m. est. 1762
- John Cowanabt 1763 -
Facts and Events
John Cowan was the son of person:Samuel Cowan (1) and person:Ann Walker (39). His father was killed by Indians in 1776 and his mother taken prisoner in a separate raid the next year. (See Indian Captivity Stories of the Cowan Family). John was a minor at the time, but eventually inherited the property of his father which lay adjacent to the property of his uncle Person:William Cowan (12) in Castles' Woods Virginia. After the Reolution he moved (briefly) to what is now Madison County KY. Here he settled ner his uncle William Cowan, and kinsman David Gass. Within a year or so he moved south to wht is now Blount County TN, again in the company of his Uncle William.
John married Agnes Martin on August 2, 1788 in what was then known as Greene County, NC, but was probably in the area that later became Blount County, TN. About 1806 he moved with other family members to Franklin County, TN. He served with the Tennessee Volunteer Mounted Gunmen, a militia unit, from 28 September 1814 to 27 March 1815 during the Creek Indian War.) The regimental history identifies him as a Captain under Major William Russell.  Governor John Sevier, mentions "Major John Cowan" in an 1804 letter (see Hill, Sarah H., March 2005); this may indicate a different John Cowan from the one who married Agnes Martin. In any case John Cowan of Franklin Tennessee is commonly known in his family line as "Major John Cowan". 
Major John Cowan is buried in Goshen Cemetery, near Cowan, TN, in Franklin County.
| || Entry||Source/Basis/Commentary
||Based on gravestone; John Cowan, son of Samuel Cowan and Ann Cowan of Castles Woods, came of age about 1781 when he begins to appear in his own right n the records of Russell County. Assuming that he was 18 in 1781 gives a DOB of 1763, agreeing with his gravestone.
||Most likely somewhere near Moon Creek, in modern Caswell County
||John is shown in court records of Russell County to be the eldest son of Samuel Cowan and Ann Walker. This implies that Samuel and Ann probably married c 1761; At that time her parents were in Orange County NC (area later became Caswell) and had been there since about 1756. Assuming she was living with her parents prior to her marriage to Samuel, that marriage almost certainly took place in what's now Caswell County, and that would be where John would have been born in 1763.
||22nd April 1837
||Based on gravestone, will was filed 3 May 1837
||Cowan, Franklin Co, TN
||based location of grave
||Goshen Cemetery, Cowan, Franklin Co TN
||Agness Martin (1763-1827)
||vita based on gravestone
||Aug 2 1788
|| Recorded in the Green County, Tennessee, Marriages, Roll 94, Page 38
||Greene Co NC
||Recorded in the Green County, Tennessee, Marriages, Roll 94, Page 38
||identified in sale of dower Rights
|| after 1827
||dates unverified, alternatives abound
"SALE OF ELIZABETH M. COWAN'S DOWER RIGHTS: Wm. M.
Cowan bought the dower rights of Elizabeth M. Cowan, widow of John Cowan,
for $220.00 on 15 May 1837. Witnessed by John Handley & Robt. Cowan.
(Deed Bk P, P 401) [Presumably a Franklin Co TN land transaction. John Handley is presumably the son of Samuel Handley (1751-1840) who married Nancy Cowan, daughter of Major John Cowan and Agness Martin.
- This major John Cowan is not to be confused with the Major John Cowan (?-c1779), who is commonly identified as having been killed on the Clinch River in an Indian raid between 1778 and 1780. (See Indian Captivity Stories.
- This John Cowan is also not to be confused with John Alexander Cowan (1775-1821) who married Rosannah Gillespy/Gillespie in Blount Co., TN on August 27, 1797 and who died October 12, 1821 in Dallas Co., AL. (Too many undocumented internet family trees have the two John Cowans confused and intermingled.)
- ↑ This article on the Creek War deals primarily with the "Tennessee Volunteer Mounted Gunmen'" and makes specific mention of Captain John Cowan, and Major William Russell.
- ↑ Not to be confused with the William Russell who led the militia in Castle's Woods during Dunmore's War.
- ↑ Governor John Sevier, mentions "Major John Cowan" in an 1804 letter (see Hill, Sarah H., March 2005); this may indicate a different John Cowan from the one who married Agnes Martin. In anycase, he is not to be confused with the Major John Cowan (?-c1779), and who is commonly identified as having been killed on the Clinch River in an Indian raid between 1778 and 1780 in which his wife Mary Walker is said to have been captured by Indians. That individual probably did not exist, represents a a complex confusion in the Cowan family history. This is discussed more completely in Indian Captivity Stories of the Cowan Family.