DAVIDSON COUNTY, TENNESSEE
Apparently William Gowen became attracted to the new settlement in Tennessee along the Cumberland River. Glowing reports were coming back about the fertility of the land and the opportunities the new area offered. It is believed that he was influenced there primarily by his son-in-law, Capt. John Rains who had been there at the invitation of Capt. James Robertson, founder of Nashville. Cleve Weathers, a descendant of Nashville, wrote that Capt. John Rains was pointed toward Harrodsburg, Kentucky until his meeting with James Robertson.
Since the area at that time was part of the state of North Carolina and since William Gowen may have served in the militia of that state, he felt assured of receiving a land grant there. Frank Maxwell Gowen, family researcher of Phoenix, wrote that he was accompanied in the move to Tennessee by his sons, William Gowen, John Gowen and James H. Gowen
Settlers living along the Watauga River in December 1787, after the star-crossed Free State of Franklin adventure in 1784, signed a petition addressed to the General Assembly of North Carolina requesting a separate state for Tennessee. Signors included “William Goings,” Samuel Cox and Robert McCall.
It is believed that William Gowen arrived in Davidson County in the winter of 1779 under the guidance of Capt. John Rains. Since the Buchanan-Mulherrin party also arrived in Nashville in the winter of 1779, it is possible that the two parties traveled together. The estate of John Buchanan was inventoried October 4, 1787 by James Mulherrin and John Buchanan, administrators.
In 1788 counterfeit money began to appear in Nashville, and the county court appointed inspectors to begin to search for the source of the bogus money.
The Gowen men entered Davidson County at a time when it was constantly beset with Indian attacks from the Chickasaw, the Creek and the Chickamauga tribes.
On May 13, 1780 William Gowen was one of the signors of the Cumberland Compact Articles of Government. The document was signed by 255 men who lived in the five stations along the Cumberland River at that time. “John Cowan” also signed the document.
Fierce Indian fighting raged around the new settlements on the Cumberland, and David Gowen, regarded as an associate of William Gowen, was killed in 1780 in an attack on Mansker’s Station. There are two possible locations for Mansker’s Station. Mansker’s Station is now a historical spot near Goodletsville, Tennessee. Patrick Quigley was killed along with David Gowen.
Casper Mansker, a German long hunter from Pennsylvania, had built the fort called Mansker’s Station in 1779. He was the son of Ludwig Maintzger, an emigrant from Baden-Wurttemburg, and was born on a ship crossing the Atlantic in 1749, according to the Mansker Website on the Internet. Ludwig Maintzger, a Revolutionary soldier was killed November 24, 1776 near Coryell’s Ferry, Pennsylvania.
Kasper Mansker first arrived in Middle Tennessee in 1769 with a hunting party, according to Walter T. Durham in “Kasper Mansker: Cumberland Frontiersman.” He was mentioned in Work Progress Administration’s “Writer’s Guide to Tennessee” published in 1931:
“Mansker became known for his Indian-fighting ability and later was made a major in the State Militia. That Mansker was an effective fighter is shown in a letter Andrew Jackson wrote to the Chickasaw [Indians] in 1812 when he was seeking their aid. ‘Do you remember, Jackson asked, ‘when the whole Creek Nation came to destroy your towns that a few hundred Chickasaws aided by a few whites chased them back to their nation, killing the best of their warriors and covering the rest with shame.’ The ‘few whites’ Jackson referred to were led by Mansker.
It was to Masker’s small, stoutly built house here that Col. John Donelson brought his family after his epic water trip on the adventure from the Watauga Settlement to Nashville. Mansker took the whole family in.”
When Sumner County was created in 1786 by partitioning Davidson County, Mansker’s Creek was chosen as the boundary line. Mansker’s Fort on the east bank was then located in Sumner County. At age 60, Kasper Mansker took part in the Nickajack Campaign. In 1795, he led the white troops which joined the Chickasaws to route the Creek attackers. Mansker borrowed a small swivel cannon which had been used by the defenders of Buchanan’s Station in 1792 to repulse the Indians. When it was fired, the Creek went home to stay, according to Durham. He wrote:
“Kasper Mansker and his great nephew Lewis Mansker enlisted in Capt. William Martin’s company of Col. Thomas Williamson’s Second Regiment of Tennessee Volunteer Mounted Gunmen. They joined Gen. John Coffee’s Brigade near New Orleans and participated in the Battle of New Orleans.”
Kasper Mansker died in 1820 and was regarded as a great soldier and a great patriot by his Middle Tennessee comrades. He was one of the first to sign the Cumberland Compact.
The Compact read:
“ARTICLES OF AGREEMENT
or Compact of Government entered into by settlers on the Cumberland river, 1st May, 1780.
[The first page is lost, and the second and third are torn and defaced.]
…..priority of right shall be determined as soon [as]……… veniently may be, in the following manner……………………. Say; The free men of this Country over the age………………..one Years shall immediately or as soon as may……………….proceed to elect and choose twelve Conscientious and de……….persons, from or out of the different Stations. That is………say, from Nashborough three, from Gaspers two, ………………. Bledsoes one, Ashers one, stones River one, …………………. Freelands one, Eatons two, Fort Union one…………………… Which said persons or a majority of them, after being bound by the solemnity of an Oath to do equal and impartial Justice between all contending parties, according to the ……….. of their skill and Judgment, having due……………. to the Regulations of the Lan………………………………. shall be competent Judge …………………………………. hearing the Allegations ………………………………….. Wittnesses as to the facts …………………………………. as to the truth of the fa…………………………………… decide the controversie, an………………………………… entitled to an entry for such………………………………. said determination or decision …………………………….. and conclusive, against the futu……………………………. partie, against whom such Judg…………………………….. and the Entry Taker shall make a………………………….. his Book accordingly and the Entry ……… ing partie so cast shall be, …………if it had never been made, and the Land in dispute………. to the person in whose favour such Judgment shall in case of the death removal, or absence of any of the Judges so to be chosen, or their refusing to act, the Station to which such person or persons belong or was chosen from, shall proceed to Elect another or others in his or their stead, which person or persons so chosen after being sworn as aforesaid to do equal and impartial Justice, shall have full power and, authority to proceed to business and act in all disputes respecting the premises as if they had been originally Ch………… at the first Election.
That the entry Book shall be kept fair and open by …………. be appointed by the said Richard Hender…………….try for Land numbered and dated ………………….ving any blank leaves or spaces ………………….on of the said twelve Judges ………………….
Times ………………. y persons have come to this Cou ………………….Husbandry, and from other ……………return without making a Crop, …………….this fall or early next spring ……………………… that all such should have the …………………of such places as they may have …………….. for the purpose of residence, therefore it is …………….be taken for all such, for as much as they are entitled to, from their Head rights, which said Lands shall be reserved for the particular person in whose in whose name they shall be entered, or their Heirs, provided such persons shall remove to this Country and take possession of the respective place or piece of Land so chosen or entered, or shall send a labourer or labourers and a white person in his or her stead to perform the same on or before the first day of May in the Year one thousand seven hundred and eighty one and also provided such Land so chosen and entered for, is not entered and claimed by some person who is an Inhabitant and shall raise a Crop of Corn the present Year at some Station or place convenient to the General settlement in this Country.
But it is fully to be understood, that those who are actually at this Time Inhabitants of this Country shall not be debar’d of their choice or claim on account of the right of any such absent or returning person or persons.
It is further proposed and agreed, that no claim or title to any Lands whatsoever shall be set up by any person in consequence of any Mark, or former improvement, unless the same be entered with the Entry Taker within Twenty Days from the date of this association and agreement; and that when any person hereafter shall mark or improve Land or Lands for himself such mark or improvement not shall avail him, or be deemed an evidence of prior right unless the same be entered with the Entry Taker in thirty days from the time of such mark or improvement, but no other person shall be entitled to such Land so as aforesaid to be reserved in consequence of any purchase, Gift or otherwise.
That if the Entry Taker to be appointed shall neglect or refuse to perform his duty or be found by the said Judges or a majority of them to have acted fraudulently to the prejudice of any person whatsoever, such Entry Taker shall be immediately removed from his office, and the Book taken out of his possession by the said Judges, untill another shall be appointed to act in his room.
That as often as the people in General are dissatisfied with the doings of the Judges or Triers, so to be chosen, they may call a new election at any of the said Stations and Elect others to act in their stead, having due respect to the number now agreed to be elected at each Station, which persons so to be chosen shall have the same power with those in whose room or place they are or may be chosen to act.
That as no consideration money for the Lands on Cumberland River within the claim of the said Richard Henderson and Company and which is the subject of this association, is demanded or expected by the said Company untill a satisfactory and indisputable Title can be made, so we think it reasonable and Just that the twenty six pounds thirteen shillings and four pence current money per hundred Acres, the price proposed by the said Richard Henderson shall be paid according to the value of money on the first Day of January last, being the time when the price was made public, and Settlement encouraged thereon by said Henderson, and the said Richard Henderson on his part does hereby agree that in case of the rise or appreciation of money from that an abatement shall be made in the sum according to its raised or appreciated value.
That when any person shall remove to this Country with intent to become an Inhabitant and depart this life, either by violence or in the natural way before he shall have performed the requisites necessary to obtain Lands, the Child or Children of such deceased person shall be entitled in his or her room to such quantity of Land as such person would have been entitled to in case he or she had have lived to obtain a grant in their own name. And if such death be occasioned by the Indians, the said Henderson doth promise and agree that the Child or Children shall have as much as amounts to their head rights gratis, Surveyors and other incidental Fees excepted.
And whereas from our remote situation and want of proper officers for the administration of Justice no regular procedure at Law can be had for the punishment of offences and attainment of right. It is therefore agreed that untill we can be relieved by Government from the many Evils and inconveniences arising therefrom, the Judges or triers to be appointed as before directed when qualified shall be and are hereby declared a proper Court or Jurisdiction for the recovery of any debt or damages or where the cause of action or complaint has arisen or hereafter shall commence, for any thing done or to be done among ourselves within this our settlement on Cumberland aforesaid or in our passage hither, where the Law of our Country could not be exercised or damages repaired any other way, That is to say, in all cases where the Damages or demand does or shall not exceed one hundred Dollars, any three of the said Judges or Triers shall be competent to make a Court and finally decide the matter in comtroversie, but if for a larger sum and either partie shall be dissatisfied with the Judgment or decision of such Court, they may have an appeal to the whole twelve Judges or triers in which case nine members shall be deemed a full Court, whose decision if seven agree in one opinion upon the matter in dispute shall be final and their Judgment carried into execution in such manner and by such person or persons as they may appoint, and the said Courts respectively shall have full power to Tax such Costs as they may think Just and reasonable to be levied or collected with the debt or damages so to be awarded.
And it is further agreed that a majority of the said Judges, Triers or General Arbitrators shall have power to punish in their discretion, having respect to the Laws of our Country, all offences against the peace misdemeanours and those Criminal or of a Capital nature, provided such Court does not proceed with execution so far as to effect Life or Member; and in case any should be brought before them, whose crime is or shall be dangerous to the State or for which the benefit of Clergy is taken away by Law and sufficient evidence or proof of the fact or facts can probably be made such Court or a majority of the Members shall and may Order and direct him, her or them to be safely bound and sent under a strong guard to the place where the offence was or shall be committed or where Legal trial of such offence can be had which shall accordingly be done, and the reasonable expense attending the discharge of this duty ascertained by the Court and paid by the Inhabitants in such proportion as shall be hereafter agreed on for that purpose.
That as this settlement is in its infancy, unknown to Government and not included within any County in North Carolina, the State to which it belongs so as to derive the advantages of those wholesome and salutary Laws for the protection and benefit of its Citizens, we find ourselves constrained from necessity to adopt this temporary method of restraining the licentious and supplying by unanimous consent the Blessings flowing from a Just and equitable Government, declaring and promising that no Action or Complaint shall be hereafter instituted or lodged in any Court of Record within this State or elsewhere for any thing done, or to be done in consequence of the proceedings of the said Judges or general arbitrators so to be chosen and established by this our Association.
That as the well being of this Country entirely depends under Divine providence on unanimity of sentiment and concurrence in measures, and as clashing and various Interests, passions, and opinions without being under some restraint will most certainly produce confusion, discord and allmost certain ruin, so we think it our duty to associate and hereby form ourselves into one society for the benefit of present and future settlers, and untill the full and proper exercise of the Laws of our Country can be in use and the powers of Government exerted among us, ùWe do most solemnly and sacredly declare and promise each other that we will faithfully and punctually adhere to, perform, and abide by this our Association and will at all times if need be, compel by our united force a due obedience to these our Rules and Regulations.
In Testimony whereof we have hereunto subscribed our names in token of our entire approbation of the measures adopted.
The following or additional resolutions and farther association was also entered into at Nashborough this thirteenth Day of May 1780 To wit:
That all Young Men over the age of sixteen Years and able to perform militia duty shall be considered as having a full right to enter for and obtain Lands in their own name as if they were of full age, and in that case not be reckoned in the Family of his Father Mother or Master so as to avail them of any Land on their account.
That where any person shall mark or improve Land or Lands with intent to set up a claim thereto, such person shall write or mark in Legible characters the Initial Letters of his name at least, together with the Day of the Month and Year on which he marked or improved the same at the spring or most notorious part of the Land on some convenient Tree, or other durable substance, in order to notifie his intentions to all such as may enquire or examine, and in case of dispute with respect to priority of right, proof of such transaction shall be made by the oath of some indifferent Witness or no advantage or benefit shall be derived from such mark or improvement, and in all cases where priority of mark or occupancy cannot be ascertained according to the regulations and prescriptions herein proposed and agreed to, the oldest or first Entry in the office to be opened in consequence of this Association shall have the preference and the lands granted accordingly.
lt is further proposed and agreed that the Entry office shall be opened at Nashborough on Friday the 19th of May [instant] and kept from thenceforward at the same place unless otherwise directed by any future Convention of the people in general or their representatives.
That the Entry Taker shall and may demand and receive twelve Dollars for each entry to be made in his Book in manner before directed, and shall give a certificate thereof if required, and also may take the same Fees for every Caveat or counter claim to any Lands before entered, and in all cases where a caveat is to be tried in manner before directed, the Entry Book shall be laid before the said Committee of Judges, Triers or General arbitrators for their inspection and information and their Judgment upon the matter in dispute fairly entered as before directed, which said Court or Committee is also to keep a fair and distinct Journal or minutes of all their proceedings as well as with respect to Lands as other matters which may come before them in consequence of these our resolutions.
[A caveat is a legal notice suspending a legal proceeding until a hearing is held.]
It is also firmly agreed and resolved that no Person shall be admitted to make an Entry for any Lands with the said Entry Taker or permitted to hold the same unless such person shall subscribe his name and conform to this our Association, confederacy and general agreement unless it be for persons who have returned home and are permitted to have lands reserved for their use untill the first day of May next, in which case entries may be made for such absent Persons according to the True meaning of this writing without their personal presence, but shall become utterly void, if the particular person or persons for whom such entry shall be made should refuse or neglect to perform the same as soon as conveniently may be after their return, and before the said first day of May in the Year 1781.
Whereas the frequent and dangerous incursions of the Indians and allmost daily massacre of some of our Inhabitants renders it absolutely necessary for our safety and defence that due obedience be paid to our respective officers elected and to be elected at the several Stations or settlements to take command of the Men or Militia at such Fort or Station. It is further agreed and resolved that when it shall be adjudged necessary and expedient by such Commanding Officer, to draw out the Militia of any fort or Station to pursue or repulse the Enemy the said Officer shall have power to call out such and so many of his Men as he may Judge necessary, and in case of disobedience may inflict such fine as he in his discretion shall think Just and reasonable, and also may impress the Horse or Horses of any person or persons whomsoever, which if lost or damaged in such service shall be paid for by the Inhabitants of such Fort or Station in such manner and such proportion as the Committee hereby appointed or a majority of them shall direct and order; but if any person shall be agrieved or think himself unjustly used and injured by the fine or fines so imposed by his official Officers, such Person may appeal to the said Judges or Committee of General Arbitrators who, or a majority of them shall have power to examine the matter fully and make such order thereon as they may think Just and reasonable, which decisions shall be conclusive on the partie complaining as well as the Officer or Officers inflicting such fine, and the money arising from such fines shall be carefully applied for the benefit of such Fort or Station in such manner as the said Arbitrators shall hereafter direct.
It is lastly agreed and firmly resolved, that a dutiful and humble address or Petition be presented by some Person or Persons to be chosen by the Inhabitants to the General Assembly, giving the fullest assurance of the fidelity and attachment to the Interest of our Country and obedience to the Laws and constitution thereof: setting forth that we are confident that our settlement is not within the bounds of any Nation or Tribe of Indians, as some of us know and all believe, that they have fairly sold and received satisfaction for the lands or Territories whereon we reside and therefore hope we may not be considered as acting against the laws of our Country or the mandates of Government. That we do not desire to be exempt from the ratable share of the public expense of the present war or other contingent charges of Government.
That we are from our remote situation utterly destitute of the benefit of the Laws of our Country, and exposed to the depredations of the Indians without any Justifiable or effectual means of embodying our Militia or defending ourselves against the hostile attempts of our enemy, praying and imploring the immediate aid and protection of Government by erecting a County to include our settlements, appointing proper Officers for the discharge of public duty, Taking into consideration our distressed situation with respect to the Indians, and granting such relief and assistance as in wisdom, Justice and humanity may be thought reasonable.
Nashborough 13th May 1780
The signatures were entered in the sequence in which the signatories appeared.
Wm. H. Moore
Jno Donelson. C.
Jno Blackemore Senr.
Jno. Blakemore Junr.
James [X] Patrick
James Buchanan Sr.
John Cowan [John Gowen?]
W. Russell Junr.
Wm. Bailey Smith
Thos. W. Alston
D. D. Williams
Brenda Gains Gulick wrote that the Indian warfare began in adjoining Sumner County in 1780. She wrote:
“In the month of June, two settlers by the names of Goin and Kennedy were clearing land between Mansker’s Station and Eaton’s Station. A party of Indians stole up behind some brush heaps the men were making, and when the later came near, they were fired upon and killed. The savages then rushed out, tore off the scalps of their victims and escaped unharmed into the surrounding forest.”
Sometimes they attacked alone, sometimes in concert. Davidson County was created May 17, 1783 out of the Cumberland District of North Carolina. Sumner County was created out of the eastern part of Davidson County January 6, 1787.
William Gowen was appointed to the Davidson County grand jury January 4, 1784.
The preemption of William Gowen was “located and entered” January 15, 1784 and surveyed by John Buchanan on March 16, 1785 in consequence of Warrant No. 116, according to Cleve Weathers. William paid the State of North Carolina £10 per 100 acres for the land which was recorded March 11, 1788 in Davidson County Deed Book A, page 161.
On January 2, 1786 “William Gowan” appeared on a Davidson County jury which tried Robert Espey “for profane swearing and Sabbath breaking,” according to Davidson County court minutes. Espey was acquitted.
“Ambrose Goins,” regarded as a kinsman of William Gowen appeared briefly in Davidson County in 1786. He must have been a resident there because he was summoned to serve on a jury panel in April 1786. The fierce Indian attacks on the Cumberland settlement may have prompted him to return east.
Col. James Robertson, leader of the Cumberland settlements, sought to put an end to the Indian attacks and planned an expedition against them in 1787. Learning from two friendly Chickasaws, one of whom was known as Toka, Col. Robertson determined to take the offensive in the war, according to Pollyanna Creekmore, eminent Tennessee history researcher.
“Taking two friendly Chickasaws as guides, he made a rapid march with 130 men and attacked the Indian stronghold at Coldwater [now Tuscumbia, Alabama].
The Indians were routed almost without resistance. The town was destroyed, and a large store of goods were captured. Other campaigns against the Indians were undertaken. One, led by Capt. David Hays, was successful, although some of his soldiers were killed. On another occasion Capt. John Rains raised a force of 60 men and successfully attacked the Chickasaws.”
Irene M. Griffey writing in “The Preemptors: Middle Tennessee’s First Settlers,” Volume 1 included a list of 272 men who fought the Indians during this period. The list included James Maxwell, Beal Bosley, Elijah Robertson, Fuller Cox, John Cox, Enos Cox, Capt. John Rains, Jacob Donelson, Capt. David Hay, Moses Shelby and Frederick Stump.
The payroll records of the men in these expeditions were mixed with indexes of Revolutionary Army Accounts in Raleigh, North Carolina, causing many researchers to conclude that these men had Revolutionary service. Irene M. Griffey pointed out that the Tennessee militiamen were issued certificates documenting their service against the Indians.
“Certificates Nos. 1 through 469 were “for Mil. serv. p’formed in Davidson;” 470-559 were “for Service Perform’d in Sumner Co.” Beginning with No. 570 [Joseph Martin] through 1422 [John McLellin] are payments for “Service p’formed agst. Chicamoga Indians.”
It is possible that the wives remained in Kentucky with the minor children during the homesteading period of the Gowens in Middle Tennessee. The Indian menace was very real, and many settlers there elected to pull back. Conditions were very primitive in Davidson County, North Carolina when William Gowen arrived. There were no courts and no law enforcement officers. James Shaw was selected as the first justice of the peace in 1781, according to the minutes of Davidson County Court records:
“On October 13, 1792, personally came Julius Sanders & Samuel Frelen and declared on oath that about 1781, people then resident in Nashborough made choice of James Shaw to supply the place of Justice of Peace in marrying people, there being neither Gospel Minister nor Justice of the Peace legally commissioned amongst us, courts of justice not being then established here.”
The name of Ft. Nashborough was changed to Nashville July 7, 1784 by Davidson County Court. The county court established some price controls they felt were equitable in the new frontier settlement. Ferry keepers fees were regulated as:
“Man & horse 6 pence
Man or horse 3 pence
Black cattle 2d per head
Sheep & hogs 1d per head”
Tavern keepers were also regulated by the court:
“Breakfast 1 shilling
Dinner 2 shillings
Supper 1 shilling
Whiskey ½ pint 6 shillings
Good bed, 1 night` 2 d”
John Boyd was £10.2 by the court January 9, 1789 “for plastering the inside of the courthouse, with extra services.”
William Gowen is believed to be first among the Gowen family members to settle in the area of Ft. Nashborough [originally called French Lick]. He received Preemption Claim No. 27 to “two acres on a small branch of Mill Creek,” according to “North Carolina Land Grants in Tennessee,” by Lilliam Johnson Gardiner and Betty Goff Cook Cartwright. A preemption claim indicated actual residence.
“William Gowan” received North Carolina Land Grant No. 20 on Warrant No. 116 to “640 acres on a small branch of Mill Creek” in Davidson County April 17, 1786, according to Tennessee State Land Book C7, page 8 in Tennessee State Archives. His deed was recorded March 11, 1788 in Davidson County Deed Book A, page 161. The property was described in the deed as:
“640 acres on the east side of Mill Creek . . . beginning at a hickory on Ebenezer Titus’ east boundary line and running east 320 poles to an oak, south 320 poles to a white oak, west crossing a branch of Mill Creek at 160 poles and another at 266 poles, cornered at 320 poles, north to the beginning . . . ”
The land, “320 poles [1 mile] square” lay on both sides of a tributary of Mill Creek and was located about six miles southeast of present-day downtown Nashville. The Murphreesboro Pike later crossed the northern portion of his property. The Central Tennessee State Hospital for the Insane was built on his property before the Civil War and the Metropolitan Nashville Airport was later installed on the preemption.
“David Goin, Patrick Quigley, Betsy Kennedy, John Shockley, James Lumsley and William Neely” were killed at Mansker’s Station, according to “Early Times in Middle Tennessee” published in 1857 by John Carr.
On March 4, 1783, “William Goings entered into bond in Davidson County with James Shaw, security, in the amount of £200 specie” and was granted the administration of “the estate of David Goings, deceased” by the Nashville Committee. William Gowen signed the return of the estate of David Gowen presented to the court. Shortly afterwards “William Gowens” as administrator of the estate of “David Gowens, deceased” sued John Gibson in a “plea of detinue*.”
Worth S. Ray, writing in “Tennessee Cousins” stated, “The court of the Cumberland District met again of June 3, 1783, and the Estate of David Gowen came up against John Gibson.” The estate was awarded £2 “for a heifer he disposed of,” according to early Nashville court records.
William Gowen was listed as a grand juror October 7, 1783 on the first grand jury panel in Davidson County and again in January 1784, according to “First Records of Davidson County, Tennessee.” Davidson County, at the time, embraced all of the present counties of Davidson, Cheatham, Williamson, Rutherford, Maury, Marshall and Bedford Counties.
William Overall was granted letters of administration on the estate of Patrick Quigley July 6, 1784, according to “Davidson County, Tennessee County Court Minutes, 1783-1792.” by Carol Wells. Overall filed suit against “the heirs of Patrick Quigley” in County Court April 5, 1785. On July 5, 1785 when the “heirs made default,” Overall was awarded by the court “£14:10:8” and the sheriff was ordered to sell the Quigley land “to satisfy debt.”
William Gowen sold to Frederick Stump “one negro fellow named Guy” according to a bill of sale dated December 19, 1785 recorded in Davidson County Will Book 1, page 161.
Frederick Stump was a persona non grata in Pennsylvania where Gov. John Penn had issued a proclamation September 23, 1766 in Philadelphia that “Frederick Stump, a German was not authorized to settle upon land near Ft. Augusta. In January 1768 Frederick Stump and John Ironcutter were jailed in Cumberland County, Pennsylvania “for killing 10 Indians.” In contrast, Frederick Stump was welcomed on the Tennessee frontier where his Indian-slaying abilities were greatly appreciated. He and his son, Frederick Stump, Jr. were prominent in the community and frequently served as jurors and public office holders.
William Gowen was selected as a juror January 2, 1786 and again October 3, 1787, according to early Nashville Court records. On the latter date, the Court minutes reflected the seriousness of the Indian threat by bringing in regular troops, “For the better furnishing of the troops now coming to this county under command of Maj. Evans, Resolved that one-fourth of the County tax be paid in corn, two-fourths in beef, pork, bear and venison, one-eighth in salt and one-eighth in money to defray expenses of removing provisions from place of collection to troops.” Ten collection points, “including Maj. Buchanan’s” were established.
The Davidson County Court Minute Book records that “William Gowens” sued the heirs of “David Gowens” in the January, 1788 session of court. The defendants, unnamed, did not appear in court, and the court awarded to the plaintiff “£7:14:3 in damages.” A writ of attachment [legal means of seizure] was granted by the court to William Gowen October 9, 1788, and the sheriff was ordered to sell the land. It is likely that there were no “defendants” to appear, and the suit was merely a formality to satisfy the requirements of the law.
On March 11, 1788, William Gowen received his title from the State of North Carolina to his 640-acre land grant, according to Davidson County Deed Book A, page 161. “William Gowens” appeared as a juror for the last time October 7, 1788. Shortly afterward, a new lawyer, Andrew Jackson, Esquire “produced his license to practice law in the several county courts of the state and took oath” January 5, 1789.
On the following day, “Gowen, appellant” vs. “Boyd, appeallee” was heard, and “the jury finds for the appeallee, £7:4:4 with cost, judgment accordingly.” On the same date, the “jury finds for the plaintiff in Murdock [plaintiff] vs. Gowens.”
Sometime before 1790 William Gowen witnessed a bill of sale of a negro girl, age 12, price £150 pounds, according to Davidson County Will Book 1, page 90. As late as 1789, the county was still referred to as Davidson County, North Carolina. It is believed that a slave named Guy accompanied William Gowen in his move to Tennessee. Steve Rogers of the Tennessee Historical Commission found evidence that Guy lived in a small slave cabin adjacent to the home of William Gowen.
It is possible that the household of William Gowen may have been included in the enumeration of the 1790 census of North Carolina, but to date, it has not been documented. The first census did not have the value to genealogists that later enumerations had.
Patricia Law Hatcher, CG, FASG, had an accurate appraisal of the 1790 census:
“The 1790 census [which was not completed until 1791 in some areas] provides less information than any other. We have only the name of the head of household and counts for free white males 16 and over; free white males under 16; free white females; other free persons; and slaves. The canvassing, which covered residents in 17 present-day states, found 3,929,214 persons–almost 18 percent of them enslaved–in approximately 540,000 households [about seven persons per household].
Because the enumerator was paid $1 for every 150 persons enumerated [half that rate in cities], and because the enumeration established each state’s representation in Congress, there was incentive on both sides for a complete enumeration.
The schedules for Delaware, Georgia, Kentucky, New Jersey, Tennessee, and Virginia were casualties of the British burning of the Capitol during the War of 1812. These schedules contained about 30 percent of the total enumerations.. Substitutes have been constructed, primarily from tax lists, but they lack the household figures.”
William Gowen died in Davidson County sometime before July 1790 at about age 70. Harriette Simpson Arnow, writing in “Flowering of the Cumberland,” states that William Gowen was “killed,” suggesting that he, too, was a victim of the Indians.
Cleve Weathers wrote, “The uncertainties of life in the Mero District are partially reflected in an account by Harriette Simpson Arnow, in a section of her book dealing with Indian warfare and the role of women. From “Flowering of the Cumberland,” published by The Macmillan Company, 1963, page 31:
‘Around two-thirds of the wives of the original settlers were widowed before the ending of the Indian Wars in Middle Tennessee in 1795. Numerous others, settling later–Mesdames Anthony and Isaac Bledsoe, Edwin Hickman, Jacob Castleman, John Donelson, Sr., Henry Rutherford, William Ramsey, to name only a few, were also widowed.’”
On July 13, 1790, apparently after the death of William Gowen, Andrew Ewing acknowledged before the County Court that William Gowen had indeed executed a bill of sale [probably] for “one Negro fellow named Guy” to Frederick Stump, according to the Court minutes.
On January 10, 1791 David Hay, justice of the Davidson County Court headed his court minutes with “Territory of the United States South of the River Ohio.”
It is believed that the property of William Gowen adjoined that of James Buchanan. Buchanan’s Station was built by James Buchanan to protect against the Indians and especially to defend the grist mill that had been constructed on Mill Creek. The Buchanan Cemetery is now located near the intersection of Elm Hill Pike and Briley Parkway within the city of Nashville. The Buchanan home, built about 1800, was still standing in 1978. Frank Maxwell Gowen visited the site in that year and wrote, “The cemetery is rather small, probably not over 75 graves, and it is located directly behind the old brick mansion which is quite large.”
On July 12, 1790 the County Court granted a court order to “Sarah Gowens” authorizing her to sell the estate of her husband. In Davidson County Will Book 1, page 168 Sarah Gowen, administrator of the estate of her husband, returned an inventory of the estate of “William Gowen deceased of Davidson County, North Carolina” listing “one mare & colt, saddles, farm and carpenter’s tools, shoemaker tools, razor, guns, household goods, cotton cards, six pounds of powder, eight pounds of lead, eight dry cows, eight steers, ducks, hens, some money and bonds.”
In Davidson County Will Book 1, page 175, dated October 1790, Sarah Simpson Gowen returned into a court a total of the proceeds of the estate sale of William Gowen, “£597:11 for articles sold”–livestock, household goods and farm equipment. Until 1792, American currency was still based on the English system of pounds, shillings and pence.
Frank Maxwell Gowen made a copy of the estate sale of William Gowen in June 1976 while researching the family history in the Davidson County courthouse. The accounting was recorded as:
“An Inventory of the Sale of the Estate of William Gowens, Decd. as delivered into court October Term, 1790 by Sarah Gowens, Admx. of the estate of sd. Gowens Decd. Amounting on the sale to £597:11 shillings [two words illegible]:
Purchaser Item Price–Pounds:Shillings
======== ======== =====
John Hague One cow & calf 6:00
John Hague Two cows, one calf 16:15
Sarah Gowens One black & white steer 5:01
Sarah Gowens One small red steer 3:11
Sarah Gowens One red yearling heifer & calf 6:
Sarah Gowens One barren white faced cow 8:11
Sarah Gowens One small red bull 3:11
Sarah Gowens One two-year-old heifer 5:01
Samuel Deason One 3-year-old heifer & 2 bulls 8:15
Timothy Demumbre One-year bay colt 39:
Sarah Gowens One roan mare 16:
Sarah Gowens One gray horse 26:
Sarah Gowens One great plow 2:06
Sarah Gowens One shear & cotton 2:12
Sarah Gowens One pair of iron wedges 1:16
Sarah Gowens One axe 1:
Sarah Gowens One pair of doubletrees 1:
Sarah Gowens One auger 1:
Sarah Gowens One 3/4″ auger 1:14
Sarah Gowens One drawing knife 1:03
Robert Weakly One foot adze 1:14
Dan Hill One handsaw 18:
Nimrod Williams One cow & calf 6:15
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf 6:
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf 8:
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf [Illegible]
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf 6:
Sarah Gowens One steer 7:
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf 8:15
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf 8:08
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf 8:05
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf 8:11
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf 9:05
Sarah Gowens One steer 5:07
Sarah Gowens One steer 5:05
Sarah Gowens One steer 5:16
Sarah Gowens One barren cow 6:01
Francis Armstrong One cow & calf 6:10
George A. Sugg One red heifer 5:
Lardner Clark One cow & calf 6:08
Benjamin Barnes One cow & calf 7:10
George A. Sugg One yearling steer 3:10
George A. Sugg One cow & calf 6:06
George A. Sugg One steer 4:10
George A. Sugg One steer 5:12
George A. Sugg One cow & calf 6:
John Hague One cow & calf 10:06
James Bosley One cow & calf 6:10
James Bosley One barren cow 9:
Francis Armstrong One dark bull 4:06
William Anderson One cow & calf 8:
Sarah Gowens One woman’s saddle 1:
Sarah Gowens One man’s saddle 6:05
Sarah Gowens One pot 1:01
Sarah Gowens One pot & hooks 3:05
Sarah Gowens One Dutch oven 4:05
Sarah Gowens One pot rack 1:
Sarah Gowens One pair of steelyards [scales] 4:02
Sarah Gowens One grindstone 1:02
Sarah Gowens One smooth iron 0:08
Sarah Gowens Two snaffle bridles 1:09
Sarah Gowens One shotgun 2:01
Sarah Gowens One riffle gun 6:10
Bradley Gambrel One pair of spectacles 0:07
Timothy Demumbre One razor 0:24
George Augustus Sugg One pair of saddle bags 1:01
Lardner Clark One sow & pigs 3:06
Sarah Gowens Three chisels 1:01
Sarah Gowens One ax 1:03
Sarah Gowens One razor 1:10
Sarah Gowens One hoe 1:05
Sarah Gowens Two clevises 2:05
Sarah Gowens Two hoes 1:04
Sarah Gowens One cart 9:
Sarah Gowens One feather bed & furniture 20:
Sarah Gowens Two bedsteads 3:
Sarah Gowens One lot of spools 0:10
Benjamin Barnes One brod ax 2:01
Bobo Stovall One hatchet 0:18
Jonas Manifee One ax 1:03
Bradley Gambrel Two axes 2:02
Sarah Gowens Tanned leather 2:08
Sarah Gowens More tanned leather 1:01
Sarah Gowens Two tin kettles 1:06
Sarah Gowens Six pewter basins, 2 dishes,
6 plates 15:08
Sarah Gowens Seven tin cups & six spoons 0:19
Sarah Gowens One slate 0:20
Sarah Gowens Six lbs. powder & 8 lbs. of lead 6:
Sarah Gowens Seven 1/2 pt. bottles 0:09
Sarah Gowens Four water pails, 2 coolers,
2 churns, 5 chairs 2:02
Timothy Demumbre Tanned leather 1:12
John Hague Tanned leather 0:14
Jonas Manifee One tin strainer and 1 chair 0:05
Sarah Gowens One big wheel 0:10
Sarah Gowens One little wheel 0:07
Sarah Gowens One hogshead 0:08
Sarah Gowens Two bells 1:12
Sarah Gowens One sifter 0:08
Sarah Gowens One pr. cotton cards 1:
Sarah Gowens Two pair snuffers 0:04
Sarah Gowens Eighteen ducks 1:04
Sarah Gowens Two gimblets
[small augers] 0:03
Sarah Gowens Six curls 0:06
Sarah Gowens One pair nippers
& file 0:03
Sarah Gowens Ten barrows 30:11
Sarah Gowens Six sows & 14 shoats 16:01
Sarah Gowens One sow & 2 pigs [Illegible]
Jonas Manifee One hogshead 0:07
George A. Sugg Thirty hens 1:11
Hanson Williams One gimblett 0:01
Lardner Clark One barrow 3:05
John Hague Two sows & 15 pigs 5:12
John Hague Two sows & pigs 3:
George A. Sugg One sow 1:04
George A. Sugg One pied steer 5:09
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf 2:01
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf 6:
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf 5:
Sarah Gowens One cow & calf 3:
Sarah Gowens One yearling steer 0:20
Sarah Gowens One steer 3:
Sarah Gowens One steer 1:01
Sarah Gowens One grubbing hoe 0:20
Sarah Gowens One heading hoe 0:08
Sarah Gowens Six knives & 4 forks 0:06
Sarah Gowens Five lbs. cotton 0:20
Sarah Gowens Forty wt. flax 3:
Sampson Williams Hone & razor 1:15
The commissioners made return of a judgment obtained of Twenty-nine dollars due.”
On January 10, 1791 Davidson County was no longer part of North Carolina, and David Hay, Justice began to head the County Court minutes with “Davidson County, Territory of the United States, South of the River Ohio.”
The “widow Gower” and Alexander Gowan were listed in the inventory of the estate of Edwin Hickman, deceased among individuals indebted to the estate for “ferriages.”
Sarah Gowen appeared again in the Nashville Court Record, Entry No. 270 in connection with a sheriff’s sale May 6, 1793 in Nashville “by virtue of a writ of fiere facias” in the suit of Sarah Gowen against George A. Sugg and John Hague. The fiere facias was a writ of execution ordering a levy on goods to satisfy a judgment. Apparently the two had not made payment on goods purchased at the estate auction of William Gowen. By court order the sheriff, Sampson Williams, sold at auction a negro slave woman named “China” for £80:2 shillings to John & George M. Deadrick, Nashville merchants, and the debt was settled out of the proceeds.
The Indian attacks continued on the Nashville area until 1795 when James Robertson led a large group of militiamen to the present-day location of Chattanooga. Robertson’s forces destroyed the Indian town of Nickajack in reprisal, and the Indian threat to Nashville ceased. With the Indian threat removed, the population of Davidson County almost tripled during the next five years, according to “Nashville, 1780-1860” by Prof. Anita Shafer Goodstein. In the town of Nashville in 1800, there were still only 345 people, 191 white people and 154 non-whites.
Steve Rogers of the Tennessee Historical Commission wrote September 7, 1990 that an examination of Davidson County deed records showed that the land of William Gowen was sold off in three parts:
“A 240-acre portion of this land was sold in 1807 by James H. Gowen, a son, to Daniel Vaulx, Davidson County Deed Book G, page 199. A second tract of 200 acres was sold by William Gowen [William Gowen, Jr?] to John Gowen [John Jones Gowen?] in 1818, Davidson County Deed Book M, page 338. A third tract, an area that might be affected by plans to expand the Nashville airport, consisting of 200 acres that remained in the hands of the Gowen family until 1842. At that time Wilford Burleson Gowen sold it to Jesse Collins, Davidson County Deed Book 5, page 153. In this deed, Wilford Burleson Gowen reserved “an area of 5 square poles [1 pole = 16.5′] that . . . includes the family grave yard, the right of which is reserved in me and my representatives forever.’”
Graves of other individuals were also buried there after the State of Tennessee acquired the property in 1857 to be used as a mental hospital.”
The sale of land from Wilford Burleson Gowen to Jesse Collins ended the Gowens’ 56-year association with the land. Collins, born in England in 1794, continued a farming operation on the land. The 1850 agricultural census showed a well managed farming operation with 150 of his 200 acres under cultivation, producing 1,500 bushels of corn, 200 bushels of oats and 30 tons of hay. Collins employed nine slaves at that time. Additionally, the census showed Jesse Booth, a 26-year-old blacksmith, also from England and William McGregory, a laborer from Scotland living with Collins.
On January 1, 1852 Collins sold “the farm on which I now live” to Thomas B. Johnson for $10,300, according to Davidson County Deed Book 15, page 567. Johnson conveyed the 200 acres June 4, 1856 to his son, James P. Johnson. This deed repeated the reservation of the Gowen Cemetery of “25 poles square,” according to Davidson County Deed Book 26, page 234. Eight months after his father gave him the farm, James P. Johnson sold the 200-acre tract to the State of Tennessee and the Trustees of the Hospital for the Insane for $20,000, almost double the price paid for the land five years prior.
The present day Central State Hospital tract is situated on the western edge of William Gowen’s original preemption.
An unknown number of Gowen individuals were buried in the Gowen Cemetery. The possibility exists that this cemetery was later used by the state hospital to bury black inmates. Information from the Central State Hospital records, 1891-1934, indicate that a substantial number of blacks died and were buried on the hospital property. Information on the burials is contained in “Central State Hospital Records, Weekly Reports of Removals, Discharges and Deaths, 1916-1932” located in Box 9, Tennessee State Library and Archives. Further archival and archaeological investigation will be necessary to confirm this information.
The Tennessee Division of Archaeology prepared a research design for Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority May 21, 1991. The report read:
“The Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority [MNAA] is required to conduct Phase III data recovery excavations at 40DV401 [Area D], a National Register-eligible historic site that will be impacted by the extension and realignment of Runway 2C/20C at the Nashville International Airport. Site 40DV401 [Area D], also referred to as the Gowen Farmstead primarily contains the remains of an early to mid-19th century farmstead as well as a prehistoric Archaic period occupation.
Site 40DV401 was recorded as a result of a survey by the Tennessee Division of Archaeology of an approximate 300-acre tract to be acquired by the MNAA from the State of Tennessee [Smith 1991]. This tract, part of the Middle Tennessee Mental Health Institute, will be conveyed to MNAA for the extension and realignment of Nashville International Airport Runway 2C/20C across Murfreesboro Road.
The boundaries of site 40DV401 coincide with the original land grant of 640 acres made by the State of North Carolina to William Gowen on April 17, 1786. Most of the site encompasses highly dissected uplands with some gently sloping ridge tops. Mill Creek is the closest primary drainage, flowing approximately 0.5 km south of the southwest site boundary. Several large springs occur within the site area.
The 300 acres designated for acquisition by MNAA represent approximately the western half of the 40DV401 site boundary. The 300-acre tract was divided into six arbitrary “areas, A through F, by the Division of Archaeology during the survey. Two areas, A and D, were found to have intact cultural deposits dating to the 19th [and possibly 18th] century. Area D contains the remains of at least two early-to-mid-19th-century structures. Test units in this area revealed sections of intact limestone foundations, chimney falls and a probable interior root cellar. Documentary and artifactual evidence suggests Area D was a farmstead primarily occupied from about 1810 to 1860.
Area A contains a small cemetery near, and probably originally associated with the farmstead. The cemetery area includes a low stone block wall which surrounds three graves. Test investigations outside the stone wall identified at least eight additional burials. Unexcavated areas within the proposed cemetery boundaries are believed to contain 15 to 20 more graves, bringing the potential grave total to between 25 to 30. It is probable that the graves outside the stone block wall represent other family members, slaves associated with the farmstead and/or patients from nearby Mental Health Facility. Oral traditions at the institution report that the cemetery was used for African-American patients. There is a separate cemetery located on the current hospital grounds that was used for other patients.
Area D, the farmstead, is the only portion of site 40DV401 that is covered by this data recovery plan. Since the potential construction impact upon the cemetery area, Area A, has not been determined, possible grave removal and relocation will be handled as a separate archaeological project.
All historic cultural features, such as houses, outbuildings, privies, cellars, trash pits, etc, present in site 40DV401 Area D should be located and identified during data recovery.
A small amount of late 1700s-early 1800s artifactual material [ceramics] was recovered by the testing operations by the Division of Archaeology. Recovery of several Civil War period artifacts suggests a minor military component at the site. In December 1864, two blockhouses within several miles of the site were involved in significant battles.
Due to possible media and public interest in the data recovery excavations, occasional tours of the site may be planned. Since the excavation area is adjacent to an active construction zone, media and public requests to see the site should be coordinated with the construction project manager.
Upon completion and submission of the revised final report, the archaeological contractor [Garrow & Associates] will convey to the Tennessee Division of Archaeology all artifacts recovered during the data recovery investigations. The contractor will also furnish the Division of Archaeology all field notes, records and photographs associated with the project.
Any human burials, historic or prehistoric, encountered during the course of the investigation shall not be moved or disturbed without a court order. If human remains are encountered, all work in the immediate area should cease, the exposed remains covered and protected and MNAA and the Division of Archaeology notified at once.”
An article describing graves found during the construction was printed in the September 25, 1992 edition of the “Nashville Banner” on page 1.
“Burial Grounds Found at Airport
By Steve Majchrzak
Banner Staff Writer
Workers at the airport’s new runway construction project off Murfreesboro Road have stumbled across what state archaeologists believe may be the unmarked burial ground for up to 500 black former state mental patients.
State archaeologists say they believe the site was used as an unmarked cemetery for black patients who died while institutionalized at Middle Tennessee Mental Health Institute between 1859 and 1932.
The runway extension project crosses Murfreesboro Road onto the grounds of the hospital.
“We think this is where they buried patients who died when their families did not want to claim their bodies,” State Archaeologist Nick Fielder says.
“Based on the size of the area identified and compactness of the grave sites, we roughly estimate there are between 400 and 500 [graves].”
Fielder said the state has no record of the burial site. “We had defined a family plot in the area,” Fielder says. “But we had not known the patient part extended out as far as it did.”
The graves appear to be unmarked. If they had been, Fielder says, those markings have long since been “obliterated.”
The grave sites sit in the shadow of the 140-year-old Middle Tennessee Mental Health Institute–previously named the “Tennessee Insane Asylum” and later “Central State Psychiatric Hospital”–where acres of nearby land have been cleared to build a replacement general aviation runway over Murfreesboro Road.
A second cemetery, believed to be for white patients, was discovered near the facility across what is now Donelson Pike, several years ago and had some markings, Fielder says.
Fielder says hospital records indicate that between 1916 and 1932 some 137 black patients were buried on hospital grounds, but the documents do not indicate where. Earlier records were apparently destroyed when a tornado destroyed part of the facility at the turn of the century.
Hospital lore told of a mass burial ground for patients, but stories varied on the location of the site, Fielder says.
The land where the airport expansion is taking place was originally owned by William Gowen, one of Nashville’s original pioneers. The tract of land changed ownership several times until being bought by the state around 1850 for the hospital.
Gowen [heirs] maintained a clause in the deed that a small tract of the land would be maintained as a family cemetery forever.
Airport contractors were working near the previously identified family cemetery two weeks ago when they came upon several new burial sites while laying in a 24-inch storm water drainage pipe.
Work in the area ceased immediately after the discovery of 6 or 7 new grave sites. Airport Spokeswoman Beth Fortune says.
Airport officials went to Davidson County Chancery Court to get permission to remove the remains and rebury them elsewhere on the property, Fortune says.
In the meantime, however, state archaeologists had identified 50 additional gravesites and estimated there may be between 400 and 500 more graves in the immediate area.
Airport officials decided to abandon plans to remove the remains and redesigned their construction plans so as not to disturb the burial grounds, Fortune says.
The storm water drain will be rerouted and several navigational aids planned for the area will be repositioned, she adds. The path of the runway itself will not be altered.
Airport officials say they will erect a marker identifying the burial area when construction is complete. “What we plan to do when we get this all done is to have the area clearly marked and preserve the area in a more dignified way,” Fortune says.
A curious notation appeared in the minutes of the Davidson County Court April 13, 1795:
“Order sheriff to expose to sale 25 acres, being part of 110 acres lying on Mill Creek and now occupied by a Mrs. Cowan, to satisfy a judgment obtained by Sampson Williams against Isaac Wilcox for the sum of Six Dollars and costs.”
It is believed that Sarah Gowen died about 1806. Shortly afterward her son, James H. Gowen offered for sale his portion of the Gowen preemption.
William Gowen and Sarah [Simpson?] Gowen are regarded as the parents of:
John Gowen born about 1745
Christianna Gowen born about 1751
James H. Gowen born about 1752
John Gowen, son of William Gowen and Sarah Gowen was born about 1745. It is believed that he was married about 1770, wife’s name possibly “Jones.”
“John Going” who resided “between the Broad and Catawba Rivers,” was named as a petit juror in Camden District, South Carolina in 1778-1779, according to “Jury List of South Carolina, 1778-1779,” by GeLee Corley Hendrick and Morn McKoy Lindsey. John Gowen drew pay for militia duty May 23, 1785 in Camden District, Fairfield County, according to “Stub Entries to Indents,” Book 2, page 199. These volumes were compiled by A. S. Salley, former state historian of South Carolina.
“John Goin” was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1786 census of Fairfield County, page 20, according to “Heads of Families, South Carolina, 1790:”
“Goin, John white male, over 16
white male, under 16
It is believed that he removed to Davidson County, Tennessee about 1790. “John McGown” was appointed to a road committee “to oversee the road from Nichols Ferry to where it joins the main road, Mansker’s Station to Heaton’s Station” January 12, 1792, according to Davidson County Court minutes.
“John Goyen, trusty and well-beloved friend of Daverson County, North Carolina [later Tennessee], gentleman” received the power of attorney of “Levi Goyen” of Fairfield County, South Carolina to sell 640 acres of land on Mill Creek in Davidson County September 17, 1792. He is regarded as a kinsman of Levi Gowen and his brother David Gowen whose land was inherited by Levi Gowen when David Gowen was killed by the Creek Indians in 1780.
According to Davidson County Land Book G-7, “640 acres on the east side of Mill Creek” were surveyed June 26, 1793 for John Gowen. William Gowen, his son, was a “chain carrier” on the surveying party which marked out the land.
John Gowen received on May 19, 1794 640 acres from the State of North Carolina on Warrant No. 350. The land lay on Mill Creek about one-half mile west of his father’s preemption site, between land grants of Ebenzer Titus. Cleve Weathers, a descendant of Nashville, identifies the section as the one which was issued to David Gowen who was killed in 1780 “in the settlement and defense of Nashville.”
The land was described in Davidson County Deed Book C, page 281:
“State of North Carolina to John Gowen . . . 640 acres on the East side of Mill Creek . . . beginning at a white walnut on the bank of Mill Creek, being the Northwest corner of James Meness’s guard right on the East boundary line of said Meness’ preemption, thence East 390 poles to a dogwood on Ebenezer Titus’s West boundary line, then north 340 poles to a hickory, thence West 164 poles to a sycamore on the bank of said creek, thence up said creek with its meanders 333 poles to a poplar on said Meness’s East boundary line, then South with said line to the beginning 120 poles.”
According to Steve Rogers, examination of the deed transactions of John Gowen suggest that he did not live on his land grant, but sold off various portions of it from 1798 to 1802, according to Deed Book D, page 378 and 416 and Deed Book E, page 173 and 357. It is assumed that John Gowen lived somewhere on his father’s preemption.
On September 19, 1795 “John Gowen of Davidson County” bought 1,920 acres of land “on the east side of Stone’s River on Spring Creek” at a sheriff’s sale.
John Gowen bought 81 acres on Stone’s River at a sheriff’s sale December 30, 1795, according to Davidson County Deed Book D, page 40. On August 5, 1803 he sold this plot for $40, according to Davidson County Deed Book F, page 462. Later in that year the land lay in the newly created Rutherford County.
John Gowen received a deed to 201 acres on Mill Creek December 30, 1797 from Jonathan Phillips, according to Davidson County Deed Book D, page 388.
On May 12, 1798 John Gowen witnessed a bill of sale of “a negro wench named Judy” from Simon McClendon to John Blackman, according to Davidson County Will Book 1, page 148.
On Tuesday, July 15, 1806 “John Goine,” administrator of the estate of James Gay deceased. returned to the Williamson County Court an inventory of the estate, according to “Williamson County, Tennessee Court Minutes, 1808-1812,” page 4. On page 5 another entry reads, “Jno. Gayne, administrator returns inventory, chattels and credits of James Gay, dcsd.”
On Tuesday, October 14, 1806 a return was made to the court of the sale of the estate of Jay Gay, deceased. On October 17 additional items in the inventory of the estate of James Gay was returned to the court.
On December 18, 1806 “John Gowan of Davidson County” purchased from Elisha Prewitt 372 acres on Cripple Creek, land that originally granted to Samuel Pearson, according to Rutherford County Deed Book E, page 425. This land adjoined that of Joseph Gowen.
In December 1806 John Gowen bought from Elisha Prewitt 372 acres of land “beginning at Joseph Gowen’s northeast corner,” according to Rutherford County deed records. “Joseph Gowen, James F. Gowen and R. Howell” witnessed the transaction. On December 18, 1806 “John Gowan of Davidson County” completed the transaction, paying Elisha Prewitt $150 for the 372 acres of land located on “Cripple Creek of Stone’s River” which was a part of a tract of land originally granted to Samuel Pearson by the state of North Carolina, probably for military services. This transaction was recorded in Rutherford County Deed Book E, page 425. “Reed Howell, Joseph Gowen and James Gowen” again were witnesses. Joseph Gowen and his son, James F. Gowen are regarded as cousins to John Gowen.
It is believed that John Gowen assisted his brother, James H. Gowen who had apparently settled north of the Cumberland River, in selling his inheritance from their father. An advertisement offering to sell the northern 240 acres of the original preemption was inserted in a Nashville newspaper in its edition of December 13, 1806. The land was described as “containing 240 acres and lying on the main road from Nashville to Jefferson [early name of Murphreesboro] sold by James H. Gowen June 2, 1807 to Daniel Vaulx, a neighbor. Daniel Vaulx was a member of Capt. Belk’s militia in its muster of 1812. Other members of this militia company at that time were Lt. William Gowen, his brother, John Gowen and Charles Crutchfield.
Daniel Vaulx and his wife, Catherine Vaulx had sons by the names of Joseph Vaulx and James Vaulx. James Vaulx in 1809 held an important position in the region as the locator of lands in the Western District. The locator system installed by North Carolina to distribute the land as Tennessee was opened for settlement was later found to be corrupt. Many of its officials were charged with bribery and land fraud.
After the death of Daniel Vaulx in 1812, his widow, Catherine Vaulx continued to live in the area with her property adjoining that of Charles Hays. Charles Hays, the father-in-law of John Jones Gowen, was the founder of Antioch Baptist Church of Antioch, Tennessee, a Nashville suburb. John Jones Gowen was buried in the Hays family Cemetery located at the rear of the home of Charles Hays.
Steve Rogers of the Tennessee Historical Commission who researched the deed record of the property wrote, “This 240-acre tract is located on the northern third of the property north of present-day Murphreesboro Road and is not a part of the Central States Hospital tract. The route of the Murfreesboro Turnpike, established in 1824, followed approximately the southern boundary, according to ‘Acts of Tennessee, 1824,’ page 148.”
John Gowen was shown as a taxpayer in Rutherford County in 1809, paying $1.10¼ on 590 acres of land. He was the only Gowen taxpayer to be assessed in the county in that year. In 1811 he paid taxes on 560 acres of land–$1.39. In 1813 he paid $1.50 tax on 560 acres of land.
It is believed that John Gowen died about 1815. Children born to John Gowen are believed to include:
William Gowen born about 1769
John Gowen born February 3, 1775
William Gowen and John Gowen, assumed to be brothers were early residents of Davidson County. Both had descendants whose names included “Jones.” John Jones Gowen was a son of John Gowen, and another John Jones Gowen was a grandson of William Gowen. “Jones B. Gowin,” born in 1873, later appeared in Crawford County, Arkansas.
William Gowen, son of John Gowen and grandson of William Gowen who received the preemption grant in Davidson County, was born about 1769, probably in South Carolina. He was brought to Ft. Nashborough, Tennessee in 1779 by his father, accompanying his grandfather and his uncle, Capt. John Rains. It is believed that William Gowen was married, wife’s name unknown, about 1792. After the birth of two sons, it is believed that his wife died.
William Gowen and his father [or brother] John Gowen participated in the defense of Buchanan’s Station in an Indian attack in 1792. An account of the battle was written in 1998 by Cleve Weathers, a descendant of Nashville, Tennessee.
“A William Goin/Gowen and a John Goin/Gowens, who were old enough to fight, were at the siege on Buchanan’s Station in Davidson County, Tennessee in September 1792. This was a famous battle at Maj. John Buchanan’s Station or Buchanan’s Fort occurring around midnight on September 30, 1792.
Word had gotten to the settlers of a large body of Indians coming from East Tennessee with apparent plans to attack them. About 15 families congregated in Buchanan’s Station for security. Most of the defenders can be identified as living to the east of Buchanan’s Station, such as the Shanes who lived about 5 miles to the east on Stones River. Widow Sarah Gowen’s house was about 1.5 miles southeast of Buchanan’s Station. Buchanan’s Station was one of the more substantial stations and was strategically located nearer to Ft. Nashboro, i.e. a place of comparative safety. Maj. John Buchanan was born at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania January 12, 1759.
This John and William Goin were, without reasonable doubt, John and William Gowen, either sons or grandsons of William and Sarah Gowen. My 3rd great-grandfather, John Gowen, born in 1775, could have been the “John” referred to, or it could have been his father, John Gowen, born about 1745, as Arlee suggests. [Arlee and I are trying to come to a concensus whether the John, born in 1775, was a son or a grandson of William and Sarah Gowen.]
The eight-page narrative written by John Buchanan Todd, who was in the fort at the time of the attack and was about 10 years old, is a little known first-hand account of the battle. John Buchanan Todd was a nephew of the owner of the fort, Maj. John Buchanan, and the son of James Todd. “The Lyman Draper Papers,” Tennessee State Library & Archives, Manuscript Accession No. 29, series XX, Vol. 6, frame 68, state in part:
“The names of the defenders of the station were Maj. John Buchanan, commander, John McCrary, James Mulherrin, James Bryant, Wm Turbull [sic], Wetherell Lattimore, Robt. Castbolt, Thomas Kennedy, Abram Kennedy, Morris O’Shane, John Tony [?sp], Geo. Davidson, Thomas Wilcox, Jos. Crabtree, John Goin [sic], Wm Goin [sic] & James Todd.”
See another account of attack in J. G. M. Ramsey’s “Annals of Tennessee,” copyrighted 1853, pub. 1860, pp. 566-67.
“An Account of the 1792 Attack on Buchanan’s Station
Knoxville, Wednesday, October 10
“On the 30th of September, about midnight, John Buchanan’s station, four miles south of Nashville [at which sundry families had collected, and fifteen gunmen] were attacked by a party of Creeks and Lower Cherokees, supposed to consist of three or four hundred.
Their approach was suspected by the running of cattle that had taken fright at them, and upon examination, they were found rapidly advancing within ten yards of the gate, and from this place and distance they received the first fire from the man who discovered them [John M’Rory]. They immediately returned the fire, and continued a very heavy and constant firing upon the station [block-houses surrounded with a stockade] for an hour, and were repulsed with considerable loss, without injuring man, woman or child in the station.
During the whole time of the attack, the Indians were never more distant than ten yards from the Block House, and often in large numbers close round the lower walls, attempting to put fire to it. One ascended the roof with a torch, where he was shot, and falling to the ground, renewed his attempts to fire the bottom logs, and was killed. The Indians fired 30 balls through a port hole or the overjuting, which lodged in the roof in the circumstances of a hat, and those sticking in the walls on the outside are innumerable.
“Upon viewing the ground next morning, it appeared, that the fellow who was shot from the roof, was a Cherokee halfbreed, of the Running Water, known by the whites by the name of Tom Turnbridge’s step son, the son of a French woman by an Indian; and there was much blood, and sign that many dead had been dragged off, and litters having been made to carry the wounded to their horses which they had left a mile from the station.
Near the block house were found, several swords, hatchets, pipes, kettles, and budgets of different Indian articles; one of the swords was a fine Spanish blade, and richly mounted in the Spanish fashion. In the morning previous to the attack, Jonathan Gee and Savard[?] Clayton were sent out as spies; and on the ground, among other articles left by the Indians, were found a handkerchief and a moccasin, known one to belong to Gee and the other to Clayton, hence it supposed they are killed.
Undoubted advices have been received that as early as the 18th of September, as many as five hundred Creeks passed the Tennessee, at the lower Cherokee towns, and below, on their way as they declared, to make war on Cumberland, and that they were joined by about one hundred Cherokees of those towns. This may have been the party that attacked Buchanan’s Station. Dreadful havoc was expected, but it is now hoped that the check they have received, will induce them to return without making further attempts upon that settlement.”
Walter T. Durham, writing in “Kasper Mansker: Cumberland Frontiersman,” stated that the defenders at Buchanan’s Station employed a small swivel cannon to terrorize the Indians. Thus the 15 defenders were able to withstand the hundreds of Indians. Kasper Mansker borrowed the cannon in 1795 when he joined the Chickasaw Indians in their battle against the Creeks. The little cannon was very decisive in defeating the Creeks.
On February 17, 1794 the Davidson County Court minutes record that “William Gowen was appointed to a road venire to review whether the road from Heaton’s old station could not come nearer to the mouth of Lick Branch than where the bridge formerly was built.”
On December 30, 1795 William Gowen received a deed to 150 acres on Stone’s River which he bought at a sheriff’s sale, according to Davidson County Deed Book D, page 38. His brother John Gowen bought 81 acres on Stone’s River at the same sale on December 30, 1795, according to Davidson County Deed Book D, page 40. John Gowen received a deed on the same day to 50 acres on Stone’s River, according to Davidson County Deed Book D, page 40. Apparently the land, which was sold for delinquent taxes, lay in adjoining plots. They received their deeds July 11, 1796 from Sheriff Nicholas Perkins Hardeman, according to Davidson County Court minutes.
The Davidson County Court set ferry rates for crossing the Cumberland River April 5, 1796, “Wagon & team–$1, Two-wheel carriage & horses–50¢, Man & horse–6¼¢, Black cattle, per head–5¢ and Hogs, per head–3¢. Price was set for “Good proof whiskey–1 shilling.”
William Gowen was mentioned as a purchaser at the estate sale of Robert McCrory, deceased, in the Davidson County Court term of April 1796, according to Davidson County Will Book 1, page 44. He served as a petit juror July 15, October 10-14, in 1796.
On February 15, 1797 William Gowen purchased 90 acres on Mill Creek from William Terrill, according to Davidson County Deed Book D, page 380. Francis B. Sappington appeared in court April 10, 1798 to prove the deed. On the same date William Gowen proved in court a deed from John Johnston to Charles Hays.
On September 1, 1797 William Gowen was commissioned a lieutenant in the Davidson County militia company commanded by Capt. John Rains, his uncle. Later that year William Gowen was married to his cousin, Martha “Patsy” Rains, daughter of Capt. John Rains and Christiana Gowen Rains, on December 3, 1797, according to Davidson County Marriage Book 1, page 28.
Martha “Patsy” Rains was born about 1773, probably in Montgomery County, Virginia or in the State of Franklin [East Tennessee]. She was brought to Davidson County by her parents about 1779. Her father took her mother and the children back to safety in Kentucky when Indian attacks threatened to kill all the settlers on the Cumberland. When hostilities subsided, Capt. Rains brought his family back to Ft. Nashborough.
She had a narrow escape from the Indians about 1790 when she and her friend, Betsy Williams, were fired upon by Indians while out riding. Martha “Patsy” Rains, riding a fast horse, escaped, but her friend Betsy Williams was killed and scalped. A. W. Putnam writing in “History of Middle Tennessee,” stated “Indians shot and killed Betsy Williams who was riding on the same horse behind Martha “Patsy” Rains.”
John Rains, Jr. gave some additional details about the incident:
“On one occasion my sister [Martha “Patsy” Rains] wished to go up to Armstrong’s Station, about seven miles from Nashville. She could not get company as pleased her, so she went alone. She got there safely. On her return a young woman [Betsy Williams] at some point desired to come along with her, and they both started on the same horse. A young man named Patton went along as a guard. A small dog became alarmed, and she desired Patton to go ahead. He did so, and the Indians fired at the party. My sister turned her horse and tried to make him leap the fence, but he failed the first trial. The young woman being behind was hit by the Indians and fell off. The horse then leaping the fence, my sister escaped. As she looked behind her, she saw the Indians in the act of seizing her companion, whom they killed. My sister kept on to Armstrong’s Station, and the people being alarmed, went back and found the poor girl’s body. Patton ran off in another direction and escaped in safety.”
It is believed that Martha “Patsy” Rains Gowen died about 1799, perhaps in childbirth.
North Carolina Land Grants in Tennessee
Davidson County Tennessee 1782:
1. Frederick Stump
2. Daniel Stump
3. Jacob Williams
4. John Montgomery
5. John Rains
Davidson County Tennessee 1783:
6. Daniel Hogan
7. Amos Heaton
8. Benjamin Drake Jr.
9. David Rounsivale
10. Henry Ramsey
11. Robert Espy
12. The Heirs of William Cooper
13. John Manifee
14. Benjamin Logan
15. Daniel Dunkham
16. James Espy
17-18. Isaac Johnston
19-20. Hadin Wells
21. William Loggins
22. Jacob Jones
23. Heirs of Nicholas Gentrey
24. John Brown
25. David Love
26. Dennis Condry
27. William Gowen
28. Isaac Lindsay
29. James Mayfield
30. Andrew Hill
31. Humphrey Hogan
32. Richard Dodge
33. Ebenezar Titus
34. Ephraim McLain
35. James Bradley
36. William Green
37. John Barrow
38. Henry Turney
39. John Bohannan Jr
40. Isaac Drake
41. Zachariah White
42. Samuel Barton
43. Samuel Wilson
44. John Hamilton
45. Francis Hodge
46. William Johnston
47. John Evans
48. John Milner
49. Roland Maddison
50. Michael Shaver
51. John Thomas
52. Joseph Hendricks
53. Thomas Edmundson
55. William Campbell
56. Hugh McGary
57. James Ray
58. Samuel Walker
59. George Purtle
60. Moses Rentfro
61. Robert Dishe
62. William Johnston
63. Samuel Scott
64. Daniel Johnston
65. William Overall
66. Benjamin Drake
67. Jonathan Drake
68. William Gillaspie
69. William Bradshaw
70. Hugh McGray
71. George Daugherty
72. Daniel Chambers
73. William Griggin
74. Roger Topp
75. Chandler McCarthney
76. John Henderson
77. George Espy
78. James McAdon
79. Arthur McAdon
80. Philip Pushow
81. Hugh Henry Jr.
82. David Henry
83. John Crew
84. John Dunham
85. Bartaloff Searsey
86. Cornelius Riddle
87. Peter Rentfro
88. Samuel McCutchin
89. Samuel Ewing
90. Peter McCutchin
91. Lewis Deweese
92. John Boyd
93. Joseph Daugherty
94. John Holliday
95. William Leighton
96. John Caffrey
97. Isaac Rentfro
98. Thomas Davis
99. William Rentfro
100. John Evand
101. John Cowen
102. James Crutchfield
103. Charles Campbell
104. John McVey
105. William Stern
106. James Robertson
107. John Robertson
108. William Russell
109. William Rentfro
110. Joseph Hays
111. Samuel Moore
113. John Cordry
114. Solomon White
115. John Drake Sr.
116. Charles Metcalf
117. Samuel Hays
118. Archibald McNeal
119. John Searsey
120. Ralph Trammell
121. Martin Holden
122. William Neally
123. John Donoson
124. Samuel Deeson
125. Samuel McMurry
126. William Purnell
127. Robert Daugherty
128. Richard Sims
129. Richard Gross
130. John Phack
131. Edward Hogan
132. Isaac Lucas
133. Joseph Reed
134. Julius Sanders
135. Samuel Morrow
136. Abel Gower
137. Samuel Price
138. Moses Winters
139. James Farris
140. Hugh Hays
141. Nathaniel Hays
142. John Caywood
143. William Grimes
144. James Foster
145. Elijah Gower
146. James Harwood
147. Meredith Rains
148. John Hamilton
149. Thomas Jones Gwin
150. John Donolson Sr.
151. William McMurry
152. Phillip Mason
153. Nicholas Trammell
154. James Freeland
155. Thomas Hamilton
156. Zachariah Green
157. James Franklin
158. Samuel Shelton
159. Jesse Maxfield
160. Evan Evans
161. David Maxfield
162. John Turner
163. Peter Looney
164. Patrick Quigby
165. David Looney
166. Robert Cartwright
167. George Neally
168. Jacob Kimberlin
169. Thomas Gillespie
170. David Mitchell Jr.
171. Michael Kimberlin
172. Jacob Steel
173. John Galloway
174. Dennis Clark
175. Ephraim Drake, Daniel Durham
176. Hugh Simpson
177. Samuel Sanders
178. Martin King
179. David Turner
180. William Overall
181. Henry Houdishall
182. Daniel Garrett
183. William Moor
184. James McKean
185. Joseph Milligan
186. James Green
187. Andrew Thomas
188. Alexander Thompson
189. William Collinsworth
190. Abraham Jones
191. John Withers
192. Benjamin Porter
193. John Blackamoor
194. Nathan Turpin
195. Daniel Chambers
196. James Crockett
197. Archilus Holloway
198. Thomas Pharris
199. William Summers
200. George Newell
201. James Clendenning
202. Willliam Hood
203. William Henry
204. William Taylor
205. Philip Catron
206. Peter Catron
207. Jonathan & John Drake
208. Andrew Rule
209. Edward Larymone
210. Jonathan Green
211. David Shannon
212. Henry Watkins
213. John Higginson
214. Berry Caywood
215. William Elliss
216. John Cockrell
217. John Kissinger
218. Mark Robinson
219. Nathan Faris
220. Joshua Pennick
221. Isaac Pennick
222. Roger Topp
223. William Snody
224. Edward Tomlinson
225. Michael Stone
226. William Morris
227. William Galloway
228. James Cunningham
229. Henry Highland
230. Thomas Jones
231. James Rentfro
232. John Donolson
233. Robert Neeley
234. William Fletcher
235. John Hollis
236. Benjamin Drake
237. Robert Russell
238. Andrew Steel
239. Thomas Thompson
240. Absolem Chessom
241. Magness McDonald
242. Lawrence Stevens
243. Jacob Stevens
244. William Simpson
245. Jonathan Jennings
246. William Cocke
247. Michael Larrick
248. John Wilson
249. Thomas Kilgore
250. Alexander Bohannan
251. John Fulkinson
252. Rowland Middison
253. Robert Gwans
254. Edward Carvin
255. Samuel Habberd
256. Hugh Henry
257. George Mancher
258. William Donehoe
259. Andrew Ewing
260. David Gowen
261. John Mulherrin
262. Jesse Boitstone
263. James Robinson
264. William Price
265. Maurice Shane
266. John Sawyer
267. John Kennedy
268. Solomon Turpin
269. Christopher Funkhouser
270. George Carlyle
271. James Harris
272. Joseph Rentfro
273. John Hobson
274. James Hollice
275. John Wilson
276. John Cockrell
277. John King
278. George Leeper
279. Andrew Kincannon
280. William McCormack
281. Robert Lucas
282. Isaac Shelby
283. Lewis Crane
284. William Stewart
285. Peter Looney
286. Absolom Thompson
287. Jesse Benton
288. John Hughes
289. David Looney
290. John Deeson
291. Thomas Woodard
292. Simon Woodard
293. Edward Swanson
294. John Phillips
295. Frederick Edwards
296. William Frame
297. Christopher Beeley
298. Nicholas Conrad
299. Philip Conrad
300. Jennitt John -? Reverse
301. Ezekiel Douglass
302. William McMurry
303. Edward Bradley
304. Abraham Simaster
305. Ephraim Pratt
306. Morgan Osborne
307. Henry Hieory
308. William Goosney
309. William Purnell
310. Charles Thompson
311. John Miller
312. Timothy Terrill
313. James Robinson
314. John Barnard
315. Evan Baker
316. John Gibson
317. Joseph Hannah
318. Joel Hobbles
319. James Cook
320. Elijah Tarress
321. Nathaniel Henderson
322. John Sevill
323. Pleasant Henderson
324. Titus Murry
325. George Kannady
326. Jonathan Anthony
327. Hugh Leeper
328. Michael Castills
329. Bamah Byrant
330. James Anthony
331. Isaac Henry
332. John Estis
333. Daniel Frazier
334. Edmund Jennings
335. John Lamsden
336. Moses Webb
337. Moses Pharris
338. John White
339. John Cotton
340. Casper Mansher
341. David Fain
342. John Anderson
343. Jesse Maxey
344. John Gilkey
345. Solomon Phillips
346. Francis Armstrong
347. William Hinson
348. Isaac Kitterell
349. Isaac Lefeveor
350. John James
351. Thomas Sharpe
352. Daniel Smith
354-354. James Shaw
355. Henry Lovell
356. Elmore Douglass
357. John Poe
358. James Freeland
359. James Leeper
360. Mark Robinson
361. James Freeland
362. Isham Clayton
363. Elias Mires
364. Thomas Hainey
365. Henry O’Hara
366. George Green
367. Ephraim Payton
368. Burgess White
369. Daniel Mungle
370. Stephen Rhea
371. Sampson Wilson
372. Jarrott Manifee
373. John Morgan
374. John Dunkam
375. John Craig
376. William Craig
377. Henry Rule
378. Henry Blackmore
379. William Ashert
380. William McGouch
381. Charles Robinson
382. James Todd
383. John Todd
384. Roger Topp
385. Evan Baker
386. Nathaniel Hart
387. Charles Brantley
388. Alexander Allison
389. Charles Bowen
390. William Bailey
391. William Bowen
392. William Stewart
393. Matthew Pain
394. Benjamin Pettit
395. George Paine
396. Roger Topp
397. Sampson Sawyer
398. William Parker
399. John Blackmore
400. Elmore Douglass
401. Martin Hardin
402. David Craig
403. Musther McAboy
404. William Neely
405. William White
406. John Henrdricks
407. James Turpin
408. James McGavock
409. William Burgess
410. Thomas Burgess
411. Elijah Robinson
412. Andrew Crockett
413. Jamess Tolar
414. Archibald Bohanan
415. Henry Hardin
416. Abraham Price
417. Abraham Mulherrin
418. James Denton
419. Spilly Coleman
420. David Shelton
421. Nicholas Baker
422. Richard Cox
423. Matthew Anderson
424. James Malding
425. William Newing
426. Robert Roseberry
427. William McWhirter
428. William Montgomery
429. John McMurtry
430. James Gwins
431. Charles Peyton
432. Henry Daugherty
433. William Mitchell
434. William Moore
435. James Thompson
436. Joseph Jackson
437. James Brown
438. Ebenezar Titus
439. John Holt
440. James Crockett
441. James Hays
442. James Lawless
443. Thomas Kilgore
444. Thomas Miggerson
445. Hugh Logan
446. James Shanklin
447. William Moore
448. John Shockley
449. Elijah Robinson
450. Edward Cox
451. Joseph Blackford
452. Joseph Bean
453-454. Isaac Bledsoe
455. Perry Graves
456. Ebenezar Mann
457. James Smith
458. James Ray
459. Lewis Reeland (Freeland?)
460. Ralph Wilson
461. William Ray
462. William Collier
463. James Robinson
464. Richard Henderson
465. Robert Looney
466. Thomas Spencer
467. Charles Deneth
468. William Lucas
469. John Phillips
470. Thomas Maxwell
471. John Crockett
472. Richard Logan
473. John Owens
474. Samuel Newell
475. Anthony Bledsoe
476. Horatio Rolls
477. John Fletcher
478. Jordon Gibson
479. George Freeland
480. John Calloway
481. Anthony Bledsoe
482. Archibald Taylor
483. Robert Montgomery
484. Joseph Moseley
Davidson County, Tennessee at its founding in 1783 was known as Miro District, North Carolina. In 1787 it was referred to as the District of Tennessee. In 1794 when it was ceded to the United States, it was referred to as “Territory of the United States, south of the River Ohio.” In 1796 it was known as the State of Tennessee.
Will Goens, negro was married December 7, 1916 to Addie Mae Davis, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Will Goens and Addie Mae Davis Goens are unknown.
Harry Goin, age 25, was married June 3, 1921 to Mary Wilkinson, according to Davidson County marriage records. Of Harry Goin and Mary Wilkinson Goin nothing more is known.
Daniel T. Goines requested a license to marry Ellen E. Hooberry December 20, 1864. No return was made of the license.
Charles Going was married to Harriett Winford August 28, 1888, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Charles Going and Harriett Winford Going are unknown.
David W. Going, who was born in Ireland in 1826, appeared in the 1850 census of Davidson County, Civil District 13, Household No. 200-200. His age was given as 24.
John Going was enumerated as the head of a household recorded in the 1850 census of Davidson County, Civil District 22, city of Nashville, Household No. 100-231. The family was recorded as:
“Going, John 35, born in TN, farmer
Jane 38, born in TN
Mary E. 8, born in Illinois
Sarah J. 7, born in TN
Rosa A. 5, born in TN
William 3, born in TN
John 2, born in TN”
Adjoining the household of John Going was that of William Going recorded in the 1850 census of Davidson County, Civil District 22, city of Nashville, Household No. 100-102. The family was recorded as:
“Going, William 37, born in TN, farmer
Rachel 34, born in TN
Elizabeth A. 12, born in TN
Stephen A. 10, born in TN
Hugh 5, born in TN
Tabitha A. 1, born in TN”
Apparently the household appeared a second time in the 1850 census in McMinn County, Tennessee, Household 1518-662:
“Goins, William 29, born in North Carolina
Rachel 28, born in TN
[See William Goins, Rutherford County, Tennessee for an interesting parallel.]
Adjoining the household of William Going was that of Alfred Going recorded in the 1850 census of Davidson County, Civil District 22, city of Nashville, Household No. 99-101. The family was recorded as:
“Going, Alfred 22, farmer, born in TN
Rhoda 21, born in TN
Isaac 3, born in TN”
Alfred Going had brothers by the names of Albert Goings, Joseph Going and S. Going, according to Sherrill Bourn.
Alfred Going had obtained a license October 16, 1847 to marry Rhoda Darows, according to Davidson County marriage records. No return was made of the license.
Alfred Going removed to Kentucky about 1858. They were enumerated in the 1860 census of Graves County in the southeast corner of Kentucky on the Tennessee state line:
“Going, Alfred 32, born in TN
Rhoda 31, born in TN
Isaac 13, born in TN
Eliza 8, born in TN
Elizabeth 6, born in TN
Margaret 5, born in TN
Sarah 4, born in TN
Polly Ann 1, born in KY”
Children born to Alfred Going and Rhoda Darows Going include:
Isaac Going born about 1847
Eliza Going born about 1851
Elizabeth Going born about 1853
Margaret Going born about 1855
Sarah Going born about 1857
Polly Ann Going born about 1859
A Polly Ann Going who was born in Graves County May 12, 1861 was married in Caledonia, Illinois to Nicholas Henry Dover as his second wife, according to Sherrill Bourn.
Alexander Goings, was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1850 census of Davidson County:
“Goings, Alexander 28, born in TN, farmer
Sarah E. 28, born in TN
Nancy J. 9, born in Illinois
Daniel T. 7, born in Illinois
Goings, Elizabeth 60, born in NC, mother
James 10, born in TN
Andrew 20, born in TN, laborer
Thomas 18, born in TN, laborer”
“Alexander Gown” was enumerated as the head of Household 694-668 in the 1860 census of Davidson County, 21st Civil District, near Goodlettsville, Tennessee:
“Gown, Alexander 45, born in NC, farmer
Sarah 35, born in TN
Nancy 18, born in TN
Daniel 16, born in TN
James 14, born in TN
Hugh 11, born in TN
Rosanna 9, born in TN”
Fannie Ethel Goings, age 36, was married May 7, 1928 to George Gilbert Noel, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Will T. Goings, age 35, 5506 New York Avenue, Nashville was married July 16, 1927 to Matilla Barcliff, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Will T. Goings and Matilla Barcliff Goings are unknown.
Ambrose Goins was named as a juror April 5, 1786, according to Davidson County Court minutes
Charles C. Goins was married September 21, 1886 to Alice Burnett, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Charles C. Goins and Alice Burnett Goins are unknown.
Charles C. Goins died in 1910 in Davidson County according to “Tennessee Deaths,” record number 16980.
Drusilla Goins was enumerated in the 1880 census of Davidson County living in a boarding house. She was recorded as “Drusilla Goins, 41, born in TN, father born in MO.”
John Goins, age 18, 1040 29th Avenue North, Nashville, was married December 24, 1919 to Dollie Evans, age 20, Nashville, according to Davidson County marriage records. Of John Goins and Dollie Evans Goins nothing more is known.
A license was issued October 4, 1919 for the marriage of Miss Ollie Goins, age 18, 1040 29th Avenue North, Nashville to Earnest J. Marsh, age 27, Pegram Street, Nashville, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Ollie Goins, age 19, was married May 5, 1920 to Anest Veliotis, age 22, 212 4th Avenue North, Nashville, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Tommie Goins, age 21, 1040 29th Avenue North, Nashville was married October 28, 1919 to Irma Buckinhaur, age 19, according to Davidson county marriage records. Children born to Tommie Goins and Irma Buckinhaur Goins are unknown.
May Tillie Goins, age 20, was married October 9, 1928 to William Buford, age 21, according to Davidson County marriage records.
“Andrew R. Gooan, Esq. died in Marshall County, Mississippi on Saturday, 28th ultimate, according to the July 12, 1841 edition of “The Nashville Whig.”
William Gowa[n?] was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1850 census of Davidson County, Household 940-668:
“Gowa[n?] William 38, born in TN
Lucy 37, born in TN
Elizabeth Gowan was enumerated as the head of Household 369-365, 10th Civil District in the 1860 census of Davidson County:
Gowan, Elizabeth 55, born in Ireland, $1,000 real estate
Helen 35, born in NC
James 23, born in GA
Lucina 18, born in GA
Francis 17, born in GA, male”
Ernest Gowan was married May 18, 1910 to Delia Watson, according to Davidson County marriage records. Jesse O’Neal was bondsman for Ernest Gowan and Delia Watson Gowan.
Mrs. Fannie Goodner Gowan, negro, daughter of George Goodner and Vinnie Smith Goodner, was born in 1855 in Tennessee. In 1915 she lived at 177 Filmore in Nashville. She died there December 20, 1915, age about 60, of “para-pelegra and valvular heart trouble,” according to Tennessee BVS Death Certificate 522 signed by L. P. Johnson, M.D. She was buried in Greenwood Cemetery, according to Mack Gowan, informant of 81 Green Street, rear, Nashville.
Fannie D. Gowan was married to T. C. Payne January 27, 1865, according to Davidson County marriage records.
George A. Gowan was born about 1860 of parents unknown. He was married about 1890 to Edith Meadows, daughter of John Meadows and Sarah Davis Meadows, who was born February 27, 1868 in Tennessee. He died about 1914.
In 1932 Edith Meadows Gowan lived at 1201 Woodland Street in Nashville with her younger son, “G. G. Gowan.” She died there December 13, 1932, at age 64 of pneumonia and influenza, according to Tennessee DVS Death Certificate No. 25172 signed by R. N. Hubert, M.D. She was buried in Mt Olive Cemetery under the direction of Wiles Funeral Home, according to “G. G. Gowan, informant of 1201 Woodland.”
The will of Edith Meadows Gowan was probated in Davidson County January 16, 1933. In her will she named two sons, “Cody Clemens Gowan and G. G. Gowan.”
Children born to George A. Gowan and Edith Meadows Gowan include:
Cody Clemens Gowan born about 1887
George Grady Gowan born about 1890
Cody Clemens Gowan, son of George A. Gowan and Editth Meadows Gowan, was born about 1887, probably in Davidson County. He died in Jefferson County, Kentucky September 6, 1934. His will, probated March 17, 1936, named his widow, Ida Mary Gowan.
George Grady Gowan, son of George A. Gowan and Edith Meadows Gowan, was born about 1890, probably in Davidson County. He was mentioned in the “Nashville Banner” in its edition of January 16, 1918:
“In an article used in Sunday’s Banner in connection with a photograph of the Hawaiian Quartette, it was stated that three of these young men have displayed real patriotism by enlisting with Uncle Sam’s fighting forces. It might have been said that all four of the members of this popular musical aggregation have displayed the real spirit, since Grady Gowan, the only one who is not yet in service, made every effort to gain admission. Being with only one hand, he was rejected upon his application recently.
No reflection upon Mr. Gowan was meant, and the Banner sincerely regrets the unfortunate phrasing of the news matter accompanying the picture. Mr. Gowan is well known in this city and is an efficient travelling salesman for Armour & Company.”
George Grady Gowan, age 27, 1201 Woodland, Nashville, was married May 29, 1918 to Frances Macon Hunter, age 21, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to George Grady Gowan and Frances Macon Hunter Gowan are unknown.
Grace Gowan was married May 6, 1943 to Andrew Peal, 506 Hogan Street, Nashville, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Henry Gowan, negro, son of Clay Gowan, was born in Tennessee in October 1882. In 1924 he was an unmarried laborer living in Nashville at 140 Lewis Street. He died April 7, 1924 of an organic heart condition, according to Tennessee BVS Death Certificate No. 290 signed by G. H. Martin, M.D. He was buried in Greenwood Cemetery, according to Mrs. Jennie Hodge of 140 Lewis Street, informant.
Howard R. Gowan, 178 Kenner Avenue, Nashville, Tennessee was a student at Southern Methodist University living at 4222 Mt. Royal Street, Dallas, Texas in 1948.
On May 16, 1956 a Howard R. Gowan and his wife, Evelyn R. Gowan received a warranty deed from Better-Bilt Homes, Inc., to a lot in Elroy Heights, Arlington, Texas, according to Tarrant County Deed Book 2990, page 595.
On February 4, 1965 Howard R. Gowan and Evelyn R. Gowan received a tax release from the United States of America on a balance of $578.79 according to Tarrant County Deed Book 4027, page 641. They lived at 1914 Menefee Drive, Grand Prairie, Texas. They continued at the same address in 1972 and 1973, according to the 1973 city directory of Arlington. In 1973 Howard R. Gowan was listed as a department head at LTV Corporation.
James Gowan, age 42, was enumerated in the 1870 census of Davidson County, page 371.
James M. Gowan was enumerated as the head of Household 1011-986 in the 1860 census of Davidson County, 13th Civil District:
“Gowan, James M. 25, born in Scotland, painter
Harriett 22, born in England
Jane 2, born in Canada
Agnes 1, born in Canada”
Joseph Miel Gowan, Jr, age 20, was married May 12, 1949 to Ada Willene Bone, age 20, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Joseph Miel Gowan, Jr, and Ada Willene Bone Gowan are unknown.
Mark Gowan lived at 2866 Sugar Tree Road, according to the 1971 Nashville telephone directory.
Minerve Gowan was married June 20, 1825 to Blackman Hays, according to “Davidson County, Tennessee Marriages, 1788-1850.”
Naomi M. Gowan lived at Madison Academy Apartments, according to the 1971 Nashville telephone directory.
Robert L. Gowan was born in May 1870. He was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1900 census of Nashville, Tennessee, living on Prospect Avenue. He was recorded in Enumeration District 107, page 11 as:
“Gowan, Robert L. 30, born in May 1870 in TN
Laura L. 31, born in December 1868 in TN
Vada G. 10, born in Nov. 1889 in TN
James R. 6, born in December 1893 in TN
Martha J. 3, born in March 1896 in TN”
William Gowan, negro, was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1900 census of Davidson County, Enumeration District 106, page 26, living at 629 Wood Street:
“Gowan, William 40, born March 1860, TN, negro
Maggie 24, born August 1875, TN, wife
Samuel S. 5/12, born January 1900, son
George 16, born March 1884, son
Harrison 10, born October 1889, son
Ernest 13, born April 1887, son
Carrie 7, born Nov. 1892, daughter
Mary 3, born April 1897, daughter”
John W. Gowans was born in 1875, probably at Nashville. He was married May 30, 1900 to Clara F. Bell, age 23, according to Davidson County Marriage License No. 22906. Clara F. Bell Gowans, who was born in 1877, died in 1918. Her will was probated November 5, 1918. It named her husband, John W. Gowans, as executor.
He was married second to Lula Mae Vaughn, January 29, 1921, according to Davidson County Marriage License 24865. The groom, who was 46, lived at 309 South 17th Street. The bride was 37.
John W. Gowans died in Nashville in 1930, at age 55, and his will, written December 10, 1929, was probated November 13, 1930. His will named his second wife, Lula May Vaughn Gowans and two sons, James M. Gowans and Ronald H. Gowans.
John W. Gowans and Clara F. Bell Gowans were buried in Spring Hill Cemetery, Harding Lot, beside the grave of W. O. Gowan, according to “Tombstone Inscriptions & Manuscripts” by Jeanette Tillotson Acklen.
James M. Gowans, son of John W. Gowans and Clara F. Bell Gowans, was born in 1904, probably in Nashville. He was living with his parents at 309 South 17th Street, Nashville, when he was married to Janie Mai Allen, age 24, January 26, 1925, according to Davidson County Marriage License No. 34959. Of James M. Gowans and Janie Mai Allen Gowans nothing more is known.
Ronald H. Gowans, son of John W. Gowans, was mentioned in the will of his father who died in 1930.
Lillian Erin Gowans, age 37, was married September 25, 1959 to Robert Lee Warrick, age 41, according to Davidson County marriage records. Both lived on Route 2, Smyrna, Tennessee.
R. H. Gowans lived at 216 Linda Line, Madison, Tennessee, according to the 1971 telephone directory of Nashville.
Mrs. Willene Gowans, Miss Connie Gowans and J. M. Gowans, Jr. lived at 2608 Traughbor Drive, Nashville, according to the 1959 telephone directory.
Alexander C. Gowen was married August 23, 1838 to Caroline C. Smith, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Alexander C. Gowen and Caroline C. Smith Gowen are unknown.
Alfred Gowen was married October 16, 1847 to Rhoda Darows, according to “Davidson County, Tennessee Marriages, 1788-1850.” Children born to Alfred Gowen and Rhoda Darows are unknown.
Amanda M. Gowen was married December 129, 1824 to Albert G. Dunn by Rev. William Hume, V.D.M, according to “Davidson County, Tennessee Marriages, 1788-1850.”
Andrew Gowen, “works at 185 South Market Street, home on Gay near Clay,” appeared in the 1877 edition of the Nashville city directory.
Annie Elizabeth Gowen, age 19, was married to Clifton Parrish, age 20, March 30, 1918, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Benjamin A. Gowen and his wife, Bettie Gowen appeared in the 1922 and 1924 editions of the Nashville city directory. He was listed as a “rural carrier, Franksley Avenue, 4E Nolensville Road.”
Billy R. Gowen lived at 3911 Murphy Road, according to the 1959 telephone directory of Nashville.
Billy S. Gowen lived at 206 Bonnarding Drive, according to the 1971 telephone directory of Nashville.
C. Henry Gowen, “a clerk, 109 Union Avenue, boards at 20 North High, according to the 1885 edition of the Nashville city directory. In 1888 he reappeared as “C. Henry Gowen, salesman, 508 Church Street, boards at 153 North Summer.” The 1891 and 1892 editions carried “Henry Gowen, clerk, 403 Church Street, boards at 208 North Vine. In 1895 the insertion read, “C. Henry Gowen, salesman, 403 Church Street. In 1896 “Henry C. Gowen, clerk 403 Church Street, boards at 143 North Vine” appeared. In 1897 the listing was carried “Henry Gowen, Jr, clerk, 403 Church Street, boards at 204 North High. In the 1910 directory he appeared as “Henry Gowen, Jr, home, Caldwell Lane.”
Caroline Gowen was married about 1850 to William Hamlett, according to “Davidson County, Tennessee Marriages, 1838-1863.”
Charles Gowen, “switchman, North Carolina and St. Louis Railroad,” was listed in the 1892 city directory of Nashville.
Clinton Gowen was recorded as the head of Household 1035-1008 in the 1860 census of Davidson County, 13th Civil District:
“Gowen, Clinton 25, born in TN, carpenter
Martha 22, born in TN
William 4, born in TN
John 1, born in TN”
David Gowen, a negro farmer, was enumerated in the 1850 census of Davidson County. The household was number 228. David Gowen was 60. He was a farmer, born in Tennessee, living in the household of Venus Burnett, negro.
E. R. Gowen, “works at corner of Clinton & Clay,” appeared in the 1885 city directory of Nashville. In the 1886 edition, Joseph Gowen, “works at the corner of Clinton & Clay,” was listed.
Ed Gowen, negro, was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1880 census of Davidson County, Enumeration District 67, page 7, Civil District 7. The household was recorded as:
“Gowen, Ed 25, born in TN, black
Masida 23, born in TN
Moses 6, born in TN
Sam 4, born in TN
William 2, born in TN”
Moses Gowen, negro, son of Ed Gowen and Masida Gowen was born in 1874 in Davidson County. He appeared in his father’s household in the 1880 census as a six-year-old.
Sam Gowen, negro, son of Ed Gowen and Masida Gowen was born in 1876 in Davidson County. He appeared in his father’s household in the 1880 census of Davidson County as a four-year-old. Sam Gowen was married to Mary Blackman December 24, 1898, according to Davidson County marriage records. Sam Gowen and Mary Blackman Gowen appeared on the 1900 census of Davidson County, Enumeration District 124, page 7, Ninth Civil District:
“Gowen, Sam 23, born in TN in February 1877
Mary 22, born in TN in April 1879
William Gowen, negro, son of Ed Gowen and Masida Gowen was born in 1878 in Davidson County. He appeared in his father’s household in the 1880 census of Davidson County as a two-year-old. William Gowen was married to Maggie Hughes August 2, 1897, according to Davidson County Marriage records. Of William Gowen and Maggie Hughes Gowen nothing more is known.
Edward Gowen, negro, was married to Jane Buchanan May 11, 1866, according to Davidson County marriage records. Of Edward Gowen and Jane Buchanan Gowen nothing more is known.
Edmund Gowen, negro, was married June 18, 1873 to Matilda Maxwell, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Edmund Gowen and Matilda Maxwell Gowen are unknown.
Elisha Gowen, negro, was married April 13, 1866 to Maria Hamilton, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Elisha Gowen and Maria Hamilton Gowen are unknown.
Elizabeth K. “Betsy” Gowen was “born August 29, 1811–died 1861,” according to a bible owned by Mrs. E. E. Patterson of Nashville.
Elizabeth S. Gowen, “widow of John D. Gowen, home at 157 North Spruce,” appeared in the 1872 city directory of Nashville. She reappeared in the 1874, 1877 and 1878 editions of the directory living at the same address.
Her son, John W. Gowen, “printer at 48 Union Avenue” boarded with his mother at 157 North Spruce, according to the 1872 edition of the directory. He reappeared at the same address in the 1874 edition as “John W. H. Gowen, pressman, works at 48 Union Avenue. In the 1877 and 1878 editions he appeared at the same address.
Edwin J. Gowen, believed to be another son of Elizabeth S. Gowen was listed in the 1877 edition of the directory as a clerk at “32 North College, boards at 157 North Spruce.” He did not appear in later editions.
Ethel Gowen was married October 27, 1908 to Jesse Fulton according to Davidson County Marriage Book 25.
Evard Gowen, “works at Nash Cotton Mills,” appeared in the 1887 edition of the city directory.
F. R. Gowen received a deed to a lot at High and Broad streets in Nashville from Benjamin H. Sheppard in April 1850, according to Davidson County Deed Book 14, page 79.
Fanny Gowen, a mulatto domestic servant was living in the household of Sarah M. Corbett in 1880, according to the Davidson County census in District 18:
Corbett, Sarah M. 51, house keeper, born in KY,
father born in VA, mother
born in SC
Eugene 30, son, wholesale hardware,
born in TN, father born in TN,
mother born in KY
Jo-Ella 21, daughter-in-law, born in TN,
father born in TN, mother
born in TN
William B. 27, son, born in TN, father born
in TN, mother born in KY
Macey 23, son, clerk in iron store, born
in TN, father born in TN,
mother born in KY
Frank 17, son, born in TN, father born
in TN, father born in TN,
mother born in TN
Robert 16, son, born in TN, father born
In TN, mother born in TN
Gowen, Fanny 22, mulatto, domestic servant,
born in TN, father born in TN,
mother born in TN”
G. Haskell Gowen was married November 14, 1911 to May Lee Gower “of 324 6th Avenue North, Nashville,” according to Davidson County marriage records.
Haskell Gowen, age 56, 1831 Primrose Avenue, Nashville, was married December 23, 1949 to Mittie Creola Scudder, age 38, 105 Duling Avenue, Nashville, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to G. Haskell Gowen, May Lee Gower Gowen and Mittie Creola Scudder Gowen are unknown.
Henry Gowen, Jr. was married to Sara D. McEwen September 8, 1904, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Henry Gowen, Jr. and Sara D. McEwen Gowen are unknown.
I. M. Gowen received a deed from C. V. Heath to property January 8, 1925, according to Davidson County deed records.
J. J. Gowen, “clerk and master” of a lodge received a deed to a lot on Lebanon Pike in Nashville January 29, 1877, according to Davidson County deed records.
J. M. Gowen was married July 22, 1888 to Lula Burton, according to Davidson County marriage records. Of J. M. Gowen and Lula Burton Gowen nothing more is known.
James G. Gowen was married in 1887 to Blanche M. Burnum, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to James G. Gowen and Blanche M. Burnum Gowen are unknown.
Nellie Louise Gowen, age 36, 1018 Acklen Avenue, Nashville was married October 17, 1932 to William J. Colson, age 39, according to Davidson County marriage records.
John Gowen was married to Lydia Shute October 30, 1801, according to “Davidson County, Tennessee Marriages, 1788-1850.”
John Gowen was enumerated in the 1850 [1860?] census of Davidson County, city of Nashville, in the household of William R. Hennesbro, No. 370-347, Civil District 22:
“Gowen, John 22, born in TN, merchant”
John Gowen was married October 11, 1860 to Julia Ann T. Williams, according to Davidson County marriage records. Of John Gowen and Julia Ann T. Williams Gowen nothing more is known.
John Gowen, laborer, age 21, was living in the household of Harriett Powell, according to the 1860 census of Davidson County, page 419.
John Gowen appeared in the 1887 city directory of Nashville, and his business was described as “wood and coal, Jefferson, north of Clay.”
John H. Gowen was married January 13, 1852 to Minerva J. Mences, according to “Davidson County Marriages, “1838-1863.”. Children born to John Gowen and Minerva J. Mences Gowen are unknown.
John J. Gowen was married May 5, 1823 to Tabitha Hays, according to “Davidson County, Tennessee Marriages, 1788-1850.” Children born to John J. Gowen and Tabitha Hays Gowen are unknown.
Jordan M. Gowen, a dancing master, was enumerated as the head of Household 862-842, 13th Civil District in the 1860 census of Davidson County:
“Gowen, Jordan M. 53, born in TN, dancing
master, $1,500 real estate,
$600 personal property
Mary 50, born in Alabama
Thompson 12, born in Alabama”
Joseph Gowen received a deed December 23, 1797 to 126 acres on Mill Creek from John Buchanan, according to Davidson County Deed Book D, page 311. He received another deed to 100 acres on Mill Creek from William Thomas September 5, 1801, according to Davidson County Deed Book E, page 337.
Joseph Gowen was listed in the 1887 edition of the Nashville city directory as a “fireman, North Carolina & St. Louis Railroad.”
Josephine Gowen, age 18, Smyrna, Tennessee was married October 25, 1948 to Walter Lee Brewer, age 19, LaVergne, Tennessee, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Lorenzo D. Gowen was married December 6, 1893 to Danie A. Byers, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Lorenzo D. Gowen and Danie A. Byers Gowen are unknown.
Louise Gowen, negro, was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1880 census of Davidson County, Enumeration District 77, page 5, Civil District 18. The household was rendered as:
“Gowen, Louise 60, born in TN
Wesley 28, born in TN, son
Alice 30, born in TN, daughter-in-law
Bettie 9, born in TN, granddaughter
Marie 6, born in TN, granddaughter
Lewis A. 4, born in TN, grandson
John Ella 3, born in TN, granddaughter
Harvey 3/12, born in TN, grandson”
Lucille Gowen, age 19, Tullahoma, Tennessee was married December 26, 1947 to Cleveland Shearin, Shelbyville, Tennessee, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Lucy Ann Gowen was married March 14, 1839 to George W. Shuester, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Miss M. Gowen [possibly M. Pocahontas Gowen] appeared in the 1872 edition of the Nashville city directory.
Mack Gowen, negro was married September 25, 1901 to Fannie M. Williams, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Mack Gowen and Fannie M. Williams Gowen are unknown.
A license was purchased September 29, 1947 for Marianne Gowen, age 18, to marry John Marion Thrash, Jr, age 20, 2819 Sharondale Drive, Nashville, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Marianne Gowen, age 26, 239 Mereclar Street, Nashville was married December 21, 1955 to Bailey N. Abernathy, age 27, 809 Brookside Drive, Nashville, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Martin Gowen was enumerated in the 1860 census of Davidson County, page 457, as “Gowen, Martin, 28, laborer, born in Tennessee”
Mary E. Gowen was married January 8, 1849 to Henry P. Robertson, according to “Davidson County, Tennessee Marriages, 1838-1863.”
Mrs. Mary J. Gowen was born in Virginia in 1812. She was a resident of Tennessee in 1829.
She was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1850 census of Davidson County, Household No. 223-199. The family was listed as:
“Gowen, Mary J. 38, born in VA
Mary J, Jr. 21, born in TN
B. C. 18, born in TN
Margaret C. J. 17, born in TN
C. M. W. 11, born in TN
Lewis G. R. R. 3, born in TN”
A Mrs. M. J. Gowen was married to Rev. E. D. Stephenson June 1, 1864 in Nashville, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Minerva J. Gowen received a deed to 20 acres on Mill Creek February 5, 1852 from Joseph W. Dabbs, according to Davidson County Deed Book 15, page 471.
Nellie Gowen, age 26, was married April 9, 1923 to Brown Boaz, age 26, of Pulaski, Tennessee, according to Davidson County marriage records. S. A. Chambers was surety.
Nelwyn Jeanene Gowen, age 24, LaVergne, Tennessee was married November 14, 1958 to William Alfred Calvin, age 32, 2628 Flamingo Drive, Nashville, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Owen M. Gowen, an Irish emigrant, was enumerated as the head of Household 1002-977 in the 1860 census of Davidson County, 13th Civil District:
“Gowen, Owen M. 35, born in Ireland, laborer
Ann 23, born in Ireland, wife
May 2, born in TN
Phillip W. 1/12, born in TN”
Robert Harrison Gowen, age 22, 4606 Leland Lane was married January 30, 1950 to Margaret Adele Adams, age 22, according to Davidson County marriage records. Of Robert Harrison Gowen and Margaret Adele Adams Gowen nothing more is known.
Samuel G. Gowen was married to Malinda A. Long August 7, 1870 by T. A. Mason, minister of the gospel, according to Davidson County marriage records. Malinda A. Long Gowen, “widow of Samuel Gowen, boardinghouse, 213 Broad” appeared in the 1887 edition of the city directory of Nashville. In 1888 she appeared at her home at 515 South Cherry. In the 1891 edition she was listed as a “dressmaker, 507 South High.” In 1892 she was making her home at 313 South Spruce. She did not reappear in the 1893 edition.
Malinda A. Long Gowen, “widow of Samuel Gowen”, was listed in the Ft. Worth, Texas city directory from 1889 to 1908 residing at 412 East 4th Street. She was enumerated in the 1900 census of Tarrant County, Texas, Enumeration District 87, page 2 in the household of her-brother-in-law, James E. Turntrell as:
“Gowen, Malinda A. 67, born in TN in December 1832.”
Sarah C. Gowen was married April 27, 1853 to Thomas C. [Crafts?] Casey, a possible son of Dempsey Casey of Currituck County, North Carolina, according to “Davidson County, Tennessee Marriages, 1838-1863.”
In the same year Thomas C. Casey was enumerated in Davidson County living with James and Phoebe Smith:
“Smith, James 59,
“Casey, Thomas C. 60, pedler, married within the
Thomas C. Casey reappeared in the 1860 census of adjoining Cheatham County, Tennessee. Cheatham County had been created from Davidson County in 1856. According to Alicia Jones, he was enumerated in the First Civil District, page 40:
“Casey, Thomas 68, farmer, born in NC, $1,511
in real estate
S. S. 34, born in TN, [Sarah Catherine Gowen?]
J. D. 4, son, born in TN
Jno 3, son, born in TN
A. C. 1, daughter, born in TN
William H. 24, son, born in TN”
Children born to Thomas C. Casey and Sarah C. [S?] Gowen Casey include:
James D. Casey born about 1856
John Casey born about 1857
Anna Catherine Casey born about 1859
Susan L. Gowen, age 26, was enumerated in the 1870 census of Davidson County, page 443.
Thomas Gowen was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1850 census of Davidson County, Household 175, page 710.
“Gowen, Thomas 30, born in TN, woodcutter
Elizabeth 27, born in TN
George 13, born in TN
James 8, born in TN
Josiah 6, born in TN
Still, George 23, born in TN, laborer
Hilton, Jerome 19, born in TN, woodcutter”
Thomas Gowen, negro was married January 29, 1877 to Journie Baugh, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Thomas Gowen and Journie Baugh Gowen are unknown.
Vivian Karen Gowen, age 23, 1807 19th Avenue South was married September 1, 1965 to Thomas Wayne Newman, 2006 Dabbs Avenue, Nashville, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Wesley Gowen, negro was married January 18, 1877 to Alice Porter, according to Davidson County marriage records. Of Wesley Gowen and Alice Porter Gowen nothing more is known.
William Gowen “of Davidson County, Tennessee” purchased from Jenkins Whitesides, also of Davidson County 100 acres on Richland Creek of Elk River in Lincoln County, Tennessee for $1,500 September 11, 1820, according to Lincoln County Deed Book B-1, page 108. The land was part of 5,000 acres originally granted to Martin Armstrong in Grant No. 1107, probably for Revolutionary service.
William Gowen [or Gavin or Goven] was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1860 [?] census of Davidson County, City of Nashville, Household 115-115. The family was recorded as:
“Gowen, William 26, born in TN, no profession
Jane 27, born in TN
A. M. 8/12, born in TN
Gowen, Joanna 46, born in TN
John 23, born in TN
Henry 21, born in TN
Anne 17, born in TN”
William F. Gowen was married January 26, 1886 to Nannie A. Chadones, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to William F. Gowen and Nancy Chadones Gowen are unknown.
Willie Gowen, age 14 in 1860, was living in the home of A. J. Folsom, according to the 1860 census of Davidson County, page 148.
Miss Winifred Gowen, age 20, was married January 6, 1928 to Milburn L. Hogue, age 26, 228 Bascobel, Nashville, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Alvin Buell Gowens was born in 1928. He was married June 25, 1965 to Barbara Gayle Walpool, age 22, according to Davidson County Marriage records. Of Alvin Buell Gowens and Barbara Gayle Walpool Gowens nothing more is known.
Ed Gowens, negro was married August 21, 1897 to Henrietta Cunningham August 21, 1897, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Ed Gowens and Henrietta Cunningham Gowens are unknown.
James W. Gowens requested a license to marry Martha Hooberry December 6, 1864, according to Davidson County marriage records. No return was made of the license.
Jarrett Gowens, negro, was married to Frances Mullins March 15, 1877, according to Davidson County marriage records. “Jarrett Gowen,” negro, was remarried to Lou Harris January 10, 1880. “Garrett Going,” negro, was remarried to Lou Harris January 29, 1889, according to Davidson County marriage records. “Jarrett Gowen,” negro, was married to Janie Rucker August 26, 1898. “Jarrett Going,” negro was married to Onie Irvin August 14, 1909. Moses Going was bondsman. Jarrett Gowens was married to Daisy Cunningham July 21, 1914, according to Davidson County marriage records.
Lane Gowens lived at 4701 Outer Drive, according to the 1959 telephone directory of Nashville.
Ray Gowens, age 36, 208 Bernie Dillon Building, Nashville was married May 27, 1930 to Mrs. Mabel Nowhie Ramsey, age 28, according to Davidson County marriage records. Ray Gowens lived at 1209 Ashwood Avenue, according to the 1959 telephone directory of Nashville.
Syntha Gower was fined “for not attending when summoned to testify in behalf of Thomas Hampton against John Boyd and James Foster” October 7, 1789, according to Davidson County Court minutes.
William Gower was appointed a grand juror in the April term of 1784, and he recorded his brand there in July 1784, according to Davidson County Court minutes.
Michael Gowin was married November 9, 1860 to Margaret Gannon, according to Davidson County marriage records. Children born to Michael Gowin and Margaret Gannon Gowin are unknown.
Rev. Henry E. Gowins lived at 1407 9th Avenue North, according to the 1971 telephone directory of Nashville.
Mrs. Mary Gowing was married to James Arthur February 11, 1865, according to Davidson County Marriage records.
Gordon Gowne appeared as the head of a household in the 1860 census of Davidson County. The family was rendered as:
“Gowne, Gordon 48, born in Virginia, shoemaker
Jamina 36, born in TN
Samuel 14, born in TN
Johna 12, born in TN
Susan 10, born in TN
Charles 8, born in TN
Daniel 6, born in TN
Margaret 4, born in TN
Sarah 2, born in TN
Elby 1/12, born in TN”
Samuel McGowen appeared on Davidson County jury panels July 8, 1779, April 4, 1786, and in October 1786, according to Davidson County Court minutes.
John McGown was named on a road committee “to oversee the road from Mansker’s Station to Heaton’s Station” January 12, 1792, according to Davidson County Court minutes.
Miss Willie Gowen Tompkins, daughter of John Thomas Tompkins and Nannie Ellen Webb Tompkins, was born June 7, 1884 in Davidson County. She was married about 1901 to John Judah.
DECATUR COUNTY, TENNESSEE
J. Gowan was enumerated as the head of Household 841-841 in the 1860 census of Decatur County, 11th Civil District:
“Gowan, J. 28, born in TN, day laborer
C. 28, born in TN, wife
J. W. 8, born in TN, male
R. 6, born in TN, male
R. 4, born in TN, male”
Living in the household of J. M. Jones, No. 854-854, 11th Civil District in the 1860 census of Decatur County were four Gowen individuals:
“Jones, J. M. 30, born in TN, day laborer”
Gowen M. 26, born in TN, female
Gowen J. M. 8, born in TN, male
J. J. 6, born in TN, male
C. M. 5, born in TN, male
A. J. 2, born in TN, male”
S. O. Gowens was enumerated as the head of Household 778-779, 12th Civil District, Decatur County:
“Gowens, S. O. 27, born in TN, farmer, $250 real
estate, $240 personal property,
J. M. 27, born in TN
E. 5, born in TN, female
E. E. 3, born in TN, female”
DEKALB COUNTY, TENNESSEE
Sarah Goens was married to Joe Kimbrow April 25, 1879 in Dekalb County according to Tenessee Marriage records [1851-1900].
Jackson Goin was married to M. A. Goin November 5, 1876 in Dekalb County according to Tennessee marriage records.
John Goines married Pollie A. Goines on February 13, 1887, according to DeKalb County marriage records.
Samuel Goines married Sarah Brown on December 25, 1884, according to DeKalb County marriage records.
Isebel Goins was married to Scott Columbus [also appears as Scott Columus] Novemer 28, 1883 in Dekalb County.
Clay Gowan, a mulatto [or Melungeon] was listed as the head of a household enumerated in the 1880 census of DeKalb County, Enumeration District 25, page 23, Civil District 1, as:
“Gowan, Clay 45, born in TN, mulatto
Fannie 31, born in TN, white
Jim 13, born in TN, mulatto
Nora 10, born in TN, mulatto
Lulu 9, born in TN, mulatto
Mack 4, born in TN, mulatto
Willie 6, born in TN, mulatto, daughter
Ewing 3, born in TN, mulatto
Clay 8/12, born in TN, mulatto”
Polley Gowans married Lucien Preston on February 19, 1869 in DeKalb County, according to Tennesse marriage records [1851-1900].
Mollie Gowen was married to John Rollins March 22, 1879 in Dekalb County according to Tennessee Marriage records (1851-1900).
Nannie Gowen was married to Liv Tubb December 17, 1876 in Dekalb County according to Tennessee Marriage records [1851-1900].
Susan M. Gowen was married to E. K. Atwell May 13, 1877 in Dekalb County according to Tennessee Marriage records (1851-1900).
W. D. Gowen was married to Mattie E. Wood September 25, 1873 in Dekalb County according to Tennessee Marriage records (1851-1900). Nothing more is known of W. D. Gowen and Mattie E. Wood Gowen.
Joshua Gowens was married February 27, 1881 to Jane King, according to Dekalb County marriage records. Children born to Joshua Gowens and Jane King Gowens are unknown.
Spencer Gowens was married February 11, 1859 to Edith Morrison, according to Dekalb County marriage records. Children born to Spencer Gowens and Edith Morrison Gowens are unknown.
DICKSON COUNTY, TENNESSEE
James Goan, a farmer was listed in the 1820 census of Dickson County as the head of household No. 559. Enumerated in the household were:
“James Goan white male 26-45
white female 16-26
white male 0-10
white male 0-10
white female 0-10
white female 0-10”
G. W. L. Gowen was born in Tennessee in 1827. He was married about 1850. He, a blacksmith, appeared September 27, 1860 as the head of a Household 1063-1063, near Danielsville, Tennessee in the 1860 census of Dickson County, Middle Division, page 276-A, enumerated as:
“Gowen, G. W. L. 33, born in TN, blacksmith, $500 real
estate, $130 personal property
M. 32, born in TN, wife
W. C. 9, born in TN, son
J. W. 7, born in TN, son
M. A. 6, born in TN, daughter
S. E. 4, born in TN, daughter
G. W. 3, born in TN, son
L. 1, born in TN, daughter
J. 1/12, born in TN, son”
DYER COUNTY, TENNESSEE
Allen Goings was recorded as the head of a household in the 1900 census of Dyer County, Enumeration District 15, page 5, living in Dyersburg, Tennessee:
“Goings, Allen, 24, born in January 1876 in TN
Mary 26, born in March 1874 in TN
Mattie 5, born in March 1895 in TN
Irene 2, born in January 1898 in TN
Lillie 5/12, born in December 1899 in TN
Andy Goins, negro, was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1900 census of Dyer County, Enumeration District 16, page 4, living in Dyersburg, Tennessee:
“Goins, Andy 34, born in TN, July 1865, negro
Mat 30, born in TN, January 1870, wife
Percy 17, born in TN, September 1882
Earnest 15, born in TN, December 1884
Earry 13, born in TN, October 1886
Willie 9, born in TN, October 1890
Earmer 6, born in TN, September 1893
Ada M . 5, born in TN, August 1894
Mary 3, born in TN, February 1884”
D. C. Gowen was born in Tennessee in 1827 of parents who were both born in Virginia. He was married before 1860, wife’s name Tennessee. The household of D. C. Gowen was enumerated in the 1880 census of Dyer County, Enumeration District 5, page 18, Second Civil District as:
“Gowen, D. C. 53, born in TN, father born in VA, mother born in VA
Tennessee 46, born in AL, father born in NC mother born in GA
Hamilton 18, born in TN,, father born in TN, mother born in Alabama
Mary 17, born in TN, father born in TN, mother born in AL
John 16, born in TN, father born in TN, mother born in AL
James 14, born in TN, father born in TN, mother born in AL
Pleasant 12, born in TN, father born in TN, mother born in AL
Martha 11, born in TN, father born in TN, mother born in AL
Julia Ann 10, born in TN, father born in TN, mother born in AL
Susan 9, born in TN, father born in TN, mother born in Al
Thomas 8, born in TN, father born in TN, mother born in AL
Alles 4, born in TN, father born in TN, mother born in AL, daughter
William 20, born in TN, father born in TN, mother born in AL, son”
Mark Gowen, negro, was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1900 census of Dyersburg, Tennessee, Enumeration District 16, page 4:
“Gowen, Mark 38, born in TN in December 1861
Martin 32, born in TN in March 1868, wife
Osie 5, born in TN in April 1895, son
Howard 3, born in TN in May 1897, son
George 1, born in TN in January 1899, son”
FAYETTE COUNTY, TENNESSEE
No individuals by the name of Gowen [or spelling variations] appeared in the 1836 tax list of Fayette County.
L. S. Goen was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1880 census of Fayette County, Enumeration District 24, page 18, Civil District 8:
“Goen, L. S. 52, born in TN
A. E. 53, born in TN
Glosip, S. J. 30, born in TN, niece
J. E. 5, born in TN,
great niece, daughter of S. J. Glosip”
C. A. Goins was married March 17, 1843 to Sarah F. B. Elder, according to “Fayetten County, Tennessee Masrriages, 1848-1850.” Children born to C. A. Goins and Sarah F. B. Elder Goins are unknown.
William Gowan, negro, son of Pugh Gowan and Classie Gowan, was born in September 1872 in Tennessee. In 1916 he was a farmer in Fayette County. He died there November 2, 1916 “of gastroenteritis,” according to Tennessee BVS Death Certificate No. 414. Pearley Mitchell of Moscow, Tennessee was the informant.
Sarah Jane Gowen was married to E. F. Atkin, January 30, 1848, according to “Fayette County, Tennessee Masrriages, 1838-1850.”
FRANKLIN COUNTY, TENNESSEE
Nathen Goin was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1900 census of Franklin County, Enumeration District 27, page 10:
Goin, Nathen 72, born in TN, September 1827
Vandorey 30, born in TN, October 1869
Marah 28, born in TN, February 1872
John 23, born in TN, January 1877
Harvey 21, born in TN, November 1878
Nathaniel 5, born in TN, October 1894″
Samuel Goin was reported as the head of a household in the 1900 census of Franklin County, Enumeration District 27, page 13:
“Goin, Samuel 28, born in TN, March 1871
Marah 21, born in TN, September 1878
Harie 1, born in TN, July 1898, son”
Thomas Goin was shown as head of a household in the 1900 census of Franklin County, Enumeration District 28, page 9:
“Goin, Thomas 30, born in TN, May 1870
Nancy M. 39, born in TN, April 1861
Joseph C. 5, born in TN, June 1895
Carnel C. 3, born in TN, April 1897
Adams, John H. 14, born in TN, July 1886,
William Goin was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1900 census of Franklin County, Enumeration District 27, page 13:
“Goin, William 26, born in TN, September 1873
Learie 24, born in TN, February 1876
Frank 2, born in TN, June 1895”
Antney Gouing, “stepson of Obe Brown” was enumerated in the 1900 census of Franklin County, Enumeration District 27, page 11 as “age 33, born in Tennessee in November 1866.”
John M. Gowan, “of the County of Franklin” deeded 10 acres of land to Roswell Hall of Rhea County, Tennessee February 24, 1821, according to Franklin County Deed Book A, page 23. The land lay “between the town of Jasper and the creek formerly known as Hudson Creek.” This area was later included in Marion County, Tennessee.
“John Gowen” appeared in the 1840 census of Bedford County, Tennessee, page 30, as the head of a household. The family was recorded as:
“Gowen, John white male 50-60
white female 40-50
white male 20-30
white male 20-30
white female 15-20
white female 5-10”
The family did not reappear in the 1850 census of Bedford County.
Thomas O. Gowan appeared as the head of a household in the 1850 census of Franklin County. The family was rendered as:
“Gowin, Thomas O. 38, born in TN
Mary H. 28, born in TN
Benjamin H. 12, born in MS
Thomas I. 10, born in TN
James H. 3, born in TN
Sarah 1, born in TN”
The 1890 polltax list of Franklin County included Bill Gowins, Noah Gowins, Joshua Gowins, Jack Gowins and Granville Gowins.
Levi Gown was appointed to a road committee June 4, 1832, and in May 1838, according to Franklin County Court Minute Book, page 38.
“Gown & Gown” paid an advalorem tax on 110 acres, according to the 1890 tax list of Franklin County. Mrs. Mattie Gown paid an advalorem tax on a three-acre town lot in 1890.
GIBSON COUNTY, TENNESSEE
Drury Gowan was married to Fanny Hall January 17, 1853, according to “Gibson County, Tennessee Marriages, 1824-1860.” Children born to Drury Gowan and Fanny Hall Gowan are unknown.
Lucinda Gowan appeared as the head of a household in the 1880 census of Gibson County, Enumeration District 32, page 16:
“Gowan, Lucinda 43, born in TN
Johnson, James 18, born in TN
Nettie 14, born in TN, daughter
Gowan, Fannie 4, born in TN, daughter”
Apparently Lucinda Gowan had been widowed twice. “Lou Gowan, age 60, born in Tennessee in February 1839” was enumerated in the 1900 census of Gibson County, Enumeration District 31, page 2, living alone.
R. M. Gowan was married to Mary Jane McFarlen November 24, 1854, according to “Gibson County, Tennessee Marriages, 1824-1860.” Children born to R. M. Gowan and Mary Jane McFarlen Gowan are unknown.
Sophronia E. Gowan was married January 17, 1853 to George M. Taylor, according to “Gibson County, Tennessee Marriages, 1824-1860.”
Will Gowan, “age 15, born in May 1885, servant of William Wood,” was enumerated in Wood’s household in the 1900 census of Gibson County, Enumeration District 47, page 12.
William J. Gowan was married Augut 21, 1851 to Dicey McFarland, according to “Gibson County, Tennessee Marriages, 1824-1860.” Children born to William J. Gowan and Dicey McFarland Gowan are unknown.
Mattie Gowen was enumerated in the 1900 census of Gibson County, Enumeration District 48, page 9 living in the household of Benjamin H. Williams in Milan, Tennessee where she was employed as his housekeeper.
GILES COUNTY, TENNESSEE
Giles County was organized in 1809 with land from adjoining Maury County, Tennessee. A great many settlers came into the area, only to learn that they were “Intruders” on land that the Chickasaw Indians claimed by treaty.
U. S. Army soldiers from Ft. Hampton were ordered to remove the settlers. Between the years 1809 and 1811 federal soldiers made numerous forays onto the Chickasaw reservation in order to remove illegal settlers and destroy their improvements, including crops and homes.
The settlers appealed to Pres. James Madison. In 1810 they addressed a petition to Washington:
“The 1810 Elk River Intruders Petition
Although commonly referred to as the “Simms’ Settlement Petition, many of the 450 men and women [Intruders] who signed the following document were residing elsewhere within the untreated Chickasaw lands, including Giles County, although Simms Settlement [on the Elk River in present-day Limestone County, Alabama, just south of Giles] does appear to have been where the settlers’ returned to regroup following the 1809 Intruder Removals.
Many of these names and those on the 1809 Elk River Intruder List are also on the 1812 Giles county tax list, and a sampling has been indicated by the use of the symbol after the name.
Excerpted from The Territorial Papers of the United States, The Territory of Mississippi, 1809-1817, Volume VI, compiled and edited by Clarence Edwin Carter, published by the United States Government Printing Office,
Washington, 1928, pp. 106-113:
Page 106–108] Mississippi Territory
PETITION TO THE PRESIDENT AND CONGRESS BY
BY INTRUDERS ON CHICKASAW LANDS
Mississippi Territory, Elk River, Sims’es Settlement
September 5th 1810–
To his Excellency James Maddison President of the United States of America and the honourable Congress assembled:
We your petitioners humbly sheweth that a great many of your fellow citizens have unfortunately settled on what is now called Chickasaw land- which has led us into difficultys that tongue cannot express if the orders from the ware department are executed in removeing us off of said land.
However in a government like ours founded on the will of the people, we have reason to hope and expect that we shall be treated with as much lennity as the duty you owe to Justice will permit.
We therefore wish, Without the shade or colour of falshood, to leve to your consideration the main object of our setling of this country. In the first Place, we understood that all the land on the north side of Tennessee river was purchased of the Indians which was certainly the Case, and further we understood that this was congress land as we call it and by paying of two Dollars per acre we should obtain An undoubted title to our lands and avoide the endless law suits that arise in our neighboring states in the landed property under these and many other impressions of minde that appeared inviteing to us to setle here a great many of us solde our possessions and Came and settled here in the winter and spring of 1807 without any knoledg or intention of violating the laws of government or Infringing on the right of another nation and we remained in this peacefull situation untill the fall of 1807 when General Robertson Came on runing the Chickasaw boundary line and he informed us that, though the Cherokees had sold this land, yet the Chickasaws held a clame to it as their right.
And now as booth nations |had| set up a clame to this land and Government having extingushed the Cherokee clame; and we who are well acquainted with the boundarys of this country do think in Justice that the Cherokees had undoubtedly the best right to this land we could state our reasons for thinking so, in many cases, but we shall only refurr you to one particular, that is when Zacheriah Cocks (1) made a purchase of parte of this country and came in order to settle it, he landed on an island in the Mussell Shoals, and was making preparations to ingarrison himself, but when the Cherokees Understood his intentions, they got themselves together and sent in messingers to him telling him if he did not desist and remove his men out of their country they would certainly imbody themselves and cut him off. And Cocks took the alarme And left the Island in the night. And if the cherokees had not defended this country at that time it may be persumed that it would have been taken from the Chickasaws without asking of them anything about their right to it. For the Cherokees do say that they have held an antiant clame to it which they never lost by sword or treaty untill extinguished by government.
And should this be the case and appeare to your satisfaction that the cherokees had at least as good a right as the Chickasaw and you haveing that right invested in you-and you are allso willing to pay the Chickasaw for their clame and they refuse to sell it, where then can there remain a single doubt In the publick Minde of doing the Chickasaws any kind of unjustice in makeing use of the Cherokee clame and saying: if they will not take a reasonable price for their clame we will not remove our fellow citizens off which will bring many women and children to a state of starvation mearly to gratify a heathan nation Who have no better right to this land than we have ourselves.
And they have by estemation nearly 100000 acres of land to each man Of their nation and of no more use to government or society than to saunter about upon like so many wolves or bares whilst they who would be a supporte to government and Improve the country must be forsed even to rent poore stony ridges to make a support to rase their famelies on whist there is fine fertile countrys lying uncultivated and we must be debared even from inJoying a small Corner of this land, but we look to your boddy of government as a friendly father to us and believe it Compleatley within your power Whilst you are administering Justice between us and the Chickasaws to say with the greatest propriety that we have once purchased this land and we will not remove our fellow citizens off but let them remain as tennants at will untill the Chickasaws may feell a disposition to sell us their clame.
Therefore we your humble petitioners wish you to take our standing duely into consideration and not say they are a set of dishoneste people who have fled from the lawes of their country and it is no matter what is done With them.
For we can support our carractors to be other ways and it is our wish and desire to protect and supporte our own native Government we must informe you that in the settling of this country men was obliged to expose themselves very much and the Climate not helthy a number of respectable men have deceased and left their widows with families Of alphan [orphan] children to rase in the best way they can.
And you might allmost as well send the sword amongst us as the fammin the time being short that our orders permits us to stay on. We wish you to send us an answer to our petition as soon as posable and, for heavens Sake, Pause to think what is to become of these poore alphan families who have more need of the help of some friendly parish than to have the strictest orders executed on them who has not a friend in this unfeeling world that is able to asist them Either in geting off of said land or supporting when they are off. We are certain in our own minds that if you could have A true representation of our carractor the industry we have made and the purity of our intentions in settling here together with the justice of our cause you would say in the name of God let them stay on and eat their well earned bread.
Perhaps our number may be fare more than you are apprised of from the best calculation that we can make, there is Exclusive of Doublehead’s reserv (2) 2250 souls on what is called Chickasaw land and all of us could live tollerabie comfortable if we Could remain on our improvements, but the distance is so great if we are removed off that we cannot take our produce with Us and a great many not in a circumstance to purchase more will in consequence of this be brought to a deplorable situation.
We shall therefore conclude in hopes that on a due consideration we shall find favour in the sight of your most honourable Body which will in duty binde your petitioners to ever Pray &c.
Wm. Sims (3)
Charles Skaggs Sen
Charles Skaggs Jur
Wm Bowling Sen
Wm Bowling Jr
Sammell Preed Jun
William Hood Jr
Philmer Green Senr
John Mitchell Snr
John Mitchell Jnr
Robt. Hodges Jnr.
James Humphrs [Humphreys?]
George S. Wilson
Alexr Masky (or Marky)
Jame McConel (or McCarrel)
Jams M. McConell William Chambers
Moses Crosen [Crowson?]
William Welch Senr
John Umphres [Humphreys?]
William W. Capshaw
John Taylour Junr.
John Taylour Sen.
Nathanniel Hannet [Hamet?]
Names of the Widows
Abner Camnon (or Camron)
Joseph L. Jones
John Black Junr
Isac Lann (or Lanse)
Owin Shannon Se.
H. T. Hendry
Jos L. Hendry
John Black Senr
Gabriel Tayour [Taylour?]
Robert Wood Millenton Tidwell
Vantenten [Valentin?] Shoat
[Endorsed] Petition (addressed to James Madison, Pres: U.S. by 450 of the Intruders upon the Chickasaw Territory:
Reced Octo. 1st 1810.
Simon Foy and Thomas Dodd are not on the 1812 Giles tax list, but are mentioned by McCallum as early Elk River settlers. Both are also on the 1809 Intruders List (1) According to McCallum’s History of Giles…, “The treaties of 1805 and 1806 extinguished the Indian title to a considerable portion of what is now Madison County, in Alabama, a scope of country in the shape of a “V,” some thirty miles wide on the South boundary of the Tennessee with a point on the Tennessee River at Ditto’s landing, with about eight miles front on the river.
Soon after the treaty, Zachariah Cox and his associates, the “Tennessee Yazoo Company”, claimed this scope of country as against the US Government. Under their purchase from the State of Georgia in 1795, they commenced settling it and having it settled up. They were resisted by the Government and those claiming under said purchase were driven off.”
(2) Fort Hampton at the Doublehead Reserve became home to the soldiers’ whose duty it was to rid the reservation lands of “intruders.” A list dated (3) The original transcription included numbers which were commonly referred to as “Sims Numbers.” Those were not included in this edition.
William Goins was married to Frances Bunch July 6, 1865 in Giles County according to Tennessee Marriage records (1851-1900). Nothing more is known of William Goins and Frances Bunch Goins.
The family of Ernest B. Gowan was involved in an automobile accident June 20, 1983 six miles west of Columbia on SH99, according to the “Columbia State.” The newspaper identified the dead as Ernest B. Gowan, Pulaski; his wife, Brenda Gowan, 35, their daughter Lisa 11; Rayburn S. Cooper, 57 of Etheridge, Tennessee and his wife, Mildred Cooper, 53. Another Gowan daughter, seven-year-old Tina Gowan was hospitalized with a cut across her face.
Margaret C. Gowen who was born in South Carolina in 1840, was listed as the head of a household in the 1880 census of Giles County. The household, enumerated in Enumeration District 101, page 15, Civil District 3 in the Manuel Roberts household included:
“Gowen, Margaret C. 40, born in South Carolina
John W. 18, born in Alabama
Thomas 10, born in TN”
John William Gowan was born in West Tennessee February 3, 1852 of parents unknown. He was married about 1870, wife’s name Malinda. “J. W. Gown” was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1880 census of Giles County, Enumeration District 114, page 2, Civil District 16:
“Gown, J. W. 28, born in TN
Malinda 26, born in TN
L. A. 9, born in TN, daughter
D. H. 4, born in TN, son”
It is believed that Malinda Gowan died about 1878. John William Gowan was remarried February 3, 1881 to Martha Miles, according to a great-granddaughter, Tjuana McCallister. She was born in January 1857 to Henry Miles.
“John Gowen” was enumerated as the head of a household in the 1900 census of Giles County, Enumeration District 3, page 5:
“Gowen, John 44, born in TN in February 1856
Martha M. 43, born in TN in January 1857
Laticia 21, born in TN May 1879, daughter
Joe 19, born in TN in Jan. 1881, son
Mary E. 16, born in TN Oct. 1883, daughter
Willis 14, born in TN in July 1885, son
Sallie 13, born in TN in Feb. 1887, daughter
Mattie 11, born in TN in March 1889, daughter
Stanly 6, born in TN in June 1894, son
Fayette 4, born in TN in Aug. 1895, son
John M. 9/12, born in TN in Jan. 1900, son”
In 1915 John William Gowan was a farmer in Giles County.
“Mrs. Martha Miles Gowan, daughter of Henry Miles,” was was living in Giles County in Civil District 11 in 1917. She died there April 24, 1917, “age about 82, [actually age 60] of valvular heart lesion and senility,” according to Tennessee DVS Death Certificate No. 11208. She was buried in Providence Cemetery, according to her son, Joseph Milton Gowan, informant of Providence, Tennessee.
John William Gowan died there December 25, 1932, at age 67 in Giles County of “pneumonia following pulmonary T.B,” according to Tennessee BVS Death Certificate No. 28269. He was buried in Providence Cemetery, according to his son Joseph Milton Gowan, informant, of Pulaski, Tennessee.
Children born to John William Gowan and Malinda Gowan include:
Laticia A. Gowan born in May 1871
D. H. Gowan born about 1876
Children born to John William Gowan and Martha Miles Gowan include:
Joseph Milton Gowan born in January 1881
Mary E. Gowan born in October 1883
Willis Dee Gowan born in July 1885
Sallie Lee Gowan born in February 1887
Stanley Vestal Gowan born in June 1894
Fayette Gowan born in August 1895
John M. Gowan born in January 1900
Laticia A. Gowan, daughter of John William Gowan and Malinda Gowan, was born in May 1871, according to her enumeration in the 1880 census. Her age was reported as “21” [actually 29] in the 1900 census when she was living in her father’s household.
D. H. Gowan, son of John William Gowan and Malinda Gowan was born about 1876 in Tennessee. He appeared as a four-year-old in the 1880 census of his father’s household.
Joseph Milton Gowan, son of John William Gowan and Martha Miles Gowan, was born in January 1881 in Tennessee. He was enumerated as “Joe Gowen” in the 1900 census of his father’s household in Giles County.
He was married about 1901 to Virgie Pearl Warden who was born March 3, 1878 to Moses Warden and Sara Jane Dickson Warden of Moore County, Tennessee.
Joseph Milton Gowan and Virgie Pearl Warden Gowan were residents of Goodsprings, Tennessee in Civil District 6, about 1916. Their family consisted of three sons and four daughters.
He was the informant on the death certificate of his mother who died in 1917 when he lived at Providence and on the death certificate of his father who died in 1932 when he lived at Pulaski, Tennessee.
Virgie Pearl Warden Gowan died there May 12, 1945 of paralysis, according to Tennessee Death Certificate 42806. Her husband, the informant, was age 68 at the time. She was buried in Providence Cemetery, near Pulaski, Tennessee.
Children born to them include four daughters and:
Ernest Gowan born about 1916
Wallace Hill Gowan born about 1918
Carl Gowan born about 1920
Ernest Gowan, son of Joe M. Gowan and Virgie Pearl Warden Gowan, was born about 1916. In 1983 he lived in Pulaski.
Wallace Hill Gowan, son of Joe M. Gowan and Virgie Pearl Warden Gowan, was born about 1918. He was married about 1941 to Mattie Richardson. He became a dairy farmer at Pulaski. He died April 10, 1983 in Giles County Hospital and was buried in Giles Memory Gardens. His obituary mentioned that he was survived by three daughters: Mrs. Don Gilbert of Memphis, Mrs. Alvin Kimbrough of Chattanooga and Mrs. Robert Jacoby of Columbia and four sisters: Mrs. Oscar Surles, Mrs. Aymett Hamlett, Mrs. Virgil Pierce and Mrs. Grady Boone, all of Pulaski.
Children born to Wallace Hill Gowan and Mattie Richardson Gowan include:
Joe F. Gowan born about 1943
Thomas Perry Gowan born about 1946
Joe F. Gowan, son of Wallace Hill Gowan and Mattie Richardson Gowan, was born about 1943. In 1983 he lived in Knoxville.
Thomas Perry Gowan, son of Wallace Hill Gowan and Mattie Richardson Gowan, was born about 1946. In 1983 he lived in Pulaski.
Mary E. Gowan, daughter of John William Gowan and Martha Miles Gowan, was born in October, 1883.
Willis Dee Gowan, son of John William Gowan and Martha Miles Gowan, was born in Giles County in February 1887.
Sallie Lee Gowan, daughter of John William Gowan and Martha Miles Gowan, was born in February 1887.
Stanley Vestal Gowan, son of John William Gowan and Martha Miles Gowan, was born in June 1894 in Giles County.
Fayette Gowan, son of John William Gowan and Martha Miles Gowan, was born in August 1895.
“Fate Gowan” died in Pulaski in 1953.
Children born to him include:
Fred Gowan born about 1920
William Gowan born about 1922
Charles Gowan born about 1925
Fred Gowan, son of Fayette Gowan, was born about 1920.
William Gowan, son of Fayette Gowan, was born about 1922.
Charles Gowan, son of Fayette Gowan, was born about 1925. He was married about 1948, wife’s name Doris. In 1972 Charles Gowan and Doris Gowan lived at 1018 School Street, Columbia, Tennessee.
John M. Gowan, son of John William Gowan and Martha Miles Gowan, was born in January 1900.
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Excellent site, so much information. Thank you.