Burgess Clark (1763-1851)
Abstract of Application for Pension and Bounty Land Warrant for
Revoluntionary War Service - (W2758 / BLWt 34972-160-55)
Burgess CLARK made application on Oct.12, 1832 and stated that he was 69 or 70 years old. He was living in Chatham County, N.C. in 1777 when his older brother, William CLARK, was drafted into a Company commanded by Lieutenant James HEARNE and Lieutenant _____ GRIFFITH. He [Burgess] wanted to go with his brother even though he was then only about 14 years old and not subject of the draft. So he became a subsitute for Morgan MINTER for a tour of three months. [If you had money enough and didn't want to serve in the army, you could pay someone else to subsitute for you.] Burgess stated that his papers [for his service?] were destroyed by fire when his house burnt more than 30 years before when he lived in York District, S.C. He served in a Regiment commanded by Colonel MAYBURN from Orange County, N.C. After he served his tour he returned home and then enlisted for a second tour from Chatham County, serving in the Company of Captain JOHNSON and the Regiment of Colonel COLLIER. He participated in a battle called "Gates Defeat". [Camden, South Carolina, where General GATES fled the battlefield and didn't stop until he got back to Virginia.]
Burgess CLARK stated that he was born in 1763 in Goochland County, Virginia and that his family Bible was taken by Tories when they plundered his father's house in Chatham Co., N.C. After the Revolution, he moved to Richmond Co., N.C. where on Oct. 14, 1799 he was married to Rhoda (Rhody) MORRIS by Curby SWINNEY, Esq. They moved back to Chatham Co., N.C., then to York District, S.C., to Lincoln Co., N.C. and finally to White County, Tennessee. He resided there for more than 30 years until his death on Oct. 22, 1851.
Those who testified as to their belief as to his service as a soldier in the Revolutionary War were: [part of page missing] (Wi)lliam KNOWLES, Esq., (S)amuel A. MOORE, Esq., (Th)omas ROBERTSON, Col. David A. (MIT)CHELL, Rev. Ozias DENTON, *Rev. Abel HUTSON, Henry (_____)TON, Joseph CLARK, Sr. [Son] & (Der)ius (?) CLARK, Sr. [Son] give information relating to the marriage of Burgess & Rhoda CLARK.
Rhoda CLARK, Widow, applied for a Bounty Land Warrant on the Act of March 3, 1855 (?). Bounty Land granted to Rhoda CLARK, 160 acres, but she had died, on June 27, 1856, before it was granted. Letter from J. P. ROSCOE, Sparta, dated June, 1859, relating to 160 acres. Mentions that no minor heirs were known, and that Samuel & Sally CLARK were the only heirs at law (incorrect) and they have removed from White County to Marcello Co. (?), Iowa since the death of their Mother.
This information was received by me several years ago from Mary Hudgens of Sparta, TN and is hand written and very dim. I have transcribed it as best I can. John B. McGowan 10/22/96
Burgess Clark's Story of his Survival in the Revolutionary War.
While serving in the Continental Army during the American Revolution, during one particular battle, Burgess suffered a serious head wound by a British sword which would end his fighting days. As there were no hospitals for treatment, injured soldiers were only administered basic first aid and then sent home. Often, a family member or neighbor assisted the injured man home and both men would be released from the army for the trip home. Such a neighbor agreed to help Burgess travel home, and the two departed on horseback.
Only two days into the long trip home, Burgess' companion decided that he no longer wished to provide assistance to him, thinking the sorely wounded Burgess would die in the night. The neighbor decided that should Burgess awaken the next morning, he would just leave him. Burgess did awaken only to find the man staring down at him. Cursing at him, he said, "You have opened your old eyes for the last time. I'm going to leave you, so you're on your own now." And with that he left, taking the horse with him. On his own now and his head wounds needing attention, he was able to get to his feet and start walking for home. He had not walked far before coming upon a footpath leading off to a farmhouse in the distance. He could see smoke coming from the chimney and knew someone was there. Starting down the footpath, he came to the farmhouse. The people living there took him right in and tended his wounds, feeding and clothing him as needed. The man of the house, a continental army officer himself, was interested in the circumstances of Burgess' situation. After hearing what had happened, he sat right down and wrote a letter back to the army to tell them of this occurance. Burgess stayed on with the family for a few days, resting , before he regained enough strength to continue on with his journey.
Not having any form of transportation, Burgess was grateful for the kindness of these people, and even more so when they offered him an old mule to help him on his journey. Burgess had not gone far before he met a group of soldiers heading in the opposite direction. He was surprised to find that the man who deserted him was now shackled and the soldiers were taking him back to the army. As was tradition, such an offence was punishable by the placing of the offender in the "hottest" battle action. Burgess never heard from his neighbor again.
Amos always remembered his grandfather's hair sticking out in all directions because Burgess could never get it to "part" correctly due to the scars of the head wounds he had suffered.
John B. McGowan 10/22/96