Andrew's1 Son - Spy?
Buncombe County was created on 14 Jan 1792. The early settlers who had come over the mountains were
roamers. They wanted to see what was beyond. They also thought that they could better themselves by
securing and owning more land and having land for their large families. Each generation after the first
European settlement of North America had pushed farther westward. At the eve of the (American) Revolution
there was a settlement at the foot of the Blue Ridge at Old Fort. A trickle of settlers had moved into present
Native Americans retaliated. They considered the land theirs. To stop this retaliation, the Cherokee Nation was
invaded by General Rutherford with focus from the Piedmont of the Carolinas. Many of the soldiers in this
invasion saw what they considered the promised land. As soon as the guns of the Revolution were silenced,
these farmer-soldiers quickly settled Buncombe County east of the French Broad.
. ...There were many Native Americans in the area. Some of this section was used as their hunting grounds.
And there had been some permanent villages where the Indians had built houses and were farmers.
Treaties were made...treaties were broken. Soon all of what is present Haywood County was ceded to the
One document in the North Carolina State Archives in Raleigh, NC, reveals the condition of events on the
frontier at that time.
The following is a true statement of services performed by the spies on the frontier of Buncombe County from
and after the 27th day of June 1795. Most of the people named appear to have lived in the western part of
Buncombe County. Some of this area is in present Haywood County. The document here is edited, showing
only the name of the person, and the number of days in service. They all entered service on 27 Jun 1795.
1-Nathan Dever - 26 days
2-William Stringfield - 26
3-John Welch - 26
4-Gabriel Keith - 26
5-Ebenezer Fain - 25
6-Jonathan McPeeters - 25 days
7-John McClure - 25
8-Samuel Neill - 25
9-George Cathy -25
10-James Glass - 24
11-John Morrow - 24 days
12-John Robinson - 22
13-Handley Vaughan - 19 days
14-John Nelson - 18
15-John Stringfield - 19
16-Austin Chote - 19
17-Joseph McPeeters - 19 days 18-John Davidson - 19 days
19-James Rutherford - 19
20-John Bradley - 19
21-David McPeeters - 19 days.
The report was then sworn to: State of North Carolina, Buncombe County. The foregoing persons (excepting
Austin Chote, Joseph McPeeters, John Davidson, James Rutherford, John Bradley, and David McPeeters)
personally appeared before me and made oath in due form of law that they were in active on the frontiers the
number of days charged opposite their respective names. Sworn to the 27th of July 1795 before William
Attached to the list and sworn affidavit, was a sworn affidavit of D. Vance, Lt. Col.
State of No. Carolina, Buncombe County. I hereby certify that on the 27th of June (1795) that I engaged the
forementioned [sic] spies and placed them out on the frontiers with orders to watch the motions of the Indians
and give the necessary information-- I have good reason to believe, were faithful to the discharge of their duty
and attended the number of days charged in their payroll. Austin Close, Joseph McPeeters, John Davidson,
James Rutherford, John Bradley, and david [sic] McPeeters were not present at the time the others were
qualified and neglected proving their attendance, but I believe and know that some of them were attentive to
their duty. Given under my hand Novr. 20th 1795.
D Vance, Lt. Col.
This story contains the name John McClure. I believe it is Andrew McClure's1 son. You decide.
I found a letter written by John's son-in-law and didn't want to lose it so it will reside here for the time being:
The following letter was written by William Kimsey (1833-1861+), son of David Kimsey and Ann McClure to his
uncle David McClure (1807-1880), son of John McClure and Sarah Cathey, all of Brasstown, during the Civil War.
His father, John McClure, is the son of Andrew McClure and Mary Wilson (#1)
Camp Washington N. C. December 22nd 1861
Dear Uncle, I take this opportunity of dropping you a fiew lines to let you know that I am well
at this time and I hope thes fiew lines may find you all well. I hav nothing of interest to wright to you.
We hav no news from congress here. it is said here that old Abe has began to open his eyes som
for it is a general talk here that he has said that it is England that is going to do the opening after
all we heard that England had sent over a lasy forse to Canada and all so says she will hav free access
to the Mississippi river and the news here is that She has started a larg fleet to the gulf of mexico
from all the prospicts I think we will get to com home in time to make a crop yet this coming
spring or at least I hope we will. For I am a gitting very tired of camp life for we hav some of the tightest
rules here that ever I heard of before there is not but two aloud to go out of the camps at a time and
they are alow’ed onley from 11 oclock til 2 oclock of a day. Everything is high here. Shoos is from 3 to 3 dollars 50
cents. Boots from 4 dollars to 7 dollars and 25 cts.
Coffee is 1 dollar per pound, we do not get any coffee here but we git a half pint cup full of
corn meal or flower at a mess and 1 pound of beef or 3 quarters of a pound bacon or pork a day. We git no surip
but we git some rise but not much and we git one ounce of shugar per day. We hav got very good houses to stay
in but we have not got cover enough to keep us warm for it is as cold as it is in Towns though it has bin as wearm
there for the last week as it was when we left Hiwassee or nearly
so. we have had one cold night or two here lately
I think we will hav a very dry Christmass unless it rains or snows for we hav drilled til
that is no fun to us. We drill 4 hours in the day. We do not expect to be attacted here though we had
rite smart of fun here the other night. We was eating our supper about half past 6 oclock when
they communist beeting the long roole. Every man in our company that was well to go to the perraid
ground got his gun and run out in to lines as soon as they could but when we got there we was very
badley disappointed for we was about faced and then in about one minit there was a great flash
of light and the next thing we saw was a skyrocket rising in the air which bursted when it was
about 30 feet high in three parts which went hurling through the air in different direcetions
making a rite beautifull sight. They flung four
rockets then they beet the retreat and we all went to our tents like brave men but I beleav
that if the Yankees had a ben there that we could a whipped 3 to one. ha we hav drawen som
of our money. we got 2 months wages and eight days and 25 dollars. bounty money we got 50 dollars.
I want you to tell father to wright to me an I want you to wright as soon as you git this. Tell Uncle Andrew and Uncle
John McClure to wright to me. Tell Sarah if you see her that I would be glad to see her but I can not com now but I
will wright to her soon. I must com to the close for the present. So nomore but remains your affectionate Nephew
William W. Kimsey
To David McClure