William Douglass of Loudon, Virginia

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William Douglass (d 1782) was a resident of Loudon County, Virginia, and was appointed sheriff of that county in 1777. he was a son of Hugh Douglas of Garrallan and a descendant of Sir James Douglas of Kelhead.

Around 1750 there came from Scotland to this same country, north of the present Leesburg, that William Douglass who is to be so frequently mentioned by Nicholas Cresswell in his journal at the time of the Revolution. Colonel Douglass, as he afterward became, was the son of Hugh Douglass of Garrallan in Ayshire who, in turn, was sixth in descent from the Earl of Douglas and also a descendant of the Campbell Barons of Loudoun, thus making the Douglass family of Loudoun County kinsfolk to the Earl of Loudoun for whom the county was to be named. Our William Douglass owned the estates of Garalland and Montresor(1) in Loudoun, served as one of her justices (1770) and as sheriff in 1782. He died in the latter year, leaving a will which was probated on the 24th September 1782

He lived at his estate, Garralland, in Loudon Country north of Leesburg. This estate was named for Garrallan, Ayrshire, Scotland. He held several offices in the county including justice of the peace, coroner, and was appointed sheriff of that county in 1777. On 13th May 1777, Douglass presented his commission from the Virginia convention appointing him Captain of the Loudon County Militia.  He purchased the rank of Captain from William Fitzhugh at Fort Pitt.

(The then) Captain Douglas acquired land by financing expeditions, possibly against the Indians.

He and Elizabeth were married before 1761.

Elizabeth Offutt was the widow of Stephen Lewis of Fairfax Co, Va. They had five children: Elizabeth (1747-) m. Patterson; Thomas (1749-) m. Elizabeth Payne 1773; Jane (1752-) m. William Neilson of Scotland; Sally, m. Dr. Shrope, and Elizabeth, m. Smith. She was the daughter of Samuel Owen Offutt (18/10//1710 Berkeley Co-1761) and Elizabeth Hite (1/13/1715-). Wise says he is the son of Nathaniel Offutt and gives his birth date as 1710 (the same year his son is born!). He is said to be the son of William Offutt of Montgomery Co. who patented land called the "Younger Brother" in Prince George Co., and Mary Brock, daughter of Edward Brock of "Brock Hall."

William Douglass' executors gave bond for 10,000 pounds. His will (written 1780) mentions five daughters and two sons. Nance was left "five hundred Pounds Current money and her Second Choise of my horses & Mares for a Riding Creature for herself a Womans new Saddle and Bridle and a feather Bed and furniture the horse saddle and Bridge to be paid immediately after my Death & the money As soon as she Arrives at the Age of Eighteen or immediately after her marriage if She Shold marry Sooner." He divides his father's inheritance (if it can be obtained from England) between his children. On 9/24/1782, after his wife's death, he added "the Negroe Wench Molly I Leave her to be Sett free for the Good Services she has done me since I have been sick."



  • Catherine, m. Philip Smith Hale; lived near Warrensburg TN  
  • Elizabeth, m. William Dixon of Greenville TN
  • Nancy, m. Smith Hale
  • Hannah, m. Charles Binns of Leesburg Va.
  • Margaret
  • Gen. Hugh Douglas (Revolutionary Army), m. Catherine Nasmythe in England (his cousin)


His second marriage was to Sarah Orrick, widow of William Chilton (d. 1782); they had one son, Patrick Hume Douglas(3).


1.  The estate is named after the French mon tresor, my treasure. In 2024, the farm is owned by the McCarry family.

2.  Charles Alexander Binns (1763-1837), the second clerk of court of Leesburg, Virginia, married Hannah Douglass, the daughter of William Douglass, Sheriff of Loudoun County.

His grandfather (Charles Binns), his father (Charles Binns, Jr.), and his brother William all owned Rokeby in Leesburg. During the burning of Washington in 1814, the U.S. National treasures (the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Articles of Conferation) were housed in the vault in the basement of their estate. The first Charles Binns married Anne Alexander. Her father was a Scotsman named John Alexander for whom the city of Alexandria, Virginia was named.

3 Patrick Hume Douglas married Evelyn Beverley by whom he had two sons, Hugh Douglas and William Byrd Douglas.

William Byrd Douglas, known as Byrd, was born on 8 Dec 1815 in Loudon County, Virginia.

He and his brother Hugh went to live in Greenville, Tennessee with his uncle Dixon when they were young, after their father died, but not immediately. They learned the skills of merchants in his store, and then became merchants themselves (with his help and support) in Nashville.

In the 1850 census, he was living in Davidson, Tennessee with his second wife and a blended family, with what appears to be three of his children from the first marriage, one of hers from her first marriage, and two of theirs.

He was a Secessionist during the Civil War and was estranged from his brother Hugh, who was a Unionist. The estrangement between the two was not too bad, though, because Hugh helped William when William got put in jail for assisting the Confederacy.


His Scots ancestry and descendents are documented in Col. John Wise of England and Virginia (1617-1695) by C. Jennings Wise.

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Last modified: Friday, 17 May 2024