Complete Edition Of The 20-Part Samuel Williams Story By John Wilson

Tuesday, April 9, 2019 - by John Wilson

(Since the completion of the recent 20-part series on Samuel Williams, the "Father of Chattanooga," by John Wilson, several readers have asked for the entire series to be in one place. Here it is:)

"Father Of Chattanooga" Samuel Williams Was Illiterate, Lousy Bookkeeper, But He Had A Vision

The man known as "the father of Chattanooga" was illiterate and a lousy bookkeeper, but he had a vision about the future of a little place on the Tennessee River surrounded by mountains in all directions.

That is the portrait of Samuel Williams that emerges from hundreds of fascinating pages of a long-running Williams lawsuit that were found last March by workers remodeling an old building across from the County Courthouse. 

Historian Zella Armstrong said of Samuel Williams, "He was first, evidently, to see the future possibilities of the place." 

She added, "Capt. Williams saw the future possibilities of the village, and in 1837, he began to organize a company to buy real estate from the citizen occupants."

A business associate of Samuel Williams said. "He first seemed to have grasped the idea that there was a grand future to some city located on the Tennessee River, and that Ross's Landing was the place. He it was who interested and inspired others with his own faith in its future." 

Samuel Williams arrived in 1833 when the territory south of the Tennessee River was still Indian territory. But that did not stop him from moving his brother's store from the foot of Walden's Ridge across the river to Ross's Landing. G&S Williams was set up on the site where Cherokee Chief John Ross and his brother, Lewis Ross, had a trading post two decades earlier.

Samuel Williams soon formed a fast friendship and business partnership with Col. James A. Whiteside, who captured the same vision and was adroit at putting the scheme into effect.

Col. Whiteside, in one of several depositions he gave in the lawsuit, said, "I became acquainted with G.W. and Samuel Williams in 1837. In 1838, I moved from Bledsoe County to Ross's Landing (now Chattanooga). They were in business as merchants and general partners in trading. I lived near them and that year I think entered in partnership with them as merchants and traders and in the purchase of occupancy rights and preferences of entry, and in the entry of lands in the Ocoee District."

After the vote in Congress to forcibly remove the Cherokees from their native land, the Tennessee General Assembly in November 1837 created the Ocoee Land District. An entry taker's office was set up at Cleveland - it being a more sizable place than Ross's Landing.

The price of the land was set at $7.50 per acre. Those who had moved onto the land had preference.

At the time of the creation of the Ocoee Land District, only 53 people were living in what later became downtown Chattanooga. These included Samuel Williams, who was residing in a house on Market Street.

Still another intrepid early Ross's Landing settler was Capt. John Pomfret Long, who also was quick to recognize the landing's future prospects. He felt that "the Iron Horse" would eventually break through the mountains and reach this place. He said, "I found here all the requirements to build the future city. Pleasantly situated on the bank of the Tennessee River, with high bold banks extending to the water's edge, which had already been utilized by the Indians as a ferry and boat landing, known far and near as Ross's Landing, being the first high ground and suitable harbor above the mountains. From this central point radiate several valleys. Even the wild buffalo in the dim past with their natural instinct had selected this as their great crossing, as their paths were plainly marked."

Capt. Long said in a deposition, "My first visit to Ross's Landing was about August 1835. The Williams had goods there in partnership. They continued in partnership in goods until the summer of 1841. A portion of the time they had other partners in the concern. They sold out to me in 1841. The stock of goods amounted to $4,700. I paid about $1,000 down. I made a note to James A. Whiteside for $2,400 or $2,500."

Samuel Williams' brother, George Washington Williams Jr., was selected along with Capt. Long and Aaron M. Rawlings by the 28 persons living in the northeast quarter section as commissioners to represent them in connection with the occupant claims.

Col. Whiteside was a lawyer with far-flung contacts. He had gone into the state House in 1835, then was elected senator in 1837. He was among the state's leading railroad boosters and he began to exert every effort he could to insure that rail lines planned south from Nashville and north from (the future) Atlanta had Chattanooga as their terminus.

Whiteside was often on the road on horseback back and forth between Nashville and as far as Baltimore and Augusta. He made one trip by horse to Milledgeville, then the state capital, to lobby for Chattanooga as the ending point for the Western and Atlantic Railroad - rather than Rossville or Harrison.

Col. Whiteside joined forces with the Williams brothers, though he said, "They were uneducated men and without any of the proper qualifications of merchants. Neither of them could keep books properly, nor did either of them know when books were properly kept. They had no order, system, or regularity in their mercantile business. And, when fairly into it, could not from their mode of business tell their actual condition so loosely and negligently did they conduct it and permit it to become blended with all their other transactions."  

Though George Jr. was illiterate, he wanted his two sons to be learned. There is one notation of a payment for tuition at a school at Sulphur Spring, Ala., on Aug. 12, 1842. The payment was from George Williams Jr. to Rogers & Collins for $1.46. 

Col. Whiteside said, "I was also their partner in the following year (1839) in the purchase and sale of stock cattle taken to the Virginia market, and also for one or two subsequent years. Our business was extensive and complicated, and I was in almost constant intercourse with them up to the time of our dissolution and settlement, and indeed up to the time of the death of G.W. and since his death with Samuel Williams up to the present time."

Samuel and G.W. Williams secured a charter for The Hargrove Company on Feb. 5, 1838. Their moneyed backers were Zachariah Hargrove, a banker and attorney from Rome, Ga., and Dr. Tomlinson Fort of Milledgeville, president of the Central Bank of Georgia and a former Congressman.

At the end of 1838, with Col. Whiteside now in town and with the Cherokees gone, a second Williams syndicate was formed. This was the Hines Company. It included Samuel Williams, Col. Whiteside and four Milledgeville men named Farish Carter, Richard Hines, George Lane and John Thomas. Lane was married to the daughter of the wealthy Ker Boyce of Charleston, S.C. Lane soon transferred his interest to Boyce.

Chattanooga afterward, in homage to the outside investment and vote of confidence, had a Boyce Street (later changed to Chestnut) and a Carter Street. Long Street is named for Capt. Long and Williams Street for Samuel Williams. Cowart Street is for Major John Cowart who also gave his deposition in the lawsuit.

Samuel Williams had little capital of his own, but his part of the endeavor was to search out property deals and to manage the far-flung land.

One notation says: "Paid taxes for the Hines lands, the Hargrove lands, the home place and Negroes of G&S Williams."

Col. Whiteside said Samuel Williams "has received the rent on a portion of the lands of the Hargrove and Fort Company. He managed a portion of this land. Nearly all the town lots were unimproved and unproductive. G&S Williams (a partnership of Samuel and George Jr.) owned two ninths of this land and lots. Samuel Williams has had litigation with John Vail and A.E. Blunt on a $1,200 claim by Vail. This was related to the purchase of lands of the Carter, Boyce and Hines Company. Eighty acres was purchased for $1,200 in 1839. Williams agreed to let Thomas Crutchfield have one-half of the interest purchased. Samuel Williams conveyed 40 acres to Boyce in 1842. The Williams firm used the money it received from Boyce for other purposes instead of paying for the land.

Col. Whiteside said, "Hargrove and Fort lands were mostly in Hamilton County and some in Marion County. Renters of Williams land included Lewis Hall, Lewis Tyner, John Tyner, John Sattee and William Cook. I attended to rent of lands below Chickamauga Creek. I owned an interest in all the tracts except the 26-acre one cultivated by Sattee, but Williams had no interest in it. G&S Williams owned two ninths of the tract where Lewis Hall field is situated. They had one-ninth interest in lands rented by Lewis Tyner and one ninth in lands rented by John Tyner and William Cook. Land on the southwest side of the creek was cultivated by Cornelius Milliken. They also owned a portion of land cultivated by Henry Cornett and land cultivated by James Lee. Remaining interest in these lands was by Tomlinson Fort, Ker Boyce, Farish Carter, William B. Wofford, Thomas J. Parks, two of the McAfees, John Bridgman, William Gardenhire and myself. William Gardenhire died before G.W. Williams."

He said the Hargrove Company partners met with Samuel Williams in May 1841 and "he rendered an account. He met with Carter, Fort and the executor for Hargrove (since he had died). After discussing the issue of the division and sale of the lands, it was decided that they should be for a time withheld from the market and remain undivided, and that each one should take evidence of his interest. I wrote a title bond to Carter for his interest and to Fort and the Hargrove executor for theirs. But, before the papers were prepared, Fort and Spurlock (the Hargrove executor) left Chattanooga. Carter remained, got his own bond, and took forward Fort and Hargroves. Before a final close, a discussion arose as to the superintendence of the lands, and the Williamses proposed to take them and keep them clear of all taxes, costs and charges, and in consideration of being allowed the rents. After signing the bonds, a clause was added by James S. Edwards to this effect, but the others did not sign it. They were in Chattanooga on the day G.W. Williams died to get their deeds or make some disposition of their lands. They decided to take their deeds and await a more favorable time for sale. Samuel Williams made these deeds and signed them two days after the death of G.W. Williams.

"There was again discussion of who should oversee the lands for the $20,000 investment of Boyce, Carter and Hines. It was decided that Samuel Williams and myself would oversee them. An agreement was signed by Ker Boyce and Farish Carter on Aug. 13, 1842. The same agreement was made with Dr. Fort - he having by this time obtained the Hargrove interest. 

"Samuel Williams had two-ninths of the land worked by Lewis Hall. In June 1848, there was a division with Carter, Boyce and Fort of the partnership lands. I and Samuel Williams became the owners of the remaining seven ninths of the Hall land. We soon sold to Hall at $20 per acre."

Col. Whiteside in 1850 recalled the earlier land syndicates. "As to who made the contract with Hargrove, Carter and Williams, I cannot inform you as it was made before I had any information of it. But if a contract with Carter, Boyce and Hines is alluded to for the investment on their account of $20,000 in Ocoee and other lands, I made it myself in December 1838. Williams was to advance one-third of the money, Carter one-third and Hargrove one-third. I also had an interest. Samuel Williams was representing George's interest.

"This agreement related to the Cherokee or Ocoee lands. The objective was to operate in river lands and in land contemplated to be near the terminus of the Western and Atlantic Railroad of Georgia on the Tennessee River. In the spring or summer of 1838, the Williams informed me (George first) of their contract with Hargrove and Carter. They desired my services in arranging their land papers. They were both active men but illiterate and did their business generally in a very confused, disorderly and unsystematic manner. I found their transfers defective and their description of land, in most cases, erroneous.

"Having made out a table of their purchases of occupation, I set about correcting their transfers and descriptions of land. While I was doing so, they proposed that I take an interest with them, and we agreed that I should take one-third of their third under the article with Hargrove and Carter, and pay one-third of the money. This let me into the purchases which they had previously made and I was in like manner and to the same extent to be interested in subsequent acquisitions. I was also to take a partnership with them in their store. And for my services then performed and afterwards in relation to the land was to be paid and afterwards was paid $600. 

"From the time I became connected with them, I kept the accounts of this land, running through the purchases of occupation, entries of land, and rendering account to distant partners. I risk nothing in saying that I understood G&S Williams' interest in these lands and what they were composed better than they did themselves. Before George Williams died, a settlement took place in connection with this land with Carter and with Hargrove."

There came a point a few years later when the land venture appeared to have been a failure.

Family friend Jeremiah Fryar of Lookout Valley said, "Land values were down in 1844 due to doubts about the railroad being completed or at least stopped."

Col. Whiteside said, "These lands were taken in 1838 and 1839 and, by the time it became necessary to close the partnership business of G&S Williams, from a suspension of the work on the Rail Road and a distrust of it ever being renewed and also by the dreadful sickness which had scourged the country where these lands lay, the price of them became so depressed that considering their scattered and complicated condition, they (I mean G&S Williams') interest would scarcely have sold for anything.

"I went myself to the South and appealed to the partners of Williams to purchase the interest, but they refused to do so at any price. And in being asked said they would not give 50 cents on the original cost. Under a hope that this investment would still turn out well, Samuel Williams desired to hold on to it and to save to his brother's children their part if possible. It might turn out a fortune. The original investment had yielded no funds - the proceeds of a first sale having been reinvested."

He recalled that Samuel Williams "was a resident of Ross's Landing at the setting up of the Ocoee District. All that I remember that they held out of the partnership was a lot bought of Rhea and Ross and one half of my own lot at Chattanooga. At a land sale, we bought it. If Samuel Williams had not bought it I do not believe it would have brought one-fourth of its original cost." 

Col. Whiteside lamented, "I do not believe these lands whether in small undivided interests or in whole tracts as surveyed or surveyed into quarter sections and fractions would have sold for half the amount of the cost. I frequently endeavored to sound the market and indeed could find none. I did so on the occasion of the Williams sale, endeavoring to induce the Southern Partners to purchase the Williams interest, but could not get them to do so. They had no interest to buy at any price. They seemed to look on their investments in these lands as almost a total loss and would not purchase any more. Recently, since an improvement in the health of the county which is taking place and since the resumption of work on the Rail Road, these lands and lots have greatly appreciated in value and I would say are now worth more than the original cost of preferences and entry money and interest on it."

The Father Of Samuel Williams Spied Out One Of The Most Beautiful Vistas In The South

It was the father of Samuel Williams who spied out one of the most beautiful vistas in the South on the Tennessee River near the future Chattanooga.

As spelled out in the old Williams lawsuit that was found last March, George Washington Williams had come first to Hamilton County from the pleasant narrow valley at Paint Rock, Ala. He had left some of his grown children, including Samuel, behind. Paint Rock is near Scottsboro in Jackson County. 

Temperance "Tempie" Kyle Williams, who was the wife of G.W. and the mother of Samuel, had died in 1824.

G.W. Williams was born in North Carolina on Feb. 1, 1787. He was the son of another Samuel, who lived from 1738 to 1788 and served in the Revolution. His wife was Hannah Isbell. That Samuel was the son of George, who lived from 1710 to 1758, and Priscilla Thomas. He was the son of Samuel, who lived from 1680 to 1748, and was the son of Roger Williams, who was born in 1619 in England, and married Mary of Surry County, Va.

George W. Williams had moved to Bedford County, Tn., and met and married Tempie there. Most of the children were born at Paint Rock. Hannah was born in 1805, Samuel in 1807, G.W. Jr. in 1809, and Polly in 1813. The youngest sons were Silas and Jesse. Since most of his family was still in Paint Rock, G.W. Williams Sr. was back and forth between there and his new home. It was a trip of around 85 miles by horseback. 

It was said that George W. Williams Sr. "was nearly illiterate, not even knowing his English alphabet." But he had an excellent eye for good land. In Hamilton County, he was able to acquire a site where the Tennessee River takes one of its many turns - this one going into the then-fearsome Grand Canyon of the Tennessee River. 

It overlooked what was then called Brown's Island for John Brown, a storied character who had occupied his substantial two-story log cabin in Lookout Valley since 1803 and who operated a ferry across the river just downstream from his island. Lookout Mountain was straight ahead also, and there were other mountains all around. His home, the log Brown's Tavern, still stands in Lookout Valley, but it has an uncertain future after the property was sold to a developer. 

This property, that grew to include 531 and 3/4 acres, was always referred to as the home place. G.W. Williams built a two-story frame home there that faced the island and Lookout Mountain.

It was just a few miles from Ross's Landing, but that was still Indian territory.

The home place was acquired from the family of Richard Waterhouse, an early speculator who had floated down the river from Knoxville when he heard of the impending land opportunities. His acquisitions included a grant along the river that was one acre wide and 220 acres long.The price was $2.20 or a penny an acre.

The Williams papers include the original grant that went to Richard G. Waterhouse and his heirs in 1823. William Carroll, governor of the state of Tennessee, had his seal affixed at Murfreesborough. March 12, 1823. Daniel Graham was secretary. It was recorded in the register's office of West Tennessee. April 4, 1823. Brice F. Martin deputy register. It was recorded in the Hamilton County. Register's Office on May 13, 1825.   

The papers include the July 30, 1830, deed from Richard Waterhouse, Blackston Waterhouse was the executor of R.G. Waterhouse dec. Witnesses were James Smith and William Stringer. Asahel Rawlings was the clerk.

A document said George W. Williams "has title to the within tract of land. William Carroll governor. Sam A. Smith secretary, D.P. Armstrong register of E.L. Nov. 9, 1832. This was the grant recorded in my office. The Grant. State of Tennessee No. 17.518. In consideration of an entry made in the Entry Takers Office of Hamilton County of No.40. Dated the 24th day of January 1831 by George W. Williams."

There was also Grant 17.520. Entry made at the Entry Takers Office of Hamilton County of No. 35. Dated the 30th day of -- 1831. 250 acres on the banks of the Tennessee beginning on a sycamore tree at or near the Tumbling Shoals, then up the Tennessee River as meandered south. . . to two walnuts. Kelly's Turnpike Road and cross to Richard G. Waterhouse Tumbling Shoals tract (now belonging to George W. Williams), crossing the road to a white oak on the Waterhouse line, to a white oak to a black oak crossing the road. Containing 50 acres more or less, which tract was entered in the entry taker's office in Hamilton County under the names of William H. Stringer and Joshua Johnson Jan. 4, 1825. Conveyed by deed from Stringer to James Cunningham Sept. 8, 1829, and by Cunningham to Josiah Lusk Jan. 7, 1833. Sold to George W. Williams March 5, 1834. Witnesses Daniel Sivley and Cornelius Milliken. 

The Williams papers also include a deed from Sept. 16, 1831, detailing a sale to George W. Williams of 63 acres "on the side of Wallens Ridge." It was at "the corner of land that George W. Williams purchased of R.J. Waterhouse. To a 50-acre entry made by Stringer and Johnson. To an entry made by James Cunningham. To a bluff."  William Carroll was governor of the state of Tennessee at the time. Affixed to the deed was the great seal of the state. This was "on the 20th of August in the Year of Our Lord One Thousand Eight Hundred And Thirty Two - and of American Independence the fifty seventh."

Another deed that is included in the papers told of property "lying in the Third District of Hamilton County. On the north side of the Tennessee River adjoining David Fields' reservation. Beginning at a white oak, to a box elder on the river bank, thence down the river. To a stake on the river, to two black walnuts on the riverbank, to Joseph Keeny's, to a large Spanish oak marked B at the foot of the mountain. To a black oak, to a post oak, to a stake at Fields' reservation."  

In a time when surveying was not so precise, another deed of the time referred to the place "where Hugh Cunningham drowned in the river."

The deeds also outline who were some of the Williams neighbors at this early date. In the papers is a "list of district returned by Cornelius Milliken Esq. for 1834." This would make it one of the earliest county tax lists yet found. Alas, it was one of the papers that wound up in the dumpster and a number of the names cannot be read.

Those that can be made out are David Bunch, Thomas Canning, John Fryar, John Ford, William Ford, Joseph Ford, Jeremiah Fryar, Robert Freeman, John Howith, William Holman, Jesse Hartman, Dickison Jennings, John B. Inlow, James Keeny, William H. Lusk, Josiah Lusk, Ivy Lawson, Lewis Montgomery, James Moss, William Perrell, Elisha Rogers, Alfred M. Rogers, John Rogers, James Rogers, Henry Rogers, Daniel Sivley, Absalom Sivley, John Starling..... George Williams, Samuel Williams, David Walling. 

Meanwhile, Samuel Williams had married and he began having children at Paint Rock. His wife was Rebecca Davis, daughter of William and Tiny Berry Davis of Paint Rock.

However, his brother, George W. Jr., moved up to live with his father across the line in Tennessee. It was said, "The father was very infirm in health. He had no slaves and little personal property. He had two older children and two younger sons and a married daughter. George W. Jr. had been taught to write and instructed a little in the elementary branch of learning. He manifested some capacity to trading to advantage. Having confidence in the fidelity of his son George W. and in his business capacity, after paying for the lands he had the title to the Waterhouse property made out to George W. on July 30, 1830 - although he had never paid one cent for it."

Peter Sivley, an early settler, said, "I was acquainted with the Old Man. I heard him say that the home place was G.W.'s. That he had bought a place in Alabama and given it to Samuel. And he bought another place on the Tennessee River for Silas. It was bought from John Gwinn. Another place was to be bought for Jesse."

Alfred M. Rogers recalled, "Part of the children lived in Alabama, part here. The Old Man had some hogs, a horse or horses, and some farming utensils."

John Baker, son-in-law of George W. Williams Sr. related, "I lived 12 miles from George Sr. in Alabama. The boys was all left there together and my wife also. Samuel Williams lived with his mother in Alabama and was raised, I suppose, by the assistance of the property left in Alabama. After Samuel Williams married, he never got any benefit of the land that his father had in Alabama."

Baker also said, "George W. Williams the ancestor bought the home place from Waterhouse and paid for it. When he became in bad health, he told his son to go see Waterhouse and get the deed to the land he had purchased made to him (George Jr.), which was done. He instructed George to convey to his brothers and sisters equal portions of the land.

"George Williams paid me $150 in 1832, I think in May. It was for my wife's interest in the home place. George paid me $140 in 1832 and Samuel paid me $10 more after they went into partnership. He borrowed it from a man named Lusk. I gave George a receipt and both me and my wife, Polly, subscribed to it."

George D. Foster, who was a protege of Col. Whiteside and later lived at the top of his Whiteside Turnpike on Lookout Mountain, said of the land around the Williams home, "Of the 50-acre tract, I reckon about 30 acres is bottom and about 20 acres is upland. It is common bottom and common upland. George W. came from Alabama to live with his father.

"George W. Sr. was living there when I came to the country. George W. Jr. may have been there then. He farmed there with the old man until a year or two before the old man died. George Sr. had an old Negro woman and two small boys that he let Richard Waterhouse have after the death of Richard G. Waterhouse. It was an over payment that was to go to Waterhouse to go toward paying for the land that Bud Taylor or some other of the connection had bought from Waterhouse.

"The Old Man built the house. The labor that was done there seemed to be under his direction. There has been some land cleared and some stables built since the Old Man died. I don't think the house and yard and well are in as good a repair as when the Old Man was living. The stables are such as common country farmers have to keep their horses in. The first time I ever saw George W. he was living in Alabama and had come up to see his father. The next acquaintance I had with him he had come up and was living with his father on the farm. I think farming was his chief occupation."

John Starling reminisced, "I think it has been about 21 years last winter since I first became acquainted with George W. Williams. I worked at the home place. I thought it belonged to the Old Man and George Williams. I don't know of any buildings being done after I went there. There was some land cleared after I went there which the old man paid for. There was a house weatherboarded after I went there, which was also paid for by the Old Man. George and the Old Man lived together about three years after I went to it and before the Old Man died.

"The first year I went there young George and I worked together in the crops. I then went off and, while I was gone, there was goods bought and George traded in them and continued trading in them until the Old Man died and, after his death. I came back a while before Christmas and the Old Man's death.

"George Sr. did not have a great deal of property beside the home place. He had some cattle and hogs, and young George carried off one small drove of hogs for the Old Man before he died. The Old Man showed me a parcel of silver, for how much I don't know, which he said George had brought back for the hogs. The merchandise goods were bought after George took the hogs off. George bought his goods in the fall and winter and the Old Man died the following February. He worked on the farm until he got the goods and then he attended to them. Silas lived with the Old Man part of the time.

"They bought a tract from Lusk that was known as the Freeman place. One tract the Old Man bought I heard say that he bought it for his son, Silas Williams." 

Archibald Brown said he became acquainted with George Sr. in the spring of 1830. "I worked a good deal on the farm, minding stock."

If his birth day of 1787 is correct, George Sr., who was often referred to as "the Old Man," was not yet 42 when he died at the home place by the Tennessee River on Feb. 18, 1832. He was buried at the property. 

How His Brother's Failed Store Led Samuel Williams From Paint Rock To Ross's Landing 

The story is told in the remarkable Williams legal papers that were unearthed last March of how Samuel Williams was induced by his brother to leave Alabama and come to little Ross's Landing.

Samuel Williams, later known as "the Father of Chattanooga," at the time was ensconced in Paint Rock, Ala., where he had grown up. He and his wife, Rebecca, had a little daughter, Elizabeth.

Brother George Williams had gone up to Hamilton County and moved in with his ailing father, G.W. Sr. George Jr. then went to store keeping at the Williams home place near Mountain Creek. At one time he and his brother Silas kept a store in Lookout Valley. But George Jr. was not so well versed in business. And he had shrewd competitors like the Rawlings.

Col. James A. Whiteside tells the story best, "George W Williams very often gave me a history of his early life and commencement in business and of the motives for and manner of joining Samuel Williams in business. He has very often told me of his embarrassment in a small mercantile business which he was doing before the partnership, of the efforts of other merchants to break him down (particularly the Rawlings), and of his going to Alabama where Samuel resided and inducing him to sell his land for money, drive up his stock and join him in business at Ross's Landing - a new trading place just opening to importance on the borders of the Cherokee Nation and near the portion which was being rapidly settled by Georgians from the lower country."

John Baker, who married the older sister of Samuel Williams, notes, "George Williams had been merchandising prior to 1833. Samuel Williams was living in Jackson County, Ala., where he had a small farm. George W. had become much embarrassed in his pecuniary affairs. He went down in 1833 to Jackson County and proposed a partnership to me and Samuel Williams in business generally such as hogs, cattle, farming and merchandising.

"I declined to go into business with him, but Samuel agreed to do so. They were in partnership generally in everything, and neither one of them was to hold any property, either real or personal, separate, but everything was to be in partnership. Samuel Williams sold his farm in Alabama for $1,100, and that was used for the payment of George's individual liabilities in Tennessee. George told me he owed between $900 and $1,000 that he could not pay without help. They both told me that the debts of George had to be paid before they could go into business."

Col. Whiteside continues, "As well as I recollect the amount contributed by Samuel was stated by George to be a little over $1,000 - proceeds of his land sale, stock mostly investable for market worth some five or six hundred dollars and his household effects, for George often said to me that one of them did not own a spoon."

Samuel Williams took up residence sometimes at the home place as well as in a house on Market Street. This was near their G&S Williams store.

Col. Whiteside, who afterward became a partner in the Williams mercantile business as well as their land holdings, remembered, "George declared to me the home place to be joint property belonging to him and Samuel, that it was cultivated and managed on their joint account with their joint forces, and that one had as much control of the place as the other, and that all its proceeds were treated and used as joint property.

"George said he had commenced on nothing, got his goods on a credit and got them scattered out in the country on credit so that he could get little for them and that Sam's money saved him. He had not been doing business at Ross's Landing but on the north side of the river near the mountain. But when Samuel came they started a small trading establishment at Ross's Landing.

"Brothers of George W. informed him that sometime before he had gone to Nashville to procure some goods. He had gotten the small stock of goods on credit as recommended by David Rankin. He had not been able to pay for them and he was expecting to be sued. He was advised that living as he did on the border of the Cherokee Nation, if he had any capital he could do a profitable business trading with the Cherokees. He spoke despondingly of the efforts of other merchants, particularly, the Rawlings. Appealed to Samuel to convert all his lands into cash and move to Tennessee as a partner. George W. Sr. left personal debts of several hundred dollars not covered. Samuel sold his land and they became equal partners.

"They had all confidence in each other in their business transactions. There was no distrust of each other and no occasion for it because one could not defraud the other, everything being in common between them as regarded property, money or anything of value. And beside they were as intimate and confiding as I ever knew two brothers and I am certain each would have trusted the other for everything under all circumstances."

Jesse G. Blackwell, who also clerked for G&S Williams, said, "George remarked to me that it was distinctly true, and known to the World, that he nor Samuel had any individual property, but that everything they had, from a clod of Earth up to the spoons upon their shelves, were partnership property. And in the conversation George said that Samuel owned one-half of everything used by his family and he owned one-half of everything used by Samuel's family for six years before that time, and that he had the same interests in everything used by Samuel's family - although there was no instrument of writing between them." 

Capt. John P. Long said, "My first visit to Ross's Landing was about August 1835. The Williams had goods there in partnership. They continued in partnership in goods until the summer of 1841. A portion of the time they had other partners in the concern. They sold out to me in 1841.The stock of goods amounted to $4,700. I paid about $1,000 down. I made a note to James A. Whiteside for $2,400 or $2,500."

Alexander Kelly, whose family operated Kelly's Ferry in Marion County, said, "I was acquainted with George W. Williams and George the father. G.W. lived with his father. They lived in Jackson County, Ala., until about or after the death of the Old Man. By they I mean the balance of George W. Williams' children. G.W. was merchandizing and doing tolerably well at the time of his father's death. When Samuel Williams moved here, the property included hogs, cattle, dry goods. I lived about 12 miles from him. Him and me was very intimately acquainted. The trade from the lower end of the county was mainly done with Col. Oats and me, and when G.W. Williams first went to lay in goods he came and stayed all night and told us his business and he was cautioned about merchandizing. He told us his circumstances and how he had to make the payment. If I remember right, Col. Oats or me, or perhaps both, loaned him some money, which we did do a few times. I think we gave him a few lines to Nashville. G.W. Williams bought his first goods on credit, but I suppose he was able to pay when due."

James S. Edwards, who worked as a Williams clerk and then had his own store, said, "James A. Whiteside told me he had sold out his interest to George and Samuel Williams for $500, that he had concluded to do so rather than be bothered, that it would be a very troublesome business to settle up. George Williams told me he had bought out Whiteside and gave him $600 for his interest. He said he and Samuel were to pay the debts of the firm. I also agreed and took the same amount. There was a good deal owing, but what amount I am not able to state. There were books left that showed the amount of accounts owed the firm and went into the hands of George and Samuel Williams." 

William H. Stringer, who had property on Stringer's Ridge, said, "I was tax collector for Hamilton County in 1834. G.W. had 120 acres of common land and 668 acres of school land. None listed for Samuel Williams. G.W. and Samuel commenced business together in 1832 or 1833. I settled an account with G&S Williams for dealings in the store at Chattanooga. Afterward, G.W. Williams presented an individual account due to him for articles I had got for Old Man Smith down at the home place, which account I paid. It was for salt, sugar and some small fancy articles. It was around November 1837." 

Elijah Thurman said he became acquainted with George W. Williams in 1831 and with Samuel Williams in 1833. "I lived about three miles from them. I have heard them both talking divers places and divers times, and both said that everything they had in the world was partnership property, and they both said they lived out of a common stock and no accounts were kept between them. That if ever they did dissolve partnership, everything was to be divided equally without any reservation to one more than the other. I have probably every year heard them speak of their partnership until George died. The last time I heard George speak of it was when he was gathering their last drove of cattle. I rode some distance with him. I heard George speak of the partnership between them oftener than I ever did Samuel. George told me he had known men who kept no accounts, who had succeeded better than any he ever knew. And that was the reason he done business in that way. "  

George Williams Jr. became very ill a short time after he and Elijah Thurman started out on the cattle drive. He returned to the Williams home place, where he died Aug. 9, 1842. He was 33. One notation states: Aug. 9, 1842. One fine lined and trimmed coffin $25."

Col. Whiteside remembered, "Within a few days on the cattle drive George took sick and died. I was going to start to the north soon and Samuel implored me to fall in with Silas in Virginia, furnish him expense money, inform him of George's death, aid in selling the cattle and go to Baltimore and pay over the proceeds of the sale on the debts.
"George Williams had no money when he died and Samuel had none to furnish me when I started about the 15th of August. I went on through Washington City, passed over to Winchester in the Valley of Virginia and returned about 100 miles where I met Silas in the neighborhood of Staunton. I furnished some expense money of my own and was reimbursed out of the sale of the cattle so I consider I may safely say G&S Williams had no money at the time of George's death. A good many of the cattle which they drove were bought on credit and afterwards paid for by Samuel. I wrote up the settlement between Samuel and Silas regarding the cattle on Sept. 19, 1842."
The unexpected turn of events left Samuel Williams alone in the mercantile business with a pile of debts. Samuel Williams overnight had lost not only his business partner, but his best friend.
 
Messy Divorce Landed Samuel Williams In Long-Running Lawsuit
 
A messy divorce landed Chattanooga pioneer Samuel Williams in a long-running lawsuit. It was unlucky for him, but lucky for Chattanooga history after some 800 pages relating to the hotly-contested dispute were found behind the walls of an old downtown building.

Samuel Williams and his brother, George, married sisters they had known since childhood at Paint Rock, Ala., in Jackson County. Samuel married Rebecca Davis before he ever came to live at Ross's Landing in 1833. George married Elizabeth Davis about a year after he came to live with his father, George Sr., at the home place near Mountain Creek.

After having children Elizabeth, Mary, Madison "Matt" and James with Rebecca, Samuel divorced her - a rarity in those days. He then married Keturah Taylor, who was young enough to be his daughter. Samuel was born in 1807 and Keturah not until 1825. He and Keturah eventually had a houseful of children, including Alonzo, Quali Alabama "Allie", Skelton, Anne, Samuel, Josephine, William S. and George Forrest.

It still might not have been a problem, but, after brother George Jr. suddenly died on Aug. 9, 1842, Samuel took his young wife and four children and moved into the home place with Elizabeth and her two sons, Calvin and Pleasant. He also brought the young wife.

To make things even more crowded, John L. Divine moved in too. He married the eldest daughter of Samuel Williams, Elizabeth. Divine had landed at Ross's Landing in January 1838 before the name change to Chattanooga. Only 15 at the time, he was traveling on horseback on his way to Mississippi. He stayed the night at the inn of the widow Henderson and found the next morning that his wallet and fortune of $16.85 were missing. Divine had to sell his horse to pay for his lodging. With no horse to continue on his sojourn, a few days later he accepted a job as a clerk for G&S Williams. He worked at the rival Rawlings store as well at one time. 

A pleading in the case says Samuel Williams was "supporting the two families and the slaves and the livestock in the G&S Partnership. He was in possession of the home tract of land at the time of his brother's death. Afterward, he took a second wife and took her to his home, having divorced his first wife, a sister of complainant Elizabeth under circumstances which probably dissatisfied her.

"But he never mistreated her in any way or denied her any right she was entitled to. She was aware that the property was partnership property. After the death of George W. Williams, Samuel Williams did not appropriate the slaves for his own use, but for the support of both families."

A lawyer for the other side said, "Elizabeth was put off with the Negro woman Jinny and boy Albert and some three or four cows. The cows died except for one. At the sale she purchased some corn and bacon, which was soon exhausted. She was turned out of her home and out of doors and to penury with her two infant children by the fraudulent acts and doings of Samuel Williams."

The widow Williams finally moved out of the crowded manor house at the Williams home place. The dissatisfied widow filed suit against Samuel Williams in Chancery Court at Cleveland, Tn., on Aug. 3, 1843. On Sept. 8, Elizabeth Williams appeared before Justice of the Peace Samuel Hamill. Her statement was "Samuel Williams came into the house with his second wife as well as John L. Divine, who had married his daughter, and imposed upon me and caused an unpleasant state of affairs. He caused me to leave the house and home. He also appropriated the cabin of the Negroes and the use of the Negroes."

Samuel Williams "denied he caused Elizabeth to leave her house and home, but endeavored to make her comfortable in it. She chose to change her residence."

The case was later transferred to the court at Harrison in Hamilton County. It was disclosed to the court in the September term 1846 that the widow had married Claiborn Gott. Gott was appointed guardian of Pleasant and Calvin Williams. Claiborn Gott, who was from Marion County, had previously married another Elizabeth. Elizabeth Prigmore Gott had died in 1841 at the age of 24.

Jeremiah Fryar said, "I lived about a mile from the Williams home place. I never heard any complaints from her or others after she left the home place. There were some small buildings a short distance from the new cabins, but I do not know if she ever lived in them. The buildings were not of much value. About 15 acres were cleared. I am personally friendly to the Williams the whole time and understand their business pretty well, having dealt with them a good deal."

George D. Foster recalled, "Samuel Williams lives there (the home place) now. I have visited him there and heard him call it his place. I think I saw the widow of George W. Williams and her family at the house a year after his death. Afterward, they lived in a house nearly west of Chattanooga."

John L. Divine stated, "Elizabeth Gott moved to a farm near Chattanooga called the 104-acre fraction. She moved the old log cabins. One was moved a small distance, the other about a mile. I had the houses put up myself and hired the most of the hands to get out boards, etc. She had about $30 in improvements."

Major John Cowart, who lived directly across the river from Chattanooga and operated a ferry, was a confidante of Elizabeth Williams, the widow. He said, "I have been acquainted with Samuel and George Williams 12 or 15 years, with Mrs. Williams 10 or 11 years. Mrs. Williams was frequently at my house and requested me to act for her children, which I refused to do, thinking I might move from the country. I never moved to Chattanooga, though I live on the north side of the Tennessee River and about four miles from the Williams.

"Samuel Williams lived part of the time at Chattanooga. I have been frequently in their store at Chattanooga, though I was not very well acquainted with their business. In the latter part of 1837 and the year 1838, I did see them most every day as they crossed at my ferry by the year, and I came to Chattanooga about three times nearly every day.

"My understanding has always been that the Negroes, stock and hogs and the home place were partnership property, though I do not recollect whether Samuel was living at the home place at the time George Williams died. When either George or Samuel mentioned the stock or other property on the farm, or at the store they always spoke of it as partnership property. I know they both with their families lived in the same house together. There was but one house on the property, though there were some small cabins that were used as Negro houses. Mrs. Williams did seem to have the fullest confidence that Samuel Williams would do her and her children justice."

As a part of the lawsuit, it was ordered that the beloved home place and all its accouterments, down to the knives and forks, be sold. The Williams land also went on the auction block. The home place sale was set to be held on site. Samuel Williams, at the last moment, was able to persuade James Berry, the clerk and master at Cleveland, to put off the first sale on the contention that values had sunk so low that it would bring only a fraction of its worth. However, a second sale was arranged. Samuel Williams had to buy back his own home place along with many of his possessions. Capt. John P. Long was a representative for the widow, purchasing many items of her choosing.

Items at the sale of the Williams estate in February 1845 included feather beds, bedsteads and furniture, a china press, cupboard, two bureaus, two fall leaf tables, sideboard, sofa, candle stand, set of knives and forks, 387 pounds of castings, five cribs of corn, four stacks of fodder, two plows, three sets of gears, three files, a drawing knife, two augurs, a set of blacksmith tools, a wagon, four head of horses, 14 bee hives, 185 head of cattle, 80 head of hogs, four pair of fire irons, a lot of bacon, a rifle gun, a silver watch, a grind stone and a rifle gun barrel. These items were sold "pursuant to the court at Cleveland at its March term 1844 in the case of Samuel Williams vs. Elizabeth Williams, the widow of George Williams." All the property was conveyed "except the Negro woman Ginny, Negro boy Albert, three feather beds, bedsteads and furniture, bureau, table, set of knives and forks, colt, four cows, lot of bacon, 129 pounds of castings, 100 bushels of corn, three bee hives, which the widow retains with the price bid for it at the sale of $890.58. Making the amount transferred to her $4,565.76. Signed Samuel Williams Feb. 1845."

Ignatius Hall remembered, "At the sale, John P. Long was the principle bidder and bought the principle part of the property. My understanding was that he was bidding for the widow."   

Clerk and Master Berry said, "At the first sale, attorney Whiteside advised Samuel Williams not to do it. There were some moneyed people there who wanted the sale to go forward. At the second sale date, John P. Long made the only bid for the widow. No one else bid on any of the property except perhaps for some small articles. I thought the property was bid off at a very fair price. Samuel Williams told me he wanted the property sold as soon after the court made the order of sale as I could."

William Biggs noted, "I went to the sale. When the sale started it was talked of in the crowd that some individual was going to bid on all the property for the widow. I was told the property was to be sold on a credit and that is why I did not bid. I saw no valuable property sold but what was understood to be for the widow and the crowd seemed to understand it in the same way. There was some property we did not wish to purchase, and the crowd seemed to take no interest in the sale."

The land sale was held at the Post Office on Market Street in Chattanooga. Again, Samuel Williams was able to retrieve many of his holdings.

Many of the leading citizens from the early days of Chattanooga gave depositions in the lawsuit. Each rode horseback to the then county seat of Harrison. Ross's Landing merchant John P. Long said he traveled 26 miles. Jesse G. Blackwell, clerk for the Williams brothers, turned in 70 miles for two days of testimony. Alexander Kelly said his trip was 48 miles to and from Kelly's Ferry. David McNabb, who lived across the river from Kelly's Ferry, asked for $20 payment. He said he traveled 40 miles and had to use four ferries along the way.

Samuel Williams and his lawyer and business partner James A. Whiteside frequently took the old road to Harrison for court. Col. Whiteside was considered such a great man in the community that William L. Shoemaker, who lived near the Chickamauga Creek bridge, would wait for him each day and then accompany him on to the county seat. It was said that "Old Man Shoemaker considered it a great honor and never missed it." Williams was embroiled in a number of other lawsuits as well. He had a number of dealings with the top lawyers of the day, including Reese Brabson, Benjamin Rush Montgomery, T. Nixon Van Dyke, Richard Henderson and John A. Minnis.

One of the pleadings in the Williams case says, "George W. Williams was constituted a commissioner or trustee by the proprietors of the quarter section of land upon which a part of the town of Chattanooga was situated, to lay off said quarter into lots and sell them. He acted as commissioner with John P. Long and Aaron M. Rawlings, who were also commissioners or trustees. Since the death of G.W. Williams, R.H. Peyton filed suit in Chancery Court at Harrison against John P. Long and against Samuel Williams as administrator of the estate of G.W. Williams. The suit is still pending. The amount claimed is large.

Col. Whiteside said, "Samuel Williams has been involved in several harassing lawsuits from 1839-1850. One long and expensive suit was over the 14-acre fraction at Chattanooga involving the Carter, Boyce and Hines lands. It was settled in 1848 by dividing the 14 acres."

He also said in a deposition in March 1844, "The claims of two and a half occupant interests in one of the 80-acre fractions in Chattanooga in which the Williams had an interest of two ninths was disputed by adverse claimants in part and others called into question the validity of some of the claims. There were about 20 original occupants (I cannot undertake to name them) who still held their equitable claims or had assigned them to others. A majority of the occupants or their assignees had transferred their claims to R.A. Ramsey, A.S. Lenoir and A. Kennedy to be held in trust for them to lay off in town lots, sell and account for the proceeds. The Williams claims had been so transferred. Other occupants did not transfer and were litigating with Kennedy and his associates and the other occupants. Other embarrassment existed as to this tract of land and I could not well see how it could be brought to sale under a decree so as to get out G&S Williams' interest. Nor can I see any better way than to operate on the Williams claims as it stands in setting up their partnership business. This claim might turn out to be worth nothing or it might become valuable." 

One legal paper reads:  Pleas in the Court House of the Town of Harrison, County of Hamilton, and the State aforesaid, on the fourth Monday, being the 27th day of March, 1843, and in the 67th year of the Independence of the United States. Judge Charles F. Keith of the Circuit Court. Joseph G. Smith, James S. Edwards and William A. Caldwell are firmly bound to Samuel Williams in the sum of $200, and they are commencing a legal action against him. Sheriff is to summon Samuel Williams to court the fourth Monday of March to answer Joseph G. Smith and James S. Edwards trading as Smith Edwards & Company on a plea of trespass on their damage of $1,000. Clerk B.B. Cannon. 

Summons Joseph G. Smith, James S. Edwards and Samuel Williams. L. Guthrie, deputy sheriff. Williams was indebted to them for $450.05 for divers goods, wares and merchandise. Whiteside & Brabson, attorneys for Williams.

 

1848. The Honorable E. Alexander, Circuit Court Judge. Order to take the deposition of Alpheous L. Edwards. The Honorable Charles E. Keith, Circuit Court Judge. 1849. The Honorable Seth Lucky, Circuit Court Judge. Jury - Lewis Patterson, John Brown Jr., William Evitt, George Irwin, Hiram Cornwall, Absalom Selcer, Washington Gann, Henry Penick, George L. Rains, James G. Tenor, R.G. Chitwood and John Chestnut. All good and lawful men of Hamilton County who being elected, tried and sworn to well and truly try the issues joined. A.G.W. Puckett clerk. 1850. Jury - George W. Gardenhire, Gibson Witt, Jesse Walker, R. Hamill, Samuel Hunter, B. Lusk, John Julian, Samuel T. Igou, Bird Irwin, George Waller, James R. Johnson and Samuel Julian.

December 1850. John A. Hooke, justice of the peace. Judge Charles Keith. Ruling that Samuel Williams, John A. Minnis and James Clift are bound unto Joseph G. Smith, James S. Edwards and John S. Edwards, late merchants and partners, trading under the name of Smith, Edwards & Co. in the amount of $881.36. Samuel Williams to take an appeal to the Appeals Court in Knoxville. Andrew G.W. Puckett clerk. Sheriff John Johnson. Deputy Sheriff Thomas D. Conner. Deputy Sheriff Jesse G. Blackwell. Witnesses G.W. Dearing, G.D. Foster, West Shelley, T.M. Capps, John Norman, Obediah Patty, John A. Hooke, Larkin Hair, John A. Godsey, Samuel Cross and Brittain Riddle.

$11 due Supreme Court at Knoxville in case of Henry Tymannus vs. Samuel Williams. Judgment was against Williams and James A. Whiteside. James C. Francis, sheriff of Hamilton County, 1847. Judgment in the estate of James W. Smith recovered against John K. Farmer and Samuel Williams. Nov. 25, 1842. Judgement John Sappington recovered against G&S Williams for $22. Nov. 5, 1846. Suit against Gross Scruggs. Lewis Tyner claims $16.02 for attendance at court. Sept. 20, 1845. Note of G.W. Williams and Allen White to Wesley Davis. Now the property of James Kelly. July 30, 1844. R. Henderson attorney for Kelly. Samuel Williams, executor of the estate of G.W. Williams. William Jefferson Rogers clerk. Nov. 3,1845. 

April 11, 1840. S. Williams & Brothers to Archable Brown, Jesse Smith, Neal Lang. Note on Blackburn Higgins. Jesse Walker vs. Samuel Williams & partners. Stayed by John L. Divine. Judgment to Chandler & Rogers. Pay to Missouri Clack August 1843. Pay Russell Peck. Allen White. Due Benjamin Ford March 4, 1839. 

Spencer Jarnagin received $60 fee from Samuel Williams in the cases of George Rice vs. Samuel Williams and Rogers & Stringer against Dowell & Godsey at Circuit Court in Bradley County. Aug. 2, 1842. Darby D. McClure received $30.45 of G&S Williams by hands of Williams & Divine. James McSpaden due $9.50 Oct. 9, 1841. Promise to pay John and Willis Sanders $91.30 in good current bank notes or dry goods Aug. 13, 1838. Silas Williams. Jan. 18, 1841. Witness Thomas Oxley. Witnesses J.G. Blackwell, J.A. Minnis.

Due Mr. Vail $1. May 14, 1841. Pr. James S. Edwards. James A. Whiteside received $42.15 for 30 grants issued in the name of George W. Williams, Samuel Williams and James A. Whiteside. F.W. Lea. May 7, 1850. Rawlings & Divine due $60 in Georgia state script. June 17, 1842. $20 due George W. Evans Jan. 18, 1843. $100 in Georgia state script due Rawlings & Divine. Account with R.M. Rawlings. Pay Samuel Hamill $47 April 15, 1842. Reese B. Brabson received of Samuel Williams $53.35 as the full amount of a judgment and costs for J&S. Martin May 8, 1843. $500 judgment against G&S Williams for Green H. Pryor in Hamilton County Circuit Court June 6, 1844. James A. Whiteside attorney for Pryor. John Godsey received $100 judgment. 

July 21, 1844, I rec. your letter stated you send by mr. Godsey $150 but there was not that amount I received $140.30 which will be credited he will tell you all about it Colonel Whiteside will explain to you about the judgment and execution and I will see you when you come over to see the cattle as you wrote you would come the cattle will be up about the 10th of August and I wish to sell, yours G.H. Pryor

Promise to pay Joseph Lovelady March 1842. Received of Samuel Williams the full amount of a judgment which James R. Peck recovered against W.G. Sparks, Samuel Williams and Richard Henderson at the Supreme Court at Knoxville September 1844. James F. Bradford attorney for plaintiff by his agent Reese B. Brabson. Judgment for Caleb E. Pleasant & Company against Samuel Williams before John A. Hooke, Esq. May 1843.

Received of Samuel Williams $2,692 as judgment in Hamilton County Circuit Court. Jesse Williams by his agent Jesse G. Blackwell July 25, 1850. A.G.W. Puckett clerk.

James King for the use of G&S Williams vs. Gross Scruggs. Circuit Court March 1845.Judgment rendered against Samuel Williams. Lewis Tyner paid $22 as witness.

Suit against A.L. Edwards, John S. Edwards, James S. Edwards on a note executed by them April 1843. Payable to George Stephen. Eight cases of execution now in the hands of John Mitchell, a const. of Lookout Valley. Suit Samuel Williams vs. M.P. Light. A.B. Beason.

Attorney Richard Henderson paid for his service in the Chancery Court at Pikeville, Tennessee. William Gardenhire and others were the plaintiffs against Samuel Williams. Oct. 29, 1843. Jesse Williams vs. Samuel Williams. 

Jesse G. Blackwell "I was familiar with George and Samuel Williams from the summer of 1835 up to the death of George Williams. And I think I was as well acquainted with their partnership transactions during that time as any person not particularly connected with them in business. And I also think I have the right of knowing much of their business soon after the death of George. 

"A short time after the death of George Williams I made a schedule of the personal partnership effects of G&S Williams, and think I found in notes and accounts to the amount of about $9,000 (owing to the firm). Nine or 10 Negroes, eight head of horses, and much other miscellaneous property such as hogs, cattle and farming tools. I think about $7,000 or $8,000 might have been considered good, and the balance was insolvent persons. 

"Samuel Williams has paid many of the debts of G&S Williams since the death of George. The amount paid by Samuel is near $15,000. Including cost and other necessary expenses, I think the amount is near $16,000. The most of his time has been employed in settling the business of G&S Williams since the death of George. He has suffered many privations and undergone much labor for the benefit of that concern."

It was not until 1850 when a judge rendered a resounding verdict in favor of Samuel Williams in the lawsuit brought years earlier by his sister-in-law.

The Gotts moved on to Washington County, Arkansas. Claiborn Gott died there in 1872. Elizabeth was still living at the time.

Pleasant Williams married Lucy Foust, daughter of John and Matilda Hawley Foust of Mountain Creek, in 1859.

Calvin Williams wound up at Benson, Ariz. He died there in 1917 at the age of 81. He married Martha Bearl Easterly and had nine children.

Doctors Made $5 House Calls In Samuel Williams' Day

Doctors made $5 house calls in Chattanooga's early days, according to the Samuel Williams papers that were discovered in an old downtown building last March.

Of course, $5 was a considerable sum in those days.

When Samuel's brother and close business partner, George W. Williams, was gravely ill in early August, 1842, he was attended at the home place by Dr. William Morrow.

Dr. Morrow was one of the surgeons to the volunteer troops who gathered at Ross's Landing in the late1830s for the removal of the Cherokees. He also treated the injuries and ailments of the native Americans who were being forced from their beloved homeland.

There is a notation of a visit by Dr. Morrow to G.W. Williams on Aug. 8, 1842. George had started out on a cattle drive and had become very ill almost immediately. He returned to the home place and lay there in his bed. Dr. Morrow's charge was $5.

Then there was this notation: "Aug. 9, 1842, George W. Williams to Dr. Milo Smith for visit in night. Medicine, etc. $6. Consultation with Drs. Morrow and Thornton $5. Mrs. George Williams to Dr. M. Smith."

G.W. Williams died that night at the Williams manor. He was just 33 years old.

Dr. Milo Smith was a beloved physician in Chattanooga's early days, and he was the city's mayor
in three different decades. Milo Smith, who was the same age as Samuel Williams, had gone to Philadelphia to study medicine. He had "a great deal of information on almost every subject pertaining to matters Biblical and historical, but especially physic.'' His was the leading medical practice, but he seemed almost unconcerned about whether or not he was paid. Dr. Smith was so well liked by the community that several babies were named in his honor.

Milo Smith had gone down river from Rhea County to the new Ross's Landing settlement where his
sister, Eliza, had moved with her husband, Capt. John P. Long. From the commissioners who laid out and were selling off Chattanooga lots, he purchased lot 38 on Poplar Street for $220 in 1840.
He wound up selling this lot and building on lot 42 nearby. At the time of the Indian removal, both Dr. Smith and his father worked with the government. In this capacity, Dr. Smith made several trips between Ross's Landing and the Indian Territory with the Cherokees. Dr. Smith was one of the founders of the Presbyterian Church at Chattanooga.

There are also these notations of doctor visits in the Williams papers:

1842. Oct. 26. Visit to negro child. $2.

1843. Jan. 7. Oil spike. .50. 1845. Three visits to negro boy and medicine. $2 per visit. Received full payment of Samuel Williams. Sept. 3, 1845.  

Sept. 2 visit son in night. Medicine, etc. $6.

Sept. 3. Visit to Pleasant. Catharic $2.50.

Sept. 4. Visit to Pleasant. Medicine, etc. $2.

Sept. 16. Visit to Jinny. Medicine, etc. $2.50.

Nov. 26. Visit to Calvin. Vial and urine, liniment, etc. $4.  

Dec. 15 Visit to Calvin, Jordan and Jack and medicine. $5. 

March 31, 1844. Extract tooth for self. $5.

May 23, 1845. Visit son when snake bit. $5.

Pleasant and Calvin were the two sons of the late George W. Williams Jr.

Others mentioned were Williams slaves.

It Took Years For Samuel Williams To Dig Out From Sister-In-Law's Lawsuit

Samuel Williams, known as "the Father of Chattanooga," may have won a lawsuit brought by his sister-in-law after a seven-year battle, but it took him years to dig out from the repercussions.

Details of the lawsuit are included in some 800 pages of intriguing court documents found last March behind a wall of an old downtown building.

Elizabeth Davis Williams, widow of Samuel's brother and close business partner George, brought the suit. It resulted in Samuel Williams having to try to round up all the money he could that had been owed to the firm as well as finding a way to pay its many debts.

He was hampered by the fact that his grand land venture with some wealthy capitalists was appearing to be a failure. Work had stopped on the promised railroad from Georgia and the countryside was beset with illness.

The lawsuit involved coming up with a detailed accounting of the debts he owed, the money owed him, and the value of all the farms and town lots that he had some interest in.

There was also a tussle over the home place itself in its beautiful setting overlooking Williams Island. Elizabeth had lived there with her husband, but afterward Samuel moved in and Elizabeth eventually found another place.

Before the court battle was over, the home place and all its pots and pans, horses and hogs had to go on the auction block.

Samuel Williams was able to forestall one sale just before it came off - fearing that the place would be forfeited for much below its true value due to the distressed times. At a second sale, Samuel Williams himself bid in much that was offered, and Capt. John P. Long bought items for the widow. The sale of the belongings was held at the home place. The land sale was at the Chattanooga Post Office, which was then on Market Street. 

One of the first debts was Aug. 9, 1842 - the day George W. Williams died - for one fine lined and trimmed coffin - $25.

Col. James A. Whiteside said, "Samuel Williams has given such attention (to his business) to a greater extent than any man I have ever known. The debts due to them were much scattered over the country and mostly bad. They had ceased the mercantile business some time before George died, and, being much embarrassed, had realized everything in their power in the way of cash collection and and stock, such as cattle, hogs or horses, before George died, leaving a tolerably large amount of debts due them. mostly bad.

"Samuel Williams has been involved in several harassing lawsuits from 1839-1850. One long and expensive suit was over the 14-acre fraction at Chattanooga involving the Carter, Boyce and Hines lands. It was settled in 1848 by dividing the 14 acres. The price of property in 1842, 1843 and 1844 was much depressed.

"With extraordinary exertions and sacrifices, Samuel Williams has saved the business from insolvency - a thing that seemed almost inevitable at the time of George's death and for some time after. He has, from want of education or business knowledge , not been able to proceed systematically as one better qualified could have done, but he has applied himself closely and industriously to the settlement of the complicated business thrown upon him. "  

Col. Whiteside noted that creditors in Baltimore "were alarmed about the solvency of the debtor and that the business of the firm was much embarrassed. Several of the claims were sent to Tennessee attorneys for collection. In order to save Samuel Williams' credit, I borrowed for him from Silas Williams a large portion of the proceeds of the cattle drive.

"There was a small portion of the Baltimore debts in the name of Williams & Oxley, which was dissolved in the spring of  1841. Samuel Williams assumed those payments. There has also been a firm of S. Williams & Bros. that had been dissolved before the death of G.W. Williams. Also dissolved was the firm of Williams, Whiteside & Co. in which James S. Edwards was involved. G&S Williams was to pay a debt I owed to James Eaton's administrator for about $100. I had given a note for a lot of corn bought at the sale of Eaton's property. The corn went to G&S Williams, which sold it to a contractor on the railroad. Joseph G. Smith had a small portion of the debt."  

Jeremiah Fryar, who had long known the Williams family, said, "Samuel Williams had some goods with John Divine. He has been driving stock and pretty much went to market himself. He has been persevering and energetic. He has always had a good deal of property about him I think. I have not known of him buying any land or Negroes since the death of G.W. Williams. He always said he was wrapping up the business of G&S Williams and was always pressed for money."  

Attorney and Congressman Reese Brabson said, "Sometime in the spring of 1847, Benjamin B. Cannon said to me he had taken the notes of Samuel Williams for costs in the Circuit Court and it seemed that he would never pay, always pleading that he was hard run. The notes amounted to $123. He said he would take $100, and I paid him that." 

Jesse G. Blackwell, who was a clerk for the Williams & Divine mercantile establishment as a young man, said Rezin Rawlings "held sundry notes against G&S Williams, which were paid off in coffee and cash. I was employed by Samuel Williams soon after the death of G.W. Williams to help in winding up the affairs of G&S Williams. I continued in that business for an extensive time."

Josiah M. Anderson recalled in his deposition given July 27, 1851, at Harrison, "James Pankey showed me a note he held on G&S Williams for about $25. He came to my house in 1844 and told me that Samuel Williams had paid part of the note and left the rest with me to be paid. Samuel Williams paid the balance to me - about $8. I paid Pankey the balance. He died a short time after."  

Items at the sale of the Williams estate in February 1845 included feather beds, two fall leaf tables, a candle stand, a side board, a set of knives and forks, a china press, a cupboard, two bureaus, a sofa, a candle stand, a set of knives and forks, 387 pounds of castings, four stacks of fodder, two plows, a set of blacksmith tools, a silver watch, a grindstone, five cribs of corn, three sets of gears, 3 files, a drawing knife, 2 augurs, a wagon, four head of horses, 14 bee hives, 185 head of cattle, 80 head of hogs, four pair of fire irons, a lot of bacon, a rifle gun, a silver watch, a rifle gun barrel.

This was "sold pursuant to the court at Cleveland at its March term 1844 in the case of Samuel Williams vs. Elizabeth Williams, the widow of George Williams. Feb. 1845. Signed Elizabeth Williams, Samuel Williams, John L. Divine and James A. Whiteside. Samuel Williams was conveyed all the property except the negro woman Ginny, negro boy Albert, three feather beds, bedsteads and furniture, bureau, table, set of knives and forks, colt, four cows, lot of bacon, 129 pounds of castings, 100 bushels of corn, three bee hives, which she the widow retained with the price bid for it at the sale of $890.58. That made the amount transferred to her $4,565.76.  Signed Samuel Williams February 1845.

It was also noted that on the death of G.W. Williams there were seven horses on hand. One, a gray mare, was worth $100. One that was "moon-eyed" sold for $50. The moon-eyed one went blind and Samuel Williams had to compromise with the purchaser by taking off $25 in work done on the home place before the land was sold by order of Chancery Court. Williams sold one horse to the lawyer T. Nixon VanDyke for about $70, and one died before the Chancery sale. One sold for $40 in lumber, but it was never collected. The purchaser, Allen White, soon afterward became insolvent. 

Accounts and debts due the firm of Williams & Oxley included "three of four or perhaps a half dozen inferior shotguns sold by G&S Williams at auction."  Williams paid Joshua W. Hunter, deputy sheriff, $10 for collecting debt of J.S. Martin. Samuel Williams bought two oxen for $70 - one from Allen White and the other from Samuel Sutton. 

One of the court documents said: Pleas in the Court House of the Town of Harrison, County of Hamilton, and the State aforesaid, on the fourth Monday, being the 27th day of March, 1843, and in the 67th year of the Independence of the United States. Judge Charles F. Keith of the Circuit Court. Joseph G. Smith, James S. Edwards and William A. Caldwell are firmly bound to Samuel Williams in the sum of $200, and they are commencing a legal action against him. Sheriff is to summon Samuel Williams to court the fourth Monday of March to answer Joseph G. Smith and James S. Edwards trading as Smith Edwards & Company on a plea of trespass on their damage of $1,000. Clerk B.B. Cannon. 

Another was a summons to Joseph G. Smith, James S. Edwards and Samuel Williams. L. Guthrie, deputy sheriff. It said Samuel Williams was indebted to them for $450.05 "for divers goods, wares and merchandise." Whiteside & Brabson were attorneys for Samuel Williams.

Judges involved in the case included The Honorable E. Alexander, Circuit Court Judge, who put down an order to take the deposition of Alpheous L. Edwards. Others were The Honorable Charles E. Keith, Circuit Court Judge, and The Honorable Seth Lucky, Circuit Court Judge.

A jury in one of the cases was made up of Lewis Patterson, John Brown Jr., William Evitt, George Irwin, Hiram Cornwall, Absalom Selcer, Washington Gann, Henry Penick, George L. Rains, James G. Tenor, R.G. Chitwood and John Chestnut. They were "All good and lawful men of Hamilton County who being elected, tried and sworn to well and truly try the issues joined." A.G.W. Puckett was the clerk. It was a day when only white males served on juries. 

A jury in 1850 included George W. Gardenhire, Gibson Witt, Jesse Walker, R. Hamill, Samuel Hunter, B. Lusk, John Julian, Samuel T. Igou, Bird Irwin, George Waller, James R. Johnson and Samuel Julian.

December 1850. John A. Hooke, justice of the peace. Judge Charles Keith. Ruling that Samuel Williams, John A. Minnis and James Clift are bound unto Joseph G. Smith, James S. Edwards and John S. Edwards, late merchants and partners, trading under the name of Smith, Edwards & Co. in the amount of $881.36. Samuel Williams to take an appeal to the Appeals Court in Knoxville. Andrew G.W. Puckett clerk. Sheriff John Johnson. Deputy Sheriff Thomas D. Conner. Deputy Sheriff Jesse G. Blackwell. Witnesses G.W. Dearing, G.D. Foster, West Shelley, T.M. Capps, John Norman, Obediah Patty, John A. Hooke, Larkin Hair, John A. Godsey, Samuel Cross and Brittain Riddle.

John Norman said Allen White "hired all the hands and Samuel Williams paid all. White paid us off and stopped work and said he would stop buying so many goods. Williams said when he came back he would have goods of his own to pay with when they went with the hogs.

Silas Williams promises to pay Richard Haney $75 in silver. 1839. Note to Hasten Poe 1842. Jesse Williams receives payment on note from S.W. July 4, 1848. July 25, 1842. Promise to pay Joseph Vandergriff $37 which may be discharged by two barrels of salt and dry goods delivered to the house where George Williams now lives. Promise to pay T. Nixon Van Dyke $25. March 28, 1842. Promise to pay Jerry Fryar $150. Nov. 25, 1842. Pay Samuel Hamill on assessment for C. Milliken. May 28, 1842. Promise to pay John P. Long $32 - payment of an execution on Dillon P. Tayor. June 1, 1842. Slone & Owens received of Samuel Williams. Feb. 1844. Promise to pay Meredith Coffee. July 1842. Isham Perkins 1841. Alex Hanna. Promise to pay Bryant & Underwood. March 1840. A.C. McKamey. August 1842. To pay Josiah Lusk $50 in silver. June 1846. Pay Rector Preston $22.50 in Central Bank of Georgia notes. July 25, 1842. Pay William C. Murdock. June 10, 1842. Anderson & Bennett. 333 pounds bacon hams at 12 cents per pound scrip. $39.96. 1,234 pounds bacon at 10 cents per pound scrip. $133.40. Settlement with Robert Griffith. $7.84. Total $181.20. 10 and 23 pounds of lard total 33 at 10 cents. $3.30. Loaned Samuel W. Monroe. R.R. $1. Total $185.50. Credit boarding B.L.B. $5.00. Total $180.50. Borrowed of J.L. Edwards. $30. Total $210.50. 27 pounds salt. 81 cents. 73 pounds of bones. $1.10. 75 pounds of heads. 75 cents. 23 pounds salt. 69 cents. 45 pounds of salt. $1.35. 115 pounds of pork $4.60. Borrowed of J.L. Edward $8.50. Total $17.80. Anderson & Bennett. Burrell L. Bennett. 1842.William Clark. Samuel Thatcher. Nancy Yearout. Aug. 16, 1840. Daniel J. Rawlings. April 6, 1842. A.B. Beason. $11 due Supreme Court at Knoxville in case of Henry Tymannus vs. Samuel Williams. Judgment was against Williams and James A. Whiteside. James C. Francis, sheriff of Hamilton County, 1847. Judgment in the estate of James W. Smith recovered against John K. Farmer and Samuel Williams. Nov. 25, 1842. Judgment John Sappington recovered against G&S Williams for $22. Nov. 5, 1846. Suit against Gross Scruggs. Lewis Tyner claims $16.02 for attendance at court. Sept. 20, 1845. Note of G.W. Williams and Allen White to Wesley Davis. Now the property of James Kelly. July 30, 1844. R. Henderson attorney for Kelly. Samuel Williams, executor of the estate of G.W. Williams. William Jefferson Rogers clerk. Nov. 3,1845. 

F.A. Parham, who printed the first newspaper at Chattanooga, on June 8, 1847 received of Samuel Williams $8.62 and half cents - the balance for advertising printing bills for the sale of G&S Williams personal property by order of the Chancery Court at Cleveland. The subscription to the Parham newspaper, the Gazette, was $3 per year.

Received from Samuel Williams $1.15 for boarding hands for G&S Williams. Henry Cornett. January 11, 1843. Promise to pay Henry Long $50 for value received of him. July 23, 1839. G&S Williams. Samuel Williams account with James Eaton. March 1840. Wagons and hands stacking oats. $2. April Two days wagon and hands. $7. April 6. Half day wagon and hands. $1.37. July. Two days wagon and hands. $3. Three and a half hands finding themselves and shucking corn. $2.37 and 1/2. 180 bushels of corn shucked. $4.50. March 1842. Larkin Johnson. James Eaton.

Accounts of G&S Williams with John S. Godsey for one year labor. April 11, 1841 to April 11, 1842. $134. 1841. S. Williams to Absalom Sivley for hauling corn for three and a half days at $3 per day. 1841 for hauling boat gunnels. For one bushel of corn by John Godsey. For one new meal bag and two and 1/2 bushels of corn. George W. Williams to Gest & Caldwell. Feb. 6, 1841. Cutting coat and vest for John Taylor. April. Making cloth pants. Making cloth vest. Four skanes silk. Lining coat skirt. Two set of buttons. Making a lasting coat. Four skanes silk. Padding. Mending cassimere pants.

John P. Long. Jan. 29, 1842, appeared before Justice William M. Davis and recovered a judgment against Willis Fields and George Williams for four dollars and eight cents and one dollar and twenty five cents. John A. Hooke.

Estate of George Williams. John P. Long receipt. Oct. 1, 1842. James Goodman receipt. Aug. 21, 1842. G&S. Williams to Clinton Armstrong. May 1838. for one double barrel and half barrel lard - about 600 pounds. $48. Clinton Armstrong appeared before C.M. Renau, justice of the peace of Hawkins County. Received payment of Samuel Williams on Jan. 6, 1845. Robert C. McRee. December 1840 and 1841. Boat lumber $135. McRee appeared before A.G.W. Puckett, justice of the peace, Sept. 2, 1844. Paid in full by Samuel Williams. Account with Henry Long. Feb. 6, 1842. 250 bushels of corn at 25 cents per bushel. Total $62.50. Received full payment of Samuel Williams. June 1844. Order to Thomas Kelly for one --- of salt. June 3, 1844. 

Account with Elisha Lee for brandy. Before T.W. Spice acting justice of the peace. Oct. 17, 1842. Account with William Clift, boat delivered by Emerson Roberts.. November 1841.

Boarding Pleasant Williams $7. Before Samuel A. McKenzie, acting justice of the peace Feb. 27, 1847. Received by George D. Foster. Payment to Wiley Webb. Lumber for George Williams and myself. George Williams agreed to pay all expenses, including boats and lumber. Appeared Burgess Longwith before Pleasant McBride acting justice of the peace April 24, 1843. 

Dec. 21, 1842. G&S Williams account with J&S Martin. Bar of lead. To T. Nixon Van Dyke for fee in the Chancery Court at Cleveland. Cleveland vs. Wayland. And in the Supreme Court at Knoxville. Bruce vs. Williams. $90.Aug. 23, 1840 promise to pay Martin Reece 400 bushels of good sound corn. 1842 to William Runyan for one boat got of A.C. McKamy for $10. Runyan appeared before Cornelius Milliken, justice of the peace 1843. 

Account to Brttain Riddle. Pair of chains $1.50. Pair of hems $1. Repairing wagon wheel $1.50. One carryall bed $8. Pay to Thomas P. Kelly $2.35 April 1, 1841. Pay Colonel James A. Whiteside $40 May 30, 1841. Paid Benjamin F. Bridgman $18.88 Nov. 16, 1843. Samuel Williams paid $10.75 to Henry Jones Dec. 2, 1842.

Attorney Spencer Jarnagin received a $60 fee from Samuel Williams in the cases of George Rice vs. Samuel Williams and Rogers & Stringer against Dowell & Godsey at Circuit Court in Bradley County. Aug. 2, 1842. Darby D. McClure received $30.45 of G&S Williams by hands of Williams & Divine. James McSpaden due $9.50 Oct. 9, 1841. Promise to pay John and Willis Sanders $91.30 in good current bank notes or dry goods Aug. 13, 1838. Silas Williams. Jan. 18, 1841. Witness Thomas Oxley. Witnesses J.G. Blackwell, J.A. Minnis.

Due Mr. Vail $1. May 14, 1841. Pr. James S. Edwards. James A. Whiteside received $42.15 for 30 grants issued in the name of George W. Williams, Samuel Williams and James A. Whiteside. F.W. Lea. May 7, 1850. Rawlings & Divine due $60 in Georgia state script. June 17, 1842. $20 due George W. Evans Jan. 18, 1843. $100 in Georgia state script due Rawlings & Divine. Account with R.M. Rawlings. Pay Samuel Hamill $47 April 15, 1842. Reese B. Brabson received of Samuel Williams $53.35 as the full amount of a judgment and costs for J&S. Martin May 8, 1843. $500 judgment against G&S Williams for Green H. Pryor in Hamilton County Circuit Court June 6, 1844. James A. Whiteside attorney for Pryor. John Godsey received $100 judgment. 

G.H. Pryor sent a letter on July 21, 1844 concerning a debt. "I rec. your letter stated you send by mr. Godsey $150 but there was not that amount I received $140.30 which will be credited he will tell you all about it Colonel Whiteside will explain to you about the judgment and execution and I will see you when you come over to see the cattle as you wrote you would come the cattle will be up about the 10th of August and I wish to sell, yours G.H. Pryor.

Received of Kennedy & Ramsey, commissioners, $3, his tax for preferences on the fraction, Chattanooga 1842. A. Kelly, one of the commissioners. Received of G.W. Williams for ferriages at my ferry Feb. 24, 1843. William Hughs. Due Samuel Nelaby May 2, 1842. Promise to pay Joseph Lovelady March 1842. Received of Samuel Williams the full amount of a judgment which James R. Peck recovered against W.G. Sparks, Samuel Williams and Richard Henderson at the Supreme Court at Knoxville September 1844. James F. Bradford attorney for plaintiff by his agent Reese B. Brabson. Judgment for Caleb E. Pleasant & Company against Samuel Williams before John A. Hooke, Esq. May 1843.

April 11, 1840. S. Williams & Brothers to Archable Brown, Jesse Smith, Neal Lang. Note on Blackburn Higgins. Jesse Walker vs. Samuel Williams & partners. Stayed by John L. Divine. Judgment to Chandler & Rogers. Pay to Missouri Clack August 1843. Pay Russell Peck. Allen White. Due Benjamin Ford March 4, 1839. 

Samuel Williams bought of William Clift plank sheeting total $23.77. Pay R.M. Rawlings for Jeremiah Fryar note June 1842. Pay Reubin S. Taylor Sept. 5, 1842. Note to James A. Johnson for $1 Nov. 10, 1842. Promise to pay R.M. Aycock April 11, 1842. Silas Williams. Assign note of F.A. Parham. J.B. Perkins received of Samuel Williams. To James Williford. Pay to John Vail. Pay Cornelius Milliken $2.10 for Obed Patty's work. Pay David Little March 20, 1844. To pay James Tankesley $26.50 in Tennessee or Alabama money. Feb. 27, 1844. Account with Stephen Perkins for making two roads - one on either side of the river $15 each. 78 days work by George Isaac 1840 at 25 cents per day. $2 for wintering a yearling. Order to John Henry. Witness John Godsey. April 1841 3 new shoes $1.12 1/2. 

Judgment that Jonathan Con recovered against Samuel Williams. Due Ignatius Hall. To O. Clark, to A. Beason for keeping horse. Pay William Carmichael, agent for W.S.M. & Company, on note of $693 due March 2, 1840. Note was presented for payment before the death of G.W. Williams. Fall of 1833 S. Williams made a bill for $333, balance on the note paid in Baltimore in 1843. William Archer paid $8.43 January 1845. Gross Scruggs note to J&S Hicks due Feb. 23, 1837. Draft on Talbot, Jones & Co. Paid to Thomas Elems. Assigned by Elems & Co. to Thomas Patterson & Co. John C. Mallay, attorney at law. Promise to pay Alexander Boyd. Aug. 3, 1839. John Haley.

Received of Samuel Williams $2,692 as judgment in Hamilton County Circuit Court. Jesse Williams by his agent Jesse G. Blackwell July 25, 1850. A.G.W. Puckett clerk. Promise to pay P&R Edwards. Note at Branch Bank of Tennessee, Athens. Samuel Williams promises to pay James. A. Whiteside. Due McCallie & Hooke $5 in Central Bank bills June 15, 1842. Promise to pay Thomas McCallie $31 to be paid in Georgia state script April 16, 1842. Paid in settlement of rent corn except for half the rent on a piece of land attended by Peter Sivley in 1840. Allen White executes notes to Robert Jack Jan. 31, 1843. Account with R.M. Hooke 35 plank ceiling 12 foot long 11 inches wide 385 feet $2.30. Hauling and furnishing 5 loads of wood to kiln $2.50. Received of Samuel Williams payment for house and lot. Verbal order assumed for J.R. Bell and George D. Foster, $15 each. Received of Morgan Wilburn note on J.B. Nickells 1841. Account of William Hixon 1840 and 1841. Lumber, ferriage account, boat account. Paid to E. Hixon. 

James King for the use of G&S Williams vs. Gross Scruggs. Circuit Court March 1845.Judgment rendered against Samuel Williams. Lewis Tyner paid $22 as witness. 1842 to J.S. Edwards & Brothers, amount paid Rockholt, White 21 pounds of iron, White 295 pounds iron for timber wheels, Blackwell to balance ball twine, White to amount paid Massengill, 37 pounds iron. John A. Hooke, justice of the peace. 1842 to Smith Edwards & Co. Amount paid Thomas Jones, pair of shoes, another pair of shoes, two spades, trimmings.

Suit against A.L. Edwards, John S. Edwards, James S. Edwards on a note executed by them April 1843. Payable to George Stephens. Eight cases of execution now in the hands of John Mitchell, a constable of Lookout Valley. Suit Samuel Williams vs. M.P. Light. A.B. Beason.

Attorney Richard Henderson was paid for his service in the Chancery Court at Pikeville. William Gardenhire and others were the plaintiffs against Samuel Williams in the suit from Oct. 29, 1843.

Clerks had to transcribe the large volume of legal documents and depositions. One entry tells of payment to B.K. Mynatt, deputy clerk and master of the Chancery Court of Harrison, Tn., for a copy of the decree in the case of Thomas Crutchfield Vs. John Vail containing 1,080 words at 10 cents per hundred  - 108 certificates thereto $1.33. March 25, 1847.

There was out-of-state litigation as well: In Walker Superior Court. G&S Williams V. Robert Lumpkin. Walker Inferior Court. G&S Williams vs. Edey Bevert, administrator of William Bevert. Walker Inferior Court. May 1843. Williams Whiteside & Co. vs. A. Holcomb Haynes & Co. Murray Supreme Court. Sept. 28, 1842. C.J. Hooper, attorney at law, LaFayette, Walker County. May 22, 1843. Promise to pay Charles Hooper. Received of Chandler Rogers & Co.Oct. 26, 1843. Simpson Albright. Dec. 29, 1841. William King & Co. Jan. 30, 1843. Received of Samuel Williams his note for $90 to be paid for three salt boats, one salt boat yet to be settled for.  Edley Bevert clerk. Samuel Hamill. Gross Scruggs, administrator of the estate of James Eaton. July 12, 1844. For the use of Lucy Eaton and Larkin Johnson, administrators of the estate against Joseph G. Smith and James A. Whiteside. James Roberts for the use of Hope Graham. Feb. 8, 1845. Abel Beason note, Gideon Lovelady note. Received of M.D. Bearden, administrator of a note of L. Guthrie & Brother. January 13, 1842. Parham & Kennedy. May 1844. Dade County, Ga., Hugh Kennedy, justice of the peace. Sulphur Spring. Aug. 12, 1842. George Williams Jr. to Rogers & Collins. for tuition at Sulphur Spring in 1842. $1.46. State of Alabama, Jackson County. Richard R. Gist appears before Robert Shelton, justice of the peace. Received of Samuel Williams, administrator of the estate of George W. Williams, payment in full. June 30, 1847.   

It was a time when banks were not so well established and much business was handled through "notes" and "accounts" at a store.

Notes outstanding at the time of the death of G.W. Williams included William Bansit, John Boydston, Elizabeth Brown, David Cunningham, Alfred Davis, James Dobbins, Solomon Easter, S.S. Condray, J. Fryar, William Fryar, John K. Farmer, William Gaut, Gwinn & Hanna, John Godsey, Milus Haines, R. Henderson, Lewis Hall, Bart Killian, McKinney Lovelady, Samuel M. Levi, M.P. Light, Joseph Murphy, Allen Parker, Stephen Perkins, S.L. Pace, T.R. Porter, Martin Reece, A.S. Rogers, West Shelly, Lampkin Sherrill, Alfred Sparks, W.G. Sparks, N.B. Taylor, Lewis Tyner, James Varnell, S. Williams, Green Woodlee and Jesse Walden.  

Accounts at G&S Williams at the time of the death of G.W. Williams included John Boydston, Reuben Brown, John M. Bruce, Thomas Bryant, Austin Buffington, William Clift, Laban Condray, Sterling Condray, James Conner, John Daugherty, John Hilliard (do not know the man), John C. Haley, William Hixson, A.H. Johnson, Joseph Johnson, Ann Kenney (not collected but good and will be soon), John Keeney (it is understood he lives in Franklin County), James Kincaid, James Lee (never knew who he was), George Levi, D.F. Locke, Henry Long, McKinney Lovelady, D.D. McClure, W.A. Moore, Samuel Ramsey (never knew who he was),  Rezin Rawlings, Allen Parker, Elisha Parker, James Roddy, Gross Scruggs, Isom Sharp, Adam Simmons, Miles A. Simmons, George Sivley, Lawrence Sivley, Peter Sivley, Joseph G. Smith, Robert Smith, W.G. Sparks,  Robert Swinney, Samuel Thatcher, John Tyner (settled with work on the mills), Thomas Vinsant,  David Walker, A.S. Wilkins, James Williford, John Wilson, John Woods (lives in Georgia), Rhea, Ross & Co. (insolvent), McCallie & Hooke.

These accounts were settled: E.D. Bevans, S. Farris, Jonathan Fielding, W.K. Hargroves, Jacob Hartman, R. Henderson, William Hixon, James Keeney, John Kellum (paid for work done), Josiah Lusk, R.C. McCree, J.A. Minnis, B.R. Montgomery, Armsted Redman, William Roberts, Gross Scruggs, B. Smith, Floyd Tanner, J.E. Taylor, J.C. Tipton, John Vail (considerable account against him that was settled in connection to the Brainerd Mills), J. Ward, Allen White, Whiteside (a horse for $45), J. Williams, Williams & Oxley.

Samuel Williams notes: George Elliott, A. Hillian, Thomas Clark, Benjamin Clark, William Davis, Miller F. Rice, Levi Isbill, Hugh Martin of J&S Martin, Joseph Rogers, Levi Trewhitt, X.G. McFarland, David Hixson, John Haley, Elias Welborn, James S. Edwards, William Isbill, Jeremiah Fryar, B.B. Cannon clerk (1845), Berry Brown, R.A. Ramsey for 30 head of hogs, Richard Haney $70 in silver, J.L. Divine, Hasten Poe, Jesse Williams, John Vail, J.M. Anderson.

Silas Williams promises to pay Richard Haney $75 in silver. 1839. Note to Hasten Poe 1842. Jesse Williams receives payment on note from S.W. July 4, 1848. July 25, 1842. Promise to pay Joseph Vandergriff $37 which may be discharged by two barrels of salt and dry goods delivered to the house where george williams now lives. Promise to pay T. Nixon Van Dyke $25. March 28, 1842. Promise to pay Jerry Fryar $150. Nov. 25, 1842. Pay Samuel Hamill on assessment for C. Milliken. May 28, 1842. Promise to pay John P. Long $32 - payment of an execution on Dillon P. Tayor. June 1, 1842. Slone & Owens received of Samuel Williams. Feb. 1844. Promise to pay Meredith Coffee. July 1842. Isham Perkins 1841. Alex Hanna. Promise to pay Bryant & Underwood. March 1840. A.C. McKamey. August 1842. To pay Josiah Lusk $50 in silver. June 1846. Pay Rector Preston $22.50 in Central Bank of Georgia notes. July 25, 1842. Pay William C. Murdock. June 10, 1842. Anderson & Bennett. 333 pounds bacon hams at 12 cents per pound scrip. $39.96. 1,234 pounds bacon at 10 cents per pound scrip. $133.40. Settlement with Robert Griffith. $7.84. Total $181.20. 10 and 23 pounds of lard total 33 at 10 cents. $3.30. Loaned Samuel W. Monroe. R.R. $1. Total $185.50. Credit boarding B.L.B. $5.00. Total $180.50. Borrowed of J.L. Edwards. $30. Total $210.50. 27 pounds salt. 81 cents. 73 pounds of bones. $1.10. 75 pounds of heads. 75 cents. 23 pounds salt. 69 cents. 45 pounds of salt. $1.35. 115 pounds of pork $4.60. Borrowed of J.L. Edward $8.50. Total $17.80. Anderson & Bennett. Burrell L. Bennett. 1842.William Clark. Samuel Thatcher. Nancy Yearout. Aug. 16, 1840. Daniel J. Rawlings. April 6, 1842. A.B. Beason. 

Jesse G. Blackwell said, "Samuel Williams paid debts of G&S Williams. Around $1,100. He used about $6,000 of the effects of G&S Williams in paying off the debts. I think he has paid about $8,000 of the firm's debts. Samuel Williams made bills of exchange payable at the Union Bank of Maryland of Baltimore, which bills were discounted at the Branch Bank of Tennessee at Athens. The proceeds of those bills were used in the purchase of livestock, such as hogs and cattle, which were driven to market. The profits made were invariably applied to the debts of G&S Williams. Samuel Williams in some cases has given his individual note to pay the debts. And by his untiring exertions he has paid many debts in different ways.

"Almost every trade was made between Samuel Williams and John Divine.I think Samuel Williams has bought some livestock with debts due to the late firm of Williams & Oxley, but I am not positive as to Williams and Divine. The amount discounted was many thousands of dollars. The most of the bills were discounted at the branch of the State Bank of Tennessee of Athens. One I recollect was discounted in the Planters Bank and one was at the Union Bank at Nashville. 

"I recollect of Samuel Williams paying debt to George Elliott of Alabama of about $100, Elias Wilburn about $400, Rector Preston near $50, R. Henderson attorney for either Peck or Kelly over $100, John Sappington over $100, the administrator of James Eaton, dec. near $100, Berry Brown, Green H. Pryor about $1,300, and many others made at different times and different places." 

The tallies of the debts and assets were not finished by Clerk and Master William I. Standefer until almost a decade later. In the end, Samuel Williams had to dip into his personal assets to pay off the balance of what the store owed and never was able to collect from some debtors.

Received of Kennedy & Ramsey, commissioners, $3, his tax for preferences on the fraction, Chattanooga 1842. A. Kelly, one of the commissioners. Received of G.W. Williams for ferriages at my ferry Feb. 24, 1843. 

Samuel Williams bought of William Clift plank, sheeting total $23.77. Pay R.M. Rawlings for Jeremiah Fryar note June 1842. Pay Reubin S. Taylor Sept. 5, 1842. Note to James A. Johnson for $1 Nov. 10, 1842. Promise to pay R.M. Aycock April 11, 1842. Silas Williams. Assign note of F.A. Parham. J.B. Perkins received of Samuel Williams. To James Williford. Pay to John Vail. To B.K. Mynatt, deputy clerk and master of the Chancery Court of Harrison Tennessee  for a copy of the decree int he case of Thomas Crutchfield Vs. John Vail containing 1080 words at 10 cents per hundred  - 108 certificates thereto $1.33 March 25, 1847. Pay Cornelius Milliken $2.10 for Obed Patty's work. Pay David Little March 20, 1844. To pay James Tankesley $26.50 in Tennessee or Alabama money. Feb. 27, 1844. Account with Stephen Perkins for making two roads - one on either side of the river $15 each. 78 days work by George Isaac 1840, at 25 cents per day. $2 for wintering a yearling. Order to John Henry. Witness John Godsey. April 1841 3 new shoes $1.12 1/2. 

Pay William Carmichael, agent for W.S.M. & Company, on note of $693 due March 2, 1840. Note was presented for payment before the death of G.W. Williams. Fall of 1833 S. Williams made a bill for $333, balance on the note paid in Baltimore in 1843. William Archer paid $8.43 January 1845. Gross Scruggs note to J&S Hicks due Feb. 23, 1837. Draft on Talbot, Jones & Co. Paid to Thomas Elems. Assigned by Elems & Co. to Thomas Patterson & Co. John C. Mallay, attorney at law. Promise to pay Alexander Boyd. Aug. 3, 1839. John Haley.

Elizabeth Brown recovered of Samuel Williams. Sept. 1842. J.W. Hunter deputy sheriff. G&S Williams vs. Asa Dickson. Oct. 9, 1841. Sold to A.H. Johnson. In Walker Superior Court. G&S Williams V. Robert Lumpkin. Walker Inferior Court. G&S Williams vs. Edey Bevert, administrator of William Bevert. Walker Inferior Court. May 1843. Williams Whiteside & Co. vs. A. Holcomb Haynes & Co. Murray Supreme Court. Sept. 28, 1842. C.J. Hooper, attorney at law, LaFayette, Walker County. May 22, 1843. Promise to pay Charles Hooper. Received of Chandler Rogers & Co.Oct. 26, 1843. Simpson Albright. Dec. 29, 1841. William King & Co. Jan. 30, 1843. Received of Samuel Williams his note for $90 to be paid for three salt boats, one salt boat yet to be settled for.  Edley Bevert clerk. Samuel Hamill. Gross Scruggs, administrator of the estate of James Eaton. July 12, 1844. For the use of Lucy Eaton and Larkin Johnson, administrators of the estate against Joseph G. Smith and James A. Whiteside. James Roberts for the use of Hope Graham. Feb. 8, 1845. Abel Beason note, Gideon Lovelady note. Received of M.D. Bearden, administrator of a note of L. Guthrie & Brother. January 13, 1842. Parham & Kennedy. May 1844. Dade County, Ga., Hugh Kennedy, justice of the peace. Matthew Cunningham said he saw a certain pale red steer in Georgia at time Samuel Williams was driving cattle to the East in the summer of 1842. The steer belonged to William Killian of my neighborhood. February 1844. Received of John Perkins on a note that William Davis holds. Aug. 4, 1842.  

Promise to pay P&R Edwards. Note at Branch Bank of Tennessee, Athens. Samuel Williams promises to pay James. A. Whiteside. Due McCallie & Hooke $5 in Central Bank bills June 15, 1842. Promise to pay Thomas McCallie $31 to be paid in Georgia state script April 16, 1842. Paid in settlement of rent corn except for half the rent on a piece of land attended by Peter Sivley in 1840. Allen White executes notes to Robert Jack Jan. 31, 1843. Account with R.M. Hooke 35 plank ceiling 12 foot long 11 inches wide 385 feet $2.30. Hauling and furnishing 5 loads of wood to kiln $2.50. Received of Samuel Williams payment for house and lot. Verbal order assumed for J.R. Bell and George D. Foster, $15 each. Received of Morgan Wilburn note on J.B. Nickells 1841. Account of William Hixon 1840 and 1841. Lumber, ferriage account, boat account. Paid to E. Hixon. 

1842 to J.S. Edwards & Brothers, amount paid Rockholt, White 21 pounds of iron, White 295 pounds iron for timber wheels, Blackwell to balance ball twine, White to amount paid Massengill, 37 pounds iron. John A. Hooke, justice of the peace. 1842 to Smith Edwards & Co. Amount paid Thomas Jones, pair of shoes, another pair of shoes, two spades, trimmings.

Liabilities that have been settled and paid:

John P. Swinney Aug. 24, 1840 $21.51
balance on two notes on S. Williams to Nancy Yearout $4.67
note to Samuel Hamill April 15, 1842 $47.39
note to Underwood & Bryant Aug. 13, 1842 $23.30
note to Samuel McCallie May 2, 1842 $6.50
note to John A. Rowell Aug. 6, 1841 $36 plus $3.87 interest
note to X.G. McFarland May 24, 1842 $63.83 plus 94 cents interest
account Silas Williams vs G&S Williams Jan. 9, 1843 $23.98
account Henry Cornett Jan. 9, 1843 $1.15
note to McCallie and Hooke May 25, 1842 $20 plus 40 cents interest
account S.S. Thatcher Sept. 28, 1842 $52.50
note to William Davis due December 1842 $63.50
account Gideon Lovelady May 11, 1843 $14
note to Jeremiah Friar due Dec. 25, 1842 $17.62
note to Mrs. Vail due May 14, 1841 $1
paid to J. Hooper attorney fee May 22, 1843 $25.39
tax to Town Com. for 1842 $3
balance note due to William Isbil due Dec. 25, 1842 $6
note to McCallie & Hooke due June 16, 1842 $20
note to R.M. Rawlings due Dec. 25, 1842 $11.36
balance on note due to R.M. Rawlings due May 9, 1842 $46.65
cost in Inferior Court, LaFayette, Ga. $11 
note to McCallie due June 15, 1842 $5
note to E. Burris due April 2, 1842 
balance on S. Williams note to R.M. Rawlings due May 9, 1842 $15.37
note to Jeremiah Friar due Nov. 2, 1842 $150
paid James M. Anderson Jan. 9, 1840 $20
balance on note to J.P. Long due June 1, 1842 $14
note to J. Fryar due Sept. 7, 1842 S. Williams $30
account J&S Martin Jan. 1843 $8.85
balance on note to Thomas McCallie Sept. 29, 1842 $30
account A. Clark $3.25
note to Chandler & Rogers due Jan. 12, 1843 $6
balance on note to Josiah M. Anderson due Jan. 16, 1841 $102.69
note to McCallie and Hooke June 14, 1842 $15
note to Jerry Friar due Dec. 25, 1842 $165
amount of execution E. Brown vs. S. Williams, J.W. Hunter deputy sheriff March 30, 1843 $23
William Smith administrator Nov. 25, 1842 $41
balance note to John Vail May 14, 1841 Williams, Whiteside & Co. $44.02
note to Missouri Clack Oct. 1, 1842 $10.30 plus 25 cents interest
note to R.M. Rawlings due Sept. 6, 1842 $7.02
account of R.M. Rawlings Dec. 17, 1842 $45.02
note to S.S. Thatcher due July 20, 1842 $49.67 plus 90 cents interest
2 notes given to Rawlings & Divine June 17, 1842 for $160 in scrip, discounted at 35 percent $104
sundry judgments J&S Martin vs G&S Williams recovered in J.A. Hooke Esq's office July 22, 1842 and paid Nov. 25, 1842 $542.64
note to Cornelius Milliken May 28, 1842 $2.10
note to Thomas Clark June 28, 1842 $24
judgment John Sappington vs. Williams, Whiteside & Co. L. Guthrie deputy sheriff $130 
note to W.C. Murdock for $50 in Georgia scrip and discounted at 35 percent $32.50
note to William Stringer March 29, 1842 $2.50
note to M. Coffee due July 26, 1842 $7.50
note to George Fagle due Oct. 3 1842 $5.56
note to Berry Brown due July 26, 1842 $74.50 interest $1.32
note to Joseph Rogers due July 26, 1842 $19.70
L. Guthrie receipt covering a note given by Samuel Williams to R.L. Gamble due Oct. 28, 1842 $52.38
account Archibald Lawson vs G&S Williams $2.37
note to R. Hudson due April 17, 1843 $5
note to Wesley Connor due May 11, 1842 $13.46
balance on note to Joseph Lovelady due March 5,1842 $28
account M.B. Parham vs Samuel Williams $2
account R.M. Rawlings vs Williams & White $46.26
note to Benjamin Lindle due March 19,1840 $44.50
note to William Davis due Nov. 21, 1842 $3.25
note Chandler & Rogers vs S. Williams Jan. 4,1843 $193 interest $4.64
balance on note to Russell Peck due Dec.2, 1839 $13.73
note to Samuel Hamill due May 28,1842 $4.37
note to D.J. Rawlings due Sept. 6,1842 $10
note to William Clark due Feb.13,1842 $9.75
note to A.H. Glascock due May 26,1840 by Williams & Oxley $5.20
G&S Williams receipt to John Perkins Aug. 4,1842 $3
note to William Isbill due Dec.19, 1842 Samuel Williams $1.25
note to Eliza Burkhart due Nov.r 22 1842 $5
post office account to postmaster Chattanooga March 30, 1843 $4.33
balance on note to Benjamin Ford due March 4,1839 $2
note to A.C. McCamy due April 24,1842 $13
balance on account to Chandler & Rogers $59.90
account for making shoes March 14,1843 $1
note to David Hixon due July 26, 1842 $21
note to H. Poe due July 28, 1842 $8.38
James A. Johnson receipt Aug. 12, 1842 $1.20
account Rogers & Collins Aug. 12, 1842 $4.38
balance on note to J. Vail due Dec. 7, 1840 Williams, Whiteside & Co. $104 and $10.46 interest
note to Ignatius Hall due March 22, 1842 $11.37
account William Hughs vs. G&S Williams for ferriage $5
balance on note to M. Reece Aug. 23, 1843 $63
balance on note to J. Hanna given by G&S Williams $7.70
note to James Eaton due May 6, 1839, $32.50 plus $4 interest
To the Branch Bank at Athens, Ga. on George & Samuel Williams note due Oct. 4, 1842, of call on renewals up to June 4, 1844, $402, and interest to same date $57.98  = $459.98
Paid tax due Hamilton County for 1842 $87.57
Paid taxes on land and property for 1843 $55.87
Note to James Pankey of S. Williams & Bro. $26.50
balance note to James McSpadden due Oct. 9, 1841 $5.00
sundry debts due in the city of Baltimore and paid by James A. Whitewide in Sep 1862 to  H. H. Brown, W. & S. Wyman, Watkins, Dungan & Rust, Talbot, Jones & Co., Charles H. Fischer & Co., Norris & Beatty, Canfield & Bros., Jacob Rogers & Son, Noah Walker, Kempe & Buckeye, $200 to T. Jones & Co. for McCallie & Hooke, $200 to same for Blehandler, $550 to Thomas Apley of Va., and $33.59 of tavern bills on road, or previous years – all totaling $3,963.37
Sums placed to the credit of G&S Williams on the account of Williams & Divine
amt. Received on Mrs. Brown's note, $259.65
judgment on A. Redman $10.30
coffee & cash paid R. M. Rawlings $173.33
Williams & Whiteside's accpimt. with Rawlings $46.26
Cash rec'd of Floyd Tanner, $16
Proceeds of sale of hogs in Oct. 1842, $1,211.65
Proceeds of sale of cattle in Sept. 1842, $2,704.76
Sale of negro girl Susan $400
Sale of one mule $55
Amt. Rec'd on land sold to Fryar $800

* A list of accounts due on the mercantile books of the late firm of G & S Williams.

1839

Allen Parker, $11.07
Delilah Vinsant UAB $3.64
Thomas Bryan, $8.34 
John Boydston, $5.72
William Compton $4.12
William Upshaw $0.87
Jack Haley, $80.04
Samuel Sharp $2.37
Jesse Hibbs $16.66
Pleasant Creasey $35.37
Robert L. Johnson $16.66
James Crawford  $4.94
L.M. Stokes $1.25
Peter Hilton  $3.00
Bartley Lawson $3.00
Isaac Lackings $2.00
Allen Campbell $6.35
John C. Haley, $5.52
Edward Smith $5.25
William Walling $5.75
William Slape $3.62
Thomas Vinsant, $5.25
John R. Hall $8.75
William Brown $21.81
M.G. Sparks, $5.25
Gross Scruggs, $86.73
John Lovelady $11.10
Rich Lee  $1.50
E. Hixon $0.25
Green Carnes  $0.88
William Hixon $3.00
Geo. B. Gwathney$46.49
Thomas Johnson $2.09 
R. Shelton $6
Nancy Gaut  75 cents 
William Kinkead $12.6
Samuel Nave $1.25
Robt. Swinney $1.60
George Gann  $1.12
Reuben Brown $27
Thompson Gardenhire $4.25          
William Keith $1.00                              
James Stinnett $42.44                        
Allen Haney $3.12                              
Solomon Phipps $2.87                       
Timothy Shadwick $3.87                   
John Daugherty $5.38                               
David Reece  $2.25                           
C. Watson $7.12                                   
James. M. Thompson  $2.00             
Joseph G. Smith $65.09                           
S.B. Tyner  $2.75                              
Charles Masey $1.50                       
William Kinkead $5.38                     
John J. Harrison $3.00

1840

Charles Haines $2.25
George Sivley $9.44
James Warner $5.52
John Keeney $3
James E. Burrows $1
William Hixon $1.81
Jesse Webb $12
James McIlroy $12.83
A. Daugherty $39.36
William B. Upshaw $2.57
Alfred Haines $2.50
James C. Healin $1.25
Isom Sharp $2.25
M. Nettles $1
Lawrence Sivley $3.63
Solomon Aaron $3.50
Nimrod Jackson $3
Elisha Parker $33 
Rezin Rawlings $3.78
William Logan $2
John Crutchfield $58.26
B.K. Hudgins $75.26
John Neiro $8.42
Joseph G. Smith $201.83
Samuel Ramsey $3.25
Peter Sivley, Sr. $43.83
James M. Smith $9.11
Henry Davidson $40
S.E. Black $3.25
William Blake $216.99
James Lee $1
Steam Boat Holston $30
William Walling $3.12
Joseph Walling $2.12
John B. Beavert $4.25
J.R. Peck $3.68
James Williford 63 cents
Burrell Smith $2
James Sinerd $6.76
Geo. Levi $0.20
George Frazier $3
John Wilson $7.30
Mathew Frazier $1.50
Mr. Frazier $1.25
William Christian $7.75
Mr. Morris $2.50
William Peterson 50 cents
Ephraim Hixon $1
William R. Parker $1.50
William McDaniel $2.13
Thompson 56 cents
George Pines 75 cents
A.D. Maroney $20.50
G.W. Ketchum $10.25
Willis Cooper $2.50
D.D. McClune $17.20
A.S. Wilkins $1.18
William Cornett, unsettled & bad $4  
John Wood $30
McKamey, unsettled & bad $8.88
Campbell Walling $19.75
McKinney Lovelady $8
Allen Parker $5.40
Joseph Johnson, $3.72                       
Mrs. Jones $1.12                                 
Miles A. Simmons $3.28                     
Jack Haley $10.56                             
Peter Hilton $5.96                                
James L. Bryant $2.35                        
C.W. Smith $1                                 
Ezekiel Baucom $1.10                       
Myers $3.87                         
John Tyner, $2.31                                           
Mrs. Mincher $1.13   
Shipley & Roddy $20.56
James Roddy $11.96                                    
Robt. Brashears $1.62                       
Rebecca Vandegriff $2.25                
David Phipps $1.44                             
Ulisley Miles $2.75                              
James Roark $1.35                                              
George Fielding 50 cents                       
Edley Rogers $1.35                              
G.W. Snodgrass.50 cents                          
A.H. Johnson $2.63       

1841

Franklin & Hamilton Adams $7.50
Joseph G. Smith $33.45
David Walker $912.
Peter Sivley Sr. $14.44
William S. Miller $5
James Conner $5.55
Emery Hughs $1.68
William Sivley 33 cents
Medcalf $4
Robt. Swinney $2.25
Allen White $14.25
Adam Simmons $2.13
T.L. Hudgins $2.25
William A. Moon 50 cents
John Tyner $3.79
Samuel Thatcher $29.67
George Sivley $1
Smith, Shields & Co. $3
Peter Helton $9.62
Anna Keeney $46
John Hix 25 cents
John Wilson, $1.50
Charles T. Halsey $5
Levi Kash $5
A.G. Watkins 94 cents
E.J. Carter $2.25
William Clift $19.93
Joseph Hall $1
Daniel F. Cocke $12
Mrs. Crutchfield $1.75
Mr. Thursby $1.30
W.T.H. McEwen $1.50
Sterling Condrey, $4
A. Dobbins $1.25
Laban Condrey, $0.62
Abraham Myers $9.95
Jas. Crawford $5.40
G.B.Gwathney $3
Noah Dail $12.37
James Haley $7.25
Henry Long $52.75
John M. Bruce $3
Henry Buntin $7.01
Arch J. Martin $6
William Hixon $7
Jesse Lee 50 cents
James Warner $3.70
William Christian $8                   
William Roberts 30 cents
Rhea Ross & Co. $1,200
Robert Smith $2.50                         
McCallie & Hooke unsettled balance for store hours $2,200
Peggy N. Pickett $2                                                                                 
John Haley $36.68                                         
John Hilliard  $3.15                                        
Lawrence Sivley $1
Dickinson  $1.24
Miles Broom $2.94

The following is a list of the present outstanding liabilities of G&S Williams so far as they can be ascertained.

To Jesse Williams note and interest about $2,000
John Haley note and interest about $600
Branch Bank at Athens $445
Green H. Pryor note and interest $1,325
Elias Wilbourn $150
Levi Isbill $12
Queens $30
M.D. Bearden $112
Russell Peck $100
Richard Henderson attorney $182
Rhea, Ross & Co. $1,000
Caleb E. Pleasant & Co. $140
Wm. King Heiskell or King & Co. $91
J.S. Edwards $175
John Vail notes and interest $1,520
John Bennett $130
Thomas Crutchfield $1,400
William Clark's assignee $40
James Eaton's estate judgment $120
Benjamin B. Cannon $35
B.F. Bridgman $34
Ch. J. Hooper $50
James Pankey $24
James Graham $73
John Malone judgment $20
McCallie & Hooke $1,200

M.B. Parham & Co., A.H. Montgomery, R.M. Rawlings, Gideon Lovelady, Reynolds Ramsey, Elisha Lee, M. Cunningham, William Davis, George D. Foster, David Tittle, tax collector M. Rogers, Catherine Vann, Briggs, A.B. Lacy, Jesse Williams note unpaid, sundry Baltimore creditors 1840 and 1841 $3,943.31, R.R. Gest, G.W. Evans, Post Office Chattanooga, John Vail note due 1839, Rhea, Ross & Co. note due 1840, some contingent liabilities with land partners for lots, Thomas Crutchfield subject to settlement, land never yet settled, William Clark small note, Thomas Crutchfield note due 1839, T. Nixon Van Dyke attorney fees 1843.  

* * *

Money paid by Samuel Williams on claims against G&S Williams since March 12,1844

Jesse Williams $1,951.77

John Haley $36

Edley Beavert $11

B.B. Cannon $57.68

A.B. Beason $115.72

A.S. Gammon $257

M.D. Bearden $36

Jesse Walker $18

T.N. Van Dyke $29.88

Henry Long $20.25

David Tittle $40.21

Ch. J. Hooper

Simpson Albright $5.90

Levi Isbill $11.20

William Archer $8.43

C. Armstrong $80

Elias Willborn $275

Dr. WJJ Morrow $13.50

J.C. Francis sheriff on Eaton judgment $143.14

Green H. Pryor $1,303.30

R.H. Henderson attorney for Kelly on Davis debt $147.50

John Leckie $40.81

John Haley $22

Starling Callahan $27

J.M. Anderson on note for bacon $27.80

B.L. Bennett $196.36

B.F. Bridgman $38.88

P.J.R. Edwards $4.12

William Sublett $3

Sloan & Owen $83

A.D. Taylor $28.75

Bank calls and interest $171

J.C. Mullady attorney for Thomas Elms & Co. $86.30

Dr. Milo Smith $5.50

B.B. Cannon receipt Roberts use of Graham $83

Whiteside and Brabson attorneys C.E. Pleasant & Company $143

J F Bradford attorney receipt Peck debt $195.44

Henry Long $50

Spencer Jarnigan $60

 

* * *

Collections by Samuel Williams

 

Drove of cattle sold in Virginia September 1842 $2,150

Sale of brick house to McCallie & Hooke $3,200

Negro girl Susan sold to Cross $400

Gray mare sold 1844 $100

Horse sold to T.N. VanDyke $70

76 hogs sold to Williams & Divine 1843 $197.60

73 cattle sold to Williams & Divine 1843 $571

309 hogs sold at Augusta October 1842 $863.83

Guinn and Hanna note balance $105

From William Blancit 1843 $10.50

John Boydston $5.22

Elizabeth Brown June 1844 $259.60

Leroy Cummings $3.37

Sol Easter 1843 $20

William Fryar 1842 $3.45

John K. Farmer $15

William Gaut 1846 $25

McKinney Lovelady 1843 $7.62

Samuel M. Levi 1847 $345

Joseph Murphy $6

Stephen Perkins $10.40

A.S. Rogers $1.50

West Shelley four notes 1845 $45.07

Lampkin Sherrell two notes 1843 $21.99

Lewis Tyner 78 cents

William B. Taylor $10

Green Woodlee June 1844 $36

James Varnell $5

John C. Haley $5.52

George Sivley $6.50

John Keeney $3

Isham Sharp $2.25

Lawrence Sivley $1

George Levi 20 cents

Miles A. Simmons $3.28

Shipley & Roddy $20.56

James Roddy $11.96

James Williford 65 cents

F&H Adams $7.50

Peter Sivley $5

James Conner $5.55

W.A. Moore 50 cents

A&H Johnson $2.63

Robert Smith $2.50

Ann Keeney $46

Laban Condray 62 cents

Henry Long $52.75

Josiah Lusk $32

Jonathan Fielding $1.97

Jacob Hartman $3

J.E. Taylor $69.27

J. Ward $5

S. Farris $5

W.K. Hargroves $6

J. Williams $6.88

E. Bevans $5.40

R.C. McRee $38.75

B. Smith $25

William Roberts $22.38

Allen White on six notes $315.68

Floyd Tanner $16

Armstead Redman $10

Alfred Street $7

Profits on drove of hogs 1844 $190.20

J.H. Collins March 1, 1844 48 cents

Campbell Walling $8.87

William Varnell March 1, 1844 $21.05

James Williford two notes March 1, 1844 $7.69

James Wardlaw $12.50

Asahel Rawlings $2

Coffee and cash paid R.M. Rawlings $173.23

Williams & Whiteside account with Rawlings $46.26

One mule $55

Allen Parker $4.50

Jesse Hibbs $2.50

J.C. Wayland's statement received June 29, 1850 $486.84

Elizabeth Brown $208.35

S. Jarnagin for Colville house rent $60

A.C. McCamy for house rent $12

 

* * *

 

A. Hillian note due December 25, 1842 $53.25
Thomas Clark note due October 1, 1842 $26
William Davis note July 7, 1842 $114.10
Miller F. Rice note March 1, 1863 $18.92
Levi Isbell note Dec. 25, 1862 $22.00
J. S. Martin, Judgts. July 22, 1862 $542.64
John Vail note Dec. 8, 1860 $115.16
J. M. Anderson balance Jan. 16, 1841 $102.60
Joseph Rogers note Dec. 25, 1842 $19.57
Levi Trewhitt note March 26, 1842 $31.62
M. Davis note Dec. 25, 1842 $67.83
H.G.McFarland note May 25, 1842 $64.78
David Hixon note Dec. 25, 1842 $21.28
B.B. Cannon blk rect for costs Sept. 1, 1845 $59.68
John Hulsey note April 17, 1840 $45.36
Elias Welborn note Dec. 25, 1842 $432.33
J.S. Edwards note Aug. 27, 1842 $281.15
W. Isbell note Dec. 25, 1842 $6.50
Jeremiah Fryar note Dec. 25, 1842 $165.00
John Haley note July 8, 1839 $697.50
Berry Brown note Dec. 25, 1842 $76.78
Whiteside & Brabson Nov. 15, 1841 $6.26
R.A Ramsey note July 2, 1842 $79.70
Richard Haney not Dec. 25, 1839 $27.00 (paid April 25, 1847)
Hasten Poe note July 29, 1842 $4.37
Jesse Williams note Dec. 29, 1840 $75.80
S. Callahan note Dec. 25, 1842 $25.56
Joseph Vandergriff note Dec. 25, 1842 $37.43
T.N. VanDyke note July 28, 1842 $29.88
John A. Rowell note Aug. 2, 1841 $39.87
Samuel Hamill note May 28, 1842 $4.37
John P. Long note June 1, 1842 $13.25
John W. Leckie note June 15, 1843 $45.08
Slone & Owen note Dec. 25, 1842 $78.62
Meredith Coffee note Dec. 25, 1842 $7.70
Joseph Vandergriff note Dec 25, 1842 $56.50
Isham Perkins March 10, 1845 $10.94
Bryant Underwood note  bal paid Aug. 13, 1842 $23.30
Josiah Lusk note Nov. 21, 1838 $73.90
Rector Preston  note Jan. 26, 1842 $27.10
Rector Preston note Jan. 25, 1842 $74.62
Josiah Lusk note June 24, 1842 $91.36
Jeremiah Fryar note Dec. 25, 1842 $19.58
W. C. Murdock note June 10, 1842 $25.70
B. L. Bennett acct. closed Jan. 19, 1843 by S. Williams note $183.33
William Clark note Dec. 25, 1842 $30.23
Samuel S. Hatcher note July 20, 1842 $50.57
Nancy Yearout note Aug. 16, 1840 $9.37
Daniel J. Rawlings not April 6, 1842 $10.00
A.B. Beason D. Sheriff recpt for costs Timmanus vs. Williams, paid Feb. 1, 1847 $36.00
J. C. Francis Sheriff, costs Timmanus vs. Williams, Feb. 1, 1847 $11.40
Wm. Smith adm judgt paid Nov. 25, 1842 $21.00
John Sappington judgt paid Nov. 5, 1846 $22.00
Lewis Tyner, witness (?) paid Sept. 20, 1845 $16.10
R. Henderson, also for J. Kelly, last pmt Sept. 4, 1845 $147.50
Wm. J. Rogers, Clk, rect dated Nov 3, 1845 $3.00
John Sappington judgt. S. Guthries acct dated Aug. 5, 1843 $130.00
B.B. Cannon Clk. Rect. Dated Feb. 1, 1846 $6.25
Elizabeth Brown judgt, J.W. Hunter's acct. dated March 3, 1843 $23.20
Charles J. Hooper, account closed by S.W.'s note May 22, 1843 $25.39
Simpson Albright note Dec. 1841 $5.44
Wm. King & Co. rect dated Jan. 20, 1843 $90.00
A.B. Beason D. Sheriff. Rect. For costs Aug. 19 1847 $147.97
Edley Beavert Clk. Rect. For costs May 22, 1843 $11.00
Samuel Hamill Esq. Fees, rect. March 16, 1846 $1.75
J.C. Francis Sheriff (Eaton debt) rect. July 12 & 23, 1844 $143.14
Roberts for Graham's use judgt rect Feb. 8, 1845 $83.00
Gideon Lovelady rect dated March 11, 1843 $14.00
M.D. Bearden note April 7, 1842 $108.30
William Killian account $7.50
Williams Davis rect dated Nov. 21, 1842 $3.00
F. A. Parham's recpts dated Jan 8 and Feb. 1, 1847 $28.62
Rogers & Collins accts dates Aug. 12, 1842 $1.46
J.M. Anderson rect dated Jan. 9, 1843 $20.00
Henry Cornett rect dated Jan. 11, 1843 $1.15
Henry Long note July 24, 1839 $58.69
James Eaton's adm acct paid March 1863 $22.63
John H. Godsey acct paid Dec. 20, 1845 $34.09
A. Sivley acct paid Feb. 3, 1846 $7.00
R.R. Gist acct paid June 30, 1847 $39.23
James Sublett acct paid March 21, 1843 $3.50
John P. Long judgt paid Oct. 1, 1842 $5.45
James Goodman acct. (no other info ??)
Clinton Armstrong acct pad Jan. 26, 1845 $30.00
Robert C. McRee acct paid Aug. 2, 1846 $135.00
W. Morrow acct paid Sept. 3, 1845 $7.00
Henry Long acct paid June 3, 1844 $20.25
S.S. Thatcher acct paid Sept. 28, 1842 $51.50
Catharine Van acct paid Dec. 18, 1842 $57.50
John Boydston acct $5.75
Elisha Lee acct
William Clift acct paid Feb. 9, 1843 $70.00
Geo. D. Foster acct paid Feb. 27, 1847 $25.00
Wiley Webb acct paid March 4, 1844 $39.00
J. & S. Martin acct paid Jan 10, 1843 $8.88
T. N. VanDyke acct March 1843 $90.00
Martin Reese note Oct. 15, 1841 paid Jan. 9, 1843 $63.06
William Runyan acct. $5.00
Mark Lawson acct. $1.00
Dr. Milo Smith acct paid Sept. 6, 1845 $11.00
T.P.Kelly note April 2, 1841 $50.00
Spencer Jarnagin afc paid Aug 22, 1842 $60.00
D.D. McClune paid July 5, 1843 $30.65
James McSpadden note Oct. 9, 1841 $4.25
J&W Sanders note Jan. 19, 1841, paid Sept 15, 1844 $38.30
Mrs. Vail note May 14, 1841 $1.00
James A. Whiteside acct paid May 17, 1850 $28.10
Rawlings & Divine note Jan. 17, 1842 $30.00
G.W. Evans note Oct. 16, 1841 $16.12
Rawlings & Divine not June 17, 1842 $57.50
R.M. Rawlings afc $45.02
Samuel Hamill note April 16 1842 $47.89
R.M. Rawlings note May 10, 1842 $46.65
J&S Martin judgt May 8, 1843, paid Jan. 29, 1844 $53.35
Green H. Pryor judgt (paid various dates and amounts) $1303.30
A. Kennedy for taxes 1842 $3.00
William Hughs afc paid Feb. 24, 1843 (no amount)
Samuel McCallie note May 2, 1842 $6.65
Joseph Lovelady note March 6, 1842 $28.28
James R. Peck judgt Sept. 1844, paid 1845 $195.44
Caleb E. Pleasants & Co. judgt May 8, 1843, paid Dec. 20, 1845 $160.37
Arch. Brown paid Sept. 12, 1842 $18.50
Jesse Walker judgt. Paid Sept. 6, 1844 $13.00
Missouri Clack not Aug. 4, 1842 $10.32
Russell Peck due March 11, 1840 $8.75
Benj. Ford note May 10, 1839 $2.33
William Clift afc $23.17
R.M. Rawlings note May 10, 1842 $15.37
R.L. Taylor note Nov. 25, 1842 $158.40
R.M. Aycock note Oct. 11, 1842 $7.66
James Williford afc paid Nov. 2, 1845 $3.63
John Vail note May 15, 1841 $39.50
Silas Williams note June 16, 1842 $4.18
B.K. Mynatt afc paid May 22, 1848 $1.33
C. Milliken note May 29, 1842 $2.10
David Little afc closed by S.W's note March 20, 1844 $39.00
James Tankesly note July 27, 1844 $26.50
Blacksmith account $1.50
M.B. Parkham afc paid Nov. 18, 1862 $1.75
Jonathan Cox, judgt paid June 22, 1844 $20.08
Ignatius Hall note March 22, 1842 $11.37
A. Clark  $3.25
William Clark closed by S.W.'s note March 11, 1863, $18.67
William clark note Feb. 13, 1842 $7.50
Ale. McCamy note Dec. 25, 1842 $12.50
Ale. McCamy note Oct. 1841 $7.00
Ale. McCamy paid (no date) $6.00
Wm. Carmichael note Dec. 2, 1840 $343.12
Wm. Archer paid Jan. 16, 1845 $8.43
R. Patterson apart  note March 20, 1842 $86.30
John Haley paid Aug. 15, 1844 $33.18
Jesse Williams, judgt July 30, 1847  $2,690.35
P.J.R. Edwards note Dec. 1, 1843 $4.12
Br. Bank of State of Athens, Oct. 4, 1842 $847.00
McCallie & Hooke $718.33
Whiteside & Brabson acct paid Oct 20, 1847 $100.00
Whiteside & Brabson acct paid May 10, 1849 $50.00
Wesley Conner paid Sept. 1, 1842 $13.00
Taxes paid in 1842 $12.50
Bob note $16.00
Burrell Smith note paid winter 1842-3 $30.00
William Hale paid 1843 $30.00
John Kellum paid in fall of 1842 $15.00
R. Henderson, atto's fee $5.00
E. Hixon note Dec. 25, 1842  $80.16
J. C. Tipton paid March 1845 $4.12
William Hixon afc paid June 14 1850 $28.35
John A. Minnis rect June 19, 1850 $75.00
Gross Scruggs paid a horse in the fall of 1844 $65.00
Costs in the case, Williams vs. Scruggs, bal $25.25
Smith, Edwards & Co. $27.00
A.B.  Beason, Const rect Oct. 18, 1845 $4.00
R. Henderson rect Oct. 29, 1843 $10.00
A.G.W. Puckett Clk rect July 25, 1850 $8.52
John A. Minnis attorney fees, 3 cases $55.00
Jeremiah Fryer note Nov. 25, 1842 $150.00
Jeremiah Sloan for painting $35.00
George D. Foster for sleepers $15.00
J.W. Hunter Deputy sheriff $10.00
C. C. Gwinn witness $45.00
C.H. Brown Sept. 19, 1842 $534.72
W. & S. Wyman  Sept. 19, 1842 764.63
Watkins, Dungan & Rust  Sept. 19, 1842 $313.36
C. Fischer & Co.  Sept. 19, 1842 $35.00
Norris & Beatty Sept. 19, 1842 $82.27
Canfield & Brothers Sept. 19, 1842 $82.27
Jacob Rogers & Son Sept. 19, 1842 $594.33
Noah Walker Sept. 19, 1842 $56.00
Thomas Oxley, 3 notes, Kemp & Buckey claim $598.00
T. Jones & Co. Sept. 19, 1842  for McCallie & Hooke $575.24
Chandler & Rogers $193.04

Suspenders Were 25 Cents, Fur Hats $3 At Samuel Williams Store At Ross's Landing

The store that Samuel Williams set up with his brother George well before the Indian Removal was at Ross's Landing about the site of the current park on the Tennessee River.

It was the same prime location where John and Lewis Ross once operated a trading post.

During about eight years in the store business, Samuel and George Williams had varied partners as well as clerks.

Col. James A. Whiteside had varied business interests with the Williams brothers, including the store. He noted, "I had a mercantile partnership with them commencing in the year 1838 or the first part of 1839 and terminating in 1841."

Notations in the Williams lawsuit that was unearthed last year give a glimpse of what was sold at G&S Williams and how much the items cost.

This was from a bill of merchandise sold to Allen White by order of and on account of G&S Williams:

1842

June 11 5 pounds coffee $1, coffee pot 75 cents
Sifter 50 cents, wheat stone 25 cents
bucket 75 cents, 4 tin cups 50 cents
10 pounds salt $1.80
set of plates 50 cents, set of teas 50 cents, wash pan 50 cents
tin wash pan 25 cents, 2 plugs of tobacco 25 cents, 5 pounds of coffee $1.50
palm leaf hat 25 cents, 2 pair shoes $3, 2 quiro paper 13 cents
plug tobacco 50 cents, 6 1/2 pounds manilla rope $1.62, 5 pounds nails 63 cents
6 yards Kentucky jeans $6, six yards domestic 75 cents
1 nail keg 25 cents, order to hands 94 cents
pair of suspenders 25 cents, a penknife 63 cents, a yard of drilling 25 cents
a fur hat $3, 1 pair shoes $1.75, penknife 12 cents
8 yards of calico $2
5 bunches tape 25 cents
1 pair cot cards $1, 2 gallons whiskey $1
merchandise to F.M. Caps $3.37, to Stephens $4.25
10 pounds coffee $2

The account with William Clark included a pair of shoes for Samuel $1.75. yard of muslin delane. salt for George W., four pounds of rice, 1 1/2 pounds Ep. salt, nails for boy, side upper leather for G.W., salt, nails for Thatcher.

M.B. Parham, another merchant, listed 2 pounds raisins .75, 6 cups raisins .50, and a half ounce of calomel.

Allen White promised to pay A.C. McCamy $12.50 July 15, 1842 and pay A.C. McCamy $8.65 for bacon weighed out of my lot of bacon at A.C. McCamy's. Sept. 13, 1842. Alvin Hornsty received the above order. Account with A.C. McCamy 2 pounds nails, 1 pound nails, half pound tobacco, scrip lot of B. Chandler, 8 pounds of cotton for boy Paddy, 6 pounds coffee, 8 pounds sugar, 10 pounds cotton, salt paid Mr. Weaver for S. Williams, 1 quart whisky, raw cotton for girl, salt got for Hughs, 25 pounds salt, gallon whisky .75, barrel of salt 308 pounds at 2 cents per pound, 602 pounds iron at 4 cents per pound, tire for a wagon for Little, cash borrowed to pay Boatman 1842.

Other notations included: Pay Burt Kellum $15.30 and charge it to Samuel Williams. Let West Shelley have $2 on your store. Also, Frank Capps $3, A. Looney 50 cents, Shipley Dearing. September 1842, Allen White let George Evins have $6 in your store and let Thomas Discon have $2 and charge it to Samuel Williams. Oct. 15, 2842, let Henry Ison have $4.50 in goods and charge it to Samuel Williams. Let William Mason have $3.50. John Norman $2 in goods. Send Cornelius Milliken the following articles and charge it to Samuel Williams - four barrels of meat, 10 pounds of coffee, one large tin bucket, and six tin cups. Allen White said let Mr. McGehee have $1.50. Let Mr. Riddle have $2. Pay William Baker $4.50. Mr. Baucum have $4. Mr. Cook have $2. Frank Capp have $3. John R. Bell have 70 cents. John Kinny $7. John Tyner $6. Mr. Boren have $11. William Jones $10. John Kiling $5. William Lawrence $2. Bart Celing $3. John Keling $4. One cake of shaving soap. Let William Jones have $6 or $7. D.A. Wilds $4. Gross Scruggs $2.70. R.W. Gibson $5.   

July 26, 1842, Samuel Williams promises to pay Berry Brown $74.50, $26 in the store including one barrel of salt, all to be governed by cash prices of Chattanooga, current bank notes, all to be delivered at G.W. Williams, where he now lives.

There was a note to send Cornelius Milliken the following articles and charge it to Samuel Williams - four barrels of meat, 10 pounds of coffee, one large tin bucket, and six tin cups. 

The Williams workers were often paid in "store trade" at their own store or another Chattanooga store with which they had an account.

Obediah Patty said he worked for Williams and was paid in articles at the store of Smith, Edwards & Co. He said drawn orders were given for goods at the store. He saw some of the hands got paid there and some at Capt. John P. Long's store. Samuel Williams said when he came back from the east they would have goods of their own. This was the fall of 1842.

Brittain Riddle said he made a pair of timber wheels, and the work was worth $47. He was paid first out of the store of Smith, Edwards & Co. and Williams paid him the balance. He said Allen White "was not good for his debts." John Godsey was to have some iron to make a stirrup for the saw mill and charge it to Samuel Williams.This was Oct. 31, 1842.

Promise to pay Joseph Vandergriff $37 which may be discharged by two barrels of salt and dry goods delivered to the house where George Williams now lives. Pay William C. Murdock. June 10, 1842. Anderson & Bennett. 333 pounds bacon hams at 12 cents per pound scrip. $39.96. 1,234 pounds bacon at 10 cents per pound scrip. $133.40. Settlement with Robert Griffith. $7.84. Total $181.20. 10 and 23 pounds of lard total 33 at 10 cents. $3.30. Loaned Samuel W. Monroe. R.R. $1. Total $185.50. 27 pounds salt. 81 cents. 73 pounds of bones. $1.10. 75 pounds of heads. 75 cents. 23 pounds salt. 69 cents. 45 pounds of salt. $1.35. 115 pounds of pork $4.60. G&S. Williams to Clinton Armstrong. May 1838. for one double barrel and half barrel lard - about 600 pounds. $48. Account with Henry Long. Feb. 6, 1842. 250 bushels of corn at 25 cents per bushel. Total $62.50. Received full payment of Samuel Williams. June 1844. Order to Thomas Kelly for one --- of salt. June 3, 1844. 

Order to Thomas Kelly for one --- of salt. June 3, 1844. Account with Elisha Lee for brandy. Before T.W. Spice acting justice of the peace. Oct. 17, 1842. Dec. 21, 1842. G&S Williams account with J&S Martin. Bar of lead.

Account to Brttain Riddle. Pair of chains $1.50. Pair of hems $1. Repairing wagon wheel $1.50. One carryall bed $8.

Williams Family Once Owned Future North Chattanooga; Brothers Jesse And Silas Had Different Temperaments

The Williams family once owned the future North Chattanooga.

There were various tracts left to his sons by George Washington Williams Sr., who died in 1832.

George Jr. and Samuel jointly held the home place that was on the river opposite Williams Island.

One of the younger sons, Silas, lived on the North Chattanooga farm directly across from Chattanooga with his young bride. This large tract was later to fall into the hands of Major John Cowart, a native of Virginia who was a farmer, merchant and ferry operator in the Ross's Landing days. 

The young son, Jesse, did not stay long at the family's adopted home by the river. He went west at the time of the Indian Removal as did other family members. Then Silas died of an illness in the fall of 1843. 

Nancy, the widow of Silas, recalled in a deposition that she had "been acquainted with the Williams all my life." She was from their former home in Paint Rock in Jackson County, Alabama.

Nancy, who by the time of the deposition had married a Gwinn, said after the death of George Williams Sr. "a settlement was made in Alabama in 1841. Silas, my husband, was to have the cattle, horses and hogs. Samuel and George was to have the Negro woman, the goods there were on hand, and the firm's debt. I have heard that they paid to Silas his interest in the home place by a tract of land of 80 acres now belonging to Major Cowart by Silas paying back his $150. The other heirs, John Baker and Henry Edwards, were paid $150 each. I cannot tell what was paid to Jesse.

"We moved up from Alabama after George W. Sr. died. We stayed a short time at George Williams. When we went to housekeeping we lived opposite to Chattanooga, the place now owned by Major Cowart. George Jr. moved to Lookout Valley and sold goods where Esq. Parker now lives."   

A Williams lawsuit that was uncovered last year shows the differing temperaments of Silas and Jesse.

Col. James A. Whiteside observed, "Silas Williams was a very close hard trader and dealt with his brothers as with strangers."

He said after the death of George Sr. "Samuel tried to settle with Silas, but could not, but George had arranged it and could manage him. I told Samuel and he acquiesced to George's wish, and in a day or two he went and made the settlement (about Silas' share of the home place). He laughed about it and recapitulated the difficulty he and Samuel had with Silas."  

Elijah Thurman, a close neighbor, said, "Silas Williams was complaining that George and Samuel were not going to pay him what was right for the home place. George said they had to pay him more than what was right or go to law with him. This was after the settlement had taken place. George said it was all settled up satisfactorily now. George said there would be no difficulty with Jesse about it - that Jesse was disposed to do what was right about it."

John Johnson recalled, "I was present when they settled their partnership business - G.W., Samuel and Silas. Silas kept all his land, his horses and his stock cattle. G.W. and Samuel got his drove cattle and his store books and notes and paid his county debts. I became acquainted with them in 1838 or 1839. I think Mr. Foster and Mr. Beason were at the settlement. Thomas Oxley may have been also."

 

Major John Cowart, in an interview on Jan. 16, 1852, said, "I lived about three fourths of a mile from their storehouse in Chattanooga and about four miles from G.W. Williams' house. A part of the time they both lived together. I still live at the same place. I have been a merchant 10 or more years. I have wound up, or helped to wind up, two businesses - that of Charles Sullivan and Williams, Black & Co. Samuel Williams and John L. Divine went into merchandising and stock trading. They were involved in cattle drives."

Major Cowart had married Cynthia Pack, who came from a distinguished lineage of Cherokee and Scot, in Alabama. When they began to occupy the North Chattanooga farm, there were only three other houses in that whole section. Cynthia Pack Cowart joined in the founding of the first Methodist church organized in Chattanooga. Major Cowart operated a farm that was considered "a model for its day."

The Cowarts resided in a house called "The Cedars" that was on the later Frazier Avenue not far from where the Walnut Street Bridge later had its north approach. The mansion had spacious halls and four large chimneys. The Frazier family resided at The Cedars until it burned on the afternoon of March 13, 1923.

Jesse Williams married Elizabeth Taylor. He lived in the Indian Country across the Mississippi until his death in 1870.

Cowart Street in South Chattanooga is named for John Cowart. Frazier Avenue is named for the Fraziers who later lived at "The Cedars."

Cattle Drives Once Embarked From Chattanooga To Baltimore, Augusta, Other Distant Points

Samuel Williams and his family found it to be a very profitable venture to assemble stocks of cattle and hogs and drive them from Ross's Landing to distant markets. But the long treks, in uncertain weather and over rutted trails and across swollen creeks and rivers, could be a dangerous venture.

It must have been a daunting task, given the condition or absence of passable roads and the number of streams and rivers that had to be crossed.

Two of the three brothers of Samuel Williams - George and Silas - became ill and died after embarking on strenuous cattle drives.

Col. James A. Whiteside recalled, "I had a partnership (with Samuel and George Williams) for two seasons in buying and driving beef cattle to the Virginia Market commencing in the year 1839 to about $23,000 or $24,000 and for the year 1840 less. This was under an agreement extending only to the cattle operation.

"At time of G.W. Williams' death he had a drove of stock cattle on the road to the Virginia market under charge of Silas Williams, who also took cattle of his own. 578 started. 14 were lost on the road. 284 G&S Williams and 248 Silas Williams. All sold for $4,095.46 in September 1842. G.W. Williams went several days with the drive, then returned home."

It is also written in the Williams lawsuit that was recently uncovered, "At the death of G.W. Williams, there was a drove of cattle going to Virginia (the Eastern Market) under the care of Silas. It is not true that Samuel Williams took the proceeds and he and his son-in-law, John Divine, traded on them. The cows were sold for $2,704."

G.W. Williams became immediately sick soon after the drive started. He returned to his home by the river and died there on Aug. 9, 1842, despite the ministrations of the local physicians.

Col. Whiteside said in October 1842 upon his return from the South he made contact with Samuel Williams some 30 miles from Chattanooga with a drove of hogs going to the southern market."

One calculation showed that G&S Williams had 284 head and Silas Williams had 248 head. There was a figure given for "lost cattle." The report says, "Of the proceeds of the sales of cattle, there is on hand - One brown mare at $45 and one sorrel horse at $50. After deducting expenses, the net proceeds of the cattle is $4,095.45. Of this, Samuel Williams is entitled to $$2,187.30. Add for expenses from Silas Williams $71.80. Total $2,258.10. Silas is entitled to $1,909.14. Deduct expense money $71.80. Total $1,837.34. Whole net proceeds of cattle $4,095.46. Of this, Samuel Williams had $3,952.74. Leaving in Silas' hands $142.70. Samuel Williams received $3,952.14. Samuel Williams entitled to $2,258.10. Amount due from Samuel to Silas $1,694.04. Deduct for freight on goods. Silas Williams sold of the 532 head of cattle 518 head for $4,569.73. 14 head were lost. Expenses until S.W. leaves Pt. of Rocks $444.70. Brown mare part proceeds at $75. Sorrel horse." 

There was a listing of the "Accounts and debts due the firm of Williams & Oxley. Three of four or perhaps a half dozen inferior shotguns sold by G&S Williams at auction. Silas Williams kept all the livestock, cattle, horses, mules and hogs. G&S Williams got a negro woman which they sold four or five days later to Anna Keeney on April 11, 1841. They got about 160 head of cattle in July 1842. Previous to this, they had received cattle and hogs to a considerable amount."

George D. Foster said, "George W. Williams had drove hogs before. Left on the farm at the time of his death were hogs, horses, cattle, Negroes, household furniture, bees, farming tools, one wagon and corn."

Abel Beason said Silas Williams drove some cattle to market. He herded them on Raccoon Mountain opposite Trenton, Dade County, Ga. Silas mainly purchased the cattle by debts due him.  

John Johnson said, "They took the cattle home for the winter and in the spring put them on the mountain and in the summer drove them to market."   

Archibald Brown, who "worked a good deal on the farm, minding stock, " said George Jr. "said he had no more interest in the estate than any of the other heirs. At the time Samuel Williams moved here I was living in Marion County. Before that I was living in Hamilton County. I don't think George had but two horses. He had a small lot of cattle and hogs. George did buy up hogs in Marion, Hamilton and Lookout Valley before Samuel came up. The partnership was formed in 1833. In 1832, about November, a drove of hogs was taken to Georgia. There were between 180 and 200 hogs." 

Jesse G. Blackwell said, "I was never employed or considered as a clerk for G&S Williams during the lifetime of George Williams, though I frequently transacted business for them. Soon after the death of George, Samuel employed me as a clerk and general agent for the purpose of winding up the business of G&S Williams, and from the first of December 1842 to the first of February 1843, the most of my time was employed in selling goods, which goods Samuel Williams was interested in. The hogs were sold to different men, all I think living at Harrisburg, except a few sales made to persons in Augusta, Ga. I recollect distinctly of selling hogs to Morgan Buchn, Thomas Stackel, Keeser Floyd, Thomas John McKissick, George Weigh and others. The hogs were sold for cash. Most of these were owned by G&S Williams before the death of George. Some of the hogs were bought by Samuel Williams after the death of George and but a few days before the drove was started. This purchase amounted to something like $140 for which Samuel Williams gave his note with Silas Williams security, which note passed through other hands and was finally paid by John L. Divine with the effects of Williams & Divine in the spring of 1843 and perhaps in the month of June. And the amount of the payment was charged to the concern of G&S Williams. And by my own instruction in consequence of my knowing that the hogs for which this note was given was sold as the hogs of G&S Williams. And the proceeds of the sale of those hogs used by Samuel as the funds of G&S Williams in discharging the debts of that concern. No part of this drove of hogs was owned by Williams & Divine. This I state partially from the declaration of Samuel, but mostly by my own knowledge. 

"They were taken to the Virginia market in 1843 by John L. Divine. The drove of cattle was purchased from divers persons. Some were bought from Samuel Farris. Joseph Johnson, Winfield Mann, Campbell Walling, John Tucker and divers other persons."

Cattle figured in a land purchase of nearly $900 from Charles Brown. One person said in a deposition, "Those debts were paid in the fall of 1843. The goods were purchased in September 1842. The debts were paid with cash notes, the proceeds of the proceeds of a drove of cattle belonging to Williams and Divine. The drove of cattle was sold in the Rail Road office. I am certain that Samuel Williams was at that time on the road to Augusta, Ga., with a drove of hogs. George went part of the way with Samuel and was on his way home, and I think he had some business with my father, who at that time had some business in his hands as an officer for G&S Williams against P.M. Tipton and perhaps some other persons, and at the same time was trying to collect money from John Rhone and Rhone & Smith." 

Samuel Williams in the fall of 1844 bought 200 head of hogs for $448.25, and he sold the hogs at Augusta, Ga., for $897. Cost of driving the hogs to market was $258.

One drove of cattle sold in Baltimore in September 1842. It was 284 head. Net proceeds amounted to $2,180.

There is a notation that R. Swinney was paid for a steer, T.A. Moore 3 steer, cow and calf to W. Lewis, note on C. Hall, execution on John Igou, cash paid Silas Williams, 10 bushels corn, Samuel Farris note sold to Silas Williams, cash received of D.R. Mitchell, attorney at law, cash received for cow hides furnished for hog drove, paid R. Smith for bill of goods, debt on Joseph Johnson.

Drove of hogs of 309 belonging to G&S Williams was bought with the effects of G&S Williams except for 40 head purchased by Samuel of R.L. Taylor for $142.29. All were driven to Augusta, Ga. and sold for $1,211.45. Net proceeds were $863.83. J.G. Blackwell, who went along with the hogs, kept an expense account "which has been lost."

Though it may have been profitable, the livestock business was not easy. Col. Whiteside notes, "Such stock of cattle and hogs as they kept required constant and laborious attention at all seasons. Samuel Williams has given such attention to a greater extent than any man I have ever known."

Jesse G. Blackwell said that In the winter of 1843-1844, Samuel Williams and John L. Divine bought a small drove of hogs that were purchased near the Kentucky line and drove them to Alabama. "At the time Samuel Williams had a tolerable good wagon and three mules that he sold in the South for about $290. The mules had been bought from Jack Taylor. I believe the wagon was bought from Jerry Fryar.

"I attended to much of the business of Williams and Divine, especially the mercantile part. Payments to hands for driving hogs to market in the fall of 1842. Calvin Dail, $12.75, Giles Adams, $10.37, Jack Johnson $6.25. Joshua Smalley $12 (for the drive and work at the home place 1842 and 1843. Amount paid to Ramsey and Kennedy."

John L. Divine recalled, "Cattle were bought and driven to Virginia. The coffee was purchased of Tolbert Jones & Company, Baltimore. Samuel Williams never went off with the cattle more than 12 or 14 miles. I went into business with Samuel Williams on the first day of January 1843. Our partnership closed about 1845. We sold goods and stock. We sold goods not more than one year - the balance of the time we traded in hogs and cattle. Our first stock of goods amount to $1,885. We sold it for at least $1,200 or $1,500 profit. We then drove near 300 head of cattle to Virginia in 1843, which we made $1,350 profit. While in Baltimore I bought another stock of goods, which we never opened. We sold those goods to Doctor Mitchell for about $450. We also drove nearly 500 head of hogs, which we made over $700. We drove another drove of cattle to Virginia in 1845. There were many other transaction of which we made considerable money. The profit was near $4,000. One drive the most of them was old and heifers. I did not want to put them in, but he said we must put everything in to raise money. I would think the cost of driving hogs to Augusta would be between $1.25 and $1.50 per head.

Daniel Sivley, said, "Samuel Williams has been engaged in the buying and selling of stock. He has been engaged more or less every year in the driving hogs or cattle."   

There was a notation: July 12, 1842. George Williams to James Sublett for driving cattle three days $3. Returning home .50. Total $3.50. Marshall County, Ala., James Sublett appeared before Justice F.M. Kirby that this account is just and true. Sublett received full payment on March 21, 1843, from Samuel Williams.

Matthew Cunningham said he saw a certain pale red steer in Georgia at time Samuel Williams was driving cattle to the East in the summer of 1842. He said, "The steer belonged to William Killian of my neighborhood."

George W. Williams paid John Boydston for wintering cattle, calf and one young steer.  Sworn before Elisha Parker, justice of the peace.   Cornelius Milliken, justice of the peace 1843. To Catherine Vann for six head of beef cattle at $8 each, $48. 1 head of beef cattle at $9.50. Dec. 18, 1842. J.G. Blackwell witness. 1841 and 1842.

Dade Georgia. Feb. 27, 1843. Mark Lawson came before John B. Perkins justice of the peace. Says George and Samuel Williams are indebted to him $1 for two days of driving cattle in 1841. 

July 21, 1844, I rec. your letter stated you send by Mr. Godsey $150 but there was not that amount I received $140.30 which will be credited he will tell you all about it Colonel Whiteside will explain to you about the judgment and execution and I will see you when you come over to see the cattle as you wrote you would come the cattle will be up about the 10th of August and I wish to sell, yours G.H. Pryor

Alexander Kelly said Silas Williams "was involved in selling and buying cattle. I recollect one drove of cattle to market by Silas Williams, but I do not recollect the year." 

Brainerd Mills Was One Of The Far-Flung Interests Of Samuel And George Williams

The Brainerd mills that were started by missionaries to the Cherokee Indians on South Chickmauga Creek were another of the far-flung interests of Samuel and George Williams in the early days of Chattanooga.

They acquired a portion of the mill property for $1,200 from John Vail, who was one of the few missionaries to remain behind when the Brainerd Mission closed after the Cherokees went on the Trail of Tears. After the Indian removal in 1838, Vail entered a claim for the mission property.  Thomas Crutchfield Sr., the brick contractor, also applied for "the Branard place.'' The issue went to a lawsuit, which was settled in 1842 with both holding the property jointly.

The mission - at the site of the current Eastgate Town Center - was once a thriving settlement that also included a schoolhouse, dorms and other outbuildings. President James Monroe made a surprise visit to the mission on horseback soon after the Vails arrived.

Vail was designated the farmer for the mission and he also ran the sawmill. The mission also had a small grist mill that was used for grinding corn. The water to propel "Missionary Mill'' was brought in a race from Spring Creek about a mile away.

The Williams lawsuit that was discovered last year gives many interesting details about the Brainerd Mills, which are more often referred to as the Chickamauga Mills.

One reference says, "The Chickamauga Mills dam is cut near the center of the line dividing two of his (Samuel Williams) properties lying on either side of the creek. On each bank there is a mill. One is on the Chattanooga side of the creek near the Rail Road. The same dam is common to both mills."

John Vail, when he was 59 and still living at Chattanooga, said, "I sold one-half of the Missionary Tract on South Chickamauga Creek to G.W. and Samuel Williams for $1,200. There has been some profit from the mills, but I do not know how much." 

Col. James A. Whiteside related, "The Chickamauga Mills had washed away before G.W. Williams died, but the stream passed around one end of it for some two years. It was believed that Henry Timmanus, who owned the land immediately above on the stream, was about to erect a mill as to prevent one on the Williams land below at the old mill. The Williamses were anxious to save their mill site and they began the erection of the mill in 1842 and were immediately enjoined by Timmanus from doing so. George Williams undertook the work and superintended the construction for a time. He took sick and died during the progress of the work, which was mostly carried forth by Samuel Williams. He incurred much expense in building and repairing the mills. He won his case with Timmanus in the Supreme Court. The title to the property was also in litigation with Gardenhire and Keeney in Chancery Court. This suit, which also was at great expense and trouble, was finally won."

Jesse G. Blackwell stated, "G.W. Williams told me in the early part of 1842 something about a contract he had with Allen White for the rebuilding of the mills on South Chickamauga Creek." 

B.M. Kellums remembered that Allen White began the repair of the Chickamauga Mills in 1842 before the death of G.W. Williams. He said, "I helped work on the mill. A considerable amount of work was done. The mill frame was put in. They were called Williams Mills. When the repairs were done, White took them under lease. I was hired by G.W. Williams and he sent me out there and paid me. Also working at the mills were West Shelley, John Kellums, William Evans, John H. Godsey and others. I continued to work at the mills for several months after his death until they were completed, and for several months afterward. White began paying. I made him take up my account at Smith, Edwards & Co."

John L. Divine confirmed that "The Chickamauga Mills were under the control of Allen White after the death of G.W. Williams." 

West Shelley, one of the mill workers, said, "Allen White came up to my house in June 1842 to see about boarding. He said he came to work on the mills. He said that G.W. and Samuel Williams were to pay for repair of the mills. White hired me to work at the mills. I worked to the amount of over $40, which Samuel Williams settled with me. White remained working at the mills for two or three years after the death of G.W. Williams. White died three or four years ago. A large part of the lumber for the mills was taken away by White for his own use. White gave orders in the name of G.W. and Samuel Williams to Chandler & Rogers and Smith, Edwards & Co.

"There were a good many hands who worked at the mill. Allen White had a yoke of oxen and a cart. White had the mills three or four years. He got behind and left. Gilbert W. Dearing said White hired him in the fall of 1842. Said he would pay him in Smith, Edwards & Co. store. There were mills on both sides of the creek. Dearing was to repair one mill for $150. White was to pay him in cattle and hogs and at the store. Dearing would not start the work until he saw Williams. He then did the work. He was paid several cows and store goods. There was a good many hands working on the dam. Samuel Williams was starting a trip to the south and he told his hands to do with as little goods as they could. White had run him in debt a great amount at Smith, Edwards & Co. where he owed them the last hard dime he had. He planned when he returned to have goods of his own to pay off the debt White incurred." 

Gilbert W. Dearing said, "Allen White told me he made a contract with G.W. Williams to repair the mills and dam and build a grist mill. I worked there making the running gears of the saw mill. What White did with the lumber I don't know. The hubs and irons of one set of wheels are at the Chickamauga Mills - the woodwork being worn out with the exception of the hubs. They are worth $15 to $18. There was another pair, but its woodwork was entirely worn out. I had the woodwork of the wheels made entirely new. I just used the irons."

James C. Connor remembered, "Samuel Williams rented the mills to Allen White. I think he rented a saw mill to John A. Carpenter one year for a third of the lumber he made. I rented all three of the mills from Allen White one year. For the grist mill, I paid about $100. I rented one of the saw mills to Carpenter. There are frequent overflows of the river in the spring with fences being carried off. There were not any very high freshets while I rented the mills from Williams - only in June 1840. There have been several high freshets since I rented from Mr. Gardenhire on the river below where I rented from Mr. Williams and they were considerably damaged. I suppose all bottoms were overflowed and damaged some."

John Norman said, "Allen White hired all the hands and Williams paid all. White paid us off and stopped work and said he would stop buying so many goods. Williams said when he came back he would have goods of his own to pay with when they went with the hogs. He had been working a good while. He worked at the mill.The mill was owned by Williams. White carried it on. Williams was very often there superintending the business."

Obediah Patty said he worked at the mills and was paid in articles at the store of Smith, Edwards & Co. He said drawn orders were given for goods at the store. He saw some of the hands got paid there and some at Long's store. Samuel Williams said when he came back from the east they would have goods of their own. This was the fall of 1842.

Samuel Cross said he and his brother worked at the Williams mills about $200 worth in 1842. He was paid some $40 or $50 in the store of Smith, Edwards. He got some $20 or $23 from the Williams and Divine store. George D. Foster said about the time that Samuel Williams was starting with his hogs in 1842 Alpheus Edwards, who was a clerk in the Smith, Edwards store, said he saw Samuel Williams in the streets of Chattanooga and asked him about orders from White to see if they were alright. Williams said he would pay $80 for fencing and, if more was needed, he would draw the orders himself. Edwards followed him down to the river and was talking about attaching the lumber.

Brittain Riddle said he made a pair of timber wheels, and the work was worth $47. He was paid first out of the store of Smith, Edwards & Co. and Samuel Williams paid him the balance. He said Allen White was not good for his debts. John Godsey was to have some iron to make a stirrup for the saw mill and charge it to Samuel Williams.This was Oct. 31, 1842.

Other notations relating to the mill workers included: Pay Burt Kellum $15.30 and charge it to Samuel Williams. Let West Shelley have $2 on your store. Also, Frank Capps $3, A. Looney 50 cents, Shipley Dearing. September 1842, Allen White let George Evins have $6 in your store and let Thomas Discon have $2 and charge it to Samuel Williams. Oct. 15, 2842, let Henry Isom have $4.50 in goods and charge it to Samuel Williams. Let William Mason have $3.50. John Norman $2 in goods. Allen White said let Mr. McGehe have $1.50. Let Mr. Riddle have $2. Pay William Baker $4.50. Mr. Baucum have $4. Mr. Cook have $2. Frank Capp have $3. John R. Bell have 70 cents. John Kinny $7. John Tyner $6. Mr. Boren have $11. William Jones $10. John Kiling $5. William Lawrence $2. Bart Celing $3. John Keling $4. One cake of shaving soap. Let William Jones have $6 or $7. D.A. Wilds $4. Gross Scruggs $2.70. R.W. Gibson $5.  

An account with S.S. Thatcher in 1842 was for 21 days superintending hands at Chickamauga Mills. $42 and $2 per day.

Account with S.S. Thatcher 1842. 21 days superintending hands at Chickamauga Mills. $42 and $2 per day. 3 days by William Crow. 

The Brainerd Mills were operated in the 1850s and 1860s by Philemon Bird, a "man of considerable weatlh'' who had 37 slaves. Bird was a Georgia native "of a prominent and wealthy family.'' In addition to the Brainerd property of 720 acres, he had a large plantation in south Alabama. He lived on a large farm in McLemore Cove by Lookout Mountain in Walker County, Ga. This place also had a mill.

At Brainerd, Bird directed that the small mission grist mill be replaced by a larger corn, wheat and saw mill. He did away with the old race from Spring Creek and built a dam on South Chickamauga Creek. The wooden two-story mill extended out into the creek.

The Bird's Mill property, after the death of Philemon Bird, went into a chancery sale, then in 1901 it was transferred for $14,000 to a group led by Hugh D. Huffaker and Willard Springfield. The sale included 725 acres with the mill, dam and buildings. The mill had been rebuilt after it was washed away in the flood of 1886.

In 1980, during construction of the Brainerd Levee, remains of Philemon Bird's old mill were found. His four-foot dam was discovered along with the remnants of three turbines, gears and hand tools. Archaeologist Jeff Brown said at the time that the large, primitive, wood and cast iron turbines were a link between the old traditional Appalachian mill operation and the modern turbine system. Portions of the old mill run from Spring Creek are still visible in the vicinity of the I-75/I-24 split near where Spring Creek enters West Chickamauga Creek. 

Williams Brothers Had Coal Interests In Marion County; Mining Community Came To Be Known As Shakerag

Samuel and George Williams had great aspirations in the business world, including promising coal lands in Marion County. After a sizable investment, they later concluded that the coal embankment was too thin to be a paying proposition.

The same site was later mined by the McNabb family and a settlement known as Shakerag grew up there. It had a hotel, commissary, coke ovens, miner homes and other buildings. There were 34 building foundations documented there in the 1980s. The name Shakerag came from the fact that some of its citizens would bum a ride on a passing river vessel by shaking a rag to get the pilot's attention.

David McNabb gave a deposition in an interesting long-running Williams lawsuit that was found last year. He said, "My understanding there is a tract of about 1,200 acres. It lies on the side and the top of the mountain opposite Kelly's Ferry and Savannah Island. Samuel Williams came down there and said we would have to be stopped from working at the coal banks - that there were minor heirs who had an interest and it was sort of a difficult case that a back slam might come against a fellow after a while. I rented the coal banks from Mr. Williams and gave him my obligation for a third of the coal that we took out. His third was to be left at the bank. I think he received $5 or $6 from Mr. Sterling for rent of the coal lands. Mr. Pearson bought 20 yards of the coal bank. He was to pay for some coal he had previously dug. Robert Jack, who lives on Sale Creek, said he had sold it to Williams. The coal had been discovered at the time of the sale. It went by the name Jack's Entry. Williams sold the land to me for $300. I was acquainted with Allen White. He lived in a house on the mountain. He had been ailing for some time and went there for his health. He died at the house. I lived at the north side of the Tennessee River in Marion County about two miles above Kelly's Ferry. I have been living in the same neighborhood for 20 years or more. John Haley sold a coal bank to George and Samuel Williams. It was about seven or eight miles from my coal bank. Haley and Evans worked it some."

To get to the Hamilton County Courthouse at Harrison from Suck Creek Road, it was a long trip for McNabb, who collected $20 for his appearance. He said he had to use four ferries to get there.

John Haley said, "Samuel Williams informed me he had received a large sum of money to invest in land. Col. James A. Whiteside drew a bond for the land, and I signed and Charles Haley signed. During the partnership I lived about five miles from G.W. Williams and about nine miles from Samuel Williams. There was a coal bank near Kelly's Ferry that the heirs of my father claimed. I was working there and received notice from Samuel Williams that he claimed the land. I quit working there until it could be settled.  

John Haley said there is a 50-acre tract in Marion County on the north side of the Tennessee River a short distance below the Suck, an undivided half of which belongs to G&S Williams.

Col. Whiteside remembered, "In December of 1839 an agreement was reached to invest in coal lands in Marion County. It was between myself and Samuel Williams of one part and Farish Carter, Ker Boyce and Richard K. Hines of the second part. They were to advance $20,000 and more later if it was thought advisable. They advanced $20,000 first in bank notes of Georgia not receivable at our land office which were returned and they drew Bills of Exchange in New York for the amount and Samuel Williams had them discounted at the branch Bank of Tennessee at Athens. The proceeds went into the possession of the Williams' - mostly into George's hands I think for he was generally the most active businessman. The coal lands were bought from John Haley and placed in the Hines Company account. When George Williams died on Aug. 9, 1842, Col. Carter and Ker Boyce were at Chattanooga to close the business. On the 11th or 12th, Samuel Williams and myself made a deed to Col. Carter."

Col. Whiteside also said, "The purchase of property from John Haley for $1,000 was made in 1839 and was part of the Carter, Boyce and Hines $20,000 investment. I had purchased of Allen White some mountain lands and interests in some coal banks in 1840 or 1841 for the Boyce, Carter and Hines Company. I later approached Samuel Williams about taking the White deed. He said he had purchased a piece of mountain land from White in about 1845, being all he could get for a bad debt. White was insolvent and owed him. He requested me to take a deed from White for him. I now consider it not worth more than $300. The strata of coal is too thin to be valuable."

The ruins of Shakerag - where Samuel Williams once hoped for a thriving coal industry - are in the Prentice Cooper State Forest along Suck Creek Road. 

Detailed Williams Ledgers Paints Picture Of Life In Early Chattanooga

A detailed ledger found among the Williams papers gives an interesting glimpse into Chattanooga in its earliest days.

Payments made and articles furnished 1842:

1 Pair shoes, amt. paid to Briggs

Amt. paid to Dady hauling at mill

Goods paid Hamill for hauling at mill, extra work about the ferry

Two pair shoes for home use, goods for pady in payment to him for extra work in gathering cattle on Sunday etc.

Paid Boys for cleaning out house

32 1/2 yards glasgow jeans, 1 pocket knife given to Wylie Nave for balance on horse Samuel Williams had levied on, and took the horse for the execution and gave credit for the full amount of the execution, and made the horse partnership property of G&S Williams

Cash paid for pork for the use of the two families

Cash paid John Hix constable

Amount paid Newsom

Goods for Negro Bob

Amount paid Jack Johnson for driving hogs in 1842

Amount assumed for Bill Bell and Joseph Bell for different kinds of work 

Coffee, cash paid A. Brown in line of some powder borrowed by G&S Williams

Cash to pay John Godsey's expense going to Esq. William Rogers on business for G&S Williams

Paid Rawlings' negro to shoe horse for Godsey to ride.   

Payments made and articles furnished 1843:

Amount paid Mrs. Henderson for board. $4.87

One cap, pair of shoes for Martin Reece bal. on boat gunnels

Paid R. Monds for repairing stable

Sundry accounts charged on J A. P.

Paid Lawson for attending court

Expense of Roan horse runaway

Riddle for repairing wagon

Paid Hooke for affidavit trust deed

Cash and indigo for Walling being a balance on cattle

Amount paid Riley Payne

Paid the subscription of G&S Williams for the building of the Chattanooga Bridge $13.35

Goods paid Taylor's Negro boy

Paid to B. Smith for note, 12 dozen spun thread and copper

Paid A.B. Lacy for bridle

Paid Riddle for cart harness

Paid Mr. Ridge for helping to get cattle out of island

One pair of shoes for Negro man

Paid Hooke for affidavit

37 yards osnaburg, spun thread for Negroes, 30 yards Bro Dom, 1 pair shoes for Negro woman $2, tobacco for work hands, powder lead for William Bell, 5 oz turkey cotton, knitting needles and 1 pair shoes, two plugs of tobacco

Paid Capt. Glass for bacon

Spun thread, for D. Walker

3/4 yards mersails thread, domestic thread, silk, etc., 3 doz buttons, powder and lead, sugar & coffee for home use

Paid Mrs. Thatcher $1 coffee & sugar, 207 pounds of bacon, 22 1/2 yards of summer goods

Amount paid Robert Watkins, 1 pair shoes, 2 weeding hoes, cash to buy flour

Amount paid to William Alford for work done on farm

Amount paid Andrew Tarks for work on farm

Paid Jacob Vandergriff for work on farm, Joshua Smalling for driving hogs in 1842 and for labor done in repairing fence on the home place, driving and gathering up stock, and other work done about the farm

Two bottles castor oil, Cook's pills, cash paid Tidwell for driving cattle bought from Hanner in Lookout Valley

Paid Lafayette Monds for putting up hogs that broke out of the lot in Chattanooga

Cash paid to A.L. Edwards for money borrowed by George W. Williams

Cash paid Samuel Green for hogs which were fatted at the mouth of Chickamauga with the hogs brought from the home place. The corn was used in fattening the hogs, paid Ed Jenkins for helping to drive hogs from Sam Green's, 7 3/4 lbs. coffee. 

Brick Store That Served As Civil War Prison, Seat Of Government, Was Built For Williams Brothers

A three-story brick building at the southwest corner of Market Street at Fourth was another of the business interests of Samuel and George Williams.

According to the Williams lawsuit that was found last year in an old building, it was built for them by Thomas Crutchfield, a master brickmason who arrived in Chattanooga at an early date. He also built a fine two-story home for Col. James A. Whiteside on Poplar Street. However, Crutchfield himself curiously lived in a collection of log - not brick - buildings at Ninth Street that were known as "The Cabins." His sons, William and Tom Crutchfield,joined with him in erecting the Crutchfield House hotel that was nearby across from the Union Station. William Crutchfield was a member of Congress and a "water witch" who famously challenged Confederate leader Jefferson Davis at the family hotel. A later descendant, Ward Crutchfield, was a prominent politician. 

The records tell of the Williams family selling the building to the partnership of McCallie and Hooke. Like Col. John P. Long, Thomas McCallie floated down the river to Chattanooga, coming from Old Washington in March of 1841. He had married a Hooke and was in partnership with his brother-in-law in a store business at the promising settlement. McCallie built a two-story frame house east of town on the road that led to Missionary Ridge. This road came to be known as McCallie Avenue. Later McCallies established a boys school along the road at the foot of the ridge as well as a school for girls known as Girls Preparatory School. 

Col. Whiteside, the attorney and business partner of the Williams brothers, said, "The book accounts which Thomas Crutchfield owed G&S Williams at the time of death of G.W. Williams were all paid by Crutchfield in the building of the brick store house sold by S. Williams to McCallie and Hooke. Expenses of three-story brick building at Chattanooga - the same sold to McCallie and Hooke. I solicited John Bridgman to take a part of the building. When the building was completed every interest in Chattanooga was much depressed. At the end Crutchfield told Bridgman he was owed $1,800 more, Bridgman told him to take his portion of the building, but Crutchfield refused. I furnished much of the lumber and materials for the building. Williams had furnished some."

In another place he said, "The north fourth of Lot 25 on Market Street, Chattanooga, was sold to McCallie and Hooke. Thomas Crutchfield had built the house on it for G&S Williams. Under the contract, I understand, McCallie and Hooke were to give Crutchfield what was coming to him. He received between $2,000 and $3,000. In the payment, Williams lifted many claims that McCallie and Hooke had on G&S Williams." 

Another record said Samuel Williams in 1843 paid Jeremiah Sloan $35 for painting a brick house he sold to McCallie & Hooke and $15 to George D. Foster for items for the house. The sale of the brick house to McCallie & Hooke brought $3,200. This house was on the north fourth of Lot 25 on Market Street on which there was a brick storehouse. Payment included some notes on G&S Williams and an 80-acre tract on the Tennessee River below Chattanooga. McCallie & Hooke were to have possession the following spring, but it was not finished until that October. The river property was said to be nearly all good bottom land. It was worth $25 to $30 per acre. It was then not cleared, but by 1850, "almost every foot of it was in cultivation." The land was conveyed to Fryar for $1,470.

There was a recording of a sale of a brick house to Hooke & McCallie for $3,200.

Crutchfield and Williams afterward were involved in much litigation. One depositions says, "G&S Williams has a considerable account against T. Crutchfield. They had considerable dealings. Crutchfield claimed they owed him considerable sums. T. Crutchfield brought suit in Hamilton County Circuit Court."

The three-story brick building at Fourth and Market long stood and was used as a prison during the Civil War and afterward as a seat of government.

The former store, with its sturdy brick walls, was put into use as a prison during the Civil War. Afterward, the city made use of it as City Hall. When the county needed a temporary site for a courthouse the city moved out and the county moved in. When a new courthouse was ready in 1878 on Courthouse Hill, the city again occupied the old building. It was also placed in use as an armory.

Unfortunately, this ancient landmark harking back to just after the Ross's Landing days was razed in the early 1900s.

Samuel Williams Owned Several Islands, Including One Named For His Family; Had Large Cattle, Farming Operation

Samuel Williams liked islands. At one time he owned four different ones in the Tennessee River in the vicinity of Chattanooga..

There was Oats Island that was near the present Haletown in Marion County. It is in Nickajack Lake. Oats Island has 64 acres.

Another Marion County island he owned was Lowry's Island near the mouth of Battle Creek. It includes 172 acres. 

He also had the 21 acres in Ross's Landing Island very near where he and his brother, George, operated a store. It was later called Chattanooga Island, then Maclellan Island.

The island most associated with him was the 342 acres of Brown's Island just across from the Williams home place near the foot of Walden's Ridge. It was first called Brown's Island for John Brown, a very early settler at Lookout Valley, who also had a tavern and a ferry. Later this large island became known as Williams Island. It is now owned by the state of Tennessee.

Samuel Williams had cattle operations on all of these islands at one time. There was also farming on Williams Island and some of his slaves lived there.

He also had cattle and farm operations along South Chickamauga Creek near the river and at the home place.

One notation in the Williams lawsuit that was discovered last March mentions "cribs of corn from Brown's Island, from the south side of the Tennessee River, and from the mouth of Chickamauga Creek."  

Samuel Williams noted in one of the papers, "Hargrove, Fort & Co. had an interest in Brown's Island, Lowry's Island and Oats Island. Brown's Island is now owned by Fort, Boyce, Whiteside and myself. I cultivated the island myself. In 1842, there were about 20 cleared acres on Brown's Island. In 1843, there were five or six acres cleared. Since then I have had cleared enough to make up 40 acres or more. I kept my cattle on the island during the winter."

John Godsey said in a deposition, "I lived with Williams in 1841 and until March 1842. I lived with Samuel Williams from February 1844 until December 1847. I helped cultivate Brown's Island every year I lived there. There were about 40 acres cleared at the time of the death of G.W. Williams. Samuel Williams cleared between 8-9 acres in the spring of 1846. George Evans cleared some upon a lease. 

"The land was worth 12 bushels per acre. Corn was 10-15 cents per bushel. There was between 45-50 acres cleared at the home place at the death of G.W. Williams. About 30 acres is good bottom land worth about 12 bushels per acre. The rest would be worth about eight bushels per acre. The house is old and out of repair. The corn was all used on the farm and fed to the stock on the farm. 

"Cattle were kept at Browns, Oats and Lowry's islands. Col. Anderson had some cattle at Lowry's Island in the winter of 1844. They were taken out in the spring of 1845. One yoke of oxen was bought of Samuel Sutton and another of Allen White. One yoke of oxen of Allen White died and the other was drowned in the high freshest of the spring of 1847. Samuel Williams built two large cribs and made a string of fence separating the cleared land from the woodland or cane on Brown's Island. The cribs were worth $10 each. Making the fence was worth $40.50.

"In the spring of 1845, Samuel Williams reset the fence around the home place. He made and put in some new rails.The resetting of the fence was worth at least $20. He had the portico to the house repaired to the amount of $10. In 1847, a cross fence was built containing 1,000 rails worth $7.50. Another was built containing 600 rails worth 70 cents per hundred. A fence was built on the fraction. I suppose it would take 3,500 rails to make the rail across the 15-acre field of the fraction. 

"A fence was put on Brown's Island in 1848. There was no fence there before that except for a small hog lot. The cleared land is all on one side of the fence except for one small field. The stock are on occasion driven by dogs. The fence around the 15 acres was taken away by the freshet of the spring of 1847. 

"A reasonable rent for Ross's Island opposite Chattanooga would be $20. Taking cattle on and off of the islands is a good deal of trouble. The expense of doing so would be $10 or $12 a year. I have seen several cattle kept on the islands drown. In the spring of 1847, 17 were drowned on Brown's Island and 16 were drowned on Lowry's Island."

William H. Stringer, for whom Stringer's Ridge was named, remembered, "I am acquainted with Brown's Island. I owned a preference in the island once. I leased a part of it to a Mr. Redman who was to clear 10 or 15 acres. He was also to build some cabins on it. I would suppose there were 20 or 30 acres cleared by 1838, including the Redman field. The rest has been cleared since that time. A portion was cleared by George Evans. Some 40 acres have been cleared since the death of G.W. Williams. Corn is considered to be worth 20 cents per bushel. I suppose to bring corn out of the island by boat and wagon it would be $2 per 100 bushels. In contests on corn justices normally settled at $1 per barrel."

Alexander Kelly, who lived in Marion County, said, "Oats Island is not in cultivation. It has about 64 acres - all in cane. It will winter about 50 head of cattle. Some charge a dollar a head and some $2 a head for wintering cattle. Samuel Williams uses it some. Col. Anderson kept stock on it one winter. He said he got permission from Col. Whiteside. Lowry's Island has 172 acres. The most of it is in cane. I suppose it would winter 130 or 140 head of cattle. It is difficult to get to Oats Island and attended with risk. You have to go through other people's land. There is a clear passage to Lowry's Island. There is a road and ferry to it. There is some risk to keeping cattle on it. There is a bridge across the Sequatchie River and a toll is charged in time of high water." 

James C. Connor said, "I rented land from Samuel Williams 1839-1843 lying on the river above the mouth of South Chickamauga Creek. I rented about nine acres and paid about 30 bushels rent. Corn was selling about two cents per bushel from the heap. Thomas Connor rented the land in 1844 and since that time Mr. Cook. I cleared about 12 acres and it was of the first quality. I think he rented in the 5th District to Esquire Milliken and Henry Cornett and James Lea and in the 7th District to Samuel Green. I generally paid the rent on the heap. I do not believe there have been freshets in crop time since i quit leasing from Mr. Williams except this year (1850). There were unusually high freshets in March and December 1847. I always paid for first bottom, with the exception of one or two years, 15 bushels per acre. I never paid for second bottom, but I suppose they would be worth $10 to $12 per acre and upland from eight to 10 bushels per acre, and rented a part of the crop. A third of the corn was the usual rate."

Peter Sivley, a Williams neighbor, said, "Samuel Williams rents lands from the mouth of South Chickamauga Creek to the Wayland lands, and some lay above the Wayland lands. There was some lands below the mouth of the creek, and the Schod section, and the place where Shelly lives and the place called the Bruce farm. One tract was sold to Lewis Hall. Another piece was a 26-acre fraction lying above the mouth of the creek between Cook's and Latta's. In 1847 and 1848, he got about 600 bushels of corn. In 1849, he got near 800 bushels. Colonel Whiteside and myself collected the rents below the creek. There were several leases with terms of four years for clearing - Daniel McDaniel, William Cook, H. Cornett, E. Adcock, W. Cobb, Lewis Tyner, Samuel Green and J.C. Connor. I was agent for Park, Wofford and McAfee. They owned lands on the west side of Chickamauga Creek. Concerning the Duncan field, Hiram Tyner had it in corn in 1846 and Lewis Tyner in 1847. In 1849 it was in oats by John Black. This year it is rented to William Lattee at 10 bushels of corn per acre." 

Squire Cornelius Milliken, who also lived nearby, said, "I rented and tended Williams lands on the west side of Chickamauga Creek from 1842 to 1848. I paid the rents to Col. Whiteside at 225 bushels per acre per year except one I paid part oats. James Lee paid 300 bushels per year. Henry Cornett paid 250 bushels per year. Samuel Williams himself received rents from Lewis Hall, John Lattee, William Cook, John Tyner and Lewis Tyner. Hall had 21 acres of river bottom worth 15 bushels of corn per acre. Hall has since purchased the land. Lattee cultivated 12 acres and paid 12 and 1/2 bushels per acre. Cook had 29 acres including 13 of bottom worth 12 and 1/2 bushels per acre. The other 16 were worth 10 bushels per acre. That was the fifth crop on the land. John Tyner had a few poles over seven acres at 10 bushels per acre. This was his fourth crop. Lewis Tyner had what was known as the Duncan field. It was a few poles over 13 acres and was valued at 10 bushels per acre. All the bottom lands have overflowed and the fencing removed from it several times." 

Samuel Hamill said, "John L. Divine farm has at least 70 acres of cleared land. It possesses near an equal quantity of first bottom and second bottom with the upland. It is on average worth 12 bushels per acre. The fences on the first bottom and second bottom have been removed, but there is little problem with fences on the upland. It takes much labor to keep the farm in repair. The land would be worth $2 per acre after paying repairs."

Henry Daughtry stated, "I rented from Samuel Williams one year and from Joseph G. Smith. I paid 330 bushels of corn the first year and 400 bushels the second year. Smith hauled off a portion of the rent the second year. This land was in the 7th District on the southeast side of the Tennessee River opposite Dallas Island. It went by the name of the Smith and Williams Farm."

Asahel Rawlings, whose family once was a store competitor of the Williams brothers, said, "I rented some land from Col. Whiteside for two years that was said to belong to G.W. Williams and Samuel Williams. I agreed to pay a standing rent. The fencing was all out of fix and they paid me for the repairs and cleaning up the land. I do not recollect how much I paid him in corn after taking out the repairs. I would think about $30 a year after taking out the repairs. The land lies below Chattanooga on the river and adjoining Chattanooga. I understood it belonged to a company that included Ker Boyce, Carter, Whiteside, Williams and others."  

William Varnell said, "I am acquainted with the land known as the Bruce farm. I don't think if I was going to rent this farm I could give more than $40 a year for it. I rented the Bruce farm in 1843 from Samuel Williams and held it for three years. I paid a third of what was made for the rent. I don't think corn sold for any of those years more than 20 cents if that high. The first year there was about 15 acres sowed in oats. The other two years it was about 20 acres. The first two years it was about $30 for repairs. The last year was about $10. The oats averaged about 20 bushels to the acre and were worth about 20 cents a bushel."

Other notations relating to the farm and cattle operation included:

Received from Samuel Williams $1.15 for boarding hands for G&S Williams. Henry Cornett. January 11, 1843. Promise to pay Henry Long $50 for value received of him. July 23, 1839. G&S Williams. Samuel Williams account with James Eaton. March 1840. Wagons and hands stacking oats. $2. April Two days wagon and hands. $7. April 6. Half day wagon and hands. $1.37. July. Two days wagon and hands. $3. Three and a half hands finding themselves and shucking corn. $2.37 and 1/2. 180 bushels of corn shucked. $4.50. March 1842. Larkin Johnson. James Eaton.

Accounts of G&S Williams with John S. Godsey for one year labor. April 11, 1841 to April 11, 1842. $134. 1841. S. Williams to Absalom Sivley for hauling corn for three and a half days at $3 per day. 1841 for hauling boat gunnels. For one bushel of corn by John Godsey. For one new meal bag and two and 1/2 bushels of corn.

Dogwood, Ga., July 2, 1842. Bought of R.A. Ramsey this day 30 head of hogs for which S.W. is to pay $75. 

Account with Henry Long. Feb. 6, 1842. 250 bushels of corn at 25 cents per bushel. Total $62.50. Received full payment of Samuel Williams. June 1844.  Aug. 23, 1840 promise to pay Martin Reece 400 bushels of good sound corn.

George W. Williams to John Boydston for wintering cattle, calf and one young steer.  Sept. 17, 1842. Sworn before Elisha Parker, justice of the peace.   Cornelius Milliken, justice of the peace 1843. To Catherine Vann for six head of beef cattle at $8 each, $48. 1 head of beef cattle at $9.50. Dec. 18, 1842. J.G. Blackwell witness. 1841 and 1842. George W. Williams to John Boydston for wintering cattle, calf and one young steer.  Sept. 17, 1842. Sworn before Elisha Parker, justice of the peace.  

To A. Beason for keeping horse. Promise to pay Thomas McCallie $31 to be paid in Georgia state script April 16, 1842. Paid in settlement of rent corn except for half the rent on a piece of land attended by Peter Sivley in 1840.

Williams Papers Yield New List Of City's Earliest Settlers, Businesses

The intriguing Williams papers, unearthed at an old downtown building that was being remodeled, give historians a new list of the names of Chattanooga's earliest citizens and businesses.

The papers from a lawsuit against pioneer Samuel Williams mostly relate to the late 1830s and the early 1840s, but also have a number of references to the time when Chattanooga was still Ross's Landing. The Post Office changed the name to Chattanooga in November 1838 after it was chosen in a citizens meeting. The Legislature did not get around to officially approving the unusual new name until Dec. 20, 1839.

Here are the names, as gleaned from the Williams papers, of those who were around in Chattanooga's early days. (Many are mentioned multiple times): 

Solomon Aaron, Franklin Adams, Giles Adams, Hamilton Adams, Simpson Albright, Edward Adcock, William Alford, James M. Anderson, Josiah M. Anderson, William Walker Anderson, William Archer, Clinton Armstrong, Calvin Austin, George Austin, R.M. Aycock

William Baker, George Ballard, Jesse Ballard, William Bansit, David Basam, Elizabeth Baucom, Ezekiel Baucom, M.D. Bearden, Abel B. Beason deputy sheriff, Alsberry Beavert, Edley Beavert, John B. Beavert, William Beavert, David Newton Bell, John R. Bell, Joseph Bell, William Bell, Burrell L. Bennett, John Bennett, James Berry, William Biggs, Blackhaw, John Black, S.E. Black, Jesse G. Blackwell, William Blake, William Blancett, A.E. Blunt, -- Boatman, Solomon Bolton, E.E. Bowman, James W. Bowman, Alexander Boyd, John Boydston, Reese Bowen Brabson, James A. Braden, J.F. Bradford, Robert Bradshaw, Thomas Bradshaw, William Blake,  E.E. Bowman, James W. Bowman, Robert Brashears, Benjamin F. Bridgman, John Bridgman, Abijah Brooks, Miles Broom, Archibald Brown, B.B. Brown, Berry Brown, C.H. Brown, Charles Brown, Elizabeth Brown, Mary Brown, Reuben Brown, William Brown, Willis Brown, John M. Bruce, Thomas Bryan, James S. Bryant, Austin Buffington, George Bullard, John Bullard, Henry Buntin, Thomas G. Burgess, George W. Burkett, Eliza Burkhart, E. Burris, James E. Burrows, Lovely Burton

Starling Callihan, Allen Campbell, Benjamin B. Cannon, Frank Capps, T.M. Capps, William Carmichael, Green Carnes, John A. Carpenter, E.J. Carter, H.C. Carter, John Casady, Clinton Christian, William Christian, Missouri Clack, A. Clark, Benjamin Clark, Thomas Clark, William Clark, James Clift, William Clift, Daniel F. Cocke, Meredith Coffee, Jesse Colleton, Henry Collins, J.H. Collins, John H. Colville, Nathaniel Colston, William Compton, Dennis Condray, Laban Condray, Lilburn Condray, Sterling Condray, James C. Connor, John S. Connor, Thomas Connor, Wesley Connor, William Cook, A. Cooper, Mary Cooper, Willis Cooper, Willis Cooper, Henry Cornett, William Cornett, John Cowart, Jonathan Cox, James Crawford, John H. Crawford, Mathias Crawford, Pleasant Cressy, Charles Cross, Samuel Cross, William Crow, E. Croxton, John Crutchfield, Mrs. Crutchfield, Thomas Crutchfield, G. Cummings, Leroy Cummings, David Cunningham, James Cunningham, M. Cunningham

J. Dady, Calvin Dail, James Dail, Noah Dail, John Daley, A. Daugherty, G.M. Daugherty, John Daugherty, Thomas Daugherty, Henry Davidson, Alfred Davis, Lewis Davis, Miller Davis, Wesley Davis, William M. Davis justice of the peace, Gilbert W. Dearing, Shipley Dearing, Asa Dickson, Lawrence Dickinson, R.H. Dixon, A. Dobbins, James Dobbins, William A. Duke, E. Durham

James Easter, Solomon Easter, James Eaton, Alpheus L. Edwards, James S. Edwards, John S. Edwards, P.J.R. Edwards, George Elliott, James Ellis, Joseph Ellis, George Washington Evans, William Evans, George Fagle, John K. Farmer, Samuel Farris, George Fielding, Jonathan Fielding, David Fields, Willis Fields, James H. Finley, Benjamin Ford, James Ford, William Ford, Tomlinson Fort, E. Foster, George D. Foster, N.J. Foster, Shepherd Foster, Stephen Foster, James C. Francis sheriff,  George Frazier, Matthew Frazier, E.H. Freeman, Jacob Frizzell, Jeremiah Fryar, Pleasant Fryar, William Fryar

Robert L. Gamble, Catherine Gann, George Gann, A.S. Gannion, Thomas Gardenhire, Thompson Gardenhire, William Gardenhire, Alfred Gaut, Nancy Gaut, William Gaut, William Gentry, Leonard Gibbons, R.W. Gibson, R.R. Gist, A.H. Glascock, Capt. John G. Glass, John H. Godsey, T.C. Golden, James Goodman, Absalom Goss, Claiborn Gott, Hope Graham, Ross Graham, Samuel Green, S. Griffith, Lawson Guthrie deputy sheriff, George B. Gwaltney, Covington C. Gwinn, John Gwinn

Jackson Haggard, Alfred Haines, Charles Haines, Miles Haines, Larkin Hair, William Hale, Charles Haley, James Haley, John C. Haley, Caswell Hall, Ignatius Hall, John R. Hall, Joseph Hall, Lewis Hall, Charles T. Halsey, Samuel Hamill, Lewis Hancock, Allen Haney, G. Haney, James M. Haney, Richard Haney, William Haney, Alexander Hanna, J. Hanna, W.K. Hargroves, Dr. Nathan Harris, John J. Harrison, Jacob Hartman, John Hartman, Margaret Hartman, Martin Hartman, Samuel Hartman, Alfred Haynes, James C. Heatin, Peter Helton, Mrs. (Daniel) Henderson, Richard Henderson attorney, James Henley, William Henson, Martin Heoffer, Jesse Hibbs, A. Hilliard, John Hilliard, Peter Hilton, John Hix, C. Hixson, Daniel Hixson, David Hixson, Ephraim Hixson, William Hixson, John G. Holland, John Holloway, Samuel Holman, John A. Hooke justice of the peace, Judge Robert M. Hooke, Alfred Hooper, Charles J. Hooper, Greenway Hooper, attorney J. Hooper, Alvin Hornsty, John Howell, B.K. Hudgins, T.L. Hudgins, R. Hudson, Aaron A. Hughs, Emery Hughs, James Hughs, Martin Hughs, William G. Hughs, Charles L. Hulsey, J.W. Hunter deputy sheriff

John Igou, John B. Inlow, George Isaac, Levi Isbill, William Isbill, John Ivy

Robert Jack, Alfred Jonathan Jackson, Nimrod Jackson, Andrew James, Spencer Jarnagin, Ed Jenkins, Phagan V. Jett, A.H. Johnson, Jackson Johnson, James A. Johnson, John Johnson, Joseph Johnson, Joshua Johnson, L. Johnson, Robert L. Johnson, Thomas Johnson, William M. Johnson, Henry Jones, Jonathan Jones, Thomas Jones, William Jones

Levi Kash, Anna Keeney, James Keeney, John Keeney, William Keith, Bert M. Kellums, John Kellums, Alexander Kelly, James Kelly, Thomas P. Kelly, Allen Kennedy, G.W. Ketcham, Bart Killian, William Killian, William King, James Kincaid, William Kincaid, John Kinny

Isaac Lackings, A.B. Lacy, William C. Ladd, J. Lander, -- Latta, William Latty, Jacob Laudermilk, William Lawrence, Archibald Lawson, Bartley Lawson, Mark Lawson, Allen Lea, F.W. Lea, James Lea, Richard Lea, John W. Leckie, Elisha Lee, James Lee, Jesse Lee, Richard Lee, A.S. Lenoir, George Levi, Samuel M. Levi, Bill Lewis, Davis Lewis, John Lickin, M.P. Light, Benjamin Lindle, David Little, D.F. Locke, William Logan, Carroll Long, Henry Long, Burgess Longwith, A. Looney, Henry Long, John Pomfret Long, B. Longwith, Samuel M. Love, Gideon Lovelady, John Lovelady, Joseph Lovelady, McKinney Lovelady, William Lovelady, Robert Lumpkin, G.W. Lusk, Jonah Lusk, Josiah Lusk

Charles Macy, John Malone, Winfield Mann, Miles Mao, A.D. Maroney, Archibald J. Martin, Hugh Martin, Joseph Martin, William Mason, -- Massengill, Charles Massey, John M. McAfee, Pleasant McBride, Samuel McCallie, Thomas McCallie, Alexander McCandless, John R. McCauly, Darby D. McClure, D. McCollum, Paul McCollum, Daniel McDaniel, William McDaniel, James S. McElroy, W.T.H. McEwen, T.G. McFarland, X.G. McFarland, A.C. McKamy, William McKamy, R.C. McKee, Samuel A. McKenzie, Anderson McMillin, David McPherson, George McPherson, James McPherson, John McRee, Robert C. McRee, Alfred McSpadden, James McSpadden,  David McNabb, William Melton, William Metcalf, E. Milburn, Wesley Miles, William S. Miller, Cornelius Milliken, Samuel P. Mills, Westly Mills, Mrs. Mincher, John A. Minnis attorney, John Mitchell, L. Mitchell, S. Mitchell, E.W. Mobley, Jett Mobley, Lafayette Monds, R. Monds, Benjamin Rush Montgomery, S. Moon, Samuel Moore, Thomas Antipass Moore, William A. Moore, William H. Moore, E.W. Morgan, Thomas Morris, A.C. Morrow, Dr. William J. Morrow,  Joseph Murphy, William C. Murdock, Joseph Murphy, Abraham Myers, Ezekiel Myers, B.K. Mynatt

James Nabors, John Nave, Samuel Nave, Wylie Nave, A.B. Nelson, David Nelson, M. Nettles, Mrs. Harriet Newell, L.B. Nichols, John Norman, Samuel Norwood

Spencer Ogle, Thomas Oxley

S.L. Pace, G.W. Pankey, James  Pankey, F.A. Parham, M.B. Parham, Allen Parker, Thomas J. Park, Elisha Parker justice of the peace, Thomas Parker, William R. Parker, James Parson, R. Patterson, Obediah Patty, Riley Payne, James R. Peck, Russell Peck, Isham Perkins, John B. Perkins, Joshua Perkins, Stephen Perkins, Lane V. Perry, William Peterson, Obediah Petty, David Phipps, Solomon Phipps, Peggy N. Pickett, George Pines, Caleb E. Pleasant, Hasten Poe, T.R. Porter, Joseph L. Potter, Rector Preston, Hugh Price, Green H. Pryor, J.H. Pryor, A.G.W. Puckett

Reynolds A. Ramsey, Samuel Ramsey, David Rankin, James Rankin, Asahel Rawlings, Daniel J. Rawlings, Rezin M. Rawlings, E. Reaves, Armstead Redman, Andrew Reece, David Reese, Martin Reece, David Rice, E.C. Rice, John Rice, Miller F. Rice, William F. Rice, B. Riddle, Brittain Riddle, Mr. Ridge, James Roark, Emerson Roberts, William Roberts, Francis Rockholt, James Roddy, A.S. Rogers, Edley Rogers, Jacob Rogers, James Roberts, John Rogers, Joseph Rogers, William Jefferson Rogers clerk, John A. Rowell, William Runyan

John W. Sanders, Willis Sanders, John Sappington, John Sattee, Gross Scruggs, Elisha Sexton, P. Shadwick, Timothy Shadwick, Isom Sharp, Samuel Sharp, West Shelley, R. Shelton, Lampkin Sherrell, Thomas Shirley, Adam Simmons, Miles A. Simmons, Daniel Sivley, George Sivley, Lawrence M. Sivley, Peter Sivley Sr., Samuel Sivley, William Sivley, William Slape, Jeremiah Sloan, Joshua Smalley, Whiteman Smedley, A.O. Smith, Burrell Smith, C.W. Smith, D.L. Smith, Edward B. Smith, G.W. Smith, James M. Smith, Jesse Smith, Joseph G. Smith, Dr. Milo Smith, Moses Smith, Robert Smith, William Smith, G.W. Snodgrass, Alfred Sparks, W.G. Sparks, William Standefer clerk and master, T.W. Spicer acting justice of the peace, Capt. William Isaac Standifer, A. Stanley, Albert Stanton, E. Starling, John Starling, Wiley Starlin, Benjamin Stephens, M. Stephens, Robert Stevens, D. Stewart, Joseph Stewart, James Stinnett, (S)L.M. Stokes, Alfred Street, William H. Stringer, James Sublett, William Sublett, Charles Sullivan, Samuel Sutton, John P. Swinney, Robert Swinney

James Tankesley, Floyd Tanner, H.L. Tatum, A.D. Taylor, Bud Taylor, Dillon P. Taylor, Fox Taylor, Jack Taylor, John. E. Taylor, N.B. Taylor, R.L. Taylor, Reubin S. Taylor, William B. Taylor, Mrs. Thatcher, Samuel S. Thatcher, Elisha Thomas, John S. Thomas, Granville Thompson, Hampton Thompson, James M. Thompson, Leonard Thompson, William Thompson, Edwin Thurman, Elijah Thurman, Stephen Thurman, Mr. Thursby, -- Tidwell, J.C. Tipton, David Tittle, William Todd, Levi Trewhitt, John Tucker, Robert Tunnell, John Tyner, Lewis Tyner, R.J. Tyner, S.B. Tyner, Henry Tymannus

Bryant Underwood, M. Upshaw, William B. Upshaw

John Vail, Mrs. Vail, T. Nixon Van Dyke, Isom Vandergriff, Jacob Vandergriff, Joseph Vandergriff, Rebecca Vandergriff, Catherine Vann, Robert Vann, James Varnell, William Varnell, M.H. Vaughn, Charles Vickry, Delilah Vinsant, Thomas Vinsant

William B. Wafford, D. Wagonner, David Walker, Jesse Walker, Noah Walker, Campbell Walling, Jesse Walden, Joseph Walling, William Walling, J. Ward, James Wardlaw, James Warner, Richard Waterhouse, A.G. Watkins, Robert Watkins,  C. Watson, J.C. Wayland, William Wear, William Weaver, James E. Webb, Jesse Webb, Wiley Webb, Allen White,  John R. White blacksmith, Lewis Whitehead, James A. Whiteside, Elias Wilburn, Morgan Wilburn, D.A. Wilds, A.S. Wilkins, Benjamin Williams, E. Williams, George Washington Williams Sr., George Washington Williams Jr., Jesse Williams, Samuel Williams, Silas Williams, Thomas Williams, James Williford, John Wilson, Green Woodley, John Woods

Nancy Yearout

Here are the names of the businesses mentioned in the Williams papers:

A&H Johnson, A. Holcomb Haynes & Co., Anderson & Bennett, Anderson & McMillin, Boyce & Co., Bryan & Underwood, C. Fischer & Co., Caleb E. Pleasant & Co., Canfield & Brothers, Carmichael and Blair, Chandler & Rogers, Charles Sullivan Co., Cranfield & Brothers, Dowell & Godsey, F&H Adams, C. Fischer & Co., Guinn & Hanna, Hargrove, Fort & Co., Gist & Caldwell, J&W Sanders, J.S. Edwards & Brothers, J&S Hicks, J&S Martin, Jacob Rogers & Son, James Hughs & Brother, Kemp & Buckey, King & Co., L. Guthrie & Brother, Martin & Coffee, M.B. Parham & Co., McCallie & Hooke, Norris & Beatty, P&R Edwards, Parham & Kennedy, Park, Wofford and McAfee, Pleasant & Co., R. Patterson & Co., Ramsey and Kennedy, Rawlings & Divine, Rhea, Ross & Co., Rogers & Collins, Rogers & Stringer, Samuel Williams & Brothers, Shepherd & Foster, Shipley & Roddy, Shipley & Dearing, Sloan & Owens, Slone & Queen, Smith, Edwards & Co., Smith, Shelton & Co., Smith, Shields & Co., Shipley & Roddy, Smith, Edwards & Co., Taylor & Buntin, Thomas Elms & Co., Tolbert Jones & Co. of Baltimore, Underwood & Bryan, W&S Wyman, Watkins, Dungan & Rust, Whiteside & Brabson, Whiteside, Montgomery, Minnis, Rowls, W.S.M. & Co., Williams & White, Williams, Black & Co., William King & Co., Williams & Divine, Williams & Oxley, Williams, Whiteside & Co.

The Samuel Williams Holdings Stretched For Over 40 Miles Up And Down The Tennessee River

Samuel Williams, the "Father of Chattanooga," once had property holdings "up and down the Tennessee River for more than 40 miles," his friend, attorney and business partner James A. Whiteside noted.

Col. Whiteside added in a deposition in the Williams lawsuit uncovered last year, "Our dealings and those in which we were principal actors during that time amounted to as much as $100,000."

Those were in the latter days of Ross's Landing and the early days of Chattanooga. Williams saw a great opportunity along with his brother George when a land office opened for the rich territory only recently occupied by the Native Americans. The Cherokees were his friends, but they were ushered away from their beloved homeland. Some of the Williams family went west with them.

Some of the early purchases by Samuel Williams were for as little as a penny an acre.

Col. Whiteside said, "The real estate of G&S Williams, with the exception of the home place, was much scattered, consisting of fractional interests undivided in many tracts of land in several ranges, townships, sections and quarter sections. They are scattered through the county from a point about two miles above Harrison to the Georgia and Alabama lines."

Elsewhere he said, "1 had also with them the connection in land operations which I've explained. I had frequent settlements with them about the cattle trading and much more frequently in relation to our land dealings in order to keep all things right in such complicated transactions. My settlements were almost universally made with George or with his own immediate supervision for he always appeared to understand business better than Samuel and would keep himself advised of all that was going on touching his interest. In making such settlements he very often said to me that if a partnership was like his and his brothers that he could have no trouble and would explain the advantages of such a partnership."

One legal document outlines the multitude of the Williams holdings. Col. Whiteside described them, "The first 30 prices of land on the list were entered in the names of George and Samuel Williams and myself at one cent per acre and were owned in individual thirds. The 31st tract was held by George and Samuel Williams. The 32nd was George and Samuel Williams and myself, also originally John Bridgman but his share was transferred and at his death belonged to the heirs of Elisha Thomas dec. The heirs of Z.B. Hargrove of Georgia - I do not know them - Tomlinson Fort, John S. Thomas, Farish Carter, Samuel Igou, Benjamin B. Cannon, David N. Bell and others I do not remember.

"The 33rd was owned by the Williams partners under the Hargrove Company by the heirs of Elisha Thomas as assignees of John Bridgman, and by six other individual locators, Samuel Williams being seventh. Thomas Crutchfield, David N. Bell, James Johnson and Hugh Price were some of the locators. I do not remember the names of the others. On this parcel the old town of Vannville was laid off and several held claims on it for lots purchased. Thomas Shirley and - Pendergrass are two that I remember. The town was afterward broken up and abandoned and no settlement for title has ever taken place.

"The 34th was held by the partners in the Hargrove Company and Hargrove heirs, by the heirs of Elisha Thomas and by David N. Bell. I think Mr. Bell had partners but do not know them. The 35th tract was originally taken by several locators, Samuel Williams among them. The 37th and 38th are the Chickamauga Mill tracts. The 38th was owned by the Hargove Company. Gardenhire and Keeny claimed a portion of it. The 40th tract belonged to George and Samuel Williams and myself - the heirs of Z.B. Hargrove, Farish Carter, Tomlinson Fort, John S. Thomas to the partners in the Hines Company to Thomas J. Park and some of his partners. His partners included Wafford and McAfee.The 41st and 42nd belonged to the Hargrove Company, the Hines Company and to Thomas J. Park and his partners. The 43rd belonged to the partners in the Hargrove Company, the partners in the Hines Company and to Thomas J. Park and to George W. Gardenhire, James Gardenhire and several other heirs of William Gardenhire dec.   

"The 44th and 45th belonged to the Hines Company, Hargrove Company and Park Company. The 46th and 47th were the same but also to John Bridgman, who has since died. The 48th and 49th belonged to the Hargrove Company. The 50th to the 52nd belonged to the Hargrove Company. And similarly on down to the 62nd tract. The Hines Company and Hargrove Company have sought to consolidate their holdings."

Here is another list of Samuel Williams properties and the value:   

Lot 29, Market St. - $1,000

2/9th of Lot 35 Market St. - $110

2/9th of Lot 46 Market St. - $100

2/9th of Lot 57 Market St $94.44

2/9th of Lot 67 Market St. $44.44  

2/9th of Lot 69 Market St. - $8.88

north half of Lot 37 Market St. - $55

2/9th of Lot 66 on Chestnut St. $34.44

north half of Lot 49 on Market St. $111.11

2/9 of Lot 66 on Chestnut St. $33.33

2/9 of Lot 39 on Chestnut St. $104.44

North half of Lot 25 on Chestnut St., $56.66

South half of Lot 15 on Chestnut St. $47.77

2/9th of Lot 31 on Walnut St. $88.88

2/9th of Lot 44 on Cypress St. $36.66

2/9th of Lot 56 on Cypress St., $10

2/9th of Lot 19 on Poplar St., $3

An undivided half of 531 3/4 acres at the home place, north bank of the Tennessee River $1,500

An undivided half of 2/9th of two and one ---occupied claims, one for quarter section in Chattanooga 1 and 1/9th acres $500

An undivided half of the northeast fr. quarter section 15 township, Range 5 west containing 100 acres $50

An undivided half of 114 acres in Brown's Island, Tennessee River $427.50

Still another legal documents says, "Samuel Williams became the individual purchaser of G&S Williams' undivided interest to the following described pieces of land or town lots, he being the highest and best bidder. No. of acres in each tract - 158, 120, 25, 160, 160, 152, 40, 146.160, 160, 120, 92, 160, 160, 160, 48, 20, 14 1/4, 52 1/2, 460, 64, 53 1/3, 32, 48, 160, 160, 1, 10, Lowry's Island in the Tennessee River 192, Oats Island in Tennessee River 31 1/2, Ross's Landing Island in the Tennessee River 21  1/2 of Lot 31 on Market St., 1/4th and 2/3rd of the south half of Lot 25 on Market St., 2/9th of Lot 33 on Market St., 2/9th of Lot 53 on Market St.,  2/9th of Lot 63 on Market St.,  2/9th of Lot 65 on Market St.,  2/9th of Lot 59 on Market St.,  2/9th of Lot 56 on Market St.,  2/9th of Lot 58 on Market St., North half of Lot 23 on Market St., south half of Lot 55 on Market St., 2/9th of Lot 57 on Chestnut St., 2/9th of Lot 34 on Chestnut St., south half of Lot 53 on Chestnut St., north half of Lot 58 on Chestnut St., 2/9th of Lot 39 on Walnut St., 2/9th of Lot 32 on Cypress St., 2/9th of Lot 30 on Cypress St., 2/9th of Lot 28 on Cypress St., an undivided half of 531 and 3/4th acres at the home place on the north bank of the Tennessee River, an undivided half of 2/9th of of 2 and 1/2 occupant claims, a fractional quarter section in Chattanooga 1 and 1/9th acres, an undivided half of the N.E. fractional quarter section, 15 township, range 5 west in the Ocoee District containing 100 acres, an undivided half of 114 acres in Brown's Island Tennessee River.

"Amounting in the aggregate to $6,369.04, which is secured by four notes, two at six months and two at 12 months, executed by Samuel Williams with John L. Divine and James A. Whiteside as security. And a lien retained upon the land and the town lots until the purchase money is paid, which report being unexcepted to, it is in all things confirmed. March Term of Court, 1845." 

Another list having to do with Williams land holdings says:

Tomlinson Fort of Baldwin County, Ga.

Oats Island, Lowrys Island

Town lots in Chattanooga - Market, Chestnut, Walnut, Poplar, Cypress

21 acres Ross's Landing Island

342 acres of Brown's Island

14 acres at the Bell place

George and Samuel Williams sign land deal at Chattanooga in presence of Farish Carter and James A. Whiteside May 31, 1841

J. Nicholson's preference

J.B. Easton's preference

Milledgeville note returned to Col. Carter

Discount on N. York

To Porter for boatsman

Grigs by preference

To Porter for one-half floating town claim

Entry money

Parker's preference

To Rawlings

To Thurman floating town claim

Col. Carter's order in favor of Major Hason

Purchase 2,500 acres coal banks 

Purchase Brainard Mills

Amt. to S. Williams and Whiteside

Entry Nicholson

Purchase N. Chicka coal banks $500

Purchase Clift & McRee's coal banks $200

Paid for impor Red Bird gr.

Paid Vail on land and mills making all $1,200

Entry Jones

Paid for Walling spring

Parker gr.

80 acres coal banks

Entry 40 acres, 40 acres, 20 acres, 20 acres, 80 acres

Entry Mrs. Wilburn 30 acres

Purchase half lot #40 Chestnut

Half #70 Market St. $233

Purchase lot 43 Poplar St $90

Purchase acre mouth of Chicka $15

State and county tax on land and lots for 1840 $53.42

Corporation taxes 1840 $4.47

Purchase lot #31 Poplar St $375

Fees on deed from Rawlings for 25 acre fraction $1.28

Purchase Allen White's interest in Jack & Clift's & McRee's coal bank coal entries and Haley land $528

Entry money on 40 acres $20.75

Entry money on 5 acres $2.50

Paid for grants $10

Amt due Carter, Boyce & Hines Sept. 20, 1842 

Williams Papers Tell Much Of The Lot Of The Slaves In Early Chattanooga

There were few antebellum plantations in the Chattanooga region, but on the banks of the Tennessee River five miles below town Samuel Williams had "an old-fashioned Southern plantation that was cultivated entirely by slaves.''

The Williams papers that were uncovered in an old downtown building last year tell much about the lot of the slaves in the Ross's Landing days and the first years of Chattanooga.

They tell of the slaves being bought and sold and how they were valued at so many dollars per month or at a sale price.

One listing mentions "the accounts and debts due the firm of Williams & Oxley. Three of four or perhaps a half dozen inferior shotguns sold by G&S Williams at auction. Silas Williams kept all the livestock, cattle, horses, mules and hogs. G&S Williams got a negro woman which they sold four or five days later to Anna Keeney on April 11, 1841." 

Jeremiah Fryar said, "I bought a slave from Samuel Williams named Soos. She was 12 or 13. I paid $400 for her. I think the money went to pay a debt. I sold Soos (back) to Samuel Williams and I think he sold him to a man named Cross in Alabama. 

John Starling said that George Williams "bought the slave Bob there in the settlement where he lived. He was bought from a man named Johnson."

Jesse G. Blackwell stated, "I know that one of the Negro women is much diseased and has been for several years - both her and her family of children." 

There were these notations:

Negro girl named Susan owned by firm of G&S Williams sold for $400 to Charles Cross

Sold Ann Keeney a Negro for $700 and took a note on Wayland.

When George Williams Jr., brother of Samuel Williams, died in August of 1842, the settling of the estate gave a  

Description of 10 Negroes

Bob, aged 33 years; Patrick, a man aged 29 years; Fanny, a woman aged 21 years; Ginny, a woman aged 28 years; Stephen, a boy aged 11 years; Jack, a boy aged 9 years; Albert, a boy aged 8 years; Jordan, a boy aged 7 years; Minerva, a girl aged 2 years; Eliza, a woman aged 21 years.

Elizabeth, the widow of George, received some of the slaves. At the time she and her two young sons and Samuel and his large family were both living in the big Williams home across from Williams Island. She later moved out and ended up suing Samuel Williams.

One notation says, "After death of George W. Williams, Samuel Williams did not appropriate the slaves for his own use, but for the support of both families." 

However, the other side claimed, "Elizabeth was put off with the negro woman Jinny and boy Albert and some three or four cows. The cows died except for one."

One person said in a deposition, "The Negroes were mostly women and children and the service of all of them applied to the support and maintenance of themselves and the livestock which was disposed of. He was furnishing articles of food and clothing for the two families that were still living together, for the Negroes yet unsold, and for the hired hands.

"He also appropriated the cabin of the Negroes and the use of the Negroes. From the age and character of the slaves, they were not worth more than their support." 

George D. Foster said, "Left on the farm at the time of George Williams' death were hogs, horses, cattle, Negroes, household furniture, bees, farming tools, one wagon and corn. There was something like seven or eight Negroes. I don't know the amount of property or stock. I would suppose the two Negro men to be worth ten dollars a month. There are two women worth about six dollars a month. The rest are children. Two of them would be worth about four dollars a month. Any less ones would not be worth their victuals."

George Williams Sr., father of Samuel and George Jr., had owned slaves also. Foster recalled, "George Sr. had an old Negro woman and two small boys that he let Richard Waterhouse have after the death of Richard G. Waterhouse. It was an over payment that was to go to Waterhouse to go toward paying for the land that Bud Taylor or some other of the connection had bought from Waterhouse. There was a portion of the Negroes I was acquainted with and a portion I did not know much about."

As a result of the lawsuit there was an estate sale that included the slaves. 

Capt. John P. Long said, "At the Williams sale the Negroes were all there except for a woman and perhaps her child. They were bid off for the widow. One of the Negro men (Paddy) I should judge to be about 30 years old and said to be in good health. The other (Bob) was somewhat older and appeared to be in bad health. One of the women (Eliza) seemed to be about 25 years old and had the appearance of good health. The balance I do not recollect about. I would think that they sold for very fair prices."

Another said, "I was at the G.W. Williams residence when there was to have been a sale of two or three Negroes and other property. I went there for the purpose of purchasing a Negro or two, and, owing to Mr. Berry's not being willing to let Samuel Williams purchase the property without paying the money, he would not let the property be sold. Samuel Williams said he had paid a good bit of the firm's debts and he felt if this property was sold it would not bring its full value."

One witness said of Samuel Williams, "He has always had a good deal of property about him I think. I have not known of him buying any land or Negroes since the death of G.W. Williams." 

There was this notation from the estate sale:

10 Negroes. 8 purchased by Samuel Williams. Bob $550, Patrick $600, Fanny $400, Eliza $500, Stephen $300, Jack $300, Jourdan $250, Minerva $200. Widow purchased Jenny $400, Albert $300.

 

There are various listings of items being bought for the slaves.

One mentions "8 pounds of cotton for boy Paddy."

Another says "goods for Negro Bob."

Still another reports "one pair of shoes for Negro man."

There was "37 yards osnaburg, spun thread for Negroes, and 1 pair shoes for Negro woman $2."

Samuel Williams on one occasion "paid Rawlings' Negro to shoe horse for Godsey to ride."

Another entry speaks of "goods paid Taylor's Negro boy."

In the September court term 1846, Claiborne Gott disclosed that he had married the widow Elizabeth and been appointed guardian for the minor heirs of G.W. Williams - Pleasant and Calvin Williams.

The court said that the "title of Negroes was vested with Gott."

Most of the Williams slaves lived on Williams Island, except for the house servants, including the chief cook and the coachman. It was said that Samuel Williams each morning would rise at 4 a.m. and holler in a loud voice from his front porch to awaken the slaves on the island to their daily tasks. Samuel Williams Divine recalled that his grandfather did not need a cow horn, but he "relied on his clean, clear-cut voice with a whoopee on the end of it. It re-echoed back and forth across the river, hit the cliffs on either side, echoed and re-echoed, until finally it was drowned in the whirlpool of the Suck."

Just before the Civil War, Samuel Williams still had several slaves as did his son, Mattison. 

The 1850 slave census list Samuel Williams with seven slaves - one male 18 years, one female 30, one male 16, one male 3, one male 14, one female 8 and one male 1.

The 1860 census shows him with one male 22, one female 21, one female 4, one male 40 years, and one female 2 years.

When two sons of Samuel Williams were about to depart for the Civil War fighting, the Williams slaves lined up in front of the home place by the river to see them off.

In a few short years, there would be dramatic changes for the Williams family and for the Williams slaves.

Samuel Williams Captured Leader of the Andrews Raiders During The Civil War

Samuel Williams, who always seemed to be at the center of the action, was, of course, the one who captured the leader of the famed Andrews Raiders during the Civil War. He also had many harrowing experiences afterward as he sought to elude Union soldiers who wanted nothing more than to capture him in return.

Williams was a Whig and he was opposed to secession. But he "cast his lot with the Lost Cause" as he saw his sons ride away to fight for the Confederacy, Williams was now in his mid-50s, and he determined to remain at the home place as the conflict raged elsewhere. 

Chattanooga was at first in Confederate hands. A group of Raiders led by James Andrews, sought to carry out a plan to steal a locomotive engine at Kennesaw and destroy railroad bridges along the route to Chattanooga. They captured The General and were on their way north, but conductor William Fuller commandeered another engine and began the chase after them.

The exciting pursuit ended near Ringgold, with the Andrews Raiders then scattering. Several, including Andrews, were captured and placed in the dreaded Swaim's Jail on Lookout Street between Fourth and Fifth streets. While here, Andrews was delivered a letter that gave the verdict of a court martial - he was to be hanged.

The Raiders then put in effect a plan to escape from Swaim's Jail. It involved cutting through a plank floor separating other of the Raiders from Andrews and lifting him up on a rope made of their clothes being tied together. They made a longer rope for the descent from the two-story brick building.

Andrews was out first, but he happened to knock off a loose brick with his foot. Guards began firing at hime, but he was able to escape, though he had to leave his boots behind. Andrews went just south of town and climbed a tree with dense foliage within sight of the railroad station. He watched throughout the day as search parties went to and fro looking for him. When night arrived, he came down from the tree and swam the river. 

The next morning while on Moccasin Bend he came upon a boy in a canoe and he directed him to take him to a nearby island. After letting Andrews out on Williams Island, the boy went directly to the home of Samuel Williams and informed him about the strange man. Samuel Williams immediately thought it might be one of the escaped prisoners. That day at noon he went by a spring house on the island and saw a man with cut and bleeding feet.

Samuel Williams asked the man if he was one of the men who "broke jail yesterday." Williams then said, "Well, you are in a poor garb to get away. You stay here until I go to the house to get you some clothes." Williams then went to his house to secure some food and clothes, which he took over to James Andrews. The escaped prisoner then told Williams he had been accused of burning some railroad bridges. He was continuing his tale when two men who were staying at the Williams house walked up. Armed with rifles, they demanded that Andrews go into their custody. The two men were William Standifer, who had lived in the north part of Hamilton County for many years, and a Dr. Craig from Kentucky, who had come to the Williams place to buy mules. Standifer was a Confederate sympathizer. The three men took James Andrews to the Williams home. 

Andrews must have been impressed by this Southern mansion by the river. The woodwork had been hauled from Baltimore. It was a two-story house with a portico in front and a one-story section extending straight back in the rear. The high, old-fashioned mantels above the fireplaces were all hand-wrought. One of them was painted with a picture of the bluff and orchard that was in front of the house. There was a spiral staircase as well as a hallway running the entire length of the house. Hickory nuts, sugar lumps and candies were in the heavy sideboard in the dining room, and cured meat and hams were in the smokehouse. The kitchen was away from the main portion of the house, but it was connected by a raised runway made of big logs.

The celebrated prisoner had dinner, then he took a seat on the porch facing the calm Tennessee River and described his escape. He also told the Williams family he did not make the attempt to sabotage the Confederate railroad through patriotism, but he was engaged to a girl back home and he wanted to win the money that was promised for the dangerous mission. Some members of the Williams family felt sorry for Andrews. But Samuel Williams and William Standifer took him to the Confederate authorities in Chattanooga on Wednesday, June 4, 1862. The following day soldiers in Chattanooga began building a scaffold for use in hanging the leader of the Andrews Raiders.

Then reports came that the Federal Army was heading rapidly for Chattanooga. On the day before the planned execution date, Andrews was ordered moved to Atlanta. On June 7, the leader of the Andrews Raiders was taken to a gallows a block from Peachtree Street in Atlanta and hanged.

In July 1863, the Federals suddenly appeared just across from Chattanooga. The home of Samuel Williams on the north side of the river was already in the hands of the Federals. Fearing for his life, Williams had left his home to hide out prior to the approach of the army. A group of Union soldiers had arrived on a raiding expedition and searched the Williams house thoroughly. They even went to the extent of looking up the chimneys. The soldiers took all of the freshly-ironed shirts that were hanging in the kitchen. However, they did not find the valuable family matches because one of the Williams daughters had hidden them upon her person.

Keturah Williams was so frightened by the soldiers that she ran upstairs and cried out, "You can have anything in the house if you will spare my family." One of the soldiers called back, "We are not going to hurt you. We are looking for firearms." The Federals then took charge of the Williams home, forcing them to move into one room, which had only a single window. After the Federal soldiers would eat their meals, the Williams family would go down to the kitchen in the yard to get something to eat.

One night Keturah was in her room when she unexpectedly heard a tapping on a window pane at the foot of the bed. Samuel Williams had made his way back  to the farm, piled some rocks against the house so he could climb up, and reached the window. His wife instinctively let out a scream, drawing a Federal officer to her room immediately to find out what was the matter. Mrs. Williams, meanwhile, had decided it might be her husband outside the window, so she told the officer "there was some excitement in the Negro quarters." Then she directed her daughter, Allie, to play the piano as hard as she could to divert attention while Samuel Williams slipped away from the house to the river. Williams approached one of the slaves, who was drawing water. He directed the slave not to tell anyone but Mrs. Williams that he was nearby. Samuel Williams began staying under a rock on a hillside and seeing his wife occasionally at night.   

The wife of Samuel Williams and Mary Divine were among the few who passed over the awful Chickamauga Battlefield in the days just after the battle. Samuel Williams was now living at McLemore's Cove near LaFayette, and they were on their way to visit him. The two women managed to find an Army ambulance in which they were allowed as passengers. At the battlefield they saw "the chaos of great shattered trees, the earth torn and scarred from the cannonading, and many bodies of soldiers yet unburied." 

During a time of starvation later during the war period, Keturah Williams was successful in importuning one of the Federal officers for food. The Federal soldiers had taken 41 cured hams belonging to the Williams family, leaving them only with hardtack, honey and one cow. Mrs. Williams walked five miles to the headquarters of General John Wilder and asked for the rations on the basis that the soldiers had taken most of the family's food. General Wilder ordered a conveyance, gave Mrs. Williams back some of her meat, and prepared to send her home. First, however, he urged her to send for her husband. She told the Federal officer, "You would protect him, but what would happen when you went away."

General George Thomas especially wanted Samuel Williams captured because he knew the country so well. It was well known that Williams had guided the Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest in the vicinity of Walden's Ridge and Raccoon Mountain. Besides that, General Thomas and others in the Union Army had not forgotten that Samuel Williams was the one who had turned James Andrews over to the Confederate authorities. General Thomas vowed that Williams would hang if he were captured.

When the war was finally over, Samuel Williams at first was unable to return to what was left of his riverbottom farm. He was still in disfavor with the Federals for his role in capturing James Andrews. Members of the family had known Andrew Johnson when he was a tailor at Greeneville, Tn. This prompted Keturah Williams to go to Washington and plead with the Reconstruction president concerning the safety of her husband and the protection of their land. The Williams holdings had already shrunk from several thousand acres to a small area around the home place and Williams Island. President Johnson granted an interview to the wife of Samuel Williams immediately upon her arrival in Washington. He wrote a letter for her that stated that anyone who tried to take the Williams land would have to answer to him personally. A pardon was granted to Samuel Williams. 

After the successful Washington trip, Samuel Williams was finally able to return home. The former prosperous slave owner was now almost naked. His son-in-law, John L. Divine, took him to Joseph Ruohs' store and bought him a suit of clothes. Samuel Williams continued to receive threatening letters for some time after he resettled by the Tennessee River. 

One of his sons, Jim Williams, had fallen at the Battle of Perryville. He was first wounded by a shot that killed the horse he was riding. Young Williams had then leaped upon another horse that had lost its rider, and he continued in the charge. A moment later he was killed by a cannonball.

Another son, Alonzo Williams, died on a March in the Kentucky campaign.

Depositions In Williams Lawsuit By Chattanooga Pioneers Give Interesting Details Of City's Early Days

Depositions in the Williams lawsuit that was discovered in an old building last year give first-hand accounts of the early days of Chattanooga.

Some of the city's leading pioneers made the trek to the county courthouse at Harrison to answer the attorneys' questions.

Some of the same close associates of Samuel Williams were called four or five times in the long-running lawsuit from around 1845 to 1852.

Sometimes their ages were listed. On others, they told how far they had traveled and how many ferries they had to cross.

The clerks of the day wrote in a flowing cursive that is mainly very legible. At one section there is a beautiful calligraphy that would have delighted the late William Raoul.

Many sections of these depositions were used in the prior articles in this series.

Colonel James A. Whiteside June 6, 1850. Was duly sworn on the Holy Evangelists of Almighty God." At time of G.W. Williams death he had a drove of stock cattle on their road to the Virginia market under charge of Silas Williams, who also took cattle of his own. 578 started. 14 were lost on the road. 284 G&S Williams and 248 Silas Williams. All sold for $4,095.46 in September 1842. G.W. Williams went several days with the drive, then returned home. Creditors in Baltimore were alarmed about the solvency of the debtor and that the business of the firm was much embarrassed. Several of the claims were sent to Tennessee attorneys for collection. In order to save Samuel Williams' credit, I borrowed for him from Silas Williams a large portion of the proceeds of the cattle drive. Small portion of Baltimore debts in name of Williams & Oxley, which was dissolved in the spring of  1841. Samuel Williams assumed those payments. There has also been a firm of S. Williams & Bros. that had been dissolved before the death of G.W. Williams. Also dissolved was firm of Williams, Whiteside & Co. in which James S. Edwards was involved. G&S Williams was to pay a debt I owed to James Eaton's administrator for about $100. I had given a note for a lot of corn bought at the sale of Eaton's property. Corn went to G&S Williams, which sold it to a contractor on the railroad. Joseph G. Smith had a small portion of the debt. Silas Williams was a very close hard trader and dealt with his brothers as with strangers. Silas Williams died in the fall of 1843 on his return from Baltimore. Samuel Williams formerly occupied a house on Market Street. This was rented one year to John Colville. House was sold to G.W. Williams heirs. Samuel Williams has received the rent on a portion of the lands of the Hargrove and Fort Company. He managed a portion of this land. Nearly all the town lots were unimproved and unproductive. G&S Williams owned two ninths of this land and lots. Samuel Williams has had litigation with John Vail and A.E. Blunt on a $1,200 claim by Vail. This was related to the purchase of lands of the Carter, Boyce and Hines Company. Eighty acres was purchased for $1,200 in 1839. Williams agreed to let Crutchfield have one-half of the interest purchased. Samuel Williams conveyed 40 acres to Boyce in 1842. The Williams firm used the money it received from Boyce for other purposes instead of paying for the land. The book accounts which Thomas Crutchfield owed G&S Williams at the time of death of G.W. Williams were all paid by Crutchfield in the building of the brick store house sold by S. Williams to McCallie and Hooke. Expenses of three-story brick building at Chattanooga - the same sold to McCallie and Hooke. I solicited John Bridgman to take a part of the building. When the building was completed every interest in Chattanooga was much depressed. At the end Crutchfield told Bridgman he was owed $1,800 more, Bridgman told him to take his portion of the building, but Crutchfield refused. I furnished much of the lumber and materials for the building. Williams had furnished some. Hargrove and Fort lands were mostly in Hamilton County and some in Marion County. Renters of Williams land included Lewis Hall, Lewis Tyner, John Tyner, John Sattee and William Cook. I attended to rent of lands below Chickamauga Creek. I owned an interest in all the tracts except the 26-acre one cultivated by Sattee, but Williams had no interest in it. G&S Williams owned two ninths of tract where Lewis Hall field is situated. They had one-ninth interest in lands rented by Lewis Tyner and one ninth in lands rented by John Tyner and William Cook. Land on southwest side of the creek was cultivated by Cornelius Milliken. Also owned portion of land cultivated by Henry Cornett and land cultivated by James Lee. Remaining interest in these lands was by Tomlinson Fort, Ker Boyce, Farish Carter, William B. Wofford, Thomas J. Parks, two of the McAfees, John Bridgman, William Gardenhire and myself. William Gardenhire died before G.W. Williams. Hargrove Company partners met with Samuel Williams in May 1841 and he rendered an account. He met with Carter, Fort and the executor for Hargrove (since he had died). After discussing the issue of the division and sale of the lands, it was decided that they should be for a time withheld from the market and remain undivided, and that each one should take evidence of his interest. I wrote a title bond to Carter for his interest and to Fort and the Hargrove executor for theirs. But, before the papers were prepared, Fort and Spurlock (the Hargrove executor) left Chattanooga. Carter remained, got his own bond, and took forward Fort and Hargroves. Before a final close, a discussion arose as to the superintendence of the lands, and the Williamses proposed to take them and keep them clear of all taxes, costs and charges, and in consideration of being allowed the rents. After signing the bonds, a clause was added by James S. Edwards to this effect, but the others did not sign it. They were in Chattanooga on the day G.W. Williams died to get their deeds or make some disposition of their lands. They decided to take their deeds and await a more favorable time for sale. Samuel Williams made these deeds and signed them two days after the death of G.W. Williams. There was again discussion of who should oversee the lands for the $20,000 investment of Boyce, Carter and Hines. It was decided that Samuel Williams and myself would oversee them. An agreement was signed by Ker Boyce and Farish Carter on Aug. 13, 1842. The same agreement was made with Dr. Fort - he having by this time obtained the Hargrove interest. I had purchased of Allen White some mountain lands and interests in some coal banks in 1840 or 1841. for the Boyce, Carter and Hines Company. I later approached Samuel Williams about taking the White deed. He said he had purchased a piece of mountain land from White in about 1845, being all he could get for a bad debt. White was insolvent and owed him. He requested me to take a deed from White for him. I now consider it not worth more than $300. The strata of coal is too thin to be valuable. The purchase of property from John Haley for $1,000 was made in 1839 and was part of the Carter, Boyce and Hines $20,000 investment. The Chickamauga Mills had washed away before G.W. Williams died, but the stream passed around one end of it for some two years. It was believe that Henry Timannus, who owned the land immediately above on the stream, was about to erect a mill as to prevent one on the Williams land below at the old mill. The Williamses were anxious to save their mill site and they began the erection of the mill in 1842 and were immediately enjoined by Timmanus from doing so. George Williams undertook the work and superintended the construction for a time. He took sick and died during the progress of the work, which was mostly carried forth by Samuel Williams. He incurred much expense in building and repairing the mills. He won his case with Timmanus in the Supreme Court. The title to the property was also in litigation with Gardenhire and Keeney in Chancery Court. This suit, which also was at great expense and trouble, was finally won. Samuel Williams had two-ninths of the land worked by Lewis Hall. In June 1848, there was a division with Carter, Boyce and Fort of the partnership lands. I and Samuel Williams became the owners of the remaining seven ninths of the Hall land. We soon sold to Hall at $20 per acre. The real estate of G&S Williams, with the exception of the homeplace, was much scattered, consisting of fractional interests undivided in many tracts of land in several ranges, townships, sections and quarter sections. They are scattered through the county from a point about two miles above Harrison to the Georgia and Alabama lines. It extends up and down the Tennessee River for more than 40 miles. Such stock of cattle and hogs as they kept required constant and laborious attention at all seasons. Samuel Williams has given such attention to a greater extent than any man I have ever known. The debts due to them were much scattered over the country and mostly bad. They had ceased the mercantile business some time before George died, and, being much embarrassed, had realized everything in their power in the way of cash collection and and stock, such as cattle, hogs or horses, before George died, leaving a tolerably large amount of debts due them. mostly bad. Samuel Williams has been involved in several harassing lawsuits from 1839-1850. One long and expensive suit was over the 14-acre fraction at Chattanooga involving the Carter, Boyce and Hines lands. It was settled in 1848 by dividing the 14 acres. G.W. Williams was a commissioner of the city of Chattanooga. The price of property in 1842, 1843 and 1844 was much depressed. With extraordinary exertions and sacrifices, Samuel Williams has saved the business from insolvency - a thing that seemed almost inevitable at the time of George's death and for some time after. He has from want of education or business knowledge he has not been able to proceed systematically as one better qualified could have done, but he has applied himself closely and industriously to the settlement of the complicated business thrown upon him.   

Deposition of Major John Cowart on Jan. 16, 1852: I lived about three fourths of a mile from their storehouse in Chattanooga and about four miles from G.W. Williams' house. A part of the time they both lived together. I still live at the same place. I have been a merchant 10 or more years. I have wound up, or helped to wind up, two businesses - that of Charles Sullivan and Williams, Black & Co. Samuel Williams and John L. Divine went into merchandising and stock trading. They were involved in cattle droves.

Deposition of B.M. Kellums on Jan. 16, 1852: Allen White began the repair of the Chickamauga Mills in 1842 before the death of G.W. Williams. I helped work on the mill. A considerable amount of work was done. The mill frame was put in. They were called Williams Mills. When the repairs were done, White took them under lease. I was hired by G.W. Williams and he sent me out there and paid me. Also working at the mills were West Shelley, John Kellums, William Evans, John H. Godsey and others. I continued to work at the mills for several months after his death until they were completed, and for several months afterward. White began paying. I made him take up my account at Smith, Edwards & Co.

Deposition of John L. Divine on Jan. 16, 1852: The Chickamauga Mills were under the control of Allen White after the death of G.W. Williams. 

Deposition of West Shelley on Jan. 17, 1852: Allen White came up to my house in June 1842 to see about boarding. He said he came to work on the mills. He said that G.W. and Samuel Williams were to pay for repair of the mills. White hired me to work at the mills. I worked to the amount of over $40, which Samuel Williams settled with me. White remained working at the mills for two or three years after the death of G.W. Williams. White died three or four years ago. A large part of the lumber for the mills was taken away by White for his own use. White gave orders in the name of G.W. and Samuel Williams to Chandler & Rogers and Smith, Edwards & Co. 

Deposition of Gilbert W. Dearing on Jan. 17, 1852: Allen White told me he made a contract with G.W. Williams to repair the mills and dam and building a grist mill. I worked there making the running gears of the saw mill. What White did with the lumber I don't know.  

Deposition of Jeremiah Fryar on June 5, 1851: I purchased from Samuel Williams a tract of land he got from R.M. Hooke in part pay for the brick store for $1,200. I got it in the winter of 1843. I gave six notes for $200 each, one note to be paid every year until all was paid. I paid them about the time they became due. I expect it is worth $25 to $30 per acre now. There were said to be 80 acres in the tract. He had some goods with John Divine. He has been driving stock and pretty much went to market himself. He has been persevering and energetic. He has always had a good deal of property about him I think. I have not known of him buying any land or Negroes since the death of G.W. Williams. He always said he was wrapping up the business of G&S Williams and was always pressed for money.  

Deposition of John P. Long on June 5, 1851: Capt. Long. Levy on property of J.B. Taylor. Business of Divine and S. Williams did not last very long - less than a year. 1 day, 26 miles. 

Richard Henderson deposition on June 5, 1851: Property dealing with James Kelly. Allen White and George W. Williams note to Wesley Davis. Justice of the Peace John A. Hooke. 

David Rankin deposition on June 6, 1851: James Rankin note on G&S Williams. James Pankey. He has died. He lived on my land at the time of the note. James Tankesley. 

Deposition of James A. Whiteside on June 7, 1851 

Deposition of Jesse G. Blackwell on June 7, 1851: I was a clerk for Williams & Divine mercantile establishment. Rezin Rawlings held sundry notes against G&S Williams, which were paid off in coffee and cash. G.W. Williams told me in the early part of 1842 something about a contract he had with Allen White for the rebuilding of the mills on South Chickamauga Creek. I was employed by Samuel Williams soon after the death of G.W. Williams to help in winding up the affairs of G&S Williams. I continued in that business for an extensive time. Once was a firm of Rawlings & Divine. In the winter of 1843-1844, Samuel Williams and John L. Divine bought a small drove of hogs that were purchased near the Kentucky line and drove them to Alabama. At the time Samuel Williams had a tolerable good wagon and three mules that he sold in the South for about $290. The mules had been bought from Jack Taylor. I believe the wagon was bought from Jerry Fryar. 2 days 70 miles.

Deposition of John L. Divine on June 7, 1851: I was clerking for Rezin Rawlings. Samuel Williams got the goods for setting up a store with me from Baltimore. Cattle were bought and driven to Virginia. The coffee was purchased of Tolbert Jones & Company, Baltimore. Samuel Williams never went off with the cattle more than 12 or 14 miles.  

Deposition of John A. Minnis. Lawsuit Joseph G. Smith, James S. Edwards, John S. Edwards vs. Samuel Williams. 

Deposition of Josiah M. Anderson, July 27, 1851: James Pankey showed me a note he held on G&S Williams for about $25. He came to my house in 1844 and told me that Samuel Williams had paid part of the note and left the rest with me to be paid. Samuel Williams paid the balance to me - about $8. I paid Pankey the balance. He died a short time after.  

Deposition of John Godsey. I lived with Williams in 1841 and until March 1842. I lived with Samuel Williams from February 1844 until December 1847. I helped cultivate Brown's Island every year I lived there. There were about 40 acres cleared at the time of the death of G.W. Williams. Samuel Williams cleared between 8-9 acres in the spring of 1846. George Evans cleared some upon a lease. The land was worth 12 bushels per acre. Corn was 10-15 cents per bushel. There was between 45-50 acres cleared at the home place at the death of G.W. Williams. About 30 acres is good bottom land worth about 12 bushels per acre. The rest would be worth about eight bushels per acre. The house is old and out of repair. The corn was all used on the farm and fed to the stock on the farm. Cattle were kept at Browns, Oats and Lowrys islands. Col. Anderson had some cattle at Lowry's Island in the winter of 1844. The were taken out in the spring of 1845. One yoke of oxen was bought of Samuel Sutton and another of Allen White. One yoke of oxen of Allen White died and the other was drowned in the high freshest of the spring of 1847. Samuel Williams built two large cribs and made a string of fence separating the cleared land from the woodland or cane on Brown's Island. The cribs were worth $10 each. Making the fence was worth $40.50. In the spring of 1845, Samuel Williams reset the fence around the home place. He made and put in some new rails.The resetting of the fence was worth at least $20. He had the portico to the house repaired to the amount of $10. In 1847, a cross fence was built containing 1,000 rails worth $7.50. Another was built containing 600 rails worth 70 cents per hundred. A fence was built on the fraction. I suppose it would take 3,500 rails to make the rail across the 15-acre field of the fraction. The fence was put on Brown's Island in 1848. There was no fence there before that except for a small hog lot. The cleared land is all on one side of the fence except for one small field. The stock are on occasion driven by dogs. The fence around the 15 acres was taken away by the freshest of the spring of 1847. A reasonable rent for Ross's Island opposite Chattanooga would be $20. Taking cattle on and off of the islands is a good deal of trouble. The expense of doing so would be $10 or $12 a year. I have seen several cattle kept on the islands drown. In the spring of 1847, 17 were drowned on Brown's Island and 16 were drowned on Lowry's Island. 

Deposition of Gilbert W. Dearing. The hubs and irons of one set of wheels are at the Chickamauga mills - the woodwork being worn out with the exception of the hubs. They are worth $15 to $18. There was another pair, but its wood work was entirely worn out. I had the wood  work of the wheels made entirely new. I just used the irons. 

Deposition of Robert M. Hooke. McCallie and Hooke purchased the north fourth of Lot 25 on Market Street on which there was a brick storehouse. We paid about $3,200 for it. Payment included some notes on G&S Williams and a tract on the Tennessee River below Chattanooga. We were to have possession the following spring. It was not finished until that October. Williams had an agreement with Jeremiah Fryar on a tract of land. It contained 80 acres, nearly all good bottom land. It was worth $25 to $30 per acre. It was then not cleared. It is now almost every foot of it in cultivation. The land was conveyed to Fryar for $1,470. 

Deposition of John L. Divine. I went into business with Samuel Williams on the first day of January 1843. Our partnership closed about 1845. Note due Carmichael and Blair. Note paid to Tolbert Jones & Co. in Baltimore in 1843. Elizabeth Gott moved to a farm near Chattanooga called the 104-acre fraction. She moved the old log cabins. One was moved a small distance, the other about a mile. I had the houses put up myself and hired the most of the hands to get out boards, etc. She had about $30 in improvements. We sold goods and stock. We sold goods not more than one year - the balance of the time we traded in hogs and cattle. Our first stock of goods amount to $1,885. We sold it for at least $1,200 or $1,500 profit. We then drove near 300 head of cattle to Virginia in 1843, which we made $1,350 profit. While in Baltimore I bought another stock of goods, which we never opened. We sold those goods to Doctor Mitchell for about $450. We also drove nearly 500 head of hogs, which we made over $700. We drove another drove of cattle to Virginia in 1845. There were many other transaction of which we made considerable money. The profit was near $4,000. One drive the most of them was old and heifers. I did not want to put them in, but he said we must put everything in to raise money. I would think the cost of driving hogs to Augusta would be between $1.25 and $1.50 per head.

Deposition of Jesse G. Blackwell. I attended to much of the business of Williams and Divine, especially the mercantile part. Payments to hands for driving hogs to market in the fall of 1842. Calvin Dail, $12.75, Giles Adams, $10.37, Jack Johnson $6.25. Joshua Smalley $12 (for the drive and work at the home place 1842 and 1843. Amount paid to Ramsey and Kennedy.   

Deposition of William H. Stringer. I am acquainted with Brown's Island. I owned a preference in the island once. I leased a part of it to a Mr. Redman who was to clear 10 or 15 acres. He was also to build some cabins on it. I would suppose there are 20 or 30 acres cleared by 1838, including the Redman field. The rest has been cleared since that time. A portion was cleared by George Evans. Some 40 acres have been cleared since the death of G.W. Williams. Corn is considered to be worth 20 cents per bushel. I suppose to bring corn out of the island by boat and wagon it would be $2 per 100 bushels. In contests on corn justices normally settled at $1 per barrel. 1 Day, 26 miles (to court).

Deposition of Alexander Kelly. Oats Island is not in cultivation. It has about 64 acres - all in cane. It will winter about 50 herd of cattle. Some charge a dollar a head and some $2 a head for wintering cattle. Samuel Williams uses it some. Col. Anderson kept stock on it one winter. He said he got permission from Col. Whiteside. Lowry's Island has 172 acres. The most of it is in cane. I suppose it would winter 130 or 140 head of cattle. It is difficult to get to Oats Island and attended with risk. You have to go through other people's land. There is a clear passage to Lowry's Island. There is a road and ferry to it. There is some risk to keeping cattle on it. There is a bridge across the Sequatchie River and a toll is charged in time of high water. 1 Day. 46 miles from Marion. 

Deposition of Reese B. Brabson. Sometime in the spring of 1847, Benjamin B. Cannon said to me he had taken the notes of Samuel Williams for costs in the Circuit Court and it seemed that he would never pay, always pleading that he was hard run. The notes amounted to $123. He said he would take $100, and I paid him that. 

Deposition of David McNabb. Age 39. My understanding there is a tract of about 1,200 acres. It lies on the side and the top of the mountain opposite Kelly's Ferry and Savannah Island. Samuel Williams came down there and said we would have to be stopped from working at the coal banks - that there were minor heirs who had an interest and it was sort of a difficult case that a back slam might come against a fellow after a while. I rented the coal banks from Mr. Williams and gave him my obligation for a third of the coal that we took out. His third was to be left at the bank. I think he received $5 Or $6 from Mr. Sterling for rent of the coal lands. Mr. Pearson bought 20 yards of the coal bank. He was to pay for some coal he had previously dug. Robert Jack, who lives on Sale Creek, said he had sold it to Williams. The coal had been discovered at the time of the sale. It went by the name Jack's Entry. Williams sold the land to me for $300. I was acquainted with Allen White. He lived in a house on the mountain. He had been ailing for some time and went there for his health. He died at the house. I lived at the north side of the Tennessee River in Marion County about two miles above Kelly's Ferry. I have been living in the same neighborhood for 20 years or more. John Haley sold a coal bank to George and Samuel Williams. It was about seven or eight miles from my coal bank. Haley and Evans worked it some. 1 Day 40 miles, four ferriages $20 from Marion County.     

Deposition of James C. Connor. I rented land from Samuel Williams 1839-1843 lying on the river above the mouth of South Chickamauga Creek. I rented about nine acres and paid about 30 bushels rent. Corn was selling about two cents per bushel from the heap. Thomas Connor rented the land in 1844 and since that time Mr. Cook. I cleared about 12 acres and it was of the first quality. I think he rented in the 5th District to Esquire Milliken and Henry Cornett and James Lea and in the 7th District to Samuel Green. He rented the mills to Allen White. I think he rented a saw mill to John A. Carpenter one year for a third of the lumber he made. I rented all three of the mills from Allen White one year. For the grist mill, I paid about $100. I rented one of the saw mills to Carpenter. There are frequent overflows of the river in the spring with fences being carried off. There were not any very high freshets while I rented the mills from Williams - only in June 1840. There have been several high freshets since I rented from Mr. Gardenhire on the river below where I rented from Mr. Williams and they were considerably damaged. I suppose all bottoms were overflowed and damaged some. I generally paid the rent on the heap. I do not believe there have been freshets in crop time since i quit leasing from Mr. Williams except this year (1850). There were unusually high freshets in March and December 1847. I always paid for first bottom, with the exception of one or two years, 15 bushels per acre. I never paid for second bottom, but I suppose they would be worth $10 to $12 per acre and upland from eight to 10 bushels per acre, and for rented a part of the crop. A third of the corn was the usual rate.2 Days. 22 miles. Two ferriages. $20.

Deposition of Peter Sivley, 36. Samuel Williams rents lands from the mouth of South Chickamauga Creek to the Wayland lands, and some lay above the Wayland lands. There was some lands below the mouth of the creek, and the schod section, and the place where Shelly lives and the place called the Bruce farm. One tract was sold to Lewis Hall. Another piece was a 26-acre fraction lying above the mouth of the creek between Cook's and Latta's. In 1847 and 1848, he got about 600 bushels of corn. In 1849, he got near 800 bushels. Colonel Whiteside and myself collected the rents below the creek. There were several leases with terms of four years for clearing - Daniel McDaniel, William Cook, H. Cornett, E. Adcock, W. Cobb, Lewis Tyner, Samuel Green and J.C. Connor. I was agent for Park, Wofford and McAfee. They owned lands on the west side of Chickamauga Creek. Concerning the Duncan Field, Hiram Tyner had it in corn in 1846 and Lewis Tyner in 1847. In 1849 it was in oats by John Black. This year it is rented to William Lattee at 10 bushels of corn per acre. 

Deposition of Squire Cornelius Milliken, 58. I rented and tended Williams lands on the west side of Chickamauaga Creek from 1842 to 1848. I paid the rents to Col. Whiteside at 225 bushels per acre per year except one I paid part oats. James Lee paid 300 bushels per year. Henry Cornett paid 250 bushels per year. Samuel Williams himself received rents from Lewis Hall, John Lattee, William Cook, John Tyner and Lewis Tyner. Hall had 21 acres of river bottom worth 15 bushels of corn per acre. Hall has since purchased the land. Lattee cultivated 12 acres and paid 12 and 1/2 bushels per acre. Cook had 29 acres including 13 of bottom worth 12 and 1/2 bushels per acre. The other 16 were worth 10 bushels per acre. That was the fifth crop on the land. John Tyner had a few poles over seven acres at 10 bushels per acre. This was his fourth crop. Lewis Tyner had what was known as the Duncan field. It was a few poles over 13 acres and was valued at 10 bushels per acre. All the bottom lands have overflowed and the fencing removed from it several times. 

Deposition of Samuel Hamill. John L. Divine farm has at least 70 acres of cleared land. It possesses near an equal quantity of first bottom and second bottom with the upland. It is on average worth 12 bushels per acre. The fences on the first bottom and second bottom have been removed, but there is little problem with fences on the upland. It takes much labor to keep the farm in repair. The land would be worth $2 per acre after paying repairs.

Deposition of Henry Daughtry. I rented from Samuel Williams one year and from Joseph G. Smith. I paid 330 bushels of corn the first yea and 400 bushels the second year. Smith hauled off a portion of the rent the second year. This land was in the 7th District on the southeast side of the Tennessee River opposite Dallas Island. It went by the name of the Smith and Williams Farm.

Asahel Rawlings. I rented some land from Col. Whiteside for two years that was said to belong to G.W. Williams and Samuel Williams. I agreed to pay a standing rent. The fencing was all out of fix and they paid me for the repairs and cleaning up the land. I do not recollect how much I paid him in corn after taking out the repairs. I would think about $30 a year after taking out the repairs. The land lies below Chattanooga on the river and adjoining Chattanooga. I understood it belonged to a company that included Ker Boyce, Carter, Whiteside, Williams and others.   

William Varnell. I am acquainted with the land known as the Bruce farm. I don't think if I was going to rent this farm I could give more than $40 a year for it. I rented the Bruce farm in 1843 from Samuel Williams and held it for three years. I paid a third of what was made for the rent. I don't think corn sold for any of those years more than 20 cents if that high. The first year there was about 15 acres sowed in oats. The other two years it was about 20 acres. The first two years it was about $30 for repairs. The last year was about $10. The oats averaged about 20 bushels to the acre and were worth about 20 cents a bushel.

Daniel Sivley. Samuel Williams has been engaged in the buying and selling of stock. He has been engaged more or less every year in the driving hogs or cattle.   

John Norman. Allen White hired all the hands and Williams paid all. White paid us off and stopped work and said he would stop buying so many goods. Williams said when he came back he would have goods of his own to pay with when they went with the hogs. He had been working a good while. He worked at the mill.The mill was owned by Williams. White carried it on. Williams was very often there superintending the business. Obediah Patty said he worked at the mills and was paid in articles at the store of Smith, Edwards & Co. He said drawn orders were given for goods at the store. He saw some of the hands get paid there and some at Long's store. Williams said when he came back from the east they would have goods of their own. This was the fall of 1842. Brittain Riddle said he made a pair of timber wheels, and the work was worth $47. He was paid first out of the store of Smith, Edwards & Co. and Williams paid him the balance. He said Allen White was not good for his debts. John Godsey was to have some iron to make a stirrup for the saw mill and charge it to Samuel Williams.This was Oct. 31, 1842. Pay Burt Kellum $15.30 and charge it to Samuel Williams. Let West Shelley have $2 on your store. Also, Frank Capps $3, A. Looney 50 cents, Shipley Dearing. September 1842, Allen White let George Evins have $6 in your store and let Thomas Discon have $2 and charge it to Samuel Williams. Oct. 15, 2842, let Henry Ison? have $4.50 in goods and charge it to Samuel Williams. Let William Mason have $3.50. John Norman $2 in goods. Send Cornelius Milliken the following articles and charge it to Samuel Williams - four barrels of meat, 10 pounds of coffee, one large tin bucket, and six tin cups. Allen White said let Mr. McGehe have $1.50. Let Mr. Riddle have $2. Pay William Baker $4.50. Mr. Baucum have $4. Mr. Cook have $2. Frank Capp have $3. John R. Bell have 70 cents. John Kinny $7. John Tyner $6. Mr. Boren have $11. William Jones $10. John Kiling $5. William Lawrence $2. Bart Celing $3. John Keling $4. One cake of shaving soap. Let William Jones have $6 or $7. D.A. Wilds $4. Gross Scruggs $2.70. R.W. Gibson $5.   

West Shelly worked on the mills. There were a good many hands who worked at the mill. Allen White had a yoke of oxen and a cart. White had the mills three or four years. He got behind and left.

Gilbert W. Dearing said White hired him in the fall of 1842. Said he would pay him in Smith, Edwards & Co. store. There were mills on both sides of the creek. Dearing was to repair one mill for $150. White was to pay him in cattle and hogs and at the store. Dearing would not start the work until he saw Williams. He then did the work. He was paid several cows and store goods. There was a good many hands working on the dam. Samuel Williams was starting a trip to the south and he told his hands to do with as little goods as they could. White had run him in debt a great amount at Smith, Edwards & Co. where he owed them the last hard dime he had. He planned when he returned to have goods of his own to pay off the debt White incurred. 

Samuel Cross said he and his brother work at the Williams mills about $200 worth in 1842. He was paid some $40 or $50 in the store of Smith, Edwards. He got some $20 or $23 from the Williams and Divine store. Capps, John Godsey mentioned. George D. Foster said about the time that Samuel Williams was starting with his hogs in 1842 Alpheus Edwards, who was a clerk in the Smith, Edwards store, said he saw Samuel Williams in the streets of Chattanooga and asked him about orders from White to see if they were alright. Williams said he would pay $80 for fencing and if more was needed he would draw the orders himself. Edwards followed him down to the river and was talking about attaching the lumber.

Ignatius Hall, 55. George Williams purchased home place from Richard Waterhouse. 

John Haley. Williams had lands near Kelly's Ferry that had a coal bank. Lands were claimed by my father. I was working the coal bank, but I ceased working it until the matter could be settled between Williams and the heirs of my father. 

William Foster, 44. Supporting the two families and the slaves and the livestock in the G&S Partnership. He was in possession of the home tract of land at the time of his brother's death. Afterward, he took a second wife and took her to his home, having divorced his first wife, a sister of complainant Elizabeth under circumstances which probably dissatisfied her. But he never mistreated her in any way or denied her any right she was entitled to. She was aware that the property was partnership property. After death of George W. Williams, Samuel Williams did not appropriate the slaves for his own use, but for the support of both families. 

Elizabeth was put off with the negro woman Jinny and boy Albert and some three or four cows. The cows died except for one. At the sale she purchased some corn and bacon, which was soon exhausted. She was turned out of her home and out of doors and to penury with her two infant children by the fraudulent acts and doings of Samuel Williams.  

Samuel Williams was living on the home place before the death of George W. Williams. I was at the store house of Williams, Whiteside & Co. on Sunday in August of 1840 when some of Williams' hands who at the time were working on a turnpike road, they wished some goods in payment of their labor. Mr. Edwards, who was then a partner in the concern and the clerk of the House was unwell I measured and weighed goods for the hands myself. 

George D. Foster deposition. George W. Williams had drove hogs before. Left on the farm at the time of his death were hogs, horses, cattle, negroes, household furniture, bees, farming tools, one wagon and corn. There was something like seven or eight negroes. I don't know the amount of property or stock. I would suppose the two negro men to be worth ten dollars a month. There are two women worth about six dollars a month. The rest are children. Two of them would be worth about four dollars a month. Any less ones would not be worth their victuals. Of the 50-acre tract, I reckon about 30 acres is bottom and about 20 acres is upland. It is common bottom and common upland. Samuel Williams now lives there. George W. came from Alabama to live with his father. George W. Sr. was living there when I came to the country. George W. Jr. may have been there then. He farmed there with the old man until a year or two before the old man died. He went to merchandising in the valley above where a live for awhile, not as long as a year I think when he moved his goods back into the house where his father lived and remained there until the partnership was formed. George Sr. had an old negro woman and two small boys that he let Richard Waterhouse have after the death of Richard G. Waterhouse. It was an over payment that was to go to Waterhouse to go toward paying for the land that Bud Taylor or some other of the connection had bought from Waterhouse. There was a portion of the negroes I was acquainted with and a portion I did not know much about. The old man built the house. It appeared to be built under his direction. The labor that was done there seemed to be under the old man's direction. There has been some land cleared and some stables built since the old man died. I don't think the house and yard and well are in as good a repair as when the old man was living. The stables are such as common country farmers have to keep their horses in. The first time I ever saw George W. he was living in Alabama and had come up to see his father. The next acquaintance I had with him he had come up and was living with his father on the farm. I think farming was his chief occupation. It was five or six years from the time I was acquainted with him that the partnership was formed. As well as I recollect, the partnership was formed in 1834. Samuel Williams lives there now. I have visited him there and heard him call it his place. I think I saw the widow of George W. Williams and her family at the house a year after his death. Afterward, they lived in a house nearly west of Chattanooga.

Abel Beason. I was at one time a clerk for G&S Williams. I have been at the house visiting Samuel Williams and heard him call it his home. G&S Williams was concerned with a store in Lookout Valley with Silas Williams, in which James A. Whiteside had no interest. I left home in the fall of 1840 and returned in the spring of 1841. When I returned the firm of Williams & Whiteside was dissolved. When I came home G&S Williams was doing business. They both were engaged in it at the time they sold out to Capt. Long in the spring of 1841. The goods while Whiteside was a partner were purchased in New York with most purchased on credit. Silas Williams drove some cattle to market. He herded them on Raccoon Mountain opposite Trenton, Dade County, Ga. Silas mainly purchased the cattle by debts due him.

John P. Long.  My first visit to Ross's Landing was about August 1835. The Williams had goods there in partnership. They continued in partnership in goods until the summer of 1841. A portion of the time they had other partners in the concern. They sold out to me in 1841.The stock of goods amounted to $4,700. I paid about $1,000 down. I made a note to James A. Whiteside for $2,400 or $2,500. At the Williams sale the negroes were all there except for a woman and perhaps her child. They were bid off for the widow. One of the negro men (Paddy) I should judge to be about 30 years old and said to be in good health. The other (Bob) was somewhat older and appeared to be in bad health. One of the women (Eliza) seemed to be about 25 years old and had the appearance of good health. The balance I do not recollect about. I would think that they sold for very fair prices.The articles for the widow were approved before hand and consisted of household items and articles such as she wanted. The land was sold in the city of Chattanooga on Market Street near the post office.

James S. Edwards. James A. Whiteside told me he had sold out his interest to George and Samuel Williams for $500, that he had concluded to do so rather than be bothered, that it would be a very troublesome business to settle up. George Williams told me he had bought out Whiteside and gave him $600 for his interest. He said he and Samuel were to pay the debts of the firm. I also agreed and took the same amount. There was a good deal owing, but what amount I am not able to state. There were books left that showed the amount of accounts owed the firm and went into the hands of George and Samuel Williams.    

John Haley, 43. Samuel Williams informed me he had received a large sum of money to invest in land. Colonel James A. Whiteside drew a bond for the land, and I signed and Charles Haley signed. During the partnership I lived about five miles from G.W. Williams and about nine miles from Samuel Williams. There was a coal bank near Kelly's Ferry that the heirs of my father claimed. I was working there and received notice from Samuel Williams that he claimed the land. I quit working there until it could be settled.  

James Ford, 54, witness. I had a blacksmith shop and had made him (George W. Williams) some plows. He said charge them to him as he kept the home place separate from the firm.

Witness. George W. Williams married over a year after his father's death. He was farming and merchandizing and raising stock.   

William Ford, 44, and D.F. Cocke, 30. I was at the G.W. Williams residence when there was to have been a sale of two or three negroes and other property. I went there for the purpose of purchasing a negro or two, and, owing to Mr. Berry's not being willing to let Samuel Williams purchase the property without paying the money, he would not let the property be sold. Samuel Williams said he had paid a good bit of the firm's debts and he felt if this property was sold it would not bring its full value.

Alexander Kelly, 44. I was acquainted with George W. Williams and George the father. G.W. lived with his father. They lived in Jackson County, Ala., until about or after the death of the old man. By they I mean the balance of George W. Williams' children. G.W. was merchandizing and doing tolerably well at the time of his father's death. I don't know when Samuel Williams moved from Alabama to Tennessee. I suppose between 1830 and 1835. When Samuel Williams moved here, the property included hogs, cattle, dry goods. Silas Williams was involved in selling and buying cattle. I recollect one drove of cattle to market by Silas Williams, but I do not recollect the year. I lived about 12 miles from him. Him and me was very intimately acquainted. The trade from the lower end of the county was mainly done with Col. Oats and me, and when G.W. Williams first went to lay in goods he came and stayed all night and told us his business and he was cautioned about merchandizing. He told us his circumstances and how he had to make the payment. If I remember right, Col. Oats or me, or perhaps both, loaned him some money, which we did do a few times. I think we gave him a few lines to Nashville. G.W. Williams bought his first goods on credit, but I suppose he was able to pay when due. I have heard G.W. Williams say that the right of the home place was in him and as it was his residence he did not have it in the partnership. He wanted to keep it clear for him and his family to live there as long as they lived.

Ignatius Hall. At the sale, John P. Long was the principal bidder and bought the principle part of the property. My understanding was that he was bidding for the widow.   

Thomas Crutchfield, 48. I advanced $1,200. The contract was made by Caloway or Jarnagin. I was asked to draw the note for $1,400 and to pay $1,200, which I done. 

Benjamin Ford, 54. All I know on home place was what I heard G.W. Williams say. I had a blacksmith shop and had made him some plows. I asked him when he came for the plows if I must charge them to him or the firm. He said he kept the home farm to his own use. He further said that other work must be charged to the firm. I lived four miles away. 

James Berry, 26 or 56?. Clerk and Master of Chancery Court, Cleveland. At first sale, attorney Whiteside advised Samuel Williams not to do it.There were some moneyed people there who wanted the sale to go forward. At the second sale date, John P. Long made the only bid for the widow. No one else bid on any of the property except perhaps for some small articles. I thought the property was bid off at a very fair price. Samuel Williams told me he wanted the property sold as soon after the court made the order of sale as I could.

William Biggs, 50. I went to the sale. When the sale started it was talked of in the crowd that some individual was going to bid on all the property for the widow. I was told the property was to be sold on a credit and that is why I did not bid. I saw no valuable property sold but what was understood to be for the widow and the crowd seemed to understand it in the same way. There was some property we did not wish to purchase, and the crowd seemed to take no interest in the sale.

Jesse G. Blackwell, 27. Samuel Williams paid debts of G&S Williams. Around $1,100. He used about $6,000 of the effects of G&S Williams in paying off the debts. I think he has paid about $8,000 of the firm's debts. Samuel Williams made bills of exchange payable at the Union Bank of Maryland of Baltimore, which bills were discounted at the Branch Bank of Tennessee at Athens. The proceeds of those bills were used in the purchase of livestock, such as hogs and cattle, which were driven to market. The profits made were invariably applied to the debts of G&S Williams. Samuel Williams in some cases has given his individual note to pay the debts. And by his untiring exertions he has paid many debts in different ways. Almost every trade made between Samuel Williams and John Divine.I think Samuel Williams has bought some livestock with debts due to the late firm of Williams & Oxley, but I am not positive as to Williams and Divine. The amount discounted was many thousands of dollars. The most of the bills were discounted at the branch of the State Bank of Tennessee of Athens. One I recollect was discounted in the Planters Bank and one was at the Union Bank at Nashville. 

I recollect of Samuel Williams paying debt to George Elliott of Alabama of about $100, Elias Wilburn about $400, Rector Preston near $50, R. Henderson attorney for either Peck or Kelly over $100, John Sappington over $100, the administrator of James Eaton, dec. near $100, Berry Brown, Green H. Pryor about $1,300, and many others made at different times and different places. 

John Johnson, 49. My understanding was that the home place was the individual property of G.W. Jr. I was present when they settled their partnership business - G.W., Samuel and Silas. Silas kept all his land, his horses and his stock cattle. G.W. and Samuel got his drove cattle and his store books and notes and paid his county debts. I became acquainted with them in 1838 or 1839. I think Mr. Foster and Mr. Beason were at the settlement. Thomas Oxley may have been also. They took the cattle home for the winter and in the spring put them on the mountain and in the summer drove them to market.   

John Vail, 59. I sold one-half of the Missionary Tract on South Chickamauga Creek to G.W. and Samuel Williams for $1,200. There has been some profit from the mills, but I do not know how much. 

Hampton Thompson, 42. I heard G.W. say that the tract he lived on was his. Samuel Williams made no reply that I remember. It was 14 or 15 years ago before G.W. and Samuel went into partnership and put up their store at Chattanooga, then called Ross's Landing. G.W. said he would have to take his brother Samuel into partnership because he was not able to work.

Thomas J. Park. I along with William B. Wafford and John M. McAfee had some interest in some Williams lands. We made Peter Sivley our agent.  

Jeremiah Fryar. Land values down in 1844 due to doubts about the railroad being completed or at least stopped. I had an understanding that George and Samuel Williams were full partners in everything they had. George said he had a debt in Nashville and that Samuel had sold his land in Alabama for $1,100 and that would help with the debt. I purchased 80 acres from Samuel Williams after the death of George. I think he got it from Judge Hooke. He got the land in exchange for the brick storehouse. I bought a slave from Samuel Williams named Soos. She was 12 or 13. I paid $400 for her. I think the money went to pay a debt. I sold Soos to Samuel Williams and I think he sold him to a man named Cross in Alabama. I lived about a mile from the Williams homeplace. I never heard any complaints from her or others after she left the homeplace. There were some small buildings a short distance from the new cabins, but I do not know if she ever lived in them. The buildings were not of much value. About 15 acres were cleared. I am personally friendly to the Williams the whole time and understand their business pretty well, having dealt with them a good deal. I understand from Silas that they paid the other heirs for their shares of the Williams lands. I understand that George Sr. got into a close place - something about a Negro - and because of that he had the title made out to George. This I learned from Silas. I understood that G.W. was to hold the land for all the heirs jointly. I do not know for what amount the brick house in Chattanooga owned by G&S Williams was sold. Refers to the place that came to be called Chattanooga.   

William H. Stringer. I was tax collector for Hamilton County in 1834. G.W. had 120 acres of common land and 668 acres of school land. None listed for Samuel Williams. G.W. and Samuel commenced business together in 1832 or 1833. I settled an account with G&S Williams for dealings in the store at Chattanooga. Afterward, G.W. Williams presented an individual account due to him for articles I had got for old man Smith down at the home place, which account I paid. It was for salt, sugar and some small fancy articles. It was around November 1837. 

Deposition of Davis, Samuel Williams brother in law. We were brothers in law. Each of them married my sisters. They went into partnership in the fall of 1832 I think. In the spring of 1834 in the last of February or the first of March Samuel Williams came to Jackson County, Alabama after some money that his land had sold for. 

Sivley. I was acquainted with the old man. I heard him say that the home place was G.W.'s. That he had bought a place in Alabama and given to Samuel Williams. And he bought another place on the Tennessee River for Silas. It was bought from John Gwinn. Another place was to be bought for Jesse.

Alfred M. Rogers. Part of the children lived in Alabama, part here. There was one girl.The old man had some hogs, a horse or horses, some farming utensils.  

Col. James A. Whiteside. March 1844. I became acquainted with G.W. and Samuel Williams in 1837. In 1838, I moved from Bledsoe County to Ross's Landing (now Chattanooga). They were in business as merchants and general partners in trading. I lived near them and that year I think entered in partnership with them as merchants and traders and in the purchase of occupancy rights and preferences of entry, and in the entry of lands in the Ocoee District. I was also their partner in the following year in the purchase and sale of stock cattle taken to the Virginia market, and also for one or two subsequent years. Our business was extensive and complicated, and I was in almost constant intercourse with them up to the time of our dissolution and settlement, and indeed up to the time of the death of G.W. and since his death with Samuel Williams up to the present time. 

George W Williams very often gave me a history of his early life and commencement in business and of the motives for and manner of joining Samuel Williams in business. He has very often told me of his embarrassment in a small mercantile business which he was doing before the partnership, of the efforts of other merchants to break him down (particularly the Rawlings), and of his going to Alabama where Samuel resided and inducing him to sell his land for money, drive up his stock and join him in business at Ross's Landing - a new trading place just opening to importance on the borders of the Cherokee Nation and near the portion which was being rapidly settled by Georgians from the lower country. As well as I recollect the amount contributed by Samuel was stated by George to be a little over $1,000 - proceeds of his land sale, stock mostly investable for market worth some five or six hundred dollars and his household effects, for George often said to me that one of them did not own a spoon. 

George declared to me the home place to be joint property belonging to him and Samuel, that it was cultivated and managed on their joint account with their joint forces, and that one had as much control of the place as the other, and that all its proceeds were treated and used as joint property. Some months before George died, say in the latter part of 1841 or the beginning of 1842, G&S Williams sold their stock of goods at Chattanooga and Samuel went with his family to the home plantation, and resided in the house with his brother, and continued to reside there up to and after George's death. Samuel was as fully and completely in possession as George was, and indeed it was understood between them at the time, as I was told by George that he was to do most of their distant trading and business, such as stock trading.  

Samuel tried to settle with Silas, but could not, but George had arranged it and could manage him. I told Samuel and he acquiesed to George's wish, and in a day or two he went and made the settlement (about Silas' share of the home place). He laughed about it and recapitulated the difficulty he and Samuel had with Silas.  

 George said he had commenced on nothing, got his goods on a credit and got them scattered out in the country on credit so that he could get little for them and that Sam's money saved him. He had not been doing business at Ross's Landing but on the north side of the river near the mountain. But when Samuel came they started a small trading establishment at Ross's Landing.

As to who made the contract with Hargrove, Carter and Williams, I cannot inform you as it was made before I had any information of it. But if a contract with Carter, Boyce and Hines is aluded to for the investment on their account of $20,000 in Ocoee and other lands, I made it myself in December 1838. Williams was to advance one-third of the money, Carter one-third and Hargrove one-third. I also had an interest.Samuel was representing George's interest. This agreement related to the Cherokee or Ocoee lands. The objective was to operate in river lands and in land contemplated to be near the terminus of the Western and Atlantic Railroad of Georgia on the Tennessee River. In the spring or summer of 1838, the Williams informed me (George first) of their contract with Hargrove and Carter. They desired my services in arranging their land papers. They were both active men but illiterate and did their business generally in a very confused, disorderly and unsystematic manner. I found their transfers defective and their description of land, in most cases, erroneous. And having made out a table of their purchases of occupation, I set about correcting their transfers and descriptions of land. While I was doing go, they proposed that I take an interest with them, and we agreed that I should take one-third of their third under the article with Hargrove and Carter, and pay one-third of the money. This let me into the purchases which they had previously made and I was in like manner and to the same extent to be interested in subsequent acquisitions. I was also to take a partnership with them in their store. And for my services then performed and afterwards in relation to the land was to be paid and afterwards was paid $600. 

From the time I became connected with them, I kept the accounts of this land, running through the purchases of occupation, entries of land, and rendering account to distant partners. I risk nothing in saying that I understood G&S Williams' interest in these lands and what they were composed better than they did themselves. Before George Williams died, a settlement took place in connection with this land with Carter and with Hargrove. 

These lands we're taken in 1838 and 1839 and, by the time it became necessary to close the partnership business of G&S Williams, from a suspension of the work on the Railroad and a distrust of it ever being renewed and also by the dreadful sickness which had scourged the country where these lands lay, the price of them became so depressed that considering their scattered and complicated condition, they (I mean G&S Williams') interest would scarcely have sold for anything. I went myself to the South and appealed to the partners of Williams to purchase the interest, but they refused to do so at any price. And in being asked said they would not give 50 cents on the original cost. Under a hope that this investment would still turn out well, Samuel Williams desired to hold on to it and to save to his brother's children their part if possible. It might turn out a fortune. The original investment had yielded no funds - the proceeds of a first sale having been reinvested.

Samuel was a resident of Ross's Landing at the setting up of the Ocoee District. All that I remember that they held out of the partnership was a lot bought of Rhea and Ross and one half of my own lot at Chattanooga. At a land sale, we bought it. If Samuel Williams had not bought it I do not believe it would have brought one-fourth of its original cost. 

In December of 1839 an agreement was reached to invest in coal lands in Marion County. It was between myself and Samuel Williams of one part and Farish Carter, Ker Boyce and Richard K. Hines of the second part. They were to advance $20,000 and more later if it was thought advisable. They advanced $20,000 first in bank notes of Georgia not receivable at our land office which were returned and they drew Bills of Exchange in New York for the amount and Samuel Williams had them discounted at the branch Bank of Tennessee at Athens. The proceeds went into the possession of the Williams' - mostly into George's hands I think for he was generally the most active businessman. The coal lands were bought from John Haley and placed in the Hines Company account. When George Williams died on Aug. 9, 1842, Col. Carter and Ker Boyce were at Chattanooga to close the business. On the 11th or 12th, Samuel Williams and myself made a deed to Col. Carter.   

They advanced $20,000 first in bank notes of Georgia not receivable at our land office which were returned and they drew Bills of Exchange in New York for the amount and Samuel Williams had them discounted at the branch Bank of Tennessee at Athens. The proceeds went into the possession of the Williams - mostly into George's hands I think for he was generally in all their business the most active businessman and dealt in this other things as to their joint business.

I do not believe these lands whether in small undivided interests or in whole tracts as surveyed or surveyed into quarter sections and fractions would have sold for half the amount of the cost. I frequently endeavored to sound the market and indeed could find none. I did so on the occasion of the Williams sale, endeavoring to induce the Southern Partners to purchase the Williams interest, but could not get them to do so. They had no interest to buy at any price. They seemed to look on their investments in these lands as almost a total loss and would not purchase any more. Recently, since an improvement in the health of the county which is taking place and since the resumption of work on the Rail Road, these lands and lots have greatly appreciated in value and I would say are now worth more than the original cost of preferences and entry money and interest on it.

The claims of two and a half occupant interests in one of the 80-acre fractions in Chattanooga in which the Williams had an interest of two ninths was disputed by adverse claimants in part and others called into question the validity of some of the claims. There were about 20 original occupants (I cannot undertake to name them) who still held their equitable claims or had assigned them to others. A majority of the occupants or their assignees had transferred their claims to R.A. Ramsey, A.S. Lenoir and A. Kennedy to be held in trust for them to lay off in town lots, sell and account for the proceeds. The Williams claims had been so transferred. Other occupants did not transfer and were litigating with Kennedy and his associates and the other occupants. Other embarrassment existed as to this tract of land and I could not well see how it could be brought to sale under a decree so as to get out G&S Williams' interest. Nor can I get see any better way than to operate on the Williams claims as it stands in setting up their partnership business. This claim might turn out to be worth nothing or it might become valuable. 

 They had all confidence in each other in their business transactions. There was no distrust of each other and no occasion for it because one could not defraud the other, everything being in common between them as regarded property, money or anything of value. And beside they were as intimate and confiding as I ever knew two brothers and I am certain each would have trusted the other for everything under all circumstances.

I had a partnership for two seasons in buying and driving beef cattle to the Virginia Market commencing in the year 1839 to about $23,000 or $24,000 and for the year 1840 less. This was under an agreement extending only to the cattle operation. I had another mercantile partnership with them commencing in the year 1838 or the first part of 1839 and terminating in 1841. 1 had also with them the connection in land operations which I've explained. Our dealings and those in which we were principal actors during that time amounted to as much as $100,000. I had frequent settlements with them about the cattle trading and much more frequently in relation to our land dealings in order to keep all things right in such complicated transactions. My settlements were almost universally made with George or with his own immediate supervision for he always appeared to understand business better than Samuel and would keep himself advised of all that was going on touching his interest. In making such settlements he very often said to me that if a partnership was like his and his brothers that he could have no trouble and would explain the advantages of such a partnership.The 44th and 45th belonged to the Hines Company, Hargrove Company and Park Company. The 46th and 47th were the same but also to John Bridgman, who has since died. The 48th and 49th belonged to the Hargrove Company. The 50th to the 52nd belonged to the Hargrove Company. And similarly on down to the 62nd tract. The Hines Company and Hargrove Company have sought to consolidate their holdings.

They were uneducated men and without any of the proper qualifications of merchants. Neither of them could keep books properly, nor did either of them know when books were properly kept. They had no order, system, or regularity in their mercantile business. And, when fairly into it, could not from their mode of business tell their actual condition so loosely and negligently did they conduct it and permit it to become blended with all their other transactions.  

Within a few days on the cattle drive George took sick and died. I was going to start to the north soon and Samuel implored me to fall in with Silas in Virginia, furnish him expense money, inform him of George's death, aid in selling the cattle and go to Baltimore and pay over the proceeds of the sale on the debts. George Williams had no money when he died and Samuel had none to furnish me when I started about the 15th of August. I went on through Washington City, passed over to Winchester in the Valley of Virginia and returned about 100 miles where I met Silas in the neighborhood of Staunton. I furnished some expense money of my own and was reimbursed out of the sale of the cattle so I consider I may safely say G&S Williams had no money at the time of George's death. A good many of the cattle which they drove were bought on credit and afterwards paid for by Samuel. I wrote up the settlement between Samuel and Silas regarding the cattle on Sept. 19, 1842.

John Starling. I think it has been about 21 years last winter since I first became acquainted with George W. Williams. I worked at the home place. I thought it belonged to the old man and George Williams. I don't know of any buildings being done after I went there. There was some land cleared after I went there which the old man paid for. There was a house weatherboarded after I went there, which was also paid for by the old man. George and the old man lived together about three years after I went to it and before the old man died. The first year I went there young George and I worked together in the crops. I then went off and, while I was gone, there was goods bought and George traded in them and continued trading in them until the old man died and after his death. I came back a while before Christmas and the old man's death. I think it was the next fall when Samuel come up. I think George bought about 40 head of cattle for market, also about 40 pork hogs. G.W. and Samuel turned all their stock together and seemed to treat it all as one. I heard G.W. say that Samuel sold his land in Alabama for $1,100. He said since then that Samuel had helped him considerably in getting out of debt. He spoke well of Samuel and never would forsake him. George did not have near as much stock as Samuel did. The way I understood it they were in partnership in everything in their possession. I never heard any distinction in the home place or anything else. George Sr. did not have a great deal of property beside the home place. He had some cattle and hogs, and young George carried off one small drove of hogs for the old man before he died. The old man showed me a parcel of silver, for how much I don't know, which he said George had brought back for the hogs. The merchandise goods were bought after George took the hogs off. George bought his goods in the fall and winter and the old man died the following February. He worked on the farm until he got the goods and then he attended to them. Silas lived with the old man part of the time. I heard George say that he and Samuel were to give their brothers and sisters $150. 

I lived one year on the north side of the Tennessee River near where Chattanooga now is. After the crop was laid by, I went back to the Williams home place. They had about 35 acres of cleared land when I worked there. They used to rent land as high as three barrels of corn an acre. I went with George when he took a drove of cattle to Virginia.

George bought the slave Bob there in the settlement where he lived. He was bought from a man named Johnson. 

They bought a tract from Lusk that was known as the Freeman place. One tract the old man bought I heard say that he bought it for his son, Silas Williams. 

Archibald Brown, 36. I became acquainted with George Sr. in the spring of 1830. I worked a good deal on the farm, minding stock. George said he had no more interest in the estate than any of the other heirs. At the time Samuel Williams moved here I was living in Marion County. Before that I was living in Hamilton County. I don't think George had but two horses. He had a small lot of cattle and hogs. George did buy up hogs in Marion, Hamilton and Lookout Valley before Samuel came up. The partnership was formed in 1833. In 1832, about November, a drove of hogs was taken to Georgia. There were between 180 and 200 hogs. 

Major John Cowart, 46. I have been acquainted with Samuel and George Williams 12 or 15 years, with Mrs. Williams 10 or 11 years. Mrs. Williams was frequently at my house and requested me to act for her children, which I refused to do, thinking I might move from the country. I never moved to Chattanooga, though I live on the north side of the Tennessee River and about four miles from the Williams. Samuel Williams lived part of the time at Chattanooga. I have been frequently in their store at Chattanooga, though I was not very well acquainted with their business. In the latter part of 1837 and the year 1838, I did see them most every day as they crossed at my ferry by the year, and I come to Chattanooga about them times nearly every day. My understanding has always been that the Negroes, stock and hogs and the home place were partnership property, though I do not recollect whether Samuel was living at the home place at the time George Williams died. When either George or Samuel mentioned the storck or other property on the farm, or at the store they always spoke of it as partnership property. I know they both with their families lived in the same house together. There was but one house on the property, though there were some small cabins that were used as Negro houses. Mrs. Williams did seem to have the fullest confidence that Samuel Williams would do her and her children justice. Samuel Williams paid me $50 for an occupant claim and also $225 for my interest in the little island opposite the Town Bluff.   

Jesse Blackwell, 27. I once heard George say that himself and Samuel Williams were about to settle their business with their mercantile partners and that they perhaps would be able to make themselves safe by taking all the effects of the firm Williams, Whiteside & Co., Williams & Oxley, and S. Williams & Bro. and make collections in young stock and rear them upon their farm at home as they designed making some improvements upon it and unite their joint services upon that place which, in his opinion, would be the only way they could save themselves as they were much ---."

George remarked to me that it was distinctly true, and known to the World, that he nor Samuel had any individual property, but that everything they had, from a clod of Earth up to the spoons upon their shelves were partnership property. And in the conversation George said that Samuel owned one-half of everything used by his family and he owned one-half of everything used by Samuel's family for six years before that time, and that he had the same interests in everything used by Samuel's family - although there was no instrument of writing between them. At divers time, from 1835 up to his death, George spoke of the home place being joint property.

I think Leonard Gibbons and Leonard Thompson were present when we had one conversation - at least a portion of the time. It was about eight or nine months before the death of George Williams. 

I was familiar with George and Samuel Williams from the summer of 1835 up to the death of George Williams. And I think I was as well acquainted with their partnership transactions during that time as any person not particularly connected with them in business. And I also think I have the right of knowing much of their business soon after the death of George. 

A short time after the death of George Williams I made a schedule of the personal partnership effects of G&S Williams, and think I found in notes and accounts to the amount of about $9,000 (owing to the firm). Nine or 10 Negroes, eight head of horses, and much other miscellaneous property such as hogs, cattle and farming tools. I think about $7,000 or $8,000 might have been considered good, and the balance was insolvent persons. 

I was never employed or considered as a clerk for G&S Williams during the lifetime of George Williams, though I frequently transacted business for them. Soon after the death of George, Samuel employed me as a clerk and general agent for the purpose of winding up the business of G&S Williams, and from the first of December 1842 to the first of February 1843, the most of my time was employed in selling goods, which goods Samuel Williams was interested in. The hogs were sold to different men, all I think living at Harrisburg, except a few sales made to persons in Augusta, Ga. I recollect distinctly of selling hogs to Morgan Buchn, Thomas Stackel, Keeser Floyd, Thomas John McKissick, George Weigh and others. The hogs were sold for cash. Most of these were owned by G&S Williams before the death of George. Some of the hogs were bought by Samuel Williams after the death of George and but a few days before the drove was started. This purchase amounted to something like $140 for which Samuel Williams gave his note with Silas Williams security, which note passed through other hands and was finally paid by John L. Divine with the effects of Williams & Divine in the spring of 1843 and perhaps in the month of June. And the amount of the payment was charged to the concern of G&S Williams. And by my own instruction in consequence of my knowing that the hogs for which this note was given was sold as the hogs of G&S Williams. And the proceeds of the sale of those hogs used by Samuel as the funds of G&S Williams in discharging the debts of that concern. No part of this drove of hogs was owned by Williams & Divine. This I state partially from the declaration of Samuel, but mostly by my own knowledge. 

They were taken to the Virginia market in 1843 by John L. Divine. The drove of cattle was purchased from divers persons. Some were bought from Samuel Farris. Joseph Johnson, Winfield Mann, Campbell Walling, John Tucker and divers other persons.

I know that one of the Negro women is much diseased and has been for several years - both her and her family of children. 

I had a conversation with George Williams at the Rail Road office. I believe Samuel Williams was at home at the time cutting briars. He told me several days later that he had done nothing else for the past week. 

Samuel Williams has paid many of the debts of G&S Williams since the death of George. The amount paid by Samuel is near $15,000. Including cost and other necessary expenses, I think the amount is near $16,000. The most of his time has been employed in settling the business of G&S Williams since the death of George. He has suffered many privations and undergone much labor for the benefit of that concern.

Elijah Thurman. I became acquainted with George W. Williams in 1831 and with Samuel Williams in 1833. I lived about three miles from them. I have heard them both talking divers places and divers times, and both said that everything they had in the world was partnership property, and they both said they lived out of a common stock and no accounts were kept between them. That if ever they did dissolve partnership, everything was to be divided equally without any reservation to one more than the other. I have probably every year heard them speak of their partnership until George died. The last time I heard George speak of it was when he was gathering their last drove of cattle. I rode some distance with him. I heard George speak of the partnership between them oftener than I ever did Samuel. George told me he had known men who kept no accounts, who had succeeded better than any he ever knew. And that was the reason he done business in that way.     

Silas Williams was complaining that George and Samuel were not going to pay him what was right for the home place. George said they had to pay him more than what was right or go to law with him. This was after the settlement had taken place. George said it was all settled up satisfactorily now. George said there would be no difficulty with Jesse about it - that Jesse was disposed to do what was right about it.

When Samuel Williams moved to Hamilton County he lived at the home place, and it is my recollection it was in the year 1833. George said Samuel brought with him $11,000 or $12,000 from selling his land in Alabama and all his stock of cattle and hogs. A portion of the stock of G&S Williams was kept on the island, a portion on the mountain and a portion on the home place, which lies close to the mountain, and a portion over the river.  

I would not have given Waterhouse more than $1,000 for the home place. 

John Baker, 43. George W. Williams the ancestor bought the home place from Waterhouse and paid for it. When he became in bad health, he told his son to go see Waterhouse and get the deed to the land he had purchased made to him (George Jr.), which was done. He instructed George to convey to his brothers and sisters equal portions of the land. George Williams paid me $150 in 1832, I think in May. It was for my wife's interest in the home place. George paid me $140 in 1832 and Samuel paid me $10 more after they went into partnership. He borrowed it from a man named Lusk. I gave George a receipt and both me and my wife, Polly, subscribed to it. George Williams had been merchandising prior to 1833. Samuel Williams was living in Jackson County, Ala., where he had a small farm. George W. had become much embarrassed in his pecuniary affairs. He went down in 1833 to Jackson County and proposed a partnership to me and Samuel Williams in business generally such as hogs, cattle, farming and merchandising. I declined to go into business with him, but Samuel agreed to do so. They were in partnership generally in everything, and neither one of them was to hold any property, either real or personal, separate, but everything was to be in partnership. Samuel Williams sold his farm in Alabama for $11,000, and that was used for the payment of George's individual liabilities in Tennessee. George told me he owed between $900 and $1,000 that he could not pay without help. They both told me that the debts of George had to be paid before they could go into business. Silas and Jesse were not of age when the partnership was formed. They were paid for their part in the home place after the partnership was formed. Silas Williams is dead. Jesse Williams is in Arkansas. George Sr. bought 100 acres or 120 acres from Waterhouse. I do not know the cost of it. George Sr. was frequently backwards and forwards between Alabama and Hamilton County. George Sr. bought a tract on the river, but it was also claimed by Silas. 

I lived 12 miles from George Sr. in Alabama. The boys was all left there together and my wife also. Samuel Williams married in Alabama and lived there some time, but never got any of his father's property while there to my knowledge. Samuel Williams lived with his mother in Alabama and was raised I supposed by the assistance of the property left in Alabama. After Samuel Williams married, he never got any benefit of the land that his father had in Alabama. 

George was not married at the time his father died.

Nancy Gwinn, 30. Silas had a wife, Nancy, who was afterward Nancy Gwinn. I have been acquainted with the Williams all my life. A settlement was made in Alabama in 1841. Silas, my husband, was to have the cattle, horses and hogs. Samuel and George was to have the Negro woman, the goods there were on hand, and the firm's debt. I have heard that they paid to Silas his interest in the home place by a tract of land of 80 acres now belonging to Major Cowart by Silas paying back his $150. The other heirs, John Baker and Henry Edwards, were paid $150 each. I cannot tell what was paid to Jesse. We moved up from Alabama after George W. Sr. died. We stayed a short time at George Williams. When we went to housekeeping we lived opposite to Chattanooga, the place now owned by Major Cowart. George moved to Lookout Valley and sold goods where Esq. Parker now lives.   

Deposition. I was in the store house of Williams & Whiteside & Co. one Sunday in August of 1840 when some of Williams' hands who were at that time working on a turnpike road said they wished some goods in payment for their labor. Mr. Edwards, who was then a partner in the concern and the acting clerk, was unwell, so I measured and weighed the goods for the hands myself. 

Samuel Williams Family Helped Preserve Tennessee River Gorge; Home Place By The River Became A Cement Factory

After the Civil War, the once-widespread holdings of Samuel Williams shrank to the home place and a few hundred acres. His surviving children included Matt who married Jennie Cowart, a daughter of John Cowart. Elizabeth the oldest daughter, who had married John L. Divine, had died in 1857. Two years later, Divine married Rachel James. Mary married Abner C. Carroll. Matt Williams lived in Hill City as did his sisters, Mary Carroll, Allie Hampton and Anna Bell.

Children by the second wife of Samuel Williams included Allie who married Frederick Thomas Hampton at the Williams home on December 18, 1869. The ceremony was performed by the Rev. Thomas H. McCallie. Hampton, a native of Virginia, came to Chattanooga in 1869 as the engineer in charge of dredging the Tennessee River. He became city engineer and was instrumental in developing North Chattanooga. The site of the Heritage Landing development was formerly part of the Hampton farm. Allie was named for the home state of Samuel Williams. In 1870, the Hamptons were living at the Williams place as was William Standifer, who had helped Samuel Williams capture James Andrews. 

Anne Williams married James S. Bell, a son of the early Hamilton County land investor David Newton Bell. Bell Avenue in North Chattanooga was named for James S. Bell.

The Williams family always had close ties to the Indians, and many of the children of Samuel Williams went West. Sons Skelton, Samuel L., William S. and George and daughter Josephine went across the Mississippi. The Browns, Skelton and Sam were among those moving to Purcell, Okla. William S. was a stockman in New Mexico. George Forrest also settled in New Mexico. 

Samuel Williams never was able to recoup financially after the blow that was dealt him by the war. He also suffered greatly with his eyes after the war, and he did not go to court at Harrison as he had before. He concentrated on farming and was one of the first in town to purchase the new Kingsland, Ferguson and Company corn shucker, sheller and sacker. But he could not resist speculation entirely and invested in a new steam ferry near Market Street. This ferry soon sank, taking with it over $2,000 of Samuel Williams' money.

In 1879, when he was 72, he was sitting on a fence and, when he attempted to leap down, his left boot heel became entangled in the rails. He was thrown forward, breaking his right leg. It had to be amputated by Dr. M.M. Hope.

Samuel William was at Purcell, Okla.,visiting some of his children, when he died April 19, 1898. He was age 91, one month and four days. The funeral was at the Centenary Methodist Church on E. Eighth Street at 10 o'clock in the morning. The funeral sermon was delivered by the Rev. Thomas McCallie, assisted by the Rev. J.M. Carter of the Hill City Methodist Church. Pallbearers were A.M. Johnson, Tomlinson Fort, Dr. P.D. Sims, L.M. Clark, O.S. Green, Dr. Lapsley Y. Green, Thomas Cowart, J.A. Caldwell, Charles Whiteside, M.B. Long, D.P. Henderson, Lou L. Parham and John G. Rawlings. Immediately after the service the body of Samuel Williams was taken to the Forest Hills Cemetery in St. Elmo and buried beside his wife. Keturah, his wife of over 50 years, had died in 1893. Both chose Forest Hills, though there is a family burial plot by the river near Suck Creek.

The Hampton family continued farming the Williams lands, including Williams Island. Several farm families lived on the island through the early part of this century, but the island is now a state refuge. Many interesting Indian artifacts have been found on the island.

A preservation group aimed at protecting the majestic Tennessee River Gorge was founded in 1981 as the result of a dinner party at Adele Hampton’s house on Elder Mountain. Ms. Hampton remained a leading force in the Tennessee River Gorge Trust, which has protected over 17,000 acres of the Gorge's 27,000 acres. She was the wife of Dr. John Cantrell Hampton, a great-grandson of Samuel Williams. His parents were Foster and Virginia Hampton.

The historic mansion house of Samuel Williams was knocked down and replaced by a cement factory in the early 1920s. Where there once was the Williams manse with the splendid river and mountain view there became a fenced in pile of overgrown rubble. Nearby much of the former Williams land off Pineville Road, where there is a spectacular panorama of river, hills and mountains, is a maze of fences, cluttered industrial sites and cast off debris.    

Matt Williams lived in North Chattanooga for many years after the Civil War. His children included Frances, Norma, Anna, Allie H., Fred and Claude. The oldest three children were born during the turbulent Civil War years. Matt died in the fall of 1897 in the Indian Territory. 

Jesse Williams, younger brother of Samuel Williams, married Elizabeth Taylor. Their children were Ezekiel, Elizabeth, Malinda P., Ann M., George Washington, Samuel, Nancy and Tennessee who married James David Breckenridge.

Pleasant, one of the sons of George W. Williams Jr., married Lucy Foust, daughter of John and Matilda Hawley Foust. 

Calvin Williams, the other son of George W. Williams Jr., was born in 1836. He married Martha Bearly Easterly, who was born in Whitwell. They later moved to Benson, Ariz. Their children were Tennessee who married a York, Pleasant Samuel, Cynthia Elizabeth who married a Sipe, Martha who married a Dillman, Mary who married a Vance, Althea Bearl who married a Neagle, John Calvin, William Easterly and Jesse N. 

* * * * * * * * * *
 
A demolition project on Walnut Street unexpectedly turned up documents from Chattanooga's earliest days in March 2018.

 

Rob Bentley, a young man who has developed a love for Chattanooga's history, said he got a call from his friend Robert Parks about the discovery. His company, T. U. Parks, was doing the demolition and build-out of the former Elks Building at Walnut and Seventh and the small adjacent former Title Guaranty and Trust building.

Mr. Bentley, who works at the venerable Chattanooga firm of T.T. Wilson and Company, said, "When they were demoing the old vault the workers found the old documents. Robert went to look at them and a check made out to T.T. Wilson was on top of the pile so he called me to let me know what he had found. I asked him if they would stop the demo of the vaults so i could come take a  look at the papers.

"By the time I got to the job site some of the documents had already been thrown into the dumpster and destroyed. I loaded up all the documents I could save out of the dumpster and the ones not yet thrown away into my truck. I went home and organized them the best I could."

The cache included many other checks to pioneer Chattanooga businesses.

The retrieved items included some 800 pages of old documents related to a lawsuit against Chattanooga pioneer Samuel Williams. Some of the documents date to well before the Indian Removal and to the earliest days of Hamilton County.

Mr. Bentley later met with Sam Hall, who has been saving thousands of old Chattanooga photos and documents through his Deepzoom Chattanooga website (now ChattanoogaHistory.com).

Mr. Hall was excited about the find and began scanning the Williams legal documents. He scanned a large group that was saved before some were thrown in the dumpster. Those retrieved from the dumpster, he photographed. Portions of those documents had water damage so that about a fourth of each page cannot be read.

Some of the documents bear the signature of H.C. Beck, one of the founders of Title Guaranty and Trust. The title company later built a much-larger headquarters next door. Both are directly across from the County Courthouse.

Through the years, the upstairs portion of the initial Title Guaranty building was rented to attorneys, including Lewis Coleman, a protoge of Coca Cola bottling magnate Jack Lupton. It is believed that the papers that were located were from one of the attorneys renting the upstairs office or from the Title Guaranty operation itself.

Later the small building was merged with the Elks Building next door. The county named the pair of buildings the Mayfield Annex. The county in recent years vacated the buildings and they are being renovated by Lamp Post Properties, which has been restoring several downtown historic buildings for new uses.

The Williams documents can be read on ChattanoogaHistory.com. They are in two files - the undamaged scanned ones and the photographed pages with water damage. 

The links to the Williams papers on Sam Hall's website are here.

 

 

 


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