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Nashville: blame it on the weasels

fort nashborough

Nashville! It’s not a bad city, really. If you stay away from the touristy bits and avoid Summers, it’s a nice enough town.

great grandma

My great great great great great grandparents led the first wave of white families to settle along the Cumberland River around the stockade fort pictured above (the original, not that replica) in 1779. Fort Nashborough was named after Francis Nash, a brigadier general killed in the Revolutionary War two years earlier. He and my grandfather were both North Carolinians and veterans of the War of the Regulators. Otherwise, the place would probably be called Weaselville, and that would have made it really hard to market as a vacation spot.

The next few decades, the story is all about clashes between the settlers and the Chickamauga band of Cherokees, so we’re hopelessly unable to talk sense about it. But, hey, Thanksgiving is the time for injun stories.

So here’s my great great great great grandmother. One day, a Cherokee band fired a single musket volley at the fort and fled, luring the men out into an ambush. Two hundred Indians got between twenty settlers and the fort. The settlers dismounted, and the Indians chased after their horses. Grandma saw an opportunity, opened the gates and set the dogs on them, buying enough time for the men to get back inside.

As someone remarked later, “thank God indians love horses and hate dogs” or no-one would have come home that day. My great great great great grandfather was born in that fort some time later. So, on the whole, hooray.

Remote-control pre-posted last Thursday, November 15. Poking around the online geneology sites trying to figure out if my Grandpa Willie was born before the Battle of the Bluffs, I’ve just discovered that I am actually related to my stepmother. Blood kin! (On my mother’s side — none of those jokes, please). Well. I think I need a moment to compose myself.

November 21, 2007 — 7:30 am
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