1 Oct 1838: Moses Guest, Revolutionary War Veteran, Dies in Franklin County, Georgia

TombstoneMy 5x great-grandfather Moses Guest died 179 years ago today — on October 1, 1838 — at the age of 88.  He was a veteran of the Cherokee-American wars and the American Revolution.

Moses was born January 3, 1750, in Prince William County (now Fauquier County), Virginia, the second son of William Guest and Susannah Cockney.  His family moved to the Yadkin River region of Wilkes County, North Carolina, in his youth.   

Moses married Mary Blair about 1771.  Moses and Mary had 14 children together, as recorded by Moses in his family Bible.

In 1775, Moses entered the service of the North Carolina militia for two months during the Cherokee wars, a series of back-and-forth raids and skirmishes between the Cherokee Indians and frontier settlers.  Moses served during the prelude period of the Cherokee wars — the time period following the French & Indian War but before open warfare broke out in 1776 as Cherokees fought as allies of Great Britain.

Moses joined the North Carolina militia in 1776 as fighting began in the American Revolutionary War.  He was promoted to ensign on August 6, 1777, under Captain Elijah Isaacs, and was commissioned as captain on January 25, 1782, reporting at various points in his service to Colonels Armstrong and Cleveland.

Moses saw action at the Battle of Kings Mountain on October 7, 1780, in which he was Captain of Horse.  This battle was a pivotal moment in the Revolution, as the Patriot’s surprising victory after a string of losses boosted morale and forced Great Britain’s Lord Cornwallis to abandon his plan to invade North Carolina.

After the Revolution, Moses and his family moved to Pendleton, South Carolina.  His family then migrated to Franklin County, Georgia, in 1800 — likely a result of Moses receiving bounty land for his war service.

Mary died in 1827, after 56 years of marriage to Moses.  Moses married second wife, Eleanor York, on May 8, 1829, in Franklin County, Georgia.  His only child with Eleanor was born in 1830 — a child he fathered at the age of 80!

Moses died October 1, 1838, in Franklin County, Georgia, at age 88.  He is buried beside his first wife Mary in the Guest Family Cemetery, located near Toccoa, Georgia, at the Franklin and Stephens County line.

The Toccoa chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution placed a plaque on his grave and honored his military service posthumously in October 1971.


“Battle of Kings Mountain.” Wikipedia. September 28, 2017. Accessed October 01, 2017. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Kings_Mountain.

Compiled Service Record for Moses Guest, Captain, North Carolina Militia in “Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty-Land Warrant Application Files.” Database. Fold3.comhttp://www.fold3.com : n.d. Citing NARA microfilm publication M804. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration.

Find A Grave (http://www.findagrave.com : accessed 1 October 2017), memorial page 58069702, Capt. Moses Guest (1750–1838), created by “rondajo”; citing Guest Family Cemetery, Stephens County, Georgia, USA. Gravestone photograph #42858977 by Rickie Rhyne (#47146277).

“Moses Guest.” Georgia Society SAR Graves Registry. Accessed 1 October 2017. http://gassar.org/gravesregistry/getperson.php?personID=I81&tree=graves.

“Toccoa honors local hero.” The Daily News. Athens, Georgia. October 29, 1971.

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