Tennessee Records Repository

Henderson Co. TN


Jonathan Kennon Thompson Smith

Mr. Jonathan Kennon Thompson Smith of Jackson has published seven genealogical miscellanies for Henderson County.  He wishes to share this information as widely as possible and has granted permission for these web pages to be created.  We thank Mr. Smith for his generosity.  Copyright, Jonathan K. T. Smith, 2001


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Adrienne Augusta Periard Amis passed from life near Juno in Henderson County almost eighty years ago but for some of her descendants she has an almost legendary character because this little lady began her life in Paris, France and while still a young woman settled down in southwest Henderson County where she ever afterwards lived.

Sometime later in life Adrienne took time to write about her early years, having realized that at least some of her future family and others who find relevance in the past, would enjoy reading about the modest saga that had been her life. This personal record, as she wrote it is given below.

Click here to seen copy of handwritten biography.


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Biography of Adrienne A. Amis

I was born in Paris, France June the 10 1849. My father Antoine Periard and mother, Antoinette Periard were both French. I was christen   under the Chatholic doctrine, having a guide father and mother appointed "as was the custom" should my father and mother die before I should become of age, then they would have to care for me and educate me untill I became of age. When I was nine days old there was a nurse provided to raise me by bottle as also a custom which cared for me untill I was two and half years. Then I was carried back home, but as my parents could not watch over me and do their work as they were working for the public, they allowed my great aunt Adrienne Charlaine to take me home with her and care for me untill I was six years old. My mother then took me home sent me to school with my brother Aristid Theodore Periard, he being seven years older than myself.

After the laps_ of two years my parents concluded they would emigrate to America. Father, mother, my guide mother, brother and myself took passage on a steam ship Sept. 2, 1858 and was sixty two days making the voriadge, during the lonely journey the ship caught on fire from the kitchen, it being build of pine and by earnest work from all on bord was soon extinguish. We landed Nov. 3, 1858 at New Orleans. There my parents resided untill the fowlowing August when the yellow fever took them both, left brother and myself among strangers as my guide mother had moved to Somerville, Tenn., where my guide father, Mr. August Glass was living. Brother and myself was both sick with the fever at the time of our parents death. There was a guardian appointed over us and I was put in the care of a lady by the name of Alfonce who had no children of her own. She was real cruel to me, she would make me read two hours and write two and if not done to please her would whip me with a leader /leather?/ whip made of narrow strip which had a small knot on the end of each strip, such as was used to whip negro slaves. My brother being employed at a drug store would sometimes come to see me. I complained to him of my treatment so he wrote to my guide father and mother and aquainted them of the way I was treated. Soon my guide mother could come she carried me home with her to Somerville, Fayette Co., Tenn. where I made my home.

Once more I was in the hands of friends and those that loved me. They sent me to school and done all that was in their power to make my life usefull and pleasant. In 1860 /1861/ the civil war was declared. Mr. Glass, pa as I learned to call him, taught me to help him make soldiers uniforms (being a tailor by trade) he took all pains to instruct me in cutting and making mens clothing. After compleating uniforms for two companies I started to school at the Female Institute which I continued going untill 1865 for then death took my guide mother at the agee of 75 years, once more I had a deep greaf which I never got over untill I was married for I was compell_ to stay at home and keep house for pa which I did for five long years.

June 20, 1870 I was married /to/ E. H. Amis, thus leaving my guide father alone, was was /sic/ very greavious to me for he had done so much for me but being at the age of twenty I knew it was time for me to look to my own intrest. Now I could say I began to feel that there was true love and happiness in the world for me. We lived a true happy life for only five short years for death took my dear husband and also my guide father and left me once more alone in the world with three sweet little children, the youngest being only nine months, I being very weakly not able to do any thing but sew to make a living for my little children.

A. A. Amis  


Information from other sources enables us to elaborate on some aspects of Adrienne's life. At the time she wrote her memoir she gave the incorrect year (1858) when her family immigrated to the United States. The contract in which her father, Antoine Periard, agreed to pay steerage is still in existence, presently owned by her descendant, Carol Ann Amis Stone of Lexington, Tennessee, through whose courtesy the first page of this document is reproduced on the next page.

This contract was finalized in Paris, August 10, 1857 in the office of Monsieur J. Barbe, owner of the ship, the Johanesberg, that the Periards would take to America. A total of 340 francs were paid, by instalment (all paid before embarking, however), for four persons, three adults and one child: Antoine Periard, his wife, Antoinette; children Christine (actually Aristide) and Adrienne. Accompanying them, perhaps paying her own way, was an aunt, Adrienne Mouton (Charlaine). The family left from Le Havre, a seaport on the north coast of France, September 2, 1857 and disembarked in New Orleans, Louisiana, November 3, 1857.


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(Courtesy of Carol Ann Amis Stone)

Click here for larger image.


Among the papers carried to the States by these folk was one written by Jean Marie Francois Mouton, evidently the father of Antoinette Mouton and brother of Adrienne Mouton Charlaine (and this paper is also owned by Carol Ann Aids Stone). It was an appeal dated in Paris, France, March l4, 1824, to the Duke of Angouteme, in which Mouton wrote that he had been born June 11, 1791 in Perone, Somme, France; that he had entered military service in the 8th Regiment of the Hussars, March 7, 1811; that he had served in the arduous campaign (under Napoleon Bonaparte) in Russia; that he was captured there and imprisoned there for twenty-seven months before his release and return to Paris in January 1814; that he volunteered for the Royal Guard Regiment of the Hussars at Fountainbleau, December 17, 1815; had reenlisted later and left military service, December 18, 1823; that after thirteen years of service, including three military campaigns, all the time as a POW with lasting injuries from the Russian campaign, he had finally resigned in 1823, without a pension and that he was a poor man whose parents could not continue to assist him financially. He applied for a modest pension. It is not known if he was successful in his appeal.


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Antoinette Mouton was born about 1823 and it may be that Jean Marie was particularly needy to help support an immediate family.

Adrienne lost her parents to yellow fever, the scourge of the Lower Mississippi River Valley. According to their death certificates, Antoine Periard died at home in New Orleans, August 19, 1858; a native of Lorraine, France, he was aged thirty-seven years. Antoinette Mouton Periard, aged thirty-five years, a native of Augerville, France, died August 20, 1858. (New Orleans Death Records, Book 19, page 118) Adrienne's brother, Aristide, continued to live in New Orleans where he died 1890/91; though married he had no children.

In her memoir Adrienne wrote of her "guide mother," essentially the same as "god mother," who had joined the young girl's "guide father," August Glass, a middle-aged man, living in Somerville, the county seat of Fayette County, Tennessee. There the census enumerator recorded of them, June 2, 1860 (page 410), that August Glass, aged 49, native of Germany, was a tailor; the aunt was called Mrs. Challors, aged 71, native of France. In his October 11, 1856 declaration of intention to file for naturalization, in the Circuit Court of Hancock County, Illinois, reveals that Glass had been born January 16, 1811 in Cassel, Germany; that he migrated from Le Havre, France, November 1, 1853 to New Orleans, January 16, 1854. He was issued a copy of this record October 8, 1857 shortly before his relocation to Tennessee. In June 1866 August Glass gained his U.S. citizenship through the Fayette County, Tennessee Circuit Court. His bold signature on the 1856 document:

In the TENNESSEE STATE GAZETTEER, Sheppard & Company, Memphis, 1866, page 313:

In his obituary (SOMERVILLE FALCON, December 11, 1873), brought to the attention of the present writer by Joy Rosser of Somerville, it was reflected that he had been "a good, law-abiding citizen" of his adopted town where he died December 9, 1873. Inferentially, from surviving records, Glass and members of his hosehold lived in a residence/shop on North Street, a block north of the public square in Somerville. The day before he died, Glass executed his last will, leaving "to my adopted daughter, Augustine Adrian Amis, wife of Edwin H. Amis, "his entire estate, including his Somerville real estate (lot three, block E, purchased by Glass in October 1866; deed book X, pages 332-333). This will was probated January 9, 1874. (Fayette County Will Book B, pages 314-315) W. A. Milliken, who qualified to settle Glass' estate, filed his final report concerning the same April 10, 1874. (Fayette County Court Minute Book N, page 553)

Adrienne Periard had attended the Somerville Female Institute located a short distance south of the public square in Somerville, for several years. (The building in which it was held during her time there burned in 1876.) She met, was courted by Edwin H. Amis (born January 9, 1845), a native of Fayette County, a son of Joseph and Annis Amis, natives of North Carolina; he was a carpenter by trade (some of his carpenter's tools are now owned by a descendant, Bettie Pope Sheppard of Lexington). This couple were married June 27, 1869 (not 1870), the day after he had secured a license for their marriage before William Hafford, a Methodist pastor. (Fayette County Marriage Book B, page 414)


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Edwin Amis' brother, Samuel (Sam) Satterfield Amis (born January 10, 1840), a man of olive complexion and hazel eyes, had enlisted in the Confederate Army, Company A, 13th Tennessee Infantry Regiment, in Jackson, Tennessee, in May 1861; had received a medical furlough because of a "lung affection" in May 1862 and never returned to active service. (Compiled Military Service Record, CSA; his Tennessee Civil War Pension Application #10, 129) His brother, William Lewis Amis, had gone from Tennessee to Corinth, Mississippi to bring him home where he recuperated.

Sam Amis married Clara Amis, December 12, 1866 (Fayette County Marriage Book B, page 171); they had one child to live, Charles, born December 31, 1870 (married Sarah True and moved to Ft. Worth, Texas; children: Roy, Alvin, Lloyd, Floyd, Charlie and Lucille). The two Amis couples decided to relocate, to an adjoining farm near Juno in southwest Henderson County, Tennessee; each claimed 139 acres. Adrienne and Edwin lived in a large, two room (with passageway) log residence facing north, on the stage road from Lexington to Jackson, Tennessee (now essentially U.S. Highway 412); there was a fireplace located on the east and west ends of the rooms; eventually an L-shaped room, almost with a fireplace, was built on the south side of the house. (This dwelling stood until it was demolished in 1965 or 1966.) Sam and Clara Amis lived on the opposite side of the road, to the north of his brother and sister-in-law. There Clara Amis died in 1873.

Edwin H. Amis

Edwin Amis sickened and died December 28, 1874. Left as she was, in meager circumstances, Adrienne Amis consented to marry her brother-in-law, Sam Amis; widow and widower were married January 5, 1875.

Adrienne and Edwin Amis had three children: August Joseph, born April 4, 1870; William Brown, born January 15, 1872; Annis Rebecca (initially named Mary Annis), born April 6, 1874. Adrienne and Sam Amis had six children, three of whom survived infancy: Edna Salome, born October l, 1880; Samuel Garrett, born January 26, 1884; DeWitt Swift, born April 9, 1886. These births and other vital statistics were entered in the Amis family Bible published by J. Harding, Philadelphia, Pa., 1856 (now owned by Bettie Pope Sheppard of Lexington).

Click here to see Amis family bible.

Bettie Pope Sheppard also owns Adrienne's devotional New Testament published by the Christian Herald Press, N.Y., 1899.

Note: The birth and death dates of' Edwin and Sam Amis' parents, Joseph and Annis Amis, are given in the family Bible as well as those of several of their children, including that of Mary - Mollie - who never married and made her home with her brother Sam and family. The marriage bond of Joseph Amis and Annis Satterfield, in Person Co., North Carolina, was dated December 9, 1833. The U.S. Census, August 22, 1850, Civil District 1, Fayette Co., Tenn., page 467: Joseph Amis, 35, N.C.; Annis Amis, 36, N.C.; William Amis, 15, N.C.; John W. Amis, 14, N.C.; James D. Amis, 12, Tenn.; Ann E. Amis, 10, Tenn.; Samuel Amis, 7, Tenn.; Edwin H. Amis, 6, Tenn. The birth date of William Lewis Amis is misgiven as 1833 in the Bible (his parents were only married late in 1833). Sam Amis always gave his birth year as 1840. A daughter, Mary, was born in 1852. In the 1870 U.S. Census, August, Somerville, Tenn., page 186: Joe Amis, 56, N.C., wheelwright; Annis. Amis, 57, N.C.; Mary Amis, 18, Tenn.; Ed Amis, 26, Tenn.; Adrien Amis, 21, Tenn. /obviously incorrect!/; August J. Amis, several months, Tenn. That year, Sam and Clara Amis were resident in the 8th Civil District of Fayette County.


(Page 28)


Sam Amis and sister, Mollie Amis

The Amises attended Shady Grove Methodist Episcopal Church, South, a small frame building, then located about a mile from their home, off Poplar Springs-Juno Road. In later years Adrienne's three oldest chilfren donated just over an acre of land to this congregation, a short distance west of the Amis home-place as "a site on which to erect a house of worship," in August 1927; the next year the congregation relocated at this site, in a frame building, where it remains. (Henderson County Deed Book 47, pages 72-73; August 16, 1927; registered September 10, 1927)

Late in her life, Adrienne, fine seamstress that she was, made several cloth objects for her granddaughters, including a black silk jacket and a silk pillow, both of which are still owned by descendants; some of the material was taken from the silk clothing that had once belonged to a great-grand aunt of hers (according to a note she wrote to Jewel Amis Pope, now owned by Bettie Pope Sheppard of Lexington).

For four years before her death, Adrienne suffered from neuritis; she died from nephritis, September l, 1922; she was buried, as were her husbands and several of their other relatives in the burial ground of Nebo Methodist. Church located on Whitefern Road near Huron, Tennessee. (LEXINGTON PROGRESS, September 8, 1922) Sam Amis lived on until February 16, 1927; he was buried beside his first wife, Clara, at Nebo; described as, "Amiable, jovial and versatile in conversation." (LEXINGTON PROGRESS, February 25, 1927)

On November 22, 1917 Adrienne had executed her last will (Henderson County Will Book 1895-1932, page 366; only probated in 1927 after her husband's demise); her handwritten copy:


(Page 29)

Perhaps at the behest of Adrienne, her husband, Sam Amis, in February 1921 sold his interest in the 139.5 acre homeplace that had been his brother Edwin's (an interest acquired through his marriage with Ed's widow) to her three oldest children for one thousand dollars. (Henderson County Deed Book 38, pages 358-359; February 14, 1921; registered April 23, 1921) In April 1933 these three siblings divided the 139.5 acres among themselves, with portions determined by value: Annis R. Chick, 30 acres; William B. Amis, 40 acres; A. J. Amis, 69.5 acres. (IBID. Deed Book 51, pages 460, 473, 502; April 28, 1933) Edna Amis bought her father, Sam Amis' farm from his other heirs in February 1930 (Henderson County Deed Book 49, pages 258-259; February 15, 1930; registered February 25, 1930); a portion of it was acquired by her brother, Samuel G. Amis; forty-three acres of it are now owned by Tommy Wayne Amis, a great-grandson of Adrienne and Edwin Amis.


Adrienne and Her Children
Back Row, left to right: Edna Amis; Adrienne Amis; Annis Amis
Front Row, left to right: William B. Amis, August J. Amis, Samuel G. Ams, DeWitt S. Amis


The children of Adrienne Ants and Edwin H. Amis:

1. AUGUST JOSEPH (Gussie) AMIS (April 4, 1870-January 26, 19h9); married Bettie Alice Ballard (September 2, 1871-December 19, 1971), February 26, 1896. Henderson County farmer; member of Shady Grove Methodist Church. Children:
A. Guy Ballard Amis (December 11, 1897-January 12, 1980); teacher, 1921-1933; supt. of Lexington city schools, 1933-1941; for years president of Central State Bank, Lexington; town park named for him; married Dora Alberta Holmes (April 27, 1902-August 8, 1994), December 24, 1923. Children: A-l. Carol Ann Amis, born November 29, 1929; married William Thomas Stone (born September 30, 1927), August 4, 1950, Lexington, Tennessee. Their daughter, Sandra Ann Stone, born February 6, 1956; married Gregory E. Spears, December 21, 1991. Children: Lydia Ann Spears, born November 11, 1992; Rebekah Ann Spears, born August 1, 1994; Miriam Ann Spears, born July 31, 1996; Phoebe Ann Spears, born August 16, 1999. A-2. Shirley Ruth Amis, born and died September 2, 1933.


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B. Jewel Lois Amis (November 6, 1905-January 23, 1996); married Robert Ocie Pope (December 16, 1903-November 28, 1970) , September 4, 1927. Child :Betty Jean Pope, born July 20, 1928; married Varnel Lee Sheppard (April 20, 1928-June 20, 2000), May 2, 1948. Successful business-folk of Lexington. Their children:
B-1-1. Judy Pope Sheppard, born February 11, 1949; married Randel Duke, February 8, 1968. Their children: Brian Randel Duke, born August 4, 1970; Brent Michael Duke, born March 20, 1973 (married Deena Teague and have children, Kristin Michelle, born November 4, 1995 and Kaeli Lyn, born March 8, 1999); Bradley Jason Duke, born July 28, 1978.
B-1-2. Terry Lee Sheppard, born December 13, 1954; married Marlene Jowers, Dec. 19, 1974. Their children: Tiffany Heather Sheppard, born May 11, 1976; Torrey Sutton Sheppard, born December 27, 1987.
B-1-3. Tony Lee Sheppard, born November h, 1968; married Rachel Ann Lemley, August 7, 1993. Their daughter, Lydia Elizabeth Sheppard, born September 21, 2000.

2. WILLIAM BROWN AMIS (January 15, 1872-September 14, 1945); married (1) Mrs. India Pinkston, April 9, 1908 (divorced), in Texas, no children; (2) Mrs. Mollie Palmer Miller (widow of Samuel H. Miller) (April 6, 1882-August 19, 1964), January 8, 1920. Alumnus, University of Oklahoma. Henderson County farmer. Seventh Day Adventist. (LEXINGTON PROGRESS, October 5, 1945 ) Children:
A. Alice Augusta Amis (November 1, 1921-April 13, 1987); married John Pat Bond (November 30, 1907), October 24, 1960. Bond Crossing, Madison County, Tennessee. Their son, A-l. John Robert Bond, born September 18, 1962; B.A., Union University, 1984; MBA, Memphis State University, 1989; vice-president, Insouth Bank, Brownsville, Tennessee; single.
B. Martha Frances Amis (August 25, 1925-December 4, 1941).
C. Thomas Brown Amis, born November 10, 1923; served in Company C, 635 Artillery Battalion, World War 2, Europe; Henderson County farmer; married Eva Mae Essary (January 31, 1921-June 15, 1999). Their son, C-l. Tommy Wayne Amis, born February 11, 1948; educator; Henderson County; married Rita Buck (born April 29, 1952), June 19, 1978 and have children: ChristyRenee Amis, born September 20, 1973; Timothy Lynn Amis, born January 7, 1979.

3. ANNIS REBECCA AMIS (April 6, 1874-February 12, 1946); married John W. Chick, November 24, 1905; no children; lived in Wilkins, Oklahoma and Texline , Texas but returned to live near Huron, Tennessee.


The children of Adrienne Amis and Samuel S. Amis (those surviving infancy):

l. Edna Salome Amis (October 1, 1880-February 6, 1948); married late in life to Andrew Wilson Jones; no children. Lexington, Tenn. She left her estate, including 92 acre farm near Juno to her husband. (Henderson County Will Book 4, page 305; will probated Feb. 14, 1948)

2. SAMUEL GARRETT (Sammie) AMIS (January 26, 1884-January 26, 1968); married (1) Essie Patton, November 9, 1913 (divorced). Their children: Jessie May Amis, born March 1, 1915 and died in childhood; Joseph D. Amis, born June 10, 1917 and died single, 1961; Edwin A. Amis, June 17, 1920-April 21, 1990; married with a son, Rudolph Amis, Missouri. (2) Edna Threadgill (1904-1993), May 22, 1937; a son of hers from a former relationship, Fay Amis (1928-1942).

3. DEWITT SWIFT AMIS (April 9, 1886-August 8, 1909), a single young man who died from typhoid fever. Buried near his parents at Nebo.


Return to Table of Contents for A Genealogical Miscellany Henderson County Tennessee

volume I · volume II · volume III · volume IV · volume V · volume VI · volume VII