The Westmoreland Family

The Westmorelands were amongst the earliest Fayette County settlers, with brothers Robert and John Westmoreland arriving from Jasper County in the early 1820s, settling in what eventually became the County Line Christian Church community, near the Spalding County line. Robert Westmoreland provided the land upon which the first County Line Christian Church was built. Several of the family are listed amongst the charter members, and many of their extended family are buried there. Both brothers are listed in the earliest Fayette County Tax Digests, with Robert Westmoreland's name first appearing in 1823.

Robert and John Westmoreland were two of nine children thought to have been born to Joseph Westmoreland (1740-1789) and Martha Shores (c.1745-1838), of Mecklenburg County, Virginia. Joseph Westmoreland was a Revolutionary War soldier, serving three years in the Continental Army, 5th Division, Virginia Regiment. The 1790 census for Mecklenburg County lists Martha Westmoreland as a widow with nine children. Soon after, the family made their way to Georgia, with their mother eventually joining the two sons who had located in Fayette County, where it has been said she is buried.

An older brother, Joseph Westmoreland (born 1774), married Elizabeth Simmons (c.1770-1844), served in the Georgia Militia in 1795 and 1804, lived in Jasper County, and eventually removed to Texas. They had eight children. Another older brother, Reuben Westmoreland (c.1776-1845), married (1) Rebecca Jane Jackson (c.1778-1803), and (2) Keziah Simmons (1784-1868), also served in the Georgia Militia in 1795 and 1804, as well as in the War of 1812, and was a pioneer Coweta County settler. He had eight children. A sister, Sybilla Westmoreland (c.1784-1837), married Benjamin Moody (1777-1845), who was also a War of 1812 veteran, and had ten children.

Robert Westmoreland (1783-1851) also served, with his brother, in the War of 1812. He married Anna Louise Foreman (1788-1853) in Jasper County. They are listed with their family in Fayette County census records for 1830, 1840 and 1850. His land was located in District 4. It is thought he was a physician. To them were born nine children:

1. Ann Louisa Westmoreland (1811-1880) married Hiram Travis (1808-1875), and had Mary Antoinette, Jane E., Sidney P., Charles, Thomas S., Robert W., A. Elizabeth, Mattie, and John William Travis.

2. John Gray Westmoreland (1816-1887) married Louisa M. Green Buchanan (1822-1850), and had Annie Medora and Robert Walsingham Westmoreland. He was a physician.

3. Martha Westmoreland (1817-1883) married Mark Jackson Westmoreland Jr. (1838-1889), and had Mark Jackson III, Frances, Martha, Sarah, Ida, and Wesley Westmoreland. They were first cousins, once removed.

4. James H. Westmoreland (1818-1850).

5. Mary Ann Westmoreland (1821-1854) married Charles Bailey (1813-1865), and had Robert F., Missouri, Alexandra, Josephine, John E. and Mary Bailey.

6. Wesley Westmoreland (1823-1853).

7. Willis Foreman Westmoreland (1828-1890) married Elizabeth Jourdan, and had Caroline and Willis Foreman Westmoreland Jr. He was a physician.

8. Augustus Wade Westmoreland (1829-1850).

9. Miranda E. Westmoreland (c.1832-c.1857) married Aquilla Burroughs Matthews (1819-1898), and had Alice and Elizabeth Matthews.

John Westmoreland (1788-1848) married Elizabeth Harvey (1789-1852), daughter of Zephaniah Harvey and Nancy Smith of Jasper County. They are listed in the 1820 census in Jasper County, then in early Fayette County census records, beginning in 1830. John Westmoreland was first listed in the Fayette County Tax Digest in 1827. By 1829, he held significant acreage in Coweta, Fayette (District 4) and Pike Counties. To them were born ten children:

1. Calvin Shores Westmoreland (1810-1882) married three times. First, to Nancy Keziah Malone (born 1822), and had Thomas Jefferson, John Christopher, Mary Elizabeth, Emily J., George F., Nathan S., and Lula Westmoreland. He married, second, Julia A. Thomas Black, and had Rosa, Robert L., and Walter Calvin Westmoreland. He and his third wife (Selina F. Taylor) did not have issue.

2. Milton W. Westmoreland (1812-1855) married Catherine P. Smith, and had John Milton Westmoreland.

3. Nancy S. Westmoreland (born 1814, died after 1890) married Thomas C. Matthews (1808-1884), and had Mary Ann, Sarah Jane, John Thomas, Robert Lee, Theophilus, Wade, Elizabeth, Wesley, Celestia Adriana, and Nancy Ida Matthews.

4. John M. Westmoreland (1818-1850).

5. Mark Wade Westmoreland (1821-1898) married Louisa Whitsell (1832-1910), and had Sarah Elizabeth, John Willis, William Bartow, Minnie Lee, Wade Wesley, Jesse Milton, and Frances Westmoreland.

6. Wesley W. Westmoreland (1823-1853) married Mary Elizabeth (surname unknown), and had Nathan P. Westmoreland.

7. Frances E. Westmoreland (born c.1824) married Stephen E. Wilson (born 1821), and had Samuel O., John W., Nancy J., Elizabeth H., Charles S., and Frances Wilson.

8. Mary Ann Westmoreland (1827-1916) married William Wright Matthews (1824-1880), and had Josephine, E. (female), W.W. (male), John W., and Fannie Matthews.

9. Robert J. Westmoreland (born c.1829).

(10) Sarah Jane Westmoreland (1831-1902) married William Glass (1827-1904), and had Manson Rhett, Elizabeth A., William Y., Pearl, Idel, Alene, and John Will Glass.

Many among this large Westmoreland family were physicians, with two of those noted as the most prominent in the profession in the South. John Gray and his brother Willis Foreman Westmoreland established the Atlanta Medical College in 1855, later becoming the Atlanta College of Physicians and Surgeons, located on the campus of Emory University. They also formed the Atlanta Society of Medicine, and initiated the Atlanta Medical and Surgical Journal, which for many years was the leading periodical of its type in the South.

John Gray Westmoreland served as the Dean of the Atlanta Medical College for over forty years. During the War Between the States he established the first Confederate States Army Hospital at the Atlanta Medical College, serving the four years of the War at the hospital as a surgeon. Willis Foreman Westmoreland, whose first medical office was located in Fayette County, was Professor of Surgery at the college, delivering the first course of lectures in 1855, was considered the leading surgeon in the South, was the first editor of the aforementioned journal, and during the War, served as a Surgeon-General.

Copyright 2001by Robert E. Johnston.  This copy contributed for use by Fayette Co., GAGenWeb.

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Compilation Copyright 2008 - Present by Linda Blum-Barton