Soil, Timber, Crops
The soil of this county is exceedingly fertile, being either of a black or brownish red color; the latter color is doubtless due to the iron oxides contained in it. Although there are many places where the ground is apparently covered with stone, yet by careful husbandry there are few places that cannot be made to yield a rich harvest to the careful and industrious husbandman. Fields that have been cultivated for nearly a century, and are apparently worn out by the cultivation of corn and cotton, are soon reclaimed by a few years' growth of red clover, or by seeding in the blue-grass, make excellent grazing lands. The native growth of timber embraces almost every kind grown in the temperate climate. The native trees that are valuable in the markets are oak, hickory, walnut, poplar and cedar,  vast quantities of the latter being shipped to all parts of the county,  and until within the last few decades was almost the exclusive article of produce for the market, and it is still more largely cultivated than any other one thing, yet large quantities of wheat and corn are raised.  The production of these three articles is almost marvelous in some instances with a suitable season. The intelligent farmer has learned the necessity of a rotation in crops for the improvement of the land and to guard against over production in some articles and the  necessary consequences - dull prices for that article. His crops are now more varied, more wheat and corn and pasture lands. This brings about a necessity for more stock, and such is now seen. The county is now largely engaged in breeding fine horses, cattle and sheep. These are bringing rich rewards to those so engaged. Large quantities of rye, oats, barley, tobacco, potatoes, hay, peas, pans, wool, butter and cheese are also produced. The product of the orchard and garden embraces everything from the smallest and sweetest berry to the finest apple. The quantity is only limited by the effort of the producer. The east fork of Stone River enters this county near Reddyville in the eastern part of the county and flows almost in a northwest direction through its entire course. It forms a part of the boudary line between Districts No. 17 and 19; from 19 it receives Andrew and McKnight Creeks as tributaries. At the corners of Districts No. 17, 19 and 22, it received Cripple Creek (named from an accident befalling a man while crossing it) as a tributary; this with its branches rises mainly in District No. 22. Stones River passes through the central part of District No. 22, and near the western part received Cave Creek from the south and Bradley Creek from the north. The last named with Stones River forms the boundary line between Districts Nos. 22 and 15. Near the central part of District No. 21 it receives Bushman Creek. Stones River then forms the boundary line between Districts No. 15 and 5 on the north, and Districts Nos. 22, 21, 9 and 6 on the south, where it unites with the west fork of Stones River. 
Rivers and Boundaries
The west fork enters this county near the southeastern part of the county, and forms a part of the boundary between Districts Nos. 21 and 25; at the northern extremity of District No. 25 it receives the waters of Long Creek, which is the boundary line between District No. 25 on the east and Districts Nos. 20 and 11 on the west. The main stream forms the boundary between Districts Nos. 18 and 11;    near the center of District No. 11 it receives the waters of Lytle Creek, and near the center of District No. 11 it receives a tributary of its own name. The head waters of the last named is called Dry Fork. West fork passes through Districts Nos. 13 and 9; near Florence Station it receives the waters of Armstrong Creek, the two branches, east and west fork, unit, and form one stream near Jefferson. The river passes out of the county in a northwest direction; from the south on the boundary of Districts No. 6 and 2 it receives Stewart Creek. Stones River was discovered and explored as far as Jefferson by Gen. Uriah STONE and four men in 1794. It was for STONE that the river was named. Other streams in the county were named in honor of prominent families. 
Early Settlers
Previous to 1780 the Indians held undisputed sway in the county. The old trace leading from Nashville to Chattanooga is yet to be seen. Along this route the Choctaws, Chickasaws, and particularly the Cherokees, held undisputed sway from time immemorial.  Soldiers sent out by Gen. ROBERTSON went as far as Black Fox  Camp Spring in 1793. In 1794 ORR's expedition, sent out by Gen. ROBERTSON, followed the trace by way of Murfreesboro, and September 7, 1794, camped near Black Fox's Spring. This expedition extended as far as Nickajack, where the Indians were defeated. Few Indian troubles occurred after that time. The first settlers in the county were mainly from Virginia and North Carolina.  Those coming from Virginia came mainly by water by way of the Ohio and Cumberland Rivers; those coming from North Carolina over  the mountains on pack-horses. The parent State, North Carolina, as an inducement to have the lands on the "Cumberland" settled up, offered 640 acres to each head of a family who would live upon the land; hence the large number of 640-acre grants.  Samuel WILSON, grandfather of Col. JETTON, is said to have visited the vicinity of Jefferson as early as 1788-89, and marked out lands. He soon after returned with his family and settled at Wilson Shoals on Stones River. He has the honor of having planted the first corn within the forks of Stones River; also of having killed the last elk in the county, near Murfree Spring. He left a large and respectable family and died in 1827, and was buried with the honors of war near where the United States Cemetery now is. Thomas NELSON,  Thomas HOWELL and William ADKINSON settled near Stewart Creek. Col. Robert WEAKLEY and Robert BEDFORD each owned grants at the confluence of the east and west forks of Stones River. These lands were taken up previous to 1800. It was largely through the influence of these two men that the first seat of justice was located at Jefferson. William NASH, who, with Col. WEAKLEY, surveyed the line separating Rutherford from Davidson, is said to have owned the first store in the county. It was he who administered the oath of office to the justices of the first county court. Nimrod MENIFEE settled the land now marked by the United States Cemetery. The place is marked by two historic events, one the opening of the second year of the county courts, and  the other, fifty-seven years later, within a few days, the opening of  the second year of the war and with it one of the bloodiest battles of modern times. Robert OVERALL settled near Overall Creek, to which his name was given. His family has been prominent in the history of the county since its inception. Another early settler in that vicinity was Capt. Richard RANSOM, who came from North Carolina in 1810 and settled near the head of Overall Creek. Rev. James BOWMAN was another settler in that vicinity, and was one of the early ministers of the Presbyterian Church. Each of the last  was the head of a large family. Charles READY settled near Readyville, to which his name was given. He settled in the county about 1800, and was one of the seven justices that constituted the first court in Rutherford County; also he was one of the seven commissioners to select a new county seat, appointed by the General Assembly in October, 1811. Of all these he was last to die. Thomas RUCKER, another one of the seven justices, lived between Murfreesboro and Jefferson; his place came in one vote of being  made the county seat, instead of Murfreesboro. Richard SANDERS  and family came from North Carolina about 1806, and settled on Stones River, in the neighborhood called "Raleigh." In the same vicinity were the FLOYDs, BRASHEARS, WIGHTs and GOODLOEs. Murfreesboro marks the settlement of Capt. William Lytle the great natural feature of this county caused more good mills to be erected at an early day than was the case in other places.   A few tread-mills were established in the county, but the vast  majority of the mills were propelled by water-power. Thomas  RUCKER built a mill on his place called the "Cave" Mill in 1799.  Louis ANTHONY's mill was built on Stones River, adjoining Henry  GILHAM's place, in 1804. CUMMINGS' and SMITH mills each  existed at the beginning of 1804. John M. TILFORD built a grist and  saw-mill on the west fork of Stones River, near the Salem Pike, in 1814-15; a distillery was added to this later. Samuel TILFORD built a mill on the east fork in 1815. David DICKMAN built a mill on the west fork in 1809, and in the same year James RUCKER built a cotton-gin, the first in the county. Rates then were fixed by law as  follows: Dinner, 25 cents; supper and breakfast, 20 cents each; lodging, 8-1/8 cents; horse, with corn or oats and fodder, 33-1/8  cents; oats, per gallon, 8-1/8 cents; whisky, one-half pint, 12-1/2  cents; peach brandy, one-half pint, 12-1/8 cents; French brandy,   rum or wine, one-half pint, 50 cents. The following kept ordinaries  previous to 1820: William MITCHELL, William NASH, Harvey  POPE, Charles O'FLYNN, Hugh GOOD, James HILL, William   HANSBROUGH, W. R. HEARN, Thomas MAYFIELD, Peter WILLIAMS, William RATHER and T. GOODRICH. It is claimed  that William NASH started the first trade-store in the county. This was near Jefferson about 1803. The usual stock in trade consisted of few articles of dry goods, some groceries, a little powder and lead  and the inevitable barrel of whisky. Money being scarce a system of xchange was instituted. Large ox hides were rated at about $4; inferior ones proportionately less; wolf scalps, at $2.50 each, 
receivable for taxes; deer skins, 50 cents; deer "saddles," 50 cents 
per pair; 'coon skins, 25 cents each. These, with other produce, 
were sent to New Orleans by flat-boat, a journey requiring a month 
or more to complete. Dollars were frequently cut into halves or 
quarters and given for change, hence two "bits," four "bits," etc. 
Food consisted solely of the product of the farm and forest. A little 
corn was raised, and either eaten as hominy or made into an 
indifferent meal, and then into bread. Turkey, deer and elk 
abounded; hogs were allowed to run at large, and when wanted
were hunted sown and shot; clothing was made of the coarsest 
homespun. A maid dressed after the fashion of the day looked as 
lovely to her rustic lover, though dressed in a homely garb, with 
cheeks aglow with health, as does now the belle of fashion, in her 
silks and jewels, to her gay suitor. Articles of household furniture 
were simple and plain. Gourds and cows' horns were dressed, and, 
with a handle adjusted, were used for drinking vessels. Stills were as 
numerous as the mills, and the whisky barrel as common as the meal 
tub. Instead of the social "glass" of the more refined society, they 
were simply asked to take a "horn," i.e., a drink; hence the origin of 
the expression "take a horn." Dr. Thomas NORMAN was born on 
the night following the completion of the survey of the county, which 
had been assigned to William NASH and Col. Robert WEAKLEY, 
consequently he as the first child born in Rutherford County. Black 
Fox Camp Spring was a marked place during the Indian troubles. 
There is a beautiful tradition of the celebrated Black Fox, who, when 
he was overpowered by his enemies, rather than fall into their hands, 
leaped into the spring with his arms and sank from sight. The story 
would have been incomplete had he not come to light again, and the 
tradition that buried him brought him out alive at Murfree Spring. 
About three miles from Murfreesboro is the old BRADLEY race 
track, which was a famous resort for sportsmen since 1820. Col. 
Robert SMITH was a prominent figure in those races. Betting, card 
playing, and the usual accompaniment were common at those races. 
Near this old race track is the old Indian dance ground, which is a 
circular track dug out of the earth and rock. Neither history nor 
tradition tells of its origin. 
Districts Divided
As the law now is, counties having a population of between 7,000 
and 10,000 must be divided into 7 civil district; those between 
10,000 and 15,000 into 12 districts; those between 15,000 and 
20,000 into 15 districts; those having from 20,000 to 25,000 into 17 
districts; those having from 25,000 to 30,000 into 20 districts, and 
those above 30,000 have 25 districts. These are numbered by the 
ordinal numbers. Previous to the constitutional convention in 1834 
the districts were named from prominent families, as SANDERS, 
READY, MAY and MURPHY Districts. The first divisions were 
made in 1804. The county was then divided into three divisions. 
Thomas RUCKER, John HOWELL and Thomas MITCHELL were 
ordered to make the divisions. The first was made by a line along the 
west fork of Stones River to the most westerly branch to the Indian 
"trace;" thence along the "trace" to the Wilson County line; thence 
along the county line to SMITH's mill; thence on a line to 
CUMMINGS' mill; thence to the place of beginning. The second 
contained all west of the river to the western boundary. The third all 
north of the road leading from SMITH's and CUMMINGS' mill and 
east of Stones River. James RUCKER, James HOWELL and 
William LYTLE were appointed cotton inspectors, each for his own 
warehouse or district. Tobacco inspectors were appointed after the 
manner of cotton inspectors. Polls were listed and taxes assessed in 
the various parts of the county by the justices of the respective 
districts. The heads of families, when not over age, were enrolled 
into militia companies, and they were listed by companies. The first 
of this kind was in 1805, when Justice John HILL listed Capt. John 
SMITH's company; William NASH listed Capt. Samuel 
McBRIDE's company; W. W. SEARSEY, W. W. SEARSEY's 
company; William LYTLE, Capt. John JOHN's company; William 
SMITH, Capt. O. M. BENGE's company, and Charles READY, 
Capt. Alexander McKNIGHT's company. These companies varied 
with the population. In 1806 the captains of companies were as 
follows: Capts. Alex McKNIGHT, Peter NOE, R. READY, Henry 
McCOY, Nimrod JUNKINS, William ROBINSON, Thomas 
McBRIDE and John SMITH. The districts mentioned above have 
been subject to many changes since 1834, as well as before that 
time, this depending upon the whims and conveniences of the 
people. The county court every few years makes a slight change in 
these, so many having been made that it would be too tedious to 
follow all. The usual price paid for listing up to 1834 was $20 to 
each lister. In 1818 the captains of companies were WEBB, 
1821 the number had increased to twenty-three companies, and in 
1824 to twenty-six. The number increased yearly till 1833, when the 
number had reached thirty-six companies. They were as follows: 
this time on the respect and enforcement of the militia laws gradually 
grew into neglect. This county was organized by an act of the 
General Assembly then in session at Knoxville, October 25, 1803, 
but the courts for the county were not organized till January 3, 1804. 
The county was named in honor of Gen. RUTHERFORD, of North 
Carolina, who was known in the Revolutionary war, and also in 
contests with the Indians within the confines of this county. It will not 
seem strange that the county should have been named in honor of a 
North Carolinian, when it is remembered that previous to 1796, 
Tennessee was a part of that territory. Rutherford County was 
formerly included in Davidson and Williamson Counties. The dividing 
line was "on the extreme height of the ridge between Mill Creek and 
Stones River; thence southwardly to the eastern boundary of 
Williamson; thence with the line of Williamson to the southern 
boundary of the State; thence with the State line east to the corner of 
Wilson County; thence with the Wilson County line north to the 
corner of Wilson; thence with the line of Wilson 6-1/2 degrees west 
to the southwest corner of Wilson; thence a direct course to the 
mouth of Sugg Creek; thence a direct line to the place of beginning; 
that the county so laid off on the east and southeast of the waters of 
Stones River, etc., be known and distinguished by the name of 
Rutherford." The same act that created the county also ordered the 
county board (justices) to meet in March, June, September and 
December annually. Rutherford County was declared a part of Metro 
District. By an act, November 7, 1803, Samuel WEAKLEY and 
William NASH were appointed to fix the boundary line between 
Davidson and Rutherford Counties. By an act, August 3, 1804, John 
HILL, Frederick BARFIELD, Mark MITCHELL, Alexander 
McBRIGHT and Peter LEGRAND were appointed to select a
central site for a seat of justice for the new county. They were to 
receive by purchase or donation forty acres of land upon which they 
were to erect or cause to be erected a "court house, prison and 
stocks;" to lay out a town to be named by the commissioners; lots
were to be sold at auction to the highest bidder; lots were to be 
advertised in the "Tennessee Gazette," and the proceeds of the sale 
to be used in the building of the court house, jail and stocks. On 
December 3, 1807, Bedford County was cut off from Rutherford, 
thus reducing the latter to the constitutional limits. Minor changes 
were made in 1815, 1837, 1843, 1844, 1848, 1851, 1852, 1854, 
1856, 1860, 1867, 1868, 1870, 1871, 1877, 1879 and 1883. 
County Seat
The above named board selected a site within the forks of Stones 
River for a county seat. The town was regularly laid out having about 
150 town lots and a Public Square on which was erected a good 
brick court house which stood till 1835. The town was named 
Jefferson. The following prison bounds were established: "Beginning 
at the junction of the east and west fork of Stones River running up 
the west fork of said river at low water mark to the first cross street; 
thence south to the south boundary of Main Street; thence east with 
said boundary so as to include the Public Square to a post ten poles 
below MITCHELL's ordinary on the south boundary of said street; 
thence north to the low water mark of the east fork of Stone River; 
thence down the same to the place of beginning." Norton GREEN 
was appointed overseer of the streets and Public Square. The 
following were among the first purchasers of lots in Jefferson: Peter 
COOK, Theophilus CANNON, Joseph BENNETT, William 
CARLISLE, Harrison GILLIAM, John BELL, Samuel BELL, 
Daniel FERGUSON, J. A. LEWIS, George DOUGLAS, Robert 
Norton GREEN and Mark MITCHELL, who kept the first ordinary 
in the place. The rich farming lands surrounding Jefferson and river 
transportation gave it a prospect of becoming an important 
commercial emporium at no distant day. Some very distinguished 
men attended court at Jefferson, among whom were Felix 
GRUNDY and Thomas H. BENTON. Dissatisfaction arose as to 
the location of Jefferson as a seat of justice; a most central location 
was desired. October 17, 1811, the Legislature appointed Charles 
John THOMPSON commissioners to select a permanent seat of 
justice for the county. They were directed to have due regard to 
good water and a central location. Sixty acres of land were to be 
procured by purchase or donation. A struggle was made to secure 
the seat. Readyville RUCKER's place, Black Fox Spring and Capt. 
William LYTLE's place were offered. The commissioners visited the 
various places mentioned. Charles READY prepared a sumptuous 
dinner, the Rev. HENDERSON delivered an address, toasts were 
drank and strong efforts were made to have RUCKER's place 
chosen. The commissioners were also entertained by LYTLE, where 
the vote was taken on his proposition to donate sixty acres of land 
south of "Murfree Spring Branch" to the commissioners. The vote 
- four in favor of LYTLE's offer. The opposition led by READY had 
ARMSTRONG, BRASHEARS and READY - three votes in favor 
of RUCKER's place. Such was their chagrin at their defeat that they 
refused to sign the deeds to the lots sold. All of the original deeds 
simply bear the names of Hugh ROBINSON, Hans HAMILTON, 
John THOMPSON and Owen EDWARDS. The only reserve made 
in the deed was a mutual understanding that LYTLE should have one 
lot redeeded to him. This was accordingly done and the 
commissioners gave the lot on the southeast corner of the Square. 
The land now in the hands of the commissioners was a part of the 
lands originally entered by William LYTLE and Archibald LYTLE. 
The sale of lots was advertised in the Knoxville and Nashville 
"Gazette" to begin on June 12, 1812. The lots sold at auction and 
were disposed of rapidly. George SMITH received Lots 12 and 15 
for $116.25. Other purchasers were Daniel DICKINSON, William 
LYTLE, Samuel WILSON, Henry TRATT, Robert JETTON, John 
M. TILFORD, Wilson KERR, Bennett SMITH, James 
Hezekiah CARTWRIGHT, William BOWEN, Hugh 
MONTGOMERY and Abe THOMPSON. The commissioners as 
soon as a site was fixed were to effect the removal of records to the <
Many of the old Revolutionary soldiers settled in Rutherford County 
after the admission of Tennessee into the UNION, on grants from 
the State of North Carolina. Among them may be mentioned the 
JONESes, RUTLEDGEs and others. Many of them became pensioners after the passage of the act of Congress, of 1832, for their relief. In the Creek war of 1812-14, related elsewhere, a large number of troops went from Rutherford County, although it is believed no regularly organized company was sent. Col. HENDERSON, who is accredited to this county, was killed in a skirmish near the city of New Orleans. In the second Seminole war, which broke out in 1836, Rutherford County furnished two companies, Capt. YOAKUM's and Robert JETTON's. These men enlisted under the call for 2,500 men to serve for six months. These men were attached to the Second Regiment, which was organized at Fayetteville, about June 16, 1836, by electing William TROUSDALE, 
colonel; J. C. GUILD, lieutenant-colonel; Joseph MEADOWS, first 
major; William WASHINGTON, second major. These two regiments were formed into a brigade, of which Robert ARMSTRONG was elected brigadier-general. The troops left Fayetteville, the place of rendezvous, on July 4, and proceeded direct to Columbus, Ga. The history of this expedition is given under the second Seminole war. In 1846, on the outbreak of the Mexican war, great numbers offered their services to the State and Government. Two political companies from Rutherford tendered their services at once, the one commanded by Capt. MITCHELL, called the Spring Blues, and the other by Capt. CHILDRESS. The latter only was accepted. These men were not accepted till the second call, and consequently did not see very active service. The sentiment of Rutherford was strongly opposed to secession or separation till the climax of the political issues was reached, when the 
people slowly yielded, and in time became earnest supporters of the 
Confederate Government. The first regiment raised in this county for 
the Confederate service was the Second Tennessee Infantry. The 
regiment was composed of ten companies, averaging 120 men each; 
two of these companies, A and F, were from Rutherford County. 
The captains of Company A were S. N. WHITE, John A. BUTLER, Thomas G. BUTLER and James T. C. McKNIGHT. The captains of company F were Thomas D. WHITE, W D. ROBINSON and William H. NEWMAN. At its first organization William B. BATE was chosen colonel; David L. GOODALL, lieutenant-colonel; William R. DOAK, major. The regiment was organized at Nashville, May 5, and was ordered to Virginia. It was mustered into the Confederate service May 12, at Lynchburg, by Gen. E. Kirby SMITH. The field and staff officers were W. B. BATE and W. D. ROBINSON, colonels; D. L. GOODALL and John A. BUTLER, lieutenant-colonels; William R. DOAK, major; T. J. KENNEDY and Alexander ERSKINE, surgeons; J. H. ERSKINE and T. L. B. BROWN, assistant surgeons; Joseph 
CROSS and G. T. HENDERSON, chaplains; M. W. CLUSKEY and W. H. RHEA, quartermasters; W. T. DRIVER and W. J. HALE, adjutants. The complete account of this regiment is given in the State history. The credit of raising the Eighteenth Regiment is due largely to Gen. J. B. PALMER, of Murfreesboro. At the outbreak of hostilities Maj. PALMER, as he as then called, was engaged in the practice of law at Murfreesboro, and was a man very much opposed to secession, a doctrine which he opposed with all his force and logic. He said, however, if the worst came to the worst he was withhis native State. The determination of Maj. PALMER to volunteer led a vast number of his neighbors and companions to enlist with him.  The following companies were raised, principally in Rutherford County: Maj. Palmer's own company, B G. WOODS' company and B. F. WEBB's company. The history of this regiment is best told in the language of Gen. PALMER himself. The regiment was organized on the 11th of June, 1861, at Camp Trousdale, Tennessee, by the election of J. B. PALMER colonel, A G. CARDEN,  lieutenant-colonel, S W. DAVIS, major. It contained ten companies, commanded respectively by Capt. M. R. RUSHING, J. W. 
ROSCOE, William R. BUTLER, H. J. St. JOHN, G. H. LOWE, B. F. WEBB, J. B. MATTHEWS, B. G. WOODS, A. G. CARDEN and W. J. GRAYSON. Col. PALMER's staff consisted of R. P. CROCKETT, quartermaster, with rank of captain; Thomas WOOD, commissary, with same rank; Dr. John PATTERSON, surgeon; J. W. GOWAN, assistant surgeon; James W. ROSCOE, adjutant, with the rank of first lieutenant; James S. BAXTER, sergeant-major. 
The first battle in which the regiment participated was at Fort 
Donelson, where after much suffering, hard and gallant fighting, it, with the garrison and army under command of Gen.FLOYD, was captured on February 16, 1862. Col. PALMER and other field officers were imprisoned at Fort Warren, Boston, Harbor. The staff and company officers were confined at Johnson's Island, Lake Erie, and the privates at Camp Douglas, Illinois. All the men and officers were exchanged in September, 1862, when the regiment was reorganized by an act of the Confederate Congress. J. B. PALMER was again elected colonel; W B. BUTLER, lieutenant-colonel; W. H. JOYNER, major; John W. DOUGLAS, adjutant. This reorganization took place September 26, 1862, at Jackson, Miss. This regiment from the beginning to the close of the war belonged to the famous command known at part of the time as 
BROWN's, and subsequently as PALMER's brigade; by its latter name it was surrendered at Goldsboro, N. C., May 2, 1865, on the terms agreed upon by Gens. Joe E. JOHNSTON and William T. SHERMAN. As a regiment, it was commanded by its first colonel, 
PALMER, till his promotion to the rank of brigadier-general in 1864. The Eighteenth participated in the great battles of Fort Donelson, Murfreesboro (Stones River), Chickamauga, Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge. It participated in all the engagements in the Atlanta campaign. It made the campaign into Tennessee after the fall of Atlanta, doing active service at all points. After the defeat of Gen. John B. HOOD before Nashville, this was one of the regiments of PALMER's brigade which, with other choice troops, covered HOOD's retreat from Middle Tennessee across the Tennessee River. This rear guard was under Maj.-Gen. WALTHALL, the ranking officer, and consisted of his own division and brigades of Gens. PALMER and FEATHERSTON and some cavalry forces. After this PALMER's brigade was ordered to 
North Carolina under Gen. JOHNSTON, under whose direction the 
battle of Bentonville, in that State, was fought. In this fight PALMER's brigade was made the directing column, and it distinguished itself so highly as to be handsomely complimented by Gen. STEVENSON, the division commander, in a "general order".  This was the last fight of the Eighteenth. The regiment was discharged in May, 1865, which closed its arduous and brilliant career of patriotic duty and service for a period of a little more than four memorable years. At the battle of Murfreesboro Gen. PALMER, then colonel, was wounded three times; in the celebrated Breckinridge fight on January 2, 1863. He received a Mini- 
ball through the calf of the leg, one through the shoulder, and a shell 
wound on the right knee, thought he did not leave the field till the 
close of the engagement, and then brought off his regiment in good 
order. He was next severely wounded at Chickamauga, from which 
he has never recovered. He was also slightly wounded at Jonesboro 
and at Bentonville. The Twentieth Tennessee Regiment was known as Battle's regiment, and was organized at Camp Trousdale near the 
Kentucky line. Joel A. BATTLE was elected colonel; M. B. CARTER, lieutenant-colonel; Patrick DUFFIE, major; Dr. D. B. CLIFF, surgeon; J. H. MORTON, assistant surgeon, John MARSHALL, quartermaster; M. M. HINKLE, commissary; Alex WINN, adjutant; John EDMONSON, chaplain. The only company from Rutherford in the regiment was Company E. John S. GOOCH was elected captain of the company at the age of nineteen, and was severely wounded at Fishing Creek. At the reorganization of the army in May, Capt. GOOCH was elected lieutenant-colonel at the age of twenty. Col. T. B. SMITH, of the regiment was only twenty-two. Col. GOOCH was compelled to resign in a short time, and as succeeded by F. M. LAVENDER. On the promotion of Col. GOOCH, William RIDLEY was chosen captain of Company E, and remained with the company during its term of service. Capt. RIDLEY received a severe scalp wound at Missionary Ridge; Lieut. CROSSWAITE was killed at Murfreesboro, and Lieut. PEYTON at Chickamauga. A full history of the regiment is given elsewhere. 
Many other companies and parts of companies were recruited in 
Rutherford County, but their history is closely interwoven with other 
regiments. The battle of Murfreesboro began December 31, 1862, 
and ended January 2, 1863. The Confederate forces numbering about 35,000 men were under the command of Gen. BRAGG, whose right was under Gen. BRECKINRIDGE, center under Gen. POLK, and left under Gen. HARDEE. The Federals according to commander ROSECRANS,  numbered 27,977 infantry, 3,200 cavalry and 2,223 artillery. ROSECRANS' right confronting HARDEE, was commanded by Gen. McCOOK, the center by Gen. George H. THOMAS, opposite POLK, and the left, opposite BRECKINRIDGE, was commanded by Gen. T. L. CRITTENDEN. BRAGG anticipating ROSECRANS' intention of attacking his own right, hurled HARDEE with irresistible force upon McCOOK, ROSECRANS' right, and crushed it. By night ROSECRANS had lost, including stragglers, one-fourth his army and a large portion of his artillery. His right wing was almost at right angles to its position in the morning, but it had been so strengthened as to be impossible to drive it further. The battle so far had been largely in favor of the Confederates. January 1 was a day of comparative quiet except occasional artillery duel and some skirmishing. On January 2 skirmishing opened about 8 o'clock and grew warmer as the day advanced; the tide rolled toward the right. At about 3 P. M. the picket firing began, which was the signal for the celebrated charge made by BRECKINRIDGE on the right. Perhaps no more gallant charge is recorded in history than this one led by BRECKINRIDGE and his gallant subordinates. They swept everything before them, crossed the river and seemed ready to crush ROSECRANS' left, as had been done by his right, but he had skillfully massed fifty-eight pieces of artillery heavily supported by infantry. Upon this unseen enemy the troops rushed, but were compelled to fall back with much loss. The night was passed with anxious watching, the following day BRAGG slowly began to fall back, leaving the field in the hands of the Federals. BRAGG's 
loss was reported by him at 10,000; ROSECRANS' loss was 1,533 
killed, 7,245 wounded, besides 6,273 prisoners. On the ground where the battle was fought is now a National cemetery, where were gathered the dead bodies from the various points and buried there. The number thus buried amount to about 6,000. Near Murfreesboro is a Confederate cemetery, where now sleep 2,000 Confederate soldiers. 
The city of Murfreesboro was founded by an act of the General Assembly passed October 17, 1811, although no lots were purchased nor houses erected until in June, 1812. The town was originally called Cannonsburg, in honor of Gov. CANNON, but by an act of November 19, 1811, amendatory to the act of October 17, 1811, the name was changed to "Murfreesboro." This name was given in honor of Col. Hardy MURFREE, who was a Revolutionary soldier and held lands in the vicinity under military grant from North Carolina. His claim as well as many others, were signed by Richard Dobbs SPAIGHT, Esq., our governor, captain-general, and commander-in-chief;" such an array it would seem would make the title perfect. As is elsewhere mentioned, Joel CHILDRESS, Joel DYER, John M. TILFORD, Abraham THOMPSON, CARMICHAEL, B. SANAWAY and Blackman COLEMAN, were appointed commissioners (aldermen) of Murfreesboro. These constituted the first town board or council, the former commissioners having nothing to do with the government. The above act as repealed, September 28, 1815, and seven commissioners were chosen by the people. Previous to this, November 5, 1813, the 
election precinct at Black Fox Camp was ordered moved to Murfreesboro. On November 19, 1813, all money in the hands of the commissioners from the sale of lots, after paying these expenses, was ordered turned over to the town board for the benefit of the town. The act incorporating the town of Murfreesboro passed the General Assembly October 17, 1817. It was declared that the citizens of the town of Murfreesboro, of the county of Rutherford and the State of Tennessee were a body corporate and politic with authority to sue and be sued, etc. The town was organized with a mayor and aldermen. Annual elections were ordered to be called by the sheriff of the first Monday in January. On October 13, 1818, Isaac HILLIARD and Mary MOORE, his wife, of Halifax County, N. C., legatees of Col. Hardy MURFREE, deeded Lots 46 to 70 inclusive, except Lots. 53 and 65, to the "Citizens, owners and Occupiers of certain Lotts or parcels of land" in the town of Murfreesboro. This was done for a love of the people of the place, a desire to make their titles perfect and for the remembrance of Col.MURFREE in the name. On December 26, 1837, Isaac HILLIARD's enlargement was incorporated, containing Lots 1 to 24 
inclusive. A further addition was made to the city January 10, 1851. On December 6, 1860, Bennett SMITH deeded a lot near the Presbyterian Church to the city. On December 12, 1865, the city limits were extended three-quarters of a mile from the Public Square. Town officers: The first town officers elected were Joshua HASKELL, mayor, but he resigned and David WENDEL was chosen in his place; Burrell GANNAWAY, Nicholas TILFORD, T. C. WATKINS, William BARFIELD, Charles NILES and G. A. SUBLETT, aldermen; William LEDBETTER, recorder; Benjamin BLANKENSHIP, town constable. Other mayors, David WENDEL, 1819; Robert PURDY, 1820; Henry HOLMES, 1821; William R. RUCKER, 1822-23; John JONES, 1824; William LEDBETTER, 1825; S. R. RUCKER, 1826; William 
LEDBETTER, 1827; John SMITH, 1828; Edward FISHER, 1829; 
John SMITH, 1830; John C. MOORE, 1831; Charles READY, 1832; Charles NILES, 1833; Marman SPENCE, 1834-35; Edward FISHER, 1836; L. H. CARNEY, 1837; E. A. KEEBLE, 1838; Edward FISHER, 1839; G. A. SUBLETT, 1840; B. W. FARMER, 1841-42; H. YOAKUM, 1843; Wilson THOMAS, 1844; B. W. FARMER, 1845-46; John LEIPER, 1847-48; Charles READY, 1849-53; F. HENRY, 1854; E A KEEBLE, 1855; Joseph B. PALMER, 1856-59; John W. BURTON, 1860-61; J. E. DROMGOOLE, 1862; * * * R. D. REED, 1865-55; Charles READY, 1867; E. L. JORDAN, 1868-69; T. B. DARRACH, 1870; J A. JANUARY, 1871; J. B. COLLIER, 1872-73; Dr. J. B.  MURFREE, 1874-75; H. H. KERR, 1876; H. H. CLAYTON, 1877; N. C. COLLIER, 1878-79; J. C. CLAYTON, 1880-84; E. F. BURTON, 1882-83; J. M. OVERALL, 1885-85, H. E.PALMER, 1886. Police officers: A. G. MILLER, City Marshal; G. W. MYERS, R. E. BEARD and R. M. NELSON. The town as originally surveyed by Hugh ROBINSON, contained seventy lots each 150 feet square, being numbered from the northwest corner to 
the northeast from one to twelve inclusive. The Legislature passed 
eighteen rules and regulations to govern the town while under the first 
town board. In 1815 the General Assembly passed an act for the relief of the seven commissioners of Murfreesboro against any claims that might arise against them while they were discharging their official duties. Capt. William LYTLE built a mill, blacksmith shop and afterward a cotton-gin near Murfreesboro in 1808. The first house was built within the corporate limits of the town in 1811. A. CARMICHAEL built the first tavern in Murfreesboro near the "Pump Spring." Col. Joel DYER moved his tavern from Jefferson to Murfreesboro in 1812; this building stood till burned in 1854. Col. Robert JETTON built a tavern on South Main Street of cedar logs, that stood till burned in 1853. J. RENSHAW also built a tavern near the southeast corner of the Public Square. PORTER & SPENCE moved their dry goods store from Jefferson to Murfreesboro in 1813. The town was now growing rapidly. A public warehouse was built near the creek on Main Street in 1813. All cotton and tobacco had to be placed in some one of the three houses in the county for inspection before sale. W. A. SUBLETT and L. MATHEWS were made inspectors in 1813. The fees for opening and recooperage was about $1.50 per hogshead for tobacco and cotton in a similar ratio. 
On November 15, 1817, J. HASKELL deeded Lots 71 and 72 to 
Bradley Academy. In 1818 the market house was built, which, with some improvement stood till destroyed by the soldiers. Hugh CABELL was made sealer of weights and measures for the town and county. The rates fixed were for a bushel measure 50 cents; pecks, 15 cents; half peck, 12-1/2 cents; gallon, half gallon and two quarts, 25 cents. In 1818 the town well was ordered begun, but was not finished till 1824; owing to a destructive fire all wooden chimneys were ordered pulled down, and brick or stone substituted instead. Also a fire-watch of twelve men were put on duty. The SUBLETTs were allowed $98 for printing the town ordinances in 1818. Stumps were ordered removed from the streets. Few buildings at this time were adorned with paint. The first brick house erected in town was built this year by John M. TELFORD, west of where the present National Bank now stands. Drs. W. R. RUCKER, James MANEY, Henry HOLMES, J. KING and L. P. YANDELL were distinguished early practitioners. Lawyers - S. H. LAUGHLIN, Samuel ANDERSON, S. R. RUCKER, W. BRADY, Andrew CHILDRESS, J. R. MARTIN, Charles READY, John BRUCE, John HASKELL, P. W. HUMPHREYS and I. H. BUTE. Visiting attorneys - Rob BUTLER, John BELL, J. H. EATON, Andrew 
JACKSON and Felix GRUNDY. Merchants - David WENDEL, Joe SPENCE, HILL, SNELL & Co., M. SPENCE, Silas LOIK, C. O'FLYNN, C. R. ABBOTT, FALLS & Christy, David LINEAU, John SMITH, J. C. MOORE & Co., J. CURRIN, Benjamin ELDER and Charles GUGGER. Saddlers - Charles NILES, W. GARDNER, A. S. & J. DAVIDSON. Tailors - Reuben BOLLES, Peter CAMPBELL, Samuel PARRISH, Samuel JONES. Hatters - Alfred MILLER, A. STALLER, Christopher HIST. Cabinet-makers - James CRICHLOW, Ed FISHER, Samuel PATTON. Chair-makers - E. A. COCHRAN, Isaac C. BROWN Carpenters - Capt. J. JONES, George ANDERSON, J. McDERMOTT. Blacksmiths - William GILLIAM, John KENNEDY, William BLANTON, P. PARKER. Boot and 
shoe-makers - Willis BARKER, B. KENNEDY, J. JONES. Tanners - V. COWAN, Rob JETTON, J. BONE. Wagon-makers  - William R. ICEMEYER, J. D. SCRAPE.  Tinner - Lewis SPERRY. Tavern- keepers - James VAUGHN, R. SMITH, Gen. Robert PURDY, W. C. EMMETT. Gunsmiths - Ed ELAM, George BALTES. Brick and Plasterers - J. FLETCHER, T. MONTAGUE. Jewelers - A. LIDDON, who made the county seal, and W. MANCHESTER. Milliners - Mrs. A. STALLER, Miss S. WARREN. Wool-carder - Isaac C. BROWN. 
The first General Assembly met in Knoxville May 28, 1797, and continued to meet there till 1813, when it changed to Nashville and remained till September 15, 1815, at which time it again assembled at Knoxville, but was changed to Murfreesboro September 19, 1819. It 
continued to meet at Murfreesboro till early in January, 1826, since 
which time its sessions have been in Nashville. The bill for fixing a 
permanent seat of government was called up October 4, 1843. The 
vote at the third reading in the House stood: Yeas, 40; nays, 34. In the Senate, on motion of Senator W. H. SNEED, for Rutherford and Williamson Counties, the vote on the question of locating the state capital at Murfreesboro stood eleven for and fourteen against. On reconsideration October 10, 1843, the bill was carried in favor of Nashville. During the session while in Murfreesboro the Assembly met 
in the court house, the representatives using the lower floor and the senators the upper floor. A call session was held August, 1822, 
but the court house having been burned, the session was held in the 
Presbyterian Church; the lower house met on the first floor and the 
Senate in the gallery. On the assembly of the Legislature at this place, Gov. McMINN took his seat as governor, and James McDOWELL was elected doorkeeper. During the session of 1823 Gen. William BRADY was chosen speaker of the House. The acts were printed on a press owned by the State. This was brought from Nashville, and the work was done in a house on College Street. The year 1823 marked 
the first appearance of a "Dutchman" - HOFFMAN by name - into the town. He was a baker by trade, and the novelty of the man was as 
great as the ginger cakes he sold.  Another historic character of this period was Peter JENNINGS, a free negro, who had served during 
the Revolutionary war, and for such service was awarded a pension. 
At this period Murfreesboro afforded two military companies, one of seventy-five men, the Murfreesboro Volunteers, commanded by Capt. G S CROCKETT; the other, the Murfreesboro Sentinels, commanded by Capt. Russel DANCE, afterward by J. C. ABBOT, and still later 
by Capt. John CHILDRESS. The former company took part in the reception given to Gen. LAFAYETTE at Nashville in 1825. A great semi-centennial celebration was held July 4, 1826, at Murfree's Spring under the auspices of the Sentinels, there was a parade by the company, and speeches made by M. ROOKER and others. A committee visited the Hermitage, and invited the hero of New Orleans to visit here in 
Murfreesboro on January 15, 1828, the thirteenth anniversary of the battle of New Orleans. The invitation was accepted. Dr. William R 
RUCKER was president on this occasion, and G A. SUBLETT, 
vice-president. Great preparations were made, and a large and 
enthusiastic assembly greeted him. A magnificent banquet was spread, and the beauty and chivalry of the place did honor to the occasion. Thirteen regular toasts were drank, and responded to with grace; twenty-four additional were offered. A poem was prepared and read 
for the occasion. "There was a sound of revelry by night," and the reception closed with a magnificent ball. At this time the population of Murfreesboro was 955, and the revenues for the town was $355.81. 
In 1831 the Washington Cotton Factory was started by Mr. LOWERY; this had a horse head-wheel for motive power. From the success of this a new company was formed, consisting of Messrs. MASTERSON, CHRISTY, LOWERY & JOHNSON. A large second-hand engine and machinery was placed in position, the whole at a cost of about $25,000. It was an unfortunate financial investment. It soon passed into the hands of Dr. James MANEY, then to --- & WATSON, next to MOORE & COX, and then to FIELD for $4,000. William Somerhall purchased the entire business for $1,500. In 1833 a report was made to the city council on the feasibility of establishing a system of water-works. A 
favorable report was made and the estimated cost was $1,000. It was proposed to raise the water from the Sand Spring in large tubs, to be conveyed to the top of Capitol Hill upon a wooden railway; the same to be elevated by horse-power. The water was to be led from Capitol Hill, by cedar tubes, into an air-tight tank in the court-yard square; thence, 
by hydrants, to the places of business. The work was completed and 
the Rose Water-Works were set in operation. After a short time they were found to be a failure. The first drug store was started by H. H. TREADAWAY, on the east side of the square, in 1837; another was soon after started by AVENT & CARNEY, which was afterward 
sold to J. H.NELSON. The first grocery store was started by Jacob DECKER in 1837; a large carriage factory was started the same year by H.OSBORN & Co. Other jewelers than those mentioned were F. 
William ROULET and J. LUKINS. In 1850 a new drug store was 
started by John McDERMOTT; a hardware and grocery store, by 
John C. SPENCE; a book store, by R. D. REED; a second book 
store was owned by CRAIG & FLETCHER, which was sold to 
FOWLER & DAVIS. The livery stables at this time were owned by 
TODD & CARNAHAN, TODD & BARKLEY. A carriage shop 
was run by R. & S. SMITH. The Cedar Bucket Factory was started 
by J. C. SPENCE in 1854. The Rio Mills were erected in 1855 by 
W. S. HUGGINS & Co. The building was a large four-story brick, 
and was run by two twenty-five horse-power engines, and had a 
capacity of about 200 barrels of flour per day. The whole cost about 
$25,000. These mills were sold to William SPENCE, who, in 1860, 
added a distillery, and at this place fed many hogs. These mills were 
used by the armies during the war and were greatly damaged. 1855 
was noted for the great fire in this city, in which the City Hotel, as 
well as many other buildings, was burned. The first gas-works were 
built in this city in 1857. Mains were laid and the business was started 
by making gas from resin oil and cotton seed, but, the war interfering, the matter was not fully tested. The war made Murfreesboro a great military camp. The troops enlisted were usually sent to Camp Trousdale for instruction. The first appearance of Federals in the place was March 7, 1862, and on the 10th Gen.MITCHELL took formal possession of the place. July 13, 1862, he made his celebrated raid upon the town, capturing a large number of prisoners. This strange coincident occurred during the engagement:  In the attack upon Mancy Springs 21 Federals were killed and no Confederates; in the attack upon the court house 23 Confederates were killed and no Federals; in the fight at the river 2 on each side were killed. After the battle of Stone River the city was again in the hands of Federals, they having taken possession January 4, 1863. 
All the churches and the colleges were used as hospitals for the sick and wounded, first by the Confederate, afterward by the Federal Army. In 1866 the Cedar Bucket Factory passed into the hands of  the Stones River Utility Works. It was started in the old cotton factory, but has since moved to its present building. April 15, 1869, marks the era of the "great fire," in which a large number of business houses were destroyed. 
Business of 1870: 
A. CROCKET; and Planters, W. A. RAPP. Dry goods - ROSENTHAL & Bro., T. C. GOODRICH, E. ROSENFELD, W. SMITH, J. ALLEN, MILES & McKINLEY, RICH & WRIGHT, EAGLETON & BYRN, TOBIAS & BRO. and A. G. ROSENFELD. Drug stores - J. McDERMOTT, J. W. NELSON and William WENDEL. Bakers and confectioners - H. RAYMOND, G. S. McFADDEN and H. OSBORN. Saddlers and harness-makers - John KELLEY, MOSBY & Co. and J. H. BOEHMS. Grocers - L. BURGSDORF, LANE & CRICHLOW, J. S. McFADDEN, J. I. C. HAYNES, Henry ELLIOTT, James TOMPKINS, COLLIER & EAGLETON, JAMES & COLLIER, R. N. RANSOM.

Thanks to Kay Pacheco for providing this information
"Rutherford County-History of Tennessee", by Goodspeed
Jane Colmenares - County Coordinator
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