Annals of Fort Lee


Fort Lee was built in 1788 on the site of what is now Charleston, West Virginia, at the junction of the Kanawha River and the Elk River. It is named for Virginia Governor Henry (Light Horse Harry) Lee, and played a great part in the Indian wars of that area until they came to an end in 1794. The fort was established by a group of men led by the Clendenin brothers George and William, for whose father Charles the city of Charleston was later named.

The fort’s early history was fraught with difficulties getting lead, powder and pay (with the capital at Richmond being far away over the mountains), but it contributed to an organized system of defense to stop the Indian raids from driving the settlers from their homes.

The book discusses George Washington, who owned property nearby, and Daniel Boone, who was appointed Lieutenant Colonel of the Kanawha and took up residence quite near the fort. Readers will learn of “Mad Ann Bailey,” who carried powder unmolested by Indians because they thought her insane, and others whose determination aided frontier defense. Following Mad Anthony Wayne’s success against the Indians on the western border, Fort Lee ceased to have any connection with the Virginia military system by the end of 1795, and became simply a residence in Charleston. The fort building was subsequently moved a couple of times and was finally consumed by fire in 1891, except for a couple of logs from which souvenirs were made. A full-name index adds to the value of this work.


Roy Bird Cook


(1935, 1998), 2016, 5½x8½, paper, index, 132 pp.

ISBN: 9780788409561