THE REVOLUTIONARY WAR RECORDS
of GARRETT WATTS
husband of Anna (Self) Watts
transcribed and contributed by Debra
Revolutionary Records Transcribed from
the National Archives by Debra Knight
Page 1: Garett Watts of Tormy (or Surry on the boarder of Virgina
near Tennessee) Co. in the state of North Carolina who was a Private in
the Company commanded by Captain Smith of the first command by
Smith. $23.33 annum
Inscribed in the Roll of NC at the rate of $23.33 per annum to commence
on the 4th day of March 1831. Certificate of Pension issued the
16th day of July 18__
Revolutionary Claim Act July 7, 1832 Recorded in Book C Vol. 8 page 43
State of Tennessee, Gibson County: On the 6th day of June 1851,
personally appearing before me, Anna Watts, age 84, who being duly
sworn according to the law, both on her oath, mark, the following
declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the pension... for the
benefit on the widow of Deceased claims that she is the widow of
Garrett Watts who was a private in the Revolutionary War. He was
in Gates Defeat under General (Francis) Marion ( also called the
Elusive Swamp Fox). She thinks and in the company of Captain
Summons and she was married to the said soldier Garrett Watts on the
16th day of July in the year 1787 and that he died on the 6th day of
February, 1838. That she was married to him prior to 1800.
She states that her said husband received a certificate from the
pension office which has been lost or mislaid. She states that
her husband is the identical Garrett Watts who drew a pension until the
date of June 7th, 1832 which certificate is on record.. in the pension
office Book E, Vol. 8 page 2-3. She further states that her name
before her marriage was Anna Self. She states that her husband
never received from the government but $106. She states that she
is still a widow and respectfully asks of the Department that she may
receive a certificate authorizing her to draw her pension in the
further in Jackson, Tennessee. She makes this declaration of
Congress for the Benefit of the Widow of deceased soldiers. Given
to ... subscribe before me this day and year above written in the state
I am acquainted with Mrs. Anna Watts that she is still a widow and I
believe her said acclamations and that she is of the age above stated.
Anna Watts (her mark)
State of Tennessee, Gibson
County: Personally appearing before me as an active Justice of
the Peace in the said county, Annis Scarbrough and John Scarbough who
being duly sworn state that they are acquainted with Mrs. Anna Watts
after her marriage with the said Garrett Watts that her name before her
marriage was Anna Self that they married and stayed together as
man and wife for many years and that the said Garrett Watts died the
6th day of February, 1838 and that she is till a widow, Sworn
before me the day and year stated and I state that I am acquainted with
the said Annis and John Scarbough that I believe them in the above
Dennis Fatum J.P.
State of Tennessee: Gibson
County: Be it known that of the 22nd day of March AD 1852
personally appeared before me an acting Justice of the Peace within and
for the county afore said. Anna Watts age about 56 years and being duly
sworn according to the law, declares that she is the widow of Garrett
Watts, dead who was a private in the Revolutionary War. She does
not know what company of regiment he was in but she has heard him
repeatedly speak of being in General Gates Defeat but she thinks he
enlisted in the state of Virgina that she was married to Garret Watts
on the 16th day of July 1787 in the twentieth year of her age in the
County of Anson in the state of North Carolina by one Steven Pace
Justice of the Peace and she lived with this Garrett until the day of
his death which she thinks occurred on the 6th day of February, 1838 in
Perry County, State of Alabama and that she is still a widow, states
that her husband Garrett never made application for his pension until
he was unable to support himself by reason of old age and infirmity and
that after his name was placed on the list of pensioners in the state
of Alabama in the pension office, Book E. Vol. 8, pages 2-3, he drew
from the government some money. She does not recall how
much. She does not think he drew more than $96 for the last three
or four years before his death. She states that she does not know
what has become of his certificate. She state that she has not
made application for the renewal of her husband's pension until now for
the reason that she was not advised she was entitled to a pension as
the widow of the said Garrett she makes this application for the
purpose of obtaining the amount of pension due her said husband up to
the time of his death under the Acts 2nd March 1829 and 29th June 1840
and the amount due her as the widow of the said Garrett under the Acts
of Congress passed March 3, 1843, June 17, 1844, July 7th, 1838, July
29th 1848 and other acts and resolutions passed for the benefit of the
widow of Revolutionary Soldiers. Sworn to and subscribed before
me Anna Watts the day and year above written and I mark certified that
I believe the facts in the declaration to be true and that she was and
that she has or can secure no leen enduce of her.
Dennis Fatum, Justice of the Peace
State of Tennessee, Gibson County: Personally appeared before me
a Justice of the Peace for the county and the state afore said Thomas
Evans age about 64 years and being duel sworn states that he was
acquainted with the said Garrett Watts for more than thirty years
before his death, that he was always known to be the husband of Anna
Watts, that they lived together as man and wife, that they raised a
family of children and that he said that Anna is still a widow of
Garrett Watts and that the said Garrett died in Perry County, Alabama
about the year 1838. Sworn to and subscribed before me this
the 29th day of March, 1852 and I certify that he is credible.
Thomas Evans (his signature)
Dennis Fatum J.P.
The State of Alabama, Perry County: County Court June 7, AD 1834
On this 6th day of June in the year of our Lord 1834 personally appears
before me in open court before Dunklin Sullivan, Judge of the County
Court of the county and State afore said now sitting, Garrett Watts, a
resident of the County of Perry, and state of Alabama, age 78 years,
who being first duly sworn according to law doth on his oath make the
following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the Act of
Congress passed June 7th, 1832. That he entered the service of
the United States under the following officers and served as here in
"To the best of my recollection in the
fall of the year 1779, as a private, I entered the service of the
United States. It was a company of Calvary that I first entered
under the command of Captain Mines Smith. This company composed a
part of a Regiment of Calvary (the number of which I cannot
remember). The major of the regimen was Charles Polk (called
Devil Charley), of Mecklenburg, County of North Carolina. The
Colonel who commanded this regimen was also called Colonel Smith.
I do not know his given name.
I lived in
Perry County of North Carolina at that time. I believe it was in
October of the year above stated that I enlisted. My time of
subscribe was for three months as follows. I well remember that
at the time, Lord Rawdon and Cornwallis was said to be in Wilmington
and the times had become greatly encouraged down in that quarter.
The first proceeded from Perry County to Salem from 10 to 15
miles thence in the direction of Wilmington, a distance of perhaps near
two hundred miles. Information was received by our officers from
a Colonel Isom and who resided in the neighborhood we passed near
Wilmington.. and we approached the place at which the Tories were
assembled by two different mountains and from opposite
directions. Whether our arrival was too early or had been
suspected by the Tories is uncertain. We found but seven
men at the place, all of whom were killed. There was a great
multitude of women there. We moved a few miles from that
place and encamped during the night, which was dark and
rainy. We were attacked suddenly by a large body of Tories
and we were engaged for a short time. After the first confusion was
over, we were ordered to charge, dark as it was, except the light of
the guns, we were successful in driving them back. A few were
killed and wounded on both sides. We lost some of our men but
successfully recovered most of them next day. We also killed one
or two of the enemy next day. This was near a lake which was
called Mackamaw, which we swam several times. I think I was now
near twenty-three years old.
What I have above stated is the principal part of my service. Our
return was by way of Fayetteville, near what was called Cross
Creek: At this place we were discharged. It is rather
my belief that I had a written discharge. If I had, I have lost
it and know not how.
Four or five months after my first
term expired, and after I had moved to Caswell County in the same
state, I was again called into service as a private, in the North
Carolina as a foot soldier. The lieutenant of the company to
which I belonged was named Borice, the Captain was named Odense.
The name of the Colonel of the regiment I now belonged, I do not
know. It marched from the upper part of North Carolina down to
Fayetteville. At this place we were put under the command of
General Butler. This was a distance of sixty or eighty
miles. We were marching to Cantoole in N/S Carolina, by the
route of nearly one hundred miles. We here took the command of
General (Horatio Gates, also of General Dekalb. Dekalb also
had command. He of the regular soldiers. We next marched to
Rugeley's Mills (the name of a notorious old Tory Colonel) in South
Carolina, a distance of perhaps seventy or eighty miles from Rugeley's
Mills to five or six miles further to a place called Suttons, as well
as I remember. This was not far from Camden where the British were
under Rawdon and Cornwallis.
The two armies came near each other at
Suttons about 12 or 1 O'clock in the night. This was the year
seventeen hundred eighty. The Pickets fired several rounds before
day. I will remember everything that occurred that morning.
I remember that I was amongst the worst to the (position)
army. That a man named John Limmons was my section
leader, that we had orders to wait for the word to commence firing,
that the militia was in front and in public condition at that, that
they were fatigued. The weather was warm exceptionally.
They had been fed a short time previous on molasses entirely. I
can state on oath that I believe my gun was the first gun fired not
withstanding the orders: for we were close to the (enemy) army, who
appeared to maneuver in contempt of us, and I fired without thinking
except that I might prevent the man opposite from killing me. The
discharge and loud roar soon became general from one end of the lines
to the other. Amongst other things, I confess I was amongst the
first that fled. The cause of that I cannot tell, except that
everyone I saw was about to do the same. It was instantaneous.
There was no effect to really know encouragement to fight,
officers and Tories in the flight. I threw away my gun, and
reflecting, I might be punished for being found without arms. I
picked up a drum, which gave forth such sounds when touched by the
twigs I cast it away when we had gone. We heard the sounds
of guns still, but we knew not why. Had we known, we might have
returned. It was that portion of the army commanded by DeKalb
fighting still. DeKalb was killed. General Dickson wounded
in his neck and a great many killed and wounded even on the first
firing. After this defeat, many of the dispersed troops
proceeded to Winnsboro in North Carolina. I obtained a furlough
from General Dickson and permission to return home a short time.
This last term was for the space of three months and truly
Not long after the defeat of General
Gates at Camden, I think nearly three months, General Green, a regular
officer came from the North. This is also as well as I remember as I
surmise is seventeen hundred and eighty. I entered the service again
under Captain Odon( the Corl. I think was named Col. Legon) being again
drafted under ... General Green. I was at the Battle of
Guilford Court House under General Green. This was fought at some
old fields turned out and surrounded by old fences. General Green
having divided his army into three divisions. Behind one of these
fences, placed first a division of select rifleman. Second the
militia were stationed near the woods. Last and still
further in this, was to prevent a retreat like General Gates, were
placed the regulars. This was a great battle, both sides fought
until they were willing to cede, but we had the advantage for the last
division was just beginning to bear heavy on them and the British had
to give back. These were times of great suffering. We had
but little to eat and as little to wear, feeble and worn down.
I was also, during this term of my service, with General Green at the
battle of Camden or saw it through carelessness or otherwise, the tired
soldiers were suffered to wash at the river Wantenee and in the noon
time, a drummer belonging to some of the regiments under General Green
deserted, entered Camden and told the British know our condition.
They came out upon us and we had to fight hard and fiercely, were
compelled to give way.
Shortly after this, my last term of
service expended, to the best of my recollection, I served and was
subject to constant service for nine months if not more. If I
ever had written discharges, I have lost them but my recollection is
indistinct as to that. I never did receive the amount of pay I
was entitled to. The small amount I did receive was in currency
money which turned out to be of no value. I served as a private
the whole time. I have no documentary evidence of my
service. I know of no person now living whose testimony I can
produce or who can testify as to my service. I hereby relinquish
every claim whatever to a pension or annuity except the present, and
declare that my name is not on the pension roll of the agency of any
state. Sworn to and subscribed this day and year afore
said. Garett Watts (JB)
To the following interrogations by the
War Department the applicant answers as follows:
1. When and in what year were you born?
Answer: I was born on the eighth day of January, 1756, in
Caroline County and State of Virginia. At the age of twelve,
moved to North Carolina, where I entered the service of the United
2. Have you any record of your
age and if so where is it?
Answer: My age is recorded in my father's family Bible which is
in the possession of some of his decedents. I know not whom.
3. Where were you living when
called into the service? Where have you been since the
Revolutionary War and where do you now live?
Answer: When I was first called into the service, I lived in
Perry, County North Carolina. The two next times in Caswell
County of the same state. Afterwards, I moved to
Jefferson County, Georgia, thence to Pendleton, Bledsor County, and
Tennessee. Thence to Jefferson County, thence to Perry County of
this state which I now reside.
4. How were you called into
service?: Were you drafted, did you volunteer, or were you a
substitute and if a substitute, for whom?
Answer: I volunteered the first time in a horse company,
afterwards drafted both times.
5. State the names of some of
the regular officers who were with the troops when you served,
Continental and Militia, Regiments as you can recall.
Answer: As a regular officer when I served I mentioned General
Sumter (Thomas Sumpter known as the Gamecock of the Revolution, Sumpter
was a vigorous leader of guerrilla forces against the British in the
Carolinas in 1780. Sumpter rallied the colonists and revived a
troop of mounted solders by promising plunder from settlers loyal to
the British), Gates (Gates was praised a hero when the American troops
under his command defeated John Burgoyne in 1777. He was called a
fool three years later after his army was routed by Cornwallis at
Camden, South Carolina, a friend of George Washington. In 1780
has given the command of the Carolina Theater. In a fierce
engagement with the British regulars under Cornwallis, Gates poorly
trained Arny was smashed at Camden on August 16, 1780. It was one
of America's most costly defeats. He was replaced by Nathaniel
Green. Marion's volunteers under Gates were described a
Continental officer as such "distinguished by small black leather caps
and the wretchedness of their attire. their number did not exceed
20 men and boys, some white, some black, all mounted, but most poorly
equipped." Gates ordered Marion's men to march and attend his as
he advanced toward the enemy's post at Camden.), Green, (often ranks
second to General George Washington as a military strategist, Green
commanded American forces in the South after 1780 and liberated the
Carolinas and Georga from British control. Green served in the
Battles of Brandywine, Germantown, and Monmouth. He was appointed
quartermaster general in 1778 and two years later succeeded
Gates. At the time, the Carolinas were under British Forces which
had seized Charleston in 1780. Although Cornwallis defeated Green
at Guilford Court House near modern day Greensboro, NC, in 1781, his
victory was costly and indecisive,) DeKalb, Dickson(One of the few
members of the second Continental Congress who took up arms. When
the British threatened Philadelphia in 1777 he served temporarily as a
private in the Battle of Brandywine) were regular officers but the
others were- I do not know how to designate the regiments particularly
the numbers. I can not recollect things. A slight
imperfection of my mind, that I belonged to the Fourth of C ----
. I have stated the general circumstances of my
service as best as I am able.
6. Did you ever received a
discharge from the service? If so, by whom was it given and what
has become of it?
Answer: I think that I received discharges, once from Capt. Oden,
the other from Cor. Smith. If I did, I have lost them years ago.
7. List the names of
persons to whom you are known in you present neighborhood and who can
testify as to your character for veracity, and their belief of your
services in the Revolution?
Answer: I could state a great many names, but will name a
few: Samuel Boydstore, Balem Self, Joseph Evans, Rev. John Craig.
J. B. Nave
Garrett Z. Watts
We, John Craig a clergyman residing in
the County of Perry and State of Alabama, and Balam Self (Balam was
Ann's cousin, son of Parrish, Vincent's brother.)residing in the same,
hereby certify that we are well acquainted with Garrett Watts who has
subscribed and sworn to the above and foregoing declaration: That
we believe him to be seventy-eight years of age that he is reputed and
believed in the neighborhood where he resided, to have been a soldier
of the Revolution and that we concur in that opinion.
Sworn to and subscribed the day and
His mark X
And the said court do hereby declare thus a pension after the
investigation prescribed by the War Department...that the above
applicant was a Revolutionary soldier and served as he stated.
The court further certified that it appears to them that John Craig,
who has signed the proceeding certificate is a clergyman resident in
the County of Perry and State of Alabama and that Balaam Self, who has
also signed the same is also a resident of the same county and state
and is a honorable person, and entitled to credit.
Dunkin Sullivan, Judge
Some notes in parenthesis of
historical content were added by the transcriber Debra C. Knight.
Records found in the National Archives, Laguna Nigel, CA 1999.
Jesse B. Nave, Clerk of the County Court of the county of Perry and
State of Alabama, do hereby certify that the foregoing pages from one
to seven as numbered contain the original proceedings of the said court
in the matter of the application of Garrett Watts for pension.
In testimony whereof, I
have hereunder set my hand
and seal of office this the sixth day of June, A. D. 1834
County Court P.
Deposition of Judge Samuel Adair, in
the case of the Watts Family claiming Cherokee Citizenship.
Personally came before me, W.H.
Turner, clerk of the Supreme court, Cherokee Nation, Judge Samuel
Adair, and on oath makes the following statement to wit:
There was a man passed our house on several occasions, going and coming
from Okunnea Station on the border of South Carolina, Old Cherokee
Nation, East, who, I was informed was by name Garrett Watts and I heard
my father say he was an Indian.
Notes on the court proceedings in Perry County AL
Garrett Watts was born in Caroline County Virginia, January 8,
1756. At age 12 he moved to North Carolina and from there entered
the service of the United States. The account of his
Revolutionary War service is his own. He is shown on the Surry
County Tax List in 1782 as being single with two horses. He
married Anna Self in Anson County, North Carolina. Deed transfers in
Anson County range from 1790-1797. He bought property adj. Thomas Gaddy
on Jan. 27, 1790, property on Glade Lick on Aug. 23, 1795 and was
granted property by the State of North Carolina, adj. Robert Rees, Dec.
1795. He sold property on the PeeDee River Sep. 25, 1792, on
Glade Lick, Mar. 31, 1796, and the property on Glade Lick Branch was
sold by the Sheriff Jan. 16. 1797.
They were new in Smith's Settlement, Georgia in 1798, along with
Jesse Scarborough, Lewis Phebus, Jesse and Willliam Dodd, Peter
Baugess, Gideon Canterberry, Lewis, Mastin, and Stephen Williams.
We find him in Pendleton County, S. C. in 1800, Jefferson County,
Georgia in 1805. In his Revolutionary War pension application, he
states he was in Bledsoe County East Tennessee. They settled in
Jefferson County, Alabama, where some of their children were born.
Their final years were spent in Perry County, Alabama. They
were only there four years when Garrett died. No marker has been
found for his burial place.
There are records of a Garrett Watts being granted land in Lincoln
County Tennessee, for Revolutionary War service, but have no
documentation that it is Garrett Z. Watts.
WATTS, GARRETT, aged 78, and a resident of Perry County; private, N.C.
Militia; enrolled on July 16, 1834, under act of Congress of June 7,
18:32, payment to date from March 4, 1831; annual allowance, $23.33.
Revolutionary Pension Roll, in Vol. xiv, Sen. Doc. 514, 23rd Cong., 1st
Alabama Revolutionary War Soldiers
about Garrett Watts
Name: Garrett Watts
Res: Perry county
Comment: private N. C. Militia; enrolled on July 16, 1834, under act of
Congress of June 7, 1832, payment to date from March 4, 1831; annual
allowance, $23.33.--Revolutionary Pension Roll, in Vol. xiv, Sen. Doc.
514, 23rd Cong., 1st sess., 1833-34.
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