Scott County Historical Society
Scott County, Virginia

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Mildred McConnell's Scrapbook Articles

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The Elliots Gather

Descendants Discussed


THE KILGORE FORTHOUSE, built in 1786, still stands near Nickelsville, Va.

By L. F. ADDINGTON
Times-News Correspondent

     GATE CITY, Va.-They're talking about their relatives at the Elliott Reunion today, but not those attending. The topic of conversation is about their descendants.

     The main topic of the reunion program is Charles Kilgore and his descendants.

     The reunion is at the Mt. Pleasant Church.

     Charles was one of five brothers who participated in the battle of King's Mountain, S. C. in the 18th Century. He and his brother, Robert, was wounded. Another brother, Hiram was killed, but two brothers, William and James escaped unharmed.

     The new s drifted back to Charles' wife at Osborne's Ford (now Dungannon) that he was unable to find a way home.

     His wife, Winnie, and their 14-year-old daughter, Mary, set out on horseback through the wilderness for King's Mountain.

     After finding Charles, who was very ill, the trio began the long trek home. Upon arrival, he discovered his oldest son, Charles Jr., was still, away fighting, and another son, Robert, 15, was in love with Jane Porter.

     Jane was the daughter of Patrick Porter who ran a grist mill on Fall Creek and had a fort a few miles west of the mill.

     Two years later, however, Robert saw his beloved Jane married to James Green. But fate was to bring her back to him ..

     Soon after the close of the revolution, raiding bands of Cherokee Indians ki1led a number of people along the Clinch River. James Green was one of the victims.

     Robert Kilgore began courting Jane Porter Green and in 1785 they were married.

     With Indians still plundering in the vicinity, the couple built a forthouse. The forthouse, built in 1786, Is still standing on Copper Creek near Nickelsville.

     Robert, better known as Robin. lived in this fort 68 years.

     On April 16, 1808, he was ordained a·Primitive Baptist minister and served the church until his death in 1854.

     Records show that during his ministry he performed 285 marriages.

     It was he and his staunch church members who virtually controlled the pattern of behavior among the people of the vicinity.

     When one scans the church minutes of the business ses sions, one reads such items as:

     "Dec. 17, 1809 --- church grieved at Brother E. Harris for attending a frolic. He acknowledged his fault and is forgiven.

     "Nov. 15, 1817 - Brother Ralph Kilgore cited for drinking too much of the stimulus.

     "July, 1841-Excluded John Jackson for whipping his wife. "

     Jan. 17, 1847 -. Excluded Moore for gambling at a shooting match."

     On March 17, 1849, Rev. Kilgore was appointed by the church to deal with two of his kinsmen, Charles and James Kilgore, for trafficking in liquor."

     Charles and James argued with the church committee that times were hard and the church shouldn't object to their making money with liquor. Their arguments went unheeded and they were excluded by unanimous vote.

     The minutes of February 18, 1854 rea ds: "Polly Salyers is excluded for imposing herself on the church while pregnant."

     Although Charles Kilgore and his family were constantly fearful of Indian attacks, there were none, and the forthouse went unharmed and is still standing after 178 years.

     In 1933 it was the site of the Kilgore family reunion with speakers being the late R. M. Addington, clerk of the Scott County Court and author of the Scott County History, and the late Dr. John Preston McConnell, president of Radford College.

     This is the first reunion for the descendants of Charles Kilgore in about 18 years.

 

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