Captain Jacob Prickett was born in Wilmington, Delaware, in the year of 1722. He is said to have been 5’10,” and to have weighed about 180 pounds. Jacob had “stiff” black hair, and black eyes, and it is noted that he was “fierce in the defense of others, but soft hearted and gentle with children.”
On May 11, 1745, Jacob wed Dorothy Springer. Dorothy was born in Evesham, Burlington County, New Jersey. Jacob’s father filed a five-hundred dollar marriage bond for Jacob and Dorothy to be wed.
In 1747, on either the 28th or the 29th of April, Jacob Prickett, David Morgan, Nathaniel Springer, John Snodgrass, and Pharoah Ryley left for the C’Capon River to wait for news from Lawrence Washington Esq., (Lawrence was the brother of George Washington). These men were meeting Lawrence to be informed about terms for an expedition to the Cheat River, which they were to scout lands for Lawrence Washington and Co. Nathaniel said that this group of men also explored the Tygart River, and Buckhannon River. They returned to their homes in August of 1747, where they then gave Lawrence Washington maps and other papers that they had made during the expedition.
In the year 1758, Jacob served under General George Washington in Braddock’s campaign against the Indians of the Monongahela River Region.
In 1759, Jacob worked an Indian trading post, at the mouth of Prickett’s Creek. There were many large Indian villages nearby this post. The Algonquin, Appalachain, and Iroquois Indians were Indian groups that he most likely traded with, however, there were many other Indian groups in the area at that time, such as the Delaware, Shawnee, Mohawk, and Senecas.
In the year 1763, King George III claimed that all lands west of the Allegheny Mountains were Indian Lands, and were not to be settled. This statement was made because of Delaware and Iroquis complaints about settlers in their lands. This is the reason why Jacob waits to claim until 1772. Also in 1772, Samuel Hanaway, a surveyor, surveyed three-hundred tweny-four acres of land on Prickett’s Creek for Jacob.
In 1774, Prickett’s Fort was built for protection from hostile Indians. It is known that Jacob’s brothers, Josiah and Isaiah, along with other settlers in the area, helped erect the fort. It is said that about eighty families were living in the fort from fear of the Indians. There were other forts and settlements around the area also, such as those at Morgantown, and Clarksburg. There were sixteen cabins located in the fort, and at first, they had only dirt floors, but some were later improved with puncheons. The cabins were seperated from each other by storage bins. The walls of the fort were ten feet high, and the bastions were larger then the cabins. There were four bastions, each eight feet higher then the walls of the fort, in which there was one at each corner, and they were projected about two feet over the fort walls. The overhanging portions had slatted floors, so attacking enemies could be fired upon, directly downward. Jacob later constructed a mill near the fort, and it is assumed that it was the first mill in the area.
There was a story told about Jacob by David Morgan, about a captured Indian brave. The story claimed that David and Jacob came upon the Indian, but were out of ammunition, so Jacob loaded his weapon with a bean. Jacob shot the Indian in the bottom, and the Indian began to “dance around,” screaming in pain. As the Indian was doing this action, Jacob hit the brave with his fist, and knocked him out. The two men then tied him up and took him to Fort Rogers, where he was later returned for the Ramsey Boy, who had been living with Indians for a year.
Jacob and David Morgan served together in the American Revolution. They both served at George Washington’s, Fort Necessity, and they were both under General Edward Braddock at the march on Fort Duquesne. Sometime during Jacob’s life, he was a spy for the Virginia Militia, and later became Captain of the Monongalia County, Virginia troops in the Revolutionary War.
1-Jacob Prickett Log Cabin 1781
2-Findagrave page for Jacob Prickett
Capt. Jacob Prickett’s sister, Ann Prickett (1718-1760) had a grandaughter, Elizabeth Springer (1800-1900), who married Richard Nuzum (1792-1876), whose Great-grandson William Jennings Nuzum (1896-1987) was Janine’s grandfather.