from King's Mountain and Its Heroes by Lyman C. Draper
[Colonel John Sevier]. . .was born, September twenty-third, 1745. . . .before he had turned of seventeen, he married Miss Sarah Hawkins, cleared up a farm, and engaged in excursions against the Indians--on one occasion, he and his party narrowly escaping a fatal ambuscade by a timely discovery of the trap their enemies had set for them. He laid out the village of New Market, and there for some time he kept a store and inn, and carried on a farm; and then engaged in merchandizing in the neighboring village of Middletown. . . Late in 1773, John Sevier removed his family to the Holston country, and first located in the Keywood settlement, on the north shore of Holston, half a dozen miles from the Shelby's. Before his removal from Virginia, he had been commissioned a Captain by Governor Dunmore.
[During the Indian attack on the Watagua Fort]. . .was Catharine Sherrill, who when she reached the gate, found it shut; but equal to the emergency, she threw her bonnet over the pickets, and then clambered over herself, and, as she jumped within, was caught in the arms of John Sevier— her future husband.
. . .John Sevier was among the foremost in the defence of the Watauga and Nolachucky settlements. He had been elected Clerk of the first self-constituted court in 1775; and, in 1776, he was chosen one of the representatives of the united settlements to the North Carolina Convention at Halifax, and took his seat, securing the establishment of the district of Washington. Hastening back home, he reached there in season to serve on Christians's expedition against the Cherokees at the head of a fine company of riflemen; and also, at Colonel Christian's request, he acted as a spy during the campaign. He continued his services, till the conclusion of the treaty at Long Island of Holston in July, 1777. In the fall of that year, he was appointed Lieutenant-Colonel for Washington County. During the period 1777-79, the Indians, Tories and horse-thieves required Colonel Sevier's constant vigilance. In the summer of 1780, he was left in defence of the settlements, while Major Charles Robertson led the Watauga troops on the campaign in South Carolina. During their absence, August fourteenth, having some time previously lost his wife, he was married to Miss Catharine Sherrill.
His gallant services at King's Mountain cannot be too highly extolled. December sixteenth following, he defeated the Cherokees at Boyd's creek, killing thirteen, and taking all their baggage, and then joined Colonel Arthur Campbell on an expedition against the hostile Indian towns. On the third of February, 1781, he was made a full Colonel; and in March, he led a successful foray against the Middle Cherokee Settlements, killing about thirty of their warriors, capturing nine prisoners, burning six towns, and bringing off about two hundred horses. . .
Having, in February, been appointed by General Green one of the Commissioners to hold a treaty with the Indians, a conference took place with the Cherokees at the Long Island of Holston in July, Colonel Sevier and Major [Josiah] Martin attending, but without any permanent results. In the autumn of this year, Colonel Sevier served under Generals Greene and Marion in South Carolina; and, in 1782, he carried on a campaign against the Cherokees.
In November, 1784, he was appointed Brigadier-General, which he declined because of his leadership in the effort to establish the republic of Franklin. During the period of 1784 to 1788, he was made its Governor and defender. He was apprehended by the North Carolina authorities, on a charge of rebellion against the State, and conveyed to Morganton, where he was rescued by a party of his friends; and returning home, "Chucky Jack" led a campaign against the Indians. As the East Tennesseans were divided in sentiment, the Franklin Republic, after a turbulent career of some four years, ceased to exist. In 1789, General Sevier was chosen a member of the Legislature of North Carolina, when an act of oblivion was passed, and he was re-instated as Brigadier-General. In 1790-91, he was elected to represent the East Tennessee district of North Carolina in Congress. When Tennessee was organized into a Territory, he was appointed by President Washington a Brigadier-General in the militia; and he continued to protect the frontier settlements, carrying on the Hightower campaign against the Cherokees in 1793. In 1798, he was made a General in the Provisional army.
On the organization of a State Government in 1796, General Sevier was chosen the first Governor, and by successive re-elections was continued in that office till 1801. In 1802, he served as a Commissioner in running the boundary line between Tennessee and Virginia. He again served as Governor from 1803 till 1809, and then a term in the State Senate. He was chosen to a seat in Congress in 1811, serving, during the war, on the important committee on military affairs, till 1815; when President Madison appointed him one of the Commissioners, to ascertain the boundary of the Creek territory, and died while on that service, in camp, on the east side of the Tallapoosa, near Fort Decatur, Alabama, September twenty-fourth, 1815, closing a busy, useful life at the age of seventy years. As a proof of the love and veneration of his neighbors and friends, while absent in the Creek country, they had again elected him to Congress without opposition. . .