Edmund Polke’s that he did not live on.  This was 700 acre. Charles lived his life there 1/2 mile from what is now Carmichaels, Greene County, Pennsylvania.  During his time in Carmichaels he was a signer of a failed petition to the Continental Congress to form a new state of West Sylvania.  Charles died in Carmichaels in 1824, and was buried in the Anderson family cemetery along with his wife Mary Mitchell Anderson.

On October 8, 1975, all grave stones/markers were moved to a nearby wooded fence line in order to develop the Carmichaels Golf Course. I visited that site in 2015 and was able to find both Charles and Mary’s grave markers off in the weeds against a tree. It is to me very disgusting and sad that this is allowed to happen!

Submitted by Compatriot J. Gary Auber


The remarkable life of David Shepherd began in Frederick County, Virginia (now Jefferson County, WV), where he was born in January, 1734 to Thomas Shepherd, an estate owner, and his wife Elizabeth (Van Meter) Shepherd. In about 1752 he married Rachel Teague and to this union five children were born.

In 1770 David Shepherd and his family relocated to present day Ohio County, West Virginia, beginning a long career of service to his nation. My patriot ancestor has a history of military, civil, and patriotic service to his state of Virginia and the new republic.  His patriotic service includes paying the 1783 supply and land tax, as well as taking the Oath of Fidelity in 1777.

The military service of David Shepherd is extensive, for he assumed the following military positions. On September 4, 1776 he was appointed by Governor Patrick Henry as a county lieutenant for the newly created Ohio County. On June 2, 1777, he was promoted to rank of Colonel in the Virginia militia. Also in 1777, he was ordered by General Hand to assume command of Fort Henry, and led the defense of that fort during the first siege on September 1, 1777. He was also in command of the Coshocton expedition in 1781.

Besides an impressive list of military accomplishments, Col. Shepherd performed many duties in a civil capacity beginning with his appointment to the Committee of Public Safety in 1775. His other civil positions included magistrate and justice of the peace, a position he held until his death in 1795, as well as fulfilling the unexpired term as High Sheriff of Ohio in 1778, due to the sudden death of John McColloch.  Finally, he was a representative of the peace talks held at Fort Pitt with the Delaware Indians.

During the last several years of his life, he assumed the role of gentleman estate owner, and continued many roles of civil service in Ohio County. He died on February 2, 1795 at his estate near present day Wheeling, West Virginia.

Submitted by Compatriot David G. McIntire

2015 Patriot Biographies Submissions

The Fort Henry Chapter was one of only two chapters in the West Virginia State Society to receive a Patriot Ancestor Biographies flag streamer at the 125th Congress of the NSSAR in Louisville, Kentucky in July 2015.  The award was in recognition of submission of biographies by 20% of the chapter membership. The following biographies were submitted in 2015.

CAPTAIN BENJAMIN NEWTON, born 03 Feb 1748 in York County, PA; died 20 Feb 1835 in Cleveland County, NC. Married to Nancy McCall (24 Jan 1773 in Orange County, NC). She was born 22 Jan 1760 and died 12 May 1845 in Cleveland County, NC

Entered the service in 1776 in the army serving as Lieutenant in Captain John Mattock’s Company, Colonel William Graham’s Regiment. In 1778 he served as Ensign in Captain Jack’s Company in the regiment commanded by Colonel Dudley of Virginia: Next in Colonel Reed’s Regiment; then in the regiment commanded by Colonel Marshall of South Carolina. In 1780 he served under Major Harris in North Carolina and was in the engagement at Hawfield in Orange County, N. C. In 1781 he served in Captain John Clark’s North Carolina Company and was in an engagement at Polk’s Mill in which he was wounded in the thigh by a British ball. It was in 1781 that he was appointed Captain and served with this rank until the close of the war in 1783. He is buried in the Clover Hill Methodist Church Yard in Cleveland, NC.  

Submitted by Compatriot Glenn E. White



The life of William McIntire is a classic example of patriotism, courage and the ultimate sacrifice during this country’s history during the revolutionary period.  William McIntire was born circa 1750 on the family farm, near the present town of Shepherdstown, West Virginia. He was the son of Nicholas McIntire, who himself, provided patriot service during the revolutionary period.

In about 1770, he relocated to the Ohio territory, near the present day city of Wheeling WV, along with other many of other Virginia families.  His marriage was to Elizabeth Shepherd, the eldest daughter of David Shepherd, who would become a colonel of the Virginia militia, and commander of Fort Henry.

After the first siege of Fort Henry, on September 1, 1777, General Hand commanded David Shepherd to assume the command of Fort Henry, and Major McIntire, his son in law, assumed the position of paymaster of the fort, a position he held for the next four years.  According to the Draper manuscript collection, Major McIntire was a defender of Fort Henry during the second siege of Fort Henry in 1782, which is considered the last battle of the Revolutionary War.

Submitted by Compatriot David G. McIntire


THOMAS PHILLIPS, SR. was born c. 1739 and died on the 8th of August 1810 in Randolph County, Virginia.  He enlisted with a Virginia Militia group, under the command of Captain Ralph Stuart, and fought in Lord Dunmore’s War in the Battle of Point Pleasant on October 10, 1774.  He also took part in the Illinois Campaign with General George Rogers Clark on July 4, 1778, capturing Kaskaskia from the British.  He also served on an Expedition against the Shawnee town under the command of Gen. George Rogers Clark commencing July 18, 1780 and ending August 21st.  

Submitted by Compatriot J. Gary Auber



William Wilson was born on May 2, 1762, in Kent County, Maryland. He lived in Kent County with his parents until the Revolutionary War.

William enlisted in the Maryland Line at the age of 18. One SAR application says August of 1780.  He served in the Revolutionary War from 1780 until 1783.  He participated in the battle of Yorktown and then in the campaign in South Carolina. He traveled by ship from Charleston to Annapolis, Maryland and was released from the military in November of 1783.

After his discharge, William married Margaret Boyer of Maryland.  William and his family migrated to Ohio County, then Virginia, and began paying tithables taxes by 1786. Between 1784 and 1794 daughters Sarah and Rebecca were born, most likely in Ohio County.

William became a Methodist minister during this period, as there is a record of his performing a marriage on February 12, 1789, in what was then Augusta County, Virginia, the same as Washington County, Pennsylvania.

On July 6, 1795, William and Margaret bought a 145-acre farm from Samuel Beck for 106 pounds. The new Wilson farm was near present day West Liberty, West Virginia. Also in 1795 daughter Sophia was born, perhaps on the new farm.

In 1799 son William B. H was born, followed by Thomas F. in 1801, and Michael Asbury in 1803.

The Wilsons were busy raising their children during the period from 1783 until Margaret’s death, sometime between 1811-1815, as she appeared on the 1810 census and William remarried in 1816. Margaret was undoubtedly buried on the West Liberty farm. A graveyard was mentioned in William’s will in 1829. William was left a widower with several small children.

William, at the age of 54, married Sarah Hardcastle Pearce, a 40-year-old widow, also with small children, on April 11, 1816. Sarah was the daughter of Robert Hardcastle, whose family were former residents of Caroline County, Maryland, where Sarah had married Robert Pearce on February 2, 1796. Her husband had died in Ohio County

William and Sarah had a son, Robert Hardcastle Wilson, who was born in 1818. William at this time was 56 years old.

William applied for and was granted a military pension under the Act of May 15, 1828, Certificate #1004, and began receiving payments of $80 per year from the Wheeling Agency in April of 1829.

William created a will and had it recorded on April 13, 1829, with a recorded codicil on Jan 4, 1832. William stated that his assets should be divided into seven parts and evenly divided among his children, so we infer from this that he had seven children.

Revolutionary War veteran William Wilson died on July 11, 1837 at the age of 75, and his will was probated in August of 1837.

William was probably buried in either Belmont Co., Ohio, or Ohio Co., West Virginia.

Submitted by Compatriot Ronald L. Darrah



The Waddle/Waddell family’s long association with Ohio County, West Virginia began on May 15, 1795 when John Waddle (1729 – 1812) purchased a parcel of land on Short Creek from Benjamin and Jacob Payette for the sum of $500.  John and his wife, Mary Dickey moved to Short Creek with five of their six children after selling their 243 acre homestead in Cumberland County, Pennsylvania.  A veteran of Indian conflicts, John Waddle rendered service to the cause of American Independence as a private in the militia of Cumberland County, Pennsylvania.

In 1739 John Waddle emigrated from County Down, Northern Ireland to Philadelphia with his brothers, Thomas and William.  Originally from the border country between England and Scotland, the Waddles (or Waddells) were Covenanter Presbyterians, and a number of the family was taken prisoner at the Battle of Bothwell Bridge in 1679.  They were imprisoned and later banished to the West Indies as laborers.  However, the ship carrying the prisoners wrecked off the coast of the Orkney Islands.  Among the 50 survivors was William Waddle who escaped to Northern Ireland and established the family there.  The Waddell lineage in Great Britain is traced to the year 1296 and in Normandy to the de Toeney ancestry, an ancient Danish royal line that conquered France and includes the Dukes of Normandy.

John Waddle and his brothers settled in White Clay Creek in southeastern Pennsylvania, near the Delaware State line.  His brother Thomas established a family in Virginia and among his sons was the famous Rev. James Waddell, the blind Presbyterian preacher and educator of Augusta County.  Nothing is known of the third brother, William.   John subsequently moved to the Carlisle, Pennsylvania area by 1762.

At Short Creek, West Virginia, the Waddles operated a water powered grist mill from the early 1800’s.  The colonial frame house they built near the mill was cited in Charles J. Milton’s Landmarks of Old Wheeling as “one of the oldest houses in Ohio County.”  In the Wheeling Intelligencer’s obituary for Mitchell Waddell (1816 – 1894), the mill was described:

“In the long ago when the fathers and grandfathers, for that matter, of today were youths at Short Creek or vicintage, all of them knew of Waddell’s mill.   It was at Mr. Waddell’s house where all the social functions and infares and the celebrated fox hunts of the older times centered…and where hospitality was dispensed with a lavish hand.”  The nearby “Waddles Run” is named for the family.

John Waddle’s descendents continued to operate the mill and to farm the Short Creek homestead.

Submitted by Compatriot James Harrison Frey



One thought on “Patriot Biographies

  1. Hooorah for Mr. Frey for submitting this. I am a direct descendent of John Waddell.
    I have a lineage and trace the family as well.

    Thank you for this

    Patricia Waddell Hammons

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