The Osborne and Robinette Families
Biography of Zachariah Robinette
Zachariah Robinette was the third child of Samuel H. Robinette and Anne (Osborne) Robinette. Zachariah married Elizabeth Fletcher (whose maiden name is believed to be Milan).
Family tradition holds that Zachariah Robinette was born in 1800 in Ashe County, North Carolina. The 1800 census for Ashe County lists a household headed by Samuel Robinette. His household included two males and one female under 10 years of age. It is probable that the youngest of the two male children was Zachariah.
In 1820 a family headed by Samuel Robinett was living in Scott County, Virginia. This family included two males in the 16 under 26 category. One of these is presumed to be Zachariah (from the 1820 census of Scott County, Virginia).
By 1830 Zachariah Robinette was listed by name as the head of a household existing in Scott County. He and his wife, Elizabeth Robinette, were carried in the 1830 census in the age category of 30 to 40 years.
Zachariah is not listed in the 1840 census of Scott County by reason of the fact that he died in that year, before the census was taken. There was in Scott County at the time a household headed by Elizabeth Robinette, listed in the 30 to 40 age category. Her household included one male and one female in the 10 under 15 years category (Sampson Page and Mary Polly); two females in the 5 under 10 years category (Rebecca and Lydia); and two males and one female in the under 5 years of age category (John, Ira P. and Elizabeth).
Volume I contained an account of the migrations of Samuel H. Robinette and his family. From this account, we can presume that Zachariah spent his very early childhood in Ashe County, North Carolina, Grayson and Scott County Virginia. Still a child, he would have accompanied his parents on their move to the Sequatchie Valley in Bledsoe County, Tennessee. Somewhere between the ages of 14 and 20 he would have accompanied the family on its move back to Scott County, Virginia and have lived there with his family until his marriage. Since his first child was born in 1823, he presumably married about 1820 or 1822.
Many descendants of Zachariah Robinette state that he married Elizabeth Fletcher. They lived and worked as farmers in Scott County, Virginia. Zachariah died in Scott County on March 2, 1840 and was buried in what was later to be known as the Sampson Sage Robinette Cemetery, named after one of Zachariah's sons.
On March 14, 1841, Elizabeth married Thomas Horton, son of Elijah and Catherine (Nelson) Horton. Thomas was born in 1795 in Faquier County, Virginia. Thomas and Elizabeth had one son, James N. Horton. Records of Scott County, Virginia show that Thomas Horton was the administrator of Zachariah Robinette's estate. One record, dated December 2, 1844, attests that Thomas Horton paid out of funds for the schooling of Zachariah Robinette's heirs during the years 1843 and 1844.
Elizabeth (Fletcher Robinette) Horton died July 5, 1858 in Scott County, Virginia. She was buried alongside Zachariah in the Sampson Sage Robinette Cemetery. After her death Thomas Horton married Lucinda Lewis, born circa 1818. She was a daughter of Garper and Elizabeth (Roller) Lewis. Thomas and Lucinda had one son, Philip Horton.
Sources: The 1800 census of Ashe County, North Carolina and the 1820, 1830 and 1840 censuses of Scott County, Virginia. Also, numerous descendants of Zachariah Robinette.
Death dates for Zachariah Robinette and Elizabeth (Fletcher) Robinette were supplied by several descendants of Zachariah and Elizabeth; these descendants stated that the information came from family Bibles, tombstones and church records.
Information about Elizabeth's marriage to Thomas Horton and related information was provided by Mr. Eddie Walker, then of Box 7096, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, Tennessee 37601.
The date of Elizabeth's death also appears in the death records of Scott County, Virginia.
Additional information about Zachariah and Elizabeth Robinette was provided by Mrs. Julia Haggard, Box 57, Rte. 2, Attalla, Alabama 35954.; Mr. Isaac Taylor Robinette of Big Stone
Gap, Virginia 24219; Mrs. J. C. Cooper, 405 Boggs Ave., Appalachia, Virginia 24216; Mrs. Rosa Poteet, Rte. 4, Jonesville, Virginia 24263; and June Fannon of Duffield, Virginia.
Zachariah and Elizabeth (Fletcher) Robinette had eight children, listed below:
1. Jesse Wesley Robinette, born November 23, 1823. Married Elizabeth McClure.
2. Sampson Sage Robinette (sometimes spelled Samson), born March 24, 1826. Married (1) Mary Ann Neal and (2) Micca Jennings.
3. Mary Robinette, born August 27, 1829. Married Epperson G. Anderson.
4. Rebecca Robinette, born circa 1831. Married Elias Roller.
5. Lydia Robinette, born circa 1832. Married Alexander Riley.
6. Elizabeth Robinette, born circa 1834. Married (1) Neale and (2) Horne.
7. John Robinette, named after John the Baptist who, it will be recalled, also had parents named Zachariah and Elizabeth. John died at an early age. We are not certain just where he ranked in the order of birth of the children of Zachariah and Elizabeth.
8. Ira Pendleton Robinette, born November 19, 1835 Married (1) Margaret Malinda Taylor, (2) Florence Josephine (Bevins) Berry and (3) Matilda Vaughn. Ira also had several common-law-wives.
Although we have very little information about Mary, Rebecca, Lydia and Elizabeth, we have assigned parts of this study to them with the idea that these parts can perhaps be filled in if and when information about them and their descendants becomes available. Most of this volume is devoted to Jesse Wesley Robinett, Sampson Sage Robinette and Ira Pendleton Robinette.
Notes on the text: Most of the information in this volume was collected during the period 1968-1975. It has been impracticable to update it, since this would have involved the writing of many hundreds of additional letters, many of which would not have been answered. The fact that the material was not updated means:
-- That the list of families is not complete, i.e., many children have been born since the material originally was compiled.
-- That many persons listed as unmarried children have since married and many of them have children of their own.
-- That some persons listed herein as living have died between the date of compilation and the date of publication.
-- That some person listed as married may have, in the interim have been divorced.
I have endeavored to identify all of the descendants of Zachariah Robinette and Elizabeth (Fletcher) Robinette. In this I have not succeeded, for the follow reasons:
-- Some families "went West" and evidently were never heard of again.
-- Some persons to whom letters of inquiry were addressed did nor bother to reply.
-- Many county records were lost, especially during the period of the Civil War.
I have tried to report with absolute accuracy the information I received. But I have to recognize that this study may contain some errors, due to the following considerations:
-- Census reports, inscriptions on tombstones and entries in family Bibles are not invariably accurate.
-- Some respondents to my letters relied upon their memories as to dates of birth, dates of
marriage and dates of death, instead of upon certificates of these three.
James, Jonathan and Ephraim Osborne
A number of descendants of Captain Enoch Osborne have filed with various genealogical societies a series of Family Group Sheets or charts which purport to identify the father, grandfather and great grandfather of Enoch. These descendants generally cite as their source a Mr. Will Daniel, who was an attorney-at-law in Huntington, West Virginia. Mr. Daniel is reported to have employed a professional genealogist to establish the ancestry of Enoch.
The present writer has engaged in a fairly arduous effort, over the years, to identify and locate the raw research files utilized by Mr. Daniel in his conclusions. This search has been totally unavailing.
Since nothing is known to contemporary Osborne family researchers as to just how Mr. Daniel arrived at his findings, they state that these findings cannot be accepted as valid. The present writer neither accepts nor rejects these findings; but a respect for historical accuracy dictates the attitude that, lacking access to the original research conducted by Mr. Daniel and/or his hired researcher, no supportable conclusion can be reached as to their validity. Nonetheless, since these findings have been placed in the public record by descendants of Enoch Osborne, the present writer has decided to provide a summary.
Several Family Group Sheets identified as the great-grandfather of Enoch Osborne, a James Osborne, said to have been born about 1671 in Warwick, Warwickshire, England. James is said to have married Anne Carter of Warwickshire, who was born about 1675 in Warwickshire. One child is listed, a Jonathan Osborne, born on March 27, 1697 in Warwickshire. These charts invariably list Mr. Daniel as the source.
Another series of Family Group Sheets state that the son of James and Anne (Carter) Osborne, Jonathan Osborne, emigrated from England to the Colony of Virginia about 1720, and in 1722 married Gretta Hollman of Williamsburg, James City County, Virginia. Gretta is said to have been born about 1701 and to have died in Montgomery County, Virginia in 1796. The children of Jonathan and Gretta, all said to have been born near Williamsburg, James City County, Virginia are listed as:
1. Ephraim Osborne, born August 21, 1723. Married Elizabeth Howard. Died in 1796 in Montgomery County, Virginia.
2. Soloman Osborne, born about 1725.
3. Jeremiah Osborne, born about 1727.
4. Josiah Osborne, born about 1729.
5. Johannah Osborne, born about 1731.
Again, Mr. Daniel is cited as the sole source of this data.
A third series of Family Group Sheets states the Elizabeth Howard, identified as the wife of Ephraim Osborne, was born about 1723. The children of Elizabeth and Ephraim are listed
1. Captain Enoch Osborne of Grayson County, Virginia. Born about 1745. Married Jane Hash, estate settled on October 17, 1826.
2. Stephen Osborne of Scott County, Virginia. Born about 1738. Married Comfort Langreene, will dated July 1, 1817.
3. Zachariah Osborne of Grayson County, Virginia. Born about 1738. Married Jincy Burton.
4. Ephraim Osborne of Grayson County, Virginia. Born about 1752. Married Polly or Mary, last name unknown. Died November 9, 1852 at the age of 100.
5. Jonathan Osborn of Rowan and Ashe Counties, North Carolina. Born on September 15, 1753. Married (1) Mary, last name unknown, (2) Agnes Wells. He died April 11, 1834 in Ashe County, North Carolina.
6. Robert Osborne of Grayson County, Virginia, born circa 1758, married Anne, last name unknown.
7. Solomon Osborne of Pulaski and Scott Counties, Virginia, born circa 1760, married Miss Livingston, died circa 1776.
8. John Osborne of Pulaski and Scott Counties, Virginia, born circa 1761.
9. Cornelius Osborne of Pulaski and Scott Counties, Virginia, born circa 1765, died in 1834.
The charts listing Ephraim and Elizabeth (Howard) Osborne and the nine children list the following sources: Will Daniel of Huntington, West Virginia; "Harlan County, Kentucky Deaths", by Burns; "Index to Revolutionary War Records", by Burns; and "Harlin County, Kentucky Deeds", by Burns.
Some of this information about Ephraim Osborne and his descendants is verifiable from
other sources, as will be noted below.
The present writer has been unable to located and additional information about James and Jonathan Osborne, or even to establish that they, in fact, existed. There is no question, however, that Ephraim Osborne did exist, although it has not been demonstrated that he was a son of Jonathan Osborne. The present writer has concluded that it is more than reasonably certain that
Ephraim Osborne was the father of Captain Enoch Osborne. The following biography of Ephraim
has been prepared utilizing three major sources, listed below:
1. The Family Group Sheets, mentioned above.
2. A study by Carol (Osborne) Hackett and Myrtle (Greer) Johnson, published in June 1961 in Bel Air, Maryland under the title "Winston Osborne-His Ancestors and Descendants".
3. A study by Mrs. Rita Sutton of Norton, Virginia, published by the Southwest Virginia
Historical Society under the title "Osbornes and Alleys".
The Family Group Sheets lists the birth date of Ephraim Osborne, Sr. as 21 Aug. 1723 and his birthplace as Williamsburg, James City County, Virginia. Hackett-Johnson and Sutton list no birth date or birthplace for him, although Sutton believes he probably came to Rowan County, North Carolina from New Jersey. A Charles V. Osborne now conducting intensive Osborne research in New Jersey is convinced that Ephraim emigrated from New Jersey to North Carolina.
Sutton states the Ephraim Osborne, Sr. was in Rowan County, North Carolina as early as 1753. The name, Ephraim Osborne, appears on the 1759 tax list for Rowan County. A pension application filed by Jonathan Osborne states that the family lived in Rowan County. A tax list dated 1761 appears to show that in that year Ephraim was in "The Hollow" of Surry County, North Carolina. Jonathan Osborne, in his pension application, stated that the family moved from the "Forks of the Yadkin" to "The Hollow" of Surry County, North Carolina.
Sutton states that Ephraim was in Fincastle County (which then must have been Augusta County), by 1766. In 1772 he appeared on William Herbert's tax list in Fincastle County. Hackett-Johnson and Sutton record that he obtained 260 acres of land from the Loyal Land Company, located on both sides of Saddle Creek, a tributary of the New River, in 1774. Sutton adds that Osborne's Fort was built on this parcel of land.
Hackett-Johnson and Sutton state that in 1777, Ephraim Osborne, Sr. took the Oath of Fidelity when he joined a company of the Virginia militia captained by Enoch Osborne. Ephraim Ozburn, Sr., appears in the 1777 list and the 1781 list of members of Enoch's company. On the 1781 list he bears the rank of Lieut., and is declared "not fit".
Sutton states that in 1779 Ephraim Osborne was paid for patrolling presumably against
Indians and Tories. On March 4, 1776 he appeared on the revenue tax list of Montgomery,
Virginia. On October 28, 1789 he was living in the same area, with property on both sides of
Saddle Creek. On April 23, 1794 he was given an exemption from the Montgomery County tax;
such exemptions were commonly given to the aged and the infirm.
Captain Enoch Osborne and Jane (Hash) Osborne
One of the primary sources of information for all genealogists who are interested in
Captain Enoch Osborne and his descendants is a pension application filed by Jonathan Osborne, a
brother to Enoch. This application was filed on November 12, 1832 and sworn before Thomas
Calloway, Clerk of the Court of Pleas, Ashe County, North Carolina. The record, obtained by M.
L. Osborne from the National Archives in Washington, D. C., reads as follows:
"Declaration in Order to Obtain the Benefit of Act of June 7, 1832. State of N.C., County of Ash. On 12th Day of Nov. 1832, there personally appeared before me in open court of Pleas,
Jonathan Osborn, age 80 years Feb. 13 (no written record), a resident of Ash Co., N.C., who being duty sworn according to Law, doth on his oath make the following declaration in order to
obtain the benefit of Act of Congress June 7, 1832. He entered the service of the U.S. under the following officers and served as herewith stated. Living in Montgomery County, Va. in the same
year that Independence was declared. When the Cherokee Indians broke out his brother, Capt. Enoch Osborn, was Captain of the Militia and he received order for draft. He was stationed for 3
months at a fort on New River. Thence he marched to meet the force of Christie and Major Shelby at the Long Island of Holston, N.C. The militia was then commanded be Col. Williams and Major Winston. Marched further into the Indian territory for 3 months, later returned, he having been engaged for 6 months. No discharge in writing. Afterwards he served in many expeditions against the Tories. He was born in the forks of the Yadkin River in Rowan Co., N.C. Removed to the Hollow of Surry, N.C. in his youth. After a few years with his father and family moved to Montgomery Co., Va, where he lived for 63 years on one place. Until 3 years since he moved to Ash Co, N.C. I, Jonathan, refer to my neighbors, Rev. James Plummer, Will Blevins and Joshua Cox as to my character." (All of these signed the affidavit). The application was signed by Thomas Calloway.
Other primary sources for genealogists studying the biography of Captain Enoch Osborne
--The history and genealogy prepared by Carol (Osborne) Hackett and Myrtle (Greer) Johnson, under the title "Wiley Winton Osborne-His Ancestors and Descendants", printed in Bel Air, Maryland in June 1961.
--The genealogical study prepared by Rita Sutton under the title "Early Osbornes and Alleys", published by the Historical Society of Southwest Virginia, Wise, Virginia in 1973.
--A history of Grayson County, Virginia, written by B. F. Nuckolls of Galax, Virginia. "Pioneer Settlers of Grayson County, Virginia", printed in 1914 by the King Printing Company of Bristol, Tennessee.
--A book by A. B. Cox, printed under the title "Footprints on the Sands of Time".
--A series of Pedigree Charts, filed by a number of descendants of Captain Enoch Osborne with various genealogical societies. These charts, from several persons, are substantially identical, testifying to the fact that the authors, for the most part, utilized identical sources of information.
--Records filed at the seats of government (county seats) of the counties in which Captain
Enoch Osborne lived; and records in the Virginia State Historical Library at Richmond.
From these records and other sources, the present author has endeavored to develop a
chronological record of the life of Captain Enoch Osborne:
1745- Evidently no document recording the birthplace and birth date of Enoch Osborne had been
found. Authors of the Pedigree Charts state that he was born about 1745, or about 1750, or
during the period 1745-50. Hackett-Johnson believe it likely he was born in 1750. All sources
agree that he was born in Rowan County, North Carolina.
We know that Enoch's brother, Jonathan, was born in Rowan County, North Carolina. An
Ephraim Osborne, who almost certainly was the father of Enoch and Jonathan, was in Rowan
County as early as 1753 and may have been there several years earlier. Tax records show that
Ephraim was still in Rowan County, living in the forks of Yadkin River, in 1759, but that by 1761
he was living in that part of Rowan County, which later became a part of Surry County, North
Carolina, known as "The Hollow". Jonathan Osborne, in his pension affidavit, stated that he
removed from the forks of the Yadkin to "the Hollow of Surry" in his youth. We can presume, but
cannot prove, that the date of Jonathan's move was about 1761, and that this was a family move
of which Enoch was a part.
Mid 1760 - Jonathan Osborne in his pension affidavit stated that after a few years at "the Hollow
of Surry" he, with his father and family, moved to Montgomery County, Virginia. The precise
date of this move is not known, but some evidence as to the general date may be inferred from
testimony given by Enoch Osborne in 1809 in a case tried in the Grayson County Court,
involving a Mr. Newell and John Cox. In this case Newell was contesting the right of John Cox to
some land located in the Peach Bottom (evidently the valley of Peach Creek, a tributary of New
River). In the court Enoch deposed that "Captain John Cox settled on the Peach Bottom 44 or 45
years ago." In the record Enoch was described as an "old settler" and evidently was speaking
from personal knowledge and experience. The clear indication is that Enoch was living in the New
River area of present Grayson County, Virginia as early as 1765 or 1766.
Mid 1760 - This case is recorded in Chalkey's Abstracts, 20143. B. F. Nuckolls states in his
history: "Esquire Enoch Osborne settled on New River, near Bridle Creek; this for many years
was known as the Osborne settlement. Enoch Osborne had three brothers, Solomon, Ephraim and
Jonathan, who came to this country with their families about the same time and settled on New
River, near together. A fort was built on the farm now occupied by Joshua Osborne and son,
John, at Ancella Post Office. Indian depredations were common on the border settlements, and
preparations for protection and defense were necessary. It was fortunate that the first settlers
were people of moral worth and piety."
Hackett and Johnson quote Mr. Wade Eller, an historian of present Ashe County, North
Carolina, to the effect that the Osbornes were one of the first families to settle on the New River,
Mr. Eller stated that there were only three other families in the particular area where the Osbornes
Before proceeding further it would be well to note that there were fairly frequent changes in the names of the counties which figure in this story. Rowan County, North Carolina, in which the Osborne family lived, was created in 1753 from Anson County, North Carolina. Surry County, the location of "The Hollow", was created in 1770 from a portion of Rowan County. Ashe County, North Carolina was created in 1799 from Wilkes County and Wilkes County in 1777 from portions of Surry and Burke Counties. Alleghany County, North Carolina, in which some members of the Osborne family subsequently lived, was created in 1850 from a portion of Ashe County.
The land on which Enoch Osborne settled in present Grayson County, Virginia, was, at the time Enoch settled there, a part of Augusta County, Virginia, which was created in 1738-45
from Orange County, Virginia. In 1772 the New River area where Enoch lived became part of
Fincastle County. In 1776-77 it became a part of Montgomery, created from Fincastle and
Botetourt Counties. In 1789-90, Wythe County was created from a portion of Montgomery
County, and in 1792-93 the present Grayson County was created from Wythe and Patrick
Counties. Thus, Enoch Osborne, without moving, lived successively in Augusta, Fincastle,
Montgomery, Wythe and Grayson Counties of Virginia.
Mid 1760 - Nuckolls relates this story about the Osborne family 1760 during its early days in
Virginia: "An incident occurred with the Osborne brothers in their newly occupied territory that
tells of the dangers and exposures to which pioneer settlers were subjected. Enoch Osborne and
brothers, Solomon and Ephraim went into what is now Wautauga, North Carolina on a hunting
trip, deer being plentiful in that section. Getting wet by a shower of rain, and wet bushes, they
struck up camp in the evening and lay down to sleep and rest, hanging up their clothes by the
camp fire to dry. The Indians surprised them by shooting into the camp and killing Solomon
Osborne; an Indian chased Enoch some distance, and lost him in the dark. Ephraim, after fleeing
from camp, carefully crept back to his horse that was fastened with a hickory bark halter to a tree,
loosed him and rode home. Enoch returned home without shoes and in his night clothing." These
facts were gathered from Mrs. Mary McMullen, wife of Hon. Lafayette McMullen, member of
Congress from Scott County, Virginia for several sessions. Mrs. McMullen, before her marriage,
was Miss Mary Woods, step-granddaughter of Solomon Osborne who was killed by the Indians.
Soloman's widow remarried Jonathan Wood.
1768-1769 All sources agree that Enoch Osborne married Jane Hash, daughter of John Hash.
Some of the Pedigree Charts list Rebecca (Anderson) Hash as Jane's mother. Nuckolls states:
"Enoch Osborne's wife was a Miss Hash. He and his wife were Christians and added very much in
planting the standard of Christian civilization over the land that was so recently inhabited by
savages." Nuckolls adds, "The Hash family came from Rowan County, N.C. about the same time
that Enoch Osborne, Benjamin Phipps and Isaiah Phipps came and settled on the New River.
Enoch Osborne married a Miss Hash...There are quite a number of citizens of this Hash family
living in the west end of Grayson County, and they were men and women of prominence in the
early settlement of the county..."
We have no record of the marriage of Enoch and Jane, but evidently their first child was born
around 1770, so we may assume that the marriage took place about 1768 or 1769. Enoch and
Jane settled on Enoch's farm on the New River just north of the Virginia line with North Carolina,
and lived their until Enoch's death about 49 years later. All of their children (11 or 12), were born
on the New River farm, now called the Old Fort Farm.
1770 The first child of Enoch and Jane, Ruth, was born in or about 1770.
1772 Hannah, the second child of Enoch and Jane, was born in or about 1772.
1772 The name of Enoch Osborn appeared on William Herbert's "List of Tithables" for Fincastle
1774 The third child of Enoch and Jane, Enoch Osborne, Jr., was born on December 22, 1774.
1776 The forth child of Enoch and Jane Osborne, Mary Polly, was born at about this time.
1776 At a meeting of the Fincastle County Committee of Safety held at New Dublin on April 4,
1776, several lieutenants of the militia including Enoch Osborne, were commissioned. Then the
committee decided to form another company of militia from a part of a company commanded by
Captain Coxe, and Enoch was sworn in as captain of the new company. "Virginia State Library
Publication #1", page 85 and 87 and a book of Revolutionary War records found in Montgomery
County, Virginia by Hackett and Johnson. Enoch's militia company appears to have been made
up, in good part, of his relatives, friends and neighbors. Just how much action this company
experienced is not recorded in detail. We learned from Jonathan Osborne's pension application
that this company fought against the Indians and Tories. John Osborn, a nephew of Enoch's who
was in Enoch's company, stated in his pension application that he fought under Colonels
Campbell, Cleveland and Preston. Various records show that all three of these colonels, with the
militia under their command, took part in the Battle of King's Mountain. It appears likely that
Enoch's company of militia belonged to a larger organization commanded by one of these
officers. Mr. Wade Eller, an historian and genealogist of Ashe County, North Carolina, believes
that Enoch and his men undoubtedly were at the Battle of Guilford Courthouse in North Carolina.
1777 Hackett and Johnson found in the Montgomery County, Virginia Courthouse a record of
those members of Enoch Osborne's militia company who took the Oath of Fidelity to the
Commanwealth of Virginia which, at that time. was required of all members of the militia. This
oath was considered necessary because of the continued presence of persons who remained loyal
to the English throne. Among those listed were Captain Ozburn, Jeremiah Ozburn, Stephen
Ozburn, Sr., Stephen Ozburn, Jr., Jonathan Ozburn, Ephraim Ozburn, Sr., Ephraim Ozburn, Jr.,
and Robert Ozburn, Sr. (who initially refused to take the oath but did take it later).
The sixth child of Enoch and Jane, Jane Osborne, was born on August 18, 1777.
1778 The seventh child of Enoch and Jane, Abigail, was born on February 17, 1778.
1779 In this year Enoch Osborne was recommended to the Governor of Virginia as "a proper
person to be added to the Commission of the peace for this County." ("Montgomery County,
Virginia Court Order Book", dated November 3, 1779).
1780 The Battle of King's Mountain occurred in this year.
1780 The eighth child of Enoch and Jane, Rebecca, was born at about this time.
1780 An interesting event involving Captain Enoch Osborne is recounted by A. B. Cox in his
"Footprints On the Sands of Time". In 1780 the English general, Cornwallis, had sent Major
Patrick Ferguson into western North Carolina to forage for supplies and to round up recruits
among the Loyalists there. The local patriots were incensed. Colonel Ben Cleveland sent a letter
by messenger, Martin Gambill, asking Colonel William Campbell of Washington County,
Virginia, to come with help. Martin Gambill went to Enoch Osborne's place on the New River to
borrow a horse. Enoch, who was plowing at the time, took the harness off his horse and loaned it
to Gambill to ride to Washington County.
1781 The Battle of Guilford Courthouse, in which Captain Enoch Osborne's militia company
probably participated, occurred in March of 1781.
The ninth child of Enoch and Jane, Zachariah, was born on July 15, 1781.
In pursuance of an Act of the Virginia Assembly, Captain Enoch Osborne submitted a list
(roster), of his militia company. On the roster, among others, were Enoch Ozburn, Captain;
Ephraim Ozburn, Lieut.; Robert Ozburn; Jeremiah Ozburn; John Ozburn; Ephraim Ozburn; and
1782 Enoch Osburne proved to the Montgomery County Court that he had furnished supplies for
the use of the militia company of Washington County, on that company's return from King's
Mountain. He also had furnished "diets" and "forrage" for Captain Morgan's company of North
Carolina. ("Montgomery County, Virginia, County Court Records" of May 7, 1782).
1783 The tenth child of Enoch and Jane, Sarah, was born about this time.
1785 The eleventh child of Enoch and Jane, Phebe, was born on December 12, 1785.
1786 Some Pedigree Charts show a twelth child of Enoch and Jane, named Lydia, who evidently
was born at about this time.
1787 On April 4th of this year, Enoch Osborn resigned his position as captain of Militia,
succeeded by James Anderson (Montgomery County, Virginia Order Book I, p. 303).
1787 Enoch Ozburn took the oaths of a citizen, of the County Court of Chancery, and of Oyer
and Terminer (Lewis Preston Summers, "Annals of Southwest Virginia").
1788 Enoch Osborn was present at a meeting of the Montgomery County, Virginia Court, held
on the 2nd day of September ("Montgomery County, Virginia Court Order Book for 1788-
1790 Wythe County, Virginia was created from a portion of Montgomery County, Virginia. On
December 10th, Enoch Osborn became a Justice of the Peace for the new county ("Wythe
County, Virginia Order Book Number I").
1792 During this year Enoch Osborne was visted by Bishop Asbury, the first Methodist bishop in
what became the United States. A short account of this visit is carried in the Bishop's journal:
"1792, Virginia, Thursday, 23. We made an early start for friend Osborne's on New River,
fifteen miles distant; here we were generously entertained. After talking and praying together, we
were guided across the River, for which I was thankful..."
1792 Grayson County, Virginia was created from lands formerly belonging to Wythe and Patrick
Counties, and Enoch Osborne took an oath of office as Justice of the Peace for the new County
("Grayson County, Virginia Order Book Number I" and the "Calendar of Virginia State Papers",
Volume VI, page 183).
1809 In March of this year Enoch Osborn resigned from his office as Justice of the Peace of
Grayson County, Virginia ("Grayson County Minute Book" for the period 1806-1811).
1818 Enoch died and was buried in the family cemetery on his farm on the New River, now
called the Old Fort Farm, in what is now Grayson County, Virginia. His tombstone remained in
this cemetery until 1973. When M. L. Osborne visited the Old Fort Farm in 1973, he learned that
a power company planned to build a dam on the New River below Enoch's farm; the resulting
lake would have covered much of the farm, including the graveyard where Enoch and several
members of his family were buried. At this time of M. L. Osborne's visit, the Independence
Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution had removed Enoch's tombstone, with the
intention of placing it in the nearby Cox's Chapel Cemetery. The SAR had discussed trying to
remove Enoch's remains but decided against this as impracticable, considering the long period
since the burial. Throughout 1973 to 1976 there was a strong effort by ecologists and
conservationists to block construction of the dam; in 1976 this effort was successful. We have
heard, but have not verified, that Enoch's tombstone was returned to its original place in the old
On November 24, 1818 an inventory of Captain Enoch Osborne's estate was conducted.
On November 25, 1818 a sale of some of Captain Enoch Osborne's property was held
(Record of the sale is carried in the "Grayson County, Virginia Will Book I", pp. 179-181).
During this year Enoch Osborne's heirs were named ("Grayson County, Virginia Deed Book
4", p. 109, 26 Nov. 1818).
Letters of administration for Captain Enoch Osborne's estate were granted to Enoch Osborn
(son of Enoch, Sr.), and Zachariah Osborn, another of Enoch's sons ("Grayson County, Virginia
Order Book", 1811-1819, p. 338).
1819 Jane (Hash) Osborne may have married Harden Cox in Grayson County, Virginia on
October 5, 1819.
1822 Jane (Hash) Osborne may have died this year. We have no record of the precise date of her
On April 12th of this year, there was a second sale of Enoch's property ("Grayson County,
Virginia Will Book I," pp. 325-326).
1826 On October 17th of this year, Enoch's estate finally was settled.
According to Hackett and Johnson, "Enoch seems to have acquired an extensive amount of land. In 1814 he owned tracts of 100 acres, 140 acres, 260 acres, 211 acres and 197 acres in Grayson County. In additions he had several grants of land in North Carolina. These grants were obtained at various times and were in scattered tracts, but the total amount was 2,875 acres. The original copy of one grant issued in 1795 for 1,300 acres is owned by a descendant, Walter Osborne of Sparta, North Carolina." Mr. Wade Eller says that Enoch, his brothers and sons at one time owned nearly all of the land between Bridle and Saddle Creeks in Virginia and one-third of all that is now Alleghany County, North Carolina.
Some additional information, gleaned from various sources, adds to the story of Captain Enoch Osborne:
Enoch Osborn was a witness to the Last Will and Testament of John Hash in 1784 ("Montgomery County, Virginia Deeds and Wills", 1773-1797, pp. 63-64).
Enoch Osborn, Sr., appears on the Grayson County, Virginia Tax list of 1810, which for his household lists 1 white tithable, 2 slaves over 12 years of age, and 11 horses.
B. F. Nuckolls of Allax, Virginia, in his "Pioneer Settlers of Grayson County, Virginia", provides considerable information about the marriages of Enoch Osborne's children and about the Hash family into which Enoch married.
The visitor to the area in which Captain Enoch Osborne lived, a few miles out of the county seat of Grayson County, Independence, is struck with the frequency with which the name Osborne appears on signs, mailboxes and buildings. In the county seat is an Osborne Motel, operated by one of Captain Enoch's descendants. The motel proprietor said that many of Enoch's descendants still live in Grayson County. Also quite prevalent is the name Cox, a family closely connected with Captain Enoch's family through marriage.
All of the children of Enoch and Jane Osborne were born at the Old Fort Farm on New
River near Independence, Grayson County, Virginia. The present authors have found three lists of
these Children: (1) in the Hackett-Johnson study; (2) the Rita Sutton study; and (3) the Pedigree
Charts filed with various genealogical societies. Although there is substantial agreement
among these three sources as to the names of Enoch Osborne's children, there are some
differences in birthdates and some other data. The similarities and differences are shown in the
The present writer has not endeavored to identify the descendants of all of the children of Enoch
and Jane (hash) Osborne. My concentration has been on the two from whom I was directly
b. 12 or 26 Dec., 1770. m b. 26 Dec. 1770, m.
b. 26 Dec. 1770, m. Joshua
b. about 1772, m. Charles b. ca. 1765, m. Charles
b. abt. 1769, m. Charles
3. Enoch Jr.
b. 22 Dec. 1774, m. abt.
b. 22 Dec. 1774, m. ca. b. 22 Dec. 1774, m Polly or
4. Mary Polly
b. abt. 1775, m. George
b. ca. 1764, m. George b. abt. 1767, m. George
b. abt. 1776 m. Samuel
b. 1773 m. Samuel H. b. 1765 m. Samuel
b. 18 Aug. 1777 m. (1) abt. b. 18 Aug. 1777 m. (1)
b. 18 Aug. 1777 m. George
b. 26 Feb. 1778 m. John Goss, m. John Goss.
b. abt. 1776 m. John Goss.
b. abt. 1780, m. Samuel Cox, b. 1780 m. Samuel Cox,
b. abt. 1774. m. Samuel Cox.
9. Zechariah b. 15 Jul. 1781. m. abt 1803
b. 15 Jul. 1781. m. ca. b. abt 1784. m. Charity
b. abt. 1783. m. Moses Dixon. b. ca. 1783. m. Moses
b. abt 1780. m. Moses Dixon.
b. 12 Dec 1785. m. John b. 12 Dec. 1785. m. John
b. abt 1778. m. John
m. Alexander Cox. b. abt. m. Alexander Cox
The Osborne Family Chart
James Osborne, born circa 1671, Warwick, Warwickshire
Robinette Family Chart
Allen Robinette (Allyn Robanett), died 1694 inPennsylvania (now Delaware). Married September 1653 in London, England, Margarett Syme and came to America in 1682.