A Biography of Adam Mitchell


A Biographical Sketch of
Adam Mitchell
(Ancestor of David and Roger Bowles, San Antonio S.A.R. Chapter)


Adam Mitchell was born in Chester County, Pennsylvania in c.a.1745 his parents were Robert and Margaret Mitchell members of the Scots-Irish "Nottingham Colony" which would acquire 33 plats from Lord Carteret of about 640 acres each in North Carolina. Adam's Father would acquire 1 of the land grants and additionally buy 107 acres that joined his land from Robert Donnell on October 2, 1762. The 107 acres became the Mitchell's home and adjoined property that in 1774 was chosen the site of the new Guilford County Courthouse. The growing community was, for lack of a better name, called Guilford County Courthouse.

Adam's Father died in 1775 and Adam became the overseer of his properties, which included a distillery, and tannery. He served in the militia on two expeditions to Wilmington in Thomas Blair's Company and as Captain of the Guard at the Guilford County Courthouse guarding captive Tories. His distillery supplied whisky for the Colonial Army's soldiers and his farm corn and fodder for their horses.

He would join other family members and neighbors on March 15, 1781 as a local militiaman on the front line of General Greene's well conceived defense of Guilford County Courthouse. This line was behind a wooden rail fence just south of his property and less than a mile from where his mother Margaret, wife Elizabeth, and 6 children had taken refuge in a well fortified spring house of the Mitchell Farm.

The local militia from Guildford were fighting to protect their families and property from the British as well as fighting for Independence. The local militia were no match for the well trained Hessian soldiers and their bayonets. Adam was captured and imprisoned. His Mother negotiated his release.

The battle ended in Adam Mitchell's corn field below the house that he and his Father had built 19 years earlier. His family survived the battle; the cornfield became a mass burial ground for casualties on both sides. The children had witnessed the bloody battle. The oldest son Robert helped bury the dead, his Mother and Grandmother cared for the wounded.

The family would never farm the land again knowing that such gallant fighting men of both armies lay under its soil. Today the farm of Adam Mitchell is known as The Guilford Courthouse National Military Park in Greensboro, NC, the first Revolutionary War battlefield to be preserved by the Federal Government.

Adam moved his family over the Appalachian Mountains into the Knob Creek area of western NC now Washington County, TN., acquiring land from his Father-in-Law John McMachen, continuing his agrarian pursuits until his death in 1802.





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Web Page Created:

16 August 2009


Web Page Updated:

16 August 2009