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blog Jeannette Holland Austin
Jeannette Holland Austin Profile


What Northerners Thought of Southerners in 1864

Athens Railroad Depot " L. S. Packard, Pine Bluff, Moore county, N. C., formerly of Warrensburg, N. Y. Few persons realize from passing through the South what the soil is capable of producing under careful cultivation. After a stay of several years among Southern people I have learned much about them and their modes of work, the care the lands ought to have and the yields that can be expected under good cultivation. I give in brief my observations: Southern men and women are justly entitled to the credit they get for being the most hospitable people in the United States. The majority of them live easy, enjoy life and are contented to go forward in the quiet ways of their fathers. Some, however, are branching out, learning to make money and are accumulating fortunes on the farms and in the factories. It is the general belief of the Northern people that Southern people cannot succeed. To show an instance where a Southern born man has succeeded I shall confine my article to one man and to one farm, and in my future letters give the names of Northern men who have come South. Within a mile of the Seaboard Air Line in the county of Clark and State of Georgia, Mr. John Smith has a farm of several hundred acres. He started with small means but has improved, buying more land and stock, building larger barns and better houses each year until he has one of the finest and best equipped and regulated farms in the United States. His grain, clover and grass fields are as fine as any in Pennsylvania or New York. His stock is well kept and creditable in number and quality; they will compare favorably with the best in Ohio, Michigan or any part of the Northwest. His cotton fields are beautiful beyond description. He has every convenience in the way of modern machinery. He has built and equipped a railroad from his farm to Athens, Ga., and has erected a cottonseed oil mill, fertilizer factory and conducts a general mercantile business to supply tenants and employees. The farming operations of Mr. Smith were enough to convince me that all the soil needed was careful cultivation and constant attention to yield three times the profit of any in the Northern or New England States. Recently I met Mr. J. T. Patrick, of Southern Pines, N. C., who is a noted worker for Southern development and perhaps one of the best posted men in the South in regard to the developments going on in that section. I spoke to him about Mr. Smith. Mr. Patrick said: "I have seen his farm and it is a credit to Mr. Smith and the South, but there are many more Southerners who are doing as well as he, but I suppose you have not seen their farms. Major R. S. Tucker, of Wake county, Dr. W. R. Capehart, of Bertie county, and thousands of others scattered over the South are owners and managers of as fine farms as you can find in any part of the United States. You Northern people do not get out from the line of railroad to see what our people are doing, and we are generally judged, condemned and sentenced by people who ride through our country at the rate of forty miles an hour on a Pullman palace car and do not know the difference between a cotton plant and a stalk of buckwheat." There is a great deal of truth in what Mr. Patrick said. Northern men who come South to learn ought to come down prepared to stay long enough to go into the country and see the farms and not judge the South from a poorly conducted farm, but from those managed with intelligence." Source: Letters from Northern and Western Farmers, Giving Their Experience in the South; The Southern States, March 1864 by Richard H. Edmonds.

How Tax Records Help the Genealogist

Tax Records The tax digests in any given county in the State of Georgia provides essential data to the researcher as it lists all of the parcels of land which the person owned and in what counties. In Georgia, one can easily define the acquisition of properties from lotteries and the approximate date simply by noting the amount of acreage in the tax record. For example, the 1805 and 1807 land lotteries offered 202-1/2 acres in Baldwin and Wilkinson Counties; and 490 acres in Wayne County (1805). During 1820: Appling (490), Early (250); Gwinnett (250); Habersham (250) (490); Hall (250); Irwin (490); Rabun (490)(250) and Walton (250). The 1827 Land Lottery gave 202-1/2 acres in Carroll, Coweta, Lee, Muscogee and Troup. The 1832 lottery consisted of 202-1/2 acres in Cass (now Bartow), Cherokee, Cobb, Floyd, Forsyth, Gilmer, Lumpkin, Murray, Paulding and Union Counties. These are all Indian lands belonging to the Creeks and Cherokees. There was also a lottery encompassing North Georgia lands formerly owned by the Cherokees where people drew for 40-acre gold lots and one can assume the occupation was "gold miner."

The best route to information is to first search the lottery records, then the tax digests in specific counties. In many instances, the names of waterways and creeks are provided, also the type of timber on the land, and the name of the adjoining landowner (if there was one). The digests were not indexed and are listed by districts. It is a good idea to search through the time period during which the families resided in that county. In the back of each book is a section of "Defaulters". That is important in discerning whether the family had moved on, or died. A good rule of thumb is that any person listed as a defaulter who was 60+ years of age, probably died in that county. A thorough study of the tax digests becomes essential especially if no other books survived for that county. This is where the tracts of land of each person having the same surname should be compared from one year to the next. For example, John Smith was listed for a number of years. Then, there was an administrator beside his name. (This is the approximate date of his death). Then, following through the years, another persons with the same surname has that exact acreage added to his accounting. This would be an heir, probably the oldest son. A good practice is to make copies of the digest for later comparisons between probable heirs, neighbors and friends. John Smith may appear many times, but how do you know if he is the same John Smith? The answer is to always take notes of the neighbors. Everyone listed in the same district are friends and relatives. It is the community as well as the history of the times!


Traced Genealogies:
Clarke County Families

Barber Barwick Clarke Day
Ernest Freeman Hagin Humphreys
Hunnicutt Jackson Parr Sledge
Strong Thomas White


Georgia History Unfolds in Old Wills







Clarke County Wills, Estates, Marriages, Newspapers, Tax Digests


Clarke County

Lucy Cobb Institute, Athens, Georgia, founded ca 1859 by Thomas R. Cobb.

Clarke County was established in 1801; named for General Elijah Clarke of Revolutionary War fame. A year after cession of the land which became Clarke County from the Cherokee Indians in 1783, the State endowed the future University of Georgia with 40,000 acres of land near an old trading path. The old school pre-dates the Revolutionary War but was not created by the Georgia legislature until 1785.Abraham Baldwin was chosen as president. The school actually began the same year as the county, 1801, with the purchase of land for a campus. At this time the surrounding town of Athens had not been formed and would not be formed until the first class graduated in 1804. Among the earliest students were men who would shape the future of the state before, after and during the Civil War. Crawford W. Long, medical pioneer, Alexander "Little Alex" Stephens, who became Vice President of the Confederate State of America, and Howell Cobb, Speaker of the House and candidate for President of the United States, were but a few of the famous names associated with the school. Early Clarke County Settlers: William Shaw, Joseph Clarkson, Joseph Kramer, William Echols, Richard Lewis, Richard Cole, Absalom Echols, Joshua Baker, Bussel Brown, Jeremiah Melton, Wyley Roberts, James Hayes, William Daniel, Edward Hagin, Samuel Jackson, Clark Hudson, George Evans, Levin Hudson, Wootson Allen, Joseph Henderson, John Dorman, Peter Calaway, Edward Moor, James Downs, Jonathan Hightower, James Keeth, Isaac Downs, David McCulloch, James Naull, Gabriel Hubbard, John Burnett, James Gilmore, David Duke, Harry Mitchel, Drewry Brewer, Henry Grier, and others.

Probate Records Available to Members of Georgia Pioneers

Abstracts of Wills
  • 1803-1822
  • 1822-1842
Images of Wills and Estates 1842 to 1859

Names: Akeridge, Ezekiel,Barber, James,Baxter, Thomas,Beardin, Aaron, Branch, Dicey,Burnett, Caroline,Camak, James,Carter, William,Cros, Aaron,Daniell, Josiah,Edwards, Solomon,Espy, John,Greer, Thomas, Hales, Willis,Huff, Henry,Jackson, Stephen,Jennings, James,Jones, William,King, Sarah,Mayne, John,Newton, Catharine,Oliver, John Sr., Payne, Edward,Pittard, Humphrey,Pope, Mary,Price, Elizabeth,Stroud, Martha,Tinney, Elizabeth,Wells, Sarah,Williams, William,Williamson, Sarah.

Images of Wills 1859 to 1885

Names: Bauer, William ; Baxter, Mary ; Biggane, Lucy ; Billups, John ; Bishop, Edward;; Bishop, Thomas ; Bradford, Mary ; Branch, James ; Brown, Dolly ; Burnett, Mary ; Chancey, John ; Chase, Allen ; Church, M.; Cobb, Lucy ; Conger, Abijah; Cook, Zadock; Cox, Elizabeth ; Crawford, Julia; Crawford, Susan; Crawford, Susannah ; Crawford, Thomas; Daniell, Francis Marion; Darsey, William ; Darcey, James; Davenport, Henry; Dean, John; Delany, Henry; Delany, William ; Doster, Francis ; Dupree, Lucy ; Edwards, Henry ; Edwards, Richard ; Epps, William ; Fambrough, John; Fellows, George; Fellows, Mary; Gober, William ; Gober, Wesley; Goff, Nancy; Golding, Susan ; Gorly, Mary; Gray, Jeremiah ; Greer, Corporal ; Griffith, John; Hall, Asbury ; Hamilton, Sarah ; Hardiman, Benjamin; Harper, Anselm ; Harris, James ; Harris, John; Harris, Martin ; Harris, Paulina ; Harris, Sarah; Hellbrook, Nathan ; Henderson, Matthew ; Henry, Elizabeth ; Hoyt, Nathan; Hudson, George; Hull, Henry; Hutchinson, Peter; Jackson, Hillman ; Jackson, John; Jenkins, James; Jennings, Giles; Jennings, Henry ; Jennings, James ; Johnson, John Calvin ; Keisler, Hugh; Kittle, William ; Klutts, Jacob; Lampkin, Henry ; Leam, William; Lee, Judith ; Ligers, Caesr; Lowe, John H. ; Lumpkin, Edward ; Lumpkin, Frank; Lumpkin, Samuel ; Macey, Albert ; Malin, Phoebe; Marks, Thomas; Matthews, Martha; Kinney, Alfred ; Mitchell, Giles; Mitchell, J. W. ; Mitchell, William ; Moore, Eleanore ; Moore, Thomas; Morton, Joseph ; Moss, John ; Moss, Thomas; Muker, Christopher ; Mygatt, George; Nance, John ; Newton, Eliza ; Osborn, John; Paine, Seaborne (colored) ; Pelleford, Louis ; Reese, Charles ; Ramsey, Bolitha E. ; Savage, Susan ; Sikes, Zechariah; Smith, Robert; Sparks, Ann; Sparks, Thomas ; Stephenson, Henry; Stovall, Pleasant; Stroud, Mark; Stroud, William ; Tayler, Michael ; Taylor, Robert; Thomas, William ; Thompson, Middleton; Thrasher, Burton; Vickers, Joshua; Vincent, Isaac ; Wade, Thomas ; Wane, Edward ; Ward, Matthew A. ; Wells, Mary; White, John ; White, William; Williams, Mary; Witherspoon, Elizabeth; Woodson, Alexander ; Wray, Thomas ; Yerby, Burnell ; Zach, Silas

Images of Estates 1827 to 1835

Names: Beal, Zephaniah; Beardin, Richard; Bonner, Allen ;Bostick, Rebecca; Broadnax, William; Cheatham, Anthony; Chislom, Appleton ; Crowe, Stephen ; Doran, Andrew; Daugherty, Rebecca; Duke, Beverley; Early, Rhoda ; Easley, Roderick ; Foster, John ; Fulton, Margaret; Garner, Joel; Gordon, Robert ; Gourley, Jonathan ; Graham, Andrew ; Harper, John; Harris, Jeremiah ; Harris, Thomas ; Hester, Stephen ; Hill, Isaac; Holder, John ; Holt, Cicero; Huff, Wiley; Humphreys, Uriah; Irwin, James ; James, Henry; Langford, James ; Lumpkin, George; May, Levi ; Mayfield, Thomas; Maxey, Edward, orphans of ; McCollough, William; Mitchell, William ; Moore, Francis ; Moore, Robert; Nisbet, James ; Nunnally, John ; Parton, Vernia ; Phinizy, Marcus; Pittard, Samuel ; Price, William ; Puryear, Peter, orphans of ; Ransom, Reuben; Richardson, John, orphan of Dave; Sibbald, Jane ; Smith, Mary A.; Starkes, Philip, orphans of ; Strickland, John ; Tarpley, Joseph ; Thomas, John ; Thomas, Levin ; Trammell, Robert ; Watts, Samuel ; Whitton, John ; Williamson, Ann; Williby, Elijah ; Wise, Patterson; Wooldridge, orphans; Wright, John



Images of Estates Book G, 1835 to 1845

Testators: Beal, Zephaniah; Boram, George W.; Bostick, Rebekah, Mrs.; Brightwell, John; Cheatham, Anthony; Chester, Stephen; Conger, Hedges; Croxton, James; Dalton, Lewis; Elder, Sterling and Howell; Flournoy, Elizabeth, orphan; Flournoy, Howell, orphan of; Hodges, James, orphans of; Holt, Cicero; Lamar, Zachariah; Lee, John; Ligon, Robert; Maddox, Joseph; Mann, Jonathan, orphans of; Meriwether orphans; Merritt, Berryman G.; Moore, William; Nisbet, Penelope, Mrs.; Osborn, John; Phinizy, Marco, orphans of; Pinson, Thomas; Pressley, Samuel P.; Preston, William; Puryear, John; Puryear, Peter, orphan; Reynolds, Patrick; Robertson, Fryar; Robinson, James; Sheats, Nicholas; Sibbald, Jane, Mrs.; Simonton, Theopholis;Stephens, David; Sturgis, Henry; Taylor, Sarah Ann, orphan; Thomas, Drury; Thompson, Thomas B.; Tindall, William; Whitlow, John Sr.; Williams, Joel, orphans of; Williby, Robert; Williby, William; Winstead, Alexander Indexes to Probate Records
  • Index to Will Book A, 1803-1822.
  • Index to Will Book B, 1822-1842.
  • Index to Will Book C, 1842-1859.
  • Index to Will Book D, 1859-1885.
  • Index to Will Book E, 1885-1911.
  • Index to Clarke County Ordinary Records, estates (no date).
  • Index to Unbound Estates, 1797-1949.
  • Index to Mixed Estates, 1799-1819. < li>Index to Mixed Estates, 1807-1818.
  • Index to Mixed Estates, 1815-1827.
  • Index to Mixed Estates, 1827-1830.
  • Mixed Estates, Book E (1827-1830)
  • Mixed Estates, Book F (1835-1845)
  • Mixed Estates (1837-1847)
  • Mixed Estates (1842-1867)
  • Deed Book A, 1802-1804.
Miscellaneous
  • Finch, William, LWT (1811).
  • Hagin, Edward, Appraisement, Sale, etc. (1805), Bk 1799-1819, pp. 373-377.
  • Hagin, Edward, deed (1802).
  • James Hagins, Estate.
  • Marriages 1807 to 1820
  • Marriage Index 1805-1821
  • Marriage Index 1815-1821
  • Marriage Licenses Index 1821 to 1838
  • Marriage Licenses Index 1838 to 1867
  • Marriages from newspapers 1885-1886
Tax Digests (digital images)
  • 1802
  • 1803
  • 1804
  • 1805
  • 1810


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