Celebration to commemorate the Bryans, Davie’s first settlers

Published 12:53 pm Tuesday, October 24, 2023

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By Marcia Phillips

Historian, Davie

County Public Library

November marks the 275th anniversary of the arrival of the first settlers to Davie County – the Bryan family.

Morgan and Martha Bryan with their large extended family, including 9-year-old granddaughter Rebecca, who later married Daniel Boone, crossed Shallow Ford on the Yadkin River and claimed multiple acres of land near present day Farmington.

The patriarch at Bryan’s Settlement was 77 years old at the time.

In the settling of any frontier, someone has to be first. While explorers had wandered across the land, the Bryans emerging from the river crossing with their household goods prepared to build homes and plant fields marked the beginning of families calling this place home.

Some of their descendants are still here, while others participated in the immigration across the mountains into the west.

But they began our local story – a full 25 years before the War for Independence of the nation.

This is worth celebrating.

Everyone is invited to a free commemoration on Saturday, Nov. 4 at Shallow Ford Day Lily Farm in Huntsville. Great storytelling, live music, resources and the opportunity to walk to the land where they first stepped on shore begins at 10 a.m. Come step back in time, hear the stories and meet the Bryans, our first neighbors.

For more information, check Davie County Historical and Genealogical Society’s website or visit the history room at the library.