William Morris Chapter

Daughters of the American Revolution

Pratt, Kanawha County, West Virginia



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History of the William Morris Chapter, NSDAR

The William Morris Chapter was named in honor of William Morris, “Pioneer” of the Great Kanawha Valley. William Morris was born January 1, 1722, in England.  He came to the United States in 1736, at the age of 14.  History has it that he was at the shipyard in Liverpool, England, and boarded a ship out of curiosity.  While exploring the ship, unbeknown to him, it set sail.  It was 2 hours out of port before he was aware it had left dock.  A well-to-do gentleman aboard the ship from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania befriended 14 year-old William and provided him a home and an education.

William married Elizabeth Stepp, who was born in Orange County, Virginia, in 1729.  They had 10 children:  eight sons and two daughters:

  1. William Morris, Jr., married Catherine Carroll

  2. Henry Morris, married Mary Bird

  3. Leonard Morris, Sr., married first wife Margaret Price, 2nd wife Margaret Larkin.

  4. Joshua Morris, Sr., married Frances Simms

  5. John Morris, Sr., married Margaret Droddy.

  6. Archillas Morris, Sr., married Elizabeth Garrett.

  7. Levi Morris married first wife, Margaret Starke, 2nd wife, Margaret Jarrett.

  8. Benjamin Morris, Sr., married Nancy. 

  9. Elizabeth Morris, married Michael See.

  10. Frances Morris, married John Jones.

William Morris, Sr., died December 1, 1792.  His wife, Elizabeth, died in 1793. 

William Morris was guardian of Kelly’s Post and founder and defender of Fort Morris, the first fort on the Great Kanawha River.

He and his eight sons gave service from 1744 to 1792, first in the Dunmore War, the Battle of Point Pleasant and at different forts in the Great Kanawha Valley.

Mrs. Fenton Morris Brown, Organizing Regent, organized the William Morris Chapter, NSDAR, February 27, 1922 in Pratt, West Virginia.  The Chapter was confirmed by NSDAR on March 27, 1922, and the Charter issued March 13, 1944. 

On November 5, 1927, William Morris Chapter unveiled a marker at Virginia’s Chapel, “The Little Brick Church,” located in Cedar Grove. Inscribed on a bronze plate and imbedded in a bolder:

 In Honor and Memory of

William Morris

1722 - 1792

 

Founder and Defender of Fort Morris

The first Fort built on the great

Kanawha River in 1774 near this site

and school house and made

the first permanent white settlement

in the great Kanawha Valley

and of his wife

Elizabeth Stipps

1729-1795

This tablet erected by the

William Morris Chapter DAR

1927

Our chapter was strengthened in 1992, when a merger between the William Morris Chapter and Fort Lee Chapters was approved.  In 2009, our chapter was further strengthened when the Charleston Chapter merged with us. These mergers have brought with them new friendships and increased opportunities for service.

Past Regents of the William Morris Chapter:

 

 

*Mrs. Fenton Morris Brown      

Organizing Regent
 

*Mrs. Amanda Morris Dickinson         

1922-1928
 

*Mrs. Emma Dickinson Early               

1929-1931
 

*Miss Julia Morris Wintz                     

1931-1934
 

*Mrs. T. A. Scales                              

1934-1937
 

*Mrs. J. T. Sharp                                

1937-1939
 

*Mrs. Audra Davidson Peek &