Evan SHELBY, Jr. was baptized 23 Oct 1720 at Tregaron, Cardiganshire, Wales., son of Evan and Catherine Morgan Shelby, Sr. who came to the colonies about 1734. Evan Sr. died in Frederick Co, MD in 1751. Evan Jr. became a fur trader, was in Braddock's Campaign (1755), served as first lieutenant to Capt. Alexander BEALL in 1767-8, and later held commissions in both MD and PA. About 1773, he removed to Sapling Grove where he erected Shelby's Fort in what was then Fincastle County, Virginia, and later Washington County, Virginia, but is today Bristol, Sullivan County, Tennessee. In 1774, he commanded the Fincastle Company in Dunmore's War, and was at the battle of Point Pleasant on 10 Oct of that year. In 1776, Virginia Governor Patrick Henry appointed him Major in the troops commanded by Col. William Christian against the Cherokees. On December 21, of that same year, he was appointed colonel of the militia of newly-created county of Washington, and in 1779, he led an expedition againts the Chickamauga Indian towns on the lower Tennessee River.

In October 1780, Shelby and his volunteer militia joined almost a thousand frontiersmen in the march on British Colonel Patrick FERGUSON. The one-hour Battle of King's Mountain, at which FERGUSON was killed and the British troups routed, is credited by most with having turning the tides of war in the south.

In 1781, Shelby was elected a member of its Senate, and in 1786, the North Carolina Assembly appointed him brigadier general of militia of the Washington District of North Carolina. In March 1787, North Carolina Commissioner Evan Shelby negotiated a temporary truce with Col. John Sevier, governor of the short-lived State of Franklin. In August 1787, he was elected governor of the State of Franklin to succeed Sevier, but declined. He resigned as brigadier general on October 29,1787, the last of his public service.

Evan SHELBY, Jr. married (1) 1774, Letitia COX, d/o David COX of Frederick County, MD, d 1777; m (2) 1787, Isabella ELLIOTT, who survived him. He died in 1794, and is buried at Bristol. Among his descendants were sons, Isaac SHELBY and Evan SHELBY III, both of whom also fought at King's Mountain.

Isaac SHELBY, born 1750, present-day Washington County, then Frederick County, MD, son of Evan and Laetitia COX Shelby, removed to Fincastle County, Virginia ca 1773; served as a lieutenant in his father's Fincastle Company, at the battle of Point Pleasant; appointed Captain by the Virginia Committee of Safety in Jul 1776, and in 1779, became a member of the Virginia House of Burgess for Washington County. He was appointed by Virginia Governor Jefferson as a Major in the escort of guards for the commissioners appointed to run the western boundary line between Virginia and North Carolina (See Squabble State). In 1782, he was a member of the legislature of North Carolina and later served as commissioner to settle claims on the Cumberland River and to lay off solders' lands near the site of Nashville. He later removed to Boonesborough, Kentucky, where he married Susanna HART. He sat in the conventioin that framed the first constitution of Kentucky, and was elected that state's first Governor, was re-elected in 1812, serving until 1816. In the War of 1812, he commanded 4,000 troops under General Harrison and marched into Canada in 1813 (at 63 years of age). He died July 18, 1826.


Land of Our Ancestors, Squabble State
Tennesseans in the Revolutionary War, Battle of King's Mountain
Ramsey's Annals of Tennessee (1853)
Summers' History of Southwest Virginia (1903)
Summers' Annals of Southwest Virginia (1929)
J.T. Scharf, History of Western Maryland (2 vols. 1882)
Evan Shelby, Jr., Shelby's Volunteers. Isaac Shelby, Shelby's Volunteers.

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