General Joseph Martin Chapter

Cumberland Gap, TN


Cumberland Gap Patriot

George Hardwick

George Hardwick, KY frontiersman, one of the first settlers in Lawrence County KY, was born on August 31, 1759. In April 1777, Hardwick joined the VA militia in Bedford county Va.
     Hardwick was apart of the Virginia continental line when they left for Philadelphia Pa, where the upcoming battle of Brandywine would be fought. On September 9, 1777, The VA line arrived in Philadelphia. The Va line was positioned south of Chester Road and in the rear along brandy wine Creek. On September 11, 1777, the battle of Brandywine began.
      The Virginia line saw the most action around 2pm at the Birmingham meeting house. Here the Va line repulsed 5 British bayonet charges before forcing to retreat.  The Virginia line suffered a  54 percent casulty rate. The British sustained heavy casualties as well.
At dusk, the Virginia 4th  made a stand at Painters Crossing located in west Chester county Pa which allowed the  Americans to escape to  the Schuylkill River.
      On October 4,1777, Hardwick participated in the battle of Germantown. Pa.   The most significant part of this battle  involved the artillery shelling the chew House  or Clivine Mansion. the shelling was so great , Blood poured from some of the cannoner's ears.  A Lt. Bill Smith of the Virginia 11th regiment went into the Chew house to see if they wanted to surrender. The British refused to surrender because they feared the men under the command of Anthony Wayne who  they tried to massacre at Paoli Pa in September, 1777, one month earlier. One military analyst has said that Washington focused too much on the British in the Chew House and not enough on the British located in different area pockets around the Germantown region.
 Elsewhere around Germantown, the Virginia 9th was captured by Hessian soldiers transporting British Prisoners.  General Adam Stephens of the Virginia 4th Regiment cam riding into Germantown late  in a drunken stupor.  Stephens was unable to find the American line due to a thick  fog. Stephens hearing the American artillery barrage going on at Chew House thought that the American troops were being fired upon by the British when it was the other way around. Stephens ordered his men to fire in the direction of Chew House. This was the first friendly fire incident during the Revolutionary war. More Americans were killed by friendly fire than by the British. Stephens was later Court martialed for  this action.
     After Germantown, Hardwick was transferred to guard the prison  at Prince Edward County. In July 1781,  Tarleton of the British army would attack Prince edward county in order to free the British prisoners there. In  October 1781, Hardwick would participate in the battle of Yorktown.
      In 1782, Hardwick moved his family to Kentucky. In his journal, Hardwick talks about  going through the Cumberland Gap on his way to Boonesboro.  In August 1782, Hardwick participated in the battle of Blue licks, the last Revolutionary war battle fought in Ky. At Blue Licks, 180 Kentuckians were defeated by 350 Indians.  In November, 1782,  Hardwick was apart of George Rogers Clark expedition to Ohio. In Ohio, Clark burned 5 Indian Villages to the ground in retaliation of the Blue licks battle.
  In The 1820s, Hardwick moved to lawrence county Ky. In 1832, Hardwick applied for his revolutionary war pension. Hardwick  died in Lawrence county sometime in the 1840s. Hardwick was buried in Hardwick family cemetery in Donithaly Ky.
    During the Civil war, Lawrence County was mostly pro confederate. However most of Hardwick's descendents fought for the Union army. The only skirmish in Lawrence county involved the sinking of a transport barge.
Hardwick was a great soldier who fought in the last battles of Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Kentucky. Today, stands a monument in the Hardwick cemetery to honor this great patriot.

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