A Petition of Pioneer Settlers of Greenbrier County

September 19th, 1781

(including what is now Putnam County)


The petition of sundry inhabitants of the County of Green Brier, Humbly Showeth,

That during the time a Garrison was maintained at Fort Randolph (at mouth of Great Kanawha River), your Petitioners emboldened by the Protection thereof, had taken up and settled themselves on sundry Plantations on the Great Kanawha, above the said Station; which on the withdrawing of the Troops stationed at Fort Randolph aforesaid, they were thro’ fear of the Indians obliged to abandon and leave desolate, to the great loss and detriment of your Petitioners and to the no less prejudice of the Inhabitants of this County in general, as they thereby lost a Barrier, which in a great measure covered their frontiers: under these difficulties and hardships have we lain for these three years past, hoping that a Peace might comer, by which we would be permitted to return to our Habitations with safety: But the much desired Blessing not having arrived, and worn out with the hardships we sustain, your Petitioners humbly beg leave to inform your Excellency and the Hon’ble Council, that they are determined to return to their aforesaid Habitations and propose in the first place to Erect a Station on the mouth of Elk River for the Protection of themselves and Families, and only request of Government that a Lieutenant and 30 men of the Militia of Green Brier County may be stationed there for our assistance. The Benefit which would accrue to this County in having such a Station there are so obvious, that they need not be mentioned — the finding Provisions for them will occasion such difficulties as formerly, as the Tax grain annually paid by the Inhabitants here may be applied to their support. As some of the Hon’ble Council are intimately acquainted with the situation of the place we propose to Erect a Station at, and the advantages which would result to the County therefrom, so we purposely omit mentioning of them and only pray your Excellency and the Hon’ble Council to take our Petition into your Consideration and We, as in duty Bound shall ever Pray.

James Hugart James Thompson James Smyth James Hugart Jnr
Samuel Varner John Viney Mich’l See Peter Vanbiber
John Osborne John Vanbiber James McCay Wm Blake
John Jones John Piper David Williams John Dyer
John Patton Herbert Miller John McFerren Andrew McFarran
Patrick Murphy William Hugart Daniel McDowell Andrew Donnally
Charles Gromer John Williams William Dunn Thomas Ellis
John McCaslin Will Hamilton David McCoy John Patterson
W.H. Cavendish James Jarrett James Kitchen Wm Dyer
Wm Jones Peter Shoemaker Shadrach Hareman George Malham
Charles McClung Joseph McClung Thomas Cooper James Hewstan
Simon Akers Jacob Lockhart Richard Williams Joseph Claypole
Sam McGanaugh John Rogers Sam McClung John Harris
Leonard Cooper John Archer James Jordon Arch Smethers
Thomas Teas William Craige James Patterson James Flinn
John Bellew Charles Howard Will Fullerton Thomas Hoof
John Graham Sampson Archer John Lewis
Spencer Cooper Leonard Morris

Source: “Calendar of Virginia State Papers” Volume II, Pages 468 and 169.