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12 May 2015

The Naming of Atlanta (Tombstone Tuesday)

Plainly put, Atlanta was built on the railroad. Lucian Lamar Knight, in Georgia's Landmarks, Memorials and Legends, says it this way:
...[T]he chief factors in Atlanta's phenomenal growth are the railway lines which converge at her civic center, there forming a web of steel, from the bi-focal points of which they radiate in every direction.
In an effort to connect railroad lines within the state, a point seven miles east of the Chattahoochee River was picked as a spot "best suited for running branch lines to various towns within the State." This point was called Terminus, defined as "an end point on a transportation line or the town in which it is located."

A man named Hardy Ivy was the first person to purchase a tract of land and build a shanty, before the town was surveyed, in 1836. It wasn't until 1842, when a new track was tested -- and considered a success, that the town began to really come to life with the building of new stores and churches.

Wilson Lumpkin, an ex-Governor of the state, was at this time one of the commissioners appointed to supervise the building of the Western & Atlantic Railroad. Lumpkin helped re-survey the land, fixed a site for the depot, and negotiated enough property for terminal facilities. Many wanted to rename the town after Lumpkin in appreciation for the prominent part he played in laying off several land lots. He refused, so people circumvented his protest a bit by renaming the town after his youngest daughter, Martha.

In This Spot Set Apart By The City Is Buried
Martha Lumpkin Compton
August 25, 1827 - February 13, 1917
Wife Of Thomas M. Compton
Daughter Of Governor Wilson Lumpkin
And His Wife Annis Hopson Lumpkin
In Honor Of This Lady, Atlanta Was
Once Named Marthasville

Oakland Cemetery at Atlanta, Georgia

ATLANTA'S NAMESAKE DEAD
(Associated Press)
DECATUR, GA, Feb 13 -- Mrs. Martha Lumpkin Compton, after whom the city of Atlanta was twice named died at her home here tonight at the age of 90 years. In 1844 the village now called Atlanta, was named Marthasville in her honor. Four years later it was named Atlanta after the nickname of "Atalanta," which Mrs. Compton's father, Governor Wilson Lumpkin had given her. [Montgomery Advertiser (Alabama), 14 February 1917]

11 May 2015

Park for Nancy Hart, a Revolutionary Heroine

Lucian Lamar Knight described her as an "undaunted queen of the forest..."

NANCY HART
On Wahatche (War Woman) Creek, in Revolutionary times, lived Nancy
Morgan Hart, her husband, Benjamin, and their children.  Six feet tall,
masculine in strength and courage, Nancy Hart was a staunch patriot, a
deadly shot, a skilled doctor, and a good neighbor.  A spy for the colonists,
she is credited with capturing several Tories.  Later, with her son, John, and
his family, she joined a wagon train to Henderson County, Kentucky,
where she is buried...A replica of her log home, with chimney stones from the
original, is in the Nancy Hart Park, [in Elbert County.]

"The most famous story of Hart's escapades as a frontier patriot began when a group of six (some accounts say five) Tories came to her cabin and demanded information concerning the location of a certain Whig leader. Only minutes earlier, the Whig, hotly pursued by the Tories, had stopped by the Hart cabin and enlisted Hart's aid as he made his escape. Hart insisted that no one had passed through her neck of the woods for days. Convinced that she was lying, one of the Tories shot and killed Hart's prized gobbler. After ordering her to cook the turkey, the Tories entered the cabin, stacked their weapons in the corner, and demanded something to drink. Hart obliged them by opening her jugs of wine. Once the Tories began to feel the intoxicating effects of the wine, Hart sent her daughter Sukey to the spring for a bucket of water. Hart secretly instructed her to blow a conch shell, which was kept on a nearby stump, to alert the neighbors that Tories were in the cabin.

As Hart served her unwanted guests, she frequently passed between them and their stacked weapons. Inconspicuously, she began to pass the loaded muskets, one by one, through a chink in the cabin wall to Sukey, who had by this time slipped around to the rear of the building. When the Tories noticed what she was doing and sprang to their feet, Hart threatened to shoot the first man who moved a foot. Ignoring her warning, one Tory lunged forward, and Hart pulled the trigger, killing the man. Seizing another weapon, she urged her daughter to run for help. Hart shot a second Tory who made a move toward the stacked weapons and held off the remaining loyalists until her husband and several others arrived. Benjamin Hart wanted to shoot the Tories, but Hart wanted them to hang. Consequently the remaining Tories were hanged from a nearby tree. In 1912 workmen grading a railroad near the site of the old Hart cabin unearthed a neat row of six skeletons that lay under nearly three feet of earth and were estimated to have been buried for at least a century. This discovery seemed to validate the most oft-told story of the Hart legend." [snippet from New Georgia Encyclopedia article, "Nancy Hart (ca. 1735-1830)"]

Click here for Nancy's FindAGrave memorial.


02 May 2015

Heardmont: the Home of Gov. Stephen Heard

Gov. Heard's Home
Off this road lies the site of Heardmont, home of Governor Stephen Heard,
1740 - 1815, and "God's Acre," the family cemetery where he lies buried.  A
ten acre park surrounding the site is owned and maintained by the Stephen
Heard Chapter, D.A.R.  A Virginian of Irish descent, Heard came to Georgia,
establishing Heard's Fort, now Washington, Ga., in 1773, and fighting with
Gen. Elijah Clarke at the Battle of Kettle Creek where he was captured.
As President of the Council, he was de facto Governor for a period in 1781.
After moving to Heardmont he was one of three who selected the site of
Elberton.

"Near the outskirts of the little town of Heardmont, in the eastern part of [Elbert] county, stood the old home of Stephen Heard, the founder of Washington and one of the most noted of Georgia's early patriots and pioneers. It was called Heardmont, from the name of the owner. The residence is said to have been the first lathed and plastered house in this part of the State, and when the contractors were building it people came miles to see the handsome structure. In appearance it was not unlike the old Heard house at Washington, with a double veranda enclosed by tall columns. The furniture was of solid mahogany purchased in London. The home was destroyed years ago. But the little cemetery is still to be seen and the monuments are well preserved." [Georgia's Landmarks, Memorials and Legends by Lucian Lamar Knight (1914), pg. 537]

Gov. Heard's Grave
Stephen Heard, Governor of Georgia in 1781, lawyer, planter, surveyor
and soldier of the Revolution, lies buried in this family cemetery...Heard's
home "Heardmont" once stood nearby...


In the family burial ground at Heardmont lie the mortal remains of the old patriot. The inscription on his tomb is as follows:
Sacred to the memory of Colonel Stephen Heard. He was a soldier of the American Revolution, and fought with the great Washington for the liberties of his country. He died on the 15th of November, 1815, in the 75th year of his age, beloved and lamented by all who knew him. "An honest man is the noblest work of God."

All photos © 2011-15 S. Lincecum.

18 April 2015

Walter T. Colquitt, by Lucian Lamar Knight

Walter T. Colquitt
[Wikimedia Commons]
The following is a sketch of Walter T. Colquitt, namesake of Colquitt County, as penned by Lucian Lamar Knight for his 1914 publication, Georgia's Landmarks, Memorials and Legends:
Judge Walter T. Colquitt was one of the most brilliantly gifted of Georgia's ante-bellum statesman. As an orator his achievements on the hustings have rarely been excelled; he was also a minister of the gospel and a jurist of high rank; and by reason of his prestige as a popular leader he was elected to a seat in the Senate of the United States. Judge Colquitt came of English stock and was born in Halifax County, Va., on December 27, 1799. His boyhood days were spent in Hancock County, Ga., whither his parent removed and he received his education in the famous academy at Mt. Zion. Later he located in Columbus, where he continued to reside until his death. He was twice elected to Congress as a Whig; but, on the nomination of William Henry Harrison, he gave his support to Van Buren, the nominee of the Democrats. Notwithstanding this change of fronts -- the result of deliberate conviction -- he was soon thereafter elected to the United States Senate, where his power as an advocate was most distinctly felt; but he resigned his seat in 1848, taking no further part in politics. Judge Colquitt died at his home in Columbus, while in the meridian of life, at the age of fifty-six. He is buried in Linnwood [sic] Cemetery, on the Jeter lot, where his grave is unmarked. Judge Colquitt was three times married. Of his children -- Alfred H. Colquitt, "the hero of Olustee," became a Major-General in the Confederate Army, Governor of Georgia, and United States Senator; while Peyton H. Colquitt was killed at the head of his regiment while leading a gallant charge, in the Battle of Chickamauga, in 1863.
Judge Colquitt's son Peyton was also interred at Linwood Cemetery. I have posted about him at the Southern Graves blog.

Photo © 2006 S. Lincecum

25 March 2015

Eli Warren: of Sound Sense and Patriotism

About a week ago, we began a walking tour of Perry, a town in Houston County, Georgia. It took us a little over an hour to visit just under 30 "significant sites". We have many more to go, and definitely plan to finish the tour.

One of the sites we had the pleasure to see was a house built for Eli Warren (b. 1801). It dates prior to 1870, and several window panes still with the home today bear dates of 1893 and 1894.


The brochure I have to accompany the tour states: "General Warren sat in two constitutional conventions of Georgia, in both of which also sat his only son, and in one of which also his son-in-law, Colonel Goode; a coincidence never equaled in the history of this State."

Eli Warren died 14 February 1882 and rests in Evergreen Cemetery, about five blocks from his former home at 906 Evergreen Street. I visited his grave site about four years ago.

And here's an obituary from the 15 February 1882 Atlanta Constitution:
General Eli Warren

His Sudden Death Yesterday from Heart Disease


A special dispatch to "The Constitution" states that General Eli Warren died suddenly at his home in Perry at 12 o'clock yesterday of heart disease.

General Warren was one of the oldest of the living prominent men in Georgia, being eighty-two years of age. He was perhaps during his lifetime more continually identified with public matters in Georgia than any other man in the state. Although more than four score years of age, his interest in public matters continued up, we might say, to the day of his death. As a lawyer and as a planter, as a legislator, as a member of conventions and as a party leader no man has been more honest, and no man's acts have been marked by more strong, sound sense and patriotism than those of General Warren. His acts as a member of the constitutional convention of 1877 bear out the statement that the last years of his life witnessed a clearness of mind and soundness of judgement rarely found in one of his age. He has been the friend, acquaintance and contemporary of every distinguished public man in Georgia for the last half a century and has been personally respected by them all. He has enjoyed their confidence as well as the confidence of the people. He was known as a man who took great interest in agriculture, indentifying himself with the interests of the farmers. While he was not what we would call a finished orator, he was an unusually strong writer and a man who always expressed his opinions fearlessly and openly upon all questions. He was one of the few men that we have had in Georgia who dared to face public criticism and adverse public opinion. He was never afraid to express his sentiments and act by his judgement.

He leaves two children that we remember -- a son, Mr. Josiah L. Warren, of Savannah, and a daughter, who married Judge Grice, at one time of the Macon judicial circuit. Mr. Warren, of Savannah, is a man of about 45 years of age and inherits the independence and ability of his father together with his turn for political management.

In the death of Judge Warren Georgia loses a noble man whose service in the forming of her fundamental law was the fitting conclusion of a long life of usefulness and honor.
Eli Warren
Born Feb 27, 1801
Died Feb 14, 1882

Honored and Useful in Life,
And Peaceful in Death.
His Children Rise Up and
Call Him Blessed.

I'm actually connected to General Eli Warren. He was an uncle of the husband (Silas Scarborough) of the sister-in-law (Martha Jackson) of my 2nd great grand uncle, William Peavy.

11 June 2014

Lester Cemetery in Elko

Many, many moons ago, I received a listing of burials at Lester Cemetery in Elko, Houston County, Georgia. I had them online with one of the county projects, but it was subsequently removed when I changed things over on my website.

Cover page I received with list.

I just finished putting all the burials (that weren't already there) on FindAGrave.  Give it a search, if you'd like.  Surnames include:
Brown, Burke, Cobb, Cosby, Crowd, Dyer, Jackson, Lester, Malcolm, McNair, Perry, Thomas, Vance






Search for cemetery records in Lester Family Cemetery, GA at by entering a surname and clicking search:

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10 June 2014

Swallowing Hairpins Caused Death of Girl

Simply an obituary I felt compelled to share:
SWALLOWING HAIRPINS CAUSED DEATH OF GIRL
Savannah, Ga., April 24 -- (Special.) -- Katie Tuiseda, a Polish girl, who was found ill wandering about the union station several weeks ago, is dead, as the result of blood poisoning caused by a number of wire hairpins which the young woman swallowed. She had twisted the hairpins up, but after they were in her stomach, they had straightened out and began working their way out of her body through her sides. She suffered in silence, refusing to tell physicians of the pins until when they began to protrude they were discovered. An operation was performed, but the young woman's life could not be saved. Nothing is known of her people, and she was given a pauper's burial. [Atlanta Constitution (Georgia), 25 April 1908]