21 October 2008

The Bones of Edward Boone - Fact or Fiction

The 58th Edition Carnival of Genealogy has been posted over at Jasia's Creative Gene . The theme for this carnival was to write a story about or involving one of our ancestors and the story could be true or purely fiction. My submission, "Believe it or Not" , was a story about my 5th great grandfather Richard Thomas and how he found the bones of Edward Boone (brother of the famous Daniel) and re-interred them in his church cemetery.

Now that the Carnival has been posted, I am to reveal whether My story is fact or fiction. I am pleased to tell you that it is absolutely true!

In a newspaper article - "Circumstances Surrounding The Death And Burial Of Edward Boone, Brother Of Famed Frontier Explorer", by Edna Talbott Whitley, The Kentuckian-Citizen, December 12, 1958 - it tells us of over 30 men who went with Daniel Boone the day after his brother's death to bury his body on the site he was killed. Several of these men gave depositions to attest to this fact and can be found in the Draper Manuscripts.

But, the primary source document for Edward Boone’s reburial in the Rockbridge Graveyard is a manuscript taken by 19th Century historian Lyman Draper. In an interview, held about 1851 in Columbia, Missouri, William T. Wilson, native of Bourbon County, Kentucky and son of Capt. Henry Wilson [my 5th great grandfather], describes the event to Draper.
Wilson, according to Draper, was "long familiar" with the Boone Creek area. Wilson was in a position to know about Elder Thomas reburying Edward Boone. Wilson's brother, Lewis Wilson, married Elder Richard Thomas’s daughter, Sarah A. Thomas. This makes William T. Wilson either a primary source (eye witness to the event) or a very credible secondary source.

[Lewis Wilson and Sarah Anderson Thomas are my 4th great grandparents]
In the interview, Wilson draws a plat locating the Rockbridge Baptist Church in relation to Boone Creek and describes what happened:

"Millersburg, Ky is some 8 miles below the mouth of Boone’s Creek – a half mile yet higher up the creek to the spring where Edward Boone was buried. The Upper Blue Licks are about 15 miles from Boone’s Lick & the Lower Blue Licks about 20 miles distant. About 1827, the bones of Edward Boone became exposed to view where they were buried, in the road, by the washing of water, near the bank of the creek & close to the spring, & the Rev. Richard Thomas had them removed and reinterred a mile off in the Rockbridge Baptist Church Yard."


  1. Yea! I won.

    Actually, my husband told me the story. He amazes me with the things he knows.


  2. Edward Boone is my 6th generation great grandfather. This is good to know!

  3. I'm with Lee on this. I'm a direct descendent of Edward too and it's a good story to add to the family tree. Thanks to your ancestors for treating ours with such care and respect!

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.