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State of Tennessee

Bledsoe County


            On the 11th day of August 1834 personally appeared in open court before this county clerk, of this county aforesaid, now sitting, John Daffron, a resident of Bledsoe County State of Tennessee, aged 73 years  after being first duly sworn according to law doth on his oath make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the act of congress ___ June 7th 1832.


That he entered the service of the United States under the following  named officers and served as herein stated.  In Chatham County State of North Carolina he volunteered and entered the service under Captain ____ Cages and was ______ at ______ __ the barracks in Chatham County, commonly called Lettrells Barracks.  They were on Col Lettrells land and applicant believes were commanded by him.    Applicant does not remember the year - he recollects that it was not a great while before there was a battle with the enemy at Lindley's Mill, in which Col LIttrell was killed.   This tour applicant served, he knows at least two months - he is well satisfied  it was more, but cannot state the précis period from lap of memory.  Very soon after leaving the barrack in Chatham, County, applicant believes in about two weeks he again volunteered and joined the Light horse in Randolph County , under the command of Captain Edward Williams (then called Ned Williams)  Captain Aaron Hill who also commanded a company of Light Horse lived in the same neighborhood, and the two companies generally went together.  Alex Patterson was lieutenant in Capt Williams company.  Applicant was attached to this company for about two years as a private and a volunteer.   Most of that time he was in actual service for in the section of county where applicant resided, the  ______ was so bad that it was unsafe to remain out of camp.   He cannot state the precise time he was in service, but is confident and certain that it was not before those  _____ months in the light horse.  Applicant was not in any engagement with the enemy.  The company which he was in was generally engaged in covering the country and keeping the Tories in subjection?   Col James Dugan and Maj. Thomas Dugan, who were brothers were applicant’s superior officers in Randolph County.  Applicant recollects substituting   to serve  in place of a certain John Grice who was drafted and having his name put on the roll in Captain Wm Cole’s company.  In Rowan county but before the company marched peace was proclaimed.   Applicant state that his memory from age or other causes is remarkably defective and weak-  He has detailed his services as will as he can, but cannot remember dates- he never received any written discharge from the service nor did he ever want any that he recollects.  All he remember was performed as a private in the militia.  He was much longer attached to companies and __  __  ___ to act but is confident that his actual service was not less than fourteen months as before stated.  He thinks it was more, but when he cannot be certain, would rather have it too little than too much.  He has no documentary evidence, nor does he know of any person whose testimony   he can procure, who can testify to his service. 


He hereby relinquishes every claim whatsoever to a pension or annuity except the present and declares that his name is not on the pension roll of this Agency in any state.


He was born in Fairfax county, Virginia from the best information he can get, in the year 1760 or 1761.  he is altogether illiterate , and has no record of his age.  He was living “when called into the service” in Randolph County, N. Carolina.   Many years after the revolutionary war he moved from there to Spartanburg . _______ in S. Carolina where he lived, about thirties years from there he moved to Jefferson County, Tennessee where he lived one year, and from there he moved to this Bledsoe County, Tennessee, where he has lived for five years. – he then moved back to Jefferson county, where he lived four years – and then back to this Bledsoe county, where he has lived for about eight years, and where he still resides.


He enlisted and was in the service as a volunteer.


He has stated the names of his officers, and the general circumstances of his service as well as he can recollect them,


He never received a written discharge that he remembers.


He is known in his present neighborhood to Samuel Cathey and John Carter who can testify as to his character for vivacity and their belief as to his services as a soldier of the revolution.  There is but one clergyman living, in the neighborhood of applicant and he is prevented from coming to court by this ________ of his .   Relations of his inform applicant consequently he is unable to procure the certification  of a clergyman as required by the regulations.


Sworn to _____ this day and year aforesaid                                    John   X  Daffron




We Samuel Cathey & John Carter residing in Bledsoe county Tennessee and in the neighborhood of the above



****The document ends here.****


He has (2) sets of records.  This is the first time he applied for a pension.



Declaration, In order to obtain the benefit of the Act of Congress passed June 7th, 1832.


State of Tennessee

Jefferson County 


On this 1st day of December 1845 personally appeared, before this court of Jefferson County  (a whole line is marked through) John Daffron, a resident of Jefferson County

And states aforesaid  age Ninety Three years old.  Who being first duly sworn according to law doth on his oath seeks the following declaration, in order to obtain the benefit of the Act of Congress passed June 7, 1832.   That he entered the service of the United States under the following named officers and served as hereas stated.  That he served as a volunteer three months under Captain Cages, and Col. John Litterel in Chatham County, North Carolina at the company barracks.  When Col. Litterel got killed the army ___  ____, he then went to Randolph County and volunteered under Captain Ned Williams of the Light Horse.  Col James Doogan and Colonel  Taylor marching through Randolph County into Moore County serving Two months and then peace was made.  The three months service above mentioned was in the infantry.  ___ the dates his recollection does not ____ him and that he has no documentary evidence and that he knows of no persons whose testimony he can procure who can testify to his service.  He further states that the reason why his application was not ____ ____ was that his papers were prepared by Judge Pock ____ L Dawbridge?(not sure of this)  and that the Public Houses at which the Judge __  __ was burnt up, and the paper destroyed and that from his infirmity he neglected to have ____ those __ _____ the present time.


He hereby relinquishes every claim whatever to a pension or annuity except the present and declares that his name is not on the pension roll of the aging of any other State.

Sworn to and submitted

The day and year aforesaid

James _____ Clerk                                                                his

Of Jefferson County                                                 John   X  Daffron




We Samuel Rollens ______ residing in the County of Jefferson and John Mitchel residing in the County of Jefferson County certify that we are well acquainted with John Daffron who has subscribed to and sworn to the above declaration.  That we believe him to be ninety  three years old.   That he is respected and   believed in the neighborhood where he resides to have been a soldier of the Revolutionary War.  That we ____ in that ________, John Mitchel further states that he has herein said Daffron, states that he serviced in the Revolutionary War, more than thirty years ago.

Sworn to and submitted

The 1st day of December 1845                            Samuel R Miller

James  _____ Clerk                                                    John Mitchel

Of Jefferson County



Interrogatories _____ by the Court


  1. Where and in what year where you born?


I was born in Fairfax County, Virginia the year not recollected.  I was of twenty four years of age at the close of the war.  As I have always understood.


  1. Have you any record of your age, and if so where is it?


I have none, Neither do I know where it is


  1. Where were you living when called into service.  Where have you lived sicne the Revolutionary War and where do you now live?


I was living in Randolph County, North Carolina ___ ____ of War.  I have lived part     of my time in North Carolina and part in South Carolina and am now living in Jefferson County.


  1. How were you called into service?


I volunteered.


  1. Did you ever receive a discharge from the services and if so by whom was it given and what become of it?


I have no recollection of ever receiving a discharge if one was given I do not know what has become of it.


  1. State the names of some of the regular officers who where with the troops when you served, such Continental and militia regiments as you can recollect and the general circumstances of your services.


  I recollect officers from what I have accounted.


  7.  State the names of persons to whom you are known in your present

       neighborhood and who can testify as to your character for

      veracity and their belief of your services as a Soldier of the  Revolution.


      Hon Samuel R Miller and John Mitchel



The rest of the papers deal with Sarah Dafforn's application for widow benifits.

State of Georgia  }

Walker County  }

                                                                On this the 6th day of December 1851 Personally appeared before me the Subscriber a Justice of the Inferior Court in and for said County Sarah Dafforn a resident of the County and State aforesaid aged eighty eight (88) years. Who being first duly sworn according to law doth on her oath make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the provision made by the act of congress passed July 4th 1836.

 That she is the widow of John Dafforn who was a private soldier in the war of the revolution    That the said John Dafforn resided in North Carolina at the time of the commencement of said war and was drafted she thinks in 1778 and served in the militia of said state under the command of Col. Litral and Capt . Mayborn until these officers were killed by the Torries . That soon after this her said husband was taken prisoner by Col. Fanning the noted Tory. That he made his escape from Fanning and volunteered and served as a light horseman under the command of Capt. ?? Williams and she thinks at different times under the command of each of the following Officers, to wit, Col. Belford, Capt Aaron Hill and Capt. John Night, That she this deponent lived during the war in Randolph County North Carolina and was acquainted with the said John Dafforn while he was in service  That she was married to him in the summer of 1781 seventeen hundred and eight one, by publication in the County and State last above written by a Baptist preacher of the name of Richard Shacelford  That she has no documentary evidence of her marriage to the said John Dafforn as stated above, having no family record, and knows of no person living who can of their own knowledge testify to the fact. And this deponent further declares that the said John Dafforn soon after her marriage to him as stated above, again entered the service as horseman and continued in the same a greater part of the  time until the cecession of hostilities That she has no documentary proof of her husband's services as stated above as his discharges cannot be found, that she recollects to have heard him say that said discharges were in the possession of John Grist a man who was with him in service and who has now been a long time dead. She further declairs that her first child, Joseph Dafforn was born in the summer of 1782. She recollects that while this child was an infant the news of peace caused great rejoicing in the country. She further declairs that she and her husband resided in Randolph County for twelve or fifteen years after peace was made, then moved to Spartenburg District South Carolina where they remained until 1816. That they moved to Jefferson County State of Tennessee. That she thinks her said husband made so me effort to get a pension while living there, but does not know whether his declaration was filed or not but knows he did not obtain a pension, that they lived in Jefferson County Tennessee until the death of her husband John Daffron which occurred on the 18th day of August 1849 leaving this deponent a widow, that soon after this she moved to Walker County Georgia where she still lives the widow of John Daffron all of which will more fully appear from the following proof.


Sarah  X  Daffron


Sworn to and subscribed the day and year above written and I further certify that Sarah Daffron is a credible person and unable from bodily infirmity to appear in open court . In testimony whereof I do set my hand & seal. A.L. Barry


State of Georgia  }

Walker County   }

Be it known that on this the 8th day of December 1851 before me the undersigned a Justice of the Peace in and for the County above written personally appeared Joseph Dafforn a resident of the County and State aforesaid a person whose statements are entitled to full credit aged (69) sixty nine years who after being first duly sworn according to law doth on his oath make the following statements.

That he is the oldest child of John Dafforn deceased and Sarah Dafforn who now claims a pension for the revolutionary services of the said John Dafforn that at his earliest recollection he was living with his said parents in Randolph County North Carolina, That they remained in Randolph County until about the year 1795 that they then removed to Spartinburg District South Carolina that they remained there until about the year 1816 when his said parents removed to Jefferson County state of Tennessee, but that he this deponent still lived in South Carolina until the year 1833 when he moved to Walker County Georgia, That his said parents lived in Jefferson County Tennessee until the death of his father the said John Dafforn which occurred on the 18th day of August 1849 That his mother the said Sarah Dafforn then moved to Walker County Georgia where she still lives a widow.   This deponent further  declairs that he has always understood that his father was first a drafted soldier and served in the militia.   That he afterwards volunteered  and served as a horseman.  That he believes his father was faithful soldier for three years of more. That he believes this because he repeatedly heard him speak of said service and often heard others speak of being in service with him. He further declairs that he believes his parents were legally married in 1781 That they always lived peaceable together as husband and wife and that he never heard their marriage as stated above questioned or contradicted.


Joseph Daffron

Sworn to and subscribed this day and year above written before me I further certify that the deponent Joseph Dafforn is a respectable man and is apparently as old as he represents himself to be. In testimony whereof do hereunto affix my official signature.

Geo Brigman J.P.



Aug 8, 2007

The letter below was found recently  in with John Daffron's pension records by Susan Holmes Burns and translated by myself Jennie Turner-Talley. I used the spelling of the writer.  There was no date,

To The Commisioners of Pensions

Washington City, D.C.


There is an old Lady living near me who is 101 years old the 8th Day of Last October who we think from her statements is entittled to a pension from the Government for Service Rendered by her Housband in the Revolutionary War. Her housband was by the name of John Difforn. She states that her Housband first volintered under the command of Col Colyer comanding a company of Volinturs in the State of North Carolina and served 3 months under his command that he then served a tourer under the command of Col Belford of N.C. that Capt. John Knight of N.C. was the Captain in command a part of the time that Captain Aaron Hill commanded a part of the time and that Captain Edward Williams was in command an other portion of the time and that her Housband was taken prisoner by one Thomas Fannin a leader or an officer of the Tories and remained with him some considerable time when he made good his escape and joined the army of Col. Litteral of the whiggs and remained with him in the service of this country till the close of the War this service was all performed in the State of North Carolina during the Revolutionary War. and the ofject of the writer of this communication is to apertain whether or not the mane of John Difforn does not appear on the pension list as serving as a Soldier under the command of some or all of the officers before mentioned of the NOrth Carolina Redgement and if this name does so appear there to assertain whether this said John Differon has ever drawn any Pension or no This is a worthy old Lady stands high in the estimatin of the Babtist Chuch and all who has ever known her and She is verry Poor and needy and it is the unanimus belief of all who has ever known her that She is intittled to a Pension from the Government for her self and Housband if her case was rightly presented with the proof she will be unabled(? inabled) to make

and now the object is in writing this to ask of you to be so kind as to inform me whether or no the name of Her Housband John Difforn does appear on the list of Revolutionary Pensions as having served under either or any of the officers before mintioned in the state of North Carolina and if it does so appear if that name has ever obtained a Pension (2 marks I can't make out)

In this inquiry Gentlemen I am seeking nothing but that true Justice shall appertain. She is certainly a worthy old Lady and if her Housband is or was ever intittled to any thing from the Governmetn she and her children, a fifteen in Number ought to Have it for they are all Kneedy--

You will therefore confer a favor on me ...nu and a debt of grattatude on her and her children by answering the foreging inquiries and giving Some Instructions as what course to persue in the obtainment of her and their Just claims or you will please direst your answer to me at Ringgold Catoosa County Georgia

While I have the (page torn)

to be verry Respectfully y(page torn)


Spencer Riley







The Battle of Lindley's Mill


John Daffron stated he fought at the battle of Lindley’s Mill.  Here is what I found on it.



On an early morning in September of  Loyalist Col. David Fanning raided Hillsborough with six hundred loyalist soldiers.  Thomas Burke of Orange Co. had recently been elected Governor by a Whig Assembly and the third Whig Governor of North Carolina.  He was the first to be taken prisoner by the British along with several other military and civil officials.  All were aroused from their beds and placed under arrest. These captives were first thrown into the Hillsborough jail while Tories plundered the town. Later that afternoon, Tories began transporting captives to British-occupied Wilmington.


 “RW pensioner William Allen stated in his pension application that the troop for which he belonged was raised for the purpose, as he understood, of marching to join General Green in the high hills at Santee River thence to march into South Carolina to place then call  Ninety Six, now Cambridge, but while at Hillsborough preparing to go on this expedition, the Tories under the command of Fanning and the British under Col McDougan (this should be Col. Hector McNeil) came upon us and took three hundred of us prisoner among whom was Governor Burk. He saw Col. Lytte wounded by a sword in the head by Fanning, this  transaction took place at Hillsborough as above stated on the 4th of Sept. 1781.  That night we remained near Hillsborough and were carried next morning by the British and Tories on to a place called Lindley’s Mill, “


Alexander Mebane  watched from concealment.  He could not reach his horse so he set out on foot through high weeds for Hawfields, his home , to warn the people.


Hawfields was Whigs territory.  General Butler had no problem raising 300 to 350 militia to respond to Mebane’s  warning.


At about 10:00 am the Whigs were waiting on the brow of the hill, above the hollow leading to Hawfields.   Once across Hawfields , Fanning would be in Tory country.  Near Lindley’s Mill the Whigs ambushed the Tory column.  When rifle fire started, the Loyalists escorting the Governor halted. Colonel McNeill called for retreat, but after one his men accused him of cowardice, he reversed his order and called for advance.  He was quickly shot down.  McDougal took his place, urging the men forward.


Colonel Fanning, crossed down creek from the battle  and came up on the rear of the hill, taking the Patriots by surprise.     The battle continued for the next four hours.  Still the Whigs were outnumbered two to one, The battle finally came to an end when the Tories threatened to Assassinate Governor Burke and the captives.  The Tories departed.    

The Whigs lost 24 dead, and 90 seriously wounded. Major John Nalls of Bear Creek was shot towards the end of the battle.  Colonel Lutteral of Haw River was wounded , but managed to stay in his saddle until his horse reached a farm house a ˝ mile from the battle scene. As he lay dying in an upstairs room, he wrote his name in his own blood across the wall. His mark remained there for many years.

The Tories lost 27 dead and 60 seriously wounded.

Col. Fanning was wounded

This battle closed the war in North Carolina.



Others who fought in this Battle.  (Taken from Pension records.)


William Green had to say about the Battle of Lindley's Mill in 1832 in his pension

"Next morning we all marched to the battleground at Lindley's Mill and helped  to bury the dead. Depondent counted 31 dead on the ground, besides several other that were at Lindley's Mill and at the widow Laughlin's. Colonel Literal died at the Coller House. We then pursued Fannin and met a party of British on a bridge called Liviston on a creek who were sent out to cover
Fannin's rear. We engaged this party of about 300 in number and after an engagement of about one quarter of hour we were compelled to retreat. We were commanded at this place by General Butler who overtook us before we reached Livinston Bridge. I then left Captain Grishom and joined Capt. William Douglass and marched back to Orange.




John Petty  - “Served under both Capt Clark and Cholsom.  He recalled being in the battles of Can Creek, N.C. and Lindley’s Mill in 1781”




Captain James Kell  “in the year 1781 he was elected Captain of a Militia Company in Orange County….marched them to Ramsay’s Mill on Deep River where he joined General Butler he marched from there to near Cox’s Iron Works where they remained near two weeks, from there over Haw River  over the Redfield ford where they remained two or three weeks, then marched to intercept Col. Fanning & fought him at Lindley’s Mill.  – After the Battle of Lindley’s Mills marched to Haw River under Col. Mabry and General Butler & continued in that section until the tour expired.”




Benjamin Standifer :  “…entered the service for three months under Captain Abraham Allen who was commanded by Colonel Maybrane, under the command of Brigadier General Butler.  He was marched through Hillsbrorough North Carolina, then across Haw River to Lindley’s Mill were he was in an engagement with the Tories under the command of Colonel O’Neal who was killed.  …from Lindley’s Mill he marched to a place called Cross Creek where the Tories had taken refuge in the swamps, where he wa again discharged after serving three months as orderly sergeant. 

The claimant further states that in the engagement at Lindley’s Mill, Col. Littrell and Major Nolls were killed by Tories.”




Col. John Pyle Sr. & Dr. John Pyle Jr. were both Loyalists during most of the Revolution.  Jr. tended the wounded and dying after the battle of Lindley’s Mill, which was fought in the vicinity of his house.





Matthew Stroud – “was in the battle of Lindley’s Mill”



Samuel Shepherd  - “in battle at Lindley’s Mill”



Henry Howell – “fought at Lindley’s Mill”




Pension Application of William Mitchell



This declarant entered this expedition in Capt. McMullen's company of mounted  gunmen, Col. William Moore's  regiment and Genl. Butler's Division. A day or two  before we got up with Butler a sharp conflict took place between our troops under the Command of Col. Mebane  (who was a regular officer who on being ordered from one place to another had called to see his father who lived in Orange [County] and he took the

command at the request of the troops, the principal field officers Taylor and Butler being absent upon some other duty however they were [?]) and the Tories under Fanning at Lindley's Mill  where some thirty or forty of the Tories were killed and several of our  little force were also killed and wounded. The Tories retreated before our main army  could come up with them. Butler got up within a mile of them one night before he knew

it, when he learned his new position, he became desperately alarmed (for he was a poor officer) and broke up his camp and marched off at right angles from Fanning's route and

continued his forced march all night and until late the next day when we crossed the Cape Fear River at Everett's ford where we encamped several days. Butler then turned our course immediately down the Cape Fear River for Wilmington to Brown's Ferry on Cape Fear River where we crossed over and there encamped two or three days. We received reinforcement of Col. William Moore's Regiment, though our company was known and understood as being part of Moore's Regiment yet it did not join him until we crossed the river at Brown's ferry. Here Butler broke up his camp believing himself strong enough to

cope with Fanning and set out on a forced march to overtake him although Fanning had received a reinforcement of about 300 British soldiers under the command of Major  Craig we overtook him at  __ swamp his declarant's brother Lieut. David Mitchell was officer of the day. The action was brought on under very auspicious circumstances. Butler took another panic supposing Fanning to have artillery and our Soldiers retreat; they have cannon and we cannot stand them and he, Taylor & Moore ran off with all who pursue their flight and but for the ____and disinterested services of Col. Robert Mebane of whom this declarant already spoke the whole army  would have been probably cut to pieces at the swamp. But he rallied one hundred & fifty or two hundred of the troops and put them in order of battle and resisted the pursuit of Fanning who finding that a hard [?] conflict had again ensued supposed that Butler's  whole force had fallen back to that point intentionally and thus he was induced to fall back in his turn and night closed the scene. We then traveled 18 miles before we overtook our field officers; who were encamped in the plantation of Capt. Lucas where  the depleted army encamped several days. We then took up the line of march for home  and when we got in the neighborhood of Fayetteville, then called Cross Creek, this  declarant attached himself to Col. Taylor's Regiment from Granville County who was  then encamped near Fayetteville and in a short time the Col. heard that there was a small detachment of Tories encamped on Little River some 25 or 30 miles off Col. Taylor  determined they should be broke up there and Capt. Kell  (who was then a private) was chosen to conduct the expedition and volunteers were beat up for and some thirty, forty  or fifty volunteered among whom was this declarant; a forced march was made the Tories  were found and just as we were in the act of surrounding them they discovered us and broke for a swamp. We fired on them as they ran and took one of them that we executed  and took the most of their arms and all their horses most of which had been stolen before  from the Whigs and a good deal of plunder. We then returned to camp where this  declarant received ___________.