*ALEXANDER EWING--Marriage #1
(NO RECORD OF CHILDREN FROM THIS MARRIAGE)
^EUPHEMY PURNEL--note--Except for the documentation of her marriage in VA to Alexander Ewing (Alexander Ewing m. Euphemy Purnel on Sept. 11, 1786 in Montgomery Co., VA. Marriage Book A pg. 12), much about Euphemy and her fate remains a mystery.
*ALEXANDER EWING--Marriage #2
Alexander Ewing was born on the estate of his father, John Ewing, in Montgomery County, VA. He was my third great-grandfather. Alexander was 23 when the Revolution began and he lost no time in joining to fight for his new country.
His official war record can be found in several sources, one of which is Francis B. Heitman, Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army, p.220: " Ewing, Alexander (Va). 2d Lieutenant 14th Virginia, 3d September, 1777; regiment designated 10th Virginia, 14th September, 1778; 1st Lieutenant, 14th February, 1779; Captain, —, 1781; Aide-de-Camp to General Greene, 1781 to close of war; wounded at Guilford, 15th March, 1781. (Died 1822.)" His resignation dated January 1, 1782, was signed by "Steuben, Maj. Gen. commanding in Virginia." He was referred to as "Devil Alex" by his fellow soldiers, one would hope in honor of his ferocious style of combat.
After his resignation, Alexander received a North Carolina Military Warrant (No. 909) for 2,666+ acres of land in what is now Tennessee. Most of the land was in Davidson County, but his Will indicates that he also owned land in Wilson, Franklin, Williamson, and Rutherford counties, TN. This land grant and another mention of Alexander's being wounded in combat at The Battle of Guilford Courthouse are recorded in Revolutionary War Bounty Land Grants Awarded by State Governments by Lloyd DeWitt Bockstruck, p. 171.
Alexander resided and later died on his Davidson County land, most of which can be found in the northern part of Nashville. His mansion, Woodlon Hall, is still in existence, as well as the family burial ground. The Ewing name is seen in various landmarks and roads, such as Ewing Creek, and Ewing Creek Drive. He and my 3rd great-grandmother Sarah (Sally) were most successful in the husbandry of the plantation and its operation. In his Last Will and Testament, he bequeathes specific tracts of land to his heirs totalling 2,798 acres, 150 shares of the capital stock of the Bank of the State of Tennessee, several town lots, and fifty slaves listed by name. An Inventory of Goods made after his death showed other of his possessions. He had indeed become a wealthy man, the last of my direct line to be in such an enviable position.
WOODLON HALL, Nashville, TN (built c. 1822 )
Alexander and Sally were active in the social life of Davidson County and were contemporaries of Andrew Jackson's and Rachel Donelson's families. In fact, Andrew Jackson witnessed Alexander's signature on at least one legal document. Rachel Donelson's brothers engaged in the defense of their land and neighboring plantations against Indian attack, along with Alexander and his sons. Although Tennessee was still in some ways a frontier land fraught with expected and unexpected dangers, lavish entertainments were hosted by plantation owners like Alexander Ewing, Andrew Jackson, and the Donelsons--made possible by the wealth accumulated from careful supervision of lands and other goods and by the labor furnished by slaves. But this way of life was fast approaching an end in the South, and the Civil War loomed on the horizon. The day of the "Gentleman Planter" both in the more established South and on this newer frontier was fast approaching its demise.
My second great-grandfather James Ewing would see life on Ewing lands change radically, for he lived on upon that land after the Civil War had ended and witnessed and experienced the tragic results first-hand.
TEXT OF THE LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT OF ALEXANDER EWING OF NASHVILLE