Martha (Draper) Davidson

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Martha (Draper) Davidson's Geni Profile

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Martha Davidson (Draper)

Birthdate: (76)
Birthplace: Orange County, VA, United States
Death: 1805 (76)
Virginia, United States
Place of Burial: United States
Immediate Family:

Daughter of George Draper; George Draper; Eleanor (Esther) Draper and Eleanor Esther Hardin
Wife of John Goolman "Cooper" Davidson
Mother of Martha Phoebe Peery; William Davidson; Andrew Davidson; Nancy Davidson; Col. Joseph Davidson and 8 others
Sister of John Draper, Sr.; Mary Ingles and Jane Draper

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Martha (Draper) Davidson

Note from John D. Curtis:

Martha was a pioneer woman who lived on the edge of civilization in Colonial Virginia near the crest of the Appalachian Mountains. Martha's mother, Elenor Hardin Draper, was killed by Shawnee Indians during the Draper's Meadow Massacre in 1755. This was about 5 miles away from Martha's own home.

During the raid, Martha's sister Mary Draper Ingles was captured and taken away. After 2 1/2 months, Mary escaped and made her way back through the wilderness on foot. Had Mary been able to travel by canoe and pony, the trip back would have been around 600 miles. However, she made the trip by foot. With no boat to cross the rivers, she had to walk upstream to find shallow spots to cross. So the overall trip could have been as much as 1,000 miles. Her shoes wore out on the way and she continued on barefoot. She nearly starved to death during the long trip, and looked like a walking skeleton when she reached the first outpost of civilization near her former burned-down home. She lost most of her clothes to the brambles and tree branches in the wilderness, and she was nearly naked by the end of the trip. As a result she almost froze to death in the late fall and early winter weather. But she survived the trip home. She was young woman of 23 at the time, athletic and strong. As a result, she went on to make a full recovery.

Her ordeal was memorialized in the 1981 novel "Follow the River". Later an ABC movie of the same name was produced and released in 1995.

After the Massacre, Draper's Meadow was abandoned.

Nearly 40 years later, in 1793, Martha's husband (John Goolman Davidson) was also killed by Indians near Rocky Gap, Virginia while on a business trip.

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Martha (Draper) Davidson's Timeline

1729
1729
Orange County, VA, United States
1756
1756
Age 27
1757
July 12, 1757
Age 28
Augusta County, Province of Virginia
1757
Age 28
1757
Age 28
1759
March 17, 1759
Age 30
Tazewell, VA, USA
1759
Age 30
Tazewell, Tazewell County, Virginia, United States
1759
Age 30
1760
1760
Age 31
Rocky Gap, Bland, Virginia, United States