Clinch, Duncan Lamont, 1787-1849

Alternative names
Birth 1787-04-06
Death 1849-10-28

Biographical notes:

Soldier, planter, and U.S. congressman, of Georgia.

From the description of Duncan Lamont Clinch papers, 1834-1859. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 144796486

United States Military General.

Duncan Clinch was born in North Carolina on April 6, 1787. He served in the War of 1812 in the South, led the expedition that destroyed the Negro Fort on the Apalachicola, and, with the rank of general, commanded at the Battle of Withlacoochee, December 31, 1835, during the Second Seminole War. He resigned his commission on April 26, 1836, amidst criticism over his actions in the latter battle, and retired to his home in Camden County, Georgia. He died in 1849.

From the description of General Duncan Lamont Clinch Family Papers, 1804-1904. (University of Florida). WorldCat record id: 48886522

Duncan Lamont Clinch was born in 1787 in North Carolina to a middle class family. He was orphaned in youth and started life with an inheritance of twelve hundred dollars. In 1808 Congressman Thomas Blount selected Clinch as one of two individuals to receive commissions as first lieutenants in the U.S. Army. During the War of 1812 he was stationed in Louisiana and Plattsburg, N.Y. In July of 1816 he led the expedition that destroyed the "Negro Fort" on the Apalachicola River. Later he was brevetted to the rank of Brigadier General and led over seven hundred men against the Seminole Indians at the Battle of the Withlacoochee during the Second Seminole War. On April 26, 1836 General Clinch tendered his resignation to President Andrew Jackson, who tried to get him to reconsider; however, Clinch refused and on September 21, 1836 retired from his military career.

During his lifetime Clinch married three times. His first wife was Eliza Bayard McIntosh of the wealthy McIntosh family of Camden County, Georgia. This marriage produced eight children, five boys and three girls. Eliza died fairly soon after the eighth child was born and Clinch married his second wife, Elizabeth Bayard Houstoun, who after two still births died as well. Clinch's third wife, Sofia Gibbs, outlived Clinch by over fifty years. After his retirement from the service Clinch was responsible for his eight children and the Refuge plantation, on the Satilla River, Georgia, which he had inherited from his first wife's father, John Houstoun McIntosh. Clinch also became involved in politics and in 1843 was elected to replace Congressman John Millen who had died in office. After finishing that term Clinch did not enter politics again until 1847 when he was nominated as a gubernatorial candidate for Georgia but subsequently lost the election.

Clinch died on November 27, 1849 in Macon, Georgia. He had amassed an estate valued at two million dollars. The estate included the Refuge plantation with five thousand acres, a summer mansion in Clarksville, Georgia, two hundred and ten slaves, and over twenty-one thousand acres of land in Florida.

Source: Patrick, Rembert Wallace, Aristocrat in Uniform, Gainesville: University of Florida Press, 1963.

From the guide to the General Duncan Lamont Clinch Family Papers, 1804-1904, (Special and Area Studies Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida)


Loading Relationships


Ark ID:


  • Plantations
  • Fortification
  • African Americans
  • Indians of North America--Wars
  • Plantations--Georgia
  • Seminole War, 2nd, 1835-1842
  • Slavery


  • Plantation owners
  • Representatives, U.S. Congress--Georgia
  • Soldiers


  • Florida (as recorded)
  • Georgia (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Georgia (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Fort King (Fla.) (as recorded)