My seventh great-grandfather is Zachariah Isbell (1722-1788) and is known as one of the "Immortal 13" or the "founders of Tennessee." Born in Virginia and died in Washington Co., Tennessee, Isbell served in the government of the Watauga Association. He along with other frontier settlers created this partially independent government, which provided a basis for what would be the state of Tennessee.
One historic paper states Virginia governor Lord Dunmore called the Watauga Association a "dangerous example of Americans forming a government distinct from and independent of his majesty's authority." While President Theodore Roosevelt labeled them the "first men of American birth to establish a free and independent community on the continent."
The Daughters of the American Revolution had a plaque placed in Elizabethton, TN in honor of the Watauga settlers and my ancestor, Zachariah Isbell is listed among them.