Person:John Alley (1)

John Alley
Facts and Events
Name John Alley
Gender Male
Image:Long Boone Cumberland--thin.jpg
Southwest Virginia Project
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Person talk:John Alley (1)



Based on: Source:Martin, 1983:37-40, 319-337

John was the son of James Alley and Asbury Christian [1], He was born in Henrico County VA in 1760. [2], dying in 1842 in Franklin Co. Indiana. He probably came to southwest Virginia about 1776, at age 16, at the same time that his elder brothers Thomas and James settled in the Copper Creek watershed.

John first appears in the records of Washington County in 1777 when, along with brother James, and a Samuel Alley (relationship unknown) in a militia roster at Moore's Fort, in Castle's Woods. [3] Source:Hamilton, 1968 reports him as serving as an Indian spy under Capt. James Gibson in the Rye Cove area [1]. He married Mary Porter, daughter of person:Patrick Porter (1) 29 April 1790 either at the David Gass log cabin (still standing in 1981) on the Quillen farm near Castlewoods, or at the home of James Osborne. Bishop Wheatcoat, a partner of Bishop Asbury, married them.[4]. John bought and sold numerous parcels of land along the Clinch.

The family moved to Franklin Co. IN about 1814. They sold their slaves before leaving VA, and came overland on horseback. One of the children died along the way. One of the Alley's slaves, Mills, had been given her freedom in January 1802;" But she loved the children dearly and could not bear to be left behind, catching up with the family on the way to Indiana. The family settled on Pipe Creek in Filmore Co. IN.


At first they lived in a sod hut until a log house could be built. Both were buried about five miles south of Metamora Ind. in the family cemetery.
Franklin County, IN
Franklin County, IN

A sister Fanny married a Napier (Napper), prior to the move to the Clinch, but was killed by Indians in an attack in the Fort Blackmore area in 1777. One of John's son's tells us about this in a letter to Lyman Drape in 1884:

My father's sister, Fanny Napper and her five (5) children were killed and scalped by Indians near Fort Blackmore. I was born in a few yards of the fort in 1801, and have just returned from a visit to my old birthplace. The ground where the fort stood was being cultivated. A large apple tree stands near the fort that my father set out. It is to this day called the "John Alley Apple Tree".
My aunt and family were killed, I think, in 1777. My father was born at Petersburg, VA, in 1760, and settled on Clinch when a young boy. Died on Piper Creek, Franklin Co., Indiana, in 1842,[6] where I now live, aged 82 years.


  1. 1.0 1.1 This is known only from tertiary sources; A primary or secondary source is needed to support this.
  2. Letter to Lyman Draper 1884.
  3. See "Moore's Fort Roster
  4. Marriage data needs to be sourced and verified.
  5. Apparently a typo. There is no "Filmore County" in Indiana. Probably "Franklin County" was meant.
  6. A John Alley, age 70-<80, with a same aged woman, is shown living in Franklin County, Indiana in the 1840 Census. A Samuel Alley, age 30-<40 is shown living near by. These data are consistent with the John Alley who settled on the Clinch c1776, and his son Samuel born 1801.