Family Stories

Veterans of Mackville – Washington County

I took my first flight this weekend – yes, unbelievable in this day and age.  Ritchey and I usually drive since genealogy is always part of where we go – back country roads, criss-crossing counties to find those elusive cemeteries.  Our son, Linton, moved to Seattle July 1st.  Kate, our daughter, and I flew out for a quick three-day trip (she can’t leave the babies for very long!).    What a marvelous experience to float so high above the earth, to see mountains, rivers and cities.  Let’s just say it will not be my last!  Jet lag caused a delay in posts!

Mackville is a very small town in central eastern Washington County.  Take Hwy 152 east from the city of Springfield.  The population is about 225.

Pioneer History of Washington County, Kentucky, as compiled from newspaper articles by Orval W. Baylor and others.

Veterans of Mackville

There were several veterans of the Revolution who resided in or near the town of Mackville.  Chief among these were John McKittrick, Sr., Joseph Sweeney and Adam Darnall, Jr.

John McKittrick, Sr., familiarly known as ‘Captain Jack,’ was a native of Augusta County, Virginia.  He moved to Kentucky in 1793 and was one of the ‘Macs’ for whom Maxsville, as the town was originally known, was named.

‘Captain Jack’ volunteered for service in the militia at Staunton, Virginia, September 25, 1777, and was assigned to Capt. George Moffett’s company, under Col. John Dickinson.  After a period of several months, during which time he ‘marched against the Wyandotte Indians,’ McKittrick returned to his home where he remained until October 2, 1780, when he was ‘drafted into the militia service of Virginia near Staunton in Sergeant James Tate’s company in Major Triplett’s Battalion for three months and marched to Hillsboro, N. C., to the relief of General Gates.’  He was later attached to the regiment of General Morgan and ‘served as a sergeant at the battle of Guilford, N. C.’  His commission as captain came to him in 1781 when he commanded a three months tour and was present at ‘Tarleton’s defeat at the Cowpens.’

Alexander McDonald, Vincent Morgan and Turner Smith, the latter a clergyman, residents of the Mackville sector and neighbors of Captain Jack, testified in court concerning his character, as did also John McGill, Sr., and Richardson Holman, Sr., all saying they considered him ‘an honest good citizen.’  McGill, a Revolutionary veteran himself, said he served with McKittrick for seven months during the year 1777 and again in 1780 and 1781.

Captain John McKittrick was twice married.  His first wife dying, he married a second time on May 7, 1817, Sally Williams.  By his first marriage he had eleven children.  By his second marriage, none.  He died February 1, 1839, and left a considerable estate.  Among his real estate holdings were several lots in the town of Mackville.  They were sold after his death to Stith Mayes, Henry Isom and Robert Reed.  His children were:  Thomas, Margaret, James, Gordon, William, Robert, Jane, Amanda, Sarah, Polly, and a daughter whose name I do not know.  She married Jeremiah Lowe.

Of the daughters, Jane married John Schooling, November 22, 1810.  Polly married James Schooling, December 6, 1825.  John and James Schooling were brothers and sons of James Schooling, Sr., who came to Washington County from Virginia shortly after the Revolution.  Amanda McKittrick married James H. Young.

Adam Darnall, Jr., a native of Fauquier County, Virginia, was born in 1761.  He enlisted in the 3rd Virginia Regiment commanded by Col. Heath, in February 1779, and continued in the service for two years.  He was ‘at the battle of Monmouth and other skirmishes’ and ‘in the militia service to take Cornwallis.’

Darnall applied for a pension in 1821, saying that he was aged 60, a resident of Washington County and had a wife and three children under age living with him.

Joseph Sweeney, like McKittrick and Darnall, was a Virginia.  He hailed from Amherst County where he was born February 28, 1760.  He married Nancy Whitton of Amherst in 1781 and moved to Kentucky about the year 1794.

Sweeney was a private in Captain Yarbee’s company of the Virginia Line, Continental establishment but later was detached to General Charles Russell who acted as Quartermaster General and was appointed Wagon Master.  He was at the siege of Yorktown.

Joseph Sweeney and his wife, Nancy Whitton, first settled in Lincoln County, Kentucky.  They were living there ‘at the time of the defeat of the U.S. Army under General St. Clair.’  From Lincoln County they moved to Washington County.  They had:  William, Elizabeth and Moses.  Nancy Sweeney was still living in 1851 when she made application for a pension.

3 replies »

  1. I have a lot of history in the Washington County, Mackville – Dugansville – Antioch corridor. If you look at the 1900 census for Dugansville precinct you’ll see my grandfather Leslie L. Bryant as the enumerator. He and his family are listed as #1 on the record. At that time his family consisted of his wife Lula, son Barbour (Russell) and a niece, Molly Cozine (daughter of Missouri Bryant). My great grandfather, Thomas lived on Sulfur Lick creek only about half mile from Antioch Christian Church, where at least two relations are buried. Sadly, our Bryant tree hits a brick wall here. Records are not forthcoming

  2. Hi, I’d really like to speak with you more about the history of Captain John (aka Jack? aka James?) McKittrick! He was (I believe) my great-great-great-great-great-great grandfather. I know who Jeremiah Lowe married. Her name was Melissa Young. But I believe she was not John’s daughter – she was his granddaughter. That is what our family has on record. We have on record that one of John’s children was named Becksianna McKittrick. And I don’t have her husband’s name, but it would have had to have been last name Young, because their child Melissa Young married Jeremiah.

    I’d love to talk to you more in detail about all of this, and compare our records! My family line continued on through Melissa Young and Jeremiah, who had a son named John Lowe, who had a daughter named Mattie. Mattie Lowe sold Captain John’s land, I believe, to Robert Reed. She and her husband (also named John) had a daughter named Gladys Gillespie, who was my great grandmother.

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