Joseph G. Tipton, one of the leading citizens and merchants of Tiptonville, is the son of William and Eliza (Gallaher) Tipton. His father was born in East Tennessee, though raised in Franklin County; from there he moved to Tipton County, and finally to Texas, where he enlisted as a soldier, and received for his services a patent to a tract of land. He then returned to Tennessee, and married Miss Gallaher, a native of Missouri, and they settled in what is now Lake County, and lived there until their death. They had six children, three now living. Mr. Tipton in early life was a merchant, then a farmer, and a Democrat in politics. Mrs. Tipton was a devout Methodist; she died in 1860, and he died in 1870. The town of Tiptonville takes its name from him. Mr. Joe Tipton, on his father’s side, was of English descent; three brothers originally came from England and settled in Maryland. On his mother’s side he was French, Welsh and Irish. In 1861, he volunteered in the Madrid Bend Guards, of the Fifteenth Tennessee Infantry (C. E.) and continued with them until the surrender; was wounded at Shiloh and Jonesboro, Ga. and was captured but once making his escape two hours afterward.
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Mr. Tipton was born November 10, 1842, in what is now Lake County, and educated there. In 1866 he graduated at Jones’ Commercial College at St. Louis, then commenced in the mercantile business at Tiptonville. After clerking six years, he opened a store of his own, and has since enjoyed a liberal patronage. He has one of the best business houses and stocks of goods in the town and owns 441 acres of land.
In 1873 Mr. Tipton married Harriet W. Meriwether. She was born in Kentucky August 9, 1849. They have one child – Hattie. Mrs. Tipton is a Methodist. Mr. Tipton votes the democratic ticket. Mr. Tipton held the office of Chancery Court clerk for four years, and has been trustee of the county for the last six years.