The Adams Family Went With The Union

Wednesday, March 22, 2017 - by John Wilson

When the Civil War broke out, members of the Adams family in Hamilton County went with the Union. Hamilton Adams joined the Sixth Mounted Infantry that was organized in Chattanooga, and his son, James M. Adams, became a sergeant in the same unit. McKinney Adams, a brother of Hamilton Adams, was in the Sixth Infantry as was a younger McKinney Adams, who was the eldest son of Hamilton Adams. Melville Adams, a nephew of Hamilton and McKinney Adams, was also in the Sixth Mounted Infantry.

All these Adams men returned from the war unscathed. Hamilton Adams was in his forties when he entered the war. Civil War records show that the younger McKinney Adams was six feet tall, while Melvin Adams was only 5'3'' tall. The Adams men mostly had dark hair, eyes and complexion.

The Adams family was in Hamilton County at an early date, settling in the Hixson area near the Hixsons and Loveladys.

Simon Adams had married Eleanor Lovelady. Simon Adams died about 1829 soon after the move to Hamilton County. Eleanor Lovelady Adams was left to rear a family of four sons and two daughters. The sons, in addition to Hamilton and McKinney, were Franklin and Sevier. The daughters were Rebecca and Clarissa who married John Brown, son of Berry and Christina Brown. Eleanor Adams apparently died about the time of the Civil War.

Hamilton Adams married Susan Hixson, a daughter of Ephraim and Margaret Hixson. Their children included McKinney, Margaret, James M., Ephraim, Simon, Tennessee, Mary Elizabeth, Rachel and George H. James M. and McKinney Adams married Levi sisters, daughters of George Levi of Hixson.

McKinney married Nancy Jane Levi in 1872, while James M. married Lavinia Levi in 1870. Ephraim married Ellen Burkhart, Tennessee married James Dowlen, Mary Elizabeth married Julius P. Quinn, and Rachel married William Hopkins.

The Union veteran James M. Adams lived until 1930 when he was 82. He resided at Union Springs. The children of James M. Adams and Lavinia included Margaret, George H. John McKinney, Sally, Mary, Susan, Noah and J.N. Margaret married George Return Brock, and Sally married William P. Gann. George H. married Sarah Colbaugh, and John McKinney married Ida Beavers. Noah married Myrtle Moody. Mary and Susan were not married. George H. Adams lived near Brown's Chapel. He died in 1934. His sons were Robert who married Ruby Neal, Simon, Fred who married Grace Wilhoit, Lonas who married Marthia Richie, and George H. Jr. who married Lorene Saines. The daughters were Rosa, Mildred and Eva.

The children of John McKinney Adams and Ida Beavers were Beulah who married Henry Franklin Gladden, Charles Hoy who married Virginia Henry, James Hiram who married Lelia McCurdy, and John Clifford who married Lois Campbell.  Simon Adams farmed on Moccasin Bend and later he was a resdient of Stringer Street. He lived until 1901. He had a son, Summerfield Adams. His daughters were Annie who married James D. Keef, Laura and Stella.

McKinney Adams and his wife, Mary Eliza, also had a large family. The children were Winnie Caroline, Simeon T., Burrell, Sevier Taylor, Rebecca and Simon Monroe. Winnie married William Seward Rawlston, and they lived at Gold Point. Burrell Adams was a prominent farmer who lived in Hixson all his life. He married Margaret Fryar in 1870. He died in 1937. His children were Mary Ellen, Mrs. Minnie England, Mrs. Florence Plumlee and John Taylor. John Taylor Adams married Lou Rebecca Hixson. Sevier Taylor Adams married Nancy Barker. He lived until 1943 and she died in 1939. Rebecca Adams married Henry F. Shelley, and they lived at Sherman Heights in East Chattanooga. Sevier Taylor Adams was living with his nephew, Taylor Shelley, on Glass Street in East Chattanooga when he died at 1943 at the age of 91. Nancy Barker Adams had died in 1939 when they were living on Campbell Street.

Simon Monroe Adams wa also known as Squire Adams since he once served on the Quarterly Court. He held the record for longest continuous service as a deputy sheriff -- almost 40 years. He lived in town at 112 Cherry St. He and his wife, Rosa, had a daughter, Minnie Taylor Adams who married M.G. Keown. The Keowns lived in Highland Park. Simon Monroe Adams had met his wife, Rosa Haydon, during the yellow fever epidemic of 1878. The Haydons, who were originally from Virginia, had gone out from Chattanooga to Hixson to try to escape the fever. Simon Monroe Adams died in 1928.

Franklin Adams married Julia A. Rogers, daughter of the early Hamilton County settler Henry Rogers. They had 14 children. They were James who died young, Melville, Daniel, Henry, Ellen, Carroll, Rebecca, Penelope, Sophronia, America, Ann. Leitha, Mary ""Mollie'' and Franklin A.  Melville Adams became a teacher after his war service, then he was a county official. He later was the postmaster at the Chickamauga post office. The name of this postal stop was changed to Melville in his honor in 1878, then to Daisy in 1883. He remained the postmaster there through 1881. He was also the railroad station agent.

Melville Adams died in 1930 when he was 84. He and his wife, Mary E., had a son, Clarence Melville of Hixson, and daughter, Mrs. J.Q. Peacock of Jacksonville, Fla. Clarence Melville Adams worked at Peerless Woolen Mills. Penelope Adams married J.R. Hays. America Adams married C.W. Lovelady, and they lived in Alabama.

Several of the daughters of Franklin and Julia Adams remained unmarried, including Sophronia "Fronia,'' Leitha and Mollie. Fronia Adams was a schoolteacher and a popular music teacher in North Chattanooga. Her home was at 414 Thompson St. She died in 1933 when she was 72. Mollie Adams was living on Tremont Street when she died in 1956. Franklin A. Adams, youngest in the family, was living at 5605 Alabama Ave. in St. Elmo when he died in 1931 at the age of 57. Sevier Adams was the fourth of the Adams brothers. He and his wife, Milly, had no children. Sevier Adams died in April of 1891, not long after the passing of Hamilton Adams. His wife, Milly, passed away the following year.

Franklin Adams died in November of 1891. At the time he had a "prosperous farm'' on Dallas Road. McKinney Adams lived until 1907. It was said he had been in Hamilton County all of his 85 years and ""remembered when the Indians constituted the principal population of this section. He saw Chattanooga grow from its beginnings.'' Susan Hixson Adams, wife of Hamilton Adams, died in 1896. Julia A. Rogers adams, wife of Franklin Adams, died in 1911. She was living in Hill City (North Chattanooga) at the time, but was buried at Jackson's Chapel near her old home. Mary Eliza, wife of McKinney Adams, lived until 1916.

There is still an Adams Road in Hixson, and a number of Adams descendants here. R. Gene Adams of Hixson is a great-grandson of McKinney Adams and Nancy J. Levi. His grandparents were Thomas Adams and Lou Jackson, and his father was Walter Monroe Adams. Earl Dowlen long owned a portion of the Hamilton Adams farm at Hixson. He was a grandson of James Dowlen and Tennessee Adams. Inez Hartman McConnell, wife of Dr. Sam McConnell, was a granddaughter of John Taylor Adams.

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