In June of 1780, British troops commanded by Colonel Henry Byrd, along with American Indian allies, attacked the frontier forts in what is now Central Kentucky.
Both Ruddle’s Fort and Martin’s Station fell; those surviving the attacks were taken prisoner and marched on foot to Detroit. Christiana and four of her children—James, Cornelius, Reese and either Speed or an infant whose name is unknown—were among those taken prisoner on June 24, 1780, at Martin’s Station. During the brutal journey north, either Speed or the unknown infant perished.
Records show that Christiana and the three surviving children arrived at Detroit on August 4, 1780, were transferred to Fort Niagara and, on October 4, 1782, arrived at Montreal.
Released from captivity in July or August of 1783, Christiana and her children traveled to “below Staunton,” Virginia, reuniting with her husband there in autumn 1783.
After the American Revolution, Christiana and Charles settled on their large land holdings in Knox (now Whitley) County, Kentucky, where, in 1807, she died of dropsy.
In his writings, Colonel Byrd stated that the women and children were forced to march as much as 20 miles per day. Stories from survivors indicate that the female captives were physically and sexually abused. Christiana survived a 2,000+ mile round trip and kept three small children alive during the process. A woman of strength and endurance, she remains a role model to her descendants. We honor and remember her.
This tree is donated in her memory by her 4th great-granddaughter Sharon Mayne Withers.