Griffith Rutherford

Griffith Rutherford

Revolutionary War Officer
Born 1721

Griffith Rutherford was an officer in the American Revolutionary War, a political leader in North Carolina, and an important figure in the early history of the Southwest Territory and the state of Tennessee. During the French and Indian War, Rutherford became a captain of a local British colonial militia. He continued serving in the militia until the start of the revolution in 1775, at which time he enlisted in the North Carolina militia as a colonel.… Read More

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Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of Griffith Rutherford.


1721 Birth Born in 1721.


1753 32 Years Old 1 More Event
Originally from Ireland, Rutherford immigrated with his parents to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Colony, at the age of eighteen. In 1753 he moved to Rowan County, in the Province of North Carolina, where he married Elizabeth Graham. An active member of his community, Rutherford served in multiple civil occupations. He was a representative of both houses of the North Carolina House of Commons, as well as an unsuccessful candidate for governor. Rutherford was an advocate of the anti-federalist movement, and was appointed President of the Legislative Council of the Southwest Territory in 1794.
1760 39 Years Old Rutherford began his long career as a soldier in 1760 during the French and Indian War. … Read More


1769 48 Years Old Between 1769 and 1771, he embraced the colonist's cause during the Regulator Movement, eventually commanding a local militia which participated in the Battle of Alamance (May 16, 1771). … Read More


1775 54 Years Old Rutherford entered the war in 1775 as a colonel in the North Carolina militia following his appointment to the Rowan County Committee of Safety. … Read More
1778 57 Years Old British strategists viewed the Southern colonies, especially lightly populated Georgia, as the most vulnerable of all. Despite early victories won by the Patriots at Charleston and other settlements, the South became the focus of English attack starting in 1778. … Read More
1779 58 Years Old Rutherford had been elected to North Carolina's senate in 1779 and continued to serve in this position until 1789. … Read More
1780 59 Years Old The loss of Charleston in 1780 was a huge blow to the Patriot cause and posed a significant threat to neighboring North Carolina, which lacked adequate defenses due to expiring enlistments. … Read More


…  After being exchanged in 1781, Rutherford participated in several other campaigns, including further attacks on the Chickamauga faction of the Cherokee.
1782 61 Years Old In 1782, following his success at Wilmington, Rutherford again fought the Chickamauga in the west. … Read More
1788 67 Years Old At the Constitutional Convention held at Hillsborough, North Carolina in 1788, he had reservations about the Constitution - as did other anti-federalists at the meeting. … Read More
1805 84 Years Old 1 More Event
Rutherford retired to Sumner County, Tennessee, where he died on August 10, 1805, at the age of 84.
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