LOOKING BACK, II IN MCNAIRY COUNTY, TENNESSEE
PROBABLY EARLY 1900 MAY BE IN THE ANDERSON FAMILY IN SELMER
COMPILED BY NANCY WARDLOW KENNEDY
LOOKING BACK, II
IN MCNAIRY COUNTY, TENNESSEE
We are assembled here today,
The tribute of our love to pay
To those who are remembered last;
The uncrowned heroes of the past,
Whose deed will shine with brighter glow,
While generations come and go.
From McNairy Pioneers by Jennie S Perkins 1904
COMPILED BY NANCY WARDLOW KENNEDY Information for LOOKING BACK is obtained from various sources and not always verified. All research, court cases and transcribing by Nancy Wardlow Kennedy, unless otherwise noted. Acknowledgment is given, when known, to the source or author. I am sorry for any errors - they are not intentional. Looking Back is a random collection of McNairy County History. This is not an English essay so please expect misspelled words, typos and other errors. An index was made to help but it also may contain errors and omissions. March 1, 2015: When I was diagnosed with a meningioma in December, I decided to put all my work on the McNairy County website, in hopes it would help someone else. Some of my work, such as this one, has not been proofed, so please overlook any errors. It is not indexed. Rather, it was indexed, but different programs and printers changed the page layout and the original index is not correct. Since time was my biggest obstacle, I did not go back and index. Please use your Find key to search this document. Some of my work will overlap and be included in more than one document, but I thought it better to share than to be precise. My work as been important to me and important for it to be preserved. I love McNairy County History and I love those who love it with me.
Table of Contents
Names in Genealogy 4 Reminiscences of Old Purdy 4 Bill Simpsons Legal Experience 6 Homesick for Selmer in 1930 7 Buelah King vs A J King, petition for divorce 1884 9 Petition to Judge, from (ca 75) citizens of Adamsville 1938 10 A N Kirkman Settlement 1915 11 Ramer Girls Basketball Team 1927 11 McNairy County Sheriffs 12 Doctors in McNairy Count in 1850 and 1880 13 Letter from Bill Dugan, first airplane seen in Selmer 1924 14 J H Ferguson vs George Taylor, petition for road, 1907 14 Letter for a Civil War pension, T J Walker 14 William Ferguson vs L C Roten 15 Coke, Austin and allied families 16 Mrs. Ann Wesson, oldest citizen dead 1920 17 Saunders 18 Names of people living in and around Purdy 1859 19 Jacob Wolfe 23 Justices and Constables Elected 1906 23 Stantonville History 24 A. T. Springer 27 J R Davis Daybook, Iuka, Tishomingo Co, Miss. 1857- to ca 1865 27 Richard Rushing Bible Records 28 Thomas William Price Bible Records 28 State of Revenue Oct 1888 - Dec 1888 29 History Article by J C Taylor - Leapwood area - Wild Goose 32 Hill Family Bible Records 35 Smith and Wyatt Bible Records 35 William Hamm Bible Records 36 Huggins and Hamm Bible Records 38 Caroline Bowers Price Reynolds Hardin 40 Isham Forsythe 42 Frank & Jesse James 47 The Bridge 47 Aaron Springer 48 Henry Clay Farris 1850-1899 49 The Courtship 50 Saline Farris Chambers Caffey 51 James Haynes of Chewalla, Tn, pension appl and other articles 53
Dr. Harris T. B. Speer 58 Hanceford Emmons 61 W C Moore vs Nancy Lockman 62 John M Harris vs E H Ferguson 63 W F Mozier vs Jasper N Sipes 64 Lee R Lockman vs Margaret Roberson 65 John G Gooch vs Jesse Gooch 66 Estate of William C Kindel, those that owed him in 1877 ca 67 McNairy County School June 1921 and enrollment 69 Henry the Slave 69 History of Ramer Baptist Church 73 J W Sutton 75 Letter from Herman Price to Thomas Price 1930 76 Board of Education 1921 77 Voting Precinct 1902 77 Selmer Town Election 1922 78 From 2nd District 78 Center Hill School, Walking Down Memory Lane 79 Margaret Moore 81 Folks Living in Bethel Springs in 1880 82 Old Huggins Cemetery 83 Peter Moore Graves 84 Two misc letters 84 Will of Reuben Atkins 1879 85 Interview with Robert Dickerson 87 Black Teachers in 1906 88
tidd bitts ..............by Nancy Wardlow Kennedy
NAMES IN GENEALOGY When I first started genealogy, names bogged my mind. Every Wardlow family from here to the beginning of time had a John in it. James Wardlow had three sons and every one of them had a son named John, usually about the same age. It was devastating to try to figure out which one was mine. This naming pattern was used by our early European immigrants and it went something like this:
1st son after the father's father 1st daughter after the mother's mother 2nd son after the mother's father 2nd daughter after the father's mother 3rd son after the father 3rd daughter after the mother 4th son after father's eldest brother 4th daughter - mother's eldest sister 5th son after mother's eldest brother 5th daughter - father's eldest sister
This could go on forever. There were other brothers and sisters, aunts, uncles and grandparents. It was very rare to name a child other than ancestral names. Sometimes the mother's maiden name was the first name of child, especially Quaker names. I found a Thompson had married a Thompson and a child was named Thompson Thompson. One of my ancestors was named Martin Martin. Many times the second name was the mother's maiden name. My Mary Pleasants Bolding began having children about 1791 and all had the middle name of Pleasants. The Quakers liked to use desirable character traits such as Charity, Patience, Prudence and Temperance. In the 1800's we notice a movement to name children, especially girls, after states. Tennessee was a very poplar name during this time. Down through the years this tradition was lost. How I wish that I had used family names, at least for my children's middle name. Well, I did have a cat name after my grandmother. We had four little kittens we named Any, Minny, Minny and Mo. We gave them all away but Minny, who soon came to be known as Minnie Mae Donia. It was a crude awakening when about six months later we found she was a boy.
REMINISCENCES OF OLD PURDY If Bill Sweat and Lawson Lockman could wake up and see the old Purdy bone-yard today, being desecrated by raising corn and cotton on it, they would be amazed and astonished to see the destiny of this once famous horse swapping ground. Immense crowds used to come from all over the county and adjoining counties, to this noted bone-yard, which was just south of the public square. Back in the days when saloons were in Purdy, the crowd would become quite hilarious along towards night and break up with a few fist fights and sometimes a right serious cutting scrape. Among the first beginning of the temperance movement in Tenn, was an organization called the Murphys. I remember they held Murphy meetings in the old Presbyterian Church at
Purdy. Each member would pledge himself to abstain from all intoxicating liquors and wear a blue ribbon. Later the four mile law was enacted, 1887, I think, and no whiskey could be sold within four miles of a school or church. The method used to put saloons out was to surrender the charter of the town.
I remember my father and J.R. Adams, John M. Harris and others were instrumental in putting inputting saloons out of Purdy. There still remained two places in the county that were not within 4 miles of a church of school house, Hendrix's saloon, 5 miles north of Purdy and John Hickey Swain's saloon, in the northeast part of the county. These places were for a time the Mecca for all the drunkards in McNairy county and the scenes of many shootings and cutting scrapes and murders. The first newspaper I remember being published in Purdy was the McNairy County Sun, published by Dr. Daniel Barry, in the old Kin Dodd house, north of the bone-yard. It was a three column folio, a very small sheet. I think this was published in the year 1877. It was said the office had but one lower case "J." A hobo printer went to a nearby saloon to get a drink and left it on the counter. A copy of this paper remained in the John Ingram Bivouac rooms in the Jackson Free Library for several years, but has now disappeared. This paper was printed on an army press. The following year Col J. W. Purviance established the McNairy County Independent, (1878) which was printed on a Washington hand press. Later this paper was leased by the late Prof. M. R. Abernathy. During his incumbency it went through a fire. The type was dumped into nail kegs and boxes, and Will and Terry Abernathy, Frank Barry, Sterling Barry and myself set up this "pi" and received as compensation, fifty cents per day. Dr. Barry about this time established the Democrat, a three column eight page paper, which was published in the old Dr. Duke office, on the north side of public square. Prof. Abernathy later published the Symposium, the last paper published in Purdy. Hobo printers were more plentiful in those days before the linotype machine made its advent, than they are now. One name, John Allen, took up his abode in Purdy and remained several years and kept up his Saturday night drunks as long as he remained. The late I.W. Nash was a piratical printer and published a paper in Purdy, I think prior to any of the above mentioned publications.