Well, it’s not a blood tie; it’s a gun tie. For as long as I’ve studied the Kerley family, I’ve heard bits and pieces about “someone” knowing Daniel Boone once upon a time. I’ve never taken the time to try to match locations, etc. to verify the story. However, Michael Kerley brought me a news article from The Galveston Daily News (3-27-1904) that has me wondering once again.
W.P. (William Pierce) Kerley of Valdasta, Texas has in his possession an interesting relic which came to him from Daniel Boone through his grandfather. It is an old style brass rifle charger which the famous hunter and Indian fighter used.
He gave it to his friend and neighbor, William B. Swinney, who, as a blacksmith, often shod the horses of Gen. Andrew Jackson.* In 1830, Swinney came to Texas, where he was killed. His widow, daughter (mother of Mr. Kerley), and two sons waled back to their old home in Putnam County, Tenn. This old brass rifle charger was taken back with them on this long journey.
At the death of Mrs. Swinney, it passed to her daughter, fromwhom it came into the possession of her son, Mr. Kerley. He prizes it highly.
And so it looks like the Kerley family didn’t actually know Boone; they did, however, end up with his rifle, and there is something to be said for that!
*This is interesting because the Kerley family ties into the Rieff family through marriage, and possibly in other ways since the families seem to end up in the same places. The Rieff brothers did the construction of Jackson’s Hermitage and fought with him in the Battle of Horseshoe Bend, near Dadeville Alabama.