Daniel Boone via American Minute
by Bill Federer
Daniel Boone served with George Washington in 1755 during the French and Indian War, under British General Edward Braddock.
In 1765, Daniel Boone explored Florida.He once exclaimed:
“I can’t say I was ever lost, but I was bewildered once for three days.”
In 1767, Daniel Boone, whose Quaker family had pioneered North Carolina’s Yadkin River Valley, began to explore Kentucky.
In 1773, Daniel Boone and Captain William Russell were ordered by Virginia’s Governor, Lord Dunmore, to settle an area called Castle Woods.
Lord Dunmore wrote:
“In the past year, 1773, the Indians killed…a very promising young man…in one of the back countries…Captain William Russell…was the first that discovered the dismal spectacle of the dead body of his son, mangled in horrible manner.”
When the Revolution began, Lord Dunmore fled and Patrick Henry was elected the first American Governor of Virginia.
A fort named him, Fort Patrick Henry, was where Daniel Boone set off from in 1775 to survey Kentucky for the Pennsylvania Company.
On July 14, 1776, Boone’s daughter Jemima and her teenage friends, Fanny and Betsy Callaway, decided to leave the confines of Boonesboro and were captured by Shawnee Indians.
James Fenimore Cooper drew from this incident in writing his classic book, The Last of the Mohicans (1826).
On April 24, 1777, Shawnee Indians were recruited by the British Governor of Canada to attack Boonesboro. Led by Chief Blackfish, the attack was repelled, though Daniel Boone was shot in the leg.
As Shawnees destroyed cattle and crops, food supplies running low and settlers needed salt to preserve meat.
They were captured by Chief Blackfish’s warriors, some taken to Chilicothe, and others to near Detroit.
Beginning September 7, 1778, Boone successfully repelled the ten-day siege by Chief Blackfish’s warriors.
In the autumn of 1779, Boone led another party of immigrants to Boonesboro, among whom, according to tradition, was the family of Abraham Lincoln’s grandfather.
In October, 1780, Daniel Boone was hunting with his brother, Edward, when Shawnee Indians attacked. They cut off Edward’s head and took it back as a trophy.
Boone was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in the Fayette County militia, November 1780.
Boone returned to Kentucky, and though Cornwallis had surrendered, some British continued to fight.
One of the last battles of the Revolution took place, August 19, 1782.
In November 1782, Daniel Boone was a part of the last major campaign of the war with Clark’s expedition into Ohio.
In 1782, Boone was elected sheriff of Fayette County. He bought land in Kentucky but lost it due to poorly prepared titles.
Boone left Kentucky in 1799 and bought land in the Spanish Territory of Missouri, west of the Mississippi River.
When Spain transferred this land to France, and France sold it to the United States as the Louisiana Purchase, 1803, Boone lost his title to this land too.
A special act of Congress gave him back his land just six years before his death.
When the War of 1812 started, Daniel Boone volunteered for duty but was turned down due to his age of 78.
Daniel Boone was known to have a habit of taking the Bible with him on hunting expeditions, often reading it to others around the campfire.
Daniel Boone died SEPTEMBER 26, 1820, and was buried in the Old Bryan Farm graveyard. His remains were moved to Kentucky’s Frankfort Cemetery, though some claim the wrong bones were moved.
Hazel Atterbury Spraker wrote inThe Boone Family (1982, p. 578):
“Daniel was buried near the body of his wife, in a cemetery established in 1803 by David Bryan, upon the bank of a small stream called Teuque Creek about one and one-half miles southeast of the present site of the town of Marthasville in Warren County, Missouri, it being at that time the only Protestant cemetery North of the Missouri River.”
“Boone…occupied quite a prominent position, and served as a Representative in the Virginia legislature, while his fame as a hunter and explorer was now spread abroad in the United States, and even Europe.
Theodore Roosevelt continued:
“Boone’s creed in matters of morality and religion was as simple and straightforward as his own character.
Late in life he wrote to one of his kinsfolk (sister-in-law, Sarah Boone, October 17, 1816):
‘The religion I have is to love and fear God, believe in Jesus Christ, do all the good to my neighbor, and myself that I can, do as little harm as I can help, and trust on God’s mercy for the rest.’
The old pioneer always kept the respect of red men and white, of friend and foe, for he acted according to his belief.”
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