The Back Rhodes of Our Genealogy

Welcome to, aka "The Back Rhodes of Our Genealogy" website!

James MorganMale 1715 - 1731  (16 years)

Personal Information    |    Notes    |    All    |    PDF

  • Name James Morgan 
    Born 22 Aug 1715  New Castle County, DE Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Christened Sep 1715  Immanuel Church, New Castle County, DE Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Died 17 Nov 1731 
    Person ID I10005  Our Back Rhodes Genealogy Pages
    Last Modified 28 Oct 2012 

    Father Col. Morgan Morgan,   b. 1 Nov 1688, Wales Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 17 Nov 1766, Frederick [now Berkeley] County, VA [now WV] Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 78 years) 
    Mother Catherine Garretson,   b. 16 May 1692, New Castle County, DE Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 16 May 1773, Berkeley County, VA [now WV] Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 81 years) 
    Married Abt 1713 
    Family ID F4795  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • (1) State of West Virginia, Report of the Col. Morgan Morgan Monument Commission, Charleston, WV: Jarrett Print. Co., 1924, pp. 35-99:

      JAMES Morgan

      All of Colonel Morgan's children were born in Delaware before the family moved to Virginia, probably in 1730, except two, or probably three, of the youngest. A record found at New Castle, Delaware, recorded at the Immanuel Protestant Episcopal C hurch, shows the birth of James as being September ___, 1715. Therefore, he was a lad of fifteen years of age when his father made the first "covered wagon" trip recorded in our family, which, though comparatively short, was as perilous, no doub t, as those longer wagon trips made in later years by his descendants, when Oregon was the goal.

      The very ruggedness of the wilderness, some misfortune perhaps, or the inheritance of a tender constitution, may singly or severally have worked to overwhelm the youngster, for if the statement of the brother, David, is to be relied upon, he gav e up the struggle within the year and found a grave in the wilderness at the age of sixteen. This, no doubt, was one of the early, if not the first funeral, of a white resident of the State.

      But here the record, meager as it is, is contradicted by tradition which will not down, and very recently statements have been brought forward, which, if correct, will change to a large extent the trend of opinion of most of the family, with ref erence to the statement of David, as well as tradition current among members of the Morgan family in Berkeley county. The tradition referred to is as follows:

      James Morgan married and had a family of several children at the time of the breaking out of the Revolution, in which war he served. He lived near the old homestead in a small place of a few houses now called Torytown, so named from a tragic sce ne enacted there, in which he was the victim of the fiendish deviltry of the Tories that infested that part of the county. Major Morgan had obtained leave of absence from the army, and was on a visit to his family, when he was captured by the mu rderous Tories and taken from his house and carried to a small building, used as a spring or milk house, which stood just across the road from his residence. The wife and small children were ranged in the highway in front of the building and com pelled by the Tories to witness the scene of their deadly and atrocious work. Standing him in front of the door of the log milk house, the foundation of which exists to this day, with his hands tied behind his back and a lighted candle placed a t his breast to serve as a mark at which to aim in the darkness, they there in the presence of his miserably distracted wife and children, shot 17 balls into his body. From that day until now, the place has been known as Torytown, and yet appear s on the map of West Virginia.

      The account goes on to say that after this tragedy the family grew up and the eldest son, James, Jr., married and had a family of several children. He was preparing to move his family to the south when one day while working on an axe handle, h e met with an accident from which he later died. After his death the widow and children went to South Carolina.
      In recounting the above tradition, James is variedly referred to as being a Chaplain or a Major in the Revolution, but no record is found with the War Department or in the Congressional Library at Washington, of his having served in that war, un less he was one of the James Morgans found listed in Capt. William Raymond's Company of Virginia Militia stationed at Prickett's Fort on the Monongahela. This is not likely since James lived on the other side of the Alleghenies, and was a man o f 62 years of age at that time. If he was an officer, his record should be in existence.

      By referring to the above list of Colonel Morgan's children, it will be noted that David says that Nathaniel Thompson, the first husband of his sister Anne, was murdered. It is pointed out that all the statements of David may be reconciled if w e go on the assumption that it was Anne's husband, Thompson, who was shot, or murdered by the Tories, and not her brother James; and it is suggested that while the tradition, in the main, may be correct, an error has slipped in at this point, b y reason of its longevity and frequent repetition.

      Morgans yet living on the old plantation remember seeing the seventeen bullet holes in the old milk-house door before the building gave way to the ravages of time.

      The most recent account of James Morgan (given by Mr. W. J. Seaman, of Missouri, who claimed to be a direct descendant), is to the effect that he married Margaret Hedges and settled down near the parental roof; that he served in the Revolution , and while on a scouting trip, or on a journey from Prickett's Fort to his home in Berkeley County, was shot by an Indian in the year 1778-9; that later his son James, Jr., and others of the family, moved to Ohio County, near Wheeling, and no w have descendants living all through the middle west.

      The records at Winchester have not been searched for data relating to James Morgan being a resident, land owner, or taxpayer in that county, and in the absence of anything definite along these lines, the above accounts are given for what they ar e worth and in no way vouched for.