TNFlag TNFlag Lawrence County, Tennessee
Lawrence County, Tennessee Goodspeeds History

Taken from "Goodspeed’s History of Tennessee;"
Published in 1886

Goodspeed Biographries of Lawrence County Citizens

Lawrence County belongs to the natural divison known as the Highland Rim, the higher lands lying from the northeast to the southwest. From the general level there rises occasional bluffs 300 feet in height. The elevation above the sea level is about 70 0 or 800 feet. The general surface, however, is sufficiently level to admit of agricultural pursuits. The principal streams of the county are Shoal Creek, Factory Fork, Beeler Fork, Chisholm Creek, Knob Creek, Sugar Creek, Blue Water, Little and Big Buffa lo Rivers, and many other smaller streams. These streams have their source in the numerous large springs that burst from the hillsides and flow pure as crystal over beds of shale, limestone, chert ot pebbles. These streams abound in fine trout and other fish that furnish pastime for not a few Izaak Waltons. The streams furnish fine water power for machinery, such as sawmills, flouring mills and cotton and woolen factories. The Shoal Mills, two and a half miles from Lawrenceburg, are owned by Wm. Parke r, and have 1,068 spindles, 30 looms, and manufacture sheeting, drills, carpet-chain, etc. These mills have a 35-horse power turbine wheel, also a 25-horse power engine. The Crowson mills, on Crowson Fork of Shoal Creek, were built in 1856. The mills a re owned by W.H Skyes & Bro., and have 576 spindles. The machinery is moved by a 35-horse power turbine wheel. The Crescent Mills, on Simonton Fork of Shoal Creek, were built in 1852. These mills have 32 looms, 1,152 spindles and a 40-horse power wheel . The Hope Mills have a 35-horse power wheel and 768 spindles. The Eagle Mills of McCrea & Co. have 1,176 spindles, and a wheel of 40-horse power. The Laurel Hill Mills, on Bufalo river, have 1,570 spindles, 56 looms, the Marcella Falls Woolen Mills wer e built 1882 by I. B. Rains, J.M. Mays, G.T. Hughes, A.B. Rains and L.E. Frierson, with the above name.

Lawrence has some excellent farming lands, that produce fine corn, wheat, cotton, tobacco, and fruits. Only about eighteen per cent of the lands in the county is cleared. The principal wealth lies in the beds of iron ore and fine timber. The valuabl e timbers are the walnut, oak, ash and poplar, of which there are vast quantities.

The first settlements made in the county were on Big Buffalo River, near Pennington’s old mill site, near the crossing of that stream by ( Page # 749 ) the Columbia & Wayneboro Turnpike, in 1815. The settlers came chiefly from north Carolina. Amo ng them were Jacob Pennington and sons (Moses, Absalom, William, Isaac and David), Archibald Coulert, Joshua Ashmore, Drury Chambers, John Voorhees, David Matthews, James McMillan, George Kitchen, Phillip Chromister, Absalom Murphy, Daniel Pennington, Joh n and William Voss, Joe Reynolds, Aquila Brown, John Lockhart, Wm. Williams, Miles Parsons, Wm. Leahorn, Wm. Burlesson, John Bromley, C. Hutchinson, John Ray, Adam Chromister, Jesse Hutchinson, Daniel Simms, Daniel Smith, John Garrison, Geo. Isham, Wm. Lo ng, Joseph Teas, James Teas, James Horton, Thomas and James Christy, John McChish, Thomas Mitchell, the Fosters, Steels, Bryants, Duckworths, Hurleys, Williamses, Bennets, Garrets, Pollocks, Perkinses, Cunninghams, Kennedys, and McBrides. At Pennington&# 146;s the first watermill in the county was built in 1816 by Moses Pennington: a distillery was also built near the mill--the first in the county. The Primitive Baptists built the first church in 1817, near where Henryville was afterward built, of which church the Rev. John Hunter was the first minister. The first school was taught in the above church in 1817. The pioneers on Beeler Fork were John Beeler, M. Duncan, Robert Hayne, Josephus Irvine, Samuel Thomas and Thomas Paine. On Middle Fork were Ba iley Alford, Samuel McLean, William Thomas, John Welch, John Chambers, J.E. Edmiston, Warren Mason, David Crockett, Daniel Levi, Jacob and William Matthews, William and Nehemiah Reynolds, John, William and John (Jr.) McAnnally, Solomon, Wm., and Noble Luc as, Martin Prewett, Aaron Cheat, Moses Holliday, Stephen Holliday, Richard Cheat, George Lucas, Patterson Crockett, Abner and Gabriel Bumpass, Jacob Adair, John Poley, Ebenezer Thompson, James Joseph Halford, W.S. Dalton, John Shirley, Levi Blackard, Jame s Bradstreet, James Birgen, George Rodgers, W., Worten, Stephen Roland, John Smith, John Sullivan, John M. Hughes, Charles, James and Nathan Armstrong, William and O. N. Green, John Henson, John Talby, Samuel Akin and Green Depoint. On Shoal Creek and vi cinity were Harlan Paine, John Buchanan, George Lucas, Archibald Morrow, Green D. Priest, Samuel Armstrong, David McIntyre, Wm. Melton, A. McLaren, David Stewart, Jacob Blythe, David Atkison, Benjamin Smith, Beasley Ingraham, John Miller, James Brooks, Wi ley Brown, Robert Carr, Edward Denton, John Gest, Barney Gabill, Thomas Dollane, Henry Wellington, James and William Hearlson, Robert Hillhouse, John and Daniel McIntyre, Elisha and Elijah Milton, John Null, Andrew McLaren, Andrew Pickens, Spencer Pearce, William Smith, Nathan Spear, ( Page # 750 )Thomas Spencer, Horence Strawn, Wm. Simmons, Abraham Sizemore, Jacob Turnbow, Elijah Walker, Moses Williams, Wm. Jackson (Sr.), and William Jackson (Jr.). On Sugar Creek and vicinity there settled Jacob Brasher s, John Miller, John and William Brashers, George Brenn, Joseph Baldwin, and others, On Chism Fork of Shoal Creek were Wm. Tucker, Jesse Tucker and James Welch. On Knob Creek were Pollard Wisdom, Solomon Azbell, Thomas Ethridge, John Ethridge, and other s. In different parts of the county there were the Alexanders, Gaswells, Higgs, Phenixes, Lindseys, McConnells, Kilburns, Cunninghams, Stringhams, McClindens, Davises, Joneses, Grays, Tutnells, Alcorns, Hills, Haynes, Gambells, McCains, Sharps, McKinneys , Mitchells, Walkers, Whartons, Campbells, Fosters, Stricklands, Morgans, Oxfords, Fallses, Allsops, Poteets and Pennicuffs.

All the families had settled in the county previous to 1818. By actual enumerations in 1818 the enrollment shows a voting population of 458. This shows a very rapid immigration when it is considered the first permanent settlers came in 1815. The f irst settled mainly on the larger streams, which furnished fish for food, power to run mills, cottongins, and other machinery, but, also, in the absence of roads, they furnished outlets to other parts of the county. Jesse Helton built the first cotton-gi n in the county in 1817, on Middle fork. James Scott erected a mill on Shoal Creek in 1820. Many deer, wolves, bears, wildcats and turkeys were found in the county, and the food of the pioneer consisted largely of game. Among the most noted hunters of his day was the celebrated David Crockett, who was one of the juctices chosen for the county at its organization. He resigned his office on November 1, 1819, and soon became involed in numerous lawsuits for debt. At one time he owned nearly 400 acres of land in the county, but in 1822 he gave away what property he had left, by his “free will”: to Nancy Musgrave, and moved to Gibson Co., W. Tenn. From this section he was a representative and afterward congressman. About 1835, having been def eated for Congress, he left the State and went to Texas, where he assisted the Texans in their struggle for independence. He fell bravely fighting at the Alamo. The following persons received either military grants or occupants’ grants about 1820: James Scott, James Appleton, James Byter, Stephen Bushby, John Crosthwait, Andrew Fugate, John Garner, Thomas Holland, Daniel Williams, William Lucas, Martin Prewett, John Ray, W.E. Tipton, Enoch and Willaim Tucker, Thomas Welch and Widsom. In 1870 J.B. Juep, editor of Volksfreund, of Cincinnati, and president of the “German Catholic Homestead Association, “ purchased at one time 15,000 acres of land in this county, the ( Page # 751 )whole amounting to about 25,000 acres, and large numbers of t hose industrious and thrifty people found homes here, and thus added materially to the wealth of the county.

Lawrence County was established by an act of the General Assembly in 1817, but was not formally organized until the first Monday in May, 1818. The county was cut off from “the territory south of Maury and west of Giles,” and embraced a much larger area formerly than now. It has been reduced from time to time. The same act which ordered the new county. Also ordered that it should be called Lawrence, in honor, it is supposed, of Commodore Lawrence, of the Untied States Nany. The act futher provided for the laying out of the county seat. David Crockett, Henry Sharp, Maxmilian H. Buchanan, and John Beeler were selected to lay out the county and to select a county seat. Duncan McIntyre surveyed and marked the county boundaries, for which he was allowed the sum $35. The justices selected by the legislature were Henry Day, Mansil Crisp, John Hillhouse, Pollard Wisdom, Richard Hill, Thomas Welch, Willis Hammond, Daniel Beeler, Samuel D. Poteet, Henry Sharp, Phillip Chromister, Nathan McClendon , David Crockett, Robert Chaffin, Robert Newton, and Thomas Acher. The other officers appointed were Daniel Beeler, chairman; M.H. Buchanan, clerk; Luke Grimes, sheriff; Alexander Miller, register; George Gresham, ranger; Solomon P. Cunningham, coroner.< /P>

The first court was held at the house owned by Dr. Joseph Farmer, but occupied afterward by Josephus Irvine. In 1819 the court gave a order to Irvine “to build a temporary court house for the county on such lot of ground as he may think proper, ab out twenty-five feet square, and he wait the future generosity of the court for compensation for the same: to which the said Irvine agreed”. The reason for building a temporary court house was, that the county seat had not yet been established. Irvi ne was allowed $25 per year for his court house, but the seat having been established in 1819, orders were given for the election of a new court house in Lawrenceburg. The new building was of brick--the old one was of logs--and two-stories in height, but about the same dimensions otherwise as the old one. This building was ready for occupancy at the April term of 1821. No records of the cost or contract of this building is to be found. This building is a part of the present court house. On January 4, 1847, S.E. Rose, J. O. Tarkington, Wm. A. Edminston, Francis H Kennedy, Robert Brashers, W.T. Stewart and John McCracken were appointed a committiee to examine into the finances of the county, to ascertain the probable cost of a new court house and the f easibility of repairing the old house. It was decided to repair the old house by building (Page # 752 ) around it, and by increasing its height two feet. The contract was let to Wm. A. Edminston, Thomas D. Davenport and J.W. Tarkington for $2,350. On Ja nuary 4, 1850, and order was passed allowing the Free-masons and Odd Fellows to erect an additional story to the building at their own expense. This was done at a cost of $1,500. This building is still in use, but is considerably out of repair: however, it is under contrast for repairs.

Under the law for imprisonment for debt, the following prison bounds were establised in October 1820: “Beginning at the most northern part of Jenkin’s blacksmith shop; thence to the northern part of the Widow Irvine’s house; thence to th e most northern corner of the old school house near the jail; thence to the southeast corner of Col. Irvine’s plantation; thence, with the fence of the same, to the place of the beginning, to include all the plantation.” Alexander Miller was aw arded, on November 3, 1819, $277.50 for furnishing a temporary jail. This was repaid from time to time till 1839, when the sheriff entered his protest against the further use of the old jail. A new lot was purchased,and, on April 9, Wm. Chaffin, Wm. A. Edminston, P.G.Austin, L.M. Bently and C.B. Davis were appointed a committee to draw plans and specifications for a new jail and to let the building of the same to the lowest bidder. This was let October, 1859, to be completed by March 1860, at a cost of $,3,999, in three equal installments. The dungeons were ten feet square and built of hewn timber, having double wall, with the space between filled with rocks,etc. This jail was buried in 1863 by some conscript soldiers, who had been confined therein, but was not rebuilt til 1870. It was rebilt by a committee--C.B. Davis, P.A. Austin, S.A. Carroll, S.Bushby and G.O.White, at the total cost of $3,056.96. In 1871 an order was passed by the county court allowing Lawrenceburg the use of the upper cells f or city prisoners.

The first commissioners of the poor were Robert Hill, George Lucus and Robert Chaffin, who were appionted in 1820. In 1824 Mr. Lucas ,James Burns and Hardin Payne distributed $62 to the poor. Previous to the purchase of the poor farm in 1837, pauper s were cared for by private indiviuals; in fact they were farmed out to the lowest responsible bidder. In that year George Lucas, A.W. Bumpass, Wm. Davis, A. Hill and C.J. Hensen were ordered to select a site for a poor farm. A purchase of 200 acres of land was made, twenty-five acres of wild land and 175 acres of “occupant land” of the place where “Needham Tutnell now lives”. The cost of the whole was only $245, On the purchase of the above, which included a house, all paupers wer e ordered thither, and Mrs. C.C. Brown was appointed poorhouse keeper. This site was afterward (Page # 753 ) sold, and Lewis Miller and W.C. Craig were chosen to sell the same and tp purchase a new site. This was done in 1847, and a new farm purchased. The count now owns 196 acrea of land, and the poor are kept at a nominal expense to the county.

The first divisions into districts were only, viz.: Lawrenceburg and Pennington. In 1823 there were divisions by companies of Capts. Wharton, McCauley, Welch, Prewett, Segmore, Wisdom, Seahorn, and Wharton. In 1835, the last devisions were Capts., Ro berts, Lucas, Hunt, Green, Abel Hill, W. Hill, Wm. K. Hill, Price, Alton, McClintock, Keys, White, Warren, Tally, and Steen. Under the constitution of 1836 the county was divided into twelve civil districts. Beginning in the southwest corner of the county they were numbered First, Second, and Third to the East, and then Fourth, Fifth and sixth to the West, and so through the whole county. The most of those divisions have beeh changed somewhat, and the number increased to fifteen, so that they are no long er in regular order as they were at first. John Warren, Hugh C. McIntyre, Rob. Brashers and W. McCallister were appointed to make these divisions in 1836. The for elections in No. 1, was at Alex Stewart’s; No. 2, at Benjamin Powell’s; No. 3, A t Rob Brashers; No.4, at Thomas Frank’s; No. 5, at Jacob Bryant’s, No. 6; at Col. Hail’s; No. 7, at Wm. Monday’s; No. 8, at Lawrenceburg;, No. 9, at James Helton’s; No. 10, at Wm. Wasson’s; No. 11, at John Fisher’s; No. 12, at John Kennedy’s.

On April 7, 1879, the Columbia, Lawrenceburg and Florence Railroad Company filed a petition with the county court asking $50,000 to be given in aid of building said road. The road was to start at Columbia, Maury County, and pass through Mount Pleasan t, Lawrenceburg, and to the Alabama line. Said aid was to be voted in bonds to run thirty years at 6 per cent interest, $25,000 to be given if the road was compeleted to Lawrenceburg only, and the remaining $25,000 to be payable if the roas was completed through the county. The bonds were voted on May 13, 1879, and the road completed to Lawrenceburg in due time, and the remaining part south to Lawrenceburg has since been completed. The parties comprising the company were G.H Nixon, M.M. Powell, J.W. St ewart, Wm. Parkes, J.T. Ellis, and W.P. H. Garner, of Lawrence, and Ed. Hughes, and G.T. Hughes, of Maury County. The chief engineer’s estimate of the cost of the road though to two counties was $73, 358, the cost in Lawrenceburg $44,728. The Colum bia and Waynesboro Turnpike was completed through the county about 1847, the the same is not kept up.

The county court was organized at the house of Dr. Joseph Farmer, ( Page # 754) then occupied by Josephus Irvine. The court met on the first Monday in May 1818, and there were present the Worshipful Duncan McIntyre, Joseph Gest, James Forbes, John Hil lhouse, and Henson Day, justices. The promptly orgainzed by choosing Daniel Beeler, chairman, Maxmilian A. Buchanan, clerk, and Richard Farmer, sheriff, instead of Luke Grimes as appointed by the legislature. The first official acts were the approval of the bonds of the county offiers. The court next levied a county tax equal to the State tax for county purposes, and granted tavern license to Wm. McGaw and Wm. Strawn, “agreeably to the law to suppress gambling.” The first jury consisted of H enry Ross, Gabriel Bumpass, Daniel Matthews, James McConnell,Jesse Helton, George Rogers, Robert Chaffin, James Helton, Alex Miller, Andrew Alison, Thomas Hays, John Anthony, Aaron Choat, Isaac Pennington, George Sanders, John Braden, James Welch, James B radstreet, and Thomas Keys; of these, Henry Ross was chosen foreman. Fines for “affrays” making allowances for wolf scalps, and ordering new roads occupied the principal attention of the court. At the first term of this court James Helton was fined $1.50 for profane swearing, and a suit between David Beeler and John Welch was referred to David Crockett and John White as arbitrators, in which suit John Welch was allowed $5.40 for 108 pounds of pork.

The first term of circuit court was held in November of 1818, at the house of Dr. Farmer, as above. Thomas Stewart, of Franklin, appeared as judge, Charles Hick’s as clerk, and Thomas Chadwick as solicitor-general. Judge Stewart became circuit j udge of what was then the Fourth Circuit at its organization, in 1810, and continued to sit till his death, in 1842. Men have left more brilliant records Thomas Stewart, but few had a higher literary taste or left a more spotless name. The first circuit jury was composed of John Simonton, Thomas Parker, Thomas Welch, George Lucas, John Hillhouse, Pollard Wisdom, Henson Day, David Crockett, Joseph Gest, Nelson McIntrye, James McConnell, James Forbes and William Straughn. Wm. Mackey was tried before this jury for petit larency, but was found “not quilty.” The court, however thought there was strong grounds for belief in his quilt, and, therefore, taxed him with the cost of his prosecution. Wm. Cash brought suit for slander against James Hill, but in November, 1819, withdrew the suit and paid costs. Wm. Higgs, Thomas Keys, Daniel Adams and James Helton were each fined $5 and costs for gambling, August 4, 1819. November 1 David Crockett resigned as justice of the peace, and Rob. L. Cobbs was allowed $32 for ex office services as solicitor-general for (Page # 755 )1819. The court granted James Scott permission to build a mill-dam on Shoal Creek, near Lawrenceburg, in October, 1820. In 1821 the court met for the first time in the court house in Lawrenceburg, With R.L. Cobbs again as solicitor-general. For 1821 the county court appointed George Isom, Davis Steels and A.F. Larney judges of election at Pennington; Chas. Anderson and Chas. Thomas at Johnson’s Mill, and Rob. Chaffin, Maurice Crisp and Richard Hill at Lawrenceburg. At the January term of 1821 the justices of the county were divided into four divisions: Pollard Wisdom, George Archer, John Hillhouse, Andrew Brown and Henry Sharp being at the first; George Lucas, M. Crisp, Jesse Jackson, Sam D. Peteet and Phillip Chromister being of the second; Richard Hill Robr. Chaffin, John Welch and Lazarus Stewart of the third, and David A. Flannery, Jacob Pennicuff, Maurice Crisp, Henson Day and Henry Sharp of the fourth. In the same year five judgments for debt were rendered against David Crockett, all of which were allowed to go by default. July 5, 1822, a standard of weights and measures was ordered and a county seal adopted. Judgment was rendered against Patrick Gillespie, October 6 , 1825, for petit larency, and for punishment he received twenty-five lashes upon bare back. In 1832 Patrick Dyal got a $5 fine for gaming and foot-racing. Because T.J. Lindsey had gone to White County, Ill., and married Lucinda Hinton, his wife, Nancy, was granted a divorce from him. The first case of the penitentiary was John Branden, for horse-stealing. He was prosecuted by Judge Dillahunty and defended by Amos F. Goff and T. H. Cahal. He was sentenced to the penitetiary for three years, on August 28, 1833. In 1835, at the February term, there were thirteen cases of gaming, amounting in each case to a fine of about $5. In 1837 Isaac Hamilton received the long sentence of seven years and six months for an assault with intent to commit rape. Nove mber 14, 1837, Margaret C. Parrott, and she was parte testimony, was granted a divorce from Parrott, and she was entitled to the rights and privileges of a femme sole. In 1839 T. J. Deavenport was fined $5 for on elections. Nicholas Perkins was allowed 3,000 acres of land in the Seventh District, Range 4, Town 5, according to the law to “Incorporate Iron Works.” Passed October 25, 1824.

The first term of chancery court was held May 24, 1840, with L. M. Bramlett as chancellor of the middle division. There appearing no candidate for clerk and master, no business was done till the November term, when Augustine W. Bumpass was appointed c lerk and master. Chancellor Bramlett served till May, 1844 when he was succeeded by T. H. Cahal, the well known lawyer and statesman of Columbia. Chancellor Cahal was secceeded by Hon. A. O. P. Nicholson, of the same place in 1851, ( Page # 756 ) and he by J.L. Brine, in 1852. Stephen C. Pavatt became chancellor in February, 1855, and served till the courts were closed by the war. In 1870 this court was reorganized and Hon. G. H. Nixon became chancellor, which position he held with credit to himself a nd satisfaction to all to the present time. On Febraury 7, 1859, the State found an indictment for murder in the first degree against Lewis M. Kirk for the murder of Thomas J. Westmore, on November 9, 1858. The case was continued from court to court till in 1860, when the death of the defendant stopped proceedings, after having incurred a cost of $858.95, besides lawyer’s fees. In December, 1878, Bob Bently (colored) was indicted for the murder of Morgan McLaren (colored), and on the 21st of Decembe r was sentenced to a term of twenty years in the penitentiary, while Sam Swinton, an accomplice, received a fifteen-year sentence for the same offense. The Lawrence Couny Courts have had, comparatively, little litigation, yet they have been represented b y very able men.

The city of Lawrenceburg is situated on a 400 acre tract of land that was granted to John Thompson by the Legislature of North Carolina on April 14, 1792, for services rendered in a battalion raised for the defense of Davidson County. This claim was c omfirmed by an act of the Gerenal Assembly of Tennessee, passed November 23,1819. This land was surveyed on August 10, 1821, and was found to lie in Range 4, Section 4. The site was selected was David Crockett, Henry Sharp, John Beeler, M.H. Buchanan, H enry Phenix, Enoch Tucker, and Josephus Irvine, to whom the State of Tennessee gave 400 acres for the use of the town to be called Lawrenceburg. The place was selected on November 14, 1819, as above, and purchased purchased by the State from M.H. Buchana n and George Gresham. the located was four miles southwest of the geographical center of the county, about seventy-five miles west of south from Nashville on the old Untied States Military road. The first settler where Lawrenceburg stands, was Maximilia n H. Buchanan, who erected a house some years previous to the laying out of the town. The first merchant in the place was Joshua Borders, who began business in the place in 1820. The first hotel was opened in 1825, by Col. Joseph Terrell. Dr. Obediah S tribling, who was the first practicing physician, began practice there in 1821. A school was opened in the place 1822, by Ebenezer Evans. A postoffice was established in Lawrenceburg in 1822, with John Stribling as postmaster. William Davis was the fir st resident lawyer of the place, he having opened a n office in Lawrenceburg in 1822. A Methodist Church was erected in the place in 1826, with the Rev. John Manley as the first pastor. James K. Polk was admitted to the bar at Lawrenceburg October 2, 18 20, and it is claimed he made his ( Page # 757 ) maiden speech at this place, but as other places claim that honor, it is doubtless somewhat as the poet said of Homer: “ Ten cities claimed the Homer dead, Through which the living Homer begged his Br ead.”

The sale of lots, Robert Orr bought Lots 1, 2, 17 ans 25; Nathan McClenden, Lots 14, 21 and 13;, Thomas Davenpot, Lot 22; Davenport & Lucas, Lot 60;, Tom Holloand, Lot 6; A.W. Bumpass, Lots 70 and 73; Jacob Hueler, Lot 38; Robert Hay, Lot 41; Matthew L ove, Lot 42; Daniel Bentley, Lot 29; Thomas Blair, Lot 51; R.L. Cobb, Lots 65 and 72; and I.S. Cook ten acres of original 400 acres. The prices ranged from $50 to 300 per lot. The lands lying adjacent to the town were owned by James Scott, Josephus Irvi ne, Daniel Beeler and Samuel H. Williams. The halcyon days of Lawrenceburg were about 1850. It was then a place of great industrial activity. Various causes have grought about business changes. The present business of the place is as follows: General S tores--Simms & Stewart, Dustin & Dunn, M.J. Richardson, George Goedeker, Henry Cook and Mrs. Mary Fath. Grocery stores-- Springer & Busby, C.E. Barnett, Mrs. S.D. Luker, Harvey & Bro., Grocery and furniture. Drug store-- W.W. Neal. Professions, attorne ys-- R.H. Rose, T.D. Davenport, W.A. Stewart, S.A. Carroll. H.B. Sowell, J.B. Simms, J.B. Parker, and H. Nixon. Physicians-- W.W. & P.A. Neal, E. McClain, and Dr. Harvey. Hotel-- Lawrenceburg Hosue, Collins House. Livery stable-- Thomas Meredith.

The first newspaper published in Lawrenceburg was in 1846, and was called the Academist, and edited by Dr. William P. Rowels. This paper was purchased in September by Horne & Harrison; the latter sold his interest to A. Stribling in a short while. Ab out 1853-54, the paper was bought by Hatcher & Jarrett. It soon passed into the hands of a man named Anderson, and the whole was destoryed by fire about 1857 or 1858. In 1872, a paper called the Lawrenceburg Journal was started; connected with this pape r have been H.C. Bate, W.T. Nixon, Malone & Buchanan, Mr. Leman and John Schade. The paper has been changed in politics and name. It is now s stanch Republician paper, and is called the Lawrence Union. It is owned and managed by John Schade. The Lawre nce Journal is Democratic organ of Lawrence County. It is owned by the Lawrenceburg Publishing Company, formed in October 1884. It is composed of W. J. Nixon, W.H. Dustion, J.T. Stribling, W.A. Stewart and S.A. Carroll.

West Point was formerly called Blountsville, and was established in 1844 on the bank of Shoal Creek fifteen miles southwest from the county seat. It now contains one store with several saw-mills in the vicinity. ( Page # 758 ) Wayland Springs is situa ted on the west bank of Shoal Creek twenty miles southwest from Lawrenceburg. It was founded in 1846 on land owned by Simeon H. Wayland, in honor of whom is was named. This was a place of some note before the war as a health resort, but the place was di stored during that time, and never since regained its former prestiage. It now contains one store. Summertown lies thirteen miles north of Lawrenceburg, on the Columbia & Waynesboro Pike, and near the Nashville & Florence Railroad. It is more a camping place or summer resort than a place of business. It has excellant water and is cinsidered a very pleasant summer resort. It is very largely patronized by the people of Maury County.

Henryville is on the Columbia & Waynesboro Pike, twnty-six miles from either place and twelve miles north of Lawrenceburg. It was founded in 1844, and took its name from Henry, the original postoffice at the point. It was located on the land of Danie l McIntyre, near the site of “Old Town,” an old Indian village, which stood on the west bank of Buffalo River. The first dwelling in the place was built by Leroy Burns. It now contains one store and a blacksmith shop. Loretto is a small villa ge on the Military road, fourteen miles south of Lawrenceburg. It was founded in 1872 by Rev. John H. Hueser, of the Catholic Church. This was the outgrowth of the Homestead Association. The place contains about twenty-five houses, a Catholic Church, p riest’s residence, a convent and school. St. Joseph is about twenty miles southwest of Lawrenceburg and was founded in 1873. Alois Sandroell was the first citizen and merchant. The village now contains about twenty-five houses, a school, a fine st ore and a very fime Catholic church, built at the actual cost of about $17,000 besides the labor that was donated.

The military history of this county begins properly with the Mexican war, althrough eight ot ten Revolutionary veterans were buried in the county and a few of the later wars. In 1846 a company was raised for the Mexican war by Capt. William B. Allen, with the Hon. George H. Nixon as first lieutenant. A detail of the movements of the regiment, First Tennessee, Col. W.B. Campbell, is given in the State History. In the Public Square is a fine monument erected to the fallen of Capt. Allen’s company . The structure is about ten feet square at the base and forty feet in height. On the north face of the shaft is inscribed: “Erected to the Memory of Capt. William B. Allen, J.R. Burkett, G.W. Wilson, A.J. Eaton, J.A. Hill, E.W. Thomas, B.H. Dalton , B. Soaper, W. Rhodes, A.J. Gibson, G.B. Porter, J.H. Turner, J.H. Elliott, H. Collins, F.Glover, A.J. Pratt, Lieut. L.M. Putnam, W.H. Robinson, R.D. Willis, P.H. Martin, W.M. Alford, J.M. L. Campbell, ( Page # 759 ) J. H. Sanders, J.F. Coffee, J.H. Joh nson, E. Prior, of the First Regiment Tennessee Volunteers, who fell on the 21st of September, 1846, at the capture of Monterey by the Americans, under command of Maj. Gen. Z. Taylor.” On the east side is “Died of disease: S.H. Allen, J. Billin gsby, L.Garrett, J.M. Gray, W.W Lindsey, E. Tucker, A. Boswell, J.Farris, J. Goodman, S.G. Keltner, A. J. Lindsey, J.W. Walker.” The Venerable Col. George H. Dixon, of Lawrenceburg, is believed to be the only one of the company left living.

The first troops for the late war were Capt. B.F. Matthew’s company of the Third Tennessee. This company was recuited at Lawrenceburg in May 1861. The company officers were B.F. Matthews, Captain; J.C. Chaffin, first lieutenant; J.L. Chaffin, se cond lieutenant; Alonzo Lindsey, third lieutenat. The regimental officers were J.C. Brown, colonel;, Thomas Gordon, lietenant-colonel;, and N.G. Cheairs, major. There were also Capt. Lewis Miller’s company, Capt. A. J. Powell’s company and Cap t. William P. Moore’s company. On the organization of the Thirty-second Regiment, to which Capt. Moore’s company belonged, Ed Cook was choosen Colonel; W.P. Moore, Lieutenant-colonel, and W.J. Brownlow, Major. On the Promotion of W.P. Moorw, T.D. Davenport became captain, J.M. White, first-lieutenant, W.C. Anderson, second lieutanant, and R.L. Bassham, third lieutanant. The regiment encamped at Lake Springs, near Pulaski, and was mustered into service June 3, 1861, and October 7 left Pulask i, by train, for Nashville, and were sent to Camp Trousdale. A portion of the regimant was sent to Chattangooa, and 200 men were ordered up the Sequatchie Valley, where they remanied one week. The regimant was then sent to Bowling Green, Ky., under comm and of Gen. A.S. Johnson, and placed in S. B. Buckner’s brigade, where they were inspected by Gen. Hardee. They were ordered to Russellville, Clarksville and Donelson, where they arrived February 11. The experienced cold weather and hard fighting t here, and were captured. Among the killed was Col. Moore. The men were sent to Camp Morton, Indianapolis, were there held as prisoners of war till the last of August, when they taken to Vicksburg and exchanged. The regiment was reorganized September 13 by electing Ed Cook, colonel; J.P. McGown, lieutenant-colonel; and W.P. Neal, major. The Thirty-second was at Chickamauga September 19 and 20, and at Missionary Ridge November 25. The regimant took part in the Georgia Campaign, and was on the right at the fall of Atlanta. It followed Hood in Tennessee, almost without food or clothing: crossed the Tennessee at Florence, and passed up by way of Wayland Springs, Mount Pleasant, Columbia and reached ( Page # 760 ) Franklin at 11 o’clock on November 3 0, and was placed in position for assault. It followed the Federals to Nashville and drove in their pickets. It was then sent to Murfreesboro and skirmished a few days with the enemy, when they came out and gave battle. At the the defeat of Hood at Nas hville, the regiment retreated by way of Columbia, Pulaski, and crossed the river at Lamb’s Ferry. In the retreat the regiment was reduced to little more than a good company. The forces retired to Tupelo, Miss., where they encamped for a time, The y were sent into South Carolina. They were at Branchville, Columbia, and in North Carolina. They were placed in D.H. Hill’s corps of J.E. johnson’s command. In the retreat the regimant, by mistake, fell in behind the Federals, where they marc hed several days. The regiment surrendered at Greensboro, in 1865. They returned by way of Ashville, N.C., to Greenville, E.Tenn.; thence, by rail to Tullahoma, home. There were also the compamies of Capts. Lewis Kirk (J.H. Hogan, lieutenant) and Thoma s Paine in the cavalry service under Forrest. Besides these there were companies of Deering’s Fifty-fourth, but on the disbanding of that regiment they were put into Dixon’s Forty-eighth.

Schools are comtemporaneous with the county, but uniformity in the system is of modern growth. October 31, 1839, deeds to lots No. 52 and 53 were issued to George Lucas, William McKnight, T.D. Davenport, Ezekiel Lindsey, David Bentley, John Stephenson , A.W. Bumpass and Joseph Miller, as trustees of the Lawrenceburg Academy. September 11, 1848, a similar deed was make to Lots 64 and 78 for Jackson Academy, to the trustees of said academy. These were built out of the semiary fund, and the appointment of trustees was under the control of the county court. It thus remained until since the war.

In March, 1883, Jackson Academy was incorporated as the Lawrenceburg Academy, by Wm. Parked, Wm. H. Dustin, J.B. Simms, R.H. Harvey, W.C. Spence, W. F. Nixon and J.M. Gilmore, with a capital stock of $1,500, with the usual power granted such corporatio ns. This building is now used as the public school building. An excellant school os manitained ten months in the year.

The amount of expenditures for public schools and the scholastic populations, as far as shown by the reports since 1853, are as follows: In 1853, $2,476.44; 1854, $2,350.87; 1855, $1,991.43; 1856, $3,643,19; 1857, $3,777.35; 1858, $4,641,89; 1859, $4, 596.31; 1860, $2,564.80; 1861, $4,433.61; 1862, $2,035.80; 1866, $3,049.61; 1869, $3,602.20; 1871, 43,566.45; 1872, $3,164.38; 1880, $2,989.25; 1881, $3,146.82; 1882, $3,042.82; 1883, $5,032.80; 1886, $5,201.82. The scholastic population for 1860 (the fi rst shown) was 3,206; 1861, 3,132; 1866, 3,476; (Page # 761 ) 1880, 3,042; 1885, 3,580. The report of 1885 shows an attendence of 2,385. It further shows fifteen districts, one graded school, six consolidated schools, one under the managemeent of a town school board, and three incorporated under “four mile law.” The length of a school term is about sixty days.

The Cumberland Presbyterian Church in Lawrenceburg was begun in 1851. It was erected by the New School Presbyterians, the trustees at the time being J.A. Bradshaw, R.G. Ramsey, Phillip G. Austin, W.A. Edminston and George W. Richardson. The trustees borrowed $500 of the “erection fund” of the church for its construction. The church becoming weakened by the war and financially embarrassed, the building was sold, about 1878, to Wm. Parkes, as trustee of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. T he congregation at this place now numbers about sixty members. The membership of this congregration was origanally at Mount Ararat, but that was divided as a matter of convenience in worship. The church at Mount Nebo was built in 1857. The trustees at that time were Ruben McLaren, Thomas Gabel and Samuel Pierce.

The first Methodist Church built in Lawrenceburg was in 1826, with Rev. John Manley as pastor. This popular branch of the church has always kept a house of worship here. A new house of worship is now in course of construction.

The church at Pleasant Point was built in conjunction with the Masonic Hall in 1857. The trustees at the time were Thomas Kelsey, William L. McBride and J.J Penningotn. Another church was built in 1859, the trustees at the time being Alex. Stewart, T homas Archer, William B. Hall, D.H. Adkison and Ambrose Goodman. The Sugar Creek Church was built in 1885, the trustees being J.M. Bassham, J.J. Miller, J.M. Shelton, T.N. Hagan and W.C. Sills. The church in the Fifteenth District was built in 1881; the trustees at that time were Davis Gabel, Albert Kelly and Henry Welch. There were also churches at Wayland Springs and Chinnuby.

The Christian Church on buffalo Creek was built in 1854 on the land of J.A. Cavander. The Christians have churches at Liberty, Cherry Hill, Henryville, West Point, and at Wade’s Chapel.

The Primitive Baptists built their fisrt church near Henryville, in 1817, of which the Rev. John Hunter was pastor. The popular branch of hte church is now not very numerous in the county. An organization has been maintained on Blue Water almost sinc e the organization of the county.

The Catholic Church at Lawrenceburg was built in 1871. There is also in connection therewith two priets, a convent with seventeen or (Page # 762 ) eighteen nuns and six or seven brothers. A Catholic Church also stands about twelve miles west of Lawren ceburg, which is attended by the priests from Lawrenceburg twice a month. There is a church and convent about eleven miles north of Lawrenceburg, with one priest and four or five nuns. The Catholics have churches at Loretto and St. Joseph, mentioned els ewhere.

The only church house of Missionary Baptists is the Bethel Baptist Church, about four miles north of Lawrenceburg. This house was built in 1846, with Thomas Pullen, J.J. Foster and J.C. Sparkman as trustees.




Goodspeed Biographries of Lawrence County Citizens

Return to Lawrence County Main Page
  All Rights Reserved. This information may be used by libraries and genealogical societies, however, commercial use of this information is strictly prohibited without

Created and copied by: Reita Jones Burress