|Edward Boone, Family Man
By Rochelle Evans Cochran, (Rochelle@cablelynx.com) 5th G
Granddaughter of Edward & Martha Bryan Boone, and President of The Boone Society, Inc.
The Wilderness Trail,
illustration by James Daugherty, from the book, Daniel Boone: Wilderness Scout by
Stewart Edward White, 1922, p. 142
I like to think this picture also depicts Edward
Boone and his family as they accompanied other Boone family members from NC through the
Cumberland Gap, up to Boone Station in 1779. I even imagine the woman on the black mare
holding the Bible is my "5th great grandma" Martha Bryan Boone and
the man guiding her horse is her husband Edward Boone. The young red-haired woman is my 4th
great grandma, Jane Boone, (I, too, have red hair) and the young mother holding the baby
is Charity Elledge, Edward & Marthas oldest child.
|It has long been understood that Edward Boone looked like his older brother,
Daniel. (Draper Mss. 2C53). Edward and Daniel married sisters, Martha and Rebecca Bryan,
but the brothers similarities may have ended there.
While Daniel was off exploring the woods and cutting
new trails, Edward stayed home with his family in Wilkes County, North Carolina. Edward
and Martha had six children, Charity b. 1760, Jane b. 1762, Mary b. 1764, George b. 1767,
Joseph b. 1768, and Sarah b. 1771. It was during these years until 1779 that Edward was a
community and church leader in NC.
He served on juries, was a road
surveyor, a tax collector, and a constable. (Wilkes Co. Court Minutes, June 1778)
Although for many years the Boones had been Quakers,
Edward was baptized in the Mulberry Fields Branch of the Dutchman Creek Baptist Church,
Jan. 22, 1774. It was said he loved to sing. He served his church as a deacon and a clerk
(Draper 23C10). He was "called Ned by his family and friends," says his grandson
Edward Boone Scholl, and Edward Boone "was "a peace man." (Draper
On September 9, 1779, Edward entered 200 acres of
land "lying on Beavers Creek adjoining to Thos. Henderson Beginning and running so as
to include his improvements." (Wilkes Co. Land Entry Book N. p. 393)
Only about a month later, in October 1779 he made
that fateful decision to move his family to Kentucky with Daniel who was leading a large
party of family members there for the promise of free land.
Edward and Martha hastily gathered their family and
all their belongings and joined the other family members from NC. In Draper Ms. 23C17.4,
Edward Boone Scholl said, "Edward Boone packed 22 horses in addition to the ones the
They traveled through the Cumberland Gap, up the
Wilderness Trail, and settled at Boone Station not far from Ft. Boonesborough, arriving
December 22, 1779. Fifteen other family members shared the station. (Draper letter from
Edwards daughter, Sarah, Mss. 22C55)
Gerald E. Collins in his book "Edward Boone
(1740-1780), p. 7, says "The Virginia government had authority to issue land
certificates for 400 acres where a settlers right of occupation was established.
Hearings began October 13, 1779. If the settlers in NC were to receive valid land claims,
it was imperative that they return to Kentucky and submit their claim. Thus a large group
from NC set out for Kentucky in October 1779. The exodus was described by one man as like
an army movement, and when they camped for the night, would be in a string a half-mile
After meeting with the Virginia Land Commission,
Daniel Boone, his brother, Squire and his son, Israel, established their claims and were
granted lands by the commission
Edward apparently did not receive any land.
He continued living at Boone Station, caring for his
family and hunting for food to also share with the Bryan family at Bryan Station. Joseph
Bryan was his father-in-law and one of the founders of Bryan Station.
Because the area of Boone Station
was so remote and traveling to the county seat was dangerous at best, Edward was one of
the signers on May 1, 1780, of Petition #12 that resulted in splitting Kentucky County,
Virginia, into 3 counties: Jefferson, Fayette, and Lincoln. Part of the petition reads, "That the Militia Inhabitants of the north side of Kaintucky amount
to about 400 with 11 fortified posts
that the nearest settlement to the Courthouse
is at least 40 miles and the farthest about 70 miles
that the River Kentuckey is
rendered impassable half the year by high waters & is ever inconvenient and Dangerous
" The petition was approved by
the Virginia Legislature.
Edward had lived in Kentucky less than a year when
on October 6, 1780, he was killed by Indians (probably Shawnee) while he and Daniel were
returning from the Blue Licks to make salt and do a little hunting.
They stopped along a stream in Bourbon County to
rest and let their horses drink. Edward sat down by the stream near an old Buckeye tree
and was cracking nuts, while Daniel went off into the woods in pursuit of game.
Indians lurking nearby shot and
killed Edward but Daniel managed to escape. He ran all the way on foot to Boone Station
(about 40 miles) where they were all living at the time. The next morning Daniel and a
party of men in the area went in search of Edwards killers. They did not find the
Indians, but found and buried Edward near that old Buckeye tree.
Today in that very spot stands an old Buckeye tree,
perhaps grown from a seedling of the original tree. The creek was afterward named Boone
Creek in honor of Edwards death there. As Jeff Johnson, a descendant of Edward
Boone, says of the death site, "the bubbling sounds of the stream running over the
rocks is probably the last sounds Edward heard as he lay dying."
Neds daughter, Sarah Boone Hunter, in a letter
to Draper (22C60) said "My father was killed 40 miles from the Station. He was
stabbed in 7 places; his fingers were horribly cut with the Indians knife. He was
scalped and part of his clothing were taken off. I think his coat and pantaloons."
Although still a young woman, Martha never remarried
and remained in Kentucky until her death.
In 1782, two years after Edwards death, the
last battle of the Revolutionary War in Kentucky was fought, known as the Battle of Blue
Licks. Wanting to help the Americans in defending their home, property and lives
against the British-supported Indians, the widow Martha Boone gave her black mare to
Daniel Boone. According to Draper Ms. 6S 163-64-65, in a letter from Daniel Boones
son Nathan, "
That Col. Boone got the widow Edward Boones horse
and gave it to Israel to ride it and rode off.
Col. Boone hearing something looked
as he was within a few yards of his son who had said, "father, I
wont leave you" & the Colonel told him to make his escape and he would find
a horse & he supposed he had gone & then saw him falling the blood gushing
from his mouth
seized the same horse he had provided for his hapless son and rode
off a platoon shot near him and down fell a forked branch across his horses
neck but he escaped."
The Edward Boone
burial site is located 1/2 mile from the marker up See Road on the right side, in front of
the house at 870 See Road
Evans Cochran and Dell Boone Ariola April 2001, Kentucky Historical Marker No. 2059,
corner of KY Highway 537 & See Road, Bourbon County.
Marker provided by The Boone Society, Inc.
Image to Enlarge
Martha Boone gave her black mare to Daniel Boone
According to another letter to Lyman Draper (Mss. 22C60.2) from
Edward & Marthas daughter, Sarah Hunter, "His son Israel was the first
killed in Blue Lick battle who fell at his (Daniel Boones) side. Very few escaped.
Daniel Boone noticed a youth by the name of Daniel Hodgens and says to him
you remind me of my son who just a few minutes ago fell from my side. Daniel
Boones horse was shot. As he stood in the midst of the battle & confusion,
having no means of escape, suddenly he heard the noise of a horse in full speed coming
toward him he saw that it was his (Israels) Aunt Marthas (my
mothers) noble black mare. He hollowed "whoo!" She stopped immediately. He
leaped into the saddle and
escaped." So, Grandma Marthas horse saved
Daniel Boones life!
On September 13, 1791, Martha purchased 100 acres of
land on Boones Creek in Fayette County, on that part of Fayette that became Clark
County on February 1, 1793. Three months later, Martha Boones will was written July
23, 1793, and is recorded in Clark County.
Martha lived on the land she purchased with her two
sons, George and Joseph. The 1792 Fayette County tax list showed her son George Boone
taxed for the 100 acres of land just purchased by Martha Boone in 1791. The brother Joseph
Boone, probably still recovering from a leg wound, also lived on the property, because he
was listed adjacent to his brother George. The mother Martha Boone was not listed in that
tax list as she was living with her son George, named as the head of household. (Gerald E.
Collins, Edward Boone, 1740-1780, p. 11)
Martha died in 1793 soon after writing her will.
Draper manuscripts 6S296-297 indicate that
"about 1827, the bones of Edward Boone became exposed to view where they were buried,
in the road, by washing of water, near the bank of the creek, and close to the spring, and
the Rev. Richard Thomas had them removed and re-interred a mile off in the Rockbridge
Baptist Church yard."
In the summer of 1997 Dell Boone Ariola, husband
Ken, and grandson Bryan almost literally stumbled upon Edwards gravestone that was
erected c. 1920 in Bourbon County, Kentucky, by the Children of the American Revolution, a
part of the Daughters of the American Revolution chapter in Paris, KY. Dell contacted
Rochelle E. Cochran and Russell Lain Ready, descendants of Edward Boone, and the Edward
Boone Memorial Committee of the Boone Society was formed.
The Edward Boone Memorial Committee met property
owners, Ron and Phyllis Isaac (870 See Road near Paris, KY), and discussed ideas about
restoring, protecting, and marking this historic site. The Isaacs were not only supportive
but also were very excited about the project and provided land for visitor parking; cut
grass and underbrush. Bourbon County Judge Donnie Foley provided grading for parking. To
protect the grave, Master Stonemason Stanley Matherly donated his time and specialized
talent to build the precision-laid flat-rock, dry-wall of the type built in the
mid-1800s (using local native flat rocks and no cement or mortar).
Isaac installed an iron gate to protect the original
marker. There was a lot of local interest in the project and neighbors donated time and
equipment to prepare the site. This historic site is visited by school students in the
area and descendants and tourists from all across the country.
In May 1998 the Edward Boone Death Site was
designated a Kentucky Landmark by the Kentucky Heritage Council. Then in 2001 a Kentucky
Historical Highway Marker was installed and dedicated at the corner of KY Highway 537
& See Road, about a mile east of Little Rock, KY. The marker stands on the front yard
property of Paul Lyon. The grave is about ¾-mile north on See Road.
The Boone Society, Inc., paid for the historical
marker through donations to the project. No state funds or tax dollars were used, although
the Kentucky State Historical Society approved it and the State Highway Cabinet installed
the marker (#2059).
Queries about Edward Boone are welcome.
MAPS TO THE EDWARD BOONE DEATH/BURIAL SITE
(Click Image to Enlarge
Chronology - Edward Boone
& copyright July 2003 by Rochelle Evans Cochran, 5th great granddaughter of
Edward & Martha Bryan Boone)
19, 1740 Date of birth Oley Township, Philadelphia County, PA.(todays
Berks County) (a)(b)
At age 10, Edward moved with his family to the Yadkin District of NC (Anson County at that
1753 Rowan formed from Anson
1759 Married Martha Bryan, (probably
Rowan County) (e)(f)
1759 Listed on Rowan County Tax rolls
October 4, 1760 daughter
Charity born, Rowan County (f)
18, 1762 daughter, Jane, was born, Rowan County (f)(g)
13, 1764 Rowan Co. Court paid Edward & Daniel for one wolf each & Joseph Bryan
(their father-in-law) for one cat. (h)
5, 1764 daughter Mary was born, Rowan
2, 1765 his father, Squire Boone died; buried Joppa Cemetery, Mocksville Davie Co., NC
28 1767 son George was born, Rowan County
1768 son Joseph was born, Rowan County
Surry was formed from Rowan County
listed on Surry Co., Tax Rolls
6, 1771 daughter Sarah was born, Surry
County (j) (p)
2, 1773 there is a warrant dated October 2, 1773, for a land survey for a
600-acre tract for him on both sides of Sugar Creek joining Evan Ellis.(k)
22, 1774 Baptized in the Mulberry Field Baptist Church, a branch of Dutchmans
Creek (Eatons) Baptist Church. (l)
Death of his mother, Sarah Morgan Boone (Joppa Cemetery, Mocksville)
Wilkes County was formed from Surry
1778 Listed on Wilkes County tax rolls
3, 1778 Wilkes Co., appointed Assessor,
Captain Fosters District. (m)
4, 1778, Wilkes Co., called as Juror for September 1778 court. (m)
1779, Wilkes Co., paid 2.00 for assessor in 1778. (m)
1779, Wilkes Co., Edward Boone was appointed to view way around Isbell Plantation to
see if a convenient way could be found for a publick road to be built. (m)
9, 1779 Wilkes Co., NC Land entry for 200 acres on Beaver Creek (n)
1779 Edward took his family and joined brother Daniel and others on their move to
Kentucky through the Cumberland Gap. (o)
1779 Arrived in Kentucky & settled family at Boone Station. (p)
1, 1780 Signed petition #12 for Division of Kentucky Co., VA, into 3 counties: Fayette, Jefferson & Lincoln. (q)
6, 1780 Killed by Indians in Bourbon Co, KY, while with brother Daniel, near
present-day community of Little Rock. Edward
was buried beneath an old Buckeye Tree where he was shot.
The address of the grave today is 870 See Road, ½ mile north of the junction of KY
Hwy. 537 & See Road. The nearby creek
thereafter was named Boone Creek in honor of Edwards death there. He left his widow, Martha Bryan Boone, and six
children: Charity, Jane, Mary, George,
Joseph, Sarah. (r) (s) (t) (u)
1930 the Children of the American Revolution, a branch of the Jemima Johnson Chapter
of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) in Paris, Kentucky, erected a tombstone
at the death/burial site of Edward Boone in Bourbon County, KY. (v) (w)
20, 1998 the Bourbon County death/burial site was recognized a Kentucky Landmark by
the Kentucky Heritage Council. (x)
23, 2001 Honoring the memory of Edward Boone, Kentucky Highway Historical Marker No.
2059 was dedicated by the Boone Society, Kentucky Historical Society, and the Kentucky
Transportation Cabinet. Marker is located at
junction of KY Hwy. 537 & See Road. The
text of the marker reads: #2059, Edward Boone (1740-80) Death site of Edward Boone, a brother of renowned
Kentucky pioneer Daniel Boone. Edward was
killed by Indians here Oct. 1780 at age 40 while hunting with Daniel. Boone Creek named for Edward. Daniel and Edward wed sisters, Rebecca and Martha
Bryan, whose family built and settled Bryan Station near Lexington. Presented by The Boone
Society, Inc. (y)
(a)The Boone Family
by Hazel Atterbury Spraker, p. 38 her source:
Exeter Meeting Records.
(b) The Boone Family,
Spraker, p. 33, Squire and his family settled on a farm in Oley Township,
Philadelphia County (now Exeter Township, Berks County) not far from the homestead of his
father, George Boone III, both being only a few miles from present city of Reading. This property Squire Boone bought from Ralph
Asheton of the City of Philadelphia the 20th day of November 1730. Nine of their children were born on this farm, the
first three having been born previous to the purchase of this property.
(c) The Boone Family,
Spraker, p. 36, April 11, 1750, Squire and Sarah conveyed their farm of 158 acres in
Exeter Township to William Maugridge, 14 days before they set out for North
Carolina. Sprakers source: Family record among some old papers
deposited with Berks County Historical Society by Mortimer I. Montgomery.
(d) LAND ENTRY, October 4,
1750, Anson County, NC, a warrant to admeasure and lay out unto Squire Boone a
plantation containing 640 acres of land lying in Anson County upon Grants Creek,
alias Lichon Creek (today known as Elisha Creek) by James Child and Francis Corbin, Esqrs.
Agents and Commissioners of the Right Honourable the Earl Granville, &c. (NC Archives S.108.270, records of Granville
Proprietary Land Office Entries & Warrants 1748-1763.
In Sec. of State Granville Deeds & Plats (Film SS.I.G.112 G, the related plat
& issuance of the land is found. The land
was surveyed Jan 18th, 1750/51. Squire Boon is named as Chainer
indicating he was there walking the land in 1850/51.
The land was not issued until 13 Apr 1753.
(e) The Boone Family,
Spraker, p. 70
(f) Edward Boone
(1740-1780) by Gerald E. Collins, p. 6, and also p. ii, Collins reports
Charitys, Janes, and Marys birthdates were found in a notebook compiled
by Peter Scholl (b.1809-d.1872), filed as Mss. 400 in Oregon Historical Society Library,
1230 SW Park Avenue, Portland, OR 97205.
(g) Old Morgan Bible records
published in Be It Known & Remembered, Bible Records Vol. One, 1960.
Louisiana Genealogical and Historical Society, P. 152.
(h) Rowan County, NC,
Minutes of Court of Coommon Pleas & Quarter Sessions, 176301774, Vol II, p. 552.
(i) Tombstone, Joppa
Cemetery, Mocksville, NC
(j) Original old tombstone,
Dry Valley Presbyterian Cemetery, Putnam, TN
(k) The pamphlet, The
Squire, Daniel & John Boone Families in Davie County, NC compiled by James W.
Wall, Flossie Martin and Howell Boone. (Today Sugar Creek is in Wilkes County, but it may
have been Surry County at that time.) The
pamphlet also states, There is no record of Edwards having owned land in Davie
(l) Copy of church minutes
received from Davie County Public Library, Mocksville, NC:
Dutchman Creek Baptist Church records of 1772-1778. Original records microfilmed for NC State
Archives. Baptist Church records have been
collected and are stored in the library of Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem. According to Davie County librarian,
Mulberry Fields Road is in the lower edge of Yadkin County near the Davie County
border, and Mulberry Fields community is in Wilkes County.
(m) Wilkes County, NC, Court
(n) Wilkes County, NC, Land
Entry Book N. p. 393
(o) Edward Boone
(1740-1780) by Gerald E. Collins, p. 7
(p) Letter from Sarah Boone
Hunter to Lyman Draper, October 6, 1855, Draper Mss 22C54-55.
(q) Petition submitted to
General Assembly of Virginia May 1, 1780
(r) Letter to Lyman Draper
from John Scholl, grandson of Edward and son of Peter Scholl and Mary Boone, daughter of
Edward. Draper Mss. 22S269 & 270.
(s) Nathan Boone, son of
Daniel, reported on Edwards death to Draper, Mss. 31C100-101.
(t) Daniel Bryan, son of
William Bryan and Mary Boone, Draper Mss.31C101-102.
(u) Joshua Pennington, son
of Edwardsister Hannah, 1854 Draper Mss. 23C43
(v) The Kentuckian
Citizen, Paris, KY, December 12, 1958, pp 12-13, Circumstances Surrounding Death
and Burial of Edward Boone, Brother of Famed Frontier Explorer.
(w) Records of Jemima
Johnson Chapter of DAR, reported in The Fayette County (Kentucky) Genealogical Society
Quarterly, Vol. 12, No. 4, Winter 1997.
(x) Letter and certificate
from Davie I. Morgan, Director of Kentucky Heritage Council, May 20, 1998. Certificate signed by Honorable Paul E. Patton,
Governor the Commonwealth of Kentucky.
(y) April 23, 2001, Program
from dedication of Kentucky Highway Historical Marker No. 2059