Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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LEWIS, Andrew, soldier, born in Donegal, Ireland, about 1720; died in Bedford county, Virginia, 26 September, 1781. His father, John Lewis, of Huguenot descent, killed his landlord in resisting an illegal attempt to eject him from his possessions, and came to this country in 1732, settling in Beliefonte, Augusta County, Virginia, of which he was the first white resident. Andrew, with his brothers, early became conspicuous in the frontier struggles, and volunteered in the expedition to take possession of the Ohio region in 1754. He was a major in Washington's Virginia regiment, and highly esteemed by the latter for his courage and skill. He was with Washington at the surrender of Fort Necessity, and, according to some authorities, at Braddock's defeat in 1755. He commanded the Sandy creek expedition in 1756, and was made prisoner in that of Major James Grant to Fort Duquesne in 1758, and taken to Montreal. In 1768 he was a commissioner from Virginia to conclude a treaty with the Six Nations at Fort Stanwix, New York In 1774, when hostilities had begun again on the western frontier of Virginia, he received the appointment of brigadier-general, and as commander-in-chief at the battle of Point Pleasant, at the mouth of Great Kanawha river, gained a victory over the Shawnee confederacy under the celebrated "Cornstalk" in what was probably the most severe engagement with the Indians that had taken place in this country up to that period. He was a member of the house of burgesses for several years, and a delegate to the Virginia conventions of May and June, 1775. When Washington was appointed commander-in-chief of the Continental army, he recommended Lewis for major-general, but the latter was overlooked, and accepted the rank of brigadier-general on 1 March, 1776, which he resigned on 15 April, 1777. In 1776 the committee of safety sent him to dislodge Lord Dunmore, whom he attacked on 9 July, driving him from Gwynn's island. He resigned his command on account of illness, and died on the way to his home on Roanoke river. He possessed a strong physique and commanding presence, and was extravagantly described as making the earth "tremble as he walked." His statue occupies one of the pedestals around the Washington monument in Richmond, Virginia--His brother, Thomas, legislator, born in Donegal, Ireland, in 1718; died in 1790, was a member of the Virginia house of burgesses, where he faithfully supported the rights of the colonies. He advocated the resolutions of Patrick Henry in the session of 1765, was a member of the conventions of 1775 and 1776, and also of the State convention that ratified the Federal constitution.--Another brother, William, soldier, born in Ireland in 1724; died in Virginia in 1811, was engaged in the French and Indian warfare under his brother Andrew, and served during the Revolution with the rank of colonel.--Another brother, Charles, born in Virginia; killed at the battle of Point Pleasant, 10 October, 1774, also served under his brother Andrew, was a leader in the conflicts on the western frontier of the state, and became a colonel in the army.--Charles's nephew, Joshua, jurist, born in Virginia in 1774; died in New Orleans, Louisiana, 5 June, 1833, emigrated to Kentucky in early manhood, and settled in Lexington, where he was the political adviser of Henry Clay. He was appointed by President Jefferson in 1803 one of the three commissioners to take possession of the newly purchased province of Louisiana, and was subsequently judge of the state supreme court.--Joshua's son, John Lawson, soldier, born in Lexington, Kentucky, 26 March, 1800; died in New Orleans, Louisiana, 15 May, 1886, removed to New Orleans in boyhood, and was educated in that city and at Litchfield, Connecticut He served as courier to General Andrew Jackson at the battle of New Orleans, was admitted to the bar in 1821, became inspector-general and major-general of the first division of Louisiana state troops in 1842, was sheriff in 1850, and mayor in 1855. During the civil war he was major-general of state militia in the Confederate service, was severely wounded at Mansfield, and served throughout the campaign that ended in the retirement of General Nathaniel P. Banks from the Red river. After the war he held several public posts in New Orleans, including that of jury-commissioner.
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