Stewart County, Tennessee

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Table of Contents

History of Stewart County
Walker Line
Tax Lists
Historic Points of Interest
Important People of Stewart County, Tennessee
Stewart County Place Names

Danville Crossing Banner DavilleCrossing Home Page

Danville Crossing covers Benton, Henry, Houston, Humphreys, and Stewart Counties Tennessee.   The Danville Crossing Page also provides links to TNGenWeb County Pages of Benton, Henry, Houston, and Stewart Counties.

Stewart County Surname Registry [A - F]    [G - M]    [N - Z]
Research Helps
Other Genealogy Links
Stewart County Queries
Stewart County Cemeteries
Location of Stewart County Cemeteries

Environmental Issues

Abortion - Our National Disgrace (Graphic)
The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention
Stewart County Happenings
U. S. and Tennessee State Governments
Stewart County Selected Genealogical Extracts
James N. Long has joined us on the Stewart County Genealogy project.   Check out his web pages!   More to come.

Stewart County Happenings

new History and Family Volume II are $69.95*

*plus $5.00 Shipping and Handling and $5.35 for TN residents for State Sales Tax
Mail your order to:
Stewart County Historical Society
PO Box 297
Dover, TN 37058

new New Stewart County Cemetery Book To Be Printed

See the Stewart County Historical Society web site for more information.

Early History

Stewart County, Tennessee is located along the eastern shore of the Tennessee River/Kentucky Lake with its northern border stretching along the Kentucky State Line. Its eastern boundry is along the Montgomery County line, and on the south lies Houston County. Dominated by ridges and valleys, this beautiful section of our state was early settled by pioneers who were mostly from North Carolina. Stewart County was once a part of Davidson County, North Carolina. In 1788, the western part of Davidson County was formed into Tennessee County with Clarksville as the county seat. In 1796, the year that Tennessee became a state, Tennessee County was divided into Robertson and Montgomery Counties.

By and act of the General Assembly, passed November 1, 1803, Stewart County was created and named in honor of Duncan Stewart, one of the pioneer farmers of the county.

The act to establish the county reads, in part:

Section 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Tennessee, that Montgomery County be divided by a line which shall Commence on the Kentucky line, 13 miles west of the meridian of Clarksville and run south to the southern boundary of this State, and all the territory west of said line shall constitute a separate distinct county, to be called Stewart.

Section 4 directed for the first county court to be held at the home of William Martin, near Bald Island. Bald Island was located in the Cumberland River above the mouth of Cross Creek. The June term of court for 1804 was held at the home of George Martin. And, again in 1805, the June term of court was held at the home of George Martin. We have not established a direct connection with William and George Martin, but either of these men could have been the father of our John Martin.

It is uncertain when the first settlers arrived in Stewart County, or even who they were. Probably the first settlers of the county were George Petty, James Andrews, Samuel A. Smith, Brittain Sexton, Elisha Dawson, and Samuel Boyt. These men, all from North Carolina, came about 1795.

When Brittain Sexton first came to Stewart County from Wake County, North Carolina about 1795, it was actually Tennessee County. In 1796 Tennessee County was divided in Robertson County and Montgomery County. The area that comprises present day Stewart County, which was to be formed in 1803, was included in this new Montgomery County.

"On November 1, 1803, the General Assembly passed an Act, the first section of which is in substance as follows: Be it enacted, etc: that Montgomery County be divided by a line which shall commence on the Kentucky line 13 miles west of the meridian of Clarksville and run south to the southern boundary of the state, and all of the territory west of said line shall constitute a separate and distinct county to be called Stewart.

"This embraced all of what is now Stewart, Houston, Humphreys and Perry and about one half of Wayne together with all of West Tennessee. Thus you see that the old Chicksaw towns, Fort Assumption, Fort Pickering and the great metropolis of Memphis were all within the borders of Stewart County and under her protecting care and control.

"In 1803 Humphreys was formed from Stewart; in 1819 Hardin was formed from Stewart; in 1819 Shelby was formed from Hardin; in 1821 Henry was formed from Stewart; in 1821 Carol was formed form Stewart; in 1821 Henderson was formed from Stewart; in 1821 Madison was formed from Stewart; in 1823 Hardeman was formed from Stewart; in 1823 Haywood was formed Stewart; in 1823 Dyer was formed from Stewart; in 1823 Gibson was formed from Stewart; in 1823 Weakley was formed from Stewart; in 1823 Obion was formed from Stewart; in 1823 Tipton was formed from Stewart; in 1824 Fayette was formed from Hardin and Shelby."

Source: Letter to the Editor, Memphis commercial Appeal, June 7, 1920. Copy of article was found in the estate of Mrs. Effie Robertson.

The Walker Line

The parallel of latitude of 36 degrees and 30 minutes north was made by royal charters the boundary line between the Colonies of Virginia and North Carolina, and that parallel on projection was the line dividing Kentucky from Tennessee.

In 1779, the legislature of Virginia named Dr. Thomas Walker and Daniel Smith on the part of that State, and North Carolina named Col. Richard Henderson and William Bailey Smith as members of a joint commission to run and mark an extension of this line into the West where it had never been run between those States, of which the territories within Kentucky and Tennessee were parts, respectively. The representatives of the two States disagreed as to the course of the line early in the survey; and they separated. The commissioners of Virginia continued independently, and ran what has ever since been known as Walker's line to the Tennessee River. They, however, deflected toward the north, owing to improper allowances for variation of the needle, and as a result the Tennessee (river?) was reached about seventeen miles north of the true latitude line. The later discovery of this deflection led the State of Kentucky in the opening years of the Nineteenth Century to stand for a correction with a consequent reclamation of the long, narrow strip held by Tennessee under the Walker survey. West of the Tennessee the line had not been run and Kentucky was there less embarrassed.

Continue to the complete article for more detail.

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Important People of Stewart County, Tennessee

Historic Points of Interest

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Stewart County Place Names

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Research Helps

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Other Genealogy Links

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Houston County
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Montgomery County
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The Early Home Of The Martin And Sexton Families
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Introduction to Tennessee Land History
Tennessee Archaeology Net
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Tennessee Blue Book - General Information on the State of Tennessee
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Historic Documents from 18th Century America
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