I was born in
Perry County, in Campbell's Bend, August 12, 1822. My
father was Francis Campbell. He was born on Walker's Creek in
Carolina, a tributary of New River. They could roll a hogshead of
to Charleston, North Carolina, in a day. He was born May 15, 1800;
January 8, 1893. He was well preserved. My grandfather was
He was born in North Carolina also. His wife was a Couch. The
and Couches came from the same part of the state.
In 1806 a large number of families in that region thought of
to Kentucky. Not willing to take their families into an unknown
they selected the two men, viz. - Austin Couch and Charles Francis, two
choice men unmarried. They filled their knapsacks, took their
rifles and full of determination to accomplish the mission on which they
were sent, they started on foot to explore the new Eldorado. They
through Pound Gap and striking the headwaters of the Kentucky River they
followed the North Fork to Boonesborough, thence to Lexington and
the same route, reaching home the same season. They reported a
plenty. They said there was everything to eat but nothing to wear.
a land flowing with "milk and honey." The streams abounded in
woods were full of deer, bear, turkey, buffalo and elk. Filled
flaming report, my grandfather and his family, his brother William and
family, started the following spring. They were large families.
started for Lexington but stopped at Campbell's Bend on the North Fork
the Kentucky River, in what is now Perry County. They found four acres
land cleared at that point and concluded to make a crop and remain over
year. My grandfather brought nine horses, his brother ten.
their cattle also. Some were sick on the way, and this was one of
reasons for stopping.
When spring came again his family or some of them were still sick,
was two years before they got rid of the chills. When they had
they felt so well and were so charmed with the rich soil and luxuriant
cane-brakes, and the abundance of game, that they lost the desire to go
In North Carolina, they had put manure in the furrow to raise corn,
then the frost would cut it rare; ripe, a diminutive corn was all they
could raise. The great ears of corn that grew on their rich
sufficient to meet the expectation awakened by the glowing descriptions
Messers. Couch and Francis. They put all they had into clothes.
My great grandmother's father was James. He was born in
were two brothers, James and William James. I suppose Jesse James
the same family. She was the daughter of William James; they were
The Campbells are Scotch-Irish. Later Couch and Francis, the
came to this region. Austin Couch married a sister of Judge James
Eversole, of Clay County. These explorers found a path hacked from
Fork to Grapevine.
Peter DeWeese settled at the mouth of Grapevine and died from
When they would find a bee tree they would cut down a small chestnut,
it, and fill it full of honey and carry it home. The horses and
lived on the range. The cane was an evergreen and in winter and
made good pasture. In the sumer the peavine was equal to
was introduced. Buckskin supplied the men. The fifty families of
proposed to make a settlement about Lexington. They came on later
settled at different places. The Begleys, Sizemore, Rameys, and my
Margaret Williams, came from that section. The Nobles, Neaces, and
came later. My grandfather was a religious man. He was a
he came here. His children were James, John, Mary, Sallie,
Francis, my father; Elijah, Isaac, Stephen, Hiram, Samuel, and Bitsy
(Betsy), 12 in all. William, his brother, settled at the mouth of
Campbell's Creek. His children were: Charles, William,
Henry, Daniel, Margaret, and Amy.