"Colonel" William Tyree

Born November 22, 1807 in Lewisburg, Virginia
Died July 29, 1883 in Ansted, West Virginia

Biographical notes by Elinor F. Tyree

William Tyree, born 11/22/1807 in the Long Ordinary in Lewisburg, as 5 year old enrolled in Dr. John McElhanney's new Lewisburg Academy, in the years 1822-1823 William and Hudson M. Dickinson attended Rev. Remley's Academy in Lewisburg, traveling to and from together. In 8/11/1836 Dr. McElhanney married William to Rebecca McClung, daughter of Joseph McClung and sister to Margaret McClung who married William's brother Francis; they had four children before Rebecca died 4/1/1842 (aged 24 years 11 months and was buried in graveyard of Old Stone House with infant son George Wm. Tyree, who died 6/16/1842). McElhanney married William for second time 2/13/1844 to Sarah Campbell McClung (born 2/14/1815, died 1888) cousin to deceased Rebecca and daughter of Andrew McClung and Eva L. Christensen; they had one son. William was Sheriff of Fayette from 1831 to 1846; he settled in Mountain Cove (now Ansted, West Virginia) circa 1832 and bought (with brother Francis' help on father's death) Half Way House (inn) from George Hunter; William enlarged the inn and it became known as the Tyree Tavern. As inn-keeper William became Justice of the Peace, sometimes Post Master and head of the County Militia (with title of Col.); he also served his County in the Virginia Legislature from 1855 to 1856. When the clash of the Civil War split the area, the Tyree's became Confederates; and William raised a volunteer company, Company C. of the 22nd Regiment of the Virginia Infantry; as instigator he became Captain. Typhoid fever forced him to release his command in 1862; Dr. Henry Dickinson succeeded him as Captain; William's two adult sons remained with the group until the close of the War. William's greatest trial was probably when a Federal Company of Dragoons took over his tavern and made it their headquarters, forcing William and his family to move behind Confederate lines. The discovery of coal in his area made William a wealthy man "in English stocks"; the failure of the English Company left him and his property unsettled. He served as High Sheriff of Fayette from 1877 to 1881. At his death 7/29/1883 (from cancer of the tongue) at the home of his Dr. son, Woodson Andrew Tyree, he willed his graveyard to the community, newly named Ansted. He was a member of the Methodist Church.



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