Moses Shelby, Sr. (1728 - 1776)

‹ Back to Shelby surname

Is your surname Shelby?

Research the Shelby family

Moses Shelby, Sr.'s Geni Profile

Share your family tree and photos with the people you know and love

  • Build your family tree online
  • Share photos and videos
  • Smart Matching™ technology
  • Free!


Birthplace: Tregaron, Cardiganshire, Wales
Death: Died in Mecklenburg, NC, USA
Managed by: Lila Buck Volner
Last Updated:

About Moses Shelby, Sr.

A Patriot of the American Revolution for NORTH CAROLINA. DAR Ancestor # A102480 Moses Shelby was born 05 May 1728 in Tregaron, Cardiganshire, Wales, and died 13 Oct 1776 in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. He married Isabel Alexander, daughter of William Alexander and Agnes Alexander. She probably died in 1780 in Cabarrus County, North Carolina.

On May 4, 1744, his father, Evan, turned over to Moses a fifty-acre parcel of land called "Hunt's Cabin," located a short distance from the right bank of Licking Creek about eight or nine miles southwest of Evan’s home, Maiden's Choice, which places it in present day Washington County, Maryland. However, about 1760, Moses and his family joined the great exodus to the south, going to South Carolina. The slight information we have on this move indicates that they may have settled near the sea coast below the Santee River, near Charleston. Whether Moses found the climate or the soil of South Carolina unsuitable, was offered better inducements, or what, we don’t know but we do know that two years later, on June 2 1762, he bought a sizeable piece of land on "the waters of Clear Creek," a branch of Rocky River, in Anson County, North Carolina. His sister, Mary, and her husband, Adam Alexander, had already relocated to this area.

The North Carolina Colonial Records show that Moses was a member of the Mecklenburg Militia under his brother-in-law, Colonel Adam Alexander. Moses' will was dated September 2, 1776. It was a common practice for soldiers going into war to prepare a will before they left. But, although Moses is listed as a patriot by the Daughters of the Revolution, he did not see much action in the war. He died in October of 1776. His will was probated in January of 1777.

At a meeting of the Inferior Court on the third Thursday of January A.D. 1777 and in the first year of American Independence . . . The last Will and Testament of Moses Shelby, deceased, was proved in open court by the oath of James Harris, one of the subscribing witnesses.

I give to my dear and beloved wife during her widowhood this house wherein I now live, together with all the furniture and lands and tenements that lay about it, except such furniture as hereafter mentioned. I also give to my loving wife five work creatures and eight milch cows and calves - together with two plows and tackling and all my plantation tools for the benefit of my wife and six youngest children.

Item: When my hereafter named Executors come to cancel my book debts, bonds and notes and find their value, they are then to make an equal dividend betwixt my wife and six youngest children and also the money arising from a vandue made, to be divided in the same manner except 25 pounds I will allow to my loving wife the better to enable her to school the six youngest children.

Item: The two oldest Negroes, Rince and Fillis I order and will to remain on the plantation for the better support of my wife and six youngest children and if any issue by either of the two wenches after what has been mentioned I order and will one to each of my four youngest daughters. The first to Catherine and so on.

Item: I will and bequeath to my loving wife one Negro wench named Sude, her lifetime and then to give her to whom she will of my family.

The court minutes in Mecklenburg, over the next several years, contain many references to the “orphans” of Moses Shelby. It is not known for sure what happened to Isabel after Moses’ death. Some think she followed him in death in 1780. However, there is an interesting entry in the court records of nearby Cabarrus County that states: "The last Will of testament of Isable Craton was proved in Apr Court by the Oath of E. Speiars. . . .Isable CRATAIN dec'd. Daughter, Mary WILEY, bequeathed a woman slave, was to be sold after being valued by Robert COCHRAN.” Moses’ and Isabel’s oldest daughter, Mary, married Oliver Wiley so it is quite possible that the Isabel Craton that is mentioned is the widow of Moses Shelby.

Baptized in St. Carson's church Tregaron, Wales in 1728.

Married Isabel in Maryland

1760: migrated to South Carolina

June, 1762: moved up to a tract of land on Clear Creek, a branch of Rocky River in what is now Cabarrus County, NC

This is where he died in 1776-7.


Soldier and patriot of the American Revolutionary War.

view all 15

Moses Shelby, Sr.'s Timeline

May 5, 1728
Tregaron, Cardiganshire, Wales
Age 15
Prince George Cty MD
Age 17
Frederick, MD, United States
Age 19
Hagerstown, Frederick, MD, United States
Age 23
Age 26
Age 31
Age 33
South Carolina
Age 34