Location: Wilson County TN

Chickasaw Burial Customs

The Chickasaw lived in the hilly country north of the Choctaw, and although of the same stock they were ever enemies. Many of their customs differed and instead of the elaborate burial ceremonies of the Choctaw, “They bury their dead almost the moment the breath is out of the body, in the very spot under the couch on which the deceased died, and the nearest relations woeful lamentations; the women are very vociferous in it, but the men do it in silence, taking great care not to be seen any more than heard at this business; the mourning continues about a year, which they know by counting the moons, they are every morning and evening, and at first throughout the day at different times, employed in the exercise of this last duty.” More details of the ceremony were recorded by Adair, who was well acquainted with the manners and customs of the Chickasaw, having traded among them for many years. According to his narrative: “When any of their. people die at home, they wash and anoint the corpse, and soon bring it out of doors,after a short eulogium, and space of mourning, they carry him three times around the house in which he is to be interred, stopping half a minute each time.” The excavation was described as being clean inside, and after the body had been deposited within...

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Biographical Sketch of Joseph Martin Lynch

(See Grant and Adair)-Joseph Martin Lynch, born July 30, 1881, educated in Male Seminary and Cumberland University, Lebanon, Tennessee, graduating from the Law Department of the latter, but refused to take the Tennessee bar examination because Negroes were included in the class. Elected Register of Deeds of Adair County, September 17, 1807. He married Hazel Capitola Mason. He served for several years as attorney for the Interior Department and on November 8, 1919, refused the appointment of Register of the United States Treasury, because it would be impossible for him to take his aged father from his home and friends and he would not leave him. Mr. Lynch’s great-great-grandfather, Joseph Martin, a native of Albermarle County, Virginia, was elected Major in the Revolutionary Army, February 17, 1779, and promoted to a Lieutenant Colonelcy in March, 1781. He was elected Brigadier General of the North Carolina militia, December 15, 1787, and was commissioned Brigadier General of the 20th Brigade of Virginia militia by Governor “Light Horse Harry” Lee on December 11, 1793. His son John Martin, was a member of the Constitutional Convention of 1827, and was the first Chief Justice and first treasurer of the Cherokee Nation. Mr. Lynch’s grandfather, Joseph Martin Lynch, was a delegate from the Cherokee Nation to Washington in 1839, and was elected Senator from Delaware District August 2, 1842. Mr. Lynch’s father, Cicero Leonidas...

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Biography of Charles Baird Stark

Charles Baird Stark, one of the ablest lawyers of Missouri, whose ability is combined with a high sense of duty and professional honor, was born in Springfield, Robertson county, Tennessee, June 13, 1854. He is a son of Joseph Carter Stark, and a grandson of John Stark, who was born in Virginia and removed to Tennessee in 1812. He was a planter and was the only one of a line of Starks that was not a lawyer, back to a John Stark, who was admitted to the bar, in Glasgow, Scotland, in 1665. In the possession of Charles B. Stark, is a silver snuff-box that was owned by James Stark of Scotland, and is of a remarkably artistic design and engraving. It is inscribed with the date, 1743, and bears the family motto “Fortiorum Fortia facts,” and the insignia of a bull’s head. He also possesses ancient razors and many other heirlooms which he prizes most highly. The grandfather of General John Stark, who commanded the American forces in the Battle of Bennington in 1777, was in the direct ancestral line of Charles B. Stark. They have been a family of lawyers and military men. One of them, Jeremiah Stark, lost an arm by an Indian’s arrow in the French and Indian war. He was the father of five sons who served in the Revolutionary war. The grandfather, John...

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Biography of Hon. John A. Fuson

Hon. John A. Fuson, an eminent practicing physician and surgeon of the Fourth District, was born in 1815, in Champaign County, Ohio. He is the third of seven children (three living) of James and Martha (Sneed) Fuson, both of whom were natives of Patrick County, Virginia. The father was of English descent, born in 1792. Two years after marriage he moved to Champaign County, Ohio, where he engaged in farming, occasionally preaching. He died in 1863. The mother was of French origin, born about 1795, and died in 1885. The subject of this sketch received a limited education in the common schools of his native county, remaining with his parents until he was twenty-two, when he came to Tennessee, and settled at Alexandria, Dekalb County, where for three years he studied medicine under direction of Dr. Thomas J. Sneed, at the expiration of which time he began practicing at Liberty, in 1842. In 1847 he married Martha L., Daughter of John W. and Lucy W. (Flowers) Allen, near Rome, Smith County. Mrs Fuson was born in White County, in 1826, and became mother of eleven children. The eight surviving ones are James; Lucy Jane,Wife of Chas. McCaverty of West Virginia; John A.; Elizabeth, Wife of Isaac N. Fite; George M.; Wm. Francis; Josephine, Wife of Chas. Williams, and Joseph Benjamin. In 1856 the Doctor purchased a farm in the...

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Biography of H.D. Foust

H. D. Foust, of Foust & Jones, carriage manufacturers at Alexandria, was born in Wilson County in 1845, a son of William E. and Betsey (Luster) Foust. The father, born in Wilson County about 1818, was the son of William Foust, a native of Germany. William E. was married in 1844, and was all his life a blacksmith and carriage manufacturer in his native county. He was sheriff of the county four terms. The mother was born in the same county about 1829, and both were members of the Missionary Baptist Church. Educated at Lebanon, our subject at fifteen entered Company A, in the Forty-fifth Tennessee Infantry, and operated in the extreme South for about eighteen months, when, under the conscription act, he was rejected on account of age. He then returned home, and soon after joined Gen Forrest’s command, and afterward Gen. Morgan’s on his Indiana and Ohio raid, but was captured on reaching the Ohio River. He was soon recaptured, and went home and south to join Gen. Wheeler at Dalton, Ga., with who he remained until his surrender at Raleigh, N. C., and then returned home. In December 1865, he married Catherine, daughter of W. A. Robinson of Lebanon, where she was born in 1844. Their six children are living: William E., Jr., Bettie, Henry D., Malinda, John L. and Etta. Mrs. Foust, died in 1880,...

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Biography of Hon. J.J. Ford

Hon. J. J. Ford, attorney at law, was born in Dekalb (then Smith) County November 22, 1822. He is one of ten children of Daniel and Mary (Fite) Ford, the former of Irish origin. The father, born about 1794 in South Carolina, was the son of Daniel Ford, Sr., of Virginia, who became one of the earliest settlers of Tennessee, when Daniel, Jr., was but a small boy. He settled in Smith County near what is now Temperance Hall, where he remained until his death. With ordinary education in his youth, Daniel, Jr., married about 1818 and spent his life in Smith and Dekalb Counties. He was an able man and served as magistrate and constable several years. He died in 1864. The mother, a native of Tennessee and of Dutch decent, died in 1836. She was a daughter of Rev. J. Fite, an early Tennessee settler from New Jersey, who spent the early years of his settlement in a cane tent on Smith Fork, and who with his brother cut a road through the cane to Nashville. He made some money by dealing in the skin and flesh of bears. He was a Baptist minister for nearly sixty years and a historic character of early Tennessee. With no educational advantages our subject began the blacksmith trade when fifteen years old, and, when of age, purchased the property of...

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Biography of James A. Donnell

James A. Donnell,United States commissioner of internal revenue for the middle district of Tennessee, and an influential citizen of Alexandria, was born August 13, 1834, in Wilson County. He is the eldest of two children of Allan and Casandria H. (Britton) Donnell. The father was a native of Gifford County, N. C., born in 1806, of Irish ancestry, a son of Adlia Donnell, a native of North Carolina, whose father came from Ireland. Allan came to Tennessee about 1832, and a year later married and located in Lebanon, where for some time he taught school, afterward engaging in the mercantile business at the same place, then at Center Hill and finally at Commerce, where he died in 1838. He was a man of ability and influence, successful in all his undertakings. His wife was a daughter of Lanie Britton, a native of East Tennessee, and an early settler of Smith County. Mrs. Donnell was born in 1813 and died in 1876. Both were members of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, highly respected by the entire community. The subject of this sketch was educated in the common schools in Wilson County. At the age of twenty he went to Missouri, where for two years he engaged in farming and stock rising. He returned to Wilson County. At the outbreak of the civil war, he enlisted in Company A, Seventh Tennessee Infantry,...

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Biography of Hon. John B. Robinson

Hon. John B. Robinson, attorney at law of Smithville, is a native of Dekalb County; was born in 1835. His parents were Alexander and Rachel (Barnes) Robinson. The father was of English descent, born in Cumberland County, Va., about 1804. He came to Tennessee in 1824, locating in Smith (now Dekalb) County. Two years later he settled in the Fourth District. He taught school several sessions and then married. He was surveyor of the county a number of years. He owned 150 acres of fine land at the time of his death in 1867. His wife was born in Dekalb County, in 1804. Her parents, George and Bridget Barnes, were among the pioneers, settling in the county before 1800. Mr. and Mrs. Robinson had nine children, six of whom are living, our subject being the fourth. He was educated in the common schools. There were no public schools and his parents were unable to send him to college. After he attained his majority he began teaching, which he followed for several years. The last sessions he was in Illinois. In 1855 he commenced the study of law on his own responsibility, but advising with Judge Robert Cantrell, now of Lebanon. In 1858 he was admitted to the bar. When the war broke out he became one of the boys in blue. In June 1862, he enlisted in Company I,...

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Biographical Sketch of James T. Quarels

James T. Quarels was born in Wilson County in 1836, the fourth of seven children of William and Eliza (Hopkins) Quarels, both of whom were natives of Virginia, where they were married about 1835. They came to Tennessee, locating in Wilson County, where the remainder of their lives was spent in farming. The father died about 1844, the mother in 1881, both esteemed members of the Methodist Episcopal Church South. Our subject was educated in the country schools of his native county. About his twentieth year he married a native of Dekalb County, Miss Caroline, daughter of Jonathan and Priscilla Doss, who died about a year and a half after the marriage. In 1860 Mr. Quarels married his sister-in-law, Miss Darthula, by whom he had six children. Those living are Nora (wife of T. C. Peck, of Wilson County), James D., Zora, and Maud. In 1861 Mr. Quarels entered the Confederate Army under command of Capt. Bass, and served about one year, when he was discharged on account of disability, and returned home. In 1863 he again enlisted under Capt. Reese. He was engaged in the battles of Murfreesboro and Briston; after six months’ service he again went home. In 1864 he sold his property in Wilson County and purchased a portion of his present farm in Dekalb County, where he moved. The farm now contains over 100 acres...

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Biography of S.B. Prichard

S. B. Prichard, a respected agriculturist of the Nineteenth District, was born in Wilson County in 1820. He is the third of eight children of Benjamin and Mary A. (Campbell) Prichard. The father was born April 16, 1792, in Virginia and came to the portion of Tennessee now known as Dekalb County in 1808. He was in Col. James Tubb’s regiment, under command of Gen. Jackson, at New Orleans. His death was caused by rheumatism, which he contracted during the war. The exposure was very great. He made his way home from New Orleans on foot, his only provisions until he reached the first settlement being one quart of parched meal; after that was consumed he happened to come across a squirrel, which he brought down with his gun. He and his companion endured all sorts of hardships and privations. He died August 3, 1872. His grandfather Prichard came from England to Virginia at an early day. Mrs. Mary (Campbell) Prichard was born March 10, 1796, in Wilson County, and died December 5, 1867. Her grandfather was a native of Ireland; he settled in Wilson County not far from Statesville when the country was an unbroken canebrake. He ran away from Ireland, agreeing to let the captain hire him out, when he reached America, to pay his passage, and accordingly he was engaged by a Mr. Campbell. The young...

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Biography of Thomas Murray Pierce

Thomas Murray Pierce, a man of splendid professional qualifications and of high social standing in St. Louis, is practicing at the bar as a member of the firm of Jourdan, Rassieur & Pierce and is also vice president and general counsel of the Terminal Railway Association, of which at one time he served as president. He was born in Union City, Tennessee, July 18, 1877. His father, Rice A. Pierce. also a native of that state, is a representative of an old Tennessee family of Welsh lineage that was founded in America by Rice Pierce, who came to the new world in 1777 with a Welsh regiment for service in the Revolutionary war. He remained, however, a resident of the new world and in 1812 served with the American forces at Norfolk, Virginia, and held the rank of colonel in the army. He originally settled in North Carolina and for many generations the family lived in the south. His namesake, Rice A. Pierce, father of Thomas M. Pierce, is a prominent lawyer of Union City, Tennessee, and served as a member of congress from the ninth congressional district of that state for more than twenty years, figuring very prominently in both state and national politics. At the time of the Civil war he joined the Confederate forces under General Nathan Bedford Forrest and was on active duty throughout the period...

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Biography of Leroy Adams

LEROY ADAMS. This gentleman is regarded as one of the most enterprising pioneers of his district, and it is a pleasure to chronicle here the events that mark his life as one of usefulness. Material wealth must not exclude the riches of character and ability in recounting the virtues which have been brought to this country by its citizens, and among its most precious treasures must be estimated the lives of those citizens who have by their intelligence and their eminence in the higher walks of life assisted in raising the standard of life and thought in the communities in which they have settled. Mr. Adams was born in Wilson County, middle Tennessee, about 1812 or 1814 to the union of William and Ovidia Adams, and is a branch of the old Adams family. He was left fatherless when quite young, and of a family of seven children, he is the only one now living. In 1833, when a lad of about seventeen years, he took the advice of his father, who had told him before dying to go to a new country and get a home, and he, his mother and two younger sisters made their way to what is now Polk County, then Greene County, Missouri, and settling on a tract of land, remained there until 1838 or 1839. At that date they moved to a farm...

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Biography of Hon. Philetus Averitt

In the Weekly Capital, published in Boise, June 17, 1899, appeared the following sketch of him whose name introduces this article. “Hon. Philetus Averitt was born in Mayfield, Kentucky, thirty-one years ago. He was educated at Bethel College and Cumberland University, and practiced law in his native town for one year. Six years ago he came to St. Anthony, Idaho, and commenced the practice of his profession. In a few years he has built up a first-class practice, and is recognized as an able and painstaking member of the legal profession. In 1896 Mr. Averitt gave his splendid abilities to the organization of the Democratic party of Fremont County, and was made chairman of the county committee. By his careful and able management of the county campaign every man on the Democratic ticket was elected. “In 1898 Mr. Averitt was elected a member of the house of representatives from Fremont County, and early in the session was made the leader of the Democratic and silver-Republican majority in that body. This leadership was maintained by Mr. Averitt throughout the session, in face of strong opposition from brilliant and aspiring young men. He managed the campaign of L. C. Rice for state treasurer, nominating him in the state convention in a remarkably able speech. The magnificent results for Democracy in Fremont County at the last election are largely due to the...

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Biography of Hon. J. J. Smith

Hon. J. J. Smith, an able representative of the Miami bar, who has here practiced his profession since 1915, is specializing in criminal law, in which branch of jurisprudence he has been very successful, and he has also done effective service for the public good as a member of the state senate. He was born June 23, 1889, near Ranger, in Eastland county, Texas, upon the farm of his parents, Benjamin F. and Catherine (Simpson) Smith, the latter also a native of that section of the Lone Star state, while the former was born in Madison county, North Carolina. While residing in North Carolina the father was in the employ of the government, serving as peace and revenue, officer at Asheville and at Mars Hill. From that state he removed to Texas, where he engaged in riding the range, leading the life of a frontiersman. In 1900 he came to Oklahoma, following the occupation of farming in Greer county. He and his wife now reside upon a farm in Beckham county, this, state. His political allegiance has always been given to the democratic party since age conferred upon him the right of franchise, and he has been active in its support, while fraternally he is identified with the Masons. He is an expert marksman and is a typical frontiersman whose life has been spent upon the broad, open ranges....

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Biography of Rev. Joseph Franklin Thompson

Rev. Joseph Franklin Thompson, librarian of the Carnegie Library at Tahlequah and superannuated minister of the Methodist Episcopal church, South, having been retired since 1906, was born May 21, 1841, near Maysville, Arkansas, in what was then the Cherokee Nation, Indian Territory. His parents, both of whom are deceased, were James Allen and Martha (Lynch) Thompson, the former a native of South Carolina and the latter a native of Virginia and a member of an old Cherokee family there. Mr. and Mrs. Thompson were married in Georgia and came to Beattie’s Prairie in 1838, with a detachment of Cherokees under Richard Taylor, superintendent of the Cherokee Nation. The father engaged in farming and in the conduct of a mercantile establishment there, achieving more than substantial success. He died in January, 1876. His wife passed away in October, 1872. Six sons and five daughters were born to their union, Joseph Franklin, whose name initiates this review, being the youngest child. In the acquirement of an education Joseph Franklin Thompson attended the schools of the Cherokee Nation and in due time enrolled as a student in the Tahlequah Male Seminary, graduating from the Cumberland University at Lebanon, Tennessee, in 1861, with the A. B. degree. After leaving school he enlisted for service in the Civil war and served as Sergeant Major for some time, receiving constant promotion until he became Lieutenant...

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