The Militia Won the Backwoods during the Revolutionary WarAfter the Revolutionary War, many soldiers received land grants in Georgia for service rendered. The struggles and hardships, Continental Army and Local Milities, drew farmers and planters alike off their land for the great cause of freedom. The days of the Indian instruction to add a fish to each hole in the field to nourish corn had long passed. Before the war even began, soils were depleted of vital nutriets and money crops like tobacco and cotton had to be rotated. That meant that land lay fallow for several years before replanting. Meanwhile, several generations of the same families were still occupying the old home place. It was time for the new generations to move on. And this is exactly what they did. In 1781, General George Washington, commanded a force of some 17,000 French and Continental troops, and marched on Yorktown where he commenced a siege against British General Lord Charles Cornwallis.
Three Gordon BrothersThree Gordon brothers settled in Crawford County and purchased large tracts of land adjoining one another. James Gordon built a brick home above a spring which was later owned by his grandson. Thomas Gordon located across the creek just above the spring where the Indians had a council cabin (a double log house) on the present Lafayette Pike. This must be Beaverdam Creek near the site of the old Creek Agency. It is also the site where the young men of the section came together during the Civil War and organized a company of 110 men with Clark Gordon as captain. At the close of the war Clark Gordon was promoted to the rank of Colonel. The brothers had a worthy father, Thomas Gordon, who served during the Revolutionary War as a private in the 6th Virginia Regiment.
The Creek Agency ReserveBenjamin Hawkins came into this area in 1803 and developed a compound on the Flint River. The compound included a shop and plantation, which became known as the Creek Agency Reserve. The site was located near Macon and doubtless served as one of the forts along the frontier during the Creek War of 1812 to 1813. Although Hawkins was well liked by the local Creeks, he believed that he could persuade the natives to embrace an European-American way of life. He settled disputes and resolved many issues concerning white settlements in Creek territory. When he died at the Reserve in 1816. he was replaced by David B. Mitchell.
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The Difficult Meanderings of Native Indians?Native Americans were frequently having war with other tribes. Some of the smaller tribes (or losers) were swallowed up and lost in identify. They were frequently on the move. Records were not kept of births, deaths, etc. They did not marry white women, but sometimes captured them as slaves. There are a few published journals on the Gutenburg.org website written by slaves. The story told of life among the Indians during the 18th century was that after the capture the tribes were always on the move or having war with other tribes. White families had no chance of retrieving their women. Benjamin Hawkins, a Creek agent in Georgia during its colonization, kept his own journals. Thus, the materials to be examined are those kept by Indian Agents (if one can find such items) who wrote in English and sometimes clarified the English version of an Indian name. These agents were in Charleston, South Carolina and Savannah, Georgia where all of the records survive. I strongly recommend reading the deeds and affidavits (colonial writing) to gain a historical knowledge of the times and discover more information. Interestingly, there are affidavits (given by co-pirates) in Charleston concerniing the capture of the pirate, Captain William Kidd! Samuel Eveleigh of Charleston widely traded with the new Georgia Colony, and there is information to be gathered about his adventures. The wealth of information found in early deeds and minutes of the court provide a bounty of undisclosed iinformation.
Experienced Genealogists Research in Several StatesAll of a person's ancestors did not reside in one State. After coming to this country, they moved around with great regularity. That is because land was so important to survival. The habit of allowing fields to remain fallow for two years or more was helpful, but not enough. A good rich, loamy soil was required to sustain generations of families. In Virginia, it was tobacco which quickly depleted the soil, and soon as ther American Revolution, families were on the move. Genealogists, look to the land grants of these soldiers (for service) and subsent land lotteries in Georgia. Many families drew and won land in the lotteries, according to the number of persons in the family. That is why it is important to examine Tax Digests, which list the number of acres and the county. We trace the movement of our ancestors through deed records, tax digests, land grants and lotteries. As families moved along, it becomes necessary to examine the county records everywhere that they resided. This is where marriage records were recorded, deeds given, and estates probated. Also, a close examination of local cemeteries and churches is indicated. Why? Because burial records and church registers also tell the story. Georgia Pioneers has a vast collection of county records and includes the states of Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. It is easy to search from one state to the next using the same portal.
How to Turn Marginal Genealogy into Real GenealogyAs we continue our research, we find ourselves jotting down tidbits of information, thinking that it might be useful later. And it is, as more data reaches our computer. But what kind tidbits are most important? Witnesses to deeds and adjoining properties; every name in the old part of the cemetery, especially those adjoining your family plots. Names in the same district as your ancestor written down according to the order of the entries, along with such details as acreage, adjoining neighbors and waters. Purchasers of estate sales as some of these people married the daughters (examine these names in the county marriage records). Remarkably, all of these people were the old neighborhood! You will be amazed at how this information provides a better understand of the life and times of your ancestors, plus makes all the puzzle parts fit.
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Crawford County Wills and EstatesCrawford County was formed in 1822 from Houston County and and out of the Creek Indian lands. Later part of Macon and Talbot counties were added. Crawford County was named for William H. Crawford, who was the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury when the county was created. Knoxville, Georgia is no longer a municipality, however there are several buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places, including the Old Crawford County Courthouse established in 1831 and the old Crawford County Jail established in 1882.
Crawford County Records Available to Members of Georgia Pioneers
- Marriages 1823 to 1832
Indexes to Probate Records
- Will Book A (1835 to 1857)
- Will Book B (1852 to 1894)
- Bonds, Book 2 (1874 to 1898)
- Inventories and Appraisements (1836 to 1837)
Online Images of Wills (1835 to 1852)Testators: Ammons, Stephen ; Ansley, Marlin ; Armstrong, William ; Barnes, Littleton ; Beasley, David ; Bradford, Nathaniel ; Bray, John ; Brown, David Causey, Lemon M. LWT (1859); Causey, Lemon M. LWT (1849); ; Cleveland, William ; Collier, Benjamin ; Commander, Samuel ; Culpepper, Daniel ; Davis, John ; Dennis, Isaac, Sr. ; Dennis, Samuel ; Drew, Jesse ; Fudge, Elizabeth ; Fudge, Jacob ; Futrill, Abraham ; Griffin, Daniel ; Griffin, Rebecca ; Hail, James ; Hall, Robert ; Hammock, Mary ; Hannon, Henry ; Harris, James ; Hicks, Robert ; Hobs, Daniel ; Holloman, Zachariah ; Hunter, Nathaniel ; Janus, John ; Johnson, William ; Jordan, John ; King, John ; May, James ; Mobly, Lewis ; Moran, Jesse ; Morris, Benjamin ; Patterson, William ; Preston, David ; Reese, Reuben ; Rowel, William ; Rushing, Peter ; Sawyer, Lewis ; Simmons, Catharine ; Smith, Anthony ; Stone, Erastus ; Terrell, David ; Walker, Margaret ; Watkins, Wright ; White, Sharrard ; Williams, John ; Wright, James Wright, Robert
Images of Estates. Inventories, Vouchers, Guardianships, Estates 1833 to 1834Bateman, Bryan | Blake, Nancy | Bulloch, Richard | Cook, John | Estes, Allen | Garrison, David | Glover, John | Hammack, William | Hicks, Amos | Hicks, Daniel | Hill, Robert | Jones, Cornelius | Lessel, John | Marshall, Chesley | Mills, Jesse | Mobley, Sampson | Northern, William | Powell, Richmond | Prosser, Jesse | Richardson, John | Rick, John | Smith orphans | Sullivan, Hosea | Tarver, Henry | Underwood, William | Williams, James
- Causey, Lemon M. LWT (1859)
- Causey, Lemon M. LWT (1849)
- Wadsworth, Melcher (deed)
Memoirs of Georgia (pubished 1895
- Settlers in Crawford County (1895)
Traced Genealogies of Crawford County Families
Remember the Day?Remember...
- When no one locked their doors?
- We sat on the front porch counting different makes of cars? In those days models like the Cadillac coupe de ville were more glamorous.
- Everyone had a front porch and we were invited to sip lemonade and chit chat?
- When we acquainted ourselves with neighbors by walking the streets?
- Saturday morning cartoons and newsreels?
- Driveways were too narrow for anything but the Model-Ts?
- Streets were made of cobblestone and bricks?
- Trolleys and street car lines were draped across overhead power lines?
- We dressed in front of coal furnaces?
- Winter sleeping meant a stack of quilts?
- It was too hot to sleep in summers?
- You punched a button to turn on a single overhead light bulb?
- Turning out lights after leaving a room to conserve electricity?
- The ice trucks which delivered a chunk of ice to the old icebox?
- When dry cleaners delivered your pressed laundry in a van?
- When you collected coat hangers from the neighbors and sold them for a penny each to local dry cleaners?
- The school halloween carnival on the play ground?
- When the whole neighborhood passed out candy on halloween.
- When medicine bottles went unsealed and were easily opened.
- Swimming in a pond of tadpoles and lilypads?
- Hitching a ride on a train.
- When Buffalo Bill brought his act to Piedmont Park in Atlanta?
- Food rationing and victory gardens?
- During WW II when marshals patroled neighborhoods reminding us to turn out lights.
- Old Victorian houses with pitched roofs, chimneys and dormer windows stood on every block.
- Houses had walk-in attics.
- When railroad tracks criss-crossed thoroughfares.
- When electric fans were first used in homes?
- The air conditioning unit in the window?
- The ranch-style homes of the 1950s?
- Stick shifts and hard-to-turn steering wheels.
- Rumble seats?