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Nov
03

Fort Harrison Dayton VA

By
When:
April 13, 2019 – April 19, 2019 all-day
2019-04-13T00:00:00-04:00
2019-04-20T00:00:00-04:00
Where:
Fort Harrison
335 Main St
Dayton, VA 22821
USA

Compiled by Jim Moyer, March 2019, updated  April 6, 2019, 4/7/19, 4/9/19, 4/10/19, 4/11/19, 4/12/19

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Use this map instead of above map.  The above map will work if you select OK and then select [ ] on upper right hand corner to expand the map.

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Those preserving the memory at Daniel Harrison’s Fort House invited the Virginia Regiment George Mercer Company to muster there, Saturday 13 April 2019.

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Reconnaissance Report on

Daniel Harrison’s forted house:


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Questions we try to answer:

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Did George Washington come by this place?

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Did George Washington use the road Daniel Harrison built?

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Did Daniel Harrison build that road?

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What transpired at the Augusta County Court House about the French and Indian Threat?

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And is the family tree of Daniel Harrison and his brother Thomas Harrison (who Harrisonburg is named after) related to the 2 Harrison Presidents, and a 3rd President, Abraham Lincoln?

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Click or Touch to Enlarge Picture. Colonel George Washington’s aid de camp, Captain George Mercer and his Company of the Virginia Regiment, will appear at this site, April 13, 2019

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But …

Use this map instead to see location of fort.

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If Laptop:

Touch or click on Icon. Sidebar appears on left. Scroll through to read.  Go to bottom to see all pictures.

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If Mobile:

Touch Icon. Sidebar appears on bottom.  Touch sidebar to expand. Scroll through to read.  And see pictures at bottom.

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Below is not a still photo.

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Click to Touch to move Google Car by this Fort, a stone building once surrounded by a palisade stockade fencing.

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FORT HARRISON

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Detail to follow.

Virginia Regiment George Mercer Co will be attending

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Click to Enlarge. Picture from website http://www.fortharrisonva.org

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335 Main St
Dayton, Virginia 22821

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Highlights info row image

(540) 879-2280

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It was built in 1748, and is a two-story, three bay limestone dwelling with a brick extension added in the early 1800s. It has a steep gable roof and wide chimney caps. It was originally surrounded by a palisade and stories of an underground passage to the nearby spring.   Source.

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Life in the Danger Zone.

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Click or Touch to Enlarge. Or see this link to Interactive Google Map.

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If you zoom back out of this map, you will see attacks nearby.

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They might look remote or far away.

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But … News travelled faster than you think back then.

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Like a crime committed in your town, the force multiplier effect of many people knowing about the horror certainly did magnify the fear.

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And great distances were travelled.

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When Indians took hostages, they took them from this area all the way to Ohio or then to Montreal Canada.

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And here’s the Alarm gong, if it wasn’t also used for dinner.

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Click or Touch to Enlarge.

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Take a look at the Fort Harrison Web Site

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daniel_Harrison_House

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This is an artist’s

conception of the stockade

around the house of Daniel Harrison.

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Click or Touch to Enlarge Picture

The picture of

Colonel George Washington’s

aid de camp,

Captain George Mercer

and his company in the

Virginia Regiment

was taken on

Presidents Day, 19 February 2018.

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Fort Harrison, Dayton VA,  has graciously invited this group of re-enactors to show frontier life during the French and Indian War at Fort Harrison.

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This group  portrays a company  on Fort Loudoun Day who built and quartered in Fort Loudoun Winchester VA.

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That Winchester VA fort was designed by George Washington.

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The drawings of that fort still exist in the Library of Congress.

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Here was one skirmish re-enacted showing the French and their Indian allies fighting the Captain George Mercer’s Company of the Virginia Regiment.

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Did George Washington

travel by

here?


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There are several indicators George Washington knew of Daniel Harrison and his forted house.

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There are also indicators he travelled past the place.  4 times.

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30th. [Sept 1784]

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October 5, 1756

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October 20, 1756

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September 22, 1755

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30th. [Sept 1784]


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Washington’s Diary entry

shows George Washington

travelled by Widow Smith

who was the eldest daughter,

Jane Harrison b 1735 d 1796,

of Captain

Daniel Harrison – b 1701 – d 10 July 1770

who lived near her father’s house.

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The Widow Smith – Daniel Harrison’s Daughter

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Set out early—Captn. Hite returning home and travelled 11 or 12 Miles along the River, until I had passed thro’ the gap. Then bearing more westerly by one Bryan’s 1the widow Smiths 2 and one Gilberts,3 I arrived at Mr. Lewis’s about Sundown, after riding about 40 Miles—leaving Rockingham C[our]t House to my right about 2 Miles.4

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This was on the same road north of the Daniel Harrison forted house, and the Thomas Harrison House.

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Select icons on the maps to read more.  Zoom out on map to see the road revealed to be the route GW may have taken.

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See map location.

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If laptop, click or touch icon. Sidebar appears on left.  Scroll through to read.

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If mobile, touch icon. Sidebar appears on bottom. Touch sidebar to expand. Scroll through to read.

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Founders Online Footnote

to the diary entry of George Washington:

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2Jane Harrison Smith (1735–1796), widow of Daniel Smith (1724–1781), lived at Smithland plantation about two miles northeast of Harrisonburg, Va.

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The eldest daughter of Capt. Daniel Harrison,

she married Smith in 1751

and subsequently gave birth to at least 12 children.

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Her husband was a justice of Augusta County until 1777 and of Rockingham County after that date. He served as a captain at the Battle of Point Pleasant in 1774, became county lieutenant of Rockingham in Mar. 1781, and died in the fall of that year from injuries sustained when his horse threw him during a militia review in celebration of the Yorktown victory (HARRISON [7] description begins J. Houston Harrison. Settlers by the Long Grey Trail: Some Pioneers to Old Augusta County, Virginia, and Their Descendants, of the Family of Harrison and Allied Lines. 1935. Reprint. Baltimore, 1975. description ends , 200, 245, 318–19).

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Source:

https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/01-04-02-0001-0001-0029#GEWN-01-04-02-0001-0001-0029-fn-0002-ptr

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See more on Smithland Plantation being used as a courthouse for the Rockingham County split off from the larger Augusta County.   Rockingham is named after a British Prime Minister who supported repealing the Stamp Act and who supported American Independence.

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See  Interactive map on the changing Virginia Counties:

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https://publications.newberry.org/ahcbp/map/map.html#VA

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October 5, 1756


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Colonel George Washington

left Winchester VA

on September 29, 1756 and

arrived at the Augusta Courthouse

on October 5, 1756,

south of the

Daniel Harrison forted house

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See more on GW’s Southern Expedition, Sept 29, 1756 to October 22, 1756

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GW travelling on the Road built by Daniel Harrison?

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George Washington documents his meeting with Captain McNeil at the Augusta Courthouse:

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I wrote your Honor from Winchester, that I should set out the next day for Augusta;3 I accordingly did with Captain McNeil; and hearing at the Courthouse, that the Indians still continue their depredations [(]although not so openly as at first)—

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Capt John McNeil is listed as Captain October 9. 1756, in Colonel George Washington’s own Company within the Virginia Regiment.

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Colonel George Washington would have travelled the road Captain Daniel Harrison was assigned by the House of Burgesses to build.

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Wikipedia:

Captain Harrison was appointed along with brother John and Robert Cravens as overseer by the Court of Orange County in 1745 to lay out and clear the old Indian Road – “The Long Grey Trail” – through what is now Rockingham County. This was destined to be the most traveled highway in the Shenandoah Valley. In 1751 Daniel became Under Sheriff of Augusta County[4]

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See further down  for a VDOT historical research on Augusta County Court House records that appear to confirm stretches of this road and other roads in the area were built by Daniel Harrison and his brothers Thomas Harrison (who Harrisonburg is named after) and John Harrison.

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October 20, 1756


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Colonel Washington,

after coming on his way back

to Winchester VA,

may have travelled by

the Daniel Harrison forted house

after his stop

at Augusta County Courthouse.

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Noisy, Careless Militia

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On the way back to Winchester VA from Fort Dinwiddie and forts on the Jackson River, Colonel George Washington writes:

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With this small company of Irregulars;

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Click or Touch to Enlarge. These are figurines offered by First Legion Ltd. See this site if you want to purchase some and start a diorama. This picture comes close to representing the “irregulars” Colonel George Washington travelled back from Jackson River forts to Augusta Courthouse. GW reports that these “irregulars” walked through the wilderness talking loudly with no care the enemy might be near.

with whom order,

regularity,

circumspection

and vigilance

were matters of

derision and contempt,

we set out;

and by the protection of Providence,

reached Augusta Court-house in 7 days,

[ October 20, 1756 ]

without meeting the enemy;4

otherwise we must have fallen a Sacrifice,

thro’ the indiscretion

of these hooping, hallooing, Gentlemen-Soldiers!

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Source is letter GW wrote to Dinwiddie Nov 9, 1756 days after the southern tour was over Oct 22, 1756.

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It is interesting that Colonel George Washington chose not to admonish this militia.

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He chose to observe only.

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And what was on Colonel George Washington’s mind?

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Two more problems:

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His officers threaten to leave the service 5 October 1756.

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A huge invasion heading towards Fort Cumberland Maryland reported

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October 5, 1756

at the Augusta County Courthouse

after GW travelled by

the Daniel Harrison fort?


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October 5, 1756

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Augusta County Monument. Like the 1840 Frederick County Courthouse, this site is the original location roughly of its first courthouse. Click or Touch to Enlarge.

Colonel George Washington most likely travelled the road Daniel Harrison built to reach the Augusta Courthouse in Staunton.

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Once there at the Augusta Courthouse he has trouble commandeering men to scour the woods for Indians to the west on the Jackson River where trouble with Indians is reported.

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But that doesn’t happen. Then he has trouble raising men to even travel with him anywhere.  Then he has to decide whether to abort this southern tour or continue virtually alone.

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Excerpt from letter of 10 Oct 1756  :

Colonel George Washington wrote at Fort Mayo, 5 or 6 miles from the North Carolina Boundary. This part of the letter tells Lt Gov Dinwiddie what transpired at Augusta County  Courthouse 5 Oct 1756:

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Click or Touch to Enlarge. See more about this historical marker.

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GW Met Captain McNeil at Augusta Courthouse

I wrote your Honor from Winchester, that I should set out the next day for Augusta;3 I accordingly did with Captain McNeil; and hearing at the Courthouse  [Augusta County Court House ] , that the Indians still continue their depredations [(]although not so openly as at first)—

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GW Asked for men of Colonel Stewart (not our Captain Robert Stewart) to volunteer

I applied to Colonel Stewart, then present, to raise a party of the militia, and said I would head them, and march to Jackson’s River, to try to scour the woods, and if possible fall in with the Enemy. He gave me very little encouragement to expect any men, yet desired I would wait 4 days, until monday, and he would use his endeavours to collect a body: until Tuesday I waited, and only 9 men appeared. This being too inconsiderable a number to expose to a triumphant enemy;

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I was advised to apply to Colonel Buchanan [town named Buchanan VA after him ] for men, between whom and Colo: Stewart there was contention about command.4 As Col. Buchanan lived at Luneys ferry, on James River, 60 miles along the road to Vass’s, on Roanoak, where Captain Hogg was building a fort; to which place I did intend, if I could have got men to range along the Frontiers with me.

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GW Leaving Augusta County Court House with Captain Preston to see Col Buchanan (who the town of Buchanan VA is named after) east of Looney Creek (ferry at Luneys)

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I set out immediately for his house, attended by Captain Preston; who was kind enough to conduct me along, and acquainted the Colonel with the motives that brought me thither. He told me with very great concern, it was not in his power to raise men; for that three days before, some of the militia in a fort, about 15 miles above his house, at the head of Cattawba, commanded by one Colonel Nash, was attacked by the Indians which occasioned all that Settlement to break up totally, even to the ferry at Luneys:5 That he had ordered three companies to repair thither, to march against the enemy, and not one man came, except a Captain, Lieutenant, &c. and 7 or 8 men from Bedford.

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No Men to Join vs Going Back

Finding then that it was impossible to get a party to range and scour the frontiers, it remained only to proceed without men to see the situation of the Forts, or to return back again: the latter I was loth to do, as I had got this far; and was anxious to see what posture of defence they were in. I therefore determined to come forward, at least to Vass’s; and accordingly set out in company with Colonel Buchanan, who being desirous that I might see and relate their unhappy circumstances, undertook to accompany me.

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July 1756 Council of War

held at

Augusta County Courthouse


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Before  GW’s Southern Expedition, Sept 29, 1756 to October 22, 1756 , Two Councils of War held in July 1756, to decide where to build forts.

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Augusta County is most of present day WV and KY when Colonel George Washington did his Southern Tour of inspecting defenses in 1756. The two Northern Counties at the time were Frederick and Hampshire Counties. Colonel George Washington travelled from Winchester Frederick County through the large Augusta County where Daniel Harrison’s fort was and then all the way to Fort Mayo in old Halifax County 5 or 6 miles north of the North Carolina Border. See link to interactive map of the changing county boundaries. Click or Touch to Enlarge.

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Augusta County Courthouse on 27 July 1756 

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Fort Cumberland  10 July 1756 

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After this Colonel George Washington is able to write Lt Gov Dinwiddie he has the orders for constructing these forts handed off to those who will build them. 

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Colonel GW then embarks on this southern tour.

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We have not determined if Captain Daniel Harrison was at this Council of War.

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Council of War

at Augusta Courthouse:

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From Founders Online Footnote:
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Dinwiddie had anticipated GW in this. A manuscript copy of the minutes of a council of war held on 27 July 1756 at Augusta Court House is in DLC:GW.

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Present were colonels

John Buchanan and David Stewart,

Maj. John Brown,

and ten captains,

all officers of the Augusta County militia.

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This document states:

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“Whereas his honour the governor has Sent Repeated orders to the officers of the militia of this County to meet and consult on the most proper places to build forts along the fronteers for the protection of the Inhabitants.

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It is therefore

unanimously agreed

by the said councill

that a fort be built at Peetersons

on the south branch of Potowmack

nigh mill Creek

at some Convenient spot

of ground for a fort,

which is left to the Direction of the officers appointed for that service,

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also anothe⟨r⟩ fort to be built at Hugh mans mill on Sheltons track.

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And Anoth⟨er⟩ fort to be Constructed at the most Convenient place and the pass of ⟨the⟩ Greatest Importance between the above said tract

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and the house of Mathew harper on Bull pasture which is to be built at the Discretion of the officer appointed for that purpose also a fort to be Constructed at mathew harpers on some Convenient spot there,

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and a fort to be Erected at Capt. John millers on Jacksons river.

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and as the fronteers are properly protected by the forts of Capt. Hog, Breckinridge & Dickinson, There is no want of a fort unto the mouth of Johns creek, a Branch of Craigs Creek, at which place a fort is to be Erected and as Fort William is Sufficient to guard that Important pass

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the next Convenient Place South West of fort William is at Neal MacNeals where a fort is ordered to Be Built at or nigh that plantation,

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and the next fort to be Built at Capt. James Campbles

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and a fort is to be Built at Capt. Vauses where a Large Body of men is to be kept as it is a Very Important pass

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also a fort to be Constructed at John masons on the south side of Rounoak.

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“It is Agreed that the Following numbers of Men is nessessary to be placed at Each fort

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Men
At masons fort 30
At Vauses 70
At Campbles Fort 50
At MacNeals fort 30
At fort William 50 Exclusive of officers
At Johns Creek 50
At Capt. Dickinsons 40
At Capt. Breckinridges fort 50
At Capt. millers fort 50
At harpers fort 50
At Trout Rock fort 50
At Hugh mans Mill 50
At Peetersons 50
Dinwiddies 60

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680 men in all to protect the fronteers.

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“It is agreed that the Commanding officers give Orders that Fort Vaus be made at least one hundred feet Square in the Clear and that the Stockades be at least 14 feet Long that all the other forts be made ⟨60⟩ feet Square with Two Bastions in Each fort provided The Same Be agreeable to Capt. Peter hog who is supposed to have his honr the Governor orders to oversee the Constructing of the said Chain of forts The Distance Between Each fort above mentioned or the places agreed for them to be Built on are as follows (viz).

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[Note: This will be the 2nd Fort Vause, since it was attacked and destroyed 25 June 1756] .

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miles
From the County Line to Petersons 2
From Petersons to Hugh mans mill 18
from thence to Trout Rock 17
from Trout Rock to mathew harpers 20
from Thence to Capt. millers 18
from Thence to fort Dinwiddie 15

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From Thence to Capt. Breckinridges fort 13
From Thence To Fort Dickinson 13
From Thence to Johns creek 25
From Thence to Fort William 20
From fort William to Neal MacNeals 13
From Thence to Capt. Campbles 13
From Thence to Capt. Vauses 12
From Thence to John masons 25

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From Thence to the first Inhabitants in halifax County [Fort Mayo] south side of the Ridge 20
By which we find our fronteers Extends 250 [244] Miles in all.”
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Source:
https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/02-03-02-0289#GEWN-02-03-02-0289-fn-0032

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September 22,  1755

GW goes to Augusta Courthouse

then to Fort Dinwiddie


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So, this might be the first time Colonel George Washington travelled by the Daniel Harrison House on his way down the valley to the Augusta Courthouse?

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AUGUSTA COURTHOUSE

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Douglas Southall Freeman writes,

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” As soon, therefore, as he [GW] put affairs in order at Fort Cumberland, Washington started up (as in going upstream) the Shenandoah Valley. past Winchester, and beyond the furthest point he had reached in his surveys of Augusta lands in 1749. By swift hard riding he reached Augusta Court House on the 22nd of September.  . . . By the 25th, George reached Fort Dinwiddie.”

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Page 120 of Volume 2, George Washington A Biography 7 Volumes Hardcover – 1948

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FORT DINWIDDIE

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According to Founders Online footnote:

GW, who was at Fort Cumberland as late as 20 Sept.[1755] , apparently arrived at Fort Dinwiddie on 23 Sept [1755]., presumably after Hog had written his letterGW’s instructions to Hog on 24 Sept[1755]. were his response to many of the points raised here by Hog.

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The next day Colonel George Washington writes as one of his command to Captain Peter Hogg at Fort Dinwiddie:

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And when any of the non-commissioned Officers or Soldiers, should happen to Die; they are to be continued on the Rolls as Effective Men, twenty-eight Days, to pay for their Coffins

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And speaking of Road Work of which the Harrisons were some of the original road builders in this area, Captain Peter Hogg writes to Col GW on 23 Sept 1755:

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I arrived here on the Sunday Evening which Majr Lewis can Inform you was using great dispatch for the badness of the Road.

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Leaving Fort Dinwiddie to go to Alexandria  2 October 1755

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ROAD WORK

IN AUGUSTA COUNTY

By Daniel Harrison and his brothers


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The Wikipedia article mentions the road Daniel Harrison and others were charged to build:

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Captain Harrison was appointed along with brother John and Robert Cravens as overseer by the Court of Orange County in 1745 to lay out and clear the old Indian Road – “The Long Grey Trail” – through what is now Rockingham County.

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No reference is to be found in the House of Burgesses journals, nor in Hening’s Statutes regarding appointing the Harrisons to build roads in old large Augusta County.

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Here is a reference indicating who did what roads in old Augusta County which split out of Orange County in 1738.

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These Harrison brothers are the sons of Isaiah Harrison who landed his family first in Oyster Bay on Long Island NY.

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Source is:

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AUGUSTA COUNTY ROAD ORDERS 1745-1769

by  Nathaniel Mason Pawlett Faculty Research Historian. Ann Brush Miller Research Scientist,  Kenneth Madison Clark Research Associate, and Thomas Llewellyn Samuel, Jr. Research Assistant Virginia Transportation

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http://www.virginiadot.org/vtrc/main/online_reports/pdf/99-r17.pdf

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20 June 1746 O. S., p. 68

Thomas Harrison and Jeremiah Harrison are Appointed Overseers of the Road from Craven.s to

the Indian Road and it.s Ordered that they keep the sd Road in repair According to Law.

And its further Ordered that Capt Scholl lay of their proper precincts & Tithables.

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21 May 1748 O. S., p. 27

Ordered that John Harrison with his gang clear out the road that was formerly blazed by Andrew

Bird and his former gang–

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22 May 1750 O. S., p. 359

Daniel Davison is Appointed Surveyor of the High Way from John Harrisons to the Meeting

House road and it is Ordd. that he Set up Posts of Directions & Clear & keep the Same in repair

According to Law

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28 November 1750 O. S., p. 495

[Grand Jury Presentments]

We Present the Overseers of the Road Over Swift run Gap on the Blue Ridge for not keeping the

Same in Repair on the Information of Henry Downs

We also present the Overseers of the Road from Henry Downs jr to the Stone Meeting House for

being not Sufficient

We Present the Overseers of the Road from George Scots at the Middle River to John Harrisons

not being Sufficient

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1 June 1751 O. S., p. 605

Ordered that Henry Smith and Daniel Harrison mark and lay of a way from the South branch

Road to Swift run Gap and make a Report of their Proceedings to the next Court

Book III, 1751-1753

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27 August 1751 O. S., p. 187

Daniel Harrison and Henry Smith having According to an Order of this Court laid of away from the South branch    (Is this South Branch of Potomac or South Fork of Shenandoah?) to Swift run Pass. It is Ordered that Robert Craven and James Balley be Surveyors of the Same and that the said Harrison lay of their Precincts & appoint the Titheable persons that shall Clear the Same.

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23 March 1753 New Style, p. 430

Ordered that Daniel Harrison Robert Fowler John McGill and David Nelson or any three of them

being first sworn before a Justice of the peace of this County do View and Mark a way from the

Calf Pasture to Swift run pass and report their proceedings to the next Court

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21 November 1760, p. 439

Ordered that John Dunkle and Nicholas Havener they being first sworn Veiw the Ground from

Michael Props to Daniel Harrison.s and make report whether or no a waggon Road Can be had

to the next Court

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19 August 1761, p. 60

Thomas Harrison is hereby Appointed Surveyor of the Highway from Robert Cravens to the fork

of the Road below John Harrisons and It is Ordered that with the Adjacent Tithables he Clear

and keep the same in repair According to Law

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Isaiah Harrison Family Tree

Daniel Harrison is one of his sons


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2 Harrison Presidents in the tree:

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Benjamin Harrison I whose lines led to the 2 Presidents, William Henry Harrison and to Benjamin Harrison, had a brother Reverend Thomas Harrison who is thought to have begot Isaiah Harrison who is known to be the patriarch of our Daniel Harrison and Thomas Harrison (founder of Harrisonburg) and their other brothers and sisters who settled in the Shenandoah Valley.

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Source:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harrison_family_of_Virginia#Harrisons_in_the_Shenandoah_Valley

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Daniel Harrison family tree, land purchases, will.

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The Descendants Of Isaiah Harrison (1666-1738)

On April 20, 1702, Isaiah Harrison sold his entire possession of land at Oyster Bay (on Long Island NY) …

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…  camped near Naked Creek and on Linville’s Creek for about two years, while exploring and preparing to take up land. Sickness broke out among them and it was here that Isaiah Harrison died in 1738. He is said to be buried by the banks of the Shenandoah  in the present “White House” neighborhood. His children and grandchildren explored their way southwesterly and settled in the present vicinity of Harrisonburg, Virginia. Each of the separate families patented land and built houses.

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The children of Isaiah Harrison were as follows:

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By his first wife, Elizabeth Wright:

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    1. Isaiah Harrison, Jr. – b 27 Sept 1689, Oyster Bay, Long Island, NY. He did not go to Virginia with the family; was living in the southern part of West Jersey in 1737. In about 1750, he went to Craven County, South Carolina from Rockingham Co., VA. Nothing more is known of his family, when or where he died.

    2. .
    3. John Harrison – b 25 Sept 1691, Oyster Bay, d May 1771 m Phoebe ??? ca 1720 (b 1686-d 6 Dec 1793). He went with family to Virginia in 1737. His will, dated 30 July 1769, proved 21 May 1771, recorded in Augusta Co., VA names all his children: (Zebulon, John, deceased, Phoebe, Ann and Reuben).

    4. .
    5. Gideon Harrison – b 25 June 1694, Oyster Bay d 1729 Sussex Co., Delaware. He was married, her name is not known.

    6. .
    7. Mary Harrison – b 25 May 1696 d 1781. m Robert Cravens ca 1721.

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    9. Elizabeth Harrison – b 30 March 1689 probably died young.

    10. .

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Elizabeth Wright Harrison died shortly after the birth of her youngest daughter, Elizabeth.

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Children of Isaiah Harrison by his second wife, Abigail Smith:

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  1. Daniel Harrison – b 1701; d 10 July 1770,

  2. m (1) Margaret Cravens m (2) Sarah Stephenson. His will was recorded in Augusta Co., VA. Children by first wife, Margaret were: Robert, Daniel, Jesse, Mary, Jane, Abigail and Benjamin. There were no children by second wife.

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  4. Thomas Harrison – b 1704 at Smithtown, Long Island NY., d 1785, Harrisonburg, VA. He m (1) Jane DeLaHaye and (2) Sarah Cravens. Children (all by second wife): Abigail, Jeremiah, Davis, Robert, John, Thomas, Ezekiel, Reuben and Sarah.

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  6. Jeremiah Harrison – b 1707 at Smithtown, Long Island NY, d 1777 Rockingham Co., Virginia. He m Catherine ???; their children included: Lydia Donnell, Nehemiah, Josiah, Jeremiah, Hester and Benjamin. Little is known of this family.

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  8. Abigail Harrison – b 1710 Smithtown, Long Island NY, d 1780 in VA. She married Alexander Herring, Jr. at Sussex Co., Delaware. She was the great-grandmother of Abraham Lincoln, the President.

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  10. Samuel Harrison – b 1712, Smithtown, Long Island NY, d 1790, Augusta Co., VA. He migrated with the family in 1739. His wife’s name was Mary ???. They moved to Craven Co., South Carolina during the French and Indian War, but returned to Augusta and were residents there by 18 Nov 1762. It is not known if they left any children.

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All of Isaiah Harrison’s children (except Elizabeth) settled in the region around what is now Harrisonburg, VA. The town being founded by son, Thomas Harrison. The five brothers who went with their father in 1739 have been identified as John, Daniel, Thomas, Jeremiah and Samuel.

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Daniel Harrison family tree and land purchases and will.

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And then there’s Abraham Lincoln?

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Sister Abigail  [sister to Daniel Harrison ]  and husband Alexander Herring settled at Linville also. Their daughter Bathsheba (1742–1836) married Captain Abraham Lincoln (1744–1786), also of Linville, and they had a son Thomas Lincoln (1778–1851); he in turn married Nancy Hanks (1783–1818). They had a son, Abraham Lincoln (1809–1865), who was elected president in 1860.

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Sources:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harrison_family_of_Virginia#Isaiah_and_another_president

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https://famouskin.com/pedigree.php?name=7637+abraham+lincoln&ahnum=1

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Heritage Museum

Harrisonburg Rockingham Historical Society

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More Family Tree research ?

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Phone 540-879-2616.. – – – CONTACT US – (Click here for directions, hours, and much more information.)

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Nearby is this museum.  at 382 High Street Dayton VA

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https://heritagecenter.com/

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All this other stuff, but?

What about the house itself?


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We wanted  to provide context.

We wanted to give you an idea of what Daniel Harrison saw and what was going on nearby.

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But,  here’s the file on the house:

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https://www.dhr.virginia.gov/VLR_to_transfer/PDFNoms/206-0001_Fort_Harrison_1984_Final_Nomination.pdf

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The Virginia Dept of Historic Resources:

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https://www.dhr.virginia.gov/historic-registers/206-0001/

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One More Thing about this area –

As if you wanted any more ?


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Shenandoah University

Dayton VA, just a short way southwest of Harrisonburg VA, is the area Shenandoah University got its beginnings in 1874 and moved to Winchester VA in 1960.

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Full of Civil War sites

near by such as the retreat to Port Republic , the spot Turner Ashby was killed, and a skirmish in Mt Crawford, among many.

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Augusta County was Huge+

Click or Touch to Enlarge. See link for interactive map.

Along with Frederick Co, both were carved out of Orange in 1738.  See how large Augusta Co was at one time here in this link.

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And these were the Indian battles in it. 

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See old pictures of the Daniel Harrison House and other places in this area from the Handley Library Archives.

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Source of Rivers

In this county is High Town to the west, the source beginning of many rivers:

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The South Branch of the Potomac River flowing north.  This river has many forts, ordered by Colonel George Washington to be built.

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The Jackson River flowing south.   This river has many forts. Colonel George Washington visited them in 1756.

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Cowpasture River source.

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Rockingham County

was established in 1778 from Augusta County. Harrisonburg was named as the county seat and incorporated as a town in 1780.[12] Harrisonburg was incorporated as a city in 1916 and separated from Rockingham County (all cities in Virginia are independent of any county), but it remains the county seat.[citation needed]

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The county is named for Charles Watson-Wentworth, 2nd Marquess of Rockingham, a British statesman (1730–1782). He was Prime Minister of Great Britain twice, and a keen supporter of constitutional rights for the colonists. During his first term, he brought about the repeal of the Stamp Act of 1765, reducing the tax burden on the colonies. Appointed again in 1782, upon taking office, he backed the claim for the independence of the Thirteen Colonies, initiating an end to British involvement in the American Revolutionary War. However, he died after only 14 weeks in office.[citation needed] By 1778, it was unusual to honor British officials in Virginia, fighting for its independence. The same year, immediately to the north of Rockingham County, Dunmore County, named for Virginia’s last Royal Governor, John Murray, 4th Earl of Dunmore, an unpopular figure, was renamed. The new name, Shenandoah County, used a Native American name.[citation needed] However, long their political supporter in the British Parliament, the Marquess of Rockingham was a popular figure with the citizens of the new United States. Also named in his honor were Rockingham County, New Hampshire, Rockingham County, North Carolina, and the City of Rockingham in Richmond County, North Carolina.[

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Source:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rockingham_County,_Virginia#History

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Research Notes


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The following is research.  This research indicates but does not prove that George Washington travelled this way in September and October of 1756 and later in 1784.

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Henry Harrison, who replaced his brother Carter Henry Harrison as captain of one of the companies in the Virginia Regiment in December 1755, remained in the regiment until GW reorganized it in May 1757.

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https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/02-03-02-0016

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1. Smith was probably Jeremiah Smith (died c.1787), a captain in the Frederick County militia who was sometimes employed by GW as the leader of scouting parties. Smith’s plantation was on Back Creek where the wagon road from Winchester crossed on the way to Joseph Edwards’s on the Cacapon.

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https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/02-03-02-0040

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Daniel Harrison House, also known as Fort Harrison, is a historic home located near Dayton, Rockingham County, Virginia. It was built in 1748, and is a two-story, three bay limestone dwelling with a brick extension added in the early 1800s. It has a steep gable roof and wide chimney caps. It was originally surrounded by a palisade and stories of an underground passage to the nearby spring. During the French and Indian War, the legislature of Virginia designed the house “Fort Harrison.” The house is one of the oldest in the Shenandoah Valley, and is closely associated with the early history of Rockingham County.[3]

Captain Daniel Harrison was one of the first to use the plentiful supply of limestone for building. His stone house is referred to in one of his first deeds dated February 28, 1749 in Rockingham County Deed Book 2, p. 586 – “Daniel Harrison, Gent. to Arthur Johnson, 190 acres; 10 acres; Cook’s Creek–Harrison’s stonehouse”. Captain Harrison was appointed along with brother John and Robert Cravens as overseer by the Court of Orange County in 1745 to lay out and clear the old Indian Road – “The Long Grey Trail” – through what is now Rockingham County. This was destined to be the most traveled highway in the Shenandoah Valley. In 1751 Daniel became Under Sheriff of Augusta County[4]

Fort Harrison is open to the public on Friday and Saturday in the summer and by appointment.

It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.[1]

Because Daniel Harrison was Under Sheriff of Augusta County which made a visit to the Augusta Courthouse necessary, then

 

Maybe Colonel George Washington and he crossed paths for 3 reasons in 1756:

as overseer by the Court of Orange County in 1745 to lay out and clear the old Indian Road – “The Long Grey Trail” – through what is now Rockingham County. This was destined to be the most traveled highway in the Shenandoah Valley.

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interesting link

https://www.loc.gov/collections/george-washington-papers/?fa=segmentof%3Amgwd.wd04%2F&st=gallery&sb=shelf-id&c=80

[Diary entry: 30 September 1784]

 

https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/01-04-02-0001-0001-0029

  1. 2. Jane Harrison Smith (1735–1796), widow of Daniel Smith (1724–1781), lived at Smithland plantation about two miles northeast of Harrisonburg, Va.

The eldest daughter of Capt. Daniel Harrison,

she married Smith in 1751

and subsequently gave birth to at least 12 children.

Her husband was a justice of Augusta County until 1777 and of Rockingham County after that date. He served as a captain at the Battle of Point Pleasant in 1774, became county lieutenant of Rockingham in Mar. 1781, and died in the fall of that year from injuries sustained when his horse threw him during a militia review in celebration of the Yorktown victory (HARRISON [7] description begins J. Houston Harrison. Settlers by the Long Grey Trail: Some Pioneers to Old Augusta County, Virginia, and Their Descendants, of the Family of Harrison and Allied Lines. 1935. Reprint. Baltimore, 1975. description ends , 200, 245, 318–19).

 

His wife was Jane Harrison, sister of Benjamin Harrison, of Rockingham

Jane Harrison “Jane Harrison , (1735-1796) the eldest daughter of Capt. Daniel Harrison, Sr. and 1st wife Margaret, was born in Delaware, and in childhood brought by her parents to Augusta, later Rockingham County, Virginia, where, about 1751, she married Daniel Smith, the son of Capt. John Smith

https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Harrison-1163

 

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Biography

“Daniel Smith, son of John, was for some time presiding justice of the County Court of Augusta. In 1776, he was Captain of the Militia. When Rockingham County was organized in 1778, he was one of the first justices of the peace. He was appointed also Colonel of Militia and one of the coroners. The first County Court of Rockingham was held at his house. His wife was Jane Harrison, sister of Benjamin Harrison, of Rockingham. On the return of the troops from Yorktown, the victory was celebrated by the military of Rockingham at a grand review in Nov 1781. Colonel Smith’s horse, taking fright at the firing, sprang aside, and spraining his rider’s back, caused death in a few days. Three of his sons participated in the siege of Yorktown: 1. John, father of the late Judge Daniel Smith; 2. Daniel, who was also at Pt. Pleasant; and 3. Benjamin, father of Benjamin Harrison Smith, of Kanawha.” Posted 31 Aug 2010 by dmppmp

Jane Harrison “Jane Harrison , (1735-1796) the eldest daughter of Capt. Daniel Harrison, Sr. and 1st wife Margaret, was born in Delaware, and in childhood brought by her parents to Augusta, later Rockingham County, Virginia, where, about 1751, she married Daniel Smith, the son of Capt. John Smith, the immigant frequently referred to on former pages. Daniel Smith and his wife, Jane, settled at historic Smithland, on the early “Great Road,” a short distance north of present Harrisonburg. (pg 238) The land, 660 acres had been patented by Capt. Daniel harrison, and his son Robert, and was purchased by Daniel Smith, 22nd November, 1764, from his brother, Abraham, who had purchased it from Robert Harrison’s executors. At various times, Daniel Smith served as one of the justices of Augusta court, his last term ending with the formation of Rockingham County For many years, until October 1777, he was a member of the Courtmartial for West Augusta district. In the battle of “Point Pleasant, he was a Captain under Gen. Andrew Lewis, and is mentioned by Waddell as of this rank in 1776. In 1775 he was a member fo the “Third Virginia Convention. On September 20th, 1781, he was commissioned Deputy Purveyor”, Southern Department, in the Revolutionary Army. Upon the formation of Rockingham County, he was one of the first justices and was commissioned Colonel of the militia. On the 25 May, 1778, he took the Oath of fidelity to the State as Vestryman. On March 26, 1781, he took the oath as County Lieutenant of Rockingham. Being one of the wealthiest men of his day in the county, his house was probably the most commodious, and in it, at the order of Virginia Assembly, was held the first Court of Rockingham County. It was here that his father died, in 1779, of the “dangerously malignant Fever,” mentioned the old Court Order Book.”

https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Harrison-1163

 

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18- Daniel Smith, a younger brother of Abraham, was a captain of

militia in 1776, and in 1778 was one of the first justices of Rockingham,

being presiding justice at the time of his death in 1781. He lived at

Smithland, two miles below Harrisonburg, and the first sessions of the

county court were held at his house. His wife was Jane Harrison. He

had been a justice in Augusta County, and had held the office of sheriff

in that county. When the troops returned from Yorktown, in the fall of

1781, he was colonel of militia, and was thrown from his horse and fatally

injured in the grand review held in Rockingham to celebrate the victory.

See Waddell’s Annals of Augusta, pp. 150-152.

https://archive.org/stream/historyofrocki00wayl/historyofrocki00wayl_djvu.txt

‘Smithland, ” now the residence of Geo. W. Liskey, stands on the southeast side of the Valley Pike, just a mile or two below Harrisonburg. It is one of the finest old country homesteads in many a mile. Situated near the brow of a lofty eminence, it commands a splendid view of vales, hills, and distant mountains. At the sharp turn of the pike just below the house, on the high bank at the left-hand side, the site of an old building may still be discerned: there, tradition says, the first justices of the county sat in their initial sessions.  At the same time that Smithland was selected as the temporary seat of justice, it was ordered that Daniel Smith and Josiah Davidson be empowered to contract with some person for building a “square Log Jayl or prison 12 feet square, laid with square Logs above & below, 8 inches thick at the least, with one Window & a Door made of Iron barrs so as to suit the public Jayl when built, with a good Lock & a Cabin rooff over the upper flour, to be fixed on the most con- venient spott of the sd. Daniel Smith’s plantation, and in the meantime that the Sheriff be empowered to hire a Guard to watch such prisoners as are taken into his Custody.”  After this action the court was adjourned to the next monthly session.  The minutes of the second day are signed by Daniel

Smith. It is likely that he or Peter Hog made the entries

the pages that are now yellow with age and worn with much

handling.

 

The second court for Rockingham County was held on

Monday, the 25th of May, 1778.

 

Among other transactions, Josiah Davidson was sworn

in as sheriff, under a commission from the governor dated

May 7, 1778; GabrielJones was appointed deputy attorney for

the commonwealth for Rockingham County, with a salary of

£40 a year.

 

Under commissions from the governor, Abram Smith

took an oath as County Lieutenant; Daniel Smith, as Colonel;

Benjamin Harrison, as Lieut. -Colonel; William Nalle, as

Major.

 

 

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.Harrison’s cave   mentions weyer’s cave

 

CHAPTER XXIV.

NATURAL CURIOSITIES.

 

First, let us take a walk through some of the underground

palaces. Rockingham has a dozen or more beautiful caves.

 

In point of discovery, Harrison’s Cave, six miles north-

east of Harrisonburg, is perhaps the oldest. Few persons in

the county now know of its existence. I found a reference

to it in Kercheval’s old history of the Valley, and, upon

inquiry, succeeded in locating it. It was discovered by David

Harrison (born in 1775), and is in a cedar-covered rocky hill

a short distance northeast of Melrose, and a few hundred

yards west of the Valley Pike. The hill is in plain sight

from the pike, and is a part of the farm of Mr. Thos. A.

Moore.

 

Wednesday afternoon, September 20, 1911, 1 visited Har-

rison’s Cave. My guide was Mr. Daniel Harrison, a grandson

of the man who found the cave, so many years ago. William

Harrison, a son of David, put a building over the entrance,

but this went into decay before the civil war, and now the

opening is altogether without protection. In fact, we had

some difficulty in getting down the first ten feet, so much

mud and so many leaves had washed in ahead of us.

 

Once in, there was plenty of room. Several of the

apartments are very large. One room, near the end, is

larger in circumference, I think, than any room in any other

cave I have visited except, perhaps, the Grand Cathedral in

Weyer’s. The ceiling, however, is not higher than 15 or 20

feet.

 

Vandals have defaced Harrison’s Cave shamefully— have

broken off tons of stalactites; and the smoke from candles

and torches has blackened the whole interior; yet in spite of

all this it is a great wonder, and presents many striking

 

 

Descendants of John Smith, Sr.

Generation No. 1

  1. COLONEL JOHN1 SMITH, SR. was born 1698 in England, and died 1776 in Smithland, Rockingham, VA. He

married MARGARET 1719 in Ulster, Ireland. She was born 1700 in Holland, and died 1774 in Smithland,

Rockingham, VA.

Notes for COLONEL JOHN SMITH, SR.:

“Capt. John Smith born 1698, in England, settled with his parents in Province of Ulster, Ireland; is said to have

been a Colonel of the British Army, and married in 1719 to Margaret, immigrated to America about 1730 with his

wife & children, settled, 1st in Chester Co. PA about 1740 moved with the McDowells and others, to what is now

Augusta Co. VA, then Orange Co. and on 26 Jun 1740 proved the importance of himself, his wife Margaret, &

their sons Abraham, Henry, Daniel, John & Joseph from the colony of Pennsylvania 26 Jun 1742, John Smith

qualified at Orange Court House as Captain of the Militia for Augusta Co.

As a protection against the inroads of Indians. He had several crude forts, or block houses, constructed in the

Valley, one of which was in the county of Botetourt, on the James River, where Pattonsburg was subsequently

located. These forts became the scene of memorable events. Capt. John Smith, with 17 men, held a fort

 

 

https://www.ncgenweb.us/richmond/johnsmith.pdf

 

Harrison family research

http://freepages.rootsweb.com/~harrisonrep/genealogy/hhdocs/82dechh.htm

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This beautifully restored home was built around 1749 by Daniel Harrison, Dayton’s first settler. Daniel was the brother of Thomas Harrison, the founder of Harrisonburg. This site will provide excellent insight into what life was like on the frontier in the mid 18th Century. It is often referred to as Fort Harrison due to the fact that the sturdy building often provided refuge from Native American attacks during the earliest settlements of the Valley.

http://www.shenandoahatwar.org/visit/signature-tours/harrisonburg-tour-ii/fort-harrison/

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Peter Hogg

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Hog remained at Fort Dinwiddie from Sept. 1755 until after GW ordered him on 21 July 1756 to take charge of building a chain of forts along the frontier below Dinwiddie. While still in command at Fort Dinwiddie, Hog took his company on Andrew Lewis’s unsuccessful Sandy Creek expedition against the Shawnee towns, in Feb. and Mar. 1756.

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https://founders.archives.gov/?q=Date%3A1755-09-06&s=1111311111&r=2

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https://www.dhr.virginia.gov/historic-registers/206-0001/

 

https://www.dhr.virginia.gov/VLR_to_transfer/PDFNoms/206-0001_Fort_Harrison_1984_Final_Nomination.pdf

 

During the French and Indian

numerous acts for the defense

substantial houses were designated as “forts”. This house was one of these

and was known as “Fort Harrison1′. Originally it was surrounded by a palisade 1

and stories of an underground passage to the nearby spring have long existed. !

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The brick extension to the north which was constructed in the early 1800’s

contains s i x rooms with a boxed staircase which ascends to the a t t i c in the

stone section. There are four significant fireplaces i n t h i s section with

original mantels. The mantels and s t a i r in the stone section are not

original but were added during the renovation in the l a t e 1800’s. The stone

walls also were stuccoed a t that time. The window casings in the brick

section are tapered and very fine in their execution. The windows in the

stone section were enlarged in the renovation. Floors and doors may be origj

although the locks have been changed. A l a t e r front porch has since been

removed.

The original house was b u i l t of limestone with two foot thick walls. It

contained four rooms and center hall with end chimneys serving fireplaces in

each room. The limestone chimneys here are not a part of the wall constructi~n

but are separate units. There i s no evidence of a cellar to this house at

present and whether one ever existed i s undetermined. It i s probable that

other f a c i l i t i e s were housed within the fort in other buildings which no

longer exist.

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The stone and brick sections of this house are in a bad s t a t e of deterioratic

and have been deemed unsafe for occupancy. Despite the alterations the house

maintains i t s early p r o f i l e with steep gable roof and wide chimney caps.

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The austere Daniel Harrison House is one of the oldest houses in the

Shenandoah Valley, and is closely associated with the e a r l y h i s t o r y of

Rockingham County. The builder, Daniel Harrison (1701-1770) was t h e e l d e s t

son of Isaiah Harrison and his second wife, Abigail Smith. The Harrisons

came to America around 1688 and s e t t l e d a t Oyster Bay, Long Island. They

l a t e r migrated to Sussex County, Delaware, and then moved into Rockingham

County around 1738. Daniel Harrison s e t t l e d near the headwaters of Cook’s

Creek, i n the v i c i n i t y of the present v i l l a g e of Dayton, and b u i l t his

massive stone house between 1746 and 1749. The house became a center of

f r o n t i e r l i f e and served as a defensive s t r u c t u r e during the French and

Indian War,at which time it was designated “Fort Harrison”. The Vestry of

Augusta Parish authorized a Chapel of Ease a t “Daniel Harrison’s Plantation

with Anglican services being held e i t h e r i n the house or an adjacent

s t r u c t u r e . Nearby, Harrison operated a g r i s t m i l l , d i s t i l l e r y , and general

store.

Daniel Harrison, his brothers and descendants were men of prominence

i n Rockingham County. The c i t y of Harrisonburg was named for Thomas

Harrison, a brother. Daniel Harrison’s son, Benjamin Harrison (1741-1819),

commanded a company of Augusta County troops a t t h e B a t t l e of Point Pleasan

and also commanded Rockingham County m i l i t i a units during the Revolution.

A grandson, Peachy Harrison (1777-1851) was a prominent physician, as was

his son, Peachy Rush Harrison. Another of Peachy Harrison sons, Gessner

.Harrison (1807-1862),was a prominent educator, and served for many years

as professor of ancient languages a t the University of Virginia.

The house remained in the Harrison family through succeeding generatio

for a hundred y e a r s , i n h e r i t e d f i r s t by Benjamin Harrison in 1819, and then

Peachy Harrison in 1848. In 1849 it became the property of John Allebaugh,

aild i n 1856 it was purchased by J. N. Liggett. In 1866 it was purchased by

William H. and Solomon Burtner. Solomon Burtner became sole owner in 1870,

and under hh the house was altered extensively. The i n t e r i o r was largely

r e b u i l t , the windows altered, and the stonework stuccoed. The house was

purchased by the present owner, E. L. Koogler, i n 1917.

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unrelated note.

is this the Ambrose of Fort Frederick?

https://founders.archives.gov/?q=Date%3A1755-10-02&s=1111311111&r=3

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