Biographies from Goodspeed 3

Anderson County Tennessee

Biographies from Goodspeed


D R Coward, a prominent young lawyer of Clinton, was born in Clinton, Mar 13, 1864, the son of Dr T J and O (Young) Coward. Dr. Coward is the son of Isaac Coward, a native of Tennessee, whose ancestors were of English birth, and came to America, landing at Charleston, SC and working his way across the mountains of Tennessee. He began the practice of medicine in Anderson County, at an early date, and continued with slight intermission, until abut 1874, when he retired from active practice. He is now a resident of Clinton, and is the oldest and best known physician in the county, having a reputation second to none in this section of the county. During the gold fever, he went to California where he remained for awhile, and then returned by way of the Isthmus. The mother was born in Anderson County in 1833 and is the daughter of Samuel C Young and wife (nee Hall) both natives of Tennessee, of Scotch-Irish origin, and among the oldest families of the county. Our subject was reared and partly educated at Clinton, and spent three years in the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. He then began the study of law with Messrs. Young and Sawyer of Clinton and was admitted to the bar in Mar 1886, and at once began practice. Upon the retirement of Judge D K Young from the circuit bench, he formed with that gentleman their present co-partnership. In Nov, 1885, he married Minnie Jarnagin, who was born at Knoxville, Tenn., in 1864, and is the daughter of Richard and Ada (Sneed) Jarnagin. Her grandfather, Major John Jarnagin, was one of the most prominent citizens of Anderson County. Thomas J is their only child, born August 1, 1886.

William Cross is one of the most prominent and infuential citizens of Anderson Co., Tn., and the largest farmer and stock raiser of the Ninth Civil District of that county. He was born in the same county Mar 3, 1812, the son of Briton and Mary (Parks) Cross. The father was a native of Va., born Apr 22, 1776, and early became a pioneer of Sullivan Co., Tenn., where he first settled. He subsequently removed to Anderson County, where he was an extensive farmer. He died in 1826, after a long and useful life. The mother was born in Greene Co., Tenn., Apr 15, 1778. Our subject was reared on the farm, and acquired a limited education at the old field schools of his neighborhood. The advantages were meager, but his great natural ability supplied these defects so that he was fitted for his prominent career. The farm was divided upon the death of his father and he began for himself as a farmer and stock raiser. He was elected in 1887 as county clerk, which office he held for eight years, filling the office with credit to himself and the county. In 1848 he represented Anderson and Campbell counties in the Legislature, and in 1875, was elected to represent Anderson and Knox counties, serving in both with distinction. He has also served several years as justice. His official career has been characterized throughout by ability, justice and honor, and no man in the county enjoys a better repuation for honesty, integrity, and enterprise than he, or stands higher in the esteem of his neighbors. He was married in 1836 to Jane Black, who was born in 1818, the daughter of Joseph and Catherine Black. Their seven children are

  • Mary C.
  • John H.
  • Joseph B.
  • George W.
  • James F.
  • S. L.
  • and Samuel A (deceased).

The wife died Apr 2, 1885. She was an excellent woman, a kind mother and a devoted wife and was a member of the Presbyterian Church.

Elijah Cross. This farmer was born in Sullivan Co., Tn, Dec 24, 1823. David and Polly (Himes) Cross, his parents, were natives of the state, the one of English-German, and the other of pure German ablood. The country schools and the farm nurtured our subject in his youth, and although he has carpentered, bored for and manufactured salt, and boated, handling coal, iron, bacon and flour on flatboats, he has always given his chief attention to the plow and fork. Ellen A Kington, of Morgan County, became his wife July 8, 1855, and the twin sons born to them are now dead, and with their mother, who died in 1856. In 1872, he married Mrs. Sarah A Smith (nee Reed), and Flora T and Laura are their daughters, who are striving to educate themselves. A little clothing and $6.50 was the stock with which our subject began life, but that stock has reached large and comely proportions. He is a Baptist, and a respected man. He is a quiet Democrat who argues with the ballot. On Thursday, Feb 13, 1856, his wife was placed in her grave, leaving an infant babe, and but a few days later his home was ransacked and burned, leaving him pocket money only, with which to support his child. Such is fate!


Capt Charles W Cross was born in the house in which he now lives, three miles southwest from Clinton, July 23, 1845, and is the son of John Cross, who was born in the above county Sept 15, 1803, and died June 5, 1851. He was a son of Britton Cross, a native of Va, who imigrated to Sullivan County, Tenn., at a very early date, and from that county removed to Anderson County. He was married Jan 25, 1818, to Polly Parks. Both father and mother and son were farmers. John, the father, was a justice of the peace for a number of years. The mother was also born in Anderson County, May 11, 1804, was named Mary, and was the daughter of Charles Shinliver, a native of Germany, who immagrated to America and settled in Pa and from that state came to Tennessee, and settled in Powell’s Valley in Anderson Co, at a very early date. She died 9 Sep 1872. She was a member of the Baptist church. Our subject was reared on the farm, and attended the Clinton school. He enlisted in the Federal Army in the fall of 1863, joined Co F Seventh Tn Regiment of Mounted Infantry, which company he raised, and was elected captain. He served all through the war, participating in the many engagements of the regiment, and was mustered out July 27, 1865, at Nashville. After the war, he returned home and engaged in farming, and has continued at the same up to the present. He was elected register of Anderson County in 1868, and served four years, and has also served a similar number of years as justice of the peace and member of the county court. He was married Nov 6, 1870, to Mollie Worthington, who was born June 20, 1851, and is the daughter of Samuel and Catherine (Black) Worthington, both natives of Anderson County. To this union seven children have been born, as follows:

  • Ella E. born Sep 7, 1871
  • John M., born 8 Jan 1873
  • Samuel W., born 28 Nov 1877, died 23 June 1882
  • Mary C, born 10 Aug 1874, died 6 July 1875
  • N J , born 1 Dec 1870
  • Charles F, born 3 Sep 1883
  • Kemmie C., born 25 Sep 1885, died 28 Sep 1886.

Our subject is a member of Moore Post, G A R , and he and his wife are members of Methodist Church South.

J F Cross is a native of Anderson County, and was born in the Ninth Civil District, on Clinch River, 4 Mar 1851, the son of William and Jane (Black) Cross. The father was born in Anderson Co., Tn., and was one of its leading citizens. The mother, also a native of this county, died in 1885. Our subject attended Tennessee University at Knoxville, and also the school at Salem, Franklin County. He was reared on the farm, and has continued that life up to the present with decided success. He now owns and cultivates a farm of 300 acres on Clinch River, in the Eighth District. In 1875, he married Mary McCallum, of Knoxville, was born in 1852, the daughter of Daniel McCallum, of that city. Their children are

  • Clifton, born 24 Sep 1876
  • Clarence, born 21 July 1878
  • Mary, born 30 Sep 1879 (deceased 1 Sep 1881)
  • McCallum, born 7 July 1881 (deceased Oct 1882)
  • Lola, born 14 Apr 1883,
  • and Dixie, born 12 Apr 1886.

The mother is a member of the Baptist Church.

Hon. William Cullom was born in Ky., 4 June 1810, and is the son of William and Elizabeth (Northcroft) Cullom. The father was a native of Maryland, and immigrated to Ky at an early day. He was a farmer, and died in 1838; the mother was also born in Maryland and died during the late war. Our subject was reared near Monticello, Ky., and acquired his early education in the schools of that place. During the holidays of 1830 he removed to Tn, and settled in Overton Co., where he read law with an elder brother. He next attended the law department of the Transylvania University at Lexington, Ky., for two years, and was then admitted to the bar, on 4 June 1834, being licensed by Judges Caruthers and Reese. He located at Gainesboro, Jackson Co., where he practiced law until 1839, and then removed to Middle Tenn. His success at the bar of Carthage was unusual and rapid. He was elected attorney general by the Legislature of 1834 – 35, and held the office for six years. In 1843, he was elected State senator, and re-elected in 1845. He was elected as a Whig in 1851 to represent the Nashville District in Congress, and re-elected in 1853, and defeated two years later by only seventy-two votes out of a poll of 15,000. Upon his defeat he was solicited by members of Congress to make the race for clerk of the House of Representatives and consenting was elected and served two years. Gov Brown next appointed him attorney general for the Fourth Judicial Circuit of Tn, and at the following regular election was chosen as such by the people. After serving three years of his term he resigned; and later on was appointed by Gov Porter, judge of the circuit. The same year he was nominated for Congress, leading a forlorn hope; he was of course defeated, but received about 3,000 more votes than had ever been cast for a candidate of his party for that district. He removed to Clinton where he resided for a while, and then removed He removed to Clinton whre he resided for a while, and then removed one mile distant from that town, where quietly following agricultural pursiuts. He was a presidential elector on the Taylor ticket, and is the only surviving one of the Tennessee electors. He was married in 1867 to Mary Griffin, and to them eight children have been born.

Goodspeed’s pages 1108 – 1110

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