Interesting Chattanooga Checks From Late 1800s Are In Collection From Old Title Guaranty Building

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Some interesting checks written in the late 1800s in Chattanooga were in the collection found when workmen were tearing out parts of the old Title Guaranty and Trust building on Walnut Street recently.

The checks were written by attorney Lewis Minor Coleman, who once had an upstairs office at the small brick building that is currently being restored.

Coleman was born in Virginia in the first year of the Civil War.

His father was a Confederate Lt. Col. who died at Vicksburg. His mother was the granddaughter of John Marshall, a Chief Justice of the United States who played a significant role in the development of the American legal system. Another prominent ancestor was General Henry Dearborn.

Lewis Minor Coleman came to Chattanooga in late 1885 and began what would be an impressive career. In 1910, he was listed as general counsel at Chattanooga of the Southern Express Company. He worked with the Title Guarantee & Trust Company. It is likely the checks were stored here when he joined the firm.

Coleman attended the University of Virginia with John Thomas Lupton.Following a visit to Coleman's home in Chattanooga in 1887, Lupton also settled in Chattanooga. He went on to make a very lucrative investment in Coca-Cola bottling.

In 1905, Coleman purchased a home at 1 Cravens Terrace from John Cravens. It is listed in the National Register of Historic Places: LINK

Coleman succumbed to influenza during the pandemic of 1918.

A.W. Chambliss remembered him as "a genial, courteous gentleman, generous to a fault, absolutely loyal to every friend and every trust. He lived as nearly without reproach as any man I have ever known."  

The ornate checks from several different Chattanooga banks are made out to some of the city's leading figures.

Payees featured:

  • Garnett Andrews
  • Adolph Ochs
  • Julius Ochs
  • E. M. Dodson
  • J. Fred Ferger
  • W. F. Fischer
  • J. B. Frazier
  • M. M. Hope
  • A. W. Judd
  • T. M. McConnell
  • W. B. Mitchell
  • M. B. Parham
  • C. T. Raymond
  • Joseph H. Warner
  • F. F. Wiehl
  • C. E. James
  • J. W. White
  •  

    Sam Hall has scanned many of the checks for posting on his Chattanooga Deepzoom site.

    They can be viewed here: http://deepzoomchattanooga.com/historicchecks.php


    Latest Hamilton County Arrest Report

    Latest Hamilton County Arrest Report

    Police Charge Gang Member With Gun Violations After Tying Him To Car Used In Several Recent Robberies


    Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: AMBROCIO RAMIREZ, JUAN 1535 DODDS AVE CHATTANOOGA, 37404 Age at Arrest: 42 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga DRIVING ... (click for more)

    Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: BEENE, JASON TODD 203 4TH ST NW FORT PAYNE, 35967 Age at Arrest: 41 years old Arresting Agency: Tenn Highway Patrol DRIVING ... (click for more)

    Police have arrested a gang member on gun charges after tying him to a car used in several recent robberies. Thomas Dewayne Sales, 21, of 1705 Wilcox Blvd., was charged with two counts of ... (click for more)


    Breaking News

    Latest Hamilton County Arrest Report

    Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: AMBROCIO RAMIREZ, JUAN 1535 DODDS AVE CHATTANOOGA, 37404 Age at Arrest: 42 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga DRIVING ON ROADWAYS LANED FOR TRAFFIC, VIOLATION IMPROPER TURN (MOTOR VEHICLE) LEAVING SCENE OF ACCIDENT W/DAMAGE TO VEHICLE DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE NO PROOF OF INSURANCE DRIVING WITHOUT ... (click for more)

    Latest Hamilton County Arrest Report

    Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: BEENE, JASON TODD 203 4TH ST NW FORT PAYNE, 35967 Age at Arrest: 41 years old Arresting Agency: Tenn Highway Patrol DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE SUSPENDED LICENSE (NONRESIDENT) POSSESSION OF CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE --- BLACK, JOHNATHON JOSEPH 1020 W 37TH ST CHATTANOOGA, 37410 Age at Arrest: 23 years ... (click for more)

    Opinion

    Why Does Walden Need A Large Grocery Store? - And Response (2)

    The town of Walden has a population of 2,118 people. What do those citizens need with a 49,000 square foot grocery store? Or with 10,000 square feet of commercial office space? Or a fuel island? Or increased tractor trailer traffic with proportional damage to the road up and down the mountain? Or multiple traffic lights at the “W” Road intersection and at Timesville Road? When ... (click for more)

    Roy Exum: This Ain’t Gonna’ Work

    When Governor Bill Lee talks about education, or the lack of it, I’ll listen. He’s the guy who, when he found his newly-hired employees were wanting, his thriving Lee Company in Nashville started its own vocational school and paid them to learn. The investment was brilliant and the outcome obvious. But now comes the bigger gamble, vouchers for some and, for others, charter schools ... (click for more)

    Sports

    Softball: Baylor Beats Summit To Claim Lady Trojan Invitational Gold

    Baylor defeated Summit, 3-0, Saturday to win the Lady Trojans Invitational Gold Bracket championship at Warner Park on a cold, windy afternoon. The Lady Red Raiders came up with a run in the third and two more in the fourth of a five-inning showdown. In the third, Cadashia Collins drew a one-out walk and went to second on Emily Rye’s groundout. MaKayla Packer stroked an RBI ... (click for more)

    Sale Creek Wins Soggy Yellow Jacket Classic

    It was a miserable afternoon to be sitting at Lookout Valley Elementary School’s O’Mary-Conard Field for the last three games of the annual Yellow Jacket Classic softball tournament, but Sale Creek coach Clifford Kirk was just happy for his Sale Creek girls to have a chance to play. It was a worthwhile weekend for the Lady Panthers as they won their pool by winning all three ... (click for more)