Ann Simpson Davis Chapter, Columbus, Ohio
Daughters of the American Revolution
Ann Simpson was a cousin of General Grant's mother. Ann was born in Buckingham Township, December 29, 1764, to William and Nancy Hines Simpson. During 1780, at the age of 16, she was handpicked by General Washington to carry messages from Washington to his generals while they were in eastern Pennsylvania.
John Davis, who later became Ann Simpson's husband, was born September 6, 1760, in Bucks County. At the age of 16, he enlisted taking the place of his father in William Hart's company of the Bucks County Battalion of the Flying Camp, helping to fill a quota of 400 men set by the Continental Congress on June 4, 1776. He was with General Washington at the historic crossing of the Delaware on Christmas Eve, 1776. He spent the winter at Valley Forge and again fought the British at Monmouth eight months later. In 1777, Davis enlisted in the Third Pennsylvania serving under Thomas Butler, and participating in the storming of Stony Point. He later served under the command of the Marquis de Lafayette, where he helped carry him from the battlefield during the battle of Brandywine. He participated in the battle of Yorktown and witnessed the surrender of Lord Cornwallis.
Pretty red-haired Ann was an accomplished horsewoman and was a familiar sight to her Tory neighbors, making her the perfect candidate to slip unnoticed through the British ranks. She often carried the secret orders to her rendezvous at the various mills in and around Philadelphia and Bucks County, smuggling messages in the sacks of grain and vegetables, sometimes in bullets and in her clothing. The mills, a center for gossip and news, gave her added cover. Dressing up as an old woman pulled her through many tight spots in Philadelphia. She was never caught, but occasionally had to swallow the messages when she was searched.
Ann's service ended when General Washington left her area. She had displayed uncommon bravery and received a letter of commendation from General Washington thanking her for her services. This letter, however, was loaned to relatives and never returned.
John and Ann were childhood friends. Two years after he returned to Bucks County, they were married in June 1783 at her parents' home. They remained in Bucks County for 12 years during which time five of the nine children were born; Sarah- 1784, William- 1786, John- 1788, Nancy- 1790, and Samuel- 1792. Moving to Brookville, MD, in 1794, Joshua was born in 1796, Samuel Simpson in 1798, Joseph in 1802, and Elizabeth (Eliza) in 1805.
In 1816, John and Ann moved to Dublin, Ohio, to claim land they had received for the Revolutionary War services. They remained with James Eaton for 18 months until they finally settled in Perry Township, Franklin County, Ohio.
John and Ann were a loving couple and often dreamed of building a grand brick house where all of the family could be together. Unfortunately, that dream was not realized until five years before John's death on January 25, 1832.
Ann Simpson died June 6, 1851, 19 years after John's death. The brick house was finished in 1842 and stood on Riverside Drive (on the east bank of the Scioto River, one-mile south of Dublin, just south of Martin Road), until 1877, when it was demolished by Planned Communities, Inc.
Today, Ann and John lay side by side on a hill underneath a double marker in the Davis Historical Cemetery on Riverside Drive on Route 33, just south of Dublin, Ohio.
The Ann Simpson Davis Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution was organized on February 1, 1926, in Columbus, Ohio. The chapter was named after Ann Simpson Davis to do honor to a brave woman who as a young girl assisted her country to gain its independence. Under the leadership of Mrs. C. B. Galbraith to organize the chapter, the chapter's first meeting was held at the YWCA with 20 women present.
Meetings are held the second Saturday of each month.
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