Person:William Edmiston (5)

Col. William Edmondson
b.27 October 1736 Cecil County, Maryland
m. 1730
  1. Col. William Edmondson1736 - 1822
  2. Samuel Edmiston1738 - 1808
  3. Lt. Robert Edmiston, Sr.AFT 1739 - 1780
  4. John EdmistonAFT 1741 - Bet 1815 - 1816
  5. Mary EdmistonAFT 1742 -
  6. Elizabeth EdmistonAFT 1743 -
  7. Andrew Edmiston1750 - 1780
m. 19 Apr 1761
  1. Margaret E Edmondson1762 -
  2. John Montgomery Edmiston1764 - 1813
  3. Esther Edmiston1766 - 1823
  4. Samuel Edmiston1768 - 1821
  5. Robert Edmiston1771 - 1823
  6. Thomas Edmiston1773 - 1822
  7. Mary Edmonson1776 -
  8. Martha Montgomery (Patsy) Edmiston1777 -
  9. William Edmiston1781 -
m. 5 May 1781
  1. Andrew Edmiston1783 -
  2. General William Campbell Edmiston1785 - 1847
  3. Elizabeth (Betsy) Edmiston1788 -
  4. Sarah (Sally) Edmiston1790 -
  5. Catherine Moffett Edmiston1795 -
Facts and Events
Name Col. William Edmondson
Alt Name Col. William Edmiston
Gender Male
Birth? 27 October 1736 Cecil County, Maryland
Marriage 19 Apr 1761 Lancaster County, Pennsylvania
to Margaret Molly Montgomery
Marriage 5 May 1781 Augusta County, Virginiato Elizabeth Kennedy
Death? 30 July 1822 Glade Springs, Washington County, Virginia


Edmondson Tapestry

……………………..The Tapestry
Families Old Chester OldAugusta Germanna
New River SWVP Cumberland Carolina Cradle
The Smokies Old Kentucky




From: Source:Draper, et al., 1881:402-404. [2]

Major William Edmondson—or Edmiston, as frequently written in early days—the second in command of the Virginia regiment in the battle, was descended from Irish ancestry, and born in Cecil County, Maryland, in 1734. While he was yet young, his father removed to what is now Rockbridge County, Virginia, where he grew to years of manhood, receiving a limited education. He early engaged in the old French and Indian war.

Learning of Colonel Byrd's expedition down the Holston, destined against the Cherokees, in 1760, William Edmondson, and his brother Samuel, concluded to enlist, so as to give them an opportunity to examine the lands of the Holston country with a view to future settlement. While on this service, William Edmondson was guilty of the high crime of addressing an officer without taking off his hat, as was required of all soldiers, for which he was severely rebuked, and threatened with punishment. Reaching his comrades in great wrath, Edmondson loaded his rifle, and swore he would shoot the officer who had so grossly insulted him ; and it was with great difficulty, that his brother dissuaded him from it. One of the Virginia officers, who knew Edmondson, wrote to Governor Fauquier, that there was a high spirited soldier in his corps, who, unless commissioned, was likely to get into trouble. On the first of August, in that year, the Governor sent him an ensign's commission to serve on that expedition. But when Byrd got pretty well down the Valley, he took to camp, but made no further progress during that nor the following year. In 1763, Governor Fauquier sent Edmondson a commission of Lieutenant in the militia.

Having married a Miss Montgomery, he removed, after the war, to the New River frontiers, in now Grayson County; and subsequently to what now constitutes Washington County, settling on a tract of land received for his military services. In 1774 he was commissioned a Lieutenant in the militia of Fincastle County, served on the frontiers of Clinch and Sandy, and probably in Christian's regiment on the expedition to Point Pleasant and the Scioto: and, in 1776, he was made a Captain, and served on the campaign against the Cherokees in the fall of that year. In 1777, he was appointed a Justice, and failed only a few votes of an election to the House of Delegates. He was, this year, selected by the Legislature one of the commissioners for taking depositions against the claim of Henderson and Company to the Kentucky country.
Home of William Edmiston near Glade Springs VA
Home of William Edmiston near Glade Springs VA

During 1777, he was in service when the treaty was held at Long Island of Holston, and was much engaged, in 1778, in guarding the frontiers. Early in 1779, he commanded a company on Colonel Evan Shelby's Chickamauga expedition; and early in 1780, he was promoted to Major of the Washington regiment, serving on the expedition against the Tories on New river, and then on the King's Mountain campaign. At the close of the year he joined Colonel William Campbell's force, marching to the Long Island of Holston. He was advanced to Lieutenant-Colonel in 1781, and in 1783 to a full Colonel. During 1781 and 1782, he was much in service in protecting the frontiers.

By two marriages—the second to a Miss Kennedy—he had fifteen children One son, born soon after the death of his revered commander, he named General William Campbell Edmondson. He lived to a good old age, dying July thirtieth, 1822, in his eighty-ninth year. He was six feet, two inches high, possessed a vigorous mind; he was bold, manly, open-hearted, and generous. His attachments were strong, and his hatreds bitter, He served at one time as Sheriff of the County, and for many years presided, with great dignity, over the County Court. Judge Estill, who knew him well, declared, that "few more gallant, useful, and honorable men than Colonel Edmondson ever lived in any country."

Personal Data

Personal Data
DOB:1734Source:Draper, et al., 1881;Other sources give 27 Oct 1736 [3]
POB:Cecil County MDSource:Draper, et al., 1881; [4]
DOD:July 30, 1822Obituary Richmond Enquirer
POD:Glade Springs, Washington County, VASource:Draper, et al., 1881
Father:Person:John Edmiston (1)
Mother:Person:Margaret Buchanan (35)Alternative maiden name "Campbell"
Spouse 1:Margaret MontgomerySource:Draper, et al., 1881 as "Miss Montgomery". [5]
DOM:c1760based on DOB of eldest child
Spouse 2:Elizabeth KennedySource:Draper, et al., 1881 as "Miss Kennedy"


Children (Most Child data fide Howard Jones)
Name DOB POB DOD POD Spouse DOM POM Dispersion and Notes
Children by Margaret Montgomery
Margaret Edmiston 16 Feb 1762 John Montgomery husband reported as KBI shortly after marriage; "Mrs Margaret Edmiston Montgomery and Mr John Montgomery were captured by Indians in KY and Mr Montgomery was killed. Mrs Montgomery made a trail by breaking the weeds as she went. Robert Harald, Capt of a Company who followed their trail, overtook them and she ran into his arms. He later married her and they had 10 children." ephemeral source; Should be recoverable
John Montgomery Edmondson 21 Feb 1764 Battle of Raisin River, War of 1812 To Kentucky
Esther Edmiston 13 Apr 1766
Person:Samuel Edmiston (1) 7 Dec 1769 Alice Dean
Person:Robert Edmiston (4) 24 May 1771, Washington County, Va. 28 Jan 1823, Washington County, Va. Buried Old Moore Cem. Mary Glenn 4 Mar 1793 Washington County, Virginia, USA
Person:Thomas Edmiston 4 Aug 1773 Augusta Co VA Martha Buchanan b 29 Sep 1761 alt DOB 25 JUL 1759
Mary Elizabeth Edmiston 22 Jan 1776
Martha Montgomery Edmiston (2) 25 Jan 1777
Children by Elizabeth Kennedy
William Edmiston 5 May 1781
Andrew Edmiston 3 Aug 1783
General William Campbell Edmiston 18 Nov 1785 Glade Springs, Virginia 11 Jul 1847 Howell, Tennessee Elizabeth Stewart 11 Feb 1810 Bristol, Tennessee
Elizabeth (Betsy) Edmiston 2 Feb 1788
Sarah (Sally) Edmiston 31 Jul 1790
Catherine Moffett (Kate, Katsy) Edmiston 12 Mar 1795

Land Grant

From MySource:Dlbradley1/Howard Valance Jones:

He received a land tract of about 3000 acres from the King of England for his outstanding service in the French and Indian War[6] It was later known as the William Edmondson Tract. The tract made up the land between the north fork and the south fork of the Holston River. Parts of this tract were subsequently deeded, and or given as grants by William Edmiston to other members of the family. The Land was held by Col. William Edmiston under a grant from Charles II, King of England and under the King's proclamation of 1763, Edmiston being an officer in the French and Indian War of 1754-1763. The name Edmiston was used until about 1830 and for some unknown reason was changed at that time to Edmondson.[7]Need source for the forgoing quote.


From Chalkley’s Augusta County Records:

  • Vol. 2 - Page ___--William Edmiston deposes, 18th April, in Washington County, 1806, he lived on the land between 1740 to 1745; it was bounded by the land of Robert and Joseph Coulton, Robert Stuart and John Buchanan. James Wardlaw, living in Fayette County, Kentucky, was a very early settler. Deponent is 70 or 71 years old 27th of this month. (Note: establishes William Edmiston's birthdate as 27 April 1735 or 1736).

Augusta County Records

  • Vol. 2 - APRIL, 1793 (A to G). - Duncanson's executors vs. Brownlee--Certified copy of will of Andrew Duncan, Lincoln County, Va., dated 25th March, 1784, to sister's children, viz: Elizabeth Buchanan's son Andrew, to sister Mary Craig's son James, and sister Jenny Edminston's son Andrew, sister Jean McKenny's daughter Jenny, sister Florence Brownlee's daughter Jenny.--Exn. brother-in-law John Edminston and John McKenny. Witnesses: William Edminston, Robert Harrold, John Buckhanna. Proved in Lincoln County, 21st February, 1786. Willis Green, C. C.

Military Career

From (?):MySource:Dlbradley1/Howard Valance Jones:

Excerpted from Daughters of The American Revolution Application by Linda Carol Strahan Need verifiable reference to source documentation. Perhaps this should go into the digital library.

By 1763 William Edmiston was a Lieutenant in the militia in what is now Washington County, Virginia. He served on the frontier of the Clinch and Sandy Rivers. He was probably with Christian's Regiment in the expedition against the "Indians" of Point Pleasant and Scotia. In 1774 he was commissioned a Lieutenant of the Continental Army.
In 1776 he was made Captain and served that fall in the campaign against the Cherokees. In 1777 he was appointed a Justice (of the peace), he was nominated but not elected to the Assembly, and he was appointed to take depositions in the case of 'Virginia vs. Henderson'. He was in active service when the Long Island Treaty with the "Indians" was drawn. In 1778 he was guarding the frontiers. Early in 1779 he commanded a company on Colonel Evan Shelby's Chicamauga expedition. Early in 1780 he was promoted to Major and was second in command of the Washington County Militia, in which capacity he fought Tories on New River and the Battle of King's Mountain[1][2][3]. In 1781 he became Lieutenant Colonel and continued to command one of the two battalions of the Washington County Militia. He continued to defend the frontiers. In 1783, when Colonel William Campbell died, he became a full Colonel and served until the end of The Revolutionary War.

Source:Thwaites and Kellogg, 1905:84 provides a different perspective:

Lieut. William Edmiston (Edmondston) was born in Maryland (1734), but early emigrated to Virginia, where he owned the tract in Augusta on which Liberty Hall was situated. He was a private in the French and Indian War, and on the Cherokee campaign of 1760. This experience led to his appointment as ensign, and later as lieutenant (1763), of Augusta militia. One of the earliest settlers on the Middle Fork of Holston, along with the Campbells, he long served second in command to William Campbell, and acted in that capacity at the battle of King's Mountain. Upon the death of his chief, he took his place as colonel of the Washington militia (1782). He was an ardent Whig, signed the Association in 1775, and was one of the committee of safety (1776). He died at his home in Washington County in 1822. Prominent in all the affairs of southwestern Virginia, his relatives and descendants were among the most influential of the region. Eight members of this family were in service at King's Mountain, where three were killed and one badly wounded.


From a Wayside marker outside of Abingdon: (probably needs a specific source).

"William Edmiston was named by General William Campbell as the commanding officer of the Virginia Militia at the Battle of King's Mountain, SC. Known for braverary under fire Major Edmiston ordered his troops up the mountain in the first line of fire. One third of all the men killed and wounded in battle were memebers of the Virginia Militia. Later Major Edmiston served as trustee of the town of Abingdon. He died on 30 July 1822. His place of burial is unknown.


Captain: William Edmiston Lieutenants: William Blackburn, Rees Brown, Robert Edmiston, Sr, and Thomas McCulloch. Ensigns: John Beattle, James Cory, Nathaniel Dryden, Andrew Edmiston, Richard Gist, James Laird, Humberson Lyon and James Phillips. Privates: William Flower, Henry Henniger and Elisha Pepper" The site is also part of the NPS Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail.

Marker Title: Battle of Kings Mountain SC-7 Oct 1780
Marker Location: 702 Colonial Road SW
County or Independent City: Abingdon,

Time Line

1740 moves to Borden's Grant age 6
1734 Born
1754–1763 Participates in French and Indian War, age 20-29
1765 relocates to New River, age 31
1770 Relocates to SW VA, age 36
1776 Captain, Christian's Cherokee Expedition, age 42
1780 Major, Tory expedition, King's Mountain, age 46
1781 Lt. Col, age 47
1783 Full Col., age 49


  1.   Howard Valance Jones.

    Howard has given permission to use his work on this web site. Howard Valance Jones Reserves all Rights on his own contributions. Howard is one who is noted and highly respected for his many years of research on the Edmondson family

  2. Draper collected extensive information from person who were familiar with the early settlers and Revolutionary War era veterans. The data he provides can, at least as a first approximation, be relied on to reflect if not the facts surrounding a persons life, at least what the person's contemporaries thought were facts. It would be useful to examine the Draper MSC more closely to see the exact sources that he used for this biography. Source:Allison, 1960 provides a transcript of a letter from Capt. Andrew Edmonson to governor David Campbell, dated 1846. Washington County, Virginia, that Allison obtained from the Draper MSC, and which undoubtedly served as the main basis for Draper's biography of Col. Edmiston. Allison's work is available online at Ancestry. A snippet from her work, including her transcription of the letter is available in the Digital Library
  3. ="alt DOB">Need the alternative source id
  4. Source:Allison, 1960 quotes an 1846 letter from William Edmiston's son Andrew Edmondson, to Governor David Campbell, in which Andrew says "My father was born in Cecil County, Maryland, in the year 1734." This letter was apparently used in part as the basis for Draper's biography of Edmiston.
  5. The genealogical community (As represented by an examination of Ancestry Family Trees, as of 27 January 2008) seems to have broadly accepted the given names of Williams wives, but commonly give varying middle names (e.g, Margaret Nancy, Margaret Agnes, Mary Elizabeth, etc.
  6. See also OhioHistoryCentral.
  7. [Kegley, 1980]] does identify an Ensign William Edmondston who received an award for 2000 acres for service in the F&I. This may be the same person referred to in this note, though the amount of land differs. [Need source data for the 3000 acre award, as well as background on William Edmiston (6)


Heitman, Historical Register of the Officers of the Continental Army, 1914, Reprint 1982, page 212
Edmiston, The Genealogy of a Branch, pages 14-15, 32-39
Gwathmey, Virginia in the Revolution, page 249
Draper, Lyman C., King's Mountain and Its Heroes,pages 402-4.
Bockstruck, Lloyd Dewitt, Virginia's Colonial Soldiers, pages 155, 228
DAR Patriot Index, 1990, page 930
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