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View Tree for Major John PearsonMajor John Pearson (b. 15 July 1690, d. 1771)

John Pearson was born 15 July 1690 in Windsor on the Thames, Berkshire, England, and died 1771 in Granby, Windsor Forest, Richland District, South Carolina. He married Mary Raiford on 25 April 1742 in Orangeburg District, South Carolina, daughter of Philip Ephraim Raiford and Martha Goodwin.

 Includes NotesNotes for John Pearson:
John Pearson, an English Gentleman of high rank, was born at Windsor, on the Thames about 1690, and died at his estate, Windsor Forest, Fairfield District, South Carolina in about 1760. He was educated for the British Navy. He had two sisters, one married a Beard and one a Coffin. On the death of his father he disagreed with his maternal uncle, came to this country and landed somewhere on the Jersey Coast, intending to ship for the West Indies. Off the Coast of Florida the small boat in which he and a few companions were making the voyage, was captured by pirates. He managed to escape by leaping over the side of a vessel at night and swimming boldly to the shore; was at once seized by the Spaniards and thrown into the old fort at St. Augustine, where he lay for months in a dungeon. The prisoners were brought forth daily and long discussions held as to what horrible mode of death would be most suitable and most blood curdling. Sometime a few would be tortured, while the others were held in reserve for something more awful.
Finally, he escaped, lay for days in the adjacent marshes and at last made his way to New Orleans in a row boat. From there he went to Charleston, S.C. through the country, the journey taking two years. As he made his way slowly from tribe to tribe, through unspeakable dangers and hardships, he gained a knowledge of Indian languages and affairs that was very valuable in after years. Reaching Charleston he was introduced to Governor Robert Johnson, who recognizing his superior intelligence and education, made him his private secretary. He was put in charge of all Indian transactions, which were numerous.
He was a Captain in Colonial wars, and surveyed the road from Charleston to Nashville, and built Fort London, the first Anglo American settlement in Tennessee.
Captain John Pearson married Mary, the daughter of Philip Raiford. the Raifords were distinguished in both Carolinas. Isaac was one of the richest men who ever lived in the South. His daughter married the celebrated Moses Kirkland. John and Mary Pearson had five children: William, who died young, John, who was Brigadier General of Militia in the Revolution and raised two thousand pounds of cotton to the acre (Mill's Statistics); Philip, who was a justice of the peace of south Carolina at the same time George Washington was a surveyor of Virginia. There were two daughters, Martha, who married Captain John Cook, and Mary , who was the wife of Thomas Bond. All descendents of John Pearson are known.

The Pearson came from England and settled in North Carolina in the year 1708. John Pearson the first, who came to this country had three sons. John, Amos and Richmond. John 2nd. had two sons, Phillip Peter Pearson who came to South Carolina and settled on the Congaree river not far from Camden. John the third was a Brigadier General of Malitia during the Revolutionary War, and Phillip Pearson was before the war Clerks of Court of Camden County, embracing all the territory up to where Laurens County now is. His appointment to this responsible position was given him by George, third. This show him to have been a man of character and education. He was at the same time or thereabouts, a public Surveyor, and in this capacity laid out the City of Columbia, assisted by on Cato.
During the War of American Independence, Philip Peter Pearson was a Commissary of subsistence and had the trust imposed upon him to putting his signature to Continental script. In the discharge of his duty as Commissary, he once made the trip on foot from what is now Hosge's Ferry, and there communicated with a Rebel Office (most probably Morgan) who furnished at his request a convoy of transport for the use of the Army supplies he had collected. Once he fed on his own plantation for a week, all the men and horses of Colonel William Washington's command. In 1782 he was married to Mary Butler, daughter of Francis Butler and Ann Weston.

More About John Pearson and Mary Raiford:
Marriage: 25 April 1742, Orangeburg District, South Carolina.

Children of John Pearson and Mary Raiford are:
  1. +John H. Pearson, b. 30 May 1743, Richland District, South Carolina, d. 25 October 1817, South Carolina.
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