General Joseph Martin Chapter

Cumberland Gap, TN


Cumberland Gap Patriot

Berry Cawood

 Berry Cawood was born in 1757 in Charles county Maryland. He was the grandson of Cherokee Chief Keyatory. Keyatory signed the Treaty of Lochabe in SC in 1770. In this treaty the Cherokees relinquished claims to land in present day Southwest West Virginia. His Cawood family was famous during England’s Civil war in 1643.
 In 1774, several families moved from Charles county MD moved to Southwest VA on promise of free land. Cawood’s family may have been apart of them. By 1778, Cawood’s family is living in Virginia. In June 1778, Cawood joined George Rogers Clark expedition to Kaskaskia. They arrived at the British Fort on July 4th 1778. Clark took the fort without firing a shot. At Kaskaskia they rang a bell that looks similar to the liberty Bell in Philadelphia PA. This bell at Kaskaskia is often called the liberty Bell of the west.
On February 4th, 1780, Cawood joined another of Clark’s expeditions, this time to Vincennes or Fort Sackville.  For 18 days, Cawood and Clark’s sharpshooters marched through deep snow and frozen terrain.  This march is often referred to as the Impossible March because no ordinary man could march in conditions such as this. Cawood was definitely no ordinary man. On February 23, Cawood arrived at Vincennes with Clark. Clark ordered the surrender of the fort. Col. Henry Hamilton, commander of the Fort refused. Clark then brought two Indians captured along the way to Vincennes and had the Indians killed in front of the British eyes. This terrified Hamilton so much he surrendered the fort without a shot. This made the second fort Clark would capture without a shot.
 By November 1780, Cawood was in Washington County VA. He soon married Nancy Scott. From this union they had 5 children. Cawood joined the Washington county militia and stayed in the militia from 1780-1796. In December 1780, Cawood would join Sevier on a march to the Cherokee capitol of Chota where he would burn it to the ground along with the Indian villages of Tellico and Hiawassee. Cawood would gain the reputation of a great Indian Fighter. It is ironic Cawood would fight the Cherokee with his grandfather being a chief.
 In 1800 Cawood moved to Blount County TN. By 1810, Cawood had moved to Knox county Kentucky. In 1820, Cawood moved to Kentucky near Samuel Howard. In 1825, Cawood moved near Martin Fork Lake. Even after moving to KY there were reports of Cawood still fighting Indians making it safe for other settlers to move to KY.  In 1836, Nancy Scott died and Cawood married Lucy Bailey. In 1848 at the age of 91 Cawood died and was buried in Cawood KY, a city named after him.
 During the Civil war, descendents of Cawood in Owsley county KY were killed by Union sympathizers. Owsley County sent more troops to the Union army than any other county in KY.
 In 1906, Three of Cawood’s descendents names appear on the Guion Miller Rolls. They received compensation from the federal government because their Cherokee ancestors were forced off of their land in 1837. Cawood’s descendents are scattered all over KY with a large concentration of them in Harlan and Bell County KY Region


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