William Woodford, General (1734 - 1780)

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Brig.Gen. William Woodford's Geni Profile

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Birthplace: Caroline County, Virginia, USA
Death: Died in New York, New York, USA
Managed by: Shelley Chrystal Mactyre
Last Updated:

About William Woodford, General

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Woodford

William Woodford (6 October 1734 – 13 November 1780) was an American Revolutionary War general from Virginia.

He was born in Caroline County, Virginia, in a town now known as Woodford. He served in the French and Indian War as an ensign in Colonel George Washington's Virginia Regiment, and was promoted to lieutenant in 1761. During that year he served in the Cherokee expedition under William Byrd and Adam Stephen.

At war with Great Britain loomed, Woodford was a delegate to the Third Virginia Convention, and there was appointed colonel in command of the 2nd Virginia Regiment. He drove the royal governor, Lord Dunmore from the Norfolk peninsula after the Battle of Great Bridge on December 9, 1775, the first significant battle of the Revolution on Virginia soil.

Woodford was promoted to brigadier general in February 1777. He was wounded later that year at the Battle of Brandywine, where he and his troops performed well. In 1778 he led his brigade at the Battle of Monmouth where he took control of Comb's Hill and with artillery was able to pound the British left flank.. In late 1779 he and his brigade were sent to join the Southern army, only to be captured at the Siege of Charleston in 1780. He was sent to New York, where he died on board a British prison ship later that year. He was buried at Trinity Church, New York.

Two counties in the United states were named in his honor: Woodford County, Illinois, and Woodford County, Kentucky.

-------------------- William Woodford was born about 1745, probably in Frederick County, Virginia; and died in Rockingham County, Virginia about 1800. He married Frances "Fanny" Howe in Shenandoah County, Virginia about 1768. Frances was born in Virginia about 1750 and died after 1810.

The first record of this family is the baptism of their children in Beckford Parish, Dunsmore County, Virginia (Now Shenandoah County) Virginia August 3, 1773.

William enlisted in the 8th Virginia Regiment of the Continental Line in February 1776. His National Archive military records indicate that he probably contracted malaria in the campaign in the Carolinas. He was at Brandywine, Germantown, White Marsh and Valley Forge.

Chileren of William Woodford and Frances "Fanny" Howe:

(1). William Woodford, b.1769 d. 1833 m.Hannah Moss November 6, 1795.

(2). Sarah Woodford b.Jan 1773 d.ca. 1840 m.George Fridley December 20, 1791.

(3). Mary Frances "Polly" Woodford b.1776 d.1854 m.George Eurid Lantz May 27, 1795

(4). Frances Woodford b. 1780 d. 1853 m1.Benjamin Brown April 28, 1804.

                                                                     m2.Jacob C. Decker ca 1820.

(5). Gracey Woodford b.ca. 1785 m. Isaac Black Jun 24 1805

(6). Ruhama "Amy" Woodford b.May 11, 1790 d.Jun 13 1844 m.George Irick Jun 21 1808.

William Woodford (October 6, 1734 – November 13, 1780) was an American Revolutionary War general from Virginia.


He was born in Caroline County, Virginia, in a town now known as Woodford. He served in the French and Indian War as an Ensign in Colonel George Washington's Virginia Regiment, and was promoted to Lieutenant in 1761. During that year he served in the Cherokee expedition under William Byrd and Adam Stephen.


As war with Great Britain loomed, Woodford was a delegate to the Third Virginia Convention, and there was appointed Colonel in command of the 2nd Virginia Regiment. He drove the royal governor, Lord Dunmore from the Norfolk peninsula after the Battle of Great Bridge on December 9, 1775, the first significant battle of the Revolution on Virginia soil.


Woodford was promoted to Brigadier General in February 1777. He was wounded later that year at the Battle of Brandywine, where he and his troops performed well. In 1778 he led his Brigade at the Battle of Monmouth where he took control of Comb's Hill and with artillery was able to pound the British left flank. In late 1779 he and his brigade were sent to join the Southern Army, only to be captured at the Siege of Charleston in 1780. He was sent to New York, where he died on board a British prison ship later that year. He was buried at Trinity Church, New York.


Two counties in the United states were named in his honor: Woodford County, Illinois, and Woodford County, Kentucky.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

When the French threatened to take over Virginia lands in the Ohio Valley, the royal governor sent young George Washington to the frontier to hold back the French and marauding Indians.

This incredibly small band of militia was ordered to defend the frontier. With this force, was a unit from Caroline commanded by William Woodford.

Woodford was raised in an atmosphere of culture and refinement at his father's estate in Caroline, known as Windsor.. His father had been one of Governor Spotswood's Knights Of the Golden Horseshoe. His ancestors had been distinguished soldiers in the British Army and he had inherited a love of military life.

Woodford had been with Washington earlier with another small force which had attempted to block the French at Ft. Necessity. His bravery on that campaign was the beginning of one of the most brilliant military careers in the history of Virginia.

Only two years younger than Washington, Woodford's considerable abilities were noticed by his senior officer. They enjoyed a close association with Woodford becoming one of Washington's most trusted officers.

After the end of the French and Indian War, the colony began to experience trouble with the Cherokee Indians. After fighting failed to bring about a satisfactory conclusion, Woodford was sent to into the disputed area. Through negotiation and working with pioneer scouts, he managed to reach the Cherokee headquarters, where after much difficulty, he persuaded a party of braves to accompany him to Williamsburg to talk to the royal governor. This established a peace in Virginia which lasted over a decade.

At the beginning of the war with Great Britain, Virginia troops assembled in Williamsburg. Woodford, who was then a colonel, was ordered to take command of the Second Regiment. With the gathering of the troops in Williamsburg, the royal governor, Dunmore fled to the area of Norfolk. Woodford's first mission was to drive Dunmore from the Norfolk peninsula.

His assignment was critical because it was there Dunmore awaited British reinforcements by sea. The fort the governor occupied was at Great Bridge the only overland route to Norfolk. The fort was heavily armed with cannon and the Virginians had no artillery. Woodford was afraid to attack the front of the fort so he placed his troops behind breastworks and laid in for a siege.

Under cover of night. Dunmore began to send troops along the narrow bridge which connected the fort to the mainland in an attempt to surprise the Virginians. Under Woodford's orders, the colonists opened fire in the direction of the bridge. The redcoats were cut down and their bodies fell into the dismal swamp on either side of the narrow gangplank.

This was the first battle of the Revolution to be fought on Virginia soil. Governor Dunmore retired his forces by sea leaving the route to Norfolk open. Woodford proved himself to be a humanitarian while occupying Norfolk. He made no attempt to disturb the British warships at anchor only a short distance from shore. He allowed the wives and children of the Tories, who had fled to the ships to come to shore, to escape the unbearable living conditions on board the ships.

At the battle of Brandywine, in 1777, Woodford was severely wounded. He recovered and returned to the field only to be captured at the siege of Charleston. He was taken on board a British war ship and sent to New York where he died in captivity in 1780. He was buried there in Trinity Church yard in Lower Manhattan.

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Brig.Gen. William Woodford's Timeline

1734
October 6, 1734
Caroline County, Virginia, USA
1763
July 23, 1763
Age 28
1763
Age 28
1769
1769
Age 34
Dunsmore, Beckford , Virgina, USA
1780
November 13, 1780
Age 46
New York, New York, USA
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