380 persons collected in North Carolina in 1779 to found what is now known as Nashville; but only 134 survived to the end of the year. None of the deaths were by natural means. Six months later only seventy were left alive. The less hardy of the group clearing forests and draining swamps succumbed to fever and ague. Stout-hearted pioneers made their way down Wilderness Road into the North Carolina mountains determined to create homesteads in the New World. They were beset with hardship and Indian warfare. It was a common practice to build a fort and attempt to protect nearby settlements from the tomahawk. Large families wer e the norm because children were needed as laborers to help tame the wilderness terrain.
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