Mecklenburg, VA: War of 1812 Militia

Researching records from the War of 1812, I have found three militia units with men from Mecklenburg County, all in the 1st Virginia militia, under Colonel Byrne. Militia men typically served for three months during the war of 1812. I’ll be posting information about various men from Mecklenburg who served in these three militia units soon.

The captains of the three units were:

  1. Captain William H. Cousins: 28 August to 30 Nov 1814.
  2. Captain William Grigg: 29 August to 4 December 1814.
  3. Captain John J. Moore: 31 August to 30 Nov 1814.

The more that I study the men in these three units, the more I see neighbors, friends, and their families who married each other. My ancestors who served in the war did not file for pensions. So, I learned more about my ancestors by reading the pension records of other men in the unit. War of 1812 Pension records gave proof of marriage, with deposed witnesses stating they attended the wedding or other information they knew about the veteran. All three of the Mecklenburg militia groups guarded the Virginia waterways, particularly: the Potomac River, the Chesapeake Bay, and the waterways in Norfolk.

Captain John J. Moore led one of the militia groups from Mecklenburg, Virginia. Averett King’s pension record says the men in this group signed up in Lombardy Grove. The payroll heading says “Pay Roll of a company of Virginia Militia, commanded by Capt. John J. Moore, of the First Regiment, in the Service of the United States, from the 31st August to the 30th November 1814, both days inclusive, under the command of James Byrne, Colonel Commandant.”

Not all of the men in the unit show up on all the payroll lists. For example, my ancestor Newman Dortch served in Captain Moore’s company. Newman shows up on a payroll list, but another man who served in the company, Averett King, does not. Yet several other men on the payroll list at the Library of Virginia, witness that Averett was in their company. I have found more men on Fold3, and in land bounty records than on some of the original payroll lists from these Mecklenburg units. This information will gradually be added to the military section of this site, under genealogical resources.

Newman Dortch does not have a pension record, but he does have a military record at the National Archives. The pages below the map are his entire file. He was at Powell’s Creek, which is in Prince William County, Virginia, where Powell’s Creek and Potomac meet.

This record, in summary, is Newman Dortch granting his Captain power of attorney to collect pay for him. It states that Newman was a Quarter Master, that they were at Powell’s Creek and that he was living in Mecklenburg. Presley Hinton signed this record for the county. His title was covered up but could be a Justice of the Peace or a clerk.

For more information about Virginia and the War of 1812:

2 responses to “Mecklenburg, VA: War of 1812 Militia”

  1. William Grigg/Gregg lived and built a 1836 home (Colloquially known as the HC Taylor home) on Cleaton Road and was prominent member of Canaan Methodist Church.

    Buried at his home but no tombstone.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! That makes sense he lived there, since some of his men were also from Brunswick County as well. I love knowing where people lived and went to church. Also really helpful to know he was buried at his home, although not known where. I’ll this put on my map.


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