"Our Loose Ends" Genealogy Column
by Lynna Kay Shuffield
Houston, Texas

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Printed in the Taylor Daily Press - 6 July 2000

“The Patriot” has a Connection to Central Texas

Mel Gibson’s newest movie, “THE PATRIOT” has a connection to Milam County, Texas! I’m sure you are asking yourself, “Gee, how can that be?”

Gibson portrays, Benjamin Martin, a character based on various patriots who fought in the American Revolution, including Francis Marion, who is better known as the "Swamp Fox."

Francis Marion was a guerrilla fighter from the wetlands area of South Carolina, which includes the Barnwell District (now known as Barnwell County). Two of the men who fought along side of Marion were John Cave and Tarlton Brown.

John Cave was born about 1757 in Orange or Albemarle Co., VA and died before March 1812 in the Barnwell District, SC. John married Sarah Wilson Brown, sister of Tarlton Brown and daughter of William Brown and Sarah Jennings Brown.

As the family story goes, John Cave preferred to farm and was not involved in the fight for Independence. That is until the British attacked the home of William Brown and killed 14 members of the family, leaving John Cave for dead.

Soon after the attack on the family, John Cave joined with his brother-in-law, Tarlton who was already fighting with Marion against the British.

Members of the Carver, Clark, Clendennen, Griffin, Hairston, Hurt, and Knight families of Milam County descend from John Cave, the Patriot, through his grandson, Henry W. Cave who was born about 1800 in the Barnwell District, SC and died in 1862 in Milam County, Texas. Henry is buried in the Hurt-Graham Cemetery in Milano, Texas.

The oldest living descendant of John Cave in Milam County is Jewel Carver Clark, age 97, who resides in Rockdale, Texas. She is the great-granddaughter of Henry W. Cave and his wife Nancy Bass Cave. Her grandmother was Martha Cave who first married James S. Knight and after his death, married second to John T. Carver.

There are several historical monuments in Barnwell County, SC to honor both Tarlton Brown and John Cave. There is even a highway in South Carolina, which is named for Tarlton. For information on Barnwell County, SC contact the: Aiken-Barnwell County Genealogy Society of South Carolina, P. O. Box 415, Aiken, SC 29802 or visit the website: http://www.ifx.net/~lhutto/page2.html.

To learn more about the Cave/Brown Family and their important role in the American Revolution, you can read: “Barnwell's Tarlton Brown: Patriarch of a Civilization, Documents Related, and Revolutionary Memoirs” by Joyce S. O’Bannon which is available at the Texas State Library & Archives in Austin, Texas or “Memoirs of Tarleton Brown: A Captain in the Revolutionary Army” by Tarleton Brown and recently re-published in 1999 by the Barnwell County Museum and Historical Board. You can visit the website “Cave Cove” operated by Rick Anderson at: http://members.aol.com/CavesCove/CavesCove.htm to learn more about the history and genealogy of this family.

An additional source of information on these two families is the “Manning Collection, Barnwell County, South Carolina records, 1717-1965.” The South Carolina Dept. of Archives & History, P. O. BOX 11669, Capitol Station, Columbia, SC 29211-1669 has duplicated this 15-volume manuscript onto microfilm. You can borrow copies of these microfilms through any LDS Family History Center (FHL US Film #1841506 through #1841511).

There are a considerable number of similarities between the history of the Cave and Brown families and the characters in the movie, “The Patriot.” Enjoy the movie, think about your family history and remember these brave men and women who fought for our Independence. For information about the movie, visit the website at: http://www.thepatriot.com.

For information on membership in the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution write: National Society SAR, 1000 S. 4th St., Louisville, KY 40203, telephone: (502) 589-1776, e-mail: execdir@sar.org or visit the website: http://www.sar.org/.

For information on membership in the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution write: NSDAR, 1776 D. Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20006-5303, telephone: (202) 628-1776, or visit the website: http://www.dar.org/.

Internet Hint - Search California Birth & Death Indexes

Have members of your family resided in California? If so, you will be excited to learn that the California State Vital Records Office allowed RootsWeb to place on-line searchable databases for their birth and death indexes.

The birth index located at: http://userdb.rootsweb.com/ca/birth/search.cgi contains 2,459,236 records and covers the time-period 1905 to 1995.

The death index located at http://userdb.rootsweb.com/ca/death/search.cgi contains 9,366,786 records and covers the time-period 1940 to 1995. For a list of all searchable databases at RootsWeb go to: http://searches.rootsweb.com/.

In this column, I will be glad to highlight and review any family history, genealogy, county history, or similar book, free of charge, if you donate a copy of the book or item. After it has been highlighted and reviewed, on a space available basis, it will be donated to the genealogy section of a library. You will receive an acknowledgment of the donation from the library. Mail item or book to me at the below address.

Lynna Kay Shuffield has written several books related to Texas genealogy and military history. She has spoken before numerous genealogy and veterans groups. Also, is a County Coordinator for the Texas GenWeb Project. Regretfully, she cannot help with individual genealogical research. Please visit the website for this column at: http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Academy/2670/ COLUMN-001.htm or if you have any questions, comments, suggestions for column topics, genealogy or historical society announcements, please contact her at: P. O. Box 16604, Houston, Texas 77222-6604 or e-mail: lksfriday@sbcglobal.net

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This webpage was last created on 25 Jun 2000 and was last revised on ________ 2000

Copyright © 1999, 2000 Lynna Kay Shuffield - All rights reserved.
P. O. Box 16604
Houston, Texas 77222-6604