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William Marion Green (1753 - 1832)

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Major William Marion (Billy) Green
Born in Province of North Carolina, British Colonial Americamap [uncertain]
Husband of — married before in Orange Co., NCmap [uncertain]
Died in Bostic, Rutherford, North Carolina, United Statesmap
Green-8438 created 28 Sep 2013 | Last modified
This page has been accessed 2,293 times.

Categories: Green Name Study | Bostic, North Carolina | Battle of King's Mountain | Battle of Ramsour's Mill | US Southern Colonist | American Revolution Veterans.

US Southern Colonies.
Billy Green settled in the Southern Colonies in North America prior to incorporation into the USA.
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1776 Liberty Bell
Event years 1773-1789.
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Ancestor #: A201068
Service Description: 1) MILITIA[3]

DAR Ancestor Number A201068

William Green was born on May 16, 1753 in North Carolina, the son of Joseph Green and Mary (McEntire) Green. He was the brother of Ann (Green) McAfee, Abraham Green, Isaac Green, Mary O. (Green) Duncan, Jacob Green and Joseph Green .[4]

William married Drucillia "Drusy" McBrayer before 1775 in Orange County, North Carolina. They had the following children:[5]

  1. Henry Green,
  2. Abraham Green,
  3. Abner Green,
  4. Joseph Green,
  5. Charlotte Green,
  6. McBrayer Green,
  7. William Green,
  8. James L. Green and
  9. Unicey Green

Billy, like many men in the area, fought on both sides during the Revolutionary War. Though his mother and stepfather were strong Tories, Billy began service as a Patriot (Whig) Soldier. By 1780 he was a Captain in the Whig Militia but was captured by the Tories. They held him prisoner until he was freed during the Tory defeat at the Battle of Ramsaur's Mill. His only British service was at the Battle of King's Mountain. Here he was captured by the patriots and sentenced to death.

The story of his escape became a favorite of many historians:

About this time (26 Oct 1780) Capt. William Green and Lieutenant William Langum, among the Tory prisoners, were tried before Colonel Cleveland. The charge against Green seems to have been, that he had violated the oath he had taken as an officer to support the governments of the State of North Carolina and of the United States, by accepting a British commission, and fighting at King's Mountain. Some of the British officers were present, and remonstrated at the course taken, when Cleveland cut them short, saying: 'Gentlemen, you are British officers, and shall be treated accordingly -- therefore give your paroles and march off immediately; the other person is a subject of the State.' Green and Langum were condemned to be executed the next morning. 'May be so,' coolly remarked Green. "That night, as he and his comrade, Langum, were lying before the campfire, under a blanket, Green rolled over so that his hands, fastened with buckskin straps, came in contact with Langum's face, who seeming to comprehend his companion's intention, worked away with his teeth till he succeeded in unfastening the know. Green was now able to reach his pocket, containing a knife, with which he severed the remaining cords, and those of Langum. He then whispered to Langum to be ready to jump up and run when he should set the example. Green was above the ordinary size, strong and athletic. The guard who had special watch of them, was in a sitting posture, with his head resting upon his knees, and had fallen asleep. Making a sudden leap, Green knocked the sentinel over, and tried to snatch his gun from him; but the latter caught the skirt of the fleeing man's coat, and Green had to make a second effort before he could release himself from the soldier's grasp, and gladly got off with the loss of a part of his garment. In another moment both Green and Langum were dashing down a declivity, and though several shots were fired at them, they escaped unhurt, and were soon beyond the reach of their pursuers. Aided by the friendly wilderness, and sympathizing Loyalists, they in time reached their old region of Buffalo Creek, in now Cleveland County. Green at least renouncing his brief, sad experience in the Tory service, joined the Whigs, and battle manfully thereafter for his country. Both Green and Langum long survived the war, and were very worthy people.[6]

According to notes by A. B. C. DePriest, Griffins' History of the Revolutionary War recounts the escape by William Green after the Battle of Kings Mountain, but his companion was a man named Mills from Rutherford County.

After his escape, he enlisted in Captain Levi Johnston's company under Sumter for ten months in 1781 and 1782. During this service he fought for the patriots in the Battle of Eutaw Springs.

After the war Billy returned to Rutherford county. His British service did not go unpunished. Like many men in the area, he had to face a Grand Jury in July 1782 as one of the men who " 'aided and joined' the army of Major Ferguson and are convicted as Tories 'a true bill'." All his land was confiscated by the new government. After the Confiscation Act was repealed a short time later, Billy and many of the other men had their property restored to them.

When the aftermath of the war was over, Billy prospered and increased his land holdings in the Brushy Creek area of Rutherford County. By 1790 he also owned 5 slaves, which put him among the more prosperous men in the area. He and his family were active members of the Sandy Run Baptist Church in Mooresboro until 1804. At that time, they left the Sandy Run congregation to become charter members of the new Concord Baptist Church.

Billy became very active in building the new nation. In 1798 he served in the North Carolina House of Commons. He then was elected to serve fourteen terms in the North Carolina State Senate between 1800 and 1824.[7][8]

Drusy died 28 March 1828 in Rutherford County, NC at 73 years of age. She is buried beside William at the Green Cemetery near the Old Bostic Brickyard, Rutherford Co., NC.

Billy may have married second, Mary Unknown.[9]

Billy died 6 Nov1832 in Rutherford Co., NC, at 79 years of age. His body was interred in the family cemetery at the old Bostic Brickyard, Rutherford Co., NC. According to an old survey of the cemetery by C. Kenyon Withrow, William Green's tombstone gave his death date and then age at death as 81. This would make his birth date 1751 or 1752. The graveyard has been destroyed since the census.[10] [11]


  3. [United States Old War Pension Index, 1815-1926 (accessed 12 December 2014), William W Green, 1850; citing Pension, North Carolina, NARA microfilm publication T316, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.; FHL microfilm 821,605.
  4. The Greenes of Rhode Island.
  5. Dillard, Greene, Giddens, Hollingsworth, Love, Lott, Mathis,McCall, McMahan, Maloy, Moore, Roberts, Sweat & Others of Wiregrass Georgia & Beyond
  6. History of the Battle of King's Mountain by Lyman C. Draper, 1881, reprinted 1967, pp 353-354.
  7. Journey Through Time
  8. The Greene Family and All its Branches.
  9. Bridges Family
  10. Bulletin of Genealogical Society of Old Tryon County February 1978
  11. Find A Grave

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DNA Connections
It may be possible to confirm family relationships with Billy by comparing test results with other carriers of his Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA. However, there are no known yDNA or mtDNA test-takers in his direct paternal or maternal line. It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share DNA with Billy:

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Images: 2
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