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William Chewning

William Chewning

Rank: Civilian

Descendent: Vickie B


William V Chewning was born about 1790 in either Caroline or Spotsylvania County, Virginia to John and Rachel Voss Chewning. By 1798, the family was living in a residence named “Locust Grove”, located near Mt Pleasant Post Office. William married Permelia Henderson, bon 17 Feb 1793 to William and Frances Collins Henderson. William and Permilia eventually had 11 children, including John Thomas.

By 1820, William was working for William Jones as an overseer of the Jones property. At that time, the Jones property consisted of about 5,000 acres at the center of the Wilderness, a region of small farm plots and dense undergrowth. The Chewning family resided on a small plot at the southern edge of the farm, possibly near Wilderness Run. Parker Store road ran through the land. In 1825, Chewning discovered that Jones did not own a small 150-acre lot adjacent to the plot where his family lived. Edmund Lee of Alexandria owned the property. William Chewning offered Lee $300 for the plot. Chewning and his wife both had an inheritance, allowing them the means to buy their own property. They immediately began to build a home named Mt View”, because it gave such a great view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. When Jones found out what happened, he fired Chewning, but eventually, they mended fences. Jones discovered that some small buildings on what he thought was his property was actually on Chewnings new property. Land boundaries could sometimes be uncertain.

During the Civil War, Mt View was devastated by both the Union and the Confederate Armies as they raided animal stock, and destroyed buildings and fences for firewood.

William V Chewning died tragically on 11 June 1863 at the Herndon Mill on Wilderness Run on the Jones property. Arriving to work and finding no one on site to help, he opened the water flow himself. The water force knocked him down, injuring his leg, and he did not recover.

The family inherited the property.

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