Birth: circa 1784 in Caswell County, North Carolina
Marriage: Mary “Polly” Elmore 04 November 1807 in Orange County, North Carolina
Death: September 1865 in Russell County, Virginia thought to be buried on Thompson Creek
David Compton was born in the Caswell County, NC area in about 1784 to Revolutionary War Veteran James Compton and his wife Frances Herndon Compton. The marriage record in Orange County, North Carolina dated November 4th, 1807 between David and his wife Polly, is the only public record of David in North Carolina. In late 1809 or early 1810, David and Polly decided to leave North Carolina and migrate to the frontier of Russell County, Virginia.
David Compton first appeared in public record in Russell County, Virginia on the 1810 personal property tax lists (the same year his proposed brother Thomas Compton appears). David lived on Thompson Creek just outside of present day Honaker, Virginia until his death in 1865. His nearest neighbors on Thompson Creek were Jeremiah and Thomas Compton.
In the West Virginia State Archives is a collection of letters that David Compton sent to his son Basil who moved Roane County in 1847. These provide an excellent view into the day to day life of this Compton family and pre Civil War Russell County. Also in this collection is a letter dated 1848 sent to Basil from Thomas Compton (1788 – 1855) in that Thomas refers to Basil as nephew, solidifying the fact Thomas was a brother to David. To see a complete transcription of this collection please click here.
Researchers also learn about David Compton through his testimony in the Revolutionary War Widows Pension his mother, Frances Herndon Compton, filed in Russell County in 1847. The will of David Compton was never recorded in Russell County records but was recently located in a chancery case at the Library of Virginia involving the grandchildren of David. This will allowed researchers to positively identify all the children of David and Polly Compton.