1758 to 1763 David Gowen of Fairfield Co, SC and TN

David Gowen of Fairfield Co, SC and TN b. abt 1758-1763. – d. abt 1780.

Parents:

Unk

Children:

Unk

Siblings:

Unk

FACTS:

David Going – enlisted in the 6th Regiment on 22 Oct 1776. N.A.853. then 1778 rollcall. SC.  under Cols Sumter and Henderson.
http://www.carolana.com/SC/Revolution/revolution_sc_sixth_regiment.html

The 6th Regiment participated in the following battles during the Revolution:

Date(s): Known Battles / Skirmishes:
 Jun. 28, 1776 Fort Moultrie
 Aug. 1, 1776 Seneca Town
Aug. 8-11, 1776 Cherokee Towns
Aug. 12, 1776 Tamassee
Sep. 1776 St. Augustine (FL)
Sep. 19, 1776 Coweecho River, NC
 May – July 1778 Florida Expedition
Dec. 29, 1778 Savannah (GA)
Mar. 3, 1779 Briar Creek (GA)
May 3, 1779 Coosawhatchie
Jun. 20, 1779 Stono Ferry
Sep. 16 – Oct. 18, 1779 Siege of Savannah (GA)

David Gowen – served in the militia under Col Roebuck before the fall of Charleston and was dead prior to Aug of 1786. A.A.3012B; A.A.3012A; X3520.   http://www.carolana.com/SC/Revolution/patriot_militia_sc_roebucks_batallion.html
(John Buck Gowen’s unit).  Roebuck’s Battalion participated in the following battles during the Revolution:

Brief History of Regiment:
Date(s): Known Battles / Skirmishes:
Aug. 18, 1780 Musgrove’s Mill
Aug. 18, 1780 Fishing Creek
Oct. 7, 1780 Kings Mountain
Nov. 1780 Enoree River
Nov. 20, 1780 Blackstocks
Dec. 30, 1780 Williams’s Plantation
Jan. 17, 1781 Cowpens
Feb. 1781 Watkins
Feb. 24, 1781 Fort Watson
Mar. 2, 1781 Mud Lick Creek
Mar. 2, 1781 Fair Forest Creek
Mar. 6, 1781 Lynches Creek
Apr. – Jun. 1781 Siege of Augusta (GA)
May 1, 1781 Bush River
May 21 – Jun. 19, 1781 Siege of Ninety-Six
May 22, 1781 Saluda River
Aug. 1, 1781 Cunningham’s Raid
Sep. 8, 1781 Eutaw Springs
Nov. 6, 1781 Gowen’s Fort
Nov. 8, 1781 Duncan’s Creek
Dec. 20, 1781 Edisto River
Apr. 1, 1782 Farrow’s Station

http://www.archivesindex.sc.gov/ArchivesImages/S108092/S108092005800306000/images/S108092005800306000.pdf

1780 – Fierce Indian fighting raged around the new settlements on the Cumberland, and David Gowen, regarded as an associate of William Gowen, was killed in 1780 in an attack on Mansker’s Station. There are two possible locations for Mansker’s Station. Mansker’s Station is now a historical spot near Goodletsville, Tennessee. Patrick Quigley was killed along with David Gowen.   See:  https://books.google.com/books?id=OuKVAgAAQBAJ&pg=PA179&lpg=PA179&dq=%22David+Goin%22,+mansker%27s&source=bl&ots=RqXp_QgqBp&sig=ACfU3U2RlvWpnxY-sCDoFmlFqzT6OcFD7A&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwj1sPD9nbXgAhVs4oMKHa5XDBsQ6AEwAXoECAQQAQ#v=onepage&q=%22David%20Goin%22%2C%20mansker’s&f=false ; See also:  https://books.google.com/books?id=9DjMSsxUR_UC&pg=PA127&lpg=PA127&dq=%22David+Goin%22,+mansker%27s&source=bl&ots=2oGFgEM_WL&sig=ACfU3U0UbCDC4w2PaaEtF9wthh9dXZZnMQ&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwj1sPD9nbXgAhVs4oMKHa5XDBsQ6AEwAHoECAkQAQ#v=onepage&q=%22David%20Goin%22%2C%20mansker’s&f=false ;  and see:  https://books.google.com/books?id=eiVEAQAAMAAJ&pg=PA89&lpg=PA89&dq=%22David+Goin%22,+mansker%27s&source=bl&ots=SaEThY8gIA&sig=ACfU3U3h-UO7gaCwZ6PICHmtwYiau66-Nw&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwj1sPD9nbXgAhVs4oMKHa5XDBsQ6AEwAnoECAcQAQ#v=onepage&q=%22David%20Goin%22%2C%20mansker’s&f=false ; and see:  https://books.google.com/books?id=jMU0U3KqzQQC&pg=PA151&lpg=PA151&dq=%22David+Goin%22,+mansker%27s&source=bl&ots=eD4rpmWF6L&sig=ACfU3U0n_3yFmr5ap-Y-1GaRDnOfEV4-yQ&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwj1sPD9nbXgAhVs4oMKHa5XDBsQ6AEwA3oECAMQAQ#v=onepage&q=%22David%20Goin%22%2C%20mansker’s&f=false ; and see:  http://nashvillehistory.blogspot.com/2013/07/claytons-history-of-davidson-county_6477.html

1781 Inventory of the estate of David Gowine, Will Book 1, pg 11. Davidson Co, TN
https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:2:77TV-1MY?i=26&cc=1909088&cat=307760

1783 March 4 “William Goings entered into bond in Davidson County with James Shaw, security, in the amount of £200 specie” and was granted the administration of “the estate of David Goings, deceased” by the Nashville Committee. William Gowen signed the return of the estate of David Gowen presented to the court. Shortly afterwards “William Gowens” as administrator of the estate of “David Gowens, deceased” sued John Gibson in a “plea of detinue*.”
Worth S. Ray, writing in “Tennessee Cousins” stated, “The court of the Cumberland District met again of June 3, 1783, and the Estate of David Gowen came up against John Gibson.” The estate was awarded £2 “for a heifer he disposed of,” according to early Nashville court records.
David Goin, Patrick Quigley, Betsy Kennedy, John Shockley, James Lumsley and William Neely” were killed at Mansker’s Station, according to “Early Times in Middle Tennessee” published in 1857 by John Carr. Davidson Co, TN   1783 March 4: William Goings was granted administration of David Goins estate (David Goins killed by Indians at Mansker’s Station) by the Committee of the Cumberland Association. [ref. 44b].  Davidson County, North Carolina
https://www.ancestry.com/interactive/3006/censuscumberland-001201_44?pid=953&backurl=http://search.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/sse.dll?_phsrc%3DPXv360%26_phstart%3DsuccessSource%26usePUBJs%3Dtrue%26gss%3Dangs-c%26new%3D1%26rank%3D1%26msT%3D1%26gsln%3DGoin%26gsln_x%3D0%26msypn__ftp%3DNorth%2520Carolina,%2520USA%26msypn%3D36%26msypn_PInfo%3D5-%257C0%257C1652393%257C0%257C2%257C0%257C36%257C0%257C0%257C0%257C0%257C0%257C%26msypn_x%3D1%26msypn__ftp_x%3D1%26cpxt%3D1%26cp%3D12%26catbucket%3Drstp%26MSAV%3D1%26MSV%3D0%26uidh%3Dm37%26pcat%3DCEN_1790%26h%3D953%26recoff%3D8%252020%26dbid%3D3006%26indiv%3D1%26ml_rpos%3D1&treeid=&personid=&hintid=&usePUB=true&_phsrc=PXv360&_phstart=successSource&usePUBJs=true#?imageId=censuscumberland-001201_44

1783 July 1: William Gowen plaintiff in lawsuit against John Gibson concerning cattle belonging to the estate of David Gower, deceased, before the Committee of the Cumberland Association [ref. 49b]. Davidson County, North Carolina
https://www.ancestry.com/interactive/3006/censuscumberland-001201_44?pid=953&backurl=http://search.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/sse.dll?_phsrc%3DPXv360%26_phstart%3DsuccessSource%26usePUBJs%3Dtrue%26gss%3Dangs-c%26new%3D1%26rank%3D1%26msT%3D1%26gsln%3DGoin%26gsln_x%3D0%26msypn__ftp%3DNorth%2520Carolina,%2520USA%26msypn%3D36%26msypn_PInfo%3D5-%257C0%257C1652393%257C0%257C2%257C0%257C36%257C0%257C0%257C0%257C0%257C0%257C%26msypn_x%3D1%26msypn__ftp_x%3D1%26cpxt%3D1%26cp%3D12%26catbucket%3Drstp%26MSAV%3D1%26MSV%3D0%26uidh%3Dm37%26pcat%3DCEN_1790%26h%3D953%26recoff%3D8%252020%26dbid%3D3006%26indiv%3D1%26ml_rpos%3D1&treeid=&personid=&hintid=&usePUB=true&_phsrc=PXv360&_phstart=successSource&usePUBJs=true#?imageId=censuscumberland-001201_44

1784 Jan 15 – John Gowan receives 640 acr on the E side of Mill Creek. Other names: Levi Gowan, David Gowan.  1793 June 26. Davidson Co., TN.

David Going land grant in 1784 to John pic p1

David Going land grant in 1784 to John pic p1

http://www.nclandgrants.com/grant/?mars=12.14.2.1816&qid=82716&rn=3

1786 Aug 14 – The indents, issued by the Treasury August 14, 1786, were approved long after the death of David Gowen of Fairfield County, son of Daniel Gowen and Rebecca Gowen.  David Gowen was killed by Indians in the winter of 1779-80 at Manskers Station in Davidson County, Tennessee.  William Gowen, regarded as his grandfather, was the executor of his estate at Nashville.  Levi Gowen, “who passes for mulatto,” brother of David Gowen, applied successful for the administration of the estate in Fairfield County and gave “John Gowen, gentleman of Daverson County” his power of attorney.  John Gowen, son of William Gowen, was a kinsman of Levi Gowen and David Gowen. Fairfield Co, SC.
http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~gowenrf/Gowenms007.htm

1788 Jan: The Davidson County Court Minute Book records that “William Gowens” sued the heirs of “David Gowens” in the January, 1788 session of court. The defendants, unnamed, did not appear in court, and the court awarded to the plaintiff “£7:14:3 in damages.” A writ of attachment [legal means of seizure] was granted by the court to William Gowen October 9, 1788, and the sheriff was ordered to sell the land. Davidson Co, TN

1788 Oct 9 – William Gowen v. The heirs of David Gowen decd – William Gowenpleads the estate of David Gowen is justly indebted to him L 27.14.3. Oath that the heirs of the sd Gowen are not resident in this county or otherwise are unknown to him. William Gowen asks the sheriff to attach the estate of David Gowen to pay his debts. Jury finds for Plt. Davidson Co, TN – Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions court records, 1783-1789 p. 110. https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CSKX-M3LD-Q?i=62&cat=134460

1788 Nov 17 David Gowen recd 1000 acres assigned to Col. Reading Blunt, on Wind Lick Creek, the south side of Cumberland, beginning below a fork called Plumb Fork, which runs in on the west side thence up both forks for compliment. No. 2609, No 3927. Cumberland TN.

1788 Dec 17: Colo. Reading Blunt – Assee. of David Gowers Sargt on Round Lick Creek the south side of the Cumberland beginning below a fork called Plume Fork which runs in on the west side thence up both forks for compt. Payton. W 2609- L 3927- A 1009.
Records of Davidson County. Land Records 1788-1793. p. 6.
https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:2:77TV-TGSD?i=71&cat=266136

1792 – Affidavit / appointment of John Goyen as power of atty to sell land in Davorson County, NC – as David Goyen (brother of Levi), had gone to the Cumberland River and was killed by Indians some 14 years earlier – 640 acres of land). Levi called “Mulatto” – John Goyen called “Gentleman”. (see links below for full text – very difficult to read due to shadows on document):
Fairfield County:
“Before me personally appeared Becky Elliot formerly Becky Gowen by a former husband David Gowen and after be duly sowrn deposith and said that she had a son by the afore David ____ David Goyen who about fourteen years ago left this county land as she was informed went to Cumberland River in N Carolina and was there killed by the Indians. The deponent further saith on oath that Levi Gowen who now appoints John Gowen of his attorney is the full and oldest brother to the aforesaid David Gowen.
Sworn tby affidavit this 17th day of Sept 1792 before me Benj Boyd J. FC.
Becky Elliot (x her mark)
Fairfield County: I hereby certify that the above named Levi Gowen ___ as the County for a free Mulatto got i ward was born her.
Given under my hand this 17th day of September 1792.”
Benj Boyd J. FC.
Fairfield Co, SC
http://www.ken-shelton.com/Fairfield/Deeds/Bond_A/Bond_A_0135a.tif
http://www.ken-shelton.com/Fairfield/Deeds/Bond_A/Bond_A_0136a.tif

1784 Jan 15 – John Gowan – Levi Gowan, David Gowan
1793 June 26 – 640 acr on the E side of Mill Creek.  Davidson Co., TN
http://www.nclandgrants.com/grant/?mars=12.14.2.1816&qid=82716&rn=3

1794 May 19: John Gowen received on May 19, 1794 640 acres from the State of North Carolina on Warrant No. 350. The land lay on Mill Creek about one-half mile west of his father’s pre-emption site, between land grants of Ebenzer Titus. Cleve Weathers, a descendant of Nashville, identifies the section as the one which was issued to David Gowen who was killed in 1780 “in the settlement and defense of Nashville.”
The land was described in Davidson County Deed Book C, page 281:
“State of North Carolina to John Gowen . . . 640 acres on the East side of Mill Creek . . . beginning at a white walnut on the bank of Mill Creek, being the Northwest corner of James Meness’s guard right on the East boundary line of said Meness’ preemption, thence East 390 poles to a dogwood on Ebenezer Titus’s West boundary line, then north 340 poles to a hickory, thence West 164 poles to a sycamore on the bank of said creek, thence up said creek with its meanders 333 poles to a poplar on said Meness’s East boundary line, then South with said line to the beginning 120 poles.”

1798 Mar 10 – John Gowen to Jonathan Phillips – 150 acres Mill Cr – part of a tract of 640 acres granted to the sd John Gowen by Patent No. 395 dated June 26th 1793, originally entered in the name of David Gowen’s heirs etc No. 115 Jan 15 1784 and transfered to the sd John Gowen Oct 30, 1792 … Signed: John Gowen LS. Wit: Andrew Ewing. Deed bk D, p 416. Davidson County, TN.
https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3Q9M-CS4R-1S99-L?i=238&cat=229234

1785 – David Going listed on the Virginia Census – head of household with 4 members white – no blacks. Halifax Co, Va. – pg 89.  Halifax Co, Va.
http://www2.census.gov/prod2/decennial/documents/1790m-03.pdf

1786 Aug 14 – John Gowen, David Gowen, Daniel Gowen, Rebecca Gowen, William Gowen, Levi Gowen
William Gowen – grandfather of David
John Gowen – (son of William, and called brother (actually 1st cousin) of Daniel) given power of attorney to do land transaction.
Daniel Gowen and Rebecca Gowen – parents of David Gowen b. ? – d. 1779-80 killed by Indians.
– Levi Gowen – brother of David Gowen
The indents, issued by the Treasury August 14, 1786, were approved long after the death of David Gowen of Fairfield County, son of Daniel Gowen and Rebecca Gowen.  David Gowen was killed by Indians in the winter of 1779-80 at Manskers Station in Davidson County, Tennessee.  William Gowen, regarded as his grandfather, was the executor of his estate at Nashville.  Levi Gowen, “who passes for mulatto,” brother of David Gowen, applied successful for the administration of the estate in Fairfield County and gave “John Gowen, gentleman of Daverson County” his power of attorney.  John Gowen, son of William Gowen, was a kinsman of Levi Gowen and David Gowen.
Fairfield Co, SC
(Alexander Gowen had died in 1775, Daniel Gowen had died in 1785 (a year before this affid), so likely the closest people they knew with responsibility/respect in area were uncle William Gowen – still alive, and cousin John Gowen).
Gowen Manuscript info on David Gowen to sort out:
http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~gowenrf/nl199101.pdf

David Gowen, son of Daniel Gowen and Rebecca Gowen, was born about 1763 in Fairfield County, according to an affidavit of his mother September 17, 1792. He served in the militia regiment commanded by Col. Benjamin Roebuck of adjoining Spartanburg County about 1779. The estate of David Gowen received “12 pounds, 4 shillings and 3 and one-half pence sterling for duty in Roebucks Regiment,” according to a state in¬dent dated August 9, 1786, appearing in “Stub Entries to Indents.” The beneficiaries of the estate were not identified.

In a power of attorney signed by Levi Gowen, his brother, it is stated that “four mulatto went to the Cumberland River in the year 1779 and were killed by the Indians in the year 1780.”

It is believed that David Gowen accompanied William Gowen, believed to be his grandfather, in a move to the new settlements on the Cumberland River at Ft. Nashboro, Tennessee.

David Gowen received from the state of North Carolina Pre¬emption Claim No. 260 to “640 acres on the south side of the Cumberland River” in Davidson County, according to “North Carolina Land Grants in Tennessee, 1778-1791.” A pre¬emption claim indicates actual residence.

“David Goin and Risby Kennedy were killed at Mansco’s Lick Station by Indians in the winter of 1780,” according to “Old Days of Nashville” by Jane Thomas. She adds “In the morning when Mansco’s Lick Station was broken up, two young men who had slept a little later than their companions were shot by two guns pointed through a porthole by the Indians. These were David Goin and Patrick Quigley.”

J. T. Moore, writing in his book, “Tennessee, the Volunteer State,” page 180, reported the incident as, “David Goin and a companion were killed at Mansco’s Station near Nashville by Indians while they were sleeping. Unaware that the other members of their party had pulled out of the fortress before dawn, the two slept late and were shot by Indians through the portholes of the fort’s walls in 1780.” John Carr in his book “Early Times in Tennessee” states that “David Goin was killed in 1778.”

In the official records of Nashville it was recorded that “David Gowine was killed in the settlement and defense of Nashville by Indians.” He is believed to have been 18 years old and un¬married. The attacks of the Creeks were fierce and savage dur¬ing the period, and many of the Davidson County settlers with¬drew back eastward for safety.

On March 4, 1783 “William Goings entered into bond with James Shaw, security, in penalty of 200 pounds specie” and was granted the administration of “the estate of David Goings, deceased” by the Nashville committee.

In Davidson County Will Book 1, Entry 11, is recorded:

“An inventory of the estate of David Gowine, deceased, “who died in the year 1781.” Recorded in the proceedings of the committee, Davidson County, North Carolina, 1781, was “To wit: some cows and calves, one gun, one bull, weeding hoe, one buckskin, one handkerchief, one pair breeches [or buckles?]. Total value, 19 pounds, one shilling.”

The return of the estate was signed by William Gowen, administrator.

Shortly afterwards “William Gowens” sued John Gibson in a “plea of detinue” [action to regain personal property wrongfully detained] as administrator of the estate of “David Gowens, deceased” and was awarded “two pounds for a heifer he disposed of,” according to Nashville court records.

On May 10, 1784 the Nashville Committee voted that “640 acres of land in the Nashville area be deeded “to the heirs or devisees of David Gowin killed in the settlement and defense of Nashville.” This was probably done in conjunction with Land Grant No. 260 issued to “David Gowan” for 640 acres.

The Davidson County Court Minute Book records that “William Gowens” sued the heirs of “David Gowens” in the January, 1788 session of court. The defendants did not appear in court, and the court awarded to the plaintiff “27 pounds, 14 shillings and three pence in damages.”

Edythe Rucker Whitley in “Tennessee Genealogical Records of Davidson County, Tennessee” wrote:

“David Gowen, who was killed by Indians in defense of Tennessee about 1779-80, received a posthumous land grant of 640 acres in 1783. His father [error], William Gowen, was one of the signors of the Cumberland Compact entered into by settlers on the Cumberland River May 1, 1780.”

The property of David Gowen was inherited by his brother, Levi Gowen, September 17, 1792, according to Fairfield County Deed Book A, pages 162-164:

Cleve Weatthers, an attorney of Nashville, Tennessee and a Gowen descendant wrote an analysis of the power of attorney executed by Levi Gowen”

Comments on the 1792 Power of Attorney by Levi Goyen
and the Supporting Affidavit by Becky Elliot
by Cleve Weathers — March 2001

My comments are followed by the copies of the documents that I have transcribed as carefully as possible. If you are reading these documents as e-mail rather than as an attached file, then some of the formatting will be off. However, the I think the substance of data will remain. Where you see words abbreviated, the last character of the word was in superscript in the original document with the period directly under the superscripted letter. I do not know how to duplicate that “directly underneath period” in my word processor. I have attached this file in RTF format to achieve as universal compatibility in form as possible.

After studying the following power of attorney executed by Levi Goyen and the supporting affidavit if Becky Elliot in 1792, I think it is clear that both instruments were drawn either by a lawyer or by good court clerk. My perception is that although the Fairfield County area of South Carolina may no longer have been frontier territory in 1792, it was still more or less backwoods country. Considering this, I think both documents were well crafted for their place and era.

My guess is that Levi and Becky came to either the attorney or clerk and told a rather long rambling story of their son and brother going to Davidson County many years earlier and that as a result of David being killed that his heirs had inherited his rights to a cheap preemption grant of 640 acres from the State of North Carolina. The original pioneers who did not flee elsewhere, even temporarily because of the Indian attacks, were also entitled to the same preemption grants. The attorney or clerk then reduced the long rambling story to its essentials either composing it in their presence or asking them to come back later.

I think that neither Becky nor Levi would have had any effective control over the specific wording of the documents even if they had been literate. I think there should be little doubt that it was the drafter of the documents who decided that David and Levi should be identified as Mulatto and John Gowen (John Goyen in the power of attorney) as “gentleman.” I have seen enough Tennessee and Virginia early legal documents using the terminology “well beloved friend” and “trusty friend” to suspect these may have been boilerplate language. No doubt powers of attorney were not granted to enemies or to those one knew to be frequently unfair in his dealings. However, I think it is inappropriate to assume that those terms necessarily were entirely accurate in describing a personal relationship between the grantor and grantee of the power. One of several possibilities is that John Gowen was the only person that Levi Goyen knew in Davidson County, Tennessee or the entire region. It is also possible that he only knew him by reputation, rather than personally.

In Davidson County, the use the term “gentleman” was used somewhat sparingly to refer to persons who had both achieved considerable material success and had a reputation for gentlemanly behavior. My ancestor Capt. John Rains, for instance, achieved quite a bit of material success, and was a highly respected, even legendary, Longhunter and militia leader. He appears to have been honest but was a bit of a ruffian. (Actually he may have been the baddest ruffian in a frontier town that had many ruffians including Andrew Jackson, who served as private under Capt. John. Capt. John’s usual defense to assault and battery charges was that the victim deserved it.) Although quite a bit has been written about Capt. John, I have never seen him referred to as a “gentleman” even though he had a son who was also a captain in the militia, one son-in-law who was sheriff of the county and another who was an early Mayor of Nashville. Unlike Capt. John Rains, I really do not have sufficient information to have an opinion about John Gowen’s character, but he was reasonably successful in his material affairs.

However, knowing generally how the white power structure in South Carolina worked in this era and its more harsh racial code, as opposed to say Virginia, it crosses my mind that we cannot assume the same sparing use of the term occurred in this instance. It is possible that drafter would require a mulatto to refer to pretty much any white person as a “gentleman.” I suspect that if Levi Goyen had suggested that to the clerk or attorney that John Gowen of Davidson County was of mixed race descent, then the drafter would not only have avoided the use of the term “gentleman,” he would have refused to have used it even if requested.

I do not think we can draw any conclusions from the variable spellings of surnames found in these documents.

Finally, I have learned one new interesting tidbit of genealogical history from these documents, which is that David/Daniel Goyen, Sr. and wife Becky were presumably living in Fairfield County at least by 1774 since Levi was reportedly born there. I am assuming he was at least 18 years old when this power of attorney was granted.

Fairfield County, South Carolina Deeds
Book A, pp. 162-164
Power of Attorney granted by Levi Goyen to John Goyen
followed by Affidavit of Becky Elliot

Know all Men by these presents, that I Levi Goyen of the State of South Carolina Fairfield County and for divers and good causes & considerations me herewith____ing [receiving?], have made[,] ordained[,] Constituted and appointed and by these presents for me, my heirs Extr ____ and any of them do make and ordain Constitute and appoint my trusty and well beloved friend, John Goyen of the state of North Carolina Daverson County, Gentm. my true and lawful attorney for me to take out the rights in him, the said John Goyen’s own name to sell, make over, convey and confirm at his pleasure unto whoever may or shall agree with & purchase of him the said John Goyen a certain tract or parcel of land lying & being on Mill Creek of the east side of Daverson County aforesaid, the said land being first in the name of David Goyen, decd. Four Mullato went to Cumberland River in the year 1779, and were killed by the Indians in the year 1780, and left the said Mula tto Levi Goyen, his proper heir in law[,] the said parcel of land contg six hundred and forty acres and I do hereby grant unto my said Attorney, my sole and full power & authority to take, persue and follow such legal course for transferring the Right of sd land unto himself as I myself might or could do were I personally present[,] Ratifying & Confirming whatsoever my said attorney shall lawfully do or cause to be Done in & about the Execution of the foresaid by virtue of these presents. In witness whereof I have herewith set my hand & seal the 17th September in the year of our Lord, one thousand, seven hundred and ninety two.

Signed, sealed in the presence aforesd McMinn Easley.

his
Levi X Gowen (LG)
mark

Levi Gowen made his mark as his Signature to the above
Instrument of writing in my presence.
Benjm. Boyd

Fairfield
County Before me personally appeared Becky Elliot formerly Becky Gowen by a former Husband David [Daniel?] Gowen & after be[ing] duly sworn Deposeth and saith that she had a son by the afsd. David named David Goyen who about fourteen years ago left this county and as she was informed went to Cumberland River in N Carolina was there killed by the Indians sd. deponent further saith on oath that Levi Gowen who now appoints John Gowen as his atty is the full & oldest Brother of the afsd. David Gowen

her
Becky X Elcot
mark
Sworn & subscribed this }
17 day of Sept. 1792. before me }
Benjm. Boyd JFC

Fairfield
County I do hereby certify that the above named Levi Gowen passeth in this County aford. as free Mulatto and it is said was Born here.

Given under my hand this 17th day of Septemr. 1792.
Benjm. Boyd J.F.C.

Fairfield County, South Carolina

I do hereby certify that Benjamin Boyd Esqr. is one of the Judges of this our County Court & that full faith and credit is to be given to the above and to his signature the being his proper handwriting.

Given under my hand & seal of office
this 18th day of September the year
of our Lord 1792. & the 16th of American
Independence.

Recorded 18th Sept:92 D. C. Evans C.F.C.

“I, Levi Goyen of Fairfield County, give power of attorney to my trusty and well-beloved friend, John Goyen of Daverson County, North Carolina, gentleman to sell a certain tract of land on Mill Creek of the East Side of Daverson County aforesaid, the said land being first in the hands of David Goyen, decd. . . . . Four mulatto went to Cumberland River in the year 1779 and were killed by the Indians in the year 1780 and left the said Mulatto, Levi Goyen, his proper heir-at-law, tract of land containing 640 acres. Dated September 17, 1792.
Levi [X] Goyen
Witnesses: William Easley, Benj. Boyd

On the same date, Beckey Gowen, the mother of David Gowen and Levi Gowen, filed an affidavit to support his power of attorney:

“Fairfield County, South Carolina. Personally appeared Beckey Eliot, Beckey Gowen by a former husband Daniel Gowen, and deposeth that she had a son by the said Daniel Gowen named David Goyen who about 14 years ago left this county and, as she was informed, went to Cumberland River in North Carolina and was there killed by the Indians. Said deponent further saith that Levi Gowen who now appoints John Gowen as his attorney is the full and oldest brother of the aforesaid David Gowen.

Signed by Becky Eliot September 17, 1792 before Benj. Boyd, J.F.C. [Boyd also certified on the same date that the above named Levi Gowen passeth in the county for a free mulatto, and it is said was born here.'”
1786 Aug 14 – John Gowen, David Gowen, Daniel Gowen, Rebecca Gowen, William Gowen, Levi Gowen
William Gowen – grandfather of David
John Gowen – (son of William, and called brother (actually 1st cousin) of Daniel) given power of attorney to do land transaction.
Daniel Gowen and Rebecca Gowen – parents of David Gowen b. ? – d. 1779-80 killed by Indians.
– Levi Gowen – brother of David Gowen
The indents, issued by the Treasury August 14, 1786, were approved long after the death of David Gowen of Fairfield County, son of Daniel Gowen and Rebecca Gowen.  David Gowen was killed by Indians in the winter of 1779-80 at Manskers Station in Davidson County, Tennessee.  William Gowen, regarded as his grandfather, was the executor of his estate at Nashville.  Levi Gowen, “who passes for mulatto,” brother of David Gowen, applied successful for the administration of the estate in Fairfield County and gave “John Gowen, gentleman of Daverson County” his power of attorney.  John Gowen, son of William Gowen, was a kinsman of Levi Gowen and David Gowen.
Fairfield Co, SC
(Alexander Gowen had died in 1775, Daniel Gowen had died in 1785 (a year before this affid), so likely the closest people they knew with responsibility/respect in area were uncle William Gowen – still alive, and cousin John Gowen).

David Gowen, son of Daniel Gowen and Rebecca Gowen, was born about 1763 in Fairfield County, according to an affidavit of his mother September 17, 1792.

He served in the militia regiment commanded by Col. Benjamin Roebuck of adjoining Spartanburg County about 1779.

The estate of David Gowen received “£12:4:3 1/2 sterling for duty in Roebucks Regiment,” according to a state indent dated August 9, 1786, appearing in “Stub Entries to Indents.”

The beneficiaries of the estate were not identified.

In a power of attorney signed by Levi Gowen, his brother, it is stated that “four mulatto went to the Cumberland River in the year 1779 and were killed by the Indians in the year 1780.”

It is believed that David Gowen accompanied William Gowen, regarded as a kinsman, in a move to the new settlements on the Cumberland River at Ft. Nashboro, Tennessee.

David Gowen received from the state of North Carolina Preemption Claim No. 260 to “640 acres on the south side of the Cumberland River” in Davidson County, according to “North Carolina Land Grants in Tennessee, 1778-1791.”  A preemption claim normally indicates actual residence.

“David Goin and Risby Kennedy were killed at Mansco’s Lick Station by Indians in the winter of 1780,” according to “Old Days of Nashville” by Jane Thomas.  She adds, “In the morning when Mansco’s Lick Station was broken up, two young men who had slept a little later than their companions were shot by two guns pointed through a porthole by the Indians.  These were David Goin and Patrick Quigley.”

J. T. Moore, writing in his book, “Tennessee, the Volunteer State,” page 180, reported the incident as,

“David Goin and a companion were killed at Mansco’s Station near Nashville by Indians while they were sleeping.  Unaware that the other members of their party had pulled out of the fortress before dawn, the two slept late and were shot by Indians through the portholes of the fort’s walls in 1780.”

John Carr in his book “Early Times in Tennessee” states that “David Goin was killed in 1778.”

In the official records of Nashville it was recorded that “David Gowine was killed in the settlement and defense of Nashville by Indians.”  He is believed to have been 18 years old and unmarried.  The attacks of the Creeks were fierce and savage during the period, and many of the Davidson County settlers withdrew back to safety.

On March 4, 1783 “William Goings entered into bond with James Shaw, security, in penalty of £200 pounds specie” and was granted the administration of “the estate of David Goings, deceased” by the Nashville committee.

In Davidson County Will Book 1, Entry 11, is recorded:

“An inventory of the estate of David Gowine, deceased, “who died in the year 1781.”  Recorded in the proceedings of the committee, Davidson County, North Carolina, 1781, was “To wit: some cows and calves, one gun, one bull, weeding hoe, one buckskin, one handkerchief, one pair breeches [or buckles?].  Total value, £19:1.”

The return of the estate was signed by  William Gowen, administrator.

Shortly afterwards “William Gowens” sued John Gibson in a “plea of detinue” [action to regain personal property wrongfully detained] as administrator of the estate of “David Gowens, deceased” and was awarded “two pounds for a heifer he disposed of,” according to Nashville court records.

On May 10, 1784 the Nashville Committee voted that “640 acres of land in the Nashville area be deeded “to the heirs or devisees of David Gowin killed in the settlement and defense of Nashville.”  This was probably done in conjunction with Land Grant No. 260 issued to “David Gowan” for 640 acres.

The Davidson County Court Minute Book records that “Wiliam Gowens sued the heirs of David Gowens” in the January, 1788 session of court.  The defendants did not appear in court, and the court awarded to the plaintiff “£27:14:3 in damages.”

Edythe Rucker Whitley in “Tennessee Genealogical Records of Davidson County, Tennessee” wrote:

“David Gowen, who was killed by Indians in defense of Tennessee about 1779-80, received a posthumous land grant of 640 acres in 1783.  His father, William Gowen, [error], was one of the signors of the Cumberland Compact entered into by settlers on the Cumberland River May 1, 1780.”

The property of David Gowen was inherited by his brother, Levi Gowen, September 17, 1792, according to Fairfield County Deed Book A, pages 162-164:

“I, Levi Goyen of Fairfield County, give power of attorney to my trusty and well-beloved friend, John Goyen of Daverson County, North Carolina, gentleman to sell a certain tract of land on Mill Creek of the East Side of Daverson County afore­said, the said land being first in the hands of David Goyen, decd. . . . . Four mulatto went to Cumberland River in the year 1779 and were killed by the Indians in the year 1780 and left the said Mulatto, Levi Goyen, his proper heir-at-law, tract of land containing 640 acres.  Dated September 17, 1792.
Levi [X] Goyen
Witnesses:                                                                William Easley, Benj. Boyd

John Goyen above is identified as John Gowen, his first cousin once-removed, the son of William Gowen, the pre-emptor of Davidson County, Tennessee.

On the same date, Beckey Gowen, the mother of David Gowen and Levi Gowen, filed an affidavit to support his power of attorney:

“Fairfield County, South Carolina.  Personally ap­peared Beckey Eliot, Beckey Gowen by a former husband Daniel Gowen, and deposeth that she had a son by the said Daniel Gowen named David Goyen who about 14 years ago left this county and, as she was informed, went to Cumberland River in North Carolina and was there killed by the Indians.  Said deponent further saith that Levi Gowen who now appoints John Gowen as his attorney is the full and oldest brother of the afore­said David Gowen.

Signed by Becky Eliot September 17, 1792 before Benj. Boyd, J.F.C.  [Boyd also certified on the same date that the above named Levi Gowen passeth in the county for a free mulatto, and it is said was born here.'”

David Gowen, son of Daniel Gowen and Rebecca Gowen, was born about 1763 in Fairfield County, according to an affidavit of his mother September 17, 1792.  He served in the militia regiment commanded by Col. Benjamin Roebuck of adjoining Spartanburg County about 1779.  The estate of David Gowen received “12 pounds, 4 shillings and 3 and one-half pence ster­ling for duty in Roebucks Regiment,” according to a state in­dent dated August 9, 1786, appearing in “Stub Entries to In­dents.” The beneficiaries of the estate were not identified.

In a power of attorney signed by Levi Gowen, his brother, it is stated that “four mulatto went to the Cumberland River in the year 1779 and were killed by the Indians in the year 1780.”

It is believed that David Gowen accompanied William Gowen, believed to be his grandfather, in a move to the new settlements on the Cumberland River at Ft. Nashboro, Tennessee.

David Gowen received from the state of North Carolina Pre­emption Claim No. 260 to “640 acres on the south side of the Cumberland River” in Davidson County, according to “North Carolina Land Grants in Tennessee, 1778-1791.”  A pre­emption claim indicates actual residence.

“David Goin and Risby Kennedy were killed at Mansco’s Lick Station by Indians in the winter of 1780,” according to “Old Days of Nashville” by Jane Thomas.  She adds “In the morning when Mansco’s Lick Station was broken up, two young men who had slept a little later than their companions were shot by two guns pointed through a porthole by the Indians.  These were David Goin and Patrick Quigley.”

J. T. Moore, writing in his book, “Tennessee, the Volunteer State,” page 180, reported the incident as, “David Goin and a companion were killed at Mansco’s Station near Nashville by Indians while they were sleeping.  Unaware that the other members of their party had pulled out of the fortress before dawn, the two slept late and were shot by Indians through the portholes of the fort’s walls in 1780.”  John Carr in his book “Early Times in Tennessee” states that “David Goin was killed in 1778.”

In the official records of Nashville it was recorded that “David Gowine was killed in the settlement and defense of Nashville by Indians.”  He is believed to have been 18 years old and un­married.  The attacks of the Creeks were fierce and savage dur­ing the period, and many of the Davidson County settlers with­drew back eastward for safety.

On March 4, 1783 “William Goings entered into bond with James Shaw, security, in penalty of 200 pounds specie” and was granted the administration of “the estate of David Goings, deceased” by the Nashville committee.

In Davidson County Will Book 1, Entry 11, is recorded:

“An inventory of the estate of David Gowine, deceased, “who died in the year 1781.”  Recorded in the proceed­ings of the committee, Davidson County, North Car­olina, 1781, was “To wit: some cows and calves, one gun, one bull, weeding hoe, one buckskin, one handker­chief, one pair breeches [or buckles?].  Total value, 19 pounds, one shilling.”

The return of the estate was signed by  William Gowen, ad­ministrator.

Shortly afterwards “William Gowens” sued John Gibson in a “plea of detinue” [action to regain personal property wrongfully detained] as administrator of the estate of “David Gowens, de­ceased” and was awarded “two pounds for a heifer he disposed of,” according to Nashville court records.

On May 10, 1784 the Nashville Committee voted that “640 acres of land in the Nashville area be deeded “to the heirs or devisees of David Gowin killed in the settlement and defense of Nashville.”  This was probably done in conjunction with Land Grant No. 260 issued to “David Gowan” for 640 acres.

The Davidson County Court Minute Book records that “William Gowens” sued the heirs of “David Gowens” in the January, 1788 session of court.  The defendants did not appear in court, and the court awarded to the plaintiff “27 pounds, 14 shillings and three pence in damages.”

Edythe Rucker Whitley in “Tennessee Genealogical Records of Davidson County, Tennessee” wrote:

“David Gowen, who was killed by Indians in defense of Tennessee about 1779-80, received a posthumous land grant of 640 acres in 1783.  His father [error], William Gowen, was one of the signors of the Cumberland Compact entered into by settlers on the Cumberland River May 1, 1780.”

The property of David Gowen was inherited by his brother, Levi Gowen, September 17, 1792, according to Fairfield County Deed Book A, pages 162-164:

Cleve Weatthers, an attorney of Nashville, Tennessee and a Gowen descendant wrote an analysis of the power of attorney executed by Levi Gowen”

Comments on the 1792 Power of Attorney by Levi Goyen
and the Supporting Affidavit by Becky Elliot
by Cleve Weathers — March 2001

My comments are followed by the copies of the documents that I have transcribed as carefully as possible.  If you are reading these documents as e-mail rather than as an attached file, then some of the formatting will be off.  However, the I think the substance of data will remain.  Where you see words abbreviated, the last character of the word was in superscript in the original document with the period directly under the superscripted letter.  I do not know how to duplicate that “directly underneath period” in my word processor.  I have attached this file in RTF format to achieve as universal compatibility in form as possible.

After studying the following power of attorney executed by Levi Goyen and the supporting affidavit if Becky Elliot in 1792, I think it is clear that both instruments were drawn either by a lawyer or by good court clerk.  My perception is that although the Fairfield County area of South Carolina may no longer have been frontier territory in 1792, it was still more or less backwoods country.  Considering this, I think both documents were well crafted for their place and era.

My guess is that Levi and Becky came to either the attorney or clerk and told a rather long rambling story of their son and brother going to Davidson County many years earlier and that as a result of David being killed that his heirs had inherited his rights to a cheap preemption grant of 640 acres from the State of North Carolina.  The original pioneers who did not flee elsewhere, even temporarily because of the Indian attacks, were also entitled to the same preemption grants.  The attorney or clerk then reduced the long rambling story to its essentials either composing it in their presence or asking them to come back later.

I think that neither Becky nor Levi would have had any effective control over the specific wording of the documents even if they had been literate.  I think there should be little doubt that it was the drafter of the documents who decided that David and Levi should be identified as Mulatto and John Gowen (John Goyen in the power of attorney) as “gentleman.”  I have seen enough Tennessee and Virginia early legal documents using the terminology “well beloved friend” and “trusty friend” to suspect these may have been boilerplate language.  No doubt powers of attorney were not granted to enemies or to those one knew to be frequently unfair in his dealings. However, I think it is inappropriate to assume that those terms necessarily were entirely accurate in describing a personal relationship between the grantor and grantee of the power.  One of several possibilities is that John Gowen was the only person that Levi Goyen knew in Davidson County, Tennessee or the entire region.  It is also possible that he only knew him by reputation, rather than personally.

In Davidson County, the use the term “gentleman” was used somewhat sparingly to refer to persons who had both achieved considerable material success and had a reputation for gentlemanly behavior.  My ancestor Capt. John Rains, for instance, achieved quite a bit of material success, and was a highly respected, even legendary, Longhunter and militia leader.  He appears to have been honest but was a bit of a ruffian.  (Actually he may have been the baddest ruffian in a frontier town that had many ruffians including Andrew Jackson, who served as private under Capt. John.  Capt. John’s usual defense to assault and battery charges was that the victim deserved it.)  Although quite a bit has been written about Capt. John, I have never seen him referred to as a “gentleman” even though he had a son who was also a captain in the militia, one son-in-law who was sheriff of the county and another who was an early Mayor of Nashville.  Unlike Capt. John Rains, I really do not have sufficient information to have an opinion about John Gowen’s character, but he was reasonably successful in his material affairs.

However, knowing generally how the white power structure in South Carolina worked in this era and its more harsh racial code, as opposed to say Virginia, it crosses my mind that we cannot assume the same sparing use of the term occurred in this instance.  It is possible that drafter would require a mulatto to refer to pretty much any white person as a “gentleman.”  I suspect that if Levi Goyen had suggested that to the clerk or attorney that John Gowen of Davidson County was of mixed race descent, then the drafter would not only have avoided the use of the term “gentleman,” he would have refused to have used it even if requested.

I do not think we can draw any conclusions from the variable spellings of surnames found in these documents.

Finally, I have learned one new interesting tidbit of genealogical history from these documents, which is that David/Daniel Goyen, Sr. and wife Becky were presumably living in Fairfield County at least by 1774 since Levi was reportedly born there.  I am assuming he was at least 18 years old when this power of attorney was granted.

Fairfield County, South Carolina Deeds
Book A, pp. 162-164
Power of Attorney granted by Levi Goyen to John Goyen
followed by Affidavit of Becky Elliot

Know all Men by these presents, that I Levi Goyen of the State of South Carolina  Fairfield County and for divers and good causes & considerations me herewith____ing [receiving?], have made[,] ordained[,] Constituted and appointed and by these presents for me, my heirs Extr ____ and any of them do make and ordain Constitute and appoint my trusty and well beloved friend, John Goyen of the state of North Carolina Daverson County, Gentm. my true and lawful attorney for me to take out the rights in him, the said John Goyen’s own name to sell, make over, convey and confirm at his pleasure unto whoever may or shall agree with & purchase of him the said John Goyen a certain tract or parcel of land lying & being on Mill Creek of the east side of Daverson County aforesaid, the said land being first in the name of David Goyen, decd.  Four Mullato went to Cumberland River in the year 1779, and were killed by the Indians in the year 1780, and left the said Mula tto Levi Goyen, his proper heir in law[,] the said parcel of land contg six hundred and forty acres and I do hereby grant unto my said Attorney, my sole and full power & authority to take, persue and follow such legal course for transferring the Right of sd land unto himself as I myself might or could do were I personally present[,] Ratifying & Confirming whatsoever my said attorney shall lawfully do or cause to be Done in & about the Execution of the foresaid by virtue of these presents.  In witness whereof I have herewith set my hand & seal the 17th September in the year of our Lord, one thousand, seven hundred and ninety two.

Signed, sealed in the presence aforesd McMinn Easley.

his
Levi X Gowen  (LG)
mark

Levi Gowen made his mark as his Signature to the above
Instrument of writing in my presence.
Benjm. Boyd

Fairfield
County     Before me personally appeared Becky Elliot formerly Becky Gowen by a former Husband David [Daniel?] Gowen & after be[ing] duly sworn Deposeth and saith that she had a son by the afsd. David named David Goyen who about fourteen years ago left this county and as she was informed went to Cumberland River in N Carolina was there killed by the Indians sd. deponent further saith on oath that Levi Gowen who now appoints John Gowen as his atty is the full & oldest Brother of the afsd. David Gowen

her
Becky X Elcot
mark
Sworn & subscribed this                }
17 day of Sept. 1792. before me }
Benjm. Boyd  JFC

Fairfield
County      I do hereby certify that the above named Levi Gowen passeth in this County aford. as free Mulatto and it is said was Born here.

Given under my hand this 17th day of Septemr. 1792.
Benjm. Boyd   J.F.C.

Fairfield County, South Carolina

I do hereby certify that Benjamin Boyd Esqr. is one of the Judges of this our County Court & that full faith and credit is to be given to the above and to his signature the being his proper handwriting.

Given under my hand & seal of office
this 18th day of September the year
of our Lord 1792. & the 16th of American
Independence.

Recorded 18th Sept:92           D. C. Evans    C.F.C.

“I, Levi Goyen of Fairfield County, give power of at­torney to my trusty and well-beloved friend, John Goyen of Daverson County, North Carolina, gentleman to sell a certain tract of land on Mill Creek of the East Side of Daverson County aforesaid, the said land being first in the hands of David Goyen, decd. . . . . Four mu­latto went to Cumberland River in the year 1779 and were killed by the Indians in the year 1780 and left the said Mulatto, Levi Goyen, his proper heir-at-law, tract of land containing 640 acres.  Dated September 17, 1792.
Levi [X] Goyen
Witnesses:                                    William Easley, Benj. Boyd

On the same date, Beckey Gowen, the mother of David Gowen and Levi Gowen, filed an affidavit to support his power of at­torney:

“Fairfield County, South Carolina.  Personally appeared Beckey Eliot, Beckey Gowen by a former husband Daniel Gowen, and deposeth that she had a son by the said Daniel Gowen named David Goyen who about 14 years ago left this county and, as she was informed, went to Cumberland River in North Carolina and was there killed by the Indians.  Said deponent further saith that Levi Gowen who now appoints John Gowen as his attorney is the full and oldest brother of the aforesaid David Gowen.

Signed by Becky Eliot September 17, 1792 before Benj. Boyd, J.F.C.  [Boyd also certified on the same date that the above named Levi Gowen passeth in the county for a free mulatto, and it is said was born here.'”

Donna Gowin Johnston inspected the documents and wrote the following report:

On LDS #1,294,177 Fairfield County, South Carolina Court Minutes, 1785-1799:

Regarding the document dated October 24, 1785, the subject’s name is written as “Rebeccah Elliot.”  Her present husband was John Elliot, and her former husband was Daniel Gowen.

On LDS #0,023,991 Fairfield County, South Carolina Deed Book A (2nd Book) p.162-164.  There are two deed books marked “Deed Book A.”  I thought the second book might just be a continuation of the first, but they both start with page one.
I have never seen this before and I have read many, many films of deeds in many, many areas of our country.

On September 17, 1792, Fairfield County, South Carolina, the deposition given by Becky at the end of this power of attorney on pages 162-164 does in fact show her as “Becky Elliot” in the body of the document and “Becky Elcot [her X mark]” at the end of the document.  It also states that her former husband was “David Goyen” and that her son was also, David.

I find it curious that in 1785, she, the recorder, and everyone present were comfortable with her husband’s name as Daniel, but seven years later in 1792, her former husband was called David.

Cleve Weathers made several minor errors in transcribing the power of attorney, but only one affects any factual information.  Near the end where Levi Gowen makes his mark, the document is “Signed, sealed & del’d in the presence of us William Easley.”  The name is not McMinn Easley.

I will stick my neck out to make one comment.  In this power of attorney, we have the following naming descrepancies

Daverson County – Davidson County
Levi Goyen – Gowen
Becky Elliot – Elcot
John Goyen – Gowen

With these examples of very lax and careless recording of information, why then, is so much credence placed on the title “Gentleman” that this recorder placed after John Goyen-Gowen’s name?”

 

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2 Responses to 1758 to 1763 David Gowen of Fairfield Co, SC and TN

  1. rick.tidwell@lamresearch.com says:

    I wonder if William Easley, the witness of Levi’s Power of Attorney, is John “Buck” Gowen’s son-in-law? Buck’s daughter, Sarah, married William Easley in 1789 and they still lived in Greenville County, SC at the time of the PoA. These are my direct ancestors.

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