Daniel Boone (November 2, 1734-September 26, 1820), was a famous United States pioneer and frontiersman who blazed the Wilderness Road and founded Boonesborough, Kentucky (also known as Boonesboro).
Family and early life
Daniel was born to Squire Boone (November 25, 1696 - January 2, 1765) and Sarah Jarman Morgan (1700 - 1777) in Birdsboro, Pennsylvania. His father was born to a family of Quakers in Devonshire, England. Squire Boone immigrated to Pennsylvania in early 1713 along with his older siblings George Boone and Sarah Boone. The rest of the family joined them on September 19 (old style)/, September 30 (new style,1717.
Squire at first settled in Abington Township, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania but then moved to Lower Gwynedd Township, Pennsylvania. There he met Sarah Morgan, daughter to a family of Quakers from Wales. They married on October 4, 1720.
The couple eventually moved to Chalfont, Bucks County, Pennsylvania. By 1730, they were able to purchase their own 250 acres (1 km²) of land in Homestead, Pennsylvania.
Squire Boone and Sarah Morgan had a total of twelve children:
- Sarah Cassandra Boone (June 7, 1724 - 1815).
- Israel Boone (May 20, 1726 - June 26, 1756).
- Samuel J. Boone (May 20, 1728 - 1814).
- John Jonathon Morgan Boone (December 6, 1730 - 1808).
- Elizabeth Boone (February 5, 1733 - February 25, 1825).
- Daniel Boone.
- Jacob Boone (1735 - 1780).
- Mary Boone (November 3, 1736 - July 6, 1819).
- George Boone (January 2, 1739 - November 12, 1820).
- Edward Boone (November 19, 1740 - October 6, 1780).
- Squire Boone, Jr. (October 5, 1744 - August 15, 1815).
- Hannah Boone (August 12, 1746 - June 28, 1828).
Daniel received little formal education. Although Daniel was literate, his spelling and grammar were always rather crude. He is presumed to have been trained as a farmer, blacksmith and weaver.
On December 31, 1747, Israel Boone married Mary S. Wharton who was not herself a Quaker. The marriage was allowed by Squire Boone himself. This was a scandal for the local Quaker community who called the Boones to repentance. Squire continued to support the marriage. As a result the Quakers severed ties with the Boones in 1748.
Squire Boone and his family left Pennsylvania in 1750 to eventually settle in Yadkin Valley of North Carolina. In 1756, Daniel married Rebecca Bryan, a neighbor in the Yadkin Valley. He fathered 10 children with her. Boone fought the Indians and British during the American Revolutionary War, served in the Virginia Legislature (Virginia encompassed Kentucky at that time) and explored much of the Kentucky and Tennessee regions of the American colonies.
In 1769 Boone blazed the first known trail from North Carolina to Tennessee. Boone spent the next two years hunting and exploring in Kentucky, where he was captured twice by Indians and escaped both times.
In 1773, Boone attempted to settle in Kentucky but an Indian attack resulted in the death of his oldest son James.
Two years later he succeeded in founding Boonesborough (near Lexington, Kentucky), the first settlement of Transylvania. Continued fighting with the Shawnee and the British resulted in the loss of his second oldest son Israel during one of the last battles of the American Revolutionary War, the Battle of Blue Licks.
Boone lost most of his land claims in Kentucky due to faulty titles.
Taxes and creditors forced him out of Kentucky and in 1788 Boone settled at Point Pleasant on the Ohio River in what is now West Virginia.
His son Daniel Morgan Boone met with the Spanish lieutenant governor Don Z.Trudeau in 1798 and was invited to settle the Boone family in Missouri.
Two years later Boone was appointed "syndic" (judge and jury) and commandant of the Femme Osage region.
Rebecca died in 1813 and Daniel Boone died at his home in Defiance, Missouri .
Several places claim to be the burial site of Daniel Boone. Among these are:
- Frankfort cemetery in Frankfort, Kentucky.
- The Old Bryan Farm, Marthasville, Warren County, Missouri.
Many anecdotes of Boone folklore are recorded:
- His rifle was a Kentucky Long Rifle he named "Tick-Licker".
- He wore a coonskin hat and buckskin clothes with fringed leather trim.
- He never admitted to being lost; however, he once reported that he was "confused for several weeks."
- He was captured by the Chief Black Fish of the Shawnee, but escaped when he learned of a British and Indian plot to attack Boonesborough.
- He rallied the settlers and successfully repelled a 10 day siege of Boonesborough.
- When he first met his wife Rebecca, he thought she was a deer in the dark woods, but couldn't shoot her because he never saw a deer with blue eyes before. He tracked her to her home and was smitten when he saw her. He continued to follow her around until she consented to marry him.
- He claimed he once killed a Yahoo, a hairy giant.
The publication of The Adventures of Colonel Daniel Boon in 1784 by John Filson immortalized Boone the frontiersman as an American legend and a true folk hero.
The name Daniel Boone was used by a UK pop singer during the early 1970s, recording on Penny Farthing Records and achieving a worldwide hit with "Hi, Hi, Hi, Beautiful Sunday."
He is an alleged eighth-generation descedant of Sir John de Bohun III (born ca. 1433) and his wife Avelina de Ros, daughter of Robert de Ros, 1st Baron de Ros and Isabel D'Albini.
He is an alleged seventh-generation descedant of an elder Geoffrey Bohn (1450 - May 7, 1472) and his wife Petrolina de Arderne.
He is an alleged sixth-generation descedant of Geoffrey Bohn II (1471 - 1530) and Anne Magerly, daughter of Piers Magerly.
He is considered a probable fifth-generation descedant of Gregory Bohun (1517 - 1589) and Constance Comyn. Gregory was born in Gwynned and was reportedly vassal to an Earl of Devon.
His paternal great-great-grandparents were George Boone I (c. 1625 - 1701 and Ann Fallace (c. 1615 - 1709). Ann was daughter to a Walter Fallace. George has been suggested as a descedant of the Bohun family.
His paternal great-grandparents were George Boone II (November 17, 1646 - 1706) and Sarah Mary Uppey (c. 1640 - 1720). George II was a blacksmith.
His paternal grandparents were George Boone III (1666 - 1744) and Mary Milton Maugridge (1669 - 1740). They were parents to nine children. George III was a weaver.
His alleged maternal great-great-grandfather Edward Morgan, 2nd Baronet Of Llantarnam was son to William Morgan, 1st Baronet Of Llantarnam and Lady Frances Somerset, a reported third daughter of Edward Somerset, 4th Earl of Worcester and Elizabeth Hastings .
His alleged maternal great-grandfather James Morgan, 4th Baronet Of Llantarnam was son to Edward Morgan, 2nd Baronet Of Llantarnam (1562 - June 24, 1653) and Mary Dorothy Englefield , daughter of Baronet Francis Englefield and Jane Browne.
His maternal grandparents were Edward Morgan and Elizabeth Jarman. Edward has been suspected as a (probably illegitimate) son of Sir James Morgan, 4th Baronet Of Llantarnam . Sir James is otherwise known to have died with no legitimate descedants. His title became forfeit following his death. Elizabeth was probably daughter to John Jarman, a Welsh Quaker and early settler of Pennsylvania.