Our Patriot Ancestors
     . . . Biographical Sketches

R(ichard) Shirley

  Before joining William Phillips' Company in the summer of 1780, Richard Shirley served in Captain Thomas Paxton's Ranging Company, Bedford County Militia between 12 September 1776 and 13 November 1776.

  Richard Shirley was a son of William Shirley who was himself a Patriot of the American Revolutionary War. William Shirley, born in the 1730s, resided in the portion of Prince Georges County, Maryland that would later be erected into Frederick County. William married Margaret Johnson. The Shirley family moved northward into the region of Cumberland County that would become Bedford around 1768, and William's name was included on the Barre Township tax assessment return for the year 1769. William Shirley served in the Bedford County Militia and was listed as a court martial man for Captain John Shaver's Company, the Fourth Company, Third Battalion of the Bedford County Militia in 1777. In 1787, when Huntingdon County was erected out of Bedford, the William Shirley property came under the jurisdiction of the new county. On 2 September 1796, William sold his lands in Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania and moved to Scott County, Kentucky. William wrote out his will on 30 September 1799 and it was probated in 1805. At the time of his death, William Shirley was married to his second wife, Margaret (Johnson), the widow of William Johnson.

  William Shirley and his first wife gave birth to seven children. Richard was the third child and second son born to the couple. He was born in the year 1755 while the family was still residing in Frederick County, Maryland. In 1780, when he died in the massacre in Woodcock Valley, Richard Shirley would have been twenty-five years of age. About three years before, Richard married Rachael Moore. In the three short years of their marriage, Richard and Rachel gave birth to two children: Margaret, born in 1777 and William, born in 1780. Richard's name appeared on the 1779 tax assessment return for Hopewell Township. After Richard's death, Rachael remarried and did not settle Richard's estate until 1796.

  Margaret Shirley, the first child of Richard and Rachael, married Abraham Welch at Mason County, Kentucky. The couple then moved to Ohio and eventually to Monroe County, Indiana where Margaret died in 1847.

  William Shirley, born on 12 January 1780, just four months before his father was killed, married Jemima Taylor at Nicholas County, Kentucky. William and Jemima gave birth to nine children: Richard, Elizabeth, John L., William T., Rachel, Leason, Ruth, Mary and Levi. By 1830, the family were residing in Monroe County, Indiana. Jemima died in 1840 and William followed her in 1847.