Sunday, December 30, 2007

Gen. Joseph Graham, re: Kings Mountain

"Colonel Charles McDowell, of Burke county, on the approach of Ferguson with so large a force, had gone over the mountains to obtain assistance, and was in consultation with Colonel John Sevier and Colonel Isaac Shelby what plan should be pursued, when the two paroled men spoken of arrived and delivered their message from Colonel Ferguson. It was decided that each of them should use his best efforts to raise all the men that could be enlisted, and that this force, when collected, should meet on the Wataga, on the 25th of September. It was also agreed that Colonel Shelby should give intelligence of their movements to Colonel William Campbell, of the adjoining county of Washington, in Virginia, with the hope that he would raise what force he could and co-operate with them. They met on the Wataga the day appointed, and passed the mountains on the 30th of September, where they were joined by Colonel Benjamin Cleaveland, and Major Joseph Winston, from Wilks and Surry counties, North Carolina. On examining their force, it was found to number as follows, viz:

    "From Washington county, Virginia, under Col. Wm. Campbell 400
    "From Sullivan county, North Carolina, under Col. Isaac Shelby 240
    "From Washington county, North Carolina, under Col. John Sevier 240
    "From Burke and Rutherford counties, North Carolina, under Col. Charles McDowell 160
    "From Wilks and Surry counties, North Carolina, under Col. Cleaveland and Major James Winston 350
    Total 1390
"Col. Ferguson having accurate intelligence of the force collecting against him, early on the 4th of October, ordered his men to march, and remained half an hour after they had started writing a despatch to Lord Cornwallis, no doubt informing him of his situation and soliciting aid. The letter was committed to the care of the noted Abraham Collins (him of counterfeit memory) and another person by the name of Quinn, with injunctions to deliver it as soon as possible. They set out and attempted to pass the direct road to Charlotte, but having to pass through some whig settlements, they were surprised and pursued, and being compelled to secrete themselves by day and travel by night, they did not reach Charlotte until the morning of the 7th of October, the day of the battle. Colonel Ferguson encamped the first night at the noted place called the Cowpens, about twenty miles from Gilbertstown. On the 5th of October he crossed the Broad River, at what is now called Dear's Ferry, sixteen miles. On the 6th, he marched up the Ridge Road, between the waters of King's and Buffalo creeks, until he came to the fork, turning to the right across King's Creek, and through a gap in the mountain towards Yorkville, about fourteen miles. There he encamped on the summit of that part of the mountain to the right of the road, where he remained till he was attacked on the 7th.
"When the troops from the different counties met at the head of the Catawba river, the commanding officers met, and finding that they were all of equal grade, and no general officer to command, it was decided that Col. Charles McDowell should go to headquarters, supposed to be between Charlotte and Salisbury, to obtain Gen. Sumner or Gen. Davidson to take the command. In the meantime, it was agreed that Col. William Campbell, who had the largest regiment, should take the command until the arrival of a general officer, who was to act according to the advice of the colonels commanding, and that Major McDowell should take the command of the Burke and Rutherford regiment until the return of Col. McDowell."

(Source: Sketches of North Carolina, Historical and Biographical, Illustrative of the Principles of a Portion of Her Early Settlers, by Rev. William Henry Foote, New York, Robert Carter, 58 Canal Street, 1846)

The Call for the Overmountain Men

From King's Mountain and Its Heroes, by Lyman Copeland Draper, published 1881, P.G. Thomson, page 84:

    When Colonel [Charles] McDowell became convinced that Ferguson's movement to the north-western portion of South Carolina, threatened the invasion of the North Province also, he not only promptly raised what force he could from the sparsely populated settlements, on the heads of Catawba, Broad and Pacolet rivers, to take post in the enemy's front and watch his operations; but dispatched a messenger with this alarming intelligence to Colonels John Sevier and Isaac Shelby, on Watauga and Holston, those over-mountain regions, then a portion of North Carolina, but now of East Tennessee; urging those noted border leaders to bring to his aid all the riflemen they could, and as soon as possible.
    Sevier, unable to leave his frontier exposed to the inroads of the Cherokees, responded at once to the appeal, by sending a part of his regiment under Major Charles Robertson; and Shelby, being more remote, and having been absent on a surveying tour, was a few days later, but joined McDowell, at the head of two hundred mounted riflemen, about the twenty-fifth of July, at his camp near the Cherokee Ford of Broad river.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Gen. Charles McDowell (1743-1815)

From Reminiscences and Memoirs of North Carolina and Eminent North Carolinians, by John H. Wheeler, Columbus Printing Works, 1884:

    On the commencement of our Revolutionary troubles, he [Charles McDowell] was the commander of an extensive district in his section of country, and was a brave and daring officer.
    It was not until the year 1780 that western North Carolina became the field of military operations in the Revolutionary war. After subduing the States of Georgia and South Carolina, the British forces advanced to this State and commenced making demonstrations. McDowell was active in counteracting their movements.
    In June, 1780, having been joined by Shelby, Sevier, and Clarke, of Georgia, near Cherokee Ford on Broad River, McDowell determined to attack the British at a strongly fortified post on the Pacolet River, under command of Patrick Moore, which he gallantly performed and compelled him to surrender.
    He also attacked the Tories at Musgrove Mill on the Enoree River and routed them.
    Many other brilliant affairs in this section marked his energy and efficiency as a soldier. We have recorded the facts of his missing a participation in the battle of King's Mountain.
    As the several officers held equal rank, by a council of officers McDowell was dispatched to headquarters, then near Salisbury, to have General Sumner or General Davidson, who had been appointed brigadier general in place of General Rutherford, taken prisoner at Gates' defeat.
    This closed his military career. The people of his county were not ungrateful to him for his long and successful military service. He was the Senator from Burke from 1782 to 1788, and he had been also in 1778, and member of the House 1809-'10-'11.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Patrick Ferguson's China Service

Ever since the Revolutionary War, argument over the command of the Burke and Rutherford regiments at the tide-turning Battle of Kings Mountain on 7 October 1780 has continued to persist. Which Joseph McDowell deserves the credit: Pleasant Gardens or Quaker Meadows? Both? The Pleasant Gardens crew often boil the argument down to ownership of British Commander Major Patrick Ferguson's field service. 
(click image to enlarge)
(Photo source: History of the McDowells and Connections, by John Hugh McDowell, pub. 1918, C. B. Johnston, page 260)

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Quaker Meadows & Pleasant Gardens

The McDowell House at Quaker Meadows Plantation,
built in 1812 by Captain Charles McDowell, Jr
near Morganton, Burke County, North Carolina
From History of the McDowells and Connections, by John Hugh McDowell, pub. 1918, C. B. Johnston:

"According to tradition, the Quaker Meadows farm was so-called long before the McDowells or any other whites established homes in Burke County, and derived its name from the fact that the Indians, after clearing part of the broad and fertile bottoms, had suffered the wild grasses to spring up and form a large meadow, near which a Quaker had camped before the French-Indian war and traded for furs. On the 19th of November, 1752, Bishop [August Gottlieb] Spangenburg recorded in his diary (Vol. V. Colonial Record, page 6) that he was in camp near Quaker Meadows, and that he was "in the forest fifty miles from all settlements." The Bishop described the lowlands of Johns River as the richest he had seen anywhere in Carolina. But, after surveying the large area, he abandoned the idea of taking title for it from Lord Granville, because the Indian War began in 1753, the next year, and lasted nominally seven years, though it was unsafe to venture west of the Catawba until after 1763, and few incurred the risk of doing so before 1770. 'Hunting John' McDowell first entered 'Swan Pond,' about three miles above Quaker Meadows, but sold that place without occupying it, to Colonel Waightstill Avery, and established his home where his son Joseph [of Pleasant Gardens] and grandson James [Moffett McDowell] afterwards lived, and where, still later, Adolphus Erwin [brother-in-law of James] lived for years before his death. His home is three miles north of Marion on the road leading to Bakersville and Burnsville. The name of Pleasant Gardens was afterwards applied not only to this home, but to the place where Col. John Carson* lived high up the Catawba Valley, at the mouth of Buck Creek."

*John Carson (1752-1841) first married Rachel Matilda McDowell (1756-1795), "Hunting John" McDowell's eldest daughter and older sister of Joseph McDowell (1758-1795), of Pleasant Gardens. In 1797, widower John Carson married Joseph "P.G." McDowell's widow Mary Moffett McDowell (1768-1825).

The McDowells' Legacy of Service

Excerpt of a letter from Samuel McDowell, Jr, of Mercer County, Kentucky, to his brother-in-law General Andrew Reid of Rockbridge County, Virginia, dated 22 September 1813:

    "There were seven of the family out last fall and winter [i.e., in the war], and they all behaved well . . . Brother Joseph is [Isaac Shelby's] adjutant-general, and my son John his assistant. William McD.'s sons, Sam. and Madison, and James McDowell's son John are also with him . . . My son Abram was out with the army all last winter; he was with Colonel Campbell at Massasineway. He went out last spring as assistant quartermaster-general from this state; he was taken down with the fever in July last, and has not yet entirely recovered. I could hardly prevent him from going out with Shelby . . . I believe it is the wish of all Kentuckians that the war should be prosecuted with vigor."
Samuel McDowell, Jr, [1764-1834] son of Colonel Samuel McDowell and Mary McClung, had entered the Revolutionary army as a private in General Lafayette's troops, and was present at the surrender of Lord Cornwallis at Yorktown in 1781. He became the first United States Marshall for Kentucky, appointed by George Washington in 1787, and served for twelve years. During the Indian war of 1811, he served under Kentucky General Charles Scott.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

"... the transmontane men..."

From History of the McDowells and Connections, by John Hugh McDowell, pub. 1918, C. B. Johnston, pp. 234-235:

    On the 29th of August, 1780, Colonel Ferguson moved into Troy (now Rutherford County) and camped, first at Gilberttown, three miles north of Rutherfordton, with the purpose of capturing Charles McDowell and destroying his command, and ultimately crossing into Washington and Sullivan counties (now Tennessee) and dealing with Shelby and Sevier of the Watauga settlement. Ferguson left Gilberttown with a detachment in search of Charles McDowell, but McDowell laid in ambush at Bedford Hill, on Crane [sic, Cane] Creek, and fired upon his forces while crossing the creek at Cowan's Ford. Major Dunlap was wounded and Ferguson was forced to retire to Gilberttown.
    After this affair, Charles McDowell retreated across the mountains to warn Shelby and Sevier of the threatened desolation of their country, and to invite their co-operation in an attack on Ferguson. It was agreed that the transmontane men should be gathered as expeditiously as possible, while McDowell should send messengers to Colonels Cleveland and Hernando, of Wilkes County, and Major Joseph Winston, of Surrey. The energies of Shelby, of Sullivan and Sevier, of Washington County, N. C., then embracing the present State of Tennessee, were quickened by the message which Ferguson had released a prisoner to convey, to the effect that he would soon cross the mountains, hang the leaders and lay that country waste with fire and sword.
    The clans were summoned to meet at Quaker Meadows on the 30th of September, 1780. Meantime Charles McDowell returned to watch Ferguson, protect cattle by assailing foraging parties, and give information to Shelby and Sevier of Ferguson's movements.
    Rev. Samuel Doak invoked the blessings of God upon the Watauga men, as they left for King's Mountain to meet Ferguson, whose blasphemous boast had been that God Almighty could not drive him from his position. Those trustful old Scotchmen afterwards believed in their hearts that the hand of God was in the movement which cost him his life and destroyed his force.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Charles McDowell & The Kings Mountain Command

From "The McDowells of Burke County Divided Over Who Commanded at King's Mountain," A Sketch by Judge M. L. McCorkle, Charlotte Democrat, Charlotte, NC, 6 July 1894:

    [Joseph] McDowell [b. 1715], of Quaker Meadows, married Margaret O'Neil. They were married in Ulster, Ireland. They determined to encounter all the perils in search of what better fortune might await them on this side of the broad ocean. They first settled in Pennsylvania. Thence they soon moved to Winchester, Va. There their sons, Charles and Joe, were born—the former in 1743; the latter in 1755. They removed to North Carolina and settled at Quaker Meadows. Their sons soon grew to manhood. Charles, afterwards General Charles, early embarked in the War of the Revolution. He was soon placed in command of Burke and Rutherford Counties, a large military district at that time. Stoutly he had held the mountain passes against the Indians, and had made several successful expeditions against the Cherokees; one called the Rutherford campaign, another the Stono expedition. He was engaged in a number of skirmishes with the Tories. He had a small force under him to resist Col. Ferguson. With this force he went across the mountains to obtain assistance, and was in consultation with Colonels Shelby and Sevier. It was decided that each should make an effort to raise all the men he could, and that they should meet on the Wautauga. Colonel Shelby informed Colonel William Campbell, of Washington County, Virginia, of their purpose and asked them to join them. They met on the Wautauga and were joined by Colonels Cleveland, Campbell, Sevier and others. They immediately crossed the mountains near the head of the Catawba river. They ascertained that they were nearly all of the same rank, and had no general officer to command them. It was decided to send Colonel Charles McDowell to Hillsboro, to see General Gates and procure a general officer to command the troops. In the meantime, they elected Colonel Campbell, the red-headed Argyle, as commander-in-chief of all the forces present.
    It is said that Colonel Campbell was placed in command through courtesy, on account of his being from a sister State and also on account of his having the largest number of men under him. Colonel Charles McDowell turned his regiment over to the command of Major Joe McDowell, of Pleasant Garden, until he should return from his mission; but the great battle was fought before he returned. This was the last of Colonel Charles McDowell's military career. He lived many years after the war at his paternal home Quaker Meadows, and served his country and district many times in the Senate of North Carolina, from 1783 to 1788. He died at Quaker Meadows greatly beloved and respected by all who knew him. The following tablet was placed over his grave: "To the memory of General Charles McDowell, A Whig officer in the Revolutionary War, who died, as he had lived, a patriot, the 31st of March, 1815, aged about 70 years."

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Joseph McDowell Who's Who

Newton, N.C.
June 17th, 1880

W.S. Pearson, Esq.

My dear Sir:

The confusion alluded to by you has grown out of the erroneous data furnished to Mr. Wheeler, who confounded the names of Gen. & Col. Jos. McDowell, and indeed ignored the latter entirely, in his History of N.C.
Gen. Jos. lived on John's river in Burke county, and was not in the war of the Revolution as an officer. He obtained his commission in the Militia after the war--or, his title was honorary. He was a brother of Gen. Charles. He was a remarkably fine looking man; was social in his habits; genial in his disposition; and popular among the people. He was member of Congress 1793-1795. Gen. Irving McDowell spring from him. He and Col. Jos. married sisters--Misses Moffett of Virginia & there is a strong family likeness among their descendants.
Col. Jos. McDowell was the only son of "Hunting" John. He was born at the Pleasant Gardens Feb[ruar]y 25th 1758, & there he lived & died and was always spoken of as Col. Jos. of the Pleasant Gardens in contradistinction to Gen. Jos.
He was an ardent patriot, and must have had considerable taste for military life. He was in Gen. Rutherford's campaign against the Cherokee Indians in 1776, and although only 18 years old at the time, must have been an officer for he killed an Indian in battle with his sword. This statement was made to me by Maj. Ben. Burgin of McDowell Co., who was personally well acquainted with all the members of the McDowell family of that day, and learned this fact from an eye-witness who was a near relative of his wife's.
Col. Jos. McDowell was at the head of a body of troops in the battle of the Cowpens; led a small force at Ramsour's Mill; and at King's Mountain, commanded Gen. Charles McDowell's regiment--having the rank of Major. At that time he was only 22 years of age. He was very active in getting up the force to act in conjunction with Campbell, Sevier, Shelby & others, and a skirmish which he had with Ferguson's men in the lower part of Burke County, immediately before the rendezvous on the Watauga, alarmed Ferguson and caused him to commence his retreat from Gilbert Town. He it was for whom McDowell County was named, and Maj. Ben Burgin prided himself in having been the first to suggest the name.
Col. Jos. McDowell was a man of great personal dignity. He was remarkably modest and gentle in his manner, and retiring in his disposition. He had very little taste for political life; yet, in deference to the wishes of the people, who had the greatest reverence and friendship for him, he represented them frequently in the state Senate; was their member in the State Convention which met to consider the question of adopting the Federal Constitution in Hillsboro July 1788; and represented them in Congress 1795-1797.
Intellectually he was a man of no small ability, and wielded a great influence, not only among the people in his part of the state, but in Legislative bodies, when a member. In his opinion, the Federal Constitution did not sufficiently guard the rights of the States, and the liberties of the people. He therefore actively opposed its adoption. This convention rejected it by a vote of 184 to 84.
Physically he was always delicate, and died a young man in the latter part of 1798 or in 1799*—being only about 40 years old. His children were John McDowell of Rutherford County, James [Moffett McDowell] of Yancey Co., and Anne, who married Capt. Charles, son of Gen. Charles McDowell of Burke Co.
His widow married Col. John Carson, and was the mother of the Hon. Samuel P. Carson, & other children.
Very truly yours,

G. W. Michal

(Letter of Dr. G.W. Michal (1825-1892), Physician of Newton, North Carolina. From the W.S. Pearson Papers, Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina Library, Chapel Hill, NC)
*Enough data exists to support the death date for Joseph McDowell of Pleasant Gardens to be in 1795. His father "Hunting John" McDowell's May 1796 will names his newly orphaned grandson Joseph who was born in January 1796, and also mentions a "current guardian." Joseph "P.G." McDowell's widow Mary Moffett remarried in 1797 to Colonel John Hazzard Carson. Their first child Samuel Price Carson was born 22 January 1798. (John Carson was a widower. His first wife was P.G.'s older sister Rachel Matilda McDowell, who died in 1795.)

Friday, December 21, 2007

Joseph McDowell & Draper's Misstatement

From King's Mountain and Its Heroes: History of the Battle of King's Mountain, by Lyman Copeland Draper, pub. 1881, P.G. Thomson:

    Joseph McDowell, Sr., of Scotch-Irish descent, was born in Ireland in 1715—reared a weaver, married Margaret O'Neil, and early migrated to Pennsylvania. He soon after settled in Winchester, Virginia, where his sons, Charles and Joseph, were born—the latter in 1756. A brother of the elder Joseph McDowell, known in after years as "Hunting John McDowell," early removed to the Catawba Valley, settling that beautiful tract, Pleasant Garden, sometime prior to 1758; and at some period not very long thereafter, his brother Joseph McDowell, Sr., followed to that wild frontier region, locating at the Quaker Meadows, where his family was reared.
Joseph McDowell of Pleasant Gardens, Burke County, North Carolina was my 4x great-grandfather. Extensive genealogical research on my mother's McDowell lineage has prompted me to offer corrections to Lyman Draper's misstatements regarding the various related Josephs McDowell. Draper's confusion is understandable in context of the numerous close relatives who shared the same name and served their country one way or another in the early years of the American republic. A re-write of the Draper excerpt may help to clarify the genealogy:
    Joseph McDowell II, of Scotch-Irish descent, was born in Ireland in 1715—reared a weaver, married Margaret O'Neil, and early migrated to Pennsylvania. He soon after settled in Winchester, Virginia, where his sons, Charles and Joseph III, were born—the latter in 1756. "Hunting John" McDowell, son of the elder Joseph's own brother Charles (born c. 1697), early removed to the Catawba Valley, settling that beautiful tract, Pleasant Gardens, sometime prior to 1758. By 1762, Joseph McDowell II followed to that wild frontier region, locating at the Quaker Meadows, where his family was reared.

The following is a descent line from Joseph McDowell I (1668-1738):

1 Joseph McDOWELL
Birth: 1668, Ulster, Ireland
Death: 1738, Carlisle, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania
Father: Thomas McDOWELL (1631-)
Mother: Anne LOCKE (1640-)
Spouse: Ann CALHOUN (1655-)
Marriage: Ireland
(abt 1697-May 1754) (1.1)
Robert (1709-10 Oct 1770)
William (1711-)
Joseph J. (II) (27 Feb 1715-bef Nov 1771) (1.2)

1.1 Charles McDOWELL
Birth: abt 1697, Ulster, Ireland
Death: 4 Jul 1754, Anson County, North Carolina
Father: Joseph McDOWELL (1668-1738)
Mother: Ann CALHOUN (1655-)
Spouse: Rachel (abt 1702)
Marriage: 1719, County Tyrone, Ireland
John “Hunting John” (abt 1717-1796) (1.1.1)
Ann (abt 1720-)
Rachel (1722-bef Nov 30 1780)
Mary (1725-)
Hannah (abt 1727-aft 1790)
Elizabeth (1729-)

1.1.1 John “Hunting John” McDOWELL
Birth: abt 1717, Glenoe, County Antrim, Ulster, Ireland
Death: 18 Oct 1796, Pleasant Gardens, Burke County, North Carolina
Father: Charles McDOWELL (abt 1697-4 Jul 1754)
Mother: Rachel (abt 1702)
Spouse: Ann “Annie” EVANS (abt 1726-25 Apr 1814)
Marriage: abt 1746, North Carolina
Rachel Matilda (Jan 1756-Jan 1795)
Joseph “P.G.” (25 Feb 1758-aft May 1796) (
Ann “Annie” (abt 1759-1829) Joseph “P.G.” McDOWELL
Birth: 25 Feb 1758, Pleasant Gardens, Burke County, North Carolina
Death: before May 1796, Pleasant Gardens, Burke (now McDowell) County, North Carolina
Father: John "Hunting John" McDOWELL (abt 1717-18 Oct 1796)
Mother: Ann "Annie" EVANS (abt 1726-25 Apr 1814)
Spouse: Mary MOFFETT (28 Feb 1768-6 Jun 1825)
Marriage: 3 May 1786, Rockbridge County, Virginia
John Moffett (9 Feb 1787-16 Jun 1855)
Elizabeth “Betsy” (1788-bef 1790)
George (30 Nov 1788-14 May 1804)
James Moffett (22 Jun 1791-29 May 1854)
Ann “Annie” (25 Oct 1793-1 Nov 1859)
Joseph Moffett (10 Jan 1796-22 Aug 1800)

1.2 Joseph J. McDOWELL (II)
Birth: 27 Feb 1715, County Tyrone, Ulster, Ireland
Death: before November 1771, Quaker Meadows, Burke County, North Carolina
Father: Joseph McDOWELL (1668-1738)
Mother: Ann CALHOUN (1655-)
Spouse: Margaret O’NEILL (abt 1717-abt 1790)
Marriage: abt 1740, Ulster, Ireland
Sarah Nancy (10 May 1739-bef 1800)
Elizabeth (1741-15 May 1825)
Hugh (1742-30 Mar 1772)
Charles (18 Oct 1743-31 Mar 1815)
Hannah (1747-24 Jan 1817)
Jane (1750-1838)
John (Aug 1751-24 Mar 1822)
Joseph “Quaker Meadows Joe” (III) (15 Feb 1756-11 Jul 1801) (1.2.1)

1.2.1  Joseph “Quaker Meadows Joe” McDOWELL (III)
Birth: 15 Feb 1756, Winchester, Frederick County, Virginia
Death: 11 Jul 1801, Quaker Meadows (family estate), Burke County, North Carolina
Father: Joseph J. McDOWELL (27 Feb 1715-bef Nov 1771)
Mother: Margaret O’NEILL (abt 1717-abt 1790)
Spouse: Margaret MOFFETT (26 Dec 1763-1815)
Marriage: 1783, Rockbridge County, Virginia
Sarah (5 Feb 1784-19 Aug 1827)
Elizabeth (6 Feb 1786-25 Aug 1821)
Margaret (26 Oct 1787-21 Mar 1808)
Hannah (24 Dec 1789-28 Aug 1850)
Hugh Hervey (20 Jan 1792-1864)
Celia (20 Feb 1795-28 Oct 1865)
Clarissa Mira (10 Jan 1798-abt 1863)
Joseph Jefferson (13 Nov 1800-17 Jan 1877)

[For additional sourcing, see blog entry of 10/24/07, Joseph McDowell Who's Who and other entries tagged "Joseph McDowell"]

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Kings Mountain: Who Was in Charge?

From History of the McDowells and Connections, by John Hugh McDowell, pub. 1918, C. B. Johnston, page 265:

    Who Commanded At Kings Mountain? 
    By Frank McDowell 
    The facts as to who commanded at King's Mountain, as near as I can get them are as follows:
    From history and from tradition, having heard it discussed by my father, my uncles, my grand-uncle, [Alexander] Hamilton Erwin [b. 1808], and Aunt Matilda Cecelia Erwin [b. 1808, twin sister of Hamilton], who lived to be eighty-one (81) years old [actually 85], also from my mother, who was Sarah Erwin, and noted for her excellent memory for dates, births and deaths, I gained many of the facts. They all asserted that the reason Gen. Charles McDowell was not in command at King's Mountain was because he was on a "spree" at the time. Others not related to General Charles, have expressed themselves that he had grown a little lukewarm for the cause. Col. [John Hazzard] Carson, son-in-law of ''Hunting John" McDowell was pro-British, and offered to go to South Carolina and ask protection in order to save "Pleasant Gardens" from being raided, but Old John McDowell said, "No! he would drive his cattle into North Cove, and the British be d----d." Hunting John was 63 years old at the time. 
    My mother was a close neighbor to "Quaker Meadows," as "Erwin's Delight" (known today as Bellevue) was only two miles away. She was the schoolmate and great friend of Margaret McDowell [b. 1828], the daughter of Captain Charles [b. 1785, son of Gen. Charles] and Annie McDowell [b. 1793, daughter of Joseph "P.G." McDowell, b. 1758, and Mary Moffett, b. 1768], who was of the "Pleasant Gardens" branch. I have heard her say that "Uncle Charlie, when intoxicated, would tell his wife that it was his father who commanded at King's Mountain," and she would answer that it was her father—Joseph, of Pleasant Gardens. At any rate the china taken from Colonel Ferguson's tent comes through Annie McDowell, of "Pleasant Gardens," to the "Quaker Meadow" branch of McDowells. Judge Gray Bynum, who married Hennie Erwin (my first cousin) gave it back to my sister, Margaret Erwin McDowell [b. 1856, great-granddaughter of Col. Joseph "P.G." McDowell,] who now has it. We are descended from from the "Pleasant Gardens" branch.

John Hugh McDowell, re: the Josephs McDowell

From History of the McDowells and Connections, by John Hugh McDowell, pub. 1918, C. B. Johnston:

    Joe, of Pleasant Garden, was a mere boy at the commencement of the Revolutionary War. Young as he was, he immediately went into active service in the Patriotic Army. He soon was promoted to the rank of major, in which his cousin Charles was colonel. He was engaged with it in every fight where his cousin commanded. When his cousin Charles retired from the command of the Burke and Rutherford Regiment he was placed in command. At the battle of King's Mountain he commanded the regiment, and Colonel Joe, of Quaker Meadows, commanded the right wing of a "portion" of the regiment "under him." Hence, there is a dispute, which had the chief command in that gallant struggle. They were equally brave, equally patriotic, and equally able. One is known as Major Joe of Pleasant Garden, the other as Colonel Joe of Quaker Meadows. Both were at the Cowpens, where Colonel Tarleton succumbed to the sturdy blows of Col. Morgan. Major Joe possessed the fighting qualities which distinguished the family in all its branches. In the Rutherford campaign he killed an Indian in a hand-to-hand fight. He served from the beginning of the war to the close. He was not only a distinguished fighter, but an able statesman and civilian. He was a lawyer by profession. Several of his law books are now in my possession, in which he signed his own name. His autograph is "J. McDowell, P. G."