I have a family history book that goes back to the 1400’s. It’s very detailed. It describes every person in my family, who they married, the names of their children, their occupation, and other relevant details including notable stories, handwritten letters, legal documents, and even photos. There is roughly 600 years worth of information in this book. It’s incredible.
As I was going through this book, one of the stories really stood out to me as something special and I want to share that story with you.
My Great (X4) Grandfather named Job Bowers was born in Virginia in 1755. He died in the revolutionary war in 1779 when he was just 24 years old. When America’s war for independence began, he was living in Georgia and joined his local militia to fight against the British.
In early October, he received word that his wife was going into labor with their first child. When he heard the news, he asked his commanding officer to grant him a weekend furlough which would allow him to return home for the weekend to be there for the birth of his son William. His request was approved and he rushed home to see his wife and newborn son.
Job, a soldier in time of war, made the trip back home by himself. Traveling through hostile territory alone while evading official British soldiers as well as Tories – also known as Loyalists because they remained loyal to the British and fought against the colonists in the war.
It was on the night of his arrival home when his wife went into active labor. Job was in the house as she was giving birth. During this time, a group of Tories came to Job’s house.
Whether this was simply a random band of Tories roaming from house to house or if they had heard news that a Patriot soldier had returned home by himself, without his fellow countrymen to protect him, remains unknown. However the outcome remained the same.
As his wife was giving birth to their first and only child, the Tories dragged Job out of his house and hanged him in the tree in his front yard. Job died on that cold October night in Georgia, in the front yard of his own house while his son was being born inside.
I thought this was such a powerful story. The sacrifices that Job made and the risks he took just to be able to be home with his family, were courageous and heroic. He ended up paying the ultimate price and sacrificing his life, just for the chance to have one moment with his wife and newborn son.
Had that little boy not been born that night, my bloodline would have died right then and there in that tree. That little boy named William would be the one to carry on the Bowers bloodline that is still growing strong even after nearly 250 years.
My family was awarded land for our service in the war. William would go on to build an entire town with that land and today that town is known as Bowersville, Georgia.