Major Joseph Graham, Charlotte
Violet Alexander, Charlotte, Designer
Gault & Son, Baltimore, Maryland, Builder
The marker for Joseph Graham is a 6-foot high bolder of Winnsboro granite with a bronze plaque attached. The plaque is shield shaped with a round on flat top. In relief above the inscription is tree branch holding a hornet’s nest. Beneath the inscription is the spinning wheel insignia of the Daughters of the American Revolution above a pair of crossed sabers. Graham was a captain at the time of the events described on the plaque. Later in the war he attained the rank of Major. The plaque is dated 1916 but the marker was placed and dedicated in 1918.
Images (provided by Linda Dalton, Historic Sugaw Creek Academy & Burying Grounds, Sugaw Creek Presbyterian Church): Plaque
MAJOR JOSEPH GRAHAM / PATRIOT, SOLDIER, STATESMAN / RECEIVED NINE WOUNDS IN / BATTLE OF CHARLOTTE / WAS LEFT FOR DEAD ON / SUGAW CREEK ROAD / SEPTEMBER 26, 1780 / ERECTED BY / THE MECKLENBURG DECLARATION / OF INDEPENDENCE CHAPTER / DAUGHTERS OF THE / AMERICAN REVOLUTION / 1916
Sugaw Creek Presbyterian Church
May 20, 1918
35.258540 , -80.794660 View in Geobrowse
David A. Norris and Daniel W. Barefoot. 2006. "Charlotte, Battle of," NCpedia.org (accessed June 20, 2014) Link
The Mecklenburg Historical Association, http://www.meckdec.org/, (accessed January 31, 2017) Link
Williams, Max R. 1986. “Graham, Joseph,” NCPedia.org, (accessed January 31, 2017) Link
“D.A.R. Chapter Unveils Marker,” The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, NC), May 18, 1918
“Monument to General Graham,” The Charlotte News (Charlotte, NC), May 21, 1918
Winnsboro granite, bronze
Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution
Mrs. W.L. Moore regent of the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution was mistress of ceremonies. Major William A. Graham, the North Carolina Commissioner of Agriculture, a member of the same family as Joseph Graham was the featured speaker and gave a talk on patriotism. Misses Sarah and Bessie Hall, lineal descendants of Graham unveiled the plaque. Those in attendance sang “America” to close the program.
Lord Cornwallis came to Charlotte in the fall of 1780 on his way to try and destroy the Continental Army. He stayed only sixteen days due to the intensity of local partisan actions against his troops. Because of this he later referred to Charlotte as “A Hornet’s Nest of Rebellion” giving rise to Charlotte being called the Hornet’s Nest City today. Graham was wounded during rear guard fighting as patriot militia forces withdrew in defeat from the Battle of Charlotte.
Graham was a member of the first board of trustees of the University of North Carolina. During the war of 1812 he was appointed a brigadier general of North Carolina and South Carolina militia.
The marker is located across Sugar Creek Road from Sugaw Creek Presbyterian Church (101 West Sugar Creek Rd, Charlotte, NC 28213).
The memorial marker stands under a line of mature trees in front of an iron fence near the entrance into the church cemetery.