Page:Encyclopedia of Virginia Biography volume 2.djvu/416

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363
PROMINENT PERSONS

ber 5, 1855), and a grandson, Dr. Charles Parke Goodall, frequently represented Hanover county in the Virginia assembly.

Barron, James, born at Old Point Comfort, Elizabeth City county, Virginia, in October, 1740. son of Captain Samuel Barron, who then was commander of Fort George, at that place. Captain Barron removed to Mill Creek. Left fatherless in 1750, the son, then ten years old, was taken in charge by Col. Hunter, his father's friend, then "navy agent victualler," who sent him to sea under Captain Barrington, trading in a ship between London and the James river. In due time young Barron was given command of a small vessel belonging to Col. Hunter, and soon after was made master of a regular ship. American sailors were then habitually derided and treated with arrogance by the British naval officers whom they frequently met at sea, and Captain Barron, in 1774, resenting such treatment, sailed his ship outside Cape Henry, then turned her over to his first mate, to deliver to her owners in England, and returned home. He soon received letters offering him command of a fine ship in the British transport service, but his patriotism would not allow of his acceptance. He became captain of a company of minute men which he headed in skirmishes with the British, at the Edward Cooper place on James river, and at Hampton. Virginia was now providing a navy of her own and soon had in service some fifty vessels of various descriptions, and Captain Barron cruised with small squadrons, harrassing British commerce. On July 3, 1780, he was given command of the state navy, with the rank of Commodore, also serving at times as a member of the board of war of the young nation. After peace was restored in 1783, he was continued in command of the only two vessels retained in service for the protection of the revenue, and he was so occupied until his death, in 1787. He was father of Commodore James Barron (q. v.).

Ruffin, Edmund, born January 2, 1744-45, son of Edmund Ruffin by his first marriage with Mrs. Edmunds, nee Simmons. He was fourth in descent from William Ruffin, who was seated in Isle of Wight county, Virginia, in 1666, and died in 1693. He was a member of the house of delegates, 1777-84-86-87; of the convention of 1788; county lieutenant in 1789; sheriff in 1797. He married Jane, daughter of Sir William Skipwith, baronet, of "Prestwould," Mecklenburg county. He was grandfather of Edmund Ruffin, the distinguished agriculturist (q. v.). He died in 1807.

Strother, French, son of James Strother and Margaret French, his wife, was a vestryman and church warden of St. Mark's parish, Culpeper county, Virginia. He was a member of the convention of 1788. He represented his county in the general assembly for nearly thirty years; was a member of the convention of 1776 and of that of 1788 and voted against the proposed Federal Constitution; in 1799 he voted for the resolutions against the alien and sedition laws. He was solicited to oppose James Madison for congress, but James Monroe became the candidate and was defeated. He married Lucy, daughter of Robert Coleman.

King, Miles, son of Charles King and Elizabeth Tabb, his wife, was born in Elizabeth City county, November 2, 1747. He