Transcribed by Janette West Grimes


January 29, 1953


* Cal'sColumn *



†† The next name in the Census Record of Smith Co. for 1850 in the Pleasant Shade section is that of George Jenkins, aged 32 years; and born in Tennessee. His wife was Barbara Jenkins, born in Tennessee in 1815 and believed to have been a Miss Hesson prior to her marriage. Two children of the couple are listed in 1850: Reuben Jenkins, 14 years old; and Nancy, eight. Our personal records of the family indicate that this George Jenkins went to Illinois later in life, that he was the son of Samuel Jenkins and his wife Sabrey Goad Jenkins; and that he had the following brothers: Dutch Jenkins, married, we believe, a Hesson; Coleman Jenkins, married four times and the names of only two of his wives are known, one of them having been a Davis and the other a McClard; Henry Jenkins, married Lucinda Gregory, daughter of our own great-great-uncle, Joel Gregory; Reuben Jenkins, married Martha, daughter of Jackson Hargis; and later to Maria Willliams; and Buck Jenkins, married Polly Boston, daughter of George Boston.


†† George Jenkins had at least one daughter born after 1850, but we have no record of her name. Dutch Jenkins and his wife, the former supposed Miss Hesson, were the parents of: George Jenkins, went to Georgia; William Jenkins, to Georgia; Lee Jenkins, married Rebecca Boston and became the father of: Jasper Jenkins, Jake Jenkins, and Wiseman Jenkins; Mary Jenkins, no further information; and one other child, bur our record does not say whether male or female.


†† The next son on our list of Samuel Jenkins' sons is Henry Jenkins, who was the father of: Mary Jenkins, married Ben Coley; William Chesley Jenkins, commonly called "Bill Sam," and who married Jane Boston, daughter of George and his second wife; occasionally called "Doobie" Jenkins; John W. Jenkins, married Nancy, a sister of Jane Boston; Matilda Jenkins, married Bill Nick Jenkins; Betty Jenkins, died young; as did a son, Henry L. Jenkins; and one other daughter, Martha, of whom we have no further information; Bud Jenkins, that Bill Sam Jenkins was the father of Squire Henry Jenkins, of Russell Hill; and also of the merchant at that place, Johnnie H. Jenkins. Mrs. B. C. Webb, of near Lafayette, is a daughter of the John Jenkins above mentioned.


†† Coleman Jenkins by his various wives was the father of: Margaret Jenkins, married George (Red) Jenkins, some sort of a cousin, and became the father of: Frank, Lon, Harve, Walter, Staley, Wilson and some daughters; Elizabeth Jenkins, married first to Jim Jenkins and later to Lon Jenkins and had by the latter husband, Johnnie Lon and Albert Jenkins; Cis Jenkins, and we have no further information; Bud Jenkins, married first to Matilda, daughter of George Boston; later, a Driver and still later a Whittemore; Calvin Jenkins, went to Texas, and we have no further information on him; Garfield Jenkins, went to California; Bertha, married Harve Russell; Jim Jenkins, commonly called "Cat Hair" Jenkins, married a Miss Gregory, a distant relative of the editor; Grant Jenkins, married Miss Fannie Gregory, a first cousin of the editor's father; Sabrey Jenkins, married the late Ben Wilburn, of upper Dixon's Creek; Coleman, no further information; and Elder Willie Jenkins, married first to a Parker and later to an Adamson, and once Register of this county, and now living near Liberty, Tenn.


†† Reuben Jenkins, a brother of Henry and Coleman and the other sons of Samuel Jenkins, married first to Martha Hargis, by whom he was the father of a son who died in infancy; Alexander Washington Jenkins, president of the local bank and one of our oldest and most highly respected citizens, John Jenkins, Shade, Coil and Mary Jenkins.


†† ReubenJenkins, by his second wife, Marie Williams, was the father of: Sam, Jesse, Willie, Lona and Mallie Jenkins.


†† Buck Jenkins and his wife, Polly Boston Jenkins, were the parents of: Elder George Jenkins, a Baptist minister, who married Martha Gamn, and was later killed by a train; Reuben Jenkins, married a Glasgow and later moved to Texas; and Sam and Bill Jenkins, who also went to Texas. It should be added just here that the late Richard Jenkins, who formerly lived near Lafayette, was the son of the minister, George Jenkins. Richard married Viola, daughter of Timmie Gregory, son of Joe Red Gregory, son of Ambrose Gregory, son of Bry, one of the writer's great-great-grandfathers.


†† The next name of the head of a family is that of John N. Hesson born in Tennessee in 1813. His wife is listed as Nancy Hesson, born in 1815. We are not positive, but we are almost certain that Nancy Hesson was the former Miss Nancy Kemp, daughter of Solomon Kemp, a soldier of the American Revolution.


†† We would judge that John N. Hesson was the son of Andrew Hesson, who lived with John in 1850 and was 72 years of age and a native of North Carolina. He was a shoemaker by trade. The following children are listed in the old census records: Judy, 15; Peter A., 11; Nancy A., nine; Leighton, six; Calyton, four; and Peyton, one year old. We are quite sure that many of the Hessons in the Pleasant Shade and Russell Hill section are the descendants of this couple of 103 years ago.


†† Right S. Rigsby, 39, born in South Carolina is the next head of a family listed. His wife was Alithia, aged 29 years. No children are listed. Rigsby was also a shoe maker.


†† Next on the Census Record is John Ballard, born in Virginia in 1783, wife, Nancy Ballard, 50 years of age; and children: Eliza, 20; Fanny, 16; Polly, 13; John, eight; James H. Ballard, 27; and Allen Ballard, four years of age. These are believed to be the ancestors of all of many of the Ballards of a later day in the Pleasant Shade section.


†† Allen C. Ballard, 24, is the next head of a family listed. His wife was Judy Ballard; and their children were: Alithia, three; and Henry Ballard, seven months old.


†† Next is Matthew Harper, 22, and a native of Tennessee. His wife was Polly Harper; and their children were: Addison, four; and Lucy, two years old. Living with the family was Betsy Harper, then 55, and born in Virginia. We might add that the Harper family has been long absent from the Pleasant Shade section, there being not one living in that part of Smith County.


†† James Piper is the next head of a family. He was in 1850, 46 years of age, and a native of Tennessee. His wife was Marinda Piper. Their children listed were: William, 20; Archibald J., 18; Samuel, 15; Tapley, 13; Thomas, 11; Cynthia, eight; Rhoda A., four; and Mirinda, 15 and evidently a twin sister of Samuel Piper. It is our opinion that James Piperhad a sister , Sarah Piper, who married Tapley Gregory, son of the Bry Gregory above mentioned. We are of the opinion that James Piper named his son, Tapley, for the son's uncle by marriage, Tapley Gregory. Tapley Piper was born in 1837 in Smith County, Tennessee. His son, Henry, is still living at the old Tapley Piper farm, near Graveltown, on Peyton's Creek.


†† Tapley Gregory served in the War of 1812, and his record is on file at Washington. It may be well to give thw list of descendants of Tapley and Sarah Piper Gregory, as they have never been published, so far as the writer's knowledge goes. Tapley and his wife, Sarah Piper, were the parents of only one son, of whom we have record. He was Jothan Gregory, born Oct. 8, 1817; and died Sept. 15, 1885. Jothan married Myra Bedford in McMinn County, Tennessee, on Feb. 6, 1838. Children born to them were: John Gregory, died in infancy; Tapley Gregory, married Susan Terry; Stephen Gregory, born Aug. 12, 1841 and died Nov. 1, 1891; James M. Gregory married Madge _____; Sarah E. Gregory, died at the age of 16; Alexander Seth Gregory, married Magnolis Rorer, a sister of the wife of Stephen above mentioned, but whose's wife was not then given; Nancy M. Gregory, died yound; Benjamin Addison Gregory, married Laura Hassler; William Dailey Gregory, married Mattie Summerard; John Pleasant Gregory, married Mary Petty and later Eliza Henry; Myra Evelyn Gregory, married Starling Peoples; Hyden H. Gregory, married Nannie Keith; Jothan Gregory, Jr., married Lula Longbridge; and Joseph Gregory, no further information.


†† Stephen Gregory, son of Jothan Gregory, married a widow, in January, 1870, Margaret Rorex Thompson, and became the father of: James Henry Gregory, born Nov. 11, 1870, married Mary Leonard Hughes on Dec. 22, 1896; and died Oct. 31, 1906; Robert Gregory, married Fannie Longbridge; William Gregory, married first Dora Berry and later Ella Peoples; Addison Gregory, married Mame McCamy; Georgia Gregory, married Jim Hill; May, died young; as did Rossie, anotherdaughter, Maude Gregory, marriedJefferson Young; and Tom Gregory, married Cora Peoples and later Gertrude Smith.


†† James Henry Gregory and his wife, Mary Leonard Hughes, were the parents of : Ruth, married Robert F. Hamilton; and Willie Mae Gregory, who died at 20 years of age. The information on the descendants of Tapley Gregory was furnished to the writer by Mrs. Robert F. Hamilton, who still resides at 315 Selvidge Street, Dalton, Ga.


†† The next name in the old Census Records is that of Sallie Oldham, evidently a widow of 53 in the year 1850. She was born in Virginia. In our own records made many years ago we find her listed as a Miss Sallie Nixon, who became the wife of Samuel Oldham after the death of his first wife, Miss Nancy Nixon. According to our own records, Sam Oldham, was the father of: Robert Oldham, married Rhoda Piper; Mary Oldham, married Tom Miller; Dick or Richard Oldham, no further information; Nancy Oldham, married William Piper; and Lou Oldham, married Alexande Piper. The Census Record gives the name of her children in 1850 as Richard Oldham, 21 years of age; and Nancy Oldham and Lucinda Oldham, 18 and nine years of age, respectively. Bob Oldham and his wife, the former Miss Rhoda Piper, are listed next in the record, indicating that the son lived in a house next adjoining his mother's home. Robert Oldham in 1835, was 23 years of age, and was a blacksmith by calling. His wife, Rhoda, was 20 years of age. Children listed were Samuel Oldham, a year old. Later Mary Ann, John and Sallie Oldham were born. Samuel Oldham grew to be a man and married a Miss Smith, the daughter of Elder Edmond Luther Smith, mentioned in last week's paper; Mary Ann, married a Harris; James, married a Piper; and Sallie Oldham, no additional information. Sam Oldham died rather early, leaving two sons, Charlie S. Oldham, still living near Pleasant Shade; and one of our very best friends; and James Oldham, who died a number of years ago.


†† The next head of a family is George W. Oldhamaged 67 years and a native of Virginia. His wife, Celia Oldham, is listed as being a native of the same State and a year younger than her husband. One son, George Oldham, Jr., is listed.


†† We have a fairly complete list of this man and his family. George W. Oldham, born in Virginia in 1783, and married there Miss Celia Sutherland, born in 1784. They arrived on Peyton's Creek in Smith County, in October or November, 1805, and settled at the present Herbert Sloan Place, about three miles north of Monoville and two miles south of Pleasant Shade. When they arrived in Tennessee, their second child, Polly Ann, was about nine months old. We are sorry that we do not know who the oldest child was, but suppose it was a daughter, Judy, who later married Nelson Davis.


†† The children of George Oldham and his wife, Celia, were: Polly Ann, married William Nixon; Judy, as set forth just above; Sam Oldham, married Nancy Nixon, a sister of William Nixon; and later Sam married Sallie Nixon, referred to earlier in this article; Tommie, married a Massey; William, married a sister of Tommie's wife; Celia, married Brice Piper; Willis, married first a Beasley, and second marriage was to a Miss Richards; Letha, married James Gregory, our father's own uncle; James, married a McKinnis; Betsy, married George Payne; Adeline, married Levi Shoulders; and Geo, Jr., who is the George mentioned in the old Census Records. He was never married and was a victim of infantile paralysis.


†† Polly Ann Nixon and her husband, William Nixon, were the parents of: Geo., drowned as a young man, who was trying to save a hen from drowning in the Cumberland where a flat boat was being loaded at the mouth of Peyton's Creek and a hen flew from a coop and landed in the river and young Nixon drowned as he sought to rescue the fowl; William Francis, died in the Mexican War; Celia, married J. Taylor; John C. Nixon, no further information; Tom Nixon, married a Hudson; Hamilton Nixon, killed by a horse; Sam, married Harriet Cartwright; Adeline married Joe Taylor; James C. Nixon, commonly known as Uncle Jim, married Judy Gregory, daughter of Jabe Gregory, the son of Little Bill, the son of John Gregory, our great-great-grandfather, and later a Donoho; and the tenth child, Jane, of whom we have no further information.


†† Judy Oldham married Nelson Davis and became the mother of: Willis Davis, married a Bowman; Celia, married Jabe Gregory, of the preceeding paraghaph; and Emily Davis, married Ned Gregory, a brother of Jabe Gregory.


†† We gave the children of Sam Oldham earlier in this article and there is no need to repeat here. However, we left off part of the descendants -- John Oldham, married a Brimm and was the father of: Arch, Herbert, Sam and Herman Oldham. Mary Oldham,daughter of Sam Oldham, married Tom Miller and became the mother of: James Miller, married our first cousin, Fronia Shoulders; Billie, Nanny and Mary Jane Miller.


†† Tommie Oldham, the son of George and his wife, Celia Sutherland, was in reality Thomas Jefferson Oldham. He married a Massey and became the father of: Hugh Oldham, married Em Dillehay; Ben Oldham, want to Oklahoma; Tom Oldham, killed during the Civil War; Sarah, married Jim Blackwell; Judy Oldham, married Arch Blackwell; William Oldham, no additional information; and Jane Oldham, married a Smith, and of whom we have no further information.


†† We might add to the preceding paragraph that Hugh Oldham and his wife, Em. Dillehay, were the parents of: Dossie, married Robert Gregory, son of Jesse, son of Curtis, son of Smith, son of Squire Bill, a brother of Bry, our own ancestor; Martha, married Eli J. Cothron, whose daughter, Mrs. Evie Meador, is one of our nearest neighbors; Sam, married a Merryman; Herbie, married Florence Gregory, daughter of Brice Gregory, a first cousin of the editor's father; Bud, married a Cothron; Pole, married Sallie, daughter of Tom Josh Gregory, son of Joshua, son of Jim Gregory, an uncle of the editor's father; and Quillie Oldham, married Tom Stokes Gregory, Stokes Gregory being a brother to Joshua.


†† William Oldham and his wife, the former Miss Massey, a sister of Mrs. Tommie Oldham, were the parents of: Sam Oldham, married Sallie Gregory, commonly called "Chibb," a first cousin of our father; Celia Oldham, married John Shoulders; Murray Oldham, no further information; Nancy Oldham, married Rufus, son of Calvin Beasley, whose wife, Susan Gregory, was our father's own aunt; Margaret Oldham, married Lon Dias; Candace Oldham, married a Richardson; Ann Oldham, married a Burris; Mima Oldham, no further information; and James, bitten at the age of about ten years by a large rattlesnake one Sunday afternoon while driving the milk cow from the pasture and died before medical help could be reached. This was one of the tragedies of the Mace's Hill section that was related to an open-mouthed and wide-eyed boy of about six, who is now in his 62nd year and is the author of "Cal's Column." It is related that the mother of James or Jim asked the child to go to the pasture for the cow; that he apparently did not want to go, the child having perhaps a premonition of impending doom; that he called for his dog and started for the cow which was in the pasture near the present home of Richard Towns, on Toetown Branch, about 2 miles southwest of the present Pleasant Shade, the story, as we recall it, was that the dog soon had the cow "on the run," and rushing down the rocky slope of the hillside. In passing over a piece of very stony ground, the cow and the dog aroused a rattler which was soon in a rage. As young Oldham stepped down from a bluff, the rattlesnake stuck the child in the leg and caused his death in a matter of hours. It is needless to add that his mother in a large measure never recovered from the blow, blaming herself for forcing the child to make a journey with fatal results.


†† Next week we hope to give some of the other descendants of George and Celia Sutherland Oldham. If any readers find these records "dry reading," just remember that others enjoy them very much. In fact, we do not mean to boast, but we have more favorable comment about "Cal's Column" than any other feature of the Times.


( To be continued )



This Article Appeared In The Times

But Was Not Actually Titled Calís Column



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†† The following letter has been received from our good friend, Haskell Ferguson, relative to an error of ours in a recent issue of the Times. The letter, which is self explanatory, is given below. We also received a similar correction from another party whose communication has been temporarily misplaced. We give the Ferguson letter:



†† I believe you are mistaken about the identity of that fine woman who married Martlow Whitley. She was certainly called Maggie and I am sure that she was the daughter of Dr. R. T. G. Hale. The Hales lived for many years prior to 1894, nearly two miles northwest of Bethany. The good doctor practiced medicine in the surrounding territory.


†† The Sunday School where Mr. Whitley found his future wife was, I believe, the one conducted by Dr. Hale at Bethany. Large crowds attended this Sunday School. Through his rare gift of leadership, he kept interest in Scripture study at a white heat. "Knowledge of the Bible," remarked a very successful lawyer in my presence, "I gained while attending Dr. Hale's Sunday School has been worth as much to me as any two years of leterary schooling I ever received."


†† Incidentally we might mention that Mr. Whitley started life as a teacher, at which profession he was very successful. It is said that he lost interest in this calling when elected to one of the branches of the State Legislature, took up the study of law and soon became a practicing attorney. We are not sure that his legal studies did not ante-date his service in the Legislature.


†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Your friend,

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† HASKELL