Revolutionary War Patriot Lt. John Graham of

Rowan County, North Carolina and Garrard County, Kentucky

Lieutenant John Graham was born in 1742, in North Carolina. It is well documented that John lived for many years in Rowan County, North Carolina. Early Rowan County was home for many early Grahams, and there has been much debate about which of these many Grahams was the father of John.

John Graham's service in the American Revolution is well documented. The North Carolina General Assembly allowed payment to him, "the 14th July 1781 Lieut. John Graham was allowed fourteen pounds thirteen shillings specie for militia service by the Board of Auditors, April 5th."

John probably left Rowan County, North Carolina, in the mid-1780's. On October 12, 1785, John Graham and wife, Margaret, sold 318 acres on both sides of Hunting Creek in the Forks of the Yadkin River. The selling price was 100 pounds. The land being sold adjoined property owned by James Andrews, John McGuire, S.D. Brandon, and Brice Gather (Deed Book 11, page 496). This deed is important in that it listed John's wife and therefore helped to differentiate him from all of the other John Grahams of Rowan County.

John Graham next appears in Kentucky records. He first resided in Lincoln County. It is important to know that early Lincoln County actually included much of the entire state of what is now Kentucky. One of the earliest mentions of John Graham, in Kentucky, was in a June 19, 1787, Lincoln County Court Order Book:

John Grimes is appointed overseer of the road from Baylor's Mill to the North Fork of Gilberts Creek, in place of Walker Baylor.

John Graham's coming to Kentucky may have been a result of his participation in the Revolutionary War. It seems that just following the war, Graham was arrested and jailed for theft of a horse owned by Tory, Michael Holt. Without being cleared, he came to Kentucky. The heirs of Michael Holt traced John to Kentucky and were still attempting to collect for their father's horse. In summary, John Graham's "trading for" Holt's horse during the Revolution was apparently an accepted practice approved by his superiors. He should be viewed as a patriot of the American Revolution - not as a horse thief.

John Graham was married to Margaret. Her maiden name has not been found. The Bible record lists their son, Enoch. The following is a list of known children of John and Margaret Graham:

The Garrard County census taken in 1810 listed John Graham. Listed were one male, age 16-26; two males 45 and up; 2 females ages 16-18; and 1 female 45 and up. Only John was listed by name, so there is no way to determine the identity of the extra older man.

According to the Woods Family Bible, Margaret Graham died March 8, 1819, at age 73. From that point on, only one John Graham is listed in the Garrard tax list and it is impossible to tell if this is John Sr. or Jr. No tax lists after Margaret's death show John owning any property anywhere.

John Graham died five years later, on July 10, 1824. He was age 82. John and Margaret's deaths must have been in Garrard County, but their graves have not been found. On February 20, 1826, James McFadden, John Graham's son-in-law paid the necessary bond and became administrator of the John Graham estate. Apparently, neither John nor Margaret left a will.

The complete documentation of this information about Lt. John Graham is included in a chapter in my Rogers Book.

This page is designed and maintained by Lyndon Irwin. If you have more information on this line let us know.