The following narrative is a rough draft of a portion of a study on the William Herbert militia company (1774).This study will be published on New River Notes (a free history web site - http://www.ls.net/~newriver/nrv.htmhttp://www.ls.net/~newriver/nrv.htm ).Part of this project is writing a short biography of every man in the company.If you have corrections, additions or comments, I would appreciate hearing from you.-- James Quinn (note - hyperlinks and some formatting removed from what follows)
Ephraim Osborne, the patriarch of the Osborne families in the New River valley and three of his sons, Enoch, Jonathan, and Robert along with Ephraim's brother Stephen were members of the Herbert company.This family came to the New River valley very early (1765 or 6) from the Yadkin River valley (i.e. the "Jersey Settlement" in Rowan Co., NC).Before North Carolina, their origin is more obscure, but Rita Sutton2says that family legends place them as from New Jersey.Their naming pattern is quite consistent with the New Jersey Osborne family that originated in Connecticut and before that in England, but the connection to this family has not been established.It is possible that they instead are more recent immigrants from England or Scotland or Ireland who migrated to North Carolina from Pennsylvania (Charles Osborne hypothesis).It is now believed that the supposed connection to a Jonathan Osborne and a Greta Holman is a genealogical hoax played on a customer by a "professional" genealogist sometime before World War II, and propagated like wild-fire via the internet.In fact we know the names of the parties involved in the hoax.
Osborne's fort was on New River near the mouth of Saddle Creek.This is located a mile or two west of Independence, Grayson County, Virginia and is marked by a small monument to the cemetery that used to be there.If you take the bridge a few hundred yards west of this marker you are in North Carolina.This fort was one of two built along New River in today's Grayson County for protection from Indians and Tories during the Revolution.The other was built downstream (to the NE) at Cox's place.
The Osborne's religious affiliation was changeable gravitating from Presbyterianism to the Baptists and later to the Methodists.
The Jersey Settlement has an interesting origin which is discussed HERE.
The most authoritative genealogy (IMO) on the internet for the Osborne family is Osborne Origins by Lee Osborne.
References: (1) Wiley Winton Osborne - His Ancestors and Descendants by Carol Osborne Hackett and Myrtle Greer Johnson (thanks Emily). (2) Early Osborne Alley Families On Clinch & New River by Rita Kennedy Sutton.
Unlike many members of Herbert's company, the Osbornes appear to have been consistent Whigs during the Revolution.Enoch was a Captain on the Whig side in the Revolution.The pension applications of Jonathan Osborne, David Cox and John Osborne son of Robert, indicate this as well.The one question mark is how enthusiastic they would be in the attack on the Cherokee, to which their family later was tied to in marriage (the lack of enthusiasm of the New River men was noted by the commanders of the attacks on the Cherokee in 1777, and Robert Osborne refused to take the oath of allegience in 1777).Other questions along this line remain as well as it appears that the mixed race Cherokees they were associated with later on fought on the Whig side as well.
Probably born in the Yadkin valley of North Carolina about 1750, the son of Ephraim Osborne below and brother to the other Osbornes in Herbert's company. Enoch probably hunted in the area that is now Watauga Co., NC before settling on New River because in 1764 he and his brothers Solomon and Ephraim were surprised by Indians while sleeping.His brother Solomon was killed but he and Ephraim escaped in their nightclothes in the dark.He moved to what is now Grayson County at the Osborne's Fort location called the Osborne Settlement about 1765.His land survey for 260 acres was entered on 14 December 1774 in a Survey Book now kept in Christiansburg.Like the other settlers in the area he purchased his land from the Loyal Land Company.
He was commisioned as Lieutenant in the Revolution by a committee of Fincastle County on April, 1776.He had a company raised by 1777 and was a Captain of militia. This company participated in Col. William Christian's attack on the Cherokee (Jonathan Osborne RW pension application).In 1777 when this company was asked to take the Oath of Allegience 26 of 32 of those present signed, including Enoch, his father and his brothers Ephraim and Stephen.His brother Robert refused.In 1779 his company saw duty on the Clinch River frontier.In the summer of 1779 his company mutinied as did the Cox company and captured the commanders of the companies (i.e. Enoch Osborne and John Cox).They were freed unharmed, but clearly the majority of his neighbors were that year opposed to the war.Colonel William Preston sent Col. Crockett to put down the rebellion.Apparently some deal was made and new militia companies were formed and the rebels appear again on the militia rolls in the subsequent years.It is not known how many men from Osborne's company participated in the Battle of King's Mountain and other fights in North Carolina in 1780-2.Enoch himself furnished supplies for the Washington County militia when it returned from King's Mountain (Montgomery Co. Court Records, 7 May 1782) and forage for 10 horses from Capt. Dan Morgan's company.By family tradition, Enoch Osborne is said to have participated at King's Mountain.Wade Eller thought that his company participated under William Preston at the Battle of Guilford Court House in March 1781.There is no documentation to support these last two traditions.He remained Captain of this company until 1787.
In 1779 he was made a member of the "Commission of the peace of this County" (Montgomery), a job that combined Justice of the Peace and County Commissioner.He served in this job until at least 1787.He acted from 1781 on as an assignee for person buying and selling land.When Wythe was split from Montgomery in 1790 he was made a Justice of the Peace for Wythe and when Grayson was split from Wythe in 1793 he assumed that office for Grayson County and held that office until 1809.In 1792, Enoch entertained the Methodist Bishop Asbury.He died before 18 September 1818 in Grayson Co., Virginia.
In the 1782 Montgomery Co., VA tax list he had 1 tithe, 0 slaves, 20 horses, and22 cattle (compared to his neighbors and brothers he was wealthy). After the Revolution he was involved in acquiring land confiscated from Tories (Jeff Weaver).In 1793 (Wythe personal tax list) he had 2 tithes, 3 slaves (>16 years old) and 6 horses.In 1796 he had 2 tithes, 3 slaves and 4 horses. In 1805 he owned 2 slaves and 7 horses (he deeded 211 acres to son Enoch in 1805). He is the only Osborne in Grayson County in 1793, 1796 and 1805 that owned slaves. At his death he owned 5 slaves worth $300-500 each, one Chichasaw Indian stud horse, one whiskey still, and various cattle. In the 1796 land tax list there are three mentions of men named Enoch Osborne listed with 211, 140 and 260 acres of land respectively (could be 1-3 men). He also bought land in 1790 in Wilkes Co., NC (180 acres on New River, and a 100 acre tract on the Yadkin).He bought 200 acres and Lewis Creek and bought numerous tracts on Elk Creek in present day Alleghany Co., NC.
Enoch Osborne was married to Jane Hash the daughter of John Hash (b. 1717 Baltimore Co., MD or in New Jersey, d. 1782 Montgomery (now Grayson) Co., VA) and Rebecca Anderson (daughter of John Anderson b. before 1694 in Hunterdon Co., NJ and Rebecca Horton).John Hash is said to be the son of a John Hash Sr. and Ellender Osborne (perhaps a relative). John Hash, 1782 Montgomery Co., VA tax list: 1 tithe, 0 slaves, 3 horses, 15 cattle
Enoch and Jane had the following children:Enoch (m. Mary Livesay [daughter of Thomas Livesay b. England and Margaret Stones] and lived and died in Grayson Co.), Zachariah (m. Charity Reeves, daughter of George Reeves and Jane Burton and removed to Alleghany Co., NC), Ruth (b. 26 Dec 1770 VA, d. 13 Nov 1851 Ashe Co., NC , m. Joshua Cox, son of David Cox - Ruth and Joshua lived and died in Grayson Co., VA), Mary "Polly" (m. George Howell, son of James Howell), Hannah (m. Charles Copeland and removed to Vermillion Co., IL), Jane (m. George Reeves, son of George Reeves and Jane Burton and removed to Ashe Co., NC), Annie (m. Samuel Robinette [son of John Robinette and Mary] and removed to Scott Co., VA), Rebecca (m. Samuel Cox, son of David Cox), Abigail (m. John Goss [a Goss was among the Tories captured and hung by Benjamin Cleveland in 1781]) and Sarah (m. Moses Dixon, son of Thomas Dixon b. Scotland and Nancy McMillan and removed to Alleghany Co., NC).
There are two possibilities for this Ephraim and they are father and son.It is likely that the man in Herbert's company is the younger Ephraim, based on age.Both are discussed here.
Ephraim Osborne Sr.
Ephraim Osborne is the patriarch of the Osborne families of the New River valley.One local historian says he was a fur trader based in the Yadkin River who made trips into the wilderness to the west.By the time of Lord Dunmore's war he was no longer a young man.
Charles Osborne: "Concerning the origin of my ancestor Ephriam Osborn Sr. died ca 1795 Grayson Co Va.He was in Rowan Co NC in 1753, and in a series of moves ended up on the Virginia side of New River about 1766. Before North Carolina, family legend places him in Pennsylvania, but for a short time before North Carolina, in Virginia on his trip south. He had no connection to the established Thomas Osborne line of Chesterfield Co Virginia."
Note that in both the Hackett and Sutton family histories they have family legends for a New Jersey origin instead of Pennsylvania as given by Charles above.
Rita Sutton, "Early Osborne Alley Families" and Carol Hackett's documentation for Ephraim Osborne:
1) In Rowan Co. NC by 1753 (RW pension #58912 for Jonathan Osborne).
2)On 1759 Rowan tax list.
3) 1761 - Ephraim Osborn found in Capt. Caleb Osborn's tax district, Forks of the Yadkin
4) 1762 - Ephraim is a witness in a court case - last record in North Carolina
5) 1765-6 presumed to have moved to Virginia based on documentation of his sons (e.g. RW pension #58912)
6) 1772 - On Fincastle Co., VA tax list.
7) 1774 - Ephraim has land surveyed in Montgomery Co., VA (largest of the Osborne tracts, Loyal Land grant)
8) 1774 - William Scott filed suit against Ephraim (suit abated 1779)
9) 1777 - An Ephraim Osborne Sr. and Jr. both appear on Capt. Enoch Osborne's militia list, Ephraim Sr. took the oath of Allegience
10) 1779 - paid for patrolling while in the militia.
11) 1781 - Ephraim Osborne Sr. is on the militia list marked "not fit", and as a Lieutenant.
12) 3 Mar 1786 Ephraim Osborn on revenue tax list in Montgomery Co. VA (now Grayson Co.)
13) 28 Oct 1789 still living in same area with property on both sides of Saddle Creek.
14) 23 Apr 1794, exempted from paying the county levy.
15) 1795 - His land is transferred to David Pew (presumably he has died)
Ephraim's wife was named Betty (Elizabeth).Some oral histories (e.g. Osbornes of Harlan Co., KY) say she was a Howard. She is not Elizabeth WELLS Howard.The Elizabeth Howard who married a Wells and is mentioned in Joshua Howard's will is documented to have stayed married to Mr. Wells in Maryland having many children there and never went to North Carolina.
Ephraim and Betty's documented children are Robert Osborne m. Ann (see below); Solomon Osborne (killed by Indians while hunting, 1764) m. Nancy Davidson; Enoch Osborne m. Jane Hash (see above); Jonathan Osborne m. (1) Nancy Howell, (2) Agnes Wells and (3) Mary;Ephraim Osborne (Jr.) (see below) m. Mary Brock (daughter of Aaron Brock[aka Cutsawah or Red Bird] and a Cherokee mother) - died in Harlan Co., KY.There may have daughters, but there is little documentation.The ones proposed are Ellender Osborne m. William Hash; Nancy Osborne m. George Livesay; and Chloe Osborne m. George Howard. It is thought that Ephraim's children were born between 1743 and 1765.
The Clinch River Valley line originates with Caleb Osborne m. Hannah (Howard?).He is suspected to be the brother of this Ephraim Osborne as they appear together in Rowan Co., NC (Rita Sutton).
Ephraim Osborne Jr.
1) born 1754 in Rowan Co., NC
2) Ephraim signed the loyalty oath to the Whig cause in 1777, but he was apparently no enthusiastic supporter of the War against the Cherokee for in 1779 the Montgomery County records show that he was brought before the court for lack of attendance in his brother's militia company musters.The court ordered him to board a sloop on the Chesapeake Bay or join his brother's company which was at time on duty in the Clinch River valley.He chose the latter course and is shown to have been paid for 33 days of guarding the frontier from Indian attacks.
3) He was also on the Osborne Company militia list in 1781.
4) 1785 - residing in North Carolina
5) 1799 - his name appeared along with Solomon Osborne Sr. and Solomon Osborne Jr. on a petition in Hawkins Co., TN
6) 1802 - On the tax list in Knox Co., KY, living on the Cumberland River in a part of Knox that became Harlan Co. in 1819.
7) Ephraim filed a pension application in Perry Co., KY 8 Sept. 1834. His duty, under his brother Enoch primarily consisted of being a scout on the frontier.He went into Cherokee Territory under Col. Christian but says the Indians sued for peace and there was no fighting.They went on to Dragging Canoe Town and burnt the place.He also served on the Clinch frontier under Capt. Frederick Edwards after the Tories."He again went with Capt. Brummett as a guard of Ammunition from the Lead Mines across the Flour Gap to North Carolina anddelivered. the ammunition he thinks to Capt. McGraw.They stayed several days at the Lead Mines waiting for the load and he thinks was one month this time.He was several times in scouting parties after the Tories, but don't now remember enough to tell the officers nor describe the trip."The pension was denied.
8) He died November 09, 1852 in Harlan Co., Kentucky.
Ephraim married Mary Brock (b. before 1774, d. between 1830-1840 in Harlan Co., KY), the daughter of Aaron Brock, sometimes called by his Cherokee name Cutsawah or Red Bird and a Cherokee woman called Sarah.She was a sister to Jesse Brock who fought on the Whig side in the Revolution.It appears that Ephraim or his descendants were present at the Massacre at Yahoo Falls in 1810 on the side of the Cherokee. After this attack, the mixed race Cherokee ceased to exist in Kentucky as Indians and were assimilated into the white population.
The children of Ephraim Osborne Jr. and Mary Brock were: Jesse, Rhoda, Hiram, Ephraim (d. after 1860 Harlan Co., KY m. Lucy Saylor); Rebecca (m. Benjamin Howard); and Mary (m. Amon Brock, son of Jesse Brock and Rebecca Howard.Rebecca was the daughter of Samuel Howard and Frances Dryden).
Rita Sutton time line:
1) Jonathan was baptized 2-13-1753 in the Moravian church.
2) 15 Dec 1774 he obtained a Loyal Company land grant of 132 acres on the west side of New River. He lived on the Old Mill Rd. between the furnace and Enoch Osborne on New River near Fox Creek.
3) 1782 - He receives a treasury warrant survey of 200 acres on New River.Part of a larger tract assigned him from Enoch Osborne assignee of Walter Crockett.Personal tax list, Montgomery Co., VA - Ozburn, Jonathan 0 slaves, 1 horse, 9 cattle
4) April 1791 - James Ward assigned him 150 acres on the waters of New River.Jonathan and Mary sold part of this tract to Nathan Ward in 1802.In 1828 he sold 100 acres from this tract to Benjamin Ward.
5) In the 1796 Grayson Co. land tax list Jonathan has 150 acres of land valued at 50 pounds.
6) 12 Nov 1832, now living in Ashe Co., NC he filed a Revolutionary War pension application (#58912).He stated he was 80 years old and born on the Forks of the Yadkin. He removed to the Hollow of Surry in his youth for a few years after which he moved with his father to New River where he lived for 63 years.Enoch Osborne was his brother and his captain.His first 3 months were spent at Osborne's fort, but then they marched against the Cherokee under Col. Christian and Major Shelby.They marched into Indian country and burned some towns while others captitulated.He was on many expeditions later against the Tories. The pension was granted and he was paid $20 per year.
Jonathan m. first Nancy Howell, a daughter of James Howell; he married second Agnes Wells (24 Sept 1796); third he married Mary (by 1802).
According to a great grandson in Tennessee, Jonathan raised 18 sons and numerous daughters.
Children of Jonathan Osborne and Nancy Howell: William b. 1784 m. Mary; Jacob; Rachel m. Elisha Blevins; David; Seth; Elias m. Sarah Sizemore (daughter of George Sizemore [Virginia Indian descendant] and Anna Hart) -- Elias' son Solomon m. Martha Arms, a mixed race Cherokee woman who fled to WV to avoid the Trail of Tears; Joshua; Josiah; Johannah; Sarah; Andrew; Nancy
Children of Jonathan Osborne and Agnes Wells: Stephen b. 21 Feb 1801 m. Mary Vanover ;
Children of Jonathan Osborne and Mary: George b. 1803 m. Mary Baldwin (daughter of Elisha Baldwin); Tabitha b. 1805 m. Joshua Cole (son of Charles Cole and Elizabeth Stoneman [Quaker]), Caleb b. 1805; Enoch b. 1807 and Mary b. 1811.
Rita Sutton supplies the following time line for Robert:
1) Married to Ann
2) 1763 - Living in Shenandoah Co., VA
3) 1765 - Living in Rowan (now Forsythe) Co., NC; a son Ephraim b. 1-15-1765 baptized in the Moravian Church at Salem.
4) 3 May 1774 - defendant in a suit brought by William Herbert; the following month defendant in a suit brought by William Scott. Both suits were later abated.
5) 1777 - in Enoch Osborne's militia company. Robert refused to take the oath of fidelity to the Whig side in the Revolution in 1777, but did take the oath later. 1781 - on the militia muster marked "not fit".
6) In 1782 he turned in a list of supplies he had furnished for the Whig cause (Montgomery Court Order Records, page 332).
7) 1789 - living on the north side of New River on Fox Creek or Grassy Creek
8) 1797 - living in Wilkes (now Ashe) Co., NC in Capt. Weaver's district with sons John and Robert.
9) 1800 - Ashe Co., NC census, Robert and wife born before 1755 with 3 sons 16-26 and 2 daughters under 16.John, Bartholomew and Jeremiah were living nearby (26-45).
10) 1805 - his son John had moved to Barren Co., KY.Robert and his wife had moved there by 1810 (census).
11) 1820 - Some of Robert's children have removed to Crawford Co., IN.
12) His son John, born 16 April 1763 in Shenandoah Co., VA and who died in Linn Co., Iowa applied for a Revolutionary War pension November 1832 in Fountain Co., IN.He states he entered the service May 1, 1780 in Enoch Osborne's company and marched to Whitton Station now in TN.In 1781 he served a second time in Osborne's company and went to Blackmore Station and Bean Station to defend the frontier against Indian attack.He volunteered a third time to serve under William Campbell and went to North Carolina scouting for Tories.In his 4th tour he served under Capt. Gambrell, of the Light Dragoons, under Benjamin Cleveland in quest of Tories in Ashe Co., NC.He says that Enoch Osborne is his uncle.
Children of Robert Osborne:John Osborne (1763-1854 Iowa) m. Sarah Stewart (daughter of John Stewart [killed by Indians while on a hunting trip with Daniel Boone in Kentucky in 1770] and Hannah Boone, b. Berks Co., PA.Hannah is the sister of Daniel Boone the famous frontiersman and the daughter of Squire Boone and Sarah Morgan, who migrated from PA where they were Quakers to the forks of the Yadkin in NC in 1751 where they wer Baptists);Ephraim (baptized 1765 in the Moravian church), in Ashe Co., NC in 1820 with a wife and grandchildren; Robert m. Elizabeth Lapan, he died in Barren Co., KY about 1810;Other children have been proposed for Robert and Ann, but documentation is lacking:Bartholomew, Elias, Anne and Jeremiah.Solomon m. Mary Stewart, another daughter of John Stewart and Hannah Boone -- is by oral tradition a cousin not a son of Robert Osborne, but he migrates with the rest of Robert's family very consistently.
Stephen is thought by Rita Sutton to be a brother of Ephraim Osborne Sr. and an uncle to Capt. Enoch Osborne.
1) 1761 - Name appeared next Ephraim's on Elijah Skidmore's list of 1761 in the Yadkin-Surry area
2) 1771 - In Fincastle Co., VA living near Ephraim.Stephen Jr. is also on the poll tax in 1772, so would have been old enough to be in Herbert's company (and is by age more likely to be the one, not his father).
3) 14 Dec 1774 entered a survey of 170 acres on Saddle Creek in today's Grayson Co., VA.
4) 1777 - he and son Stephen took the oath of Allegience and were members of Capt. Enoch Osborne's Company.
5) 1782 - on the tax list for Montgomery Co., VA
Ozburn, Stephen, Jun.1tithe,2 horses, 1 cattle, 0 slaves
Ozburn, Stephn, Sen.1tithe,1 horse,8 cattle, 0 slaves
6) Stephen Sr. was exempt from paying the poll tax in 1793 and no further mention of him is made in Grayson County.
His son also disappears and we don't know what happened to him after 1789 (Rita Sutton).
Question: Is the Hannah Osborne b. about 1770 who marries Richard Blevins connected to Stephen's line?