The Original Fort Vause

Fort Vause was built by Ephram Vause on the Upper South Fork of the Roanoke River along the Great Wagon Road West near present day Shawsville, Virgina. The fort was built around the Vause home prior to August 1755, after word of raids by French & Indians reached the area. There was an attack on the fort on August 12th, 1755. Several people were taken captive, others killed. In the Fall & Winter of 1755 Vause began to more strongly fortify the defenses.

On June 25th, 1756 Fort Vause was attacked again. The attacker this time was Captain Picot de Belestre and a force of French-Canadians and allied Indians. The fort surrendered later that evening. There were 2 English dead, 5 wounded and 12 men and 13 women were taken prisoner. Captain de Belestre listed his losses as 1 Canadian, 1 Indian killed,  1 Officer and 4 Indians wounded. Later one of the Fort Vause captives was burnt to death and the fort was burnt as well. Ephram Vause was not at the fort during the attack but several of his family members were among the prisoners.

Vause later returned to rebuild the fort. The exact location of Fort Vause #2 is still a disputed mystery.

There is a Historical Marker commemorating Fort Vause in Shawsville, Virginia.