NOTES AND BIOGRAPHY FOR DAVID GASS


David Gass (1732-1806) started to Kentucky with Boone and his party in 1773 from North Carolina, but after a surprise attack by the Indians in which Boone's son was killed, the party turned back to the home of the Gass family at the most western point of civilization. There the Boone family lived in the cabin with the Gass family for two years, or until Boone and his thirty axemen left to cut a path through to the mouth of Otter Creek on the Kentucky River for Richard Henderson and his party in 1773. However, Gass had come with Boone and others to Kentucky during the period of waiting for more settled conditions. Gass and his family lived in Fort Boonesborough three years. There the women molded bullets and carried water during the siege, before moving in 1781 to Estill's Station where they lived five years.

Little Jennie Gass had a strange dream in the early morning of March 20, 1782. She dreamed that God had placed a ladder on which she might climb to heaven. Her dream was so real to her that she ran before breakfast to the cabins of all within the fort to tell them about it. Later in the morning she, with Monk, the Estill slave, and another man, went outside the fort to start a fire for making maple syrup when suddenly they were fallen upon by Indians. The one man out ran them and got within the stockade, but Monk was captured and Jennie was scalped and killed. The Battle of Little Mountain followed this act.
By 1786 David Gass had moved to the first county seat at Milford: the first court met in his home in 1786 and continued to meet there until a courthouse was provided. David Gass was appointed one of the Judges of the Court of Quarter Sessions by Patrick Henry." Gass died in 1806 leaving two daughters, Mary and Sarah, each of whom married a son of James Black, Sr., a Revolutionary soldier."

Daughters of the American Revolution Index, pg. # 1132: Gass, David: b c 1735 PA d 1806 KY m Sarah ----Capt. VA.

"Old Kentucky Entries and Deeds" by Willard Rouse Jillson, Sc.D., published 1987, page 210: "David Gess......Acres: 1,000.....Book A.....Pg. 247.....Entry Date: 1-07-1783...., Watercourse.....Green R." *(special note; the name is spelled Gess)

"Virginia's Colonial Soldiers" by Lloyd DeWitt Bockstruck, pub. 1988 in Baltimore, pages 201 and 202: "Albemarle County: Allen Howard and William Cabell, Jr. to pay a company of militia of his county under the command of Capt. James Nevil according to his muster roll to 8 Sept. 1758, 298.17.6; ......., David Gass. (....indicates a list of abt. 50 or so men)

Wisconsin Historical Society, Kentucky Papers (The Draper Collection), page # 283..., (1843) 11CC11-15: "(Shane, John D.) Interview with John Gass, near Paris, Ky. Data concerning his father, David Gass; capture of Boone and Callaway girls; siege of Boonesborough in September, 1778; William Bailey Smith, Edward Braley, John South, Ambrose Coffee, and William Collins at the siege; Maj. Joseph Kennedy and Maj. John Edwards mentioned; Estill's defeat. A.N. 5 pp."

Wisconsin Historical Society, Kentucky Papers (The Draper Collection)..., pgs. 531 and 532, 17CC191-209, n.d.: "(Shane, John D.) Memorandum of information obtained from Capt. Nathaniel Hart (Jr.) of Woodford County, Ky., consisting of biographical data on persons mentioned in "Ledger A" of Richard Henderson and Company, namely: Michael Stoner, Samuel Tate, Isaac Thrasher, Page Portwood, William Barton, Col. Thomas Slaughter, Col. James Harrod, Samuel Henderson, William Moore, Pemberton Rollins, Richard Burke, Squire Boone, Col. John Luttrell, Col. Richard Henderson, Samuel Coubern (Coburn?), Benjamin and Thomas Pettit,* Daniel Boone, Nathaniel Henderson, Richard Hogan, Maj. Thomas Quirk, Azariah Davis, Jesse Benton, Edward Bradley, Hugh McGary, William Hays, John Floyd, John Mann, William Baird, Julius Saunders, William Dill, Aaron Lewis, Col. John Williams, Richard Callaway, Elijah Nunn, John Cowan, Anthony Bledsoe, John King, John Martin, Peter Renfroe, *David Gass, John Brown, Charles Robertson, Joshua Barton Sr., Col. Wm. Whitley, Flanders Callaway, John Kennedy, David McGee, Alexander Neely, William Cooper, John McMillan, Richard Brashear, Barnett Tatom, Walter Overton, John Gordon, Dominick Flanigan, John Wilson, John Daugherty, Nathaniel Randolph, Maj. William Bailey Smith, Wm. Crabtree, Jacob Beaufman, Wm. Blevens, Thomas Brooks, Tilman Craddlebaugh, --------Hynes,---------Hinkston, James Leeper, Francis McConnell, William Stagg, Oswald Townsend, John Todd, and Capt. Nathaniel Hart. A.N. 19 pp."

Wisconsin Historical Society, Kentucky Papers, (The Draper Collection), pg. # 398, April 25, 1875. "Breckenridge, Preston. Breckenridge, Ill. Letter to L(yman) C. Draper. In reply to request for information about Simon Kenton; settlement of his father's family in Bourbon County, Ky.; death of his father in 1813; his own birth in 1807; John Gass, James Duncan, John Alexander, and Henry Clay among the first settlers of Bourbon County; "Bryan Station" named for George Bryan; William T. Jones, a grandson of George Bryan, living in Sangamon, Ill.; reference to Col. Wm. Hamilton of Nicholas Co., Ky. A.L.S. 2 pp.

Fort Boonesborough Settlers, "Bluegrass Roots," published by the Kentucky Genealogical Society, reprinted in an article by H. Thomas Tudor about the "Early Settlers of Fort Boonesborough." The article was published in Volume 5, No. 1, p. 1-14.

Gass, James (1775) son of Capt. David Gass
Gass, Jennie (1775) dau. of Capt. David Gass, killed by Indians
Gass, John (1775) son of Capt. David Gass, settled Bourbon Co., Ky.
Gass, John (1775) (sorry repeat) *this is exactly the way it appears.
Gass, Mary daughter of Capt. David Gass; mar. William Black at the fort in 1778
Gass, Sarah daughter of Capt. David Gass; mar. John Black
Gass, Sarah (1775) Mrs. David Gass, wife of Capt. Gass
Gass, Capt. David (1775)
"Kentucky Retrospect" Noteworthy Personages and Events in Kentucky History...,
Reference: Collins History, Vol. 1;
Contributed by Miss Nina Visscher, Librarian, Kentucky State Historical Society. Others were: Moses Thomas came to Boonesborough with Enoch Smith, Richard Spurr and Charles Beale 1779; Ralph Morgan there 1779. (Bourbon suits); David Gass and son, John; William Bailey Smith; Edward Bradley; William Collins (at siege); Whitson George; John Cartwright; Lewis Vallandingham; John Cameron; Pemberton Rolins; Francis Calloway; Oswald Townsend; Thomas Hartgrove; James Kenny; J. Hite; Frederick Couchman; Ref: Draper mss.

Captain John Holder's Company, June 10, 1779 (in Madison County, at and near Boonesborough): John Holder, Capt., Uriel Ark, Thos. Bailey, Bland Ballard, John Baughman, G. Michael Bedinger, James Berry, James Bryan, James Bunten, John Butler, John Callaway, Elijah Collins, Josiah Collins, Wm. Collins, John Constant, David Cook, Wm. Coombs, Wm. Cradlebaugh, John Dumpord, James Estill, Edmund Fear, *David Gass, Stephen Hancock, Wm. Hancock, John Hawiston, Wm. Hays, Jesse Hodges, Jeremiah Horn, Robert Kirkham, Samuel Kirkham, John Lee, Charles Lockhart, John McCollum, Wm. McGee, Ralph Morgan, Wm. Morris, James Perry, John Pleck, Samuel Porter, Nicholas Proctor, Reuben Proctor, Pemberton Rollins, Hugh Ross, Bartlett Searcy, Reuben Searcey, John South, Sr., John South, Jr., John South, younger, Thos. South, Barney Stagner, Jacob Stearns, John Stephenson, Benoni Vallandigham, Daniel Wilcoxson, Moses Wilson. *(names are spelled exactly as they appeared)

"Kentucky Retrospect" Page # 165...,

"At the siege of Boonesborough there were, according to William Buchannon's deposition, 340 Indians and not more than 60 men in the fort, including garrison soldiers and settlers. However, the pioneers in their petition of October 14, 1778, state they had withstood constant war for four year from the Indians animated by the rewards of Governor Hamilton (British).

List of names taken from depositions given in Richmond, Kentucky, 1801, 1806, 1807, 1808, 1811, 1814 by pioneers at Boonesborough (date opposite names indicates time they reached Boonesborough, according to deposition): James Anderson: Thos. Allen (Surveyor Mercer Co.); Daniel Boone, 1775; Anthony Bleasco (Surveyor): James Berry (Apr. 1779); Wm. Benton; George Boone; Wm. Bush (March 1775); Joseph Barnett; James Bridges; James Bryant (Before 1778); Edward Baxter (Col.); John Boyle (1775); Moses Bledsoe; George Bedinger; Squire Boone; Green Clay (Surveyor, Fall of 1780); Robert Caldwell; John Callaway; Wm. Cradlebaugh (to Ky., 1768-1775); Wm. Cooper; John Crooke (Surveyor); David Crews; Elijah Crews; Jacob Coons; Wm. Calk; Thos. Collins; John Colefoot; Lewis Craig; David Cook; John Constant; Samuel Duree; John Durbin; John Doniphan; Samuel Davis; Wm. Dryden; Samuel Estill (1779); James Estill (Capt. 1775); Talton Embry; Sally Estill (Born at Ft. Boonesborough, Oct. 19, 1782); Boudee Estill; Ben Estill; Richard Epperson (1776); Joseph Fowler; Robert Fleming; John Farrar, 1775 (Farrons); James Finley; (Mr.) Wm. Fall (Surveyor); Higgason Grubbs (Capt.) 1778; James Gates, 1776;*David Gass (Guess, Gist); Samuel Gilbert; Martin Gentry; Peter Guerrant; Jesse Hodges (Surveyor, Oct. 1777 to 1786); Wm. Irvine; David C. Irvine; John Kennedy (killed fall of 1780); Wm. Kavanaugh; Charles Kavanaugh (son of Wm.); Joseph Kennedy, 1776; Thos. Lanham; David Lynch (Surveyor Dec. 24, 1779); Samuel Logan; Abraham Lewis; Lawrence Long; Thos. McQuean; Jesse Morris; (Miss) Jacob Myers; Wm. Miller; Wm. Mays; Thos. Mosely; Thos. Miller; Ralph Morgan; Wm. Martin; Wm. Morgan; Nicholas Meriwether; Neichael Overstreet; Tyree Oldham; John Peak, 1781; Thos. Phelps; Josiah Phelps, 1776 (Son of Thos.); John Pitman; Reuben Proctor; Joseph Proctor (1778); Nicholas Proctor (Capt. 1778); Rachel Proctor (Widow of Capt. James Estill. Nicholas Proctor her second husband); James Proctor; Yelverton Peyton, 1780; James Russel (Before 1778); Robert Rhodes; James Reed; Joseph Rice; George Robinson; Samuel Rice; Dudley Stone; Richard Searcy; John Snoddy (1775); Asa Searcy; (Gen.) John South; Samuel Snoddy; Michael Sherley; Michael Stoner (Surveyor and Hunter, 1775); Thos. Swearingen; Benoni Swearingen; John Tanner (Turner); Hale Talbott; Peter Taylor, 1780; Lawrence Thompson (1780); James Thompson; John Taylor (Baptist Preacher); Oswald Townsend (Surveyor 1775); (Capt.) Thomas Twitty; Joshua Townsend; Wm. Turpin; Solomon Turpin; David V. Walker; Joel Walker; Aquilla White (April 1779); (Capt.) John Whitaker; William Williams; Wyate Wilkerson; Richard Wells; Thos. Warren; Archibald Woo--(the last two letters did not copy); (Capt.) Dec. 1781; Adam Woods (135 names mentioned in deposition.)

"Kentucky: Land of Contrast" by Thomas D. Clark, Professor of the University of Kentucky at Lexington, page # 22:
(*I'm including this brief narrative account of the same Boonesborough incident in order to offer evidence of the discrepancy in the spelling of the surname, Gass/Gess.
"The opening act of one of Boonesboro's several domestic ordeals occurred on Sunday afternoon, July 14, 1776, when Jemima Boone, and Elizabeth and Frances Callaway set out across the Kentucky to visit a neighbor. The girls paddled a canoe diagonally across the river from the fort, and at the moment its nose rooted into the gravel on the far bank a tawny arm snatched it aground and four Shawnee bucks laid hold of the girls, but not before the spunky Betsey Callaway had bounced an oar off a brave's head. The younger girls were paralyzed with fright, but Betsey kept her wits and was about as much bother to the Shawnees as a gnawing bear would have been. The Shawnees had always shown a fondness for female captives and now they had three young ones in tow. Immediately they headed home by way of the Blue Licks and the buffalo trace to parade their prizes in the Ohio villages.
There was pandemonium in the fort when news spread that the girls were missing. Daniel Boone dashed into the woods with one search party while Colonel Callaway led another. Time was of the essence---in fact, it might already be too late if the Indians could beat their white pursuers to the Ohio River. They might have done so had the unruly girls not created so many delays by complaining and sulking. Never had three Kentucky girls been pursued by such illustrious company. Besides Boone, who had the advantage of having twice been prisoner of the Shawnees and now demonstrated his expert woodsmanship, there were William Bailey Smith, John Holder, Samuel Henderson, John Floyd, Nationaial and David Hart, John Martin, John McMillan, William Bush, *John and David Gess, and Flanders Callaway. Three miles below the Blue Licks the Indians stopped for the night, and here they were surprised and shot, and the tattered girls escorted home as Kentucky's first heroines. As their rewards, Samuel Henderson married Betsey Callaway and Flanders Callaway claimed Jemima Boone for his bride.

"Kentucky Retrospect" Noteworthy Personages and Events in Kentucky History, 1792 -1942, Pgs. 183 and 185.

"Estill's Station: Settled by Captain James and Samuel Estill, three miles southeast of Richmond, Madison County, in 1781. Captain James Estill and his men were defeated and slain by Indians March 22, 1782, on Hinkston Creek 2 miles from present Mt. Sterling. There were nine families in the station April, 1801, and in the autumn of that year the men living there were James and Samuel Estill, Nicholas Proctor, Thomas Warren, David Lynch, Peter Walker, John Colefoot, James Proctor, George Robinson, Samuel Rice, Thomas Miller, *David Gass, Michael Sherly, James Hamilton and Green Clay. Jesse Hodges, Peter Hackett, Micael Bedinger, John Webber, Stephen Hancock, John South, Sr., were also there at different times. Ref.: Kentucky Historical Register, Fayette and Bourbon County depositions."

"Revolutionary Soldiers Buried in Madison County" prepared from a research made by Mrs. Jerre B. Noland; Capt. David Gass (1732-1806), in active service in the militia of Albemarle County, Virginia. Was in the siege of Boonesborough in 1778. Buried near Caleast, where he, as recorded in the courthouse, gave one-hald acre forever, but the spot has been desecrated and all markers are gone. Grave is not marked. Historical Markers and Tablets, The D.A.R. Fort Boonesborough Marker, Tablet #111: "In testimony of the gratitude of posterity for the historic service of cutting for the Transylvania Company. The Transylvanic Trail, the first great pathway to the West, March-April 1775 from the Long Island of Holston River Tennessee to Otter Creek Kentucky by that gallant band of Axemen Pioneers and Indian fighters who at the risk and loss of life opened the doors of destiny to the white race in Kentucky and the West. Daniel Boone, Squire Boone, Edward Bradley, James Bridges, William Bush, Richard Callaway, Samuel Coburn, Jacob Crabtree, Benjamin Culbirth, *David Gass, John Hart, William Hays, Rebeccah Boone Hays, William Hicks, Edmund Jennings, Thomas Johnson, John Kennedy, John King, Thomas McDowell, Jeremiah McPheeters, William Miller, William Moore, James Noll, James Peeke, Bartlett Searcy, Michael Stoner, Samuel Tate, Samuel Tate, Jr., William Twetty, John Wardeman, Felix Walker, A Negro Man, and a Negro Woman. Erected by The Daughters of the American Revolution of North Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee and Kentucky, Under the Auspices of the Transylvanians of Henderson, Kentucky, 1935." Historical Markers and Tablets, The D.A.R. Fort Boonesborough Marker; On the top of the stone is the following; "Site of Fort Boonesborough, 1775-1783." On the side next to the entrace is this inscription: "In Memory of the Pioneers of Kentucky. Erected by the Boonesborough Chapter D.A.R., 1907." Then passing around the stone counter clock-wise appear the names of the following: "Bartlett Searcy, Robert Rodes, Pemberton Rollins, Michael Stoner, Peter Taylor, Thomas Tribble, Col. Isaac Shelby, Lt. Jared Williams, *Capt. Archibald Woods, Rev. Jas. Quisenberry, Christopher Harris, Richard Gentry, Galen White, Enoch Smith, James McMillan, Sr., Daniel Boone, Rebecca Boone, Jeimima Boone, Squire Boone, William Bentley, Col. Richard Callaway, Betsy Callaway, Frances Callaway, Adam Caperton, Gen. Green Clay, Capt. John Holder, Col. John Snoddy, Capt. John Kennedy, Capt. William Bush, David Chenault, Capt. James Estill, Samuel Estill, Col. Ezekial Field, Col. Nathaniel Hart, Col. Richard Henderson, Dr. Hines, Richard Hogan, *Capt. David Gass, Col. Wm. Irvine, Abraham Newland, Jesse Oldham, Yelverton Peyton, Anne Cuffey Peyton, Thomas Phelps, Josiah Phelps, George Phelps, Lucy Phelps, John Phelps, Joseph Proctor." "Old Kentucky Entries and Deeds", Jefferson Co., David Gess, 1,000 acres, Jan. 07, 1783. "Revolutionary Soldiers Buried in Madison Co., Kentucky" Prepared from a research made by Mrs. Jerre B. Noland. Excerpt taken from, "Glimpses of Historic Madison Co., Ky., by Jonathan Truman Dorris and Maud Weaver Dorris. "Capt. David Gass (1732-1806), in active service in the militia of Albemarle Co., Virginia. Was in the siege of Boonesborough in 1778. Buried near Caleast, where he, as recorded in the courthouse, gave one-half acre forever, but the spot has been desecrated and all markers are gone. Grave is not marked." lif.

"Kentucky Pioneer and Court Records" ... Compiled by Mrs. Harry Kennett McAdams Originally published: Lexington, Kentucky, 1929 ... Reprinted for Clearfield Co., Inc.



Lincoln County, Stanford Court House ... Abstracts of Wills and Deeds

James Estill ... Book B, page 242 ... To wife, Rachel. To Benjamin, Walles, James, and Jonathan Estill. Witnesses, David Gass, Samuel Estill. Written May 04, 1781. Probated Jan. 22, 1783.


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