Facts and Events
Information on William McCall
"From 1739 to 1746 many members of the McCall family moved from Pennsylvania to New River settlement, Virginia. The idea of offering the dissenters from the Church of England inducements to settle the lands west of the Allegheny Mountains had often been suggested to prominent men in the Colony of Virginia, but no move in that direction had been taken until about the time of the first settlement of the lower valley, at and after which time the governor and council of Virginia permitted the erection of dissenting churches in the valley and encouraged the emigration of settlers wherever possible. The result of this action was a flood of settlers from Ireland and Scotland who came by way of Pennsylvania, mostly Scotch-Irish Presbyterians in belief. They passed into and settled the Valley, and in a few years the Valley from Harpers Ferry to New River was populated with a progressive and liberty-loving people. Numerous tracts of New River were occupied. Lands held by many of these settlers were known as 'cornrights,' that is under the law each settler acquired title to a hundred acres for every acre planted by him in corn."
About 1746 Francis McCall, William McCall, James McCall and Thomas McCall, all related, were heads of households in the New River settlement, now Botetourt County in southwestern Virginia. In 1749 the Indians, supported and compensated by the French army, made their first attack on the New River settlers. Virginia reacted by sending Lt. Col. George Washington and his militiamen supported by the South Carolina militia to counterattack. Constantly hounded by the guerilla tactics of the Indians and beset by the superior French regulars the militia had to entrench in hastily constructed Ft. Necessity on the Allegheny River, near the present site of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Besieged and cut off from the arrival of any support from the seaboard colonies Washington was forced to surrender his fort and his militiamen in 1754.
The McCalls and many of the Scotch-Irish fled southward into Mecklenburg [then Anson] County, North Carolina on the South Carolina border. There they resettled on Rocky River, Sugar Creek, in the Wachaw and on the Broad River in South Carolina. The only road in the area was an Indian trail through Mecklenburg from the Yadkin River to the Catawba Indian nation. The county had been named in honor of Princess Charlotte who had come about this time from Old Mecklenburg in Germany to England to be queen by marriage to George III.
Francis McCall, James McCall and Thomas McCall in 1758 served in the North Carolina militia, perhaps participating in the battle for Ft. Duquesne. Ironically the same men, less than 20 years later, would fight against their former comrades in the Revolutionary War. King George III appeared to fade from a benefactor into an oppressor.
Francis McCall and James McCall, two of the New River settlers, also served as Revolutionary soldiers from Mecklenburg County. After the Revolutionary War ended the younger McCalls extended the family across South Carolina and into Georgia. A generation later the McCall men spread into Tennessee, Alabama and Mississippi, frequently marrying Indian women from among the five civilized tribes.