Once the migration route is established, many families travel the same path, stopping at the same stops–for a month’s rest, a year’s rebuilding of resources, a generation, a lifetime.
Military Migrations. Troop movements during the Revolutionary War took soldiers into areas where the soil was fertile and the opportunity for profitable agriculture or establishing a family estate of considerable size appeared to be excellent.
Soldiers from Virginia, who accompanied General John Sullivan into central New York, later migrated in wagon trains to take up lands in the Finger Lakes Counties. The Illinois Expedition under George Rogers Clark discovered the potential of land in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, and Illinois . Shortly after the war, Virginians trooped West to take advantage of these lands.
The award of bounty land to those who served in the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 also sparked migration–by soldiers or their heirs who took up lands they had earned or inherited and by restless Americans who purchased military land warrants or who went along to better their condition.
Reservations for the War of 1812 were set aside in Illinois, Missouri, and Arkansas. The Clark Grant in eastern Indiana along the Ohio line included claims of the men in the Illinois Expedition. Most bounty map lands omit this grant area.
Bounty lands were also awarded for French and Indian War military service to Virginians in northern North Carolina along the Virginia line. In Botetourt County and its extended boundaries. Both sides of the Ohio River in Kentucky and Ohio–where General Patrick Carnes was awarded over 12,000 acres, which were still in the possession of Carnes/Kerns descendants in 1976.
DAR applications reveal migration patterns both in the movements of the soldier and his family members as well as the locations of descendants who joined the Society. For example, a large portion of those applying from Arkansas have ancestors who fought from Maryland. Applications in Illinois include veterans from Tennessee and Virginia.
Your favorite Virginia genealogist, Arlene Eakle http://www.arleneeakle.com
PS Watch for Part IV and the finale. Very soon, I will complete a new Conference session devoted to migrations in Virginia exclusively. Plan to attend–the handout alone will be owrth the cost of admission to the seminar.