Waddell's Annals of Augusta County, Virginia, from 1726 to 1871


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long contemplated. He purchased a large tract of land on the Ohio, to which he proposed to invite chosen families who “might live retired, in abundance, in Christian intercourse, in the worship of God,” and rear religious and patriotic offspring. He embarked all his means in the enterprise, and removed his family to his land of Canaan in the wilderness. But he encountered one difficulty after another. People who he most wished to accompany him declined to emigrate, and he became involved in litigation. In the course of his business he traveled from the Ohio to Richmond on horseback, suffered much from exposure on the way, was taken sick, and died at the house of Colonel Gamble, in Richmond, June 8, 1799. He was buried in old St. John’s church yard.

 Mr. Graham had six children,—the eldest Jahab, became a Presbyterian preacher, and died early, in Staunton, at the house of his father-in-law, Mr. Peter Heiskell, leaving no child. The youngest of Mr. Graham’s children, William, became a physician, settled in Georgia and left a family. His daughters were Mrs. Murdock and Mrs. Braken, of Pennsylvania, and Mrs. Riel, of Kentucky.


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ALEXANDER NELSON

was born in Ireland, January 14, 1749. He came to America when a boy of probably ten years of age, and lived first in Philadelphia, where he was patronized by the celebrated Robert Morris, the financier of the Revolution.  From Philadelphia he came to Richmond, and there engaged extensively in merchandising. It is not known at what date he came to Augusta. Here his business was that of a farmer, owning and living on a large plantation on Lewis’ creek, six miles from Staunton. From the frequent mention of him in the county archives, it is evident that he was a prominent and influential citizen. He died January 2, 1834. His wife was a daughter of Sampson Mathews, of Staunton. Their children were: Dr. Thomas Nelson, of Richmond; John M Nelson, of Ohio; James Nelson, long one of the commissioners of the revenue for the county; Alexander Franklin Nelson, a highly respectable farmer; Lockhart Nelson, who died in Paris while a medical student there; Mrs. Mary Ann Bell, wife of Joseph Bell; and Mrs. Elizabeth Montgomery, wife of John Montgomery.


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JAMES LYLE,

the first clerk of the District Court at Staunton, was a member of the Rockbridge family of that name, and a brother of Capt. William Lyle, long a prominent citizen of Rockbridge. His wife was Margaret Baker, from the lower Valley, a cousin of Mrs. Judge Stuart, and aunt of Mrs. Judge L. P. Thompson. He died in 1793, and his wife survived him about forty years. The only child of Mr. and Mrs. Lyle was a daughter named Juliet, who became the wife of Abram Smith, of  Rockingham. The second wife of Robert S. Brooke, of Staunton, was a daughter of Abram and Juliet Smith.


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