Another breed of heroes: American Revolutionary War soldier honored with headstone in Shadowlawn Cemetery – Reuters

Some heroes are the focus of the history books, others are hidden behind well-known names.

Joseph Breed was just that – a character so obscure to the story that he wasn’t given his own resting place or marker. Instead, he shared it with his other comrades-in-arms who fought on behalf of establishing American independence during the Revolutionary War.

Joseph’s very existence might have been lost to time itself were it not for the recent efforts of several historic preservation organizations and many of his few remaining descendants.

On April 30, members of the Piedmont and LaGrange chapters of the Sons of the American Revolution came together to honor Joseph with a Patriot Memorial headstone dedication service led by the Sons of the American Revolution. The service was held at Shadowlawn Cemetery on land where some of Joseph’s descendants are buried.

Joseph himself is not believed to have ever set foot in Troup County, much less LaGrange. However, his oldest descendant and member of the Piedmontese chapter of the Georgia Society of the Sons of the American Revolution, Gerald Breed, was born in LaGrange and currently lives in Marietta. Two of his grandfathers are buried in Shadowlawn. Along with Gerald, at least 15 other purebred descendants were present for the service.

“I felt a bit of peace seeing the turnout,” Gerald said.

The ceremony included full honors for the Revolutionary War soldier: a presentation of the colors, a mourning musket tribute by the Elijah Clark Militia, a retirement of the colors by the Georgia Society of Color Guard, and a special proclamation from the mayor. of LaGrange Jim Thornton proclaiming April 30 as Patriot Joseph Breed Day.

Memorial wreaths were presented by the heads of 10 historical organizations in Troup County.

Gerald also received an American flag on the United States Capitol in honor of Breed.

As noted in the biography provided by Gerald, Joseph was born in Stonington, Connecticut on April 8, 1738.

His father was a Christian evangelist called to preach on the southern border of Appalachia. Gerald noted that the Breeds’ efforts resulted in the start of hundreds of small churches over a 30-year period.

Joseph’s extended family moved south in 1755, eventually settling in upstate South Carolina around 1762. He married Catherine Lee around 1760, and they had eight children.

The Breed family acquired land between the Broad River and the Saluda River on Fairforest Creek, which was in present-day Union County, South Carolina. The Fairforest community was about 35 miles south of Cowpens and about 40 miles from Kings Mountain.

The Fairforest community had divided loyalties during the American Revolution, and there were skirmishes between Whigs (Patriots) and Conservatives (Loyalists) in this area. Colonel Thomas Brandon of Fairforest raised a militia unit to fight for the Whigs. Joseph and his brother, Nathan Breed, enlisted in Colonel Brandon’s Fairforest Regiment.

Brandon’s regiment served in 37 Revolutionary War battles including Ramsours’ Mill, Williamson Plantation (Huck’s Defeat), Musgrove’s Mill, Kings Mountain, Blackstock’s Plantation, Cowpens and Eutaw Springs.

Joseph Breed and his family moved to Warren County, Georgia around 1787, where he acquired land to build a house and farm.

He died in 1807 and was buried in Warren County. A monument in Warrenton lists Joseph and approximately 156 other American Revolutionary War veterans who are buried in Warren County, although the exact location of Joseph’s grave is unknown.

A small maker was placed on the Breed family lot in Shadowlawn Cemetery with the inscription “Joseph Breed–Patriot–American Revolution.”

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