Person:Andrew Cowan (38)

Andrew Cowan
Facts and Events
Name Andrew Cowan
Gender Male
Birth? 1742
Death? April 1789 Old 96 District, South Carolina


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Duplicate to be merged with Person:Andrew Cowan (32)


Source:Cowan, 2012


Sullivan County Cowan Group
Settlement of South Carolina, c1762
Person:Andrew Cowan (32)


The following based on Source:Cowan, 2012, with some rearrangement and editing to meet the needs of WeRelate.

The exact line of Andrew Cowan is not known. John Kerr Fleming indicates incorrectly in his book “The Seven Cowan Brothers from County Down” that he was the son of James Cowan, one of the seven Cowan brothers that migrated to America in approximately 1725. My cousin, Scott Cowan, and I can trace our relationship to Andrew through wills and probated estates. Our DNA and the DNA of the descendants of James Cowan was conducted by Family Tree DNA. The results prove that James and Andrew were not related. Scott and I are 37 marker matches and do not match any Cowan line that has been tested. It is not known when Andrew arrived in America but he applied for a land grant from the Colonial Government on October 30, 1771. A plat from surveyor Alexander Turner stated that pursuant to a receipt on the 30th day of October 1771 from the Surveyor General, who at that time was John Bremar Esq., that he had measured and laid out unto Andrew Cowan a tract of land containing three hundred acres situate in Granville County in Boonsborough Township on the 23rd day of February 1772. On January 6, 1773 Lord Charles Granville Montague, the Governor and Commander in Chief of the Province of South Carolina, signed the Grant for King George III. It is not known why it took eleven months for the Grant to be approved after it was surveyed. The Grant stipulated that Andrew was to pay on the 25th day of March, in every year at the rate of three shillings sterling, or four shillings proclamation money, for every one hundred acres of his Grant. It also stipulated that he was to clear and cultivate three acres of land each year for each one hundred acres granted; and enter a minute or document of in the office of the Auditor General within six months (this was a plat from the surveyor and the name of the owners adjacent to the Grant and was called a Memorial). These stipulations would expire after ten years. A Memorial was drawn up by surveyor Alexander Turner that stated he had unto Andrew Cowan measured a tract of three hundred acres situated in Grayville County in Boonsborough Township on July 21, 1773. The Memorial stated that the tract was bounded on the S.E. by William Rose’s land and to the S.W. and N.W. by land laid out and N.E. by vacant land. Andrew was a patriot for the cause of American Independence and he and his son, John, fought against the British in the Revolutionary War. In December of 1785 Andrew wrote the following letter:
State of South Carolina

Please to deliver to John Lindsey the Indents [1] due to me for my service done to the publick & other losses as a soldier in the said service included in return made by Col. Robert Anderson to the Auditor Office. Given under my hand at Long Cane this (?) day of December 1785.
Witnessed by A.M Jones (JP)

From: Indents issued in payment of claims against South Carolina growing out of the Revolution. No. 226 Book K

Issued 10 Jan. 1785 to Mr. Andrew Cowen for Twenty eight pounds 8/6¾ Sterling for a Horse lost in the Militia Service in 1781, & for Militia duty – Capt. Norwoods pay bill on foot in 1781 & 1782 & accot. audited (No. 19). Principal pounds 28.8.6 ¾ - Interest pounds 1.19.2
Indents issued in payment of claims against South Carolina growing out of the Revolution. No. 226 Book K

It is not known the battles that Andrew fought in. Since he was with Colonel Anderson, we can follow Colonel Andersons’ career. Robert Anderson moved to S.C. from Virginia after he married in 1765. He joined the South Carolina 5th Militia in the Revolution. His friend was General Andrew Pickens. Robert Anderson was one of the patriots who gave the British their parole at Ninety Six, S.C. Many patriots took up arms after the British disregarded their promises. He was a Colonel under General Andrew Pickens at the battle of Cowpens. He fought in the battle of Eutaw Springs, near Charleston, S.C. (the British won). He was promoted to General in the State Militia and later fought at the battle of Kings Mountain, N.C. After the war he fought against the Indians.

The name of Capt. Norwood was also mentioned. The following was found in the book “Roster of South Carolina Patriots in the American Revolution” by Bobby Gilmer Moss (Source:Moss, 1990):

John Norwood: “Before the fall of Charleston, he served as a private in the Militia. He became a Captain in a ranger unit after the death of Capt. Andrew Miller in the battle at Cowpens and was wounded in a skirmish at Pratt’s Mill against William Cunningham and the Indians.

One of the last battles in the revolutionary war in upper S.C. was fought at Pratt’s Grist Mill on Little River near Due West. President Jimmy Carter’s ancestor, William Pratt, filed a revolutionary war claim that he was involved in the battle at Pratt’s Mill and lost a horse and saddle during the fight. Another veteran of the war, George Miller, testified in his claim that five hundred Indians and Tories under “Bloody Bill” Cunningham surprised thirty Patriots at the outpost at Pratt’s Mill in a night attack on October 30, 1781. The Patriots were led by Captain John Norwood who was injured in the attack. The patriots scattered and Captain Norwood was the only casualty. The Tories captured thirty horses and many weapons. After burning the Mill, the Tories and Indians burned an empty house about a mile away. The next house was George’s old Uncle, John Johnston. There they caught seven girls, four of them young women and three that were not grown. The Tories would not allow the Indians to kill them, but they stripped them naked and turned them loose. He stated that five of them came to his father’s naked and two of them “was driven the other course”. The Tories later used his father’s house as a station. George Miller stated that they set fire to the barns and the house with his Uncle John Johnston in it. [Reference Internet Nina Pratt Carter and click on Rootsweb worldconnect Project: History Research Cowan Pratt……. Need better sourcing

No direct proof that Andrew Cowan participated in the skirmish at Pratt’s Mill has been found, but since he served under Captain John Norwood in 1781 it is probable that he did. Andrew’s Colonial land-grant is just a few miles from Pratt’s Mill.

On January 21, 1785 Andrew bought 150 acres of land, and an additional 76 acres on June 5, 1786, from the State of South Carolina. He paid the State of South Carolina three pounds ten shillings sterling money for the 150 acre tract and one pound 15.45 for the 76 acre tract. [2]

Andrew wrote his will November 6, 1786 [3], shortly after these land acquisitions. Andrew left the plantation that he lived on with all the goods and chattels to his wife Ann and son John as long as they lived together, but stipulated that in case that either of them married or any separation came between them that his son John was to receive one hundred acres of land. He left approximately 100 acres each to his sons Isaac and William and approximately 100 acres of bounty land to be divided between Ann and his daughters Mary, Elizabeth, Ann and Lany. He left mares and colts to his son’s and directed that John and Isaac give to his daughter Mary a horse or a mare valued at ten pounds sterling out of their part. He directed that the schooling of all his children and the payments of his debts to be paid by his executors before the above goods and chattels were distributed. His will was probated on May 1, 1789.

Ann survived at least until 1810 when she was paid $120.00 for a loan out of her son William’s estate.

It is not known where Andrew and Ann are buried. In many cases people were buried on their property during this time period. Andrew left one hundred acres to his son Isaac who built a house on the property about 1790 which is called the “Pink” house in Due West, S.C. It is the oldest house in Due West. The house is owned today by the Kuykendall family, who was a professor at Erskine College. I was told by Mrs. Kuykendall that there was a slave cemetery on the property but that field stones were used as markers. Although no engraved headstone has been found, it is possible that Andrew, Ann and their son John are buried near this cemetery.


Intermediate Source:Genealogy Trails, transcribed Bruce Selvage.

original Source:Abbeville, SC, Will Book 1, 1787-1815.

Last Will & Testament of Andrew Cowan } November 6th 1786 In the Name of God Amen; I Andrew Cowen of Abbeville County Ninety Six District, being weak of body, but of a perfect memory, thanks be to God for his mercies; but considering the frailty of all flesh I Look upon it as my duty to dispose of such a State, as God has been pleased to Lend me for the better quitting my Concience: as in the manner following; -

  • First of all; I give my soul to god the giver; next my body to the earth to be decently buried, at the discretion of my Legateer - next all my debts to be paid, by my Executors hereafter named -
  • First of all I Leave & bequeath unto my beloved wife Ann Cowan and to my son John Cowan, the plantation I live on, with all the goods amd Chattels, to remain their real property as Long as they live, together: but in case that either of them Marry or any separation comes between comes between them, My son John is to have one hundred acres
  • likewise I Leave and bequeath to my son William one hundred acres of Land lying on the Nor west side of this plantation; that I now live upon;
  • and all the over plush [sic?] of Land that remains more than Williams of my three last surveys I Leave to my son John
  • Likewise I give and bequeath unto my son Isaac the hundred acres of Land that lyeth up the Creek on the Nor east side,
  • I leave and bequeath my old plantation of bounty Land to be equally divided between my beloved wife and my four daughters my daughter Mary, Elizabeth Ann and Leaney Cowan at the discretion of my guardians; again I Leave and bequeath the mares and Colts that my sons claims to be their unalterable property;
  • also it is my will that my son John and Isaac' shall give 'my daughter Mary a horse or a mare valued to ten Pounds Sterling out of their part, of their Land, the above goods and Chattles are to remain at the disposal of my executors or guardeens, to be divided at their discretion,
  • it is my Will also that the schooling of all my Children and the payment of all my debts comes of the whole: this I declare to be my Last Will and Testament - I appoint Ann Cown and John Cowan to be my sole executors like wise William Ross and William Mayn to be guardeens over them - Signed sealed in the presence of William Ross Rowley McMillan November 6th 1786 } Andrew Cowan L.S.

State of South Carolina Abbeville County Towit } In Open Court this seventh day of April one thousand seven hundred and eighty-nine, Personally came William Ross one of the Witnesses to the above Will and made Oath that he saw Andrew Cowan Deceased sign seal publish pronounce and declare the same to be his last Will and Testament and that he was then of sound and perfect mind memory and understanding to the best of the deponents Knowledge and belief and that Rowley McMillan together with this deponent did subscribe their names thereto as Witnesses in the presence of the Testator and at his request and in the presence of each other - Certified by order of Court the Day and Date above written John Bowie CC

Ann Cowan took the Oath of Executrix, and John Cowan the Oath of Executor of the above Will in Open Court of Abbieville County the Seventh Day of April Anno Domini 1789.

Identifies Wife: Ann [Hannah?] Sons: John, William, Isaac Daughters: Mary, Elizabeth, Ann, Leanney

  1. The term "Indents" refers to compensation for military duty and for other losses against England in the Revolutionary War. Once it was approved by the State of South Carolina, it sometimes took a long time for the claims to be paid. The veterans sometimes sold their claims for less than they were worth. Maybe that is why Andrew assigned his Indents to John Lindsey.
  2. I was advised by the Archives in Columbia that usually only the Continental forces received free land grants after the Revolution but the patriots who were in the Militia were able to buy land at a reduced price.<ref> <Ref name="Grants">See Boonesbrough Land Grants listed in Miller-Reid

    Families of Abbeville County; Book A page 94 and book B page 10 at the Abbeville Court House.</li>

    <li id="name">[[#_ref-name_0|↑]] Abbeville County Court house in Box 17, pack 354</li></ol></ref>