Burgess Ball

Burgess Ball

US Revolutionary War · US Army

Aide-de-camp and cousin to General George Washington. Born at "Bewdley" in Lancaster, Virginia to Jeduthun and Elizabeth Burgess Ball.

US Revolutionary War (1775 - 1783)


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Conflict Period

US Revolutionary War

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Fifth and Ninth Regiment

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Served For

United States of America

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Stories about Burgess Ball

Biography of Burgess Ball

    Colonel Burgess Ball was born on July 28, 1749, in Lancaster, Virginia, the only child of Jeduthun Ball and Elizabeth Burgess. He married Mary CHICHESTER and they had two children together between 1772 and 1773. After her death, he then married Frances Ann Thornton Washington (niece of George Washington) and they had seven children together between 1783 and 1799. He died on March 7, 1800, in Loudoun, Virginia, at the age of 50, and was buried near Leesburg, Virginia. At the outbreak of the American Revolution, Burgess Ball joined the Continental Army and served as an officer on the staff of his first cousin, General George Washington, where he rose to the rank of Captain. Later in the war, Ball donated his own money to raise and equip a Virginia regiment to fight the British Army. He rose to the position of Lt. Colonel in that regiment. After the war, Colonel Ball was a frequent visitor to Mount Vernon and enjoyed the hospitality of George and Martha Washington. Many of his letters to his cousin survive to this day. The Revolutionary War took a serious toll on Ball's health and finances. Perhaps inspired by the bountiful table at Mount Vernon, he threw extravagant parties at his home Traveler's Rest in Spotsylvannia County, which depleted his personal finances. Almost completely broke, in 1795 with part of his pension, he purchased 247 acres of land in what was then the wilderness of Loudoun County and built a rustic lodge, which he called Springwood. He added to this land over the course of the next five years, and the land became one of the most fertile estates in the area. Colonel Burgess Ball died in 1800 and was mistakenly buried outside what was to be the Ball Cemetery during a snowstorm. Later his body was found and reinterred in what is now the Ball Family Cemetery near Leesburg, Virginia.

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