Lawrence County Heritage


The Journal of the Lawrence County

(Tennessee) Genealogical Society


Vol. 19, No. 1  Fall 2015


Table of Contents


From the Editor:


The deadline for submitting photos for the Lawrence County pictorial book has been extended to 15 November 2015.  Members are encouraged to send in their membership renewals when they receive the Summer journal.  Having to mail membership notices is a costly expensive and could be avoided if members renew their membership before it expires.  Please make suggestions regarding future meeting programs.  All are encouraged to contact the editor with comments, suggestions, or concerns about the journal.  Jim


Mystery Families and Photographs


Four unidentified photos are displayed in hopes that readers can provide the names of those in the photos.  All are in special collections at the Lawrence County Archives.  Please contact Kathy at or Jim at if you are able to identify any of these: 1) A woman standing wearing a heavy coat and hat. (From the Beckham collection); 2) A portrait of a woman. (From the Dye collection); 3) A toddler sitting in a chair and holding a toy. (Poag collection); 4) A portrait of a woman wearing an ornate collar. (Poag collection)


The Fire Fiend - Part X (continued from Summer 2015) Researched and compiled by Kathy Niedergeses


This is the 10th installment in a series that began in Vol. 16 #4, Summer 2013, regarding fires, fire fighting equipment and firemen of Lawrence County.  Sources include local newspapers, minutes of the City of Lawrenceburg, various community histories, Our Hometown: Lawrenceburg, TN, etc. and are given with each entry.  The author asks the readers to submit any information regarding fires not listed to the Lawrence County Archives.  See the article for details on the location, date, etc. of each fire listed.  The following locations and surnames are mentioned in the article:  Chapman, Busby, Belew, Woodard, Stribling, Fitzgerald, Chambers, Harris, Hampton, Crabb, Yarbrough, Sutton, Moore, Wilburn, Voss, Appleton gin. (To be continued in the Winter 2015 issue of the Journal)


Lawrence County, Tennessee 1890 Tax List - Part IV - Conclusion, Eleventh Civil District (continued from Summer, 2015)  Wallace Palmore


The names of those taxpayers in the Eleventh Civil District of Lawrence County, Tennessee are listed with the following additional information: acres, land value, total property value, poll tax, state tax, county tax, school tax, RR tax, and highway tax:  Puffer, Pigg, Pennington, Rahses, Rich, Remster, Romine, Ramsey, Rubert, Robers, Ratliff, Rising Rubert, Rasmusson, Ramey, Ray, Smith, Sheppard, Spencer. Stockwell, Smith, Sanger, Stephens, Scott, Stout Skillman, Stuart, Sheppard, Sowell, Smith & Cicle, Stanley, Twitchel, Thomison, Tunnaclif, Tolbert, Thomas, Veith, Crane & Cotton, Voxx, Voorhees, Viets & Coats, Vanschack, Walker, Washburn, White, Whitman, Willis, Walker & Howard, Walker & Brothers, Webster, Young, Zuend.  (This ends the Tax List for the 11th Civil District of Lawrence County, Tennessee.  The Tax List for the 12th Civil District will begin in the Winter 2015 issue of the Journal.)


Lawrence County, Tenn. Pictorial History Book - Bicentennial Edition.


This page provides information regarding the publication of the pictorial history book, instructions for submitting photographs to be included in the book, and ordering details.

For more information visit  The following three pages include an order form, suggested subjects for inclusion, archive hours and address for dropping off photos.  These pages include samples of the variety of photos being requested for inclusion in the book:  a group photo of students from the Lawrenceburg Colored School, a photo of students near West Point Academy, a photo of John and Edward Niedergeses, and a photo of patrons of a local barbershop.


Migrations To and From Lawrence County, TN During The 1870s Through Early 1900s - Part XX (continued from Summer 2015)  Researched and Compiled by Kathy & Lawrence Niedergeses


This information was found in newspapers from the 1880s, 1890s and early 1900s.  It includes names mentioned as migrating to or from Lawrence County, visitors, names registered in hotels, former residents subscribing to local newspapers.  The time period for this article is 30 Jan. 1891 through part of May 1891.  Copies of the actual newspaper pages are available from microfilm from the Archives.  Please contact the Archives if you have migration information about your Lawrence County ancestors.  Surnames: Matthews, Simms, Ray, Lendrum, Smith, Meadows, Comer, Bentley, Fillmore, Rose, Stewart, Parker, Busby, Neilson, Stone, Acklin, Harmon, Harvey, Brounlee, Goodloe, Severson, Black, Garner, Bailey, Sykes, Tabler, Hunt, Paisley, Kenney, Hagan, Joiner, Spence, Copeland, Griffin, Sanders, Dunn, Reynolds, Eagan, Stewart, Horton, Sanders, Hickman, McDougal, Coffman, Bill, Literal, Spence, Harvey.  (To be continued in the Fall 2015 issue of the Journal)


Minutes to Lawrence County Genealogical Society Board Meeting, Saturday, June 20, 2015  Doyce Shaddix

The Lawrence County Genealogical Society Board Meeting was held June 20, 2015.  The meeting was called to order by Lila Gobbell.  Minutes were read and approved.  The financial report was read and accepted.  Old Business: Only three copies of the David Crockett, the Public Man and Legislator book by Gert Peterson remain unsold.  Only four copies of the second printing of The Heritage of Lawrence County book remain unsold.  New Business: Plans for the new pictorial history book were discussed.  A contract has been signed with the publisher.  A motion was made, seconded and approved to withdraw the money donate through the genealogical society for the archives use and place it in a separate society savings account at the First Tennessee Bank to be used solely for the archives.  The meeting was adjourned.


Minutes to Lawrence County Genealogical Society Meeting, Saturday, June 20, 2015  Doyce Shaddix


The meeting was called to order by Lila Gobbell.  The minutes were read and approved.  The financial report was read and approved.  No Old Business.  New Business included information about the pictorial history.  The meeting was adjourned.  A presentation was given by Lila Gobbell on her Shaffer family line beginning with John Shaffer 1811-1925 and included George Washington Shaffer who enlisted in both the Confederate and Union armies during the Civil War. 


Discovering The Truth Of The Death of Henry McGee II  by Lila McGee Gobbell


Through letters, government documents and a family story, the author tells the tale of the 1810 feud over the Kingston Saltpeter Cave in Georgia that resulted in the death of the author's ggg-grandfather. 


Over 80 Stories submitted by Kathy Niedergeses


Two autobiographies are presented.  One written by Lillie Clark Bradley details her life that included teaching for several years in Lawrence County.  It was originally published in the Democrat-Union on 26 June 1969.  The other was written by Vina Nicholson, daughter of Billy Conway and Mattie Powell Conway.  She speaks of her life and her devotion to Christ.


Queries by Kathy Niedergeses


Joy Davis of West Point, Tennessee asks for information about Annie Mae Wiley Reynolds, daughter of Florence McCrory and Thomas Wiley, and her family.  A photo is displayed with the hopes that someone can identify the couple.  It is from the collection of Imogene McCrory Jester and may be Nancy L. Luker and Wiley T. Rochelle.  Contact Joy Davis with information.


Mystery Picture Identified

A photo that appeared in the Vol. 2 # 1, Sept. 1998 issue of the society's journal has been identified as Clarence Hollis.  The photo is reproduced in this issue.


About Our Front Cover : The Zion Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church of America Researched by Lawrence & Kathy Niedergeses and compiled by Kathy Niedergeses


The cover photo and accompanied history provides the explanation for the influx of Scandinavians into Lawrence County in the 1890s.  By using tax books and newspaper notices, the compiler traces the church’s history from its construction in 1894 through the current owners of the land where the church originally stood.


The Norwegian Hotel   Researched by Lawrence & Kathy Niedergeses, Compiled by Kathy Niedergeses


The tract where this hotel was located was originally in the A.W. & S.H. Bentley Addition on the south side of Columbia Avenue and faced the railroad.  This article traces the land and the hotel from 1885 to 1974 using deeds and newspaper accounts. The author asks the readers to contact the Lawrence County Archives if they have any additional information or photos.


Yesteryear Ads Submitted by Kathy Niedergeses


Four ads that appeared in the December 23, 1949 issue of the Democrat-Union newspaper are displayed.   If anyone remembers the following businesses, please contact the Lawrence County Archives:  The S. & Z. Stores (North Military Street), the Red and White Grill (Mr. and Mrs. Fred Hanback), The Soda Grill (Bobby and Nolley Brewer) and Thigpen Brothers (new and used cars).


The Lawrence County Genealogical Society Needs Your Help!


Kathy Niedergeses asks for help from members to solve the genealogical society's on-going difficulties regarding the lack of story submissions to be published in the journal.  Kathy and her husband can not continue to carry the burden of researching and writing the bulk of the content found in each issue.  Kathy is willing to help edit any story a reader may have but is reluctant to submit.  Lawrence County is rich in history and that includes the history of families who lived there.  If your story is worth telling to your family and you want it preserved for future generations, sharing it by having it published in the journal is a great way to do it.


Updated April 3, 2019                   


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