THE LIFE OF
GENERAL HUGH MERCER
GENERAL HUGH MERCER
With brief sketches of General George Wash
ington, John Paul Jones, General George Weedon,
James Monroe and Mrs. Mary Ball Washington,
who were friends and associates of General Mercer
at Fredericksburg ; also a sketch of Lodge No.
4, A. F. and A. M., of which Generals Washington
and Mercer were members; and a genealogical
table of the Mercer family.
JOHN T. GOOLRICK
NEW YORK & WASHINGTON
THE NEALE PUBLISHING COMPANY
COPTBIQHT, 1906, BY
JOHN T. QOOLRICK
General Hugh Mercer Frontispiece
Hugh Mercer as a country doctor in Pennsylvania. 26
The office and apothecary shop of Hugh Mercer,
Fredericksburg, Va 32
The Quaker Meeting House, Princeton, N. J 52
The battlefield of Princeton 54
The Clark House, Princeton, where Gen l Mercer
The monument to General Hugh Mercer at Fred
ericksburg, Va 68
The grave of General Mercer in Laurel-Hill Ceme
tery, Philadelphia, Pa., monument erected by
St. Andrews Society 70
The Rising Sun Tavern, Fredericksburg, Va 76
Kenmore, at Fredericksburg, where Major Lewis
John Paul Jones 82
"The Sentry Box" the home of Mercer, Fred
ericksburg, Va 88
The home of Mary, the mother of Washington,
Fredericksburg, Va 92
The monument to Mary, the mother of Washington,
Fredericksburg, Va 98
General George Washington as a mason and mem
ber of Lodge No. 4 A. F. and A. M., Fredericks
burg, Va 100
THIS book is affectionately dedicated to
my wife, a great-granddaughter of George
Mason, who was an intimate friend and
associate of General Hugh Mercer.
INTRODUCTION is only necessary to
this Life of Mercer in order to return
thanks to others for what I have herein ob
tained from them, as well as to disclaim
any very marked originality for some
things herein written. For instance, I
could not and do not claim any great origi
nality for the brief description of the
battles of Culloden or of Princeton. Both
have been described so often and by so
many writers, that there is "nothing new
under the sun" to be said about them. I
only introduce them here that I may give
a full and complete history of the life of
Mercer ; without them I could not have done
so. I return thanks and acknowledge my
self under obligations to James D. Law,
Esq., of Germantown, Pa. ; Eev. J. Lindsay
Patton, Ashland, Ya.; Judge Beverly B.
Wellford, Bichmond, Va., and Corbin W.
Mercer, Esq., Bichmond, Va., for some
things that I have embodied in this small
volume, and which appear with quotation
I was constrained to write of General
Hugh Mercer because I thought that such a
life as he lived, and such a death as he died,
should be written about; and should be
written about by some one who is identi
fied with Fredericksburg, the home of Mer
cer. How perfectly or imperfectly I have
performed the task which I have voluntar
ily undertaken, I submit to the charitable
criticism of my readers.
JOHN T. GOOLBICK.
Fredericksburg, Va., March 1, 1906.
THE Highlands of Scotland, land of
brown heath and shaggy wood "land of
the mountain and the flood" has always
been celebrated in song and story. Its
stern and wild mountains, its dark and si
lent glens, its deep-lying lochs beneath the
shadow of the hills, its silent, whirling
mists and sudden storms, are the scenes of
strange romance and ghastly tragedy. It
is a very playground for the novelist s ex
cited imagination and the poet s wildest
fancy. But withal, so barren in soil and
harsh in climate, that the inhabitants of the
Highlands early gave themselves up to the
delights of the chase, or the dangers of the
sea, the pursuit of arms, or the joy of
Picturesque in costume, splendid in mus
cular development, trained in the use of
arms, proud of their race, loyal to their
clan, they boasted their fidelity to their
friends, and that they never turned their
backs to a foe. Restless, inclined to travel,
quick to adapt themselves to new surround-
12 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
ings, the Highlanders of Scotland sought
their fortunes abroad, rising to fame and
wealth in many a Continental country, be
coming the leaders in trade and commerce,
in Colonial enterprise and in war, in all
parts of the Northern Hemisphere. Fru
gal, industrious, persevering and brave,
success rewarded their undertakings.
Characterised beyond all else by loyalty to
their King, they were the most devoted of
the adherents of the ill-fated house of
Stuart, and they gathered around that fatal
standard with romantic devotion. To their
loyalty this land is indebted for not a few
of its best citizens and noblest heroes. The
land of the Highlanders Bonnie Scotland
has given to the world in all departments
of life, great men who have taken conspicu
ous parts in its history in war and peace.
The men from the land of Bobby Burns
have made their impress on the age and on
the people among whom they have lived,
and none occupies a higher niche in its Hall
of Fame than General Hugh Mercer.
Hugh Mercer was born in Aberdeen,
Scotland, in the year 1725. He descended
on his paternal side from a long line of min
isters of the Church of Scotland. The Eev.
William Mercer, his father, was in charge
of the Manse at Pittsligo, Aberdeenshire,
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 13
from 1720 to 1748, and although some biog
raphers of Mercer give the date of his birth
as 1721, the records of this church show
that he was baptised in 1726 ; it is therefore
thought now, that more accurate history
should place his birth in the year 1725.
On his mother s side he was closely related
to the Munro family; her name being Anna
Munro, daughter of Sir Eobert Munro, who
fought with conspicuous distinction in the
British Army at Fontenoy, on the Conti
nent, and elsewhere; and who, ordered
home to oppose the young Pretender, was
killed in 1746 while commanding British
troops at the Battle of Falkirk.
Mercer matriculated in the School of
Medicine of Marschall College in the year
1740, graduating in the year 1744. He had
hardly commenced the practice of his pro
fession ere Prince Charlie made his "dash
for a throne " which startled and, for a
while, stupefied the British by its daring
and brilliancy, but which was very ephem
eral in its existence. The Scotch, espe
cially those from the Highlands, were al
ways loyal to the House of Stuart, and
"Wha shall be King but Charlie!" as
it was played on the bagpipes by the kilted
Highlanders, his admiration for the people
whom the Pretender represented, and his
14 The life of General Hugh Mercer
convictions of the justice of his cause,
stirred up the martial and patriotic spirit
of Hugh Mercer, who joined Charles Ed
ward s Army as an Assistant Surgeon.
History and tradition are both silent as to
when Mercer "linked his fortune and his
fate" to the cause of the Pretender.
Whether he was on the fatal field of Fal-
kirk on January 17, 1746, we have no rec
ord; but on April 16, 1746, at Culloden,
near Inverness, he is found in the army of
Prince Charles. The Duke of Cumberland
was on that day in command of the Royal
forces against the Highlanders, and when
the sun went down on the field of carnage,
Mercer shared with his chieftain the gloom
of his defeat a defeat that marked the end
of the ambition of the Pretender and the
hopes of the Stuarts. The victorious shouts
of the army of the Duke sounded a veritable
dirge to a cause that was then irrevocably
lost. The last grand stand had been made,
and all was over.
Sir Walter Scott, with his splendid
genius for picturing and portraying, in the
"Tales of a Grandfather," gives a graphic
account of the Battle of Culloden; an ex
tract from which may not be inappropriate
to embody in this sketch. After narrating
the events of importance that led up to the
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 15
battle, the marching and the counter
marching of the armies of Prince Charles
and the Duke of Cumberland, and especi
ally the unsuccessful night attack on April
15th by the Army of the Pretender, Sir
Walter Scott wrote :
4 As the lines approached each other the
artillery opened their fire by which the
Duke of Cumberland s army suffered very
little and that of the Highlanders a great
deal, for the English guns being well served
made lanes through the ranks of the enemy,
while the French artillery scarcely killed a
man. To remain steady and inactive under
this galling fire would have been a trial to
the best-disciplined troops, and it is no
wonder that the Highlanders showed great
impatience under an annoyance peculiarly
irksome to their character; some threw
themselves down to escape the artillery,
some called out to advance, and a few broke
their ranks and fled.
"The cannonade lasted for about an
hour ; at length the Clans became so impa
tient that Lord George Murray was about
to give the order to advance, when the
Highlanders from the centre and right
wings rushed, without orders, furiously
down, after their usual manner of attack
ing, sword in hand, being received with
16 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
heavy fire both of cannon and grape-shot.
They became so confused that they got hud
dled together in their onset, without any
distinction of Clans or regiments. Not
withstanding this disorder, the fury of
their charge broke through Munro s and
BurrePs regiments, which formed the left
of the Duke of Cumberland s line; but that
General had anticipated the possibility of
such an event, and had strengthened his
second line so as to form a steady support
in case any part of his first should give
way. The Highlanders, partially victori
ous, continued to advance with fury, and al
though much disordered and partly dis
armed (having thrown away their guns
on the very first charge), they rushed on
SempilPs Kegiment, in the second line, with
unabated fury. That steady corps was
drawn up three deep, the first rank kneel
ing, and the third standing upright. They
reserved their fire until the fugitives of
BurrePs and Munro s broken regiments
had escaped round the flanks and through
the intervals of the second line. By this
time the Highlanders were within a yard of
the bayonet point, when Sempill s battalion
poured in their fire with so much accuracy
that it brought down a great many of the
assailants, and forced the rest to turn back.
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 17
A few pressed on, but unable to break
through SempilPs Eegiment were bayon
eted by the first rank. The attack of the
Highlanders was the less efficient that on
this occasion most of them had laid aside
their targets, expecting a march rather
than a battle.
"While the right of the Highland line
sustained their national character, though
not with their usual success, the MacDon-
nalds on the left seemed uncertain whether
they would attack or not. It was in vain
Lord George Murray called out to them,
* Claymore, telling the murmurers of this
haughty tribe that if they behaved with
their usual valor they would convert the
left into the right and that he would in fu
ture call himself MacDonnald. It was
equally in vain that the gallant Keppoch
charged with a few of his near relations,
while his Clan, a thing before unheard of,
4 The Chief was near the front of the
enemy and was exclaiming, with feelings
that cannot be appreciated, My God, have
the children of my tribe forsaken me? At
that instant he received several shots,
which closed his earthly account, leaving
him only time to advise his favorite nephew
to shift for himself.
18 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
"The three regiments of the MacDon-
nalds were by this time aware of the rout
of their right wing, and retreated in good
order upon the second line. A body of
cavalry from the right of the King s army
was commanded to attack them on their re
treat, but was checked by a fire from the
French pickets, who advanced to support
the MacDonnalds. At the same moment
another decisive advantage was gained by
the Duke s army over the Highland right
wing. A body of horse making six hundred
cavalry, with three companies of Argyle-
shire Highlanders, had been detached to
take possession of the Park walls ; the three
companies of infantry had pulled down the
east wall of the inclosure and put to the
sword about a hundred of the insurgents to
whom its defense had been assigned. They
then demolished the western wall, which
permitted the dragoons, by whom they were
accompanied, to ride through the inclosure
and get out upon the open moor to the west
ward, and form so as to threaten the rear
and flank of the Prince s second line.
i Gordon of Abbachie, with his Lowland
Aberdeenshire regiment, was ordered to
fire upon these cavalry, which he did with
some effect. The Campbells then lined the
north wall of the inclosure and commenced
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 19
a fire upon the right flank of the Highland
ers second line. That line, increased by
the MacDonnalds, who retired upon it, still
showed a great number of men keeping
their ground, many of whom had not fired a
shot. Lord Elcho rode up to the Prince and
eagerly exhorted him to put himself at the
head of those troops who yet remained and
make a last exertion to recover the day and
at least die like one worthy of having con
tended for a crown."
But all this was too late the Pretender
had been defeated; and his army, broken
and shattered, fled from the field, hotly pur
sued by the Duke of Cumberland and his
army. Of the treatment of the fallen and
their allies, Sir Walter Scott thus writes :
"The soldiers had orders to exercise to
wards the unfortunate natives the utmost
extremities of war; they shot, therefore,
the male inhabitants who fled at their ap
proach; they plundered the houses of the
chieftains; they burnt the cabins of the
peasants; they were guilty of every out
rage against women, old age, and infancy,
and where the soldiers fell short of these
extremities it was their own mildness of
temper or that of some officer of gentler
mood which restrained the license of their
20 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
And in conclusion, in his discussion of
this battle, its causes and its results, Sir
Walter Scott wrote: "Looking at the
whole in a general point of view, there can
be no doubt that it presents a dazzling pic
ture to the imagination, being a romance of
real life, equal in splendour and interest to
any which could be devised by fiction. A
primitive people, residing in a remote quar
ter of the empire and themselves but a
small portion of the Scottish Highlanders,
fearlessly attempted to place the British
Crown on the head of the last scion of those
ancient kings whose descent was traced to
their own mountains.
"This gigantic task they undertook in
favor of a youth of twenty-one, who landed
on their shore without support of any kind
and threw himself on their generosity.
They assembled an army in his behalf with
men unaccustomed to arms, the amount .of
the most efficient part of which never ex
ceeded two thousand; they defeated two
disciplined armies commanded by officers
of experience and reputation, penetrated
deep into England, approached within
ninety miles of the capital, made the Crown
tremble on the King s head, and were only
suppressed by concurrent disadvantages
which it was impossible for human nature
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 21
to surmount. It is, therefore, natural that
this civil strife should have been long the
chosen theme of the poet, the musician, and
the novelist. "
In his flight, the Pretender was like a
hare hunted by hounds. Flora MacDon-
nald, a Scottish maiden, foiled his pur
suers ; and at length he reached France in
safety. His loyal and loving followers
found refuge in any way possible, hunted
down, mercilessly butchered when caught.
The terrible tragedy of the battle was as
nothing compared to the butchery of these
fugitives by the relentless and implacable
Duke of Cumberland. Historians may dif
fer as to the right and righteousness of the
cause of Prince Charles Edward. None
can deny that William, Duke of Cumber
land, has rightly written his name as in
famous by his treatment of the fallen foe.
Campbell sweetly though sadly sang of
Lochiel, Lochiel, beware of the day
When the Lowlands shall meet thee in
For a field of the dead rushes red on my
And the Clans of Culloden are scattered in
22 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
They rally, they bleed, for their kingdom
Woe, woe to the riders that trample them
For dark and despairing my sight I may
But man cannot cover what God would
Tis the sunset of life gives me mystical
And coming events cast their shadows
I tell thee, Culloden s dread echoes shall
With the bloodhounds that bark for their
HAVING, as has been before stated, fallen
under the shadow of a great sorrow by the
disastrous ending of the Battle of Culloden,
and having eluded the vigilance of the min
ions of the " Bloody Butcher, " Dr. Hugh
Mercer, in the fall of the year 1746, em
barked at Leith for America, landing a few
weeks thereafter at Philadelphia. He did
not remain long, however, in that city, but
made his home on the western borders of
the State of Pennsylvania, near what was
then known as Greencastle, now Mercers-
burg. And for some years he practised his
profession as a physician and, what was
customary in those days, as an apothecary.
In that then sparsely settled section, the
territory over which he rode, dispensing
calomel and using the lancet, was very
large. Among the varied experiences of
this eventful and heroic life, none proved
more helpful and beneficial than the ardu
ous, unselfish years spent as a country doc
tor in Colonial times on the frontier of civi
lisation in Pennsylvania, a profession for
24 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
which he was well fitted by education and
training, and by the high qualities of en
durance, patience, skill and courage. For
the country doctor s life of that day needed
all the strength of body and of brain, the
steadfast will and tireless energy. It was a
wild and busy life in an unsettled region of
scattered homes ; distance and danger were
daily encountered, for the Indians still hov
ered upon the frontier, and life and liberty
were often imperiled by their unexpected
To this strange chance of fate and for
tune came the soldier-surgeon of Culloden,
and here he lived and labored for many
years, amid privation and peril, dauntless
and devoted; friend, healer, counsellor,
benefactor to all within the circle of his
far-reaching ministry of comfort and cure
the country doctor of the past. How shall
we picture a life, a man, so worthy of repro
duction and remembrance?
God gives to every man
The virtue, temper, understanding, taste,
That lifts him into life, and lets him fall
Just in the niche he has ordained to fill.
Known to all the inhabitants of the re
gion round about, loved ancl welcomed
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 25
everywhere, believed in and looked up to
as one who not only healed the sick, but one
who strengthened the weak, comforted the
weary, and cheered the sorrowing, Hugh
Mercer s life as a country doctor day by
day in active duty, with saddle-bags filled
with remedies for human ills, the old-fash
ioned medicines and the ever-ready lancet
for bloodletting, was a splendid prepara
tion for the hardships and privations he
was in the future called upon to endure. A
life of hardship ennobled by duty well done,
and consecrated by self-sacrifice.
It was a rough school, but a thorough
one, in which the country doctor learned
the lessons of life. As he rode amid the
forest solitudes, vigilant, alert, or visited
the waiting homes to which his presence
brought succor and relief, his memories of
the past merged in duties of the present,
with only faith and fortitude as guides
upon the way, his life might have seemed
unsatisfying to a nature less hopeful, less
heroic. All honor to this man, and the
many like him, whose daily round of sym
pathetic toil is brightened by the approval
of his conscience and the benedictions of
suffering humanity. The country doctor s
lasting monument lives in the hearts that
loved and reverenced him; and no higher
26 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
tribute to his memory can be written than
the tender and inspiring words of heavenly
recognition and reward, "I was sick and ye
It was a history-making era, that of the
year of 1755 the time of Braddock s dis
astrous defeat by the French and Indians,
in his attempt to capture Fort Duquesne.
There and then George Washington s
splendid career began, and there Mercer
made his first public and prominent ap
pearance as a Captain in the ill-fated army
of Braddock, conspicuous for his bravery
on the memorable July 9, 1755, of which
has been said, "The Continentals gave the
only glory to that humiliating disaster. "
"History," says another, "furnishes few
pages so replete with instances of official
incompetence and consequent failure as
that expedition, yet in the list of its Colo
nial heroes, the name of Hugh Mercer
stands ever bright." In this engagement,
Mercer was severely wounded ; and, having
been left behind by his own army in its
panic-stricken flight, after a perilous tramp
through a trackless wild, he at length re
joined his comrades and again commenced
the work of healing the sick at his old lo
The Indians with their French allies be-
Hugh Mercer as a Country Doctor in Pennsylvania
OPPOSITE P. 26
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 27
coming very aggressive and warlike, its
residents for self-protection formed them
selves into military associations of which
Colonel Armstrong was made Commander.
In one of these companies Hugh Mercer
was made Captain. His commission as
such is dated March, 1756, and he was given
the supervision of a very large territory,
with Bridgeport (then called McDowell s
Fort) as his headquarters.
During all this time he practised as a
physician among the people and as surgeon
to the garrison. In one of these Indian
fights he was again wounded and aban
doned to his foes. Closely pursued by his
savage foes," says a very interesting his
torian, "he providentially found a place of
safety in the hollow trunk of a tree, around
which the Indians rested and discussed the
prospect of scalping him in the near future.
When they had taken their departure, he
took out in another direction and com
pletely outwitted them." Sick with his
wounds and worn out with his recent strug
gles, he began a lonely march of over a hun
dred miles through an unbroken forest. To
sustain existence, he was compelled to live
on roots and herbs, the carcass of a rattle
snake proving his most nourishing and pal
atable meal. He finally succeeded in re-
28 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
joining his command at Fort Cumberland.
He was in command of one of the com
panies which captured an Indian settle
ment at Kittanning in 1756, but was again
wounded. In recognition and appreciation
of his services, sacrifices and sufferings in
these Indian wars, as well as his deeds of
daring, the Corporation of Philadelphia
presented him with a note of thanks and a
splendid memorial medal.
Mercer was placed in command of the
garrison at Shippensburg in the summer of
1757, and was promoted to the rank of Ma
jor in December of that year, and placed in
command of the forces of the province of
Pennsylvania west of the Susquehanna. In
that year, 1758, he was in command of a
part of the expedition of General Forbes
against Fort Duquesne. Whether Hugh
Mercer met George Washington at Brad-
dock s defeat, or at the headquarters of the
Forbes expedition against Fort Duquesne,
there seems to be some conflict of opinion
and statement among his biographers. The
time and place of that meeting is of no very
material moment. One thing seems to be
absolutely certain, that they did meet, and
an attachment sprang up between them
which lasted as long as Mercer lived. And,
further, that as a result of that meeting and
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 29
that attachment, on the advice and at the
suggestion of Washington, Virginia be
came the home of Hugh Mercer, and the
State of Pennsylvania lost him as a citizen.
SOME TIME after the end of the French-
Indian wars on the western borders of
Pennsylvania, Hugh Mercer moved to
Fredericksburg, Virginia; and during his
residence in that town another Scotchman
lived there, a fellow-citizen, one whose
name was destined to "go down the ages,
sung by poets and sages " John Paul
Jones! John Paul had only one home in
America, and that was Fredericksburg.
There his brother, William Paul, lived and
died. There he lies buried. It was while
John Paul was in Fredericksburg that he
added Jones to his name, and from there
he went forth as a Lieutenant of the Con
tinental Navy. These two illustrious
Scotchmen, Hugh Mercer and John Paul
Jones, no doubt often met and talked of
the land of their birth beyond the seas.
Both, however, became illustrious in the
cause of the Colonies in their struggle to
be free from the domination of Great Brit
ain, even though Scotland was one of its
constituent territories. In Fredericksburg,
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 31
Mercer commenced the practice of his pro
fession as a physician, his residence for a
number of years being a two-story frame
house on the corner of Princess Ann and
Amelia streets. His office and apothecary
shop was located in the building now stand
ing at the corner of Main and Amelia
An English traveller in 1784 published an
account of a visit that he had made to Fred-
ericksburg during the Bevolution, and
made this statement :
I arrived in Fredericksburg and put up
at an inn kept by one Weedon, who is now
a general officer in the American Army, and
who was then very active and zealous in
blowing the flames of sedition. In Fred
ericksburg, I called upon a worthy and inti
mate friend, Dr. Hugh Mercer, a physician
of great eminence and merit, and, as a man,
possessed of almost every virtue and ac
complishment. Dr. Mercer was afterwards
Brigadier-General in the American Army,
to accept of which appointment I have rea
son to believe he was greatly influenced by
General Washington, with whom he had
been long in intimacy and bonds of friend
ship. For Dr. Mercer was generally of a
just and moderate way of thinking and pos
sessed of liberal sentiments and a generos-
32 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
ity of principle very uncommon among
those with whom he embarked."
The inn to which this traveller referred
was < The Kising Sun Tavern, now stand
ing on upper Main Street; and Weedon,
who he said was actively engaged in blow
ing the flames of sedition, was brother-in-
law of Mercer. This intensely loyal son of
Great Britain was evidently a great ad
mirer of Hugh Mercer ; while he character
ised the so-called disloyal colonist as want
ing in that generosity of principle with
which Mercer, he said, was greatly en
Life in the quiet town of Fredericksburg
during these years was uneventful. Mer
cer pursued the even tenor of his way as a
country doctor, always a welcome guest in
the hospitable homes of its people; he at
tended the meetings of Lodge No. 4, A. F.
& A. M., of which he and George Washing
ton were members, and occasionally paid a
visit to the future " Father of his Country"
at Mount Vernon.
Some time in the spring of 1775, a horse
man suddenly dashed up the quiet streets
of his town with the startling news that Vir
ginia s Koyal Governor, Dunmore, at Wil-
liamsburg, the capital, had removed the
Colonial store of gunpowder from the mag-
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 33
azine to the British man-of-war Magdalen.
This tyrannical and aggressive act upon the
part of Dunmore only intensified the mut-
terings of discontent already existing in
the colony, and added fuel to the flames
that were already burning. Messengers
were at once dispatched to the adjoining
counties urging decisive action, and the
horsemen and footmen came pouring in. A
meeting was then called, and an organiza
tion perfected of which we have this
"Election of officers of minutemen and
regulars for Caroline, Spotsylvania, King
George and Stafford counties, Virginia,
September 12, 1775. At a meeting of the
select committee for the district of this
county, the counties of Caroline, Stafford,
King George and Spotsylvania, the follow
ing officers were elected :
Minutemen Hugh Mercer, Colonel ;
Mordecai Buckner, Lieutenant-Colonel ;
Robert Johnson, Major.
1 1 For Spotsylvania Lewis Willis,
George Stubblefield and Oliver Towles,
Captains; Robert Carter Page, Larkin
Chew, Francis Taliaf erro, Lieutenants ;
Henry Bartlett, Eobert Dudley and Wins-
low Parker, Ensigns."
And "Mercer s Minutemen" commenced
34 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
the march to Williamsburg. Before pro
ceeding very far, it is said that George Ma
son and others urged them to reconsider
and wait for further and fuller information
and not to act too hastily; and the cooler
counsels of these advisers prevailed. Of
this, Alexander Spotswood, in a letter to
George Washington of date April 30, 1775,
i I am extremely glad to inform you that
after a long debate it was agreed that we
should not march to Williamsburg.
Four days later, George Washington set
out from Mount Vernon for the Continen
tal Congress. The abandonment of the un
dertaking may have been brought about by
the want of ammunition, as Mercer wrote
to Washington on April 25, 1775 :
"We are not sufficiently supplied with
powder ; it may be proper to request of the
gentlemen who join us from Fairfax and
Prince William to come provided with an
over-proportion of that article.
Keturning to the town, they appointed a
Committee of Safety and adopted a set of
resolutions in which they pledged their sa
cred honor to resist all attempts against
their rights and liberties, from whatever
quarter they might be assailed, and agreed
to be in readiness to defend the laws, the
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 35
liberties and the rights of this or any sister
colony from unjust and wicked invasion by
force of arms, concluding with, "God save
the liberties of America. " It is claimed
that this Declaration is prior in time to
that of Mecklenburg, North Carolina, as it
is to that of the Continental Congress at
A thoughtful writer defines history
as "philosophy teaching by example." If
this be so, historic Fredericksburg ranks
high in the role of great names and great
deeds. Of the men who made our history
in Colonial days, before and during the
Revolutionary War, many were identified
with that old town, visited there, met to
gether in friendly converse or earnest coun
sel, and discussed the grave questions of
the hour England s oppressive measures
and the resistance of the Colonies, the
rights involved, the liberties invaded, and
the crisis inevitable. George Washington
was often there; Fredericksburg was the
home of his mother. Hugh Mercer lived
there as a physician; James Monroe, law
yer (who later led the advance of the
Americans in the battle of Trenton and af
terwards became President), also resided
there; John Marshall, afterward Chief Jus
tice, and George Mason of Gunston Hall,
36 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
leaders of thought, patriots of action, all
found Fredericksburg a pleasant and con
venient meeting place in those days, omi
nous of threatening strife and deadly con
In September, 1774, the General Con
gress of the Colonies met in Philadelphia,
the assembled delegates representing the
best and wisest, the most determined and
patriotic men of the land. Peyton Ean-
dolph, of Virginia, was chosen president;
and a declaration of rights and a series of
resolutions were adopted which for solid
ity of reasoning, force of sagacity, and wis
dom of conclusion 7 have never been ex
celled. The session ended on the 26th of
October, and it was recommended that an
other Congress meet in May, 1775. The
war-cloud was lowering.
In March, 1775, the Virginia Convention
assembled in St. John s Church, Richmond,
and Patrick Henry s magnetic eloquence,
his splendid rallying cry of "Liberty or
death," stirred all hearts to decision and
action. During these months of hesitation,
anxiety, possible compromise, yet contin
ued aggression, we can imagine this group
of patriots in Fredericksburg keenly alive
to the hazardous trend of public affairs
which culminated in open hostilities at Lex-
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 37
ington and Concord. The Eising Sun tav
ern was then the centre of public entertain
ment; and its genial host was Mr. George
Weedon, who afterwards became a Major-
General in the Continental Army. The
cosy apartments of the inn, its bright wood
fires and comfortable surroundings, in
duced good-fellowship and free exchange of
opinions. There was no need of argument,
as all were true patriots. It was surely as
picturesque a scene as history ever painted
those men in conversation at the * Rising
Sun!" Washington, wise and calm; Mer
cer, with patriotic power and battle memor
ies surging in his heart; impetuous Paul
Jones, eager for the fray; young Monroe,
summing up the wrongs of the Colonies,
and ready to avenge them; Marshall, the
learned jurist, the great advocate of jus
tice, and George Mason, one of the great
lights of history, whose genius illuminated
the cause and established its principles.
Can we not see them all, great men, whose
example lives still, whose names are blaz
oned on "the roll-call of the immortals. "
Madam Washington, as she was called,
lived not far from the Rising Sun tavern,
and would have enjoyed the earnest dis
cussions therein (which no doubt George
reported to her), as her sterling good sense
38 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
and keen observation made her opinions of
decided weight and influence.
After the removal of the powder, above
referred to, the news of unjustifiable acts
of aggression by the Crown in other Colo
nies came thick and fast. Events with
startling rapidity followed one after an
other. Concord and Lexington had been
heard from ; Virginia s Patrick Henry had
uttered the words that were heard around
the world ; and the Revolution was inaugu
rated. Three regiments were formed.
Henry was made Colonel of the First,
elected over Hugh Mercer by one vote in a
contest for the colonelcy.
William Woodford of Caroline County
became Colonel of the Second, and Mercer,
Colonel of the Third Regiment, of which his
brother-in-law, Weedon, was the Lieuten
ant-Colonel ; and Thomas Marshall of Fau-
quier County, the father of John Marshall
who afterwards became Chief Justice, was
the Major. About this time, Mercer, who
had married Miss Isabella Gordon, daugh
ter of John Gordon, resided in what is
known as "The Sentry-Box, " on lower
Main Street, a house which is still in good
condition and well preserved.
The election of Mercer to the colonelcy
of this Third Regiment was a veritable case
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 39
of the "office seeking the man," for when
the storm-cloud of war first appeared, Mer
cer made an offer of his services to the Vir
ginia Convention in these expressive but
brief words : "Hugh Mercer will serve his
adopted country and the cause of Liberty
in any rank or station to which he may be
assigned, " words which found their echo
in what he said later.
"We are not engaged," said he, "in a
war of ambition, or I should not have been
here. Every man should be content to
serve in that station in which he can be
most useful. For my part, I have but one
object in view, and that is, the success of
the cause ; and God can witness how cheer
fully I would lay down my life to secure
William Wirt, in his Life of Patrick
Henry, has this to say in connection with
Mercer s appointment:
i Three Eegiments of one thousand men
each was first determined on, and Patrick
Henry s friends nominated him for Colonel
of the First Regiment, it having been de
termined that this officer should be the
Commander-in-Chief of the forces to be
raised. The opposition united on Dr. Hugh
Mercer of Fredericksburg, who had served
with great distinction under Washington
40 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
in the French and Indian War of 1755. It
is no wonder that men, with so much at
stake, should have hesitated to place in
command of their entire forces a man of
no military experience (Patrick Henry),
however great his abilities as a civilian.
The first ballot stood for Hugh Mercer 41,
for Patrick Henry 40, for Thomas Nelson
8, and for William Woodford 1.
The second ballot between the two high
est resulted in the election of Mr. Henry,
although Mercer and Woodford were offi
cers of experience and ability. Nothing
but the conviction of the majority that the
qualities which made Mr. Henry a great
political leader would also make him a good
Colonel can explain their action in prefer
ring him (Patrick Henry) as the Comman-
der-in-Chief of the Virginia forces. Mer
cer was objected to for being a North
Briton. In answer to this objection it was
admitted that Mercer was born in Scotland,
but that he came to America in his early
years and had constantly resided in it from
his first coming over; that his family and
all his other connections were in this col
ony; that he had uniformly distinguished
himself as a warm and firm friend of the
rights of America; and what was a princi
pal consideration, that he possessed great
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 41
military as well as literary abilities. Mr.
Nelson acknowledged Mercer s military
abilities, declared he would not oppose his
appointment, and hoped that he himself
would not be voted for. Mr. Woodford,
who was not at that time a member of the
Convention, spoke much in favor of Mer
cer, declaring that he was willing to serve
under him, as he knew him to be a fine
Mercer s election is thus recorded in
the proceedings of the Virginia Conven
"Wednesday, January 10, 1776, Conven
tion proceeded by ballot to the appointment
of a Colonel of the Third Regiment, and
there was a majority of the whole Conven
tion in favor of Hugh Mercer. Resolved,
therefore, that the said Hugh Mercer be
appointed Colonel of the Third Regiment.
When the Committee of Safety heard of
Mercer s appointment, it passed these reso
"The committee of the county, to express
their approbation of the appointment of
Col. Mercer, and to pay a tribute justly
due to the noble and patriotic conduct
which that gentleman has uniformly pur
sued since the commencement of our dis
putes with the Mother Country, which was
42 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
so strikingly displayed on that occasion,
entered into the following resolve:
Resolved, That the thanks of this com
mittee be presented to Colonel Hugh Mer
cer, Commander-in-Chief of the Battalion
of Minute Men in the District of this
County, and the counties of Caroline, Staf
ford, and King George ; expressing the high
sense of the importance of his appointment
to that station, and our acknowledgements
of his public spirit in sacrificing his pri
vate interest to the service of his Country.
"ALEXANDER DICK, Clerk."
And Colonel Mercer, at the head of his
regiment, with his fife and drum, marched
away from his adopted Virginia home, bid
ding good-by to his wife, children, and
friends "whom God ordained and the
fates decreed " he should never, in this
world, see again.
COLONEL MERCER was ordered at once to
report to Williamsburg then the capital of
Virginia where there was a considerable
encampment of troops. A writer in a very
old periodical gives us an interesting ac
count of Mercer while there, from which we
"The commencement of the American
Revolution found him in the midst of an
extensive medical practice, surrounded by
affectionate friends, and enjoying in the
bosom of a happy family all the comforts
of social life. Stimulated to action
by a lofty spirit of patriotism, he
broke from the endearments of do
mestic life, and gave to his country
in that trying hour the energy and
resources of a practiced and accomplished
soldier. In 1775 he was in command of
three regiments of minute men, and early
in 1776 we find him zealously engaged, as
Colonel of the Army of Virginia, in drilling
and organizing the raw and ill-formed
masses of men who, under the varied names
44 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
of sons of liberty, minutemen, volunteers,
and levies, presented the bulk without the
order, the mob without the discipline, of
an army. To produce obedience and subor
dination among men who had entered
into the war unpaid and unrestricted by
command, was a severe and invidious
The courage, the fortitude, the self-pos
session of Colonel Mercer quailed not at
these adverse circumstances, and, by the
judicious exercise of mingled severity and
kindness, he soon succeeded in reducing a
mutinous soldiery to complete submission.
Tradition has preserved the following an
ecdote, illustrating, in a striking manner,
his characteristic promptitude and brav
Among the troops which arrived at Wil-
liamsburg, then the metropolis of Virginia,
was a company of riflemen from beyond
the mountains, commanded by Captain Gib
son. A reckless insubordination and a vio
lent opposition to military restraint had
gained for this corps the sarcastic name of
"Gibson s Lambs. " They had not been
long in camp before a mutiny arose among
them, producing much excitement in the
army, and alarming the inhabitants of the
city. Freed from all command, they roamed
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 45
through the camp, threatening with instant
death any officer who would presume to ex
ercise authority over them. In the height
of the rebellion an officer was dispatched
with the alarming tidings to the quarters
of Colonel Mercer. The citizens of the town
vainly implored him not to risk his life and
person amid this infuriated mob.
Reckless of personal safety, he instantly
repaired to the barracks of the mutinous
band, and directing a general parade of the
troops, he ordered Gibson s company to be
drawn up as offenders and violators of law,
and to be disarmed in his presence. The
ringleaders were placed under a strong
guard, and in the presence of the whole
army he addressed the offenders in an elo
quent and feeling manner, impressing on
them their duties as citizens and soldiers,
and the certainty of death if they continued
to disobey their officers and remained in
that mutinous spirit, equally disgraceful to
them and hazardous to the sacred interests
they had marched to defend. Disorder was
instantly checked, and, after a short con
finement, those under imprisonment were
released ; the whole company was ever after
as exemplary in deportment and conduct as
any troop in the army.
On June 5, 1776, Mercer was promoted
46 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
and made a Brigadier-General in the Con
tinental Army, of which the following cor
respondence gives evidence:
"President of Congress to General Mer
cer, Philadelphia, June 6, 1776. Sir: I
am directed by Congress to inform you that
they yesterday appointed you a Brigadier-
General in the armies of the United Colo
nies, and that they request you will imme
diately on receipt hereof set out for head
quarters at New York; for which purpose
I am commanded to forward you this by
express. Should you take Philadelphia in
your way, I must beg you will do me the
favor to call at my house, as it is highly
probable I shall have something in charge
from Congress ready for you at that time.
I do myself the pleasure to enclose your
commission; and have the honor to be, sir,
"Your most obedient and very humble
" J. HANCOCK, President.
"To Brigadier-General Mercer, Vir
"Williamsburg, June 15, 1776.
l Sir : I had the honor yesterday to re
ceive your letter of the 6th inst., together
with a commission, appointing me a Briga-
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 47
dier- General in the army of the United
Give me leave, sir, to request of you to
present to the honorable Congress my most
grateful acknowledgements in this distin
guished mark of their respect.
i I was on duty with part of my regiment
before Gwinn s Island, where Lord Dun-
more has taken possession, when your in
structions reached me; in consequence of
this I shall use my utmost diligence, after
settling the accounts of my regiment, to
wait on you in Philadelphia, I have the
honor to be, sir,
i Your most obedient, humble servant,
"To the Honorable John Hancock, Es
General Washington soon afterward ap
pointed him to take full command of the
troops at Paulus Hook, and charged him
with the duty of directing the movement of
a large detachment of Pennsylvania Militia
and of protecting that point against a
threatening invasion by the enemy from
Staten Island. The latter part of the year
1776 the Colonists, with bated breath,
feared the end of their struggle for liberty
had come. New York and Rhode Island
48 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
had been left in the hands of the British.
Washington slowly withdrew from New
Jersey, stubbornly disputing every effort
to bring on an engagement ; he crossed the
Delaware; as the Royalists approached he
retreated; at last he took refuge beyond
that river, and for a distance of many miles
he withdrew all the boats on its shores to
its right bank, in order to impede Cornwal-
lis in case he attempted to cross. The army
of the Colonists was poorly clad, many of
them barefooted; without tents, with few
blankets, and very scantily fed, they were
confronted by Cornwallis with a splendidly
equipped army, well provisioned and
The British Hessians were then in pos
session of Trenton, and had to a large ex
tent the practical control of the State of
New Jersey. Sir William Howe boasted
that Philadelphia would fall when the Del
aware became frozen. At this critical junc
ture, on Christmas night, Washington
crossed the Delaware amid a blinding storm
of snow and sleet. His passage became
much impeded by floating ice, but with the
rallying cry of "Victory or death, " he
executed that brilliant movement on De
cember 26, at Trenton, which caused
the loyal though much depressed pa-
The life of General Hugh Mercer 49
triots to renew their fast-wasting cour
By this coup-de-main, Washington cap
tured in the battle fought in Trenton about
one thousand stands of arms, one thousand
prisoners, and many stores of ammunition,
with a large amount of provisions and
clothing. This, with a bounty of ten dol
lars in gold to his troopers, restored fresh
confidence in his rank and file, and caused
the Continentals whose term of enlistment
was about to expire to remain under the
new flag of the Colonists for some weeks
longer. For this brilliant victory histori
ans, with one accord, give credit and glory
to Mercer. Major Armstrong, his aide-de
camp, who was present at a council of offi
cers, and who was with Mercer at the cross
ing of the Delaware, is authority for the
statement that Mercer suggested this ex
pedition, fraught with so much peril and
General Howe, who was amazed at
Washington s intrepid boldness, and
stunned by his great success, immediately
ordered Cornwallis by a forced march to
stop this onward advance. About five thou
sand men were pushed to Trenton, while a
larger body of men was held in reserve;
and on January 2d they met the advance
50 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
line of the Continental Army at Laurens-
ville. The British drove them back, and
about sunset of that day reached Trenton.
Washington, having carefully guarded the
ford and bridge, drew up his army beyond
the Assanpenk. This skirmish caused a
great loss in killed and wounded, and the
fate of the struggling Colonies was held
tremblingly in the balance. Had Cornwal-
lis forced the light that night with his vastly
superior and much better equipped troops,
it is possible that the fate of the Colonists
would have been sealed. He was urged to
make the attack, but refused, giving as an
excuse the fatigue of his troops, saying
"that he had the old fox just where he
wanted him, and would catch him in the
morning," a morning which never came to
him, so far as catching the "old fox" was
Washington was now confronted with
great peril. The army of Cornwallis in
front and the Delaware in the rear, retreat
was impossible; an open engagement was
nearly certain to result in defeat; and de
feat at this pivotal point in the life of the
Colonies meant the destruction of their
government and death to their hope for
that liberty for which they longed and had
suffered and sacrificed so much. At a coun-
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 51
cil of war held in General Mercer s head
quarters that night, the determination and
decision was reached to withdraw the Con
tinental forces from in front of the enemy
and go around him and attack the detach
ment then at Princeton; for by the Provi
dence of God, the roads were made pass
able by being frozen, or else such a perilous
expedition could not have been accom
The pickets of the two armies were with
in two hundred yards of one another, and
only a small stream, called the Assanpenk,
was between them. In order to deceive
the enemy, a long line of fire was kept up
in Washington s front while his army was
slowly on its way to Princeton, and thus
deceived, the enemy slept. The "old fox"
had escaped, as Cornwallis, much to his dis
may, found in the morning.
A woman guided the Continental Army
on that march beset with so many perils
and difficulties. A woman! Her loyalty,
her devotion, her sacrifice, and her suffer
ings for the cause of the Colony have given
and shall ever give her all honor, praise,
Washington passed safely around the
post of General Leslie at Maidenhead, but
his progress was so slow that it was sun-
52 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
rise when he reached Stonybrook, about
two miles from Princeton. He formed his
column at the Quaker meeting house, which
is still well preserved, at Princeton. The
van and rearguard was composed of Con
tinental soldiers who had bared their
breasts to many a storm of shot and shell ;
the center was composed of troops who
were first baptized with fire at Trenton.
Washington ordered forward a detachment
of about four hundred men under Mercer,
consisting of the First Virginia Kegiment,
Sham wood s Regiment from Maryland, and
Colonel Haslett s Delaware Regiments,
with NeaPs Battery, to seize a bridge at
Worth s Mill. This detachment marched
to the left from the road that leads along
the brook, while Washington took a by-road
to the right, in the rear of the Clark house ;
this road led directly to Princeton.
The Seventeenth, the Fortieth, and the
Fifty-fifth British regiments, and three
troops of Dragoons, had slept that night at
Princeton, and had already begun their
march to Trenton. The night had been
dark and dreary, and the morning was se
verely cold ; the Seventeenth Kegiment hav
ing crossed the bridge, occupied a hill be
Mercer s presence was revealed at day-
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 53
break, and Mawhood at once counter
marched his regiment and crossed the
bridge at Worth s Mill before Mercer could
reach it, each side being surprised by the
presence of the other. Each army tried to
gain the high ground west of Clark s house.
The Colonists reached it first, and from be
hind a worm fence opened fire, which was
quickly responded to by the British.
The British troops charged after the
third volley, and the Colonists were driven
back in disorder before a bayonet charge
from a force vastly superior in numbers.
At this point General Mercer dismounted
from his horse, which had been disabled,
and tried vainly to rally his men; while he
was doing so, he was knocked down by the
butt-end of a musket in the hand of a Brit
ish trooper, who demanded that he should
surrender, which he refused to do. He was
then bayoneted and left for dead on the
battle-field. (This spot has been marked
by the erection of a white pillar.)
As soon as Washington heard this firing,
he ordered forward the Pennsylvania Mi
litia and Moulder s Battery to the assist
ance of Mercer ; thus reinforced, the flight
of the Continentals was stopped, and the
British were made to halt in their pursuit.
At this critical moment Washington ap-
54 The Life of General Hugh. Mercer
peared in person, and taking in the situa
tion of affairs at a glance, he waved his hat
and cheered on his troops. Washington
was now between the firing lines of both ar
mies, and was in great danger and great
peril. Moulder s Battery poured volley af
ter volley into the ranks of the enemy, and
the roar of musketry followed, as the brave
Rhode Islanders and the Virginia Seventh
swung, with other Continentals, into line,
causing the enemy to break and fly, fol
lowed by victorious shouts from the Amer
As the smoke of battle cleared away, it
revealed Washington unharmed. Colonel
Fitzgerald, his aide-de-camp, galloped to
his side and said, * Thank God, your excel
lency is safe!" Washington replied,
"Away, my dear Colonel, and bring up the
troops ; the day is our own.
The rout of the British was complete.
Mawhood escaped with some of his scat
tered and shattered troops to Maidenhead.
Some fled up Stonybrook ; many were cap
tured by a body of cavalry from Philadel
General St. Clair met on this retreat the
Fifty-fifth Regiment of British soldiers and
quickly put them to flight ; a portion of the
Fortieth Regiment, which had not been in
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 55
the engagement, took refuge in Nassau
Hall, Princeton, and were captured.
And thus on the morning of January 3,
1777, the Battle of Princeton, which was of
short duration, but momentous of great re
sults, was fought and won; and the shout
of victory that commenced there was not
hushed until at Yorktown the end came
an end which marks the beginning of our
Eepublic, which is to-day the wonder of the
It is needless and unnecessary in this bi
ography of General Mercer to recount the
further movements, marches, and counter
marches of Washington and his army. In
this battle General Mercer, "who seems to
have excited the brutality of the British by
the gallantry of his resistance, " was
stabbed by their bayonets in seven different
parts of his body, and they inflicted on his
head many blows with the butt-end of their
muskets, only ceasing this butchery when
they believed him dead.
As soon after the battle as possible, Gen
eral Mercer was removed to an adjacent
farmhouse, owned by Mr. Clark, where
Mrs. Clark and her daughter tenderly
nursed him, being assisted by Major Lewis,
who was delegated by General Washington
to go there for that purpose. Dr. Bush, of
56 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
Philadelphia, and Dr. Archibald Alexan
der, of Augusta County, Virginia, who was
then a surgeon of the Virginia troops, were
at Mercer s bedside doing everything pos
sible to alleviate his sufferings, which were
intense and acute. Their services and min
istrations were without avail, for on Janu
ary 12, 1777, he died in the arms of Major
Lewis. The angel of death wooed him to a
brighter and better land, and the recording
angel wrote in the great book, "Well
He had willingly sacrificed his life for the
liberties of the people of his adopted land.
"For whether on the scaffold high,
Or in the battle s van,
The noblest death that man can die
Is when he dies for man.
DESIRING to give the full benefit of what
others thought and said of General Mercer
and the great value of his services to the
struggling Colonies, it cannot be thought
inappropriate for me to reproduce here
what has already been written of him, es
pecially by those who were near him in the
times of which they wrote. Among those
was General James Wilkinson, who says :
"The first fire was delivered by General
Mercer, which the enemy returned with a
volley and a sudden charge; many of our
men being armed with rifles, were forced,
after the third round, to abandon the fence,
and fled in disorder. On hearing the fire,
General Washington directed the Pennsyl
vania Militia to support General Mercer,
and in person led them on, with two pieces
of artillery under Capt. Wm. Moulder, of
the city of Philadelphia, who formed a bat
tery on the right of Thomas Clark s house;
the enemy pursued the detachment of Gen
eral Mercer as far as the brow of the de
clivity, etc. At the time General Mercer en-
58 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
gaged the Seventeenth Eegiment, under
Colonel Hand, and endeavored by a right
movement to turn the enemy s left flank,
In this affair our numerical loss was in
considerable it did not exceed 30, and only
14 were buried in the field; but it was of
great magnitude in worth and talents.
Colonels Haslett and Porter, Major Morris,
and Capt. Wm. Shippen were respected in
their corps; Captains Fleming and Neal
presented fair promise of professional ex
cellence ; but in General Mercer was lost a
chief who, for education, experience, tal
ents, disposition, integrity and patriotism,
was second to no man but the Commander-
in-Chief , and was qualified to fill the highest
trusts of the country. The manner in which
he was wounded is an evidence of the ex
cess to which the common soldiery are li
able in the heat of action, especially when
irritated by the loss of favorite officers. His
way being obstructed, when advancing, by
a post and rail fence in front of the or
chard, it may be presumed that the General
dismounted voluntarily, for he was on foot
when the troops in the front hesitated, be
came confused, and soon gave way, while
the few regulars in the rear could not
check the dastardlv retreat. Ere the for-
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 59
tune of the day was changed and victory
perched on the patriot standard, the heroic
Mercer fell. Bushing forward to rally his
broken troops, and stimulating them by
voice and example, his horse was shot from
under him, and he fell, dangerously wound
ed, among the columns of the advancing
enemy. Being thus dismounted, he was in
stantly surrounded by a number of British
soldiers, with whom, when they refused him
quarter, he fought desperately with drawn
sword until he was completely overpow
ered. Excited to brutality by the gallantry
of his resistance, they stabbed him with
their bayonets in seven different parts of
his body, and inflicted many blows on his
head with the butt-ends of their muskets;
nor did they cease their butchery until they
believed him to be a crushed and mangled
corpse. Nine days after the battle, he died
in the arms of Major George Lewis, of the
army, the nephew of General Washington,
whom the uncle had commissioned to watch
over the last moments of his expiring
friend. His latter hours were soothed by
the skillful and affectionate attendance of
the distinguished Dr. Eush. He complained
much of his head, and frequently remarked
to his surgeon that "there was the princi
pal danger/ and Dr. Eush, in speaking of
60 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
his patient s suffering, always ascribed his
death more to the blows on the head than
to the bayonet wounds, although several of
these were attended with extreme danger.
In a small house not far distant from the
blood-red plain of carnage and death, but
far away from the soothing consolations of
domestic affection, this distinguished mar
tyr of liberty breathed his last.
The mangled body was removed under a
military escort from Princeton to Phila
delphia, and exposed a day in the Coffee
house, with the idea of exciting by that
mournful spectacle the indignation of the
people. The Pennsylvania Evening Post
for January 18, 1777, has thus recorded his
death and funeral obsequies: "Last Sun
day evening, died, near Princeton, of the
wounds he received in the engagement at
that place on the 3rd instant, Hugh Mercer,
Esquire, Brigadier-General in the Conti
nental Army. On Wednesday his body was
brought to this city, and on Thursday bur
ied on the south side of Christ Church,
with military honors, attended by the Com
mittee of Safety, the members of the As
sembly, gentlemen of the army, and a num
ber of the most respectable inhabitants of
this city. The uniform character, exalted
abilities, and intrepidity of this illustrious
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 61
officer will render his name equally dear to
America, with the liberty for which she is
now contending, to the latest posterity.
The battles of Trenton and Princeton, in
which General Mercer fought and bled unto
death, were the most brilliant and fortunate
victories won in the War of the Revolution.
The question of our independence was now
no longer a matter of doubt. General Mer
cer s elevated character, lofty heroism, and
brutal murder excited a deep and affection
ate sympathy throughout all the Colonies.
General Washington, in an official letter to
the Continental Congress, thus alluded to
Generals Mercer and Warren, Congress
having, on April 7, 1777, resolved that a
monument should be erected at Boston to
the memory of General Warren, and one at
Fredericksburg to General Mercer :
i The honors Congress has decreed to
the memory of Generals Warren and Mer
cer afford me the highest pleasure. Their
character and fortitude had a just claim
to every mark of respect, and I heartily
wish that every officer of the United States,
emulating their virtues, may by their ac
tions secure to themselves the same right to
the grateful tributes of their country. 7
On January 15, 1777, Washington wrote
to Mr. Joseph Reed:
62 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
"When you see General Mercer, be so
good as to present my best wishes to him
and congratulations (if the state of his
health will admit of it) on his recovery
from death. You may assure him that
nothing but the confident assertion to me
that he was either dead, or within a few
minutes of dying, and that he was put into
as good a place as I could remove him to,
prevented his seeing me after the action
and pursuit at Princeton."
When that letter was written the hero
of Princeton had passed to the Great Be
yond. A farther evidence and expression
of the high estimation in which General
Mercer was held by Washington is found
in a letter from the latter to General Liv
ingston, dated from headquarters, July 6,
1776, 5 o clock p. M., in which he wrote :
* General Mercer has just set off for Jer
sey. In his experience and judgment you
may repose great confidence. He will pro
ceed to Amboy after conferring with you.
You will please to keep me constantly in
formed of the proceedings of the enemy,
and be assured of every assistance and at
In the Journal of the Continental Con
gress for June 3 and July 19, 1776,
what was known as the Flying Camp was
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 63
constituted of ten thousand men, to be put
under the command of such a Continental
officer as General Washington should di
rect, and by his direction they assembled
at Amboy, New Jersey, under the command
of General Mercer.
General Washington, in another letter to
General Livingston, of date July 5, 1776,
referring to Mercer said: "His judgment
and experience may be depended on ; " and
on January 5, 1777, in his official report to
Congress, of the Battle of Princeton, after
describing the battle and the capture of
prisoners, etc., he said: "This piece of
good fortune is counterbalanced by the loss
of the brave and worthy General Mercer."
Nothing is needed further to show how
the great Washington regarded Hugh Mer
cer, and to this I will add what was said of
him by Lafayette on his last visit to this
The conversation in a brilliant company
turning on the prominent men of the Bevo-
lution, one of the company observed to him
that he, General Lafayette, was, of course,
acquainted with General Mercer, not recol
lecting that Lafayette did not arrive in the
United States until after the Battle of
Princeton. "Oh, no," said the General,
"you know that Mercer fell in January,
64 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
1777, and I reached the United States in
the ensuing spring; but on my arrival I
found the army and whole country so full
of his name that an impression has been
always left on my mind since that I was
personally acquainted with him."
At Princeton the high tide of the Revolu
tion was reached. Before then, gloom had
settled on the cause of the Colonies. The
Tories, with their "I told you so," pre
dicted and prophesied a humiliating defeat,
and the loyal Colonists began to doubt and
despair. After that battle the bright sun
shine of hope settled on this fair land of
ours, and from that point the army of
Washington fought to conquer ; for the vic
tory of Princeton not only encouraged the
doubting and despairing rebels, as the Col
onists were called, but it brought to them
the recognition and alliance of France.
That victory, however, was dearly gained,
for amidst the exultant charge of our vic
torious legions could be heard the dying
groans of that pure patriot the brave and
"What death could finer laurel buy?
What grander ending can there be
Than for a noble man to die
To help to make his country free?
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 65
Although the day was dearly bought,
Twas there the Tyrant s doom was
And not in vain the fight was fought
When Mercer fell on Princeton Field.
His sword will waste away with rust,
And tho twere wrapped in cloth of
Within the grave his precious dust
In time will mingle with the mold ;
But he, himself, is canonized,
If saintly deeds such fame can give,
For long as Liberty is prized
HUGH MERCER S NAME SHALL SURELY
ON JANUARY 31, 1777, the Continental
Congress passed the following resolution:
1 That a committee of four be appointed to
consider what honors are due to the mem
ory of General Mercer, who died on the
12th instant, of wounds received on the 3d
of the same month, in fighting against the
enemies of American liberty, near Prince
ton. The members of that committee were
the Hon. Messrs. Rush, Heynard, Page, and
S. Adams. On April 8, 1777, that com
mittee reported "That a monument be
erected to the memory of General Mercer
at Fredericksburg, in the State of Virginia,
with the following inscription:
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 67
Sacred to the memory of
Brigadier-General in the Army of
The United States.
He died on the 12th of January, 1777,
of the wounds he received on the
3rd of the same month,
Near Princeton, in New Jersey,
Bravely defending the
Liberties of America.
The Congress of the United States,
In testimony of his virtues and their
Have caused this monument to be erected.
The report of the committee was, how
ever, never executed. Under that resolu
tion no monument was ever built; why, no
one knows. Nations, like some individuals,
soon forget. For more than a century did
this Republic fail in its duty to the memory
of the gallant Mercer. At last the con
science, as well as the sense of justice, of
the nation was aroused. Hence by an act
of Congress, approved June 28, 1902, the
resolution of 1777 was directed by Congress
to be carried into effect, and at Fredericks-
burg, in the State of Virginia, there has
been a monument erected to perpetuate the
fame and name of Hugh Mercer. And it
68 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
is well, "lest we forget, lest we forget."
The same epitaph is engraved on this mon
ument that was prescribed in the resolu
tions of 1777. The City of Philadelphia
paid the memory of Mercer a great tribute
by giving his remains a public funeral,
which it is said 30,000 people attended. He
was buried in the graveyard of Christ
Church. In 1817 his son visited his grave ;
the old sexton a Mr. Dolley who had at
tended the funeral of the General, was
there alone. Under the grass on the south
side of the brick enclosure was found a
plain and unadorned marble slab, inscribed
Gl. M. In memory of Gen 1 Hugh Mercer,
who fell at Princeton, January 3rd, 1777."
The St. Andrew s Society afterward re
moved his remains to the Laurel Hill Ceme
tery and erected a monument to his mem
ory, which was dedicated with imposing
ceremonies on Thursday, November 26,
1840; on which occasion Wm. B. Reed,
Esq., grandson of Adjutant-General Reed,
of the Revolution, delivered a beautiful ad
dress. General Mercer had joined the St.
Andrew s Society in Philadelphia, in 1757.
On the front die of this monument, etc., is
the following inscription:
The Monument to Gen. Hugh Mercer at Fredericksburg, Va.
OPPOSITE P. 6<
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 69
Dedicated to the memory of
GENERAL HUGH MERCER,
For the sacred cause
The Battle of Princeton.
He poured out his blood for a generous
Left-hand side of die :
The St. Andrew s Society
Offer this humble tribute
To the memory of
An illustrious brother.
When a grateful posterity shall bid the
trophied Memorial rise to the martyrs who
sealed with their blood the Charter of an
Empire 7 s Liberties, there shall not be want
ing a monument to him whom
Mourned as "The Worthy and Brave
70 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
Eight-hand side of die :
General Mercer, a physician of Freder-
icksburg, in Virginia, was distinguished for
his skill and learning, his gentleness and
decision, his refinement and humanity, his
elevated honour and his devotion to the
great cause of civil and religious liberty.
In the historical paintings of the Battle
of Princeton by Peale, at Princeton, and by
Trumbull at New York, General Mercer is
given a prominent position. And the states
of Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Virginia, and
New Jersey, have by solemn and appropri
ate acts of their respective Legislatures,
named a county " Mercer " in his honor.
On October 1, 1897, a bronze tablet was
unveiled in Princeton, bearing this inscrip
"To the memory of General Hugh Mer
cer, the revered martyr of American Inde
pendence. Born in Scotland in 1720; edu
cated as a physician ; emigrated to America
in 1747; was appointed by Congress, June
5th, 1776, a Brigadier-General in the Amer
ican Army; was mortally wounded at the
Battle of Princeton, January 3rd, 1777 ; and
died in the house now standing near this
spot January 12th, 1777. This tablet was
The Grave of General Mercer in Laurel Hill Cemetery,
Philadelphia, Pa., with Monument Erected
by St. Andrew s Society
OPPOSITE P. 7O
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 71
erected by the Mercer Engine Company No.
3 of Princeton, N. J., October 1st, 1897, at
the semi-centennial celebration. "
On this occasion Judge Beverly E. Well-
ford, of Richmond, Va., and Dr. Henry C.
Cameron, of Princeton, made eloquent and
appropriate historical orations.
In November, 1899, the Hon. Henry W.
Green, of Trenton, N. J., presented a hand
some portrait of General Mercer to the
Mercersburg Academy of Pennsylvania;
and in doing so, among other things, said :
"His life record shows him as a soldier,
brave and courageous; as a physician,
learned in his profession ; as a scholar, well
read and of generous attainments ; as a pa
triot, pure and impulsive; as a Christian,
self-sacrificing and true. Few lives illume
the page of national history with kindlier
glow than that of Mercer. Fortunate the
town with such a namesake; honored the
school that bears his name ; glorified the na
tion in whose cause he laid down that most
precious of his possessions his life."
Hugh Mercer was an alumnus of Mar-
schal College and the University of Aber
deen, Scotland, and this university recog
nizes him as one of its most illustrious stu
dents. In its annual list of honored alumni,
he is one of the three chosen to represent
72 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
the profession of arms ; the other two being
Field-Marshal James Keith, the distin
guished officer in the service of Frederick
the Great, and Sir James Outram, the
" Bayard of India, "
Congress, on motion of Thomas Jeffer
son, in 1784 made an appropriation for the
education of General Mercer s youngest
son, Hugh, who died at his residence, "The
Sentry Box," December 2, 1853. Another
son, John, a distinguished lawyer, died
September 30, 1817; and his only daugh
ter, Anna Gordon, who married Eobert Pat-
ton, died in Fredericksburg, Va,, May 12,
1832. General Hugh W. Mercer, of Savan
nah, Ga., a gallant officer in the Confeder
ate Army, was a grandson of General Mer
cer, and the late John M. Patton, another
grandson, was a member of Congress from
the Fredericksburg District under Jack
son s administration, and was acting-Gov
ernor of Virginia in 1840.
Now as the end of the story of the life
of Hugh Mercer in this work approaches,
by way of recapitulation it behooves us to
ask, What were the most attractive and po
tential elements of that life? We would
say, Fidelity to principle, fixedness of pur
pose, faithfulness in the discharge of the
obligations imposed by citizenship, with a
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 73
fearlessness that knew no limitation when
duty and obligation joined in demanding
energetic action. To realize that this is
true, the reader need only be reminded of
what was accomplished by Mercer, and how
that accomplishment was brought about.
We find him at Culloden obeying every in
spiration of loyalty to Scotland and Scot
tish traditions when he championed the
cause of the Pretender. To have done oth
erwise would have been contrary to every
dictate of duty as it was impressed on Scot
land itself. When he became a resident of
America, on the frontier of Pennsylvania,
he felt himself obliged by the very highest
and holiest obligations of citizenship to im
peril his life in many Indian wars in order
to preserve the lives and protect the homes
of the people among whom he lived. When
the tocsin of war sounded, and the Colo
nies "struck for liberty" and for freedom
from the intolerable and tyrannical aggres
sions of Great Britain, being impressed
with the right and righteousness of the
cause of the Colonies, he at once offered his
services in their behalf, gave up his life for
the cause which he espoused, and died that
liberty might live.
His life was a strenuous one, full of ex
acting and unselfish work for others : As a
74 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
country doctor, ministering to the sick and
comforting the suffering; as a Mason,
teaching by precept and by example the
cardinal doctrines of the craft, the father
hood of God and the brotherhood of man ;
as a member of the church, expressing by
his walk and conversation the faith he felt
in the Savior of men, whom he humbly fol
lowed ; as the head of his home, in the God-
given capacity of husband and father, ever
directing its affairs and executing its du
ties, making his home life spotless and
stainless ; as a citizen, evading no obligation
and avoiding no demand imposed upon that
citizenship. He was a soldier always, vigi
lant, obedient and loyal; an officer whose
tactics were of the onward, never backward
order, counselling against evacuation of
strategic positions, even though it seemed
impossible to retain them, with judgment
that could be always relied on, said the
great Washington. When confronted by
seemingly insurmountable obstacles, he
suggested movements by which superiority
in numbers could be overridden by superi
ority in forethought and decisive action. He
was brave without being desperate ; he was
a good disciplinarian without being a mar
tinet. In his vocabulary there was no such
word as surrender. He was willing t to
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 75
do, dare or die for the flag under which he
enlisted ; he unsheathed his sword in honor,
and never was it dishonored to his dying
day ; he was the hero of Princeton, with no
one to pluck that laurel from his brow, and
is entitled to the glory that came from that
victory which resulted in a Confederation
of States that has made the Western Hem
isphere the admiration and the wonder of
the world. He is entitled to the gratitude
of all liberty-loving America. His life was
beautiful and complete in its symmetry,
and was both a benediction and benefac
tion. The memory of such a man cannot
perish from the face of the earth, but shall
be as eternal as Truth.
THIS narrative would not be complete
without a short story of the friends of
Hugh Mercer at Fredericksburg his daily
associates, who communed with him at the
sessions of the Masonic Lodge; who sat
Around the old open fireplace at the Eising
Sun tavern and talked with him about the
gossip of the town ; who watched and waited
with him, in front of the post-office, for the
coming of the rumbling, rattling old stage
with its weekly mail and its belated news
from Williamsburg. It is not, however, my
purpose to write a biography of these peo
ple, but only a short sketch of them as their
lives touched that of Mercer s, and as these
distinguished people were connected and
associated with Fredericksburg; and, as
Washington stands in the forefront of this
nation s life, so he stands, peerless and
high above all others, in the life of this
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 77
He who was " first in war, first in
peace, and first in the hearts of his country
men" was a very small boy when his
father, Augustine Washington, died on his
place, since called "The Washington
Farm," opposite Fredericksburg. He went
to school in that town, and in after-life
referred to it as the town of his youth and
maturing manhood. Just before the com
mencement of the Revolution, his mother
and her family moved into the town. Wash
ington, in his maturer years, visited his
mother there frequently. He and his bride,
en route from Williamsburg to Mount Ver-
non, came by Fredericksburg to receive, no
doubt, his mother s blessing and benedic
tion. He was the owner of several lots in
the town. After the surrender of Cornwal-
lis at Yorktown, Washington, impelled by
the love and adoration which he had for
her, determined that his first visit should
be to his mother at Fredericksburg, and he
came to her without delay. On that visit
he was received with expressions of joy
and gratitude by the people of the place,
and was presented with an address of wel-
came and congratulations by the Town
Council. On that occasion a grand ball was
78 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
given in his honor, which he attended, ac
companied by Lafayette and other distin
guished officers. In those days the ball com
menced at early candle-light. His aged
mother, whom he escorted, left at nine
o clock. After seeing her safely home, he
returned and danced the stately minuet
with one of the Gregory girls, who was his
Washington was a member of Lodge No.
4, A. F. and A. M., the records of which
lodge show that he was made a Mason No
vember, 1752. On that date there was re
ceived from George Washington, for his
entrance fee, two pounds and five shillings.
When in Fredericksburg he attended the
services of St. George s Episcopal Church.
It is related that on one of his visits after
he had become great and famous, while at
tending the services of this church, it be
came overcrowded, that the old frame
building gave evidences of being unsafe,
and that a panic was only averted by the
coolness of Washington himself.
His only sister, Bettie, who married
Fielding Lewis, lived at a place called
"Kenmore," then on the outskirts of the
Parson Weems locates Fredericksburg as
the place where the great Washington
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 79
threw a silver dollar across the Rappahan-
nock River, and the farm just across the
river and immediately opposite Fredericks-
burg as the place where the cherry tree
and hatchet incident occurred. Although
tradition says Washington read this life
of himself by Weems, history does not re
cord what he said about it. Perhaps he
thought if he (Washington) could not tell
a lie, the parson could, and did.
Mercer and Washington were close and
intimate friends from the time they first
met on the frontier of Pennsylvania until
the death of Mercer at Princeton. They
often met in old Fredericksburg, at the
home of Washington s mother, in the lodge
room, and at the old Rising Sun tavern.
He who enters the town is constrained to
stand reverently, with uncovered head, on
ground around which cling holy memories
of its most illustrious citizen.
JOHN PAUL JONES
John Paul was born July 6, 1747,
in the parish of Kirkbean, Scotland. His
brother, William Paul, had resided in Fred
ericksburg some time prior to 1760, and
kept a grocery store in a house now stand-
80 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
ing at the corner of Prussia and Main
The will of William Paul is recorded in
Spottsylvania County, dated March 22,
1772, and probated November 16, 1774. In
his will he wrote : * It is my will and
desire that my lots and houses in
this town be sold and converted into money,
which I give and bequeath to my beloved
sister, Mary Young, and her two oldest
children, in the Parish of Kirkbean, in
the stewarty of Galloway, North Britain,
Scotland." And as this Mary Young-
was also sister of John Paul, it cannot
possibly be doubted that William and John
Paul were brothers. William Paul died
in 1773, and is buried in old St. George s
churchyard. Over his remains there is still
standing a moss-covered stone, with the
simple inscription : < William Paul, 1773.
Seven cities claimed Homer, dead, and
three contended for Virgil ; a greater num
ber of American cities claim that John Paul
had his home within their gates, but the
record is against them. Fredericksburg,
Virginia, was the one and only home of the
great admiral in this country. One of his
many biographers, as far back as 1823, lo
cates him at Fredericksburg, at the home
of his brother William.
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 81
During the Revolution he wrote to Baron
Von Copelan: "America has been the
country of my fond election since I was
thirteen, when I first saw it." His first
visit, therefore, to Fredericksburg was
about 1760, and after remaining there for
nearly four years he went back to Scot
land. In < The National Portrait Gallery,
published in 1833, it is stated, "In 1773 we
find him (John Paul) in Fredericksburg,
arranging the estate of his brother Will
iam, who had settled in Fredericksburg."
In addition, the traditions and history of
the town establish the unimpeachable fact
that the illustrious hero of the sea had only
one home in America Fredericksburg. It
was while living there that he added Jones
to his name. The reason that moved him
to do this is not known. Speculation and
guesses abound, and authorities differ.
There must have been some strong impel
ling cause, but it is locked in the mystery
of a long silence.
While a resident of that town he received
his commission as lieutenant in the Conti
nental Navy. The splendid achievements
of John Paul Jones are already so well
known to the world that I will not attempt
in so brief an article as this to narrate them
or to give the story of his brilliant career.
82 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
His hand was the first to unfurl the Stars
and Stripes on the high seas. As the com
mander of the Bon Homme Richard, his
story is the pride of every boy in America.
He was the only man who ever gave battle
to the English on English soil. These
things are within the knowledge of all. It
is of his life in Fredericksburg that I
write, and strive to redeem from the past
those years of which so little has been writ
Mercer and Jones, both Scotchmen, were
residents there at the same time, and it can
scarcely be drawing on the imagination to
picture these men of the Clans of old Scot-
hand often meeting in social intercourse
to talk of the land of their birth, being
drawn together as friends and associates
by the strong bond of their mother-country.
It was from Fredericksburg that Mercer
went forth to make his name immortal,
fighting the battles of the Colonies on land ;
and it was from there that John Paul Jones
went to become illustrious by his great vic
tories on the sea. The memories of both
these great and illustrious men are cher
ished by old Fredericksburg, and will ever
be cherished by her as long as the story
of their lives shall live and Fredericksburg
John Paul Jones
OPPOSITE P. 82
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 83
GENERAL GEORGE WEEDON
George Weedon was the "mine host" of
the Rising Sun tavern at Fredericksburg,
whom our English traveler, heretofore
mentioned, said was over-zealous in stir
ring up sedition in the Colonies. He was
also postmaster there. The post-office was
kept in the tavern. Weedon was appointed
lieutenant-colonel of the regiment of which
Mercer was the colonel, was promoted to
its colonelcy on August 17, 1776, and was
made a brigadier-general on February 24,
In the Battle of Brandywine, Weedon
rendered conspicuous and valuable service
while commanding a brigade in Greene s
division, which checked the pursuit of the
British and saved our army from utter and
complete rout. He was a brave and bril
liant commanding officer at the Battle of
Germantown. In consequence of some dis
satisfaction about rank, he left the army
at Valley Forge, re-entering it in 1780 ; and
in 1781 he was given the command of the
Virginia Militia at Gloucester, which posi
tion he held at the surrender of Cornwal-
lis at Yorktown.
General Weedon was the first president
of the Virginia Branch of the Society of
84 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
Cincinnati, and was a member of Lodge
No. 4, A. F. and A. M., of which lodge Mer
cer was at one time the Master. After the
death of his brother-in-law, General Hugh
Mercer, General Weedon occupied "The
Sentry Box" on lower Main street; and
was appointed by the Court the guardian of
Mercer s children. He died in Fredericks-
burg in the early part of the last century.
The General wrote a song, entitled
"Christmas Day in 76," which was sung
at his festive board at each recurring
Christmas. A very interesting account of
this was given in a letter dated February
8, 1837, from Hugh Mercer, Esq., the son
of the General, to the grandfather of Judge
Beverly Wellford, of Richmond, and no
apology is offered for reproducing this
song in this memoir.
CHRISTMAS DAY IN 76
On Christmas Day in seventy-six
Our ragged troops, with bayonets fixed,
For Trenton marched away.
The Delaware ice, the boats below,
The light obscured by hail and snow,
But no signs of dismay.
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 85
Our object was the Hessian band
That dare invade fair Freedom s land,
At quarter in that place.
Great Washington, he led us on,
With ensigns streaming with renown,
Which ne er had known disgrace.
In silent march we spent the night,
Each soldier panting for the fight,
Though quite benumbed with frost.
Greene on the left at six began,
The right was with brave Sullivan,
Who in battle no time lost.
Their pickets stormed; the alarm was
The rebels, risen from the dead,
Were marching into town.
Some scampered here, some scampered
And some for action did prepare;
But soon their arms laid down.
Twelve hundred servile miscreants,
With all their colors, guns, and tents,
Were trophies of the day.
The frolic o er, the bright canteen
In center, front, and rear, was seen,
Driving fatigue awav.
86 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
And, brothers of the cause, let s sing
Our safe deliverance from a king
Who strove to extend his sway.
And life, you know, is but a span;
Let s touch the tankard while we can,
In memory of the day.
1 1 Written by General George Weedon, of
the Eevolutionary Army, who was in the
action at Trenton, and had charge of the
Hessian prisoners after the victory, which
prevented his being at Princeton a few
days after and taking part in that glorious
"My uncle and second father, General
Weedon, went through the whole Eevolu
tionary W^ar, commanding the American
troops on the Gloucester side of York River
during the siege of York and the surrender
of the British Army at that memorable
place. The brilliant victories at Trenton
and Princeton were won at the most gloomy
period of the great struggle for our inde
pendence ; it was the crisis of the war, and
turned the scale in favor of our bleeding
country. H. MERGER. "
"My dear Sir: I have had much pleas
ure in writing out for you, as you request
ed, the patriotic song of Christmas Day in
76. For many years after the Revolution
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 87
my uncle celebrated at The Sentry Box
(his residence, and now mine) the capture
of the Hessians, by a great festival a jubi
lee dinner, if I may so express myself at
which the Revolutionary officers then living
here and in our vicinity, besides others of
our friends, were always present. It was
an annual feast, a day or so after Christ
mas Day, and the same guests always at
Your father was, of course, a standing
guest. I was young, and a little fellow, and
was always drawn up at the table to sing
Christmas Day in 76.
; Two young servant boys he was bring
ing up as waiters in the family were posted
at the door as sentinels, in military cos
tumes, with wooden muskets on their shoul
ders ; one he called Corporal Killbuck and
the other Corporal Killdee. It was always
a joyous holiday at The Sentry Box.
"I am, my dear sir,
"Most truly yours,
James Monroe was born in Westmore
land County, Virginia, April 28, 1758. He
was educated at William and Mary College,
88 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
graduating in 1776. On leaving that col
lege he took up law for a profession; but
being inspired by the martial fire that was
then filling the breasts of the young men of
that time, at the commencement of hostili
ties he offered his services and sword in
the cause of the Colonies. He was made a
lieutenant in the regiment which was com
manded by Hugh Mercer, and was with
Washington and Mercer when they crossed
the Delaware. On December 26, 1776, he
was wounded in the shoulder at Trenton,
while leading the van of the army. On re
covering from his wound he was appointed
as an aide-de-camp on the staff of Lord
Sterling, and was in the battles of Brandy-
wine, Germantown and Monmouth.
After the war he again took up his resi
dence in Fredericksburg. Under the laws
then in force, in order to vote and hold of
fice it was necessary to own property ; and
to meet that qualification, an uncle of Mon
roe, who was also a resident of Fredericks-
burg, made him a gift of a town lot, and
thus he was enabled to exercise the great
and inalienable right of an American citi
Monroe was at that time a member of
the Fredericksburg Town Council, and a
vestryman of St. George s Episcopal
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 89
Church. When only twenty-four years of
age he was sent to Congress for the district
of which Fredericksburg constituted a part.
So it was brought about that Monroe, in the
Town Council of Fredericksburg, com
menced a career which culminated in his
election to the Presidency.
Monroe was a continuous office-holder,
having been a town councilman, a member
of the Virginia Legislature, Governor of
that State, member of Congress, minister
to two foreign courts, senator, cabinet offi
cer and President. And, what is to his
everlasting honor and credit, he executed
the trusts of these various and varied sta
tions with faithfulness and efficiency. He
did his duty, and did it well, and has en
shrined his name in America s history as
a patriotic citizen, and as a conscientious,
conservative and able officer.
The result of his life in dollars and cents
was that his poverty was to him a badge
Monroe was much younger than Mercer,
but he doubtless was found on the outskirts
of the assembled and much excited patriots
around the old open fireplace at the Eising
Sun tavern, which tradition locates as a
meeting place of these worthies "in ye old
en time" for the discussion of the removal
90 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
of the powder at Williamsburg by Dun-
more, and other acts of England s intol
erable tyranny, as well as to formulate
methods and means to stop and stay the
onward march of Great Britain s aggres
sions against the rights and liberties of the
Colonies. And when the cry "To arms!"
rang out over the land, young Monroe
showed his faith by his works when he en
listed in the regiment of which his friend,
Mercer, was colonel.
He was, however, destined to play a
greater and more prominent part in the
drama of life than Mercer. From a lieu
tenant he became the Commander-in-Chief
of the army ; from a member of the council
of the town of Fredericksburg he became
the Chief Executive of the Eepublic. Who
knows how potential was the influence of
Mercer on the life of Monroe, and how
much, and how far, that influence shaped
and molded his character, and thus
brought about the illustrious career of
Monroe? We only know that they were
true and loyal friends.
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 91
MARY, THE MOTHER OF
After the death of her husband, Augus
tine Washington, "Madam Washington, 7
as she was called by her neighbors and
friends, moved to Fredericksburg, and
lived and died in the house now standing
on the corner of Charles and Lewis streets.
The world pays its tribute to the memory
of the mother of the "Father of His Coun
try. President Andrew Jackson said that
"the character of Washington was aided
and strengthened, if not formed, by the care
and precepts of his mother, who was re
markable for the vigor of her intellect and
the firmness of her resolution.
Mrs. Washington was left in early life a
widow, with the burden of a young and
large family, and to the task of guarding
and governing them she unselfishly devoted
herself. She was a woman of much busi
ness ability, for her farm she managed with
great skill and with profitable results. Tra
dition says she was rather inaccessible and
somewhat exclusive, for she was in no sense
a society woman. Mrs. Washington was in
tensely religious, a consistent member of
St. George s Episcopal Church, and very
charitable to the poor. Her hospitable home
92 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
was always open to her friends, among
whom was Hugh Mercer, who was a fre
quent visitor there.
When Washington found himself the lau
rel-crowned hero of the new Eepublic, he
came first to pay his homage and filial de
votion to his revered mother. On that visit
he was accompanied by Lafayette and a
number of other distinguished military
men. She received him as a devoted moth
er should receive a dutiful son. In that
reception Washington the hero, to her, had
no part. She was proud of her great son,
proud because of his greatness, but prouder
still, no doubt, as she remembered her part
in making that son great.
He escorted her to the Peace Ball before
mentioned. At nine o clock she said it was
time for old people to go home, and she
Washington sent a special messenger to
his mother, it is said, to give her the glad
tidings of the surrender of Cornwallis. An
old gentleman once told the writer of this
brief memoir that when that messenger
dashed up the deserted streets of Freder-
icksburg a Mr. Keiger, then a very young
but precocious boy, was urged by some
older ones standing on the street corner to
go up to Madam Washington and get the
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 93
news. Keiger went ; Mrs. Washington was
in her garden ; he watched and waited until
she had opened the letter with a pair of
scissors attached to her waist by a cord,
then turning, she said, "My young man,
what is it you want?" He told her. She
said, "Tell the gossips that George has
sent me word that Lord Cornwallis has sur
rendered at Yorktown."
Lafayette, on his visit, called on the
mother of his illustrious chief; he wrote
home to France quite a lengthy account of
that visit. Mrs. Washington met him at
the door of her residence; he introduced
himself. Walk right in, said the Madam.
"I am glad to see you, for George has told
me all about you." He was ushered into
the parlor, and refreshed the inner man
with her home-made ginger cake and her
home-brewed rum punch ; and he went from
that simple country home declaring that he
was glad to say he had seen in her a splen
did old Virginia matron.
In appearance, Mrs. Washington was of
medium height, and rather stout in her old
age, but carried herself with great dignity.
For a number of years she suffered from
a very painful disease. On August 25, 1789,
she died. In her last illness she was at
tended by Doctors Mortimer and Hall. The
94 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
funeral ceremonies were held in St.
George s Episcopal Church, August 28,
1789. On the day of the funeral all busi
ness was suspended in the town ; the church
bells tolled. The whole population wended
its way solemnly and reverently to pay its
last sad tribute to the memory of a friend
and neighbor. She was buried on the Ken-
more farm, then owned and occupied by
her daughter, Mrs. Fielding Lewis, in a
spot she herself had selected for that
purpose, near what are now known as
the Oratory Rocks, where she frequently
sat with her grandchildren and read her
When the sad tidings of her death was
conveyed to Congress, resolutions of sym
pathy for President Washington, and a
tribute to her memory, were passed. This
deeply touched Washington, who respond
ed in a note of thanks, adding : " I attribute
all of my success in life to the moral, intel
lectual and physical education which I re
ceived from my mother/ No grander
tribute was ever paid by a great man to
his mother than that, and the world, well
knowing how much was accomplished by
him, can readily pay its homage to the
memory of this great and good woman,
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 95
"Methinks we see thee as in olden time,
Simple in garb, majestic and serene,
Unmoved by pomp and circumstance,
Inflexible, and with a Spartan zeal
Expressing vice, and making folly
In 1833 the erection of a monument over
the grave of this most illustrious of Ameri
can women was commenced, but never com
pleted. Congress was importuned, but
failed to act, although it had promised in
1789, by solemn resolution, to build a mon
ument to mark the spot where sleeps the
mother of Washington.
On October 21, 1889, the following appeal
was made by the wife of this writer:
"AN APPEAL IN BEHALF OF THE MARY
"Amid great pomp and ceremony the
corner-stone of the monument to the mem
ory of Mary Washington, the mother of
The Father of this Bepublic, was laid in
1833. The erection of the monument over
the grave of this most illustrious of Ameri
can women was voluntarily undertaken by
a philanthropic and patriotic citizen, Silas
96 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
Burrows, of New York. Mr. Burrows died
before its completion. It is now in an un
finished and dilapidated condition.
* Congress has been again and again ap
pealed to and importuned. Favorable leg
islation has been promised, but this incom
plete monument crumbles and decays. Shall
the memory of the mother of the great
Washington longer be neglected? In every
State of this Union monuments mark with
emphasis the veneration with which George
Washington is held by a grateful republic,
and at the Capitol of the nation there is
one that towers above all the rest; but no
where is there recognition made of the
mother. Her very grave at this place is
marked only by an unsightly pile of marble.
Shall this neglect continue?
"Mrs. Washington was an uncommon
woman. It is recorded of her that she
was of strong will, splendid judgment, un
tiring energy, and without pretension, and
from these elements she molded her great
son, taught him to become great, equipped
him with attributes essential to great
"She lived, during the Eevolutionary
War, in Fredericksburg ; died, and was bur
ied here at the spot she herself had selected
for that purpose. Shall the grave of Mary
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 97
Washington be allowed to remain longer
in a condition which is the reminder of the
forgetfulness, rather than the gratitude, of
our people? Remember that the grave of
Washington himself is held as a very Mecca
to which all liberty-loving people can make
their pilgrimage the work of the faithful
and devoted women of this land. And it is
proposed that an organization shall at once
be formed, having for its object the erec
tion of a monument over the grave of
George Washington s mother at this
"Will the women of this Eepublic
respond to this appeal? Are they
not willing to undertake this patriotic
"To the end that steps may be immedi
ately taken, it is intended to obtain a
charter of incorporation of the Mary Wash
ington Memorial Association, to have a
president, one vice-president in each State,
and other usual and necessary officers, all
women. It is also suggested that the ladies
of America, on February 22, 1890, shall in
every State make some organized effort to
raise the necessary funds. The writer of
this requests that the papers give circu
lation to this appeal, and she will be glad
to hear from any ladies who desire to
98 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
take an active interest in this patriotic
"MRS. JOHN T. GOOLEICK.
"Fredericksburg, Va., Oct. 15, 1889."
In response, largely to that appeal, or in
part at least as a result of it, the National
Mary Washington Monument Association
was organized, composed of patriotic
women of America, and a stately, imposing
monument stands sentinel over the grave
of Mrs. Washington. On one side of it is
inscribed, "Erected by Her Country
women. " Just here it will not be irrele
vant to record an incident. A verdant
woman visited this monument and read
* Erected by Her Countrywomen. 9 " Thank
the Lawd!" she said, "that no city wimen
had nothing to do with this monument. " On
the other side of this splendid granite shaft
is inscribed in raised letters this epitaph :
"Mary, the Mother of Washington."
LODGE NO. 4, A. F. AND A. M. "
Past Master Bro. S. J. Quinn, of Fred
ericksburg, has compiled a very interesting
history of this Lodge. From it we find
that it was organized September 1, 1752. It
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 99
has had among its membership many good
men and true, many who became illustrious
besides George Washington, Hugh Mercer
and George Weedon, of whose membership
in that Lodge we have heretofore made
mention. Its records are quaint and curi
ous, and as an illustration of this, we ex
tract from its proceedings as follows :
"On December 19, 1755, it was resolved
by unanimous consent of the Lodge, that
the treasurer shall, at his discretion, pur
chase on account of this Lodge six lottery
tickets, and the numbers of them to be re
turned to the Lodge and made a minute
of. And tradition says that these tickets
were signed by the illustrious brother,
George Washington, who was president of
On April 15, 1769, "on motion of Broth
er Alexander Woodron, it was resolved,
that the Stewarts of this Lodge, for the
time being, shall for the future provide
liquors, candies, and all other necessaries
for the use of the Lodge. About this time
two demijohns, one called "Jachen," full
of Jamaica rum, and the other called
"Boaz," full of Holland gin, with an old-
fashioned loaf of sugar, were kept in the
ante-room for the refreshment of the breth
ren ; and tradition hath it, that some of the
100 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
brothers were content to tarry in the ante
room and never got any farther.
"On December 27, 1756, being the anni
versary of our Patron Saint John, the
Lodge assembled, attended by several vis
iting brothers, and went in procession to
the church, where we heard a most excel
lent sermon preached by our worthy Broth
er James Marye, after which we returned
in procession to the Lodge, where our wor
thy Master returned the thanks of the
Lodge to our worthy Brother James Marye
for so good a sermon.
"The Lodge being closed, the evening
was spent very agreeably with a Ball.
On the second Sunday in December, 1799,
after the death of General Washington,
Lodge No. 4 met in a Lodge of sorrow. The
Grand Master of Virginia, who was a mem
ber of that Lodge and citizen of Fredericks-
burg, Benjamin Day, made an address,
from which we quote in part :
"We are now, brethren, assembled to
pay the last sad tribute of affection and re
spect to the eminent virtues and exemplary
conduct that adorned the character of our
worthy deceased brother, George Wash
ington. He was early initiated in this ven
erable Lodge, in the mysteries of our an
cient and honorable profession, and having
General George Washington as a Mason and Member of
Lodge No. 4, A. F. and A. M., Fredericksburg, Virginia
OPPOSITE P. 100
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 101
held it in the highest and most just venera
tion, the fraternal attention we now show
to his memory is the more incumbent
After these memorial exercises in the
Lodge room, the Lodge went in procession
to St. George s Episcopal Church, where
religious services were held.
On Sunday, November 28, 1824, General
Lafayette, with his son, George Washing
ton Lafayette, and Colonel La Vassem, vis
ited that Lodge. Lafayette on this occasion
was made an Honorary Member, and in re
sponse to an address of welcome the Mar
"The pleasure I ever feel in our frater
nal meetings cannot but be enhanced by the
consideration, that in this city the first les
sons of childhood, and in this Lodge the
first lessons of Masonry, were conferred
upon the man who was first in all our
hearts. " * * *
This old Lodge has many valuable relics
and mementos of the old times; among
them, a portrait of Washington painted
from life by Sully, and the Holy Bible upon
which Washington, Mercer and Weedon
were obligated as Masons.
This historic Lodge, the Alma Mater in
Masonry of distinguished and illustrious
102 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
men, feels proud of its record, as well as
of its roll of honor ; for it has always been
faithful and true to the sacred principles
and tenets of the order, ever practicing
and proclaiming as its holy mission the ele
vation and ennoblement of mankind.
GENEALOGICAL NOTES ON THE DESCENDANTS
EEV. JOHN MERCER OF KINNELLAN
John Mercer 1 was minister of Kinnel-
lan in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, from 1650
to 1676, when he resigned (in June) be
cause of infirmity. He died August 7, 1677.
John Mercer of Kinnellan married Lilias
Row. She was the great-granddaughter of
John Row, the Reformer. (See The Scot
tish Nation by William Anderson, Vol. Ill,
The children of John Mercer (1) and
Lilias Row, his wife, were:
1. John Mercer 2. Baptized January
8, 1654, at Old Machar. Died young.
2. Agnes 2 (or Annas). Baptized Janu
ary 20, 1656. Polled, 1696, at Todlay, Par
ish of Alva.
104 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
3. Thomas Mercer 2. Baptized January
20, 1658. Polled, 1696. He was married
twice. His first wife was Anna Eaite. The
marriage contract is dated July 13, 1681.
His second wife was Isabel.
The children of THOMAS MEKCEK 2 (5)
1. Lilias Mercer 3. Polled 1696.
2. John Mercer 3. Polled 1696. Mar
ried Isabel Martin.
3. Margaret Mercer 3. Polled 1696.
4. Janet Mercer 3. Polled 1696. Mar
ried June 1, 1704, at Fyvie, to Robert Eait
5. Thomas Mercer 3. Baptized April
25, 1693. Polled 1696.
6. Christian Mercer 3. Baptized June
4, 1695. Polled 1696.
7. William Mercer 3. Baptized March
25, 1696. Married Anne, daughter of Sir
Eobert Munro of Foulis.
The children of John Mercer 3 (9) and
Isabel Martin, his wife, were :
1. Elizabeth Mercer 4. Baptized De
cember 10, 1710. Married Rev. James Wil
son, minister of Glowerie, May 27, 1735.
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 105
2. John Mercer 4. Baptized March 27,
3. Thomas Mercer 4. Baptized Octo
ber 17, 1721.
4. Isabel Mercer 4. Baptized June 15,
5. Agnes Mercer 4. Baptized May 20,
The children of WILLIAM MERGER 3 (14)
and ANNE MUNRO 3 (15), his wife, were:
1. Margaret Mercer 4. Baptized June
2. Hugh Mercer 4. Baptized January,
1726. Emigrated to America and married
Isabella Gordon of Virginia. Wounded at
Princeton, January 3, 1777, where he died
on January 12th of the same year.
3. Isabel Mercer 4. Baptized October
30, 1735. Married George Mercer of Marl
The children of GEN. HUGH MERCER 4
(23) and ISABELLA GORDON (24), his wife,
1. Anna Gordon Mercer 5. Married
Eobert Patton of Fredericksburg, Va. In
a letter from Mrs. Dunbar, who was Eliza-
106 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
beth Gregory Thornton, to her sister, Mrs.
Frances Thornton of Fall Hill, nee Miss
Innes, daughter of Judge Innes of Ken
tucky, she wrote of this marriage : * * But if
I go on so fast I will not have time to tell
you about Miss Ann Mercer s wedding.
Well, Polly and myself were drawn forth in
our best airs on the occasion, last Thursday
was a week, and saw Miss M. give her hand
to the delighted Mr. Patton. You may be
sure she looked infinitely lovely; her dress
was white satin and muslin; her necklace,
earrings and bracelets were very bril
2. John Mercer 5. Born 1772. Died
September 30, 1817.
3. William Mercer 5. Died unmarried.
He was deaf and dumb.
4. George Weedon Mercer 5. Died un
5. Hugh Tenant Weedon Mercer 5. He
was a child in arms at his father s death.
He was educated at the expense of the na
tion by act of Congress of 1793. He mar
ried Louisa Griffin 5, daughter of Judge
Cyrus Griffin by Lady Christina Stuart.
Col. Hugh Mercer 5 (31) was born in
Fredericksburg, August 4, 1776, died at
the " Sentry Box," Fredericksburg, De
cember 1, 1853. His wife, Louisa Griffin
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 107
Mercer 5 (32), died December 28, 1859,
aged 80 years. These dates are taken from
the tombs in the Masonic Cemetery in Fred-
THE DESCENDANTS OF EOBEKT PATTON AND
ANNE GORDON MERCER
EGBERT PATTON 5 (27) was a Scotchman.
He emigrated to Virginia some time before
the Revolutionary War, settled in Fred-
ericksburg, Va., and there married ANNE
GORDON MERCER 5 (26), only daughter of
GEN. HUGH MERCER 4 (23), about 1793, but
prior to November 25th of that year vide
will of General Weedon.
The children of Eobert Patton and Anne
Gordon Mercer 5 (26), his wife, were:
1. Robert Patton 6, a distinguished law
yer of Fredericksburg, Va. President of
Farmers Bank. He died, unmarried, at
about the age of thirty-five, in 1830, in
Spottsylvania County, Va.
2. Hugh Mercer Patton 6. Died un
married in 1846.
3. John Mercer Patton 6. Born August
10, 1797. Died October 29, 1858. He was
for many years the acknowledged leader of
the Richmond Bar, a Representative in
Congress from Virginia, and for a short
108 The life of General Hugh Mercer
time Governor of the State of Virginia. He
married on January 8, 1824, Margaret
French Williams 6, by whom he had twelve
4. Eleanor Anne Patton 6. Born ,
1805. Died June 24, 1890. She married on
March 24, 1825, John James Chew 6. Born
-, 1806. He was Clerk of Courts of
Fredericksburg. Died January 23, 1870,
at Fredericksburg, Va., and had six
5. William Fairlie Patton 6. Born
. Died . He married Harriet
Shepherd Buck 6 and had five children by
6. Margaretta L. Patton 6. Born ,
1810. Died July 2, 1852. She married, on
April 18, 1835, John Minor Herndon 6.
Born May 14, 1808. Died September 19,
1871, and had three daughters.
Robert Patton 5 (27). Died in 1827 or
See report of Commissioner Thomas D.
Ranson in suit of Patton s Exec, against
Patton s creditors in Circuit Court of Au
gusta County, Va., of 1871.
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 109
THE DESCENDANTS OF EGBERT PATTON AND
ANNE GORDON MERCER
The children of the HONOURABLE JOHN
MERCER PATTON 6 (35) and MARGARET
FRENCH WILLIAMS 6 (36), his wife, were:
1. Eobert Patton 7. Born October 10,
1824. Died, unmarried, June 13, 1876.
2. John Mercer Patton 7. Born May 9,
1826. He married first on November 11,
1858, Sallie Lindsay Taylor 7, daughter of
Alex. Taylor of Orange, Va. She died on
December 28, 1872. He married, second,
Lucy Agnes Crump, born April 29, 1846,
by whom he had two children, both girls.
Died on October 9, 1878.
3. Isaac Williams Patton 7. Born Feb
ruary 4, 1828. Died February , 1890.
He married Fanny Elizabeth Merritt 7 on
February 29, 1855. He held many promi
nent positions in New Orleans. There were
three sons by this marriage.
4. Lucy Anne Patton 7. Born Novem
ber 7, 1829. Died October 31, 1831.
5. Hugh Philip Patton 7. Born July 7,
1831. Died April 2, 1832.
6. George Smith Patton 7. Born June
26, 1833. Died September , 1864. He
settled as a lawyer in West Virginia, volun
teered in the late war between the States,
became a Colonel and was killed at the
110 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
battle of Winchester, near the close of the
war. He married Susan Glassell 7, Novem
ber 8, 1855, and had by her four children.
Mrs. Patton afterwards was married to
Col. George Hugh Smith of Los Angeles,
Cal. He was the son of the Eev. George
Archibald Smith of Alexandria, who mar
ried Ophelia Williams, sister of Margaret
French Williams. There were two chil
dren by this second marriage : a girl, Anne
Patton Smith, who married Hancock Ban
ning of Los Angeles ; and a boy, who died,
full of promise, quite young.
7. Waller Tazewell Patton 7. Born
July 15, 1835. Died July 21, 1863. He was
Colonel in the Southern Army and Senator
in the Virginia Legislature. He was mor
tally wounded at the Battle of Gettysburg,
July 3, 1863, and died a few days later, un
8. Mary Mercer Patton 7. Born April
14, 1837. Died August 29, 1841.
9. Eliza Williams Patton 7. Born
February 22, 1839. Married on Novem
ber 15, 1860, to John Gilmer 6, born
January 13, 1826, of Chatham, Va. He
died March 12, 1894. They had several
10. Hugh Mercer Patton 7. Born April
6, 1841. Married Fannie Bull 7, of Orange,
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 111
Va., on October 19, 1870. They had several
11. James French Patton 7. Born
September 19, 1843. Died while Judge of
the Supreme Court of West Virginia, at
Wheeling, on March 30, 1882. He married
on April 6, 1869, Melinda Caperton 7,
daughter of Senator Caperton of Union,
Monroe County, Va., and had by her two
12. William Macfarland Patton 7. Born
August 22, 1845. Died May 19, 1905. He
studied engineering, and while Professor
of Civil and Military Engineering at the
Virginia Military Institute, he married
Miss Annie Jordon on January 7, 1875, by
whom he had several children, all girls.
She afterwards married Judge Bingham of
the Supreme Court of District of Columbia.
The children of Col. Jno. Mercer Patton
7 (44) and Sally Lindsay Taylor 7 (45), his
first wife, were :
1. Jno. Mercer Patton, Junior, 8. Born
August 30, 1859. He married on June 28,
1890, Julia Mattern. They had two chil
a. Catherine 8. Born April, 1891.
b. Jno. Mercer Patton (9), Jr. Born
112 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
2. Alexander Taylor Pattern 8. Born
April 19, 1861. He married Miss Beatrice
Chandler of San Francisco in June, 1901.
Died November, 1904. No issue.
3. Sadie Lindsay Patton 8. Born Feb
ruary 7, 1863. She married on September
19, 1888, Capt. Arthur Jno. Hutchinson 8
(E. A.), who was born August 31, 1846.
Their children are:
a. Mary Lindsay Hutchinson 9. Born
August 4, 1890.
b. William Nelson Lindsay Hutchinson
9. Born December 7, 1892.
c. Arthur John Lindsay Hutchinson 9.
Born August 18, 1896.
4. George Tazewell Patton 8. Born
December 25, 1864. He was married on
December 10, 1890, to Virginia (Jennie)
King Pemberton 8. Born February 1,
1864. They have children:
a. Mary Pemberton Patton (9). Born
December 3, 1893.
b. William Eives Patton (9). Born May
c. George Tazewell Patton (9). Born
January 31, 1902.
5. James Lindsay Patton 8. Born No
vember 20, 1866. Married June 28, 1890,
to Fanny Kean Leake 8, daughter of Judge
W. J. Leake of Ashland, Va., and later of
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 113
Kichmond, Va. He was a minister of the
Episcopal Church and Missionary to
Japan. Their children are:
1. John Mercer Patton (9), Jr. Born
June 7, 1891. Died July 1, 1892.
2. Sadie Patton 9. Born July 5, 1893.
3. Martha Callis Patton 9. Born Octo
ber 5, 1896.
4. James Lindsay Patton 9. Born De
cember 13, 1900.
5. William Josiah Leake Patton 9. Born
July 28, 1902.
6. Fanny Leake Patton 9. Born March
7. Robert Williams Patton 8. Born
February 18, 1869. Married on January 1,
1900, Janie Slaughter Stringfellow. Born
August 15, 1876, daughter of Rev. Frank
Stringfellow of Raccoon Ford, Va., and
Emma Francis Green, born 1843, of Alex
andria, Va. Issue:
Alice Lee Patton 9. Bom July 25, 1901,
near the Meadows in Albernmrle County,
8. William Rives Patton 8. Born April
3,1871. Died May 29, 1897. Unmarried.
9. Alfred Slaughter Patton 8. Born
October, 1872. Died July 28, 1873.
114 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
THE DESCENDANTS OF ANNE GOKDON MERCER
AND ROBERT PATTON.
The children of Col. Jno. M. Patton (44)
and Lucy Agnes Crump, his second wife,
9. Susan French Patton 8. Born Sep
tember 11, 1884.
10. Agnes Parke Patton 8. Born Feb
ruary 19, 1887.
The children of Col. Isaac Williams Pat-
ton 7 (46) and Fanny E. Merritt 7 (47)
1. William Thomas Patton. Born
March 18, 1856. Died July 4, 1896.
2. Mary Mercer Patton. Born March 9,
1861. Died August , 1864.
3. George Tazewell Patton. Born No
vember 14, 1864.
4. Mercer Williams Patton. Born Oc
tober 26, 1867. Married.
THE DESCENDANTS OP EGBERT PATTON AND
ANNE GORDON MERCER
The children of George Smith Patton 7
(50) and his wife, Susan Thornton Glassell
7 (51), were:
George Smith Patton. He married Euth
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 115
Wilson of California. They have two chil
2. Ellen Thornton Patton. She mar
ried Tom Brown, Esq., of Los Angeles, Cal.
He died about 1895. They have three chil
3. Andrew Glassell Patton.
4. Susan Glassell Patton. Married 1904.
THE DESCENDANTS OF ROBERT PATTON AND
His WIFE, ANNE GORDON MERCER
The children of Eliza Williams Patton
7 (54) and John Gilmer 7 (55), her hus
1. John Patton Gilmer. Born Septem
ber 9, 1861. Married on October 16, 1895,
to Lucy Dabney Walker. Born October 10,
1872. They have one child.
2. William Wirt Gilmer. Born May 21,
3. Tazewell Gilmer. Born March 30,
4. Mary Eidgeway Gilmer. Born Au
gust 9, 1866.
5. Francis Walker Gilmer. Born May
23, 1868. Died November 7, 1879.
6. Mercer Williams Gilmer. Born De
cember 30, 1869. Unmarried.
7. James Carrington Gilmer. Born De
cember 7, 1871.
116 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
8. Lindsay Gilmer. Born July 7, 1873.
9. Isabel Breckinridge Gilmer. Born
December 26, 1879.
THE DESCENDANTS OF ROBERT PATTON AND
ANNE GOKDON MERCER
The children of Hugh Mercer Patton 7
(56) and Frances Dade Bull 7 (57) were :
1. Marguerita French Patton 8. Born
September 22, 1871. She married on June
9, 1895, George Harmer Gilmer 8, born
December 19, 1864, son of Judge George
Henry Gilmer of Chatham, Va. They live
in Lynchburg, Va. Issue :
a. Helen Mercer Gilmer 9. Born Janu
ary 8, 1896.
b. Rita Carrington Gilmer. Born July
2. Sally Lindsay Patton. Born Sep
tember 15, 1872. Died - -.
3. Frances Payton Patton. Born May
4. John Mercer Patton. Born January
5. Marie Louise Patton. Died in in
6. Mabel Blair Patton. Born June 27,
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 117
7. Helen Lee Patton. Born October ,
8. Marcus Bade Patton. Died in in
9. Clayton Lorenzo Patton. Born Au
gust 11, 1892. Died in infancy.
THE DESCENDANTS OF EGBERT PATTON AND
ANNE GORDON MERCER
James French Patton 7 (58). Married
Melinda Caperton (59) and had issue:
1. Harriet Echols Patton. Born Au
gust 25, 1870. Married 1903.
2. Allen Gilmer Patton. Born Decem
ber 1, 1871. Married 1903.
William Macfarland Patton 7 (66).
Married Annie Jordon 7 (61) and had
1. Sallie Taylor Patton. Born April
26, 1877. Married on August 28, 1905, at
Blacksburg, Va., Prof. - .
2. Margaret French Patton. Born Au
gust 13, 1878.
3. Virginia Mercer Patton. Born Sep
tember 21, 1880.
4. Nannie Maria Patton. Born July 6,
118 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
5. Agnes Lee Patton. Born September
6. Lucy Williams Patton. Born De
cember 20, 1886.
7. Elizabeth Jordan Patton. Born
January 1, 1876. Died July 13, 1876.
THE DESCENDANTS OF EGBERT PATTON AND
ANNE GORDON MERCER
The Chew Family
Eleanor Anne Patton 6 (37). Married
John James Chew 6 (38) of Fredericks-
burg, Va., who was for many years a Clerk
of the Courts of Fredericksburg, and had
issue as follows :
1. Anne Mercer Chew 7. Born Febru
ary 26, 1826. Died May 13, 1896. She mar
ried, on October 14, 1851, Frank Thornton
Forbes. Born January 11, 1826, and died
December, 1905, and had issue as follows :
The Forbes Family
a. John James Forbes 8. Born Septem
ber , 1852. Died May , 1855.
b. Sallie Innes Forbes 8. Born August
The life of General Hugh Mercer 119
c. James Fitzgerald Forbes 8. Born
July 14, 1856.
d. Eliza French Forbes 8. Born Sep
tember 19, 1858.
e. Ellen Patton Forbes 8. Born Novem
ber 25, 1860. Married Dr. William Wayne
Owens of Savannah, Ga., on . Issue:
William Duncan Owens 9. Born June 22,
/. Anne Mercer Forbes 8. Born Febru
ary 4, 1864.
The Chew Family.
Robert Stanard Chew, born October 3,
1828. Died August 17, 1886. Unmarried.
Succeeded his father as Clerk of the Courts
of Fredericksburg, graduated in n*edieine,
and was Colonel of the 30th Virginia Regi
ment, C. S. A.
3. Ellen Patton Chew. Born Septem
ber 17, 1837. Died May 22, 1896. Unmar
4. Hugh Patton Chew 7. Born Septem
ber . Died January 30, 1873. He mar
ried Bessie Bainbridge 7 on , and had
a. Eleanor Patton Chew 8. Born No
vember 13, 1868.
b. John James Chew 8. Born January
120 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
c. Bessie Mason Bainbridge Chew 8.
Born August , 1873. Died .
Mrs. Bessie Bainbridge Chew was mar
ried on , 18 , to William M. Grafton,
and now resides (May, 1899) at Sewickley,
near Pittsburgh, Pa.
The Crutchfield Family
5. Elizabeth French Chew 7. Born
June 13, 1843.
She married, on January 13, 1865, Edgar
Crutchfield (born March 1, 1840) of Fred-
ericksburg, Va., and had issue:
a. Eleanor Patton Crutchfield 8. Born
May 6, 1866.
She married, on November, , 1892,
Clement Bead Carrington 8, born July 25,
1854, and died , and had issue :
1. Abram Cabell Carrington 9. Born
January 26, 1894.
2. Elizabeth Crutchfield Carrington 9.
Born June 30, 1896.
b. Stapleton Crutchfield 8. Born Au
gust 24, 1868. Died .
He married on September 12, 1893, Mary
Lee Van House, born December 12, 1873,
and had issue by her :
1. Elizabeth Mercer Crutchfield 9. Born
March 18, 1895. Died July 7, 1896.
The life of General Hugh Mercer 121
2. Joy Mantlebert Crutchfield 9. Born
December 23, 1896.
c. Susan Gatewood Crutchfield 8. Born
December 23, 1870.
Married on October 24, 1895, to Daniel
Shriver Kussell 8, and had issue :
1. Elizabeth Mantlebert Kussell 9.
Born August 14, 1896.
2. Eleanor Blain Eussell 9. Born Oc
tober 26, 1898.
d. Anne Minor Crutchfield 8. Born Feb
ruary 14, 18. Died May 22, 1898.
e. Margaretta Taylor Crutchfield 8. Born
November 7, 1876.
/. Elizabeth French Crutchfield 8. Born
February 3, 1879.
Married Mr. John Minor Gatewood of
Boston, June 1, 1905.
g. Mercer Forbes Crutchfield 8. Born
August 15, 1881.
6. Margaretta Herndon Chew 7. Born
She married, on January 28, 1873, Ar
thur Taylor (born October 13, 1844) of
Fredericksburg, Va. They have issue as
122 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
a. Bobert Chew Taylor 8. Born October
b. Fanny Mackall Taylor 8. Born Oc
tober 4, 1881.
c. Margaretta Mercer Taylor 8. Born
April 15, 1885.
The children of William Fairlie Patton 6
(39) and Harriet Shepherd Buck 6 (40)
1. Anthony Patton 7. Born . Died
January 21, 1905.
He married Virginia Bernard Coakley
on , 18 . No issue.
2. Mary Patton 7, twin of the above.
Born . Died .
She married Eichard Henry Catlett 7,
born , of Staunton, Va. They have
3. William Fairlie Patton 7. Died .
4. . Died in infancy.
5. Anne Gordon Patton 7. Born .
She married, on , 18 , Gen. Jno.
Eogers Cooke. Born June 10, 1833. Died
April 10, 1891, and had eleven children.
6. Fairlie Preston Patton 7. Born
March 10, 1851.
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 123
He married Winnie T. Branham (born
April 18, 1853) on April 18, 1875. They
have five children.
The children of Mary Patton 7 (163) and
Richard Henry Catlett 7 (164) are :
1. Charles Catlett. Born August 18,
He married, on November 6, 1890, Eliza
beth Marye Hunton, daughter of James
Innis Hunton of Warrenton, Va., and had
issue by her as follows :
a. Lucy Hunton Catlett. Born Septem
ber 26, 1891.
b. Richard Henry Catlett. Born Octo
ber 19, 1892.
c. Elizabeth McNemara Catlett. Born
June 22, 1895.
2. Richard Henry Catlett. Born Novem
ber 27, 1868.
3. William Fairlie Catlett. Born Au
gust 8, 1871. Died November , 1872.
The Cooke Branch
The children of Anne Gordon Patton 7
(167) and Gen. Jno. Rogers Cooke 7 (168)
1. Jno. Rogers Cooke (8), Jr. Born
March 29, 1865.
124 The life of General Hugh Mercer
2. Fairlie Patton Cooke 8. Born May
Married October 26, 1904, to Miss Mary
Edmonia Rogers of Richmond, Va.
3. Ellen Mercer Cooke 8. Born .
She married, on November 14, 1895, Aus
tin Brockenbrough 8. Born April 18, 1862,
and had issue:
a. Austin Brockenbrough. Born July 6,
b. Anne Gordon Brockenbrough. Born
April 27, 1903.
4. Philip St. Geo. Cooke 8. Born No
vember 3, 1871.
5. EstenCookeS. Born March 10, 1873.
Died , 1873.
6. Wilt Cooke 8. Born March 10, 1873.
Died , 1873.
7. Rachel Cooke 8. Born June 16, 1874.
8. Harriet Shepherd Cooke 8. Born Au
gust 10, 1876. Married, on March 27, 1900,
to Mr. William Jefferson Wallace. Born
, 18 . Issue: Virginia Gordon Wal
lace. Born March 12, 1903.
9. Nanny Gordon Cooke 8. Born Octo
ber 5, 1878. Married, on October 24,
1905, Stafford A. Parker, of Richmond,
10. Stuart Cooke 8. Born December 8,
1879. Married, on January 22, 1903, to
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 125
Miss Martha Ann Lundy (born July 18,
) of Bichmond, Va.
The children of Fairlie Preston Patton 7
(169) and Winnie T. Branham 7 (170) are:
1. Fairlie Clifton Patton. Born Decem
ber 4, 1876.
2. Sterling Hume Patton. Born De
cember 19, 1878. Died December 28, 1878.
3. Eobert Antony Patton. Born De
cember 13, 1879.
4. Mary Alice Patton. Born May 8,
5. Eugenie Virginia Patton. Born April
6. William Henry Patton. Born Decem
ber 22, 1887.
7. John Mercer Patton. Born Febru
ary 9, 1891.
8. Winnie Baidie Patton. August 6,
9. Hugh Peyton Patton. October 26,
The Herndon Family
The children of Margaretta Patton 6
(41) and John Minor Herndon 6 (41) were :
1. Ellen Mercer Herndon 7. Born April
29, 1836. Died January 29, 1888.
126 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
2. Nanny Gordon Herndon 7. Born
, 1838. Died August 1, 1862.
3. Elizabeth Fairlie Herndon 7. Born
, 1841. Died January 3, 1892.
She married, on , 18 , Seth Barton
French 7 (born October 5, ), who is a
prominent financier in the city of New
York. They had three children :
a. Margaretta Patton French 8. Born
July 25, 1857. Died November 30, 1878.
b. John Herndon French. Born August
He married, on November 14, 1888,
Sarah Ann Spies Cockrane 8 (born Febru
ary 18, 1865), by whom he has children:
1. Seth Barton French, Jr. Born Au
gust 17, 1889.
2. Hilah Cockrane French. Born Janu
ary 28, 1891.
3. Ellen Mercer French. Born March
4. John Herndon French, Jr. Born
February 26, 1898.
c. George Barton French 8. Born Feb
ruary 12, 1864.
Married Adela Lesher on April 29, 1886.
He next married Miss of Denver.
d. Nannie Gordon French 8. Born
March 25, 1866.
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 127
She married, on April 21, 1885, Charles
Steele 8 (born May 5, 1857), who is a mem
ber of the firm of J. P. Morgan & Co.,
bankers, New York City. They have
a. Eleanor Herndon Steele 8. Born July
b. Nancy Gordon Steele 9. Born Octo
ber 11, 1894.
c. Catheryn Nevitt Steele. Born March
THE DESCENDANTS OF COL. HUGH MEKCEE
AND LOUISA GRIFFIN
The children of Col. Hugh Mercer 5 (31)
of the "Sentry Box," Fredericksburg,
Va., and Louisa Griffin 5 (32), his wife,
1. Hugh Weedon Mercer 6. Born No
vember 27, 1808. Died June 9, 1877. He
settled in Savannah, Ga. Married, first,
Mary Stiles Anderson 6 (born September
17, 1812; died February 3, 1855) of Savan
nah, Ga., on February 5, 1834, and had by
her six children. He married, second, Mrs.
George A. Cuyler 6 (nee Steenberger) of
Virginia, and had one child, a daughter.
He was Major-General in the Confeder
acy, and died at Baden-Baden, Germany.
2. George Weedon Mercer 6. Born
128 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
January 3, 1816. Died September 9, 1858,
3. Julia Weedon Mercer 6. Born .
Died December 10, 1883.
She married, on May 12, 1825, Dr. Eob-
ert Page Waller 6 (born - ; died July 21,
1872) of Williamsburg, Va., and had issue.
4. John Cyrus Mercer 6. Born at Fred-
ericksburg, May 12, 1810. Died March 26,
1884. He practiced medicine in Williams-
burg, Va.; was appointed Surgeon in the
U. S. Navy; resigned; appointed Surgeon
in the Confederate States Navy; with the
Marine Hospital, Norfolk.
He married Catherine Waller 6, died
May 24, 1892, daughter of Dr. Eobert Page
Waller, and had issue.
5. Louisa Mercer 6. She married Rev.
Dr. John Leyburn 6, a Presbyterian min
ister. Born - . Died - . No issue.
Miss Julia Weedon Mercer was the sec
ond wife of Dr. E. P. Waller, his first wife
being Eliza Corbin Griffin.
The children of Gen. Hugh Weedon Mer
cer 6 (211) and Mary Stiles Anderson 6
(212), his first wife, are:
1. George Anderson Mercer 7. Born
February 9, 1835.
He married, on October 23, 1861, Nanny
Maury Herndon 7 (died June 16, 1885) of
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 129
Fredericksburg, Va., daughter of Dr. Bro-
die Herndon, and by her had issue :
1. Nannie Herndon Mercer 8. Born
January 8, 1866.
She married, on April 24, 1889, Joseph
Muir Lang 8 (born February 4, 1861) and
has issue :
a. George Mercer Lang. Born July 13,
2. George Anderson Mercer. Born
March 2, 1868.
He married, on April 19, 1892, Mary
Walter 8 of Savannah, Ga. (born October
8, 1872), and has issue:
a. George Anderson Mercer. Born Feb
ruary 7, 1893.
b. George Walter Mercer. Born April
3. Lewis Herndon Mercer 8. Born
March 4, 1870. Settled in New York.
4. Eobert Lee Mecrer 8. Born Novem
ber 24, 1871.
He married, on October 27, 1896, Kath-
erine Mackay Stiles 8 of Cartersville, Ga.
Born April 29, 1870.
5. Edward Clifford Anderson Mercer 8.
Born November 13, 1873.
He married, on June 8, 1898, Josephine
Freeland 8 of Charleston, S. C. Born
March 4, 1875.
130 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
6. Hugh Weedon Mercer 8. Died in in
fancy, February 3, 1871. Born August 25,
7. Brodie Herndon Mercer 8. Born
, 1876. Died in infancy, June 13, 1878.
3. Hugh Weedon Mercer 7. Born
March 3, 1846. Died June 7, 1847.
2. William Gordon Mercer 7. Born
May 26, 1843. Died November 26, 1844.
4. Eobert Lee Mercer 7. Born July 10,
5. Mary Stuart Mercer 7. Born Janu
ary 12, 1842.
She married, on February 5, 1863, Gen
eral Henry Harrison Walker of Sussex
County, Va. (born October 15, 1833), and
has issue. General Walker s father was
John Harrison Walker of Sussex County,
Va., and his mother was Marie Louise Car-
gill, also of Sussex County. They had ten
children, of whom General Walker was
6. Georgia Anderson Mercer 7. Born
September 6, 1851. Died December 5, 1878.
She married, on January 15, 1874, Eob
ert Ap thorp Boit of Boston, Mass. (Born
April 29, 1846.) She died at the birth of
her second child, leaving two daughters.
1. Mary Anderson Mercer 8. Born
September 5, 1877.
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 131
2. Georgia Mercer 8. Born November
The child of Gen. Hugh Weedon Mercer
6 (211) and Mrs. George A. Cuyler 6 (nee
Bessie Steenberger) (213), his second
wife, is :
The children of Gen. Henry H. Walker 7
(251) and Mary Mercer 7 (250) are:
1. Mary Mercer Walker 8. Born May
She married, on September 17, 1890,
George Evelyn Harrison 8 of Brandon-on-
2. Louise Cargill Walker 8. Born Sep
tember 25, 1869.
3. Henry Harrison Walker 8. Born
January 11, 1872.
4. Hugh Mercer Walker 8. Born April
5. Alice Stuart Walker 8. Born Novem
ber 24, 1877.
She married, on January 7, 1899, Edwin
A. Stevens Lewis of Castle Point, Hobo-
ken, N. J.
The children of Dr. Eobert Page Waller
6 (216) and Julia Weedon Mercer 6 (215)
132 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
1. Hugh Mercer Waller 7. Born De
cember, 1829. Died May 30, 1896.
2. Laura Page Waller 7. Born July 31,
She married, on October 15, 1846, Dr.
William Sylvanus Morris 7 of Lynchburg,
Va. (born March 17, 1821; died December
20, 1893), and had issue:
3. Louisa Mercer Waller 7. Born Feb
ruary 7, 1826. Died October 30, 1856. She
married Captain J. B. Cosnahan of South
Carolina 7 (born 1821, died 1862) on ,
1843, and had issue :
4. Julia Weedon Waller 7. Born No
vember 23, 1836. Died October 30, 1860.
5. Isabella Stuart 7. Born 1833. Died
May 15, 1855.
Kate Page Waller 7. Born November
She married, on July 3, 1861, Charles
Scott Langhorne 7 (born January 23, 1836;
died March 31, 1896).
(Issue: page 95 of Notebook of Mercer
The children of Dr. William Sylvanus
Morris 7 (280) and Page Waller 7 (279)
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 133
1. Mary Mercer Morris. Born .
She married, on , Mr. Nowlin of
2. Charles Morris.
3. Eobert Page Waller Morris. He
Judge of United States District Court of
Minnesota, appointed by President Roose
velt, and late Member of Congress from
4. John Speed Morris 8.
He married, on February 19, 1882, Pattie
Cary Kean 8 (born April 11, 1858) and had
a. Robert Morris 9. Born , 1883.
b. Mary Randolph Morris 9.
c. Page Waller Morris 9. Born July 1,
d. William Sylvanus Morris 9. Born
May 6, 1888.
5. Lou Belle Morris 8.
She married, first, Mr. Langhorne of
Lynchburg, and had issue:
She married, second, on , Robert
Stanard 8, and left issue:
1. Virginia. Born .
2. . Born .
134 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
The children of J. B. Cosnahan 8 (282)
and Louisa Mercer Waller 8 (281) are:
1. Eoberta Ould Cosnahan 9. Born
April 29, 1844.
She married, on December 25, 1871,
Charles Camm 9, born April 18, 1844, and
had issue living :
Florence Waller Camm. Born March 9,
Edward Camm. Born February 28, 1876.
Louise Page. Born September 2, 1879.
3. Mary Mercer Cosnahan 9. Born Oc
tober 5, 1850.
She married, on December 22, 1869, Prof.
Thomas Jeffres Stubbs 9 of William and
Mary College (born September 14, 1841),
and had issue living :
a. Annie Waller Carter Stubbs 10. Born
January 7, 1872.
fc. J. T. Stubbs, Jr., 10. Born December
c. Lucy Talioferro Conway Stubbs. Born
October 11, 1882.
d. Mary Mercer Stubbs. Born June 1,
The children of Dr. John Cyrus Mercer
6 (217) and Mary Catherine Waller 6 (218)
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 135
1. Eobert Page Mercer 7. Died in in
2. Mary Louisa Mercer 7. Born June
She married, on January 3, 1867, Eev.
Daniel Blain 7 (born November 20, 1838)
of the West Hanover Presbytery, Va., and
had issue :
3. Eliza Christina Mercer 7.
She married, on November 26, 1861, Dr.
Beverly St. George Tucker 7 (born ;
died December, 1896), and had issue :
4. Thomas Hugh Mercer 7. Born in
1845. Died 1864. Unmarried. Lieutenant
G. S. A.
5. Corbin Waller Mercer 7. Born April
He married, on November 25, 1885, Fan
nie Burwell Nelson 7 (born July 16, 1848),
daughter of William Nelson of Yorktown,
second grandson of Governor Nelson, and
6. Catherine Stuart Mercer 7. Born at
She married, on November 26, 1873, Wil
liam Stuart Wall (died in Durham, N. C.,
1891), and had issue:
7. John Leyburn Mercer 7. Born Au
gust 2, 1849.
He married, on March 31, 1875, Jean Sin-
136 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
clair Bright 7 (born December 20, 1850),
daughter of Samuel Bright of Williams-
burg, and had issue :
8. Blakely Carter Mercer 7. Died in in
9. Eobert Page Mercer 7.
He married Sally Tourman 7, and they
10. Isabella Stuart Waller Mercer 7.
Born September 29, 1858. She married on
October 18, 1888, Charles McGary 7 (born
November 12, 1858), of Durham, N. C., and
have issue. Charles McGary was son of
Captain P. McGary of the U. S. Navy, and
was born in Buenos Ayres.
2. George Weedon Mercer 7. Born
June 4, 1863.
He married Elizabeth Butterworth 7
(born September 9, 1872) on January 5,
1893, and has issue :
The children of Rev. Daniel Blain 7 (328)
and Mary Louisa Mercer 7 (327) are:
1. Rev. John Mercer Blain 8. Born
April 30, 1869.
He went as a missionary to China and
there married, on August 24, 1897, Claude
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 137
Lacy Grier 8 of North Carolina. They have
a. Daniel Blain 9. Born December 17,
b. Mary Grier Blain. Born October 27,
c. Margaret Gary Blain. Born October
2. Randolph Harrison Blain 8. Born
January 12, 1871. Married Jean Throck-
morton Forman, August 23, 1899. Issue:
(1) Mary Louise. Born August 14, 1900, at
Coresville, Va. (2) Stanton Forman. Born
in Louisville, Ky., July 22, 1902.
3. Samuel Stuart Blain 8. Born Octo
ber 18, 1872.
4. Hugh Mercer Blain 8. Born Decem
ber 26, 1874. Married, at Waynesboro, Va.,
Mary Moore Winston, June 26, 1901. Is
sue: (1) Elizabeth Winston. Born Novem
ber 28, 1902, (2) Hugh Mercer. Born Au
gust 14, 1905.
5. Daniel Blain 8. Son of Eev. Daniel
Blain and Mary Louise, his wife, nee Mer
cer. Born November 23, 1877. Died Octo
ber 28, 1879.
6. Robert Waller Blain 8. Born June
7. Gary Randolph Blain 8. Born March
138 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
The children of Dr. Beverly St. G.
Tucker 7 (330) and Eliza Christina Mercer
7 (329) are:
1. John Speed Tucker 8.
2. Dr. Beverly Tucker 8.
3. Eliza Christina Tucker 8. Born .
4. St. George Tucker 8.
5. Hugh Mercer Tucker 8.
6. Henrietta Elizabeth Tucker 8.
The issue of Corbin Waller Mercer 7
(332) and Hannie Burwell Nelson 7 (333)
1. William Nelson Mercer 8. Born Sep
tember 27, 1888. Died April 2, 1889.
2. Waller Nelson Mercer 8. Born No
vember 3, 1891.
The children of William Lewis Wall 7
(335) and Catherine Stuart Mercer 7 (334)
1. Mary Stuart Wall 8. Born Decem
ber 17, 1875.
She married, on June 1, 1898, William
Guthrie 8 (born January 12, 1874).
The Life of General Hugh Mercer 139
2. Catherine Mercer Wall 8. Born
March 7, 1882.
3. William Lewis Wall, Jr., 8. Born
September 21, 1887.
The children of John Leyburn Mercer 7
(336) and Jean Sinclair Bright 7 (337) are:
1. Jean Christine Mercer 8. Born De
cember 23, 1875.
2. Mary Waller Mercer 8. Born Octo
ber 13, 1877.
3. Thomas Hugh Mercer 8. Born No
vember 6, 1879.
4. John Leyburn Mercer 8. Born Octo
ber 11, 1881. Died July 16, 1882.
The issue of Eobert Page Mercer 7 (340)
and Sally Tourman 7 (341) is:
1. Hugh Mercer 8. Born August 4,
1893. Died October, 1904.
The issue of Charles McGary 7 (343) and
Isabella Stuart Waller Mercer 7 (342) are:
1. . Born September 17, .
Died before being named.
2. Mary Mercer McGary. Born Janu
ary 29, 1891.
140 The Life of General Hugh Mercer
3. Annie Bell McGary. Born February
4. Isabel Stuart McGary. Born March
The issue of George Weedon Mercer 7
(344) and Bessie Butterworth 7 (345) is:
1. Linden Waller Mercer 8. Born Au
gust 19, 1893. Died June 2, 1896.
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DEC gu 1988
UC SANTA CRUZ
THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA LIBRARY