yesterday's tennessee

Yesterday's Tennessee


Part 2 - Posted on Prodigy by Beverly Koons
from the research notes of Francis Thomas)




Have a few minutes so here's another post from files.

Source #1: A HISTORY OF BENTON COUNTY, TENNESSEE TO 1900, by Jonathan Kinnon Smith, Esq., M.A., C.G., no date. Page 134:


"For many years it was thought that Willis and Dennis Rushing, brothers, were the first ever to settle in Benton County (1818). However, research has revealed that there were numerous families in the county before that date, although the Rushing's were among the first to settle within the county's borders.

The Rushings were a numerous family in Anson Co., N.C. Various ones of them emigrated to Stewart Co., Tenn., just NE of Benton County prior to 1820. In the federal census of that county for 1820, William, Dennis, Abel, Hardy, Philip, Matthew, and Reuben Rushing were reported living there. As in N.C., the Rushings tended to live in the same neighborhood one with another.

Only one Rushing was reported as living in Humphrey's County in 1820, and he was Rowland Rushing, who was later active in the politics of Benton County. Abel Rushing was one reported to have settled on White Oak Crk, in 1805, in Humphreys Co. This creek was located close by the Stewart County (now Houston County) border.

Willis and Dennis Rushing entered a joint land claim for 200 acres on Rushing's Creek, 30 Jan. 1821. (Benton Co: entries 1820-48, p.25). They evidently moved their families to the new acreage about this time. Willis Rushing may have preceded Dennis Rushing there, in a moving condition and hence was missed in the 1820 census. Their cousin, Abel Rushing, entered a land claim in the same area in Dec. 1822. (Ibid., p.56).

The 1830 census would indicate that Abel Rushing was born within the 1770-80 decade. He settled in the Rushing's Creek section and prospered. He died 27 August 1836 and was buried in the churchyard of the Rushing's Creek Missionary Baptist Church. His wife, Sarah (30 March 1788-29 Nov 1857) was buried there also. Their children (Benton Co: circ. ct. minutes A, pp 117-119): (1) William G. Rushing (d.1838) (2) Jackson Rushing; (3) Jemima Rushing; (4) Joel Rushing; (5) Sarah Ann Rushing; (6) Noah Rushing; (7) Robert Rushing; (8) Nancy Rushing, m. John Wesley Utley.

A younger brother of Abel Utley (Hist. of Tenn. bio. sks., p.950), was Robert Rushing, who was born in N.C., about 1790. He m. Livley Webb (d.1868) and they moved to Benton County in 1824; he owned an 800 acre farm there. He died in 1854, leaving a numerous family, including the merchant of Pt. Mason, Holden Rushing (1825-1887). (Ibid).

Willis Rushing (? 1790-1855) owned a 1000 acre farm at the time of his demise. He m. Mary Rasbery (d.1862); they had a numerous family. (Ibid., p.951)

Dennis Rushing was born about 1786 in N.C., he was a brother of Willis Rushing (Ibid., p.951). He was living in Stewart Co., Tenn. by 1820. He died in Benton County in 1860, leaving children (Benton Co: wills 1855-1916, p.391):(1) Elizabeth Rushing, m. Abner Smalley; (2) Richard B. Rushing; (3) Zilpha Rushing, m. Roland Rushing; (4) Asa Rushing; (5) Amelian Rushing, m. Allen C. Corbitt; (6) Joel Rushing; (7) David L. Rushing; (8) Willis J. Rushing; (9) Harriett Rushing, m. E. Brewer."

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I copied this exactly as it is printed, so obviously the sixth paragraph needed some punctuation. Would you agree? More later. Bev in Fallbrook, CA

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