- Thomas M. Owen's Revolutionary Soldiers in Alabama:
COLLIER, JAMES. Died at his residence near the village, on Monday the 20th instant, after a severe illness of two weeks, Mr. James Collier, in the 77th year of his age. Mr. Collier was a native of Virginia, and at an early period of his life entered the Revolutionary Army. Through the whole of that arduous and protracted struggle for liberty, he manifested the most untiring zeal and unceasing devotion in the cause of his country. He was no less distinguished for his patriotism, than for high-toned honor and those bland and social virtues which endeared him to a large circle of relations and friends.
Overwhelming as is this melancholy bereavement to his worthy family, in which he shone as a most affectionate husband and father, and benevolent master, there is still for them great consolation in knowing that he developed strong hopes of future bliss, that flourish above the tomb, immortal and unfading. Many of his latest moments were spent in prayer; and he maintained throughout this trying interval that propriety which belonged to the character of a man of sense, and that elevated dependence upon a higher power which became a Christian.
Such were, as we have been enabled to sketch them, the life and death of our deceased friend; we see pictured in them the employments of a man bent earnestly and steadily upon the faithful discharge of the duties which pertained to the situation allotted to him by his Creator. No meritorious artifice to attract the popular applause, no disingenuous maneuvering, were perceptible in his character. These qualities rendered him firm and steady in his friendships. His loss will long be felt by the circle of relations whom he has left behind him; and his memory, as a soldier and a man, will be long and affectionately cherished by all to whom he was known.
How often, at the peaceful fireside of this revolutionary soldier, have we heard the tale of the deeds of other years! Even now, can we see, in fancy's eye, the grey-haired sire, traveling with increased emotion through the memorable battles of Gilford, Brandywine, Savannah and Eutaw Springs. His aged and failing eyes glisten again with the fire of youth! At the recollection of their resplendent glories, he springs forward from the venerable chair of age, and in the warmth of emotion, almost forgets, for the time, the lapse of years! But he is gone to the cold and silent tomb, moldering into dust, and mingling again with his mother earth. No more shall his spirit rejoice in the cannon's roar, or the music of the drum. Triana, Madison Co., Ala. Aug. 18, 1832.?Southern Advocate, Huntsville, Sept. 8, 1832.
Mrs. P. H. Mell has collected some additional details, and her sketch is given in full, although it contains some repetitions:
"James Collier a Revolutionary soldier, is buried on his plantation near Triana, Madison County, Alabama, about twenty miles from Huntsville.
"His wife is buried beside him and their monuments, with inscriptions, are now standing in a full state of preservation in the old family burying ground. The inscriptions are as follows:
" 'To the memory of
who was born in Lunenburg Co. Va., Oct. 13th,
A. D. 1757, and died the 20th of August, A. D. 1832.
"And though after my skin worms destroy this body,
yet in my flesh shall I see God: whom I shall see for
myself and my eyes shall behold and not another."
To the memory of
of Charlotte Co., Va., wife of James Collier, who was born the 13th of Feb., A. D. 1763, and died the 23rd of Feb., A. D. 1828.
"All flesh is grass, and all the goodliness thereof is as a flower of the field, for the wind passeth over it and it is gone and the place thereof shall know it no more."
"James Collier was the son of Cornelius Collier and Elizabeth Wyatt, of Lunenburg County, Va. He was descended from Charles Collier, of King and Queen County, Va., on his father's side, and his mother was nearly related to Sir Francis Wyatt, Colonial Governor of Virginia. It was the old flax wheel of his (James Collier's) cousin, Mary Collier, the ancestor of the late Prof. G. Brown Goode, which suggested insignia of the Daughters of the American Revolution. James Collier was wounded at the battle of Eutaw Springs by a sabre cut across his cheek, in a hand-to-hand encounter with a British soldier. He killed the soldier and carried the scar on his face to his grave. His brother, Wyatt Collier, was killed in the same battle when only a boy.
"James Collier married Elizabeth Bouldin, July 3, 1788, daughter of James Bouldin and Sally Watkins, of Charlotte County, Va. He was a large land owner in Lunenburg County and resided there until 1802, when he, with his little family, followed his father and other relatives to Abbeville District, South Carolina. He was a large planter in that State until 1818, when he followed his sons to the territory of Alabama, his older sons having settled in that part of the Mississippi territory, now Alabama, in 1812. He settled on a large plantation in Madison County, where he lived and died.
"His wife, Elizabeth Bouldin, was the daughter of James Bouldin, who was the oldest son of Colonel Thomas Bouldin of Colonial fame, who settled in Lunenburg (now Charlotte) County, Virginia, in l 744, coming from Pennsylvania. His wife was Nancy Clark, niece of Captain Richard Wood of the English navy. The family of Bouldins are noted for their intellect and their love for the legal profession. Virginia boasts there has never been a generation without a Judge, even to the present day. This couple left a large family of sons, but there were only four grandsons among, the grandchildren. Governor Henry Watkins Collier was a son of James Collier. He was closely connected with the politics of Alabama from 1822 until his death in 1855.
"The ancestry of James Collier is as follows:
(1) Charles Collier of King and Queen County, Virginia. One of his children,-
(2) John Collier, Sr., (1680-1735), who was married three times, by his third wife, Nancy Eyres, had issue, among others:
(3) Cornelius Collier, born 1725, married Elizabeth Wyatt in Gloucester County, Va., about 1750, lived in Lunenburg County, Va., was a soldier in the Revolution and moved to Abbeville District, South Carolina in 1788; he had four sons and one of them was?
(4) James Collier, the subject of this sketch. The facts of this article were furnished by his great-granddaughter Miss Elizabeth R. Benagh. James Collier is mentioned in the Memorial Record of Alabama, vol. ii p. 415."? Transactions of the Alabama Historical Society, Vol. iv, pp. 536-7.
Moved to South Carolina 1802 then to Alabama 1818 per Virgina Cousins by Goode.