Notes for James Archer: Served in military 1776 to 1794. 18 year career in and around Fort Jackson (now Waynesburg, PA). Enlisted in 1776 as an ensign in Capt. Davis Owens company of Frontier Rangers. When Davis (David) Owens went to Kentucky, James Archer was elected Captain of Fort Jackson. In the fall of 1776, he received orders from a military superior headquartered at "Catfish" (now Washington, PA), to send an officer w/ten men to the flats of Grave Creek, where they would be joined by another squad w/supplies. Their destination was the mouth of Fish Creek "and there erect a block house, and keep scouts along the river to watch the movements of the Indians, that the settlers might be able to gather their fall crops and seeding without being attacked by hostile Indians." Capt. Archer selected himself and ten men, one of them being Thomas Smith.
In 1782, James was captain of the 1st Battalion, 5th Company, Washington Co., PA Militia, and he had three brothers serving under him: Joseph Archer, Michael Archer, and Simon Archer. On July 7, 1784, James was made captain of a company in the 2nd Battalion that was under the command of Col. Henry Enochs, and Maj. James Carmichael. In 1786, he was captain of the 3rd Company, 4th Battalion. Under him was Lt. James Seals, Ensign William Hathaway, and 78 Privates. The battalion was commanded by Lt. Col. William Crawford and Maj. Joseph Vanmetere.
From the 7th of May 1793 to December 1793, he served in Capt. Wililam Crawford's company as a private. His monthly pay was at the rate of $6.67 per month for a period of 220 days, for a total pay of $48.02 1/2. Starting April 1, 1794, he served under Capt. James Seals for frontier defense as a private for 253 days. On the March 24, 1795, James Archer, Sr., received $49.73 for services in the Washington Co., PA Militia and $2 for the use of his gun.
He was Catholic, and he and his sons Nathan, Michael, and Simon are generally credited with founding the first Catholic church in the area. Some claim that it was the first Catholic church west of the Ohio. Capt. Archer was determined to make the frontier of Green County, PA safer from Indian tribes. This determination may have brought about the deaths of his father-in-lay, Robert McClelland, and some of the McClelland family, and part of his own family, in a massacre by Indians at Double Creek (now Waynesburg, PA). Two of his daughters were killed by Indians.
Children of James Archer and Sophia McClelland are: