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Abraham and Elizabeth (Mills) Ayers

Note: They name is sometimes spelled Ayers and sometimes Ayres, so you will see them interchanged.

Abraham Ayers was born about 1740 in Botetourt, Augusta County, Virginia and died between July 6, 1783 (when he signed his will) and March 4, 1784 (when his will was probated) in Richmond (now Columbia) County, Georgia – probably from complications of being shot during the Revolutionary War (see below). Applications for land grants as a result of his service says he died in December 1780. This can not be correct as his will was signed in 1783. It is more likely that he left service in December 1780 due to the wounds.

In about 1764 Abraham married the first time when he married Elizabeth Mills, daughter of Alexander and Alice (Gent or Gentry) Mills. Elizabeth was born about 1753 in Virginia and died about 1780 in Georgia.

In about 1781 Abraham married a second time when he married Elizabeth Kirkham. Elizabeth moved to Georgia in the 1770’s along with her brothers Joseph and Henry, and sister Margaret. They had no children. Tradition says they were married at the close of the Revolutionary War when Abraham was a widower with three children.

At the first Seige of Augusta in 1780, Colonel Wm. Candler raised a volunteer regiment from Richmond Co., Georgia. The regiment was mustered on Sept. 15, 1870 and Abraham Ayres was named Captain of the 2nd Company. The regiment was called the ‘Regiment of Refugees’ of Richmond County, Georgia. This regiment was so named because the families of the soldiers were sent to a safe refuge and was the only Georgia Regiment distinguished as “Refugees” The field officers are listed as follows: : Col. William Chandler, Lieut. Col. David Robeson; Majory John Shields (killed in battle); Adj John McCarthy; and Rev. Loveless Savage, Chaplain. Some of the Line Officers were: Capt. Robert Spurlock; Capt. Ezekiel Offut; Captain Abraham Ayers; Capt. John Schakelford; Frederick Stallings; Capt. James Stallings; Lieut. Edmund Martin; Lieut. James Martin

The regiment went into South Carolina fighting at King's Mountain, Fish Dam Ford, and Long Cane. The Battle at Long Cane, South Carolina resulted in a defeat at the hands of the British, with many Patriots killed or wounded and Abraham was said to have "fell" at this battle, according to the Certificate of Service. Since the battle occurred on Dec. 11, 1780, and his will was signed July 6, 1783, it was likely that he was at home nursing the battle wound which contributed to his death.

It is documented that during the War, Abraham was accompanying Shadrach Mims to his home when they surprised Tory looters ransacking Shadrach’s home. Shot were aimed at Shadrach, but it was Abraham Ayers whom was hit. This story is verified in DAR Patriot Index Centennial Edition.

In order for a soldier from this unit to obtain “the bounty due him under the law the refugee soldier was required to attach to his application, and file with the Governor, the certificate of the commanding officer under whom he served” according to Colonel William Candler, OF GEORGIA. His Ancestry and Progeny. It was William Chandler whom wrote for Abraham as follows:

"I do certify that Captain Abraham Ayers was one of those worthy refugees who Aid from British tyranny and faithfully did his duty as a captain in my regiment of refugees until he bravely fell, fighting for his country, at the battle fought at Long Cane, in December, 1780.”

Certificates Of Service In The American Revolution states:
On File in the Office of Secretary of State, in the State Capitol. AYRES, ABM. (deceased) "who fell in refugeeship." Certificate of Col. William Candler, 20th February, 1784. Heirs pray for 500 acres in Washington Co. Granted 16 April, 1784. Fell in battle of Longcain in December, 1780.
For his service in the Revolutionary War, Abraham Ayres received, posthumously, grants of land in Franklin, Washington, and Wilkes counties of Georgia. Revolutionary War Bounty Land Grants lists Abraham twice land in #1 GA 17 May 1784 – to Heirs.#2 GA, Refugee 20 Feb 1784 500 acres. Official Register of Land Lottery Of Georgia 1827 states he received land in Captain Avans District Number 77 District 13 Carroll County

Miscellaneous Notes:
1. In a Will of Eliakim Martin, a portion of Abraham’s land is described as “also a salt meadow at the Red Root, which I bought of Abraham Ayers”

2. Georgia Revolutionary War Soldiers, Sailors, Patriots and Descendants Abraham Ayers,Rev.Sol.-GA.Will probated 3-4-1784/Richmond Co.,GA. Will names wife, Elizabeth, and children: Thomas, Rebecca,and Gene(a daughter).

Roster of Revoloutionary Soldiers in Georgia Vol. I
Revolutionary War Bounty Land Grants
Historical collections of the Georgia chapters, Daughters of the American Revolution
Georgia s Roster of the Revolution
"Georgia Revolutionary War Soldiers,Sailors,Patriots,and Descendants" by Carter (Vol.II,pg.15)

Abraham Ayers Will
Abraham Ayers Plat