John King (1758-1842)



Contributor:  Betty Collier King



From "The Greenville Mountaineer" April 8, 1842


Mr. John King departed this life on March 25, 1842 at his residence near Rich Hill in Spartanburg District, having lived 84 years.  The subject of this notice was born in Louisa County, Virginia, on January 12, 1758.  He entered the list of his country's defenders in his 18th year, and attached himself to the Virginia Regiment.  His fidelity, his patriotic devotion, and inflexible courage procured his removal from the Virginia Regiment to the highly responsible and honorable station of Life Guard to the great George Washington, in which capacity he served his country amidst all the varied scenes of that eventful period.  He was the first to hail the approach of the immortal Frederick Steuben to the tent of Washington, and under the instruction of that great friend to freedom, received much of that skill which gave to his leaders so much confidence in him.  In the memorable battles fought at Brandywine, Germantown, and Monmouth, he shared largely in the perils to which the friends of the Republic were exposed.  He was sent with Lafayette through Virginia, and though his person was the special object of pursuit by the British, one of whose officers was heard to say, "the boy should not escape him", he nevertheless made good his escape, and the next intelligence the enemy had of John King, he was with Washington, dealing out destruction to the enemies of his country.  He was oftern heard to regret that when Cornwallis delivered up his sword at Yorktown, he was prevented from participating in the joy of the occasion by severe illness which had well nigh cost him his life.  Inasmuch as he had witnessed the reverses of his General, he always spoke of it as a great bereavement that he was prevented from witnessing his General's success at that moment.


Mr. King emigrated from Virginia to Spartanburg District where he has enjoyed the peace and quiet of domestic life for the last half century.  He married Sarah Lemaster of Spartanburg District who still lives to regret for a season the absence of him with whom she has so long and so happily lived.  He has left a large and very respectable family, all of whom sedulously imitate the virtures of their progenitor.  Always unpretending in his disposition, Mr. King never asked for an office, but rather chose to gain his living as he had gained his liberties; by the sweat of his brow.  Agriculture was his favorite pursuit, by which he earned a very comfortable competency.  His whole life was characterized by an untiring fondness for perusing the Holy Scriptures, to which we can attribute his happy and peaceful departure from this world.  Mr. King is perhaps the last one of the chosen band who shared so largely in the confidence of the great George Washington.  A very large circle of friends attended the corpse of the venerable patriot to his final resting place.



John King (6), b. 12 Jan 1758 at Louisa Co, VA, d. 25 Mar 1842 at SC, bur. 25 Mar 1842 at Spartanburg District, SC

+Sarah LeMaster (91), b. 17 Sep 1774 at Amherst Co, VA, m. 02 Mar 1790 at Spartanburg District, SC, d. 01 Oct 1850 at Spartanburg Co., SC

├── Edmund King (92), b. 01 Dec 1790 at Spartansburg District, SC

   +Nancy Emberson (93), m. 30 Jan 1830 at TN

├── William King (94), b. 19 Mar 1792

   +Rhoda Smith (95), m. 1825

├── Mary King (96), b. 08 Mar 1794

├── Ann King (97), b. 07 Nov 1796

├── Lucy King (98), b. 15 Nov 1798

   +James W. Cooper (99), m. 15 Dec 1816

├── Elizabeth King (100), b. 06 Sep 1800

   +John Easly (101), m. 30 Jan 1823

├── Martha King (102), b. 20 Oct 1801

   +John Gosset (113), m. 15 Dec 1830

├── Philip W. King (104), b. 22 Oct 1803

   +Dolly Browning (105), m. 01 Aug 1829 at TN

├── Sarah King (106), b. 22 Jan 1806

   +HIram White (107), m. 11 Nov 1828 at SC

├── son King (108), b. 06 Dec 1808, d. 1808

├── Margaret King (109), b. 02 Nov 1809

   +David Reid (110), m. 11 Oct 1827

├── John Madison King (111), b. 28 Mar 1812

   +Sarah Hammett (188), m. 01 Nov 1842 at SC

└── Minerva King (112), b. 25 May 1815, d. 05 Feb 1817


George Washington's Life Guard

John King Revolutionary War Records at the National Archives