Marshall County's original area was about 23 townships or 828 square miles. In 1870 it gave up part of its territory on the east to Benton County, and in 1873 it gave up another portion of its area to assist in the formation of Tate County, and received in lieu of the portion surrendered to Tate, all that portion of DeSoto County lying within townships 1 and 2, R. 5 west. Subsequent slight modifications of its boundaries have resulted in reducing its area to 689 square miles.
Marshall County received its full share of settlers during the early rush of emigration into the newly opened Chickasaw cession. By the year 1840 it had a population of about 17,500, and by 1850 the population was 29,089. Among these were many prominent families and wealthy planters.
Marshall County's chief town and county seat is Holly Springs, the "City of Flowers." Addison Craft, one of the pioneers, stated the roadsters that traveled from the Chickasaw Bluffs to the land office at Pontotoc named it. At this spot they found an extensive ravine covered with holly, and having some thirty or more clear cold springs of water. It was an excellent camping ground and the camp was called Holly Springs. It was here that on December 20, 1862, General Van Dorn made his celebrated raid on the Federal stores left behind by Grant. Some of the other more important settlements of Marshall County are Byhalia, Potts Camp, Redbanks, Waterford and Hudsonville.
Some Early History of Marshall County
By Bobby Mitchell (posted with permission)
Marshall County was formed by act of the Mississippi Legislature on Feb. 9, 1836. It was among a number of counties authorized at the same time from lands of the Chickasaw Cession. John Marshall, Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, was the source of the name of the county.
At its inception, Marshall County was approximately 810 square miles in area, about 100 square miles more than now. Including the initial shape of the county, we have had about ten different physical configurations, sometimes being increased in size, and sometimes being decreased in size. Counties with which we have had exchanges are Benton, DeSoto, Tate, and Lafayette.
The accompanying map shows the original shape and size as it appeared in 1836. All the communities shown of the map were not in existence in 1836, but they are shown for points of reference for today. Those communities which did exist in 1836 included Red Banks, Chulahoma, Holly Springs, Hudsonville, Tallaloosa, among those we know today. Others were named for individuals or geographical features and are not so well known today.
Before March 14, 1836, and election was held and five men were selected as members of the Board of Police (Supervisors). On March14, at the "counting rooms of Messr's Mosby in the town of Holly Springs" the five men were sworn in by William Davis, one of the commissioners in the act of erecting the county. Leander Guy was chosen as President of the first Board of Police, and he was inaugurated along with K.L. Holland, Shipman Denton, William Allen, and Martin Tally, the other four members.
On March 28 the Board of Police set an election for the county to elect local officials. The polls were open at 10 a.m. on April 14th and closed at 4 p.m. on April 15th. Notice of the election was made by posting a copy of the order at each public place within the county. Levi McCrosky was elected in this election as the first sheriff of Marshall County.
On April 16th the Board of Police divided the county into five Police (Supervisor's) Districts (see map). Districts one and two each contained 135 square miles. Districts three, four, and five were slightly larger than districts one and two, being about 180 square miles.
On April 19th the Board of Police began the task of selecting the county seat for Marshall County. We have all read that Chulahoma was nearly selected as the county seat, or Hudsonville, or Clarendon (Lamar) or (insert the name of your choice) was considered. This makes good lore but was unfounded. State law designated the county seat be within five miles of the geographic center of the county, unanimously rejected by the Police as unsuitable. Among those places actually considered were Isaac Love's place on Section 16, Township 4, Range, (southeast of the present intersection of old Hwy. 4 West and Hwy. 7 South); the town of Holly Springs and its vicinity; Col. Davis's place on Section 7, Township 4, Range 3, near Tallaloosa; and the town of Ittawamba, (around the present day subdivision of Sunset Acres) on Section 26, Township 3, Range 3, the meeting to be held at the house of Stephen Greer.
Proposals were accepted from the aforementioned property owners and the one accepted was for Section 6, Township 4, Range 2, (Holly Springs) upon the condition that the owners of the section donate fifty acres to be selected by the Board of Police and also convey to the Board of Police to be used as a commons, the ground enclosed around the Holly Springs and the springs known as Randolph Springs, with a suitable quantity of ground for public use. The successful land owner was Delila Love Moore, a Chickasaw Indian, who had married a white man, John B. Moore.
On April 26th the Board renamed the county set as "Paris". On that date they also issued orders to take bids on a "fine court house and jail for Marshall County". Bids were taken the next week for a temporary courthouse. The successful bid of $300 was by Simkin Young. At the June 4th meeting of the Board of Police, in response to "the wish of the citizens generally", the name of Paris was changed back to Holly Springs.
In July 1836 an election was held for a judge and district attorney for the eighth judicial district for the State of Mississippi. Election precincts and election holders were as follows: for the first district at Hudsonville: Thomas Gatewood, Richard Hogan, David C. Willys; at Coopwood Springs: John Rook, James Wasson and Parish Gorman. In the second district at Jackson's: James Gilbert, Dempsey Britteham, and Jackson White. At Parks: Stephen Harris, John Parks, and Alfred Hardin. Third district at Red Banks: Notley G. (Gore) Wornell, John Ellis, and _____ Carter. At Chulahoma: Dr. Brown, Theodore H. Goodloe, and Robert Harris. Fourth district at Holly Springs: John A. McKendris, L.D. Henderson, and John Hardin. At Tallaloosa: James Glover, Michael Byrd, and John L. Southerland. At Greer's on Springs Creek: H.D. Allen, John Boatner and Col. Austin. Fifth district at Mathews store: John A. Lassit (?), and Leonard Nicly; at Furguson's: Joshua Cockram, Daniel McNeil, and Elias Furguson. At Francis Squires: William Haltom, William Means, and L.R. Davisson. This is the earliest list available of polling places and poll workers in Marshall County. (This is all taken from the minutes of the Board of Police.)
In a newly organized county there would be no public roads. One of the duties of the Board of Police was to establish a road system. Men from various communities were chosen to meet as a jury to view the best routes from one community to another. Reports were then returned to the Board of Police with a recommendation for the proposed road. One such committee, (and there were a great many), was to meet in Holly Springs on Nov. 11, 1836 and to commence at the street that runs north from the northwest corner of the public square of Holly Springs and to go to the section line of the city, then go by the "nearest and best way to lay out and mark a road in the direction of Memphis". Among the men of this committee were William Richard Wornell, Israel Denton, William Allen, Robert Durham, Joseph Hardin, Manning Clemmons, Notley G. Wornell, Patrick English, Shipman Denton, and Henry Moore. Many of the men on this list are not named in any other record in this county. For instance, Richard Wornell and Notley Gore Wornell are not found in any other records in Marshall County, outside the Board of Police Minutes. Once roads were laid out, men within six miles of each road were assigned a number of days to work on the roadway each year. These men were listed in the Police Minute Book. The men listed above are for illustrative purposes to make the readers aware of the many varied sources of information concerning the county. This article is not intended to be comprehensive in purview. It is meant to stimulate interest and research activity into county history.
County secured from Chickasaws
By R. B. Henderson
Source: The South Reporter, Nov. 25, 1965
Submitted by Martha Fant
Marshall County was one of the original and the largest of the 16 counties formed in 1836 from lands secured from the Chickasaw Indians, the aboriginal inhabitants of this area.
Tribal headquarters and chief residential areas of the tribe were in the Chickasaw Old Fields near the site of the present city of Tupelo. This tribe of Indians was small and its warriors, at peak of population, never numbered over a few hundred but were so fierce and warlike that no other tribe of Indians or expeditionary forces of any European country, were ever able to occupy their domain without having first secured permission of the ruling chieftains.
Soon alter the arrival of the French and the Spanish in the southern part of the New World, each country secured the ill will of the Chickasaws and, true to Indian nature, they never forgave their transgressors.
The enmity of the Chickasaws toward the Spanish was brought about by the cruelties of the soldiers of the De Soto Expedition of 1540. The Chickasaws were kind to the Spanish upon arrival in their territory but cruelties of the invaders soon brought about conflict. On a dark winter night in 1540, the Indians attacked the Spanish camp in what is now Pontotoc County and, although they were driven off, the Spanish losses were heavy. The next morning De Soto broke camp and marched westward out of Chickasaw territory.
Next visitors of the Chickasaws were the French in the 1730s. Though not as cruel as the Spaniards, friction between the Chickasaws and French developed when the French demanded that the Chickasaws turn over to them refugee warriors of the Natchez tribe who had fled to the Chickasaws to escape retaliation for the massacre of the French at Ft. Rosalie. The Chickasaws refused and Bienville, French governor at New Orleans, determined to punish the proud Chickasaws. Bienville himself led an expedition from Mobile up the Tombigbee River to the Chickasaw village around Tupelo. In the attack he was repulsed with frightful losses. However, the Chickasaws did not pursue and Bienville with surviving forces succeeded in reaching his boats on the Tombigbee River and made an inglorious return to Mobile.
Prior to beginning his march, Bienville ordered D'Artguette, commander of the French forces in the Illinois Colony, to sail down the Mississippi River to the Chickasaw Bluffs where Memphis now stands and march overland for a joint attack against the Chickasaw village in the Chickasaw Old Fields.
D'Artguette advanced over a well-traveled Indian trail that led from the Bluffs to the Tennessee River, said to have been beaten out by the buffalo in their wanderings between the two rivers.
At Mt. Pleasant, he turned southeastward over another Indian trail leading to the villages in the Chickasaw Old Fields. This trail led through the later sites of Old Hudsonville, Old Salem and thence through Tippah County to the village of Blue Springs and from there southward to the Tupelo area.
D'Artguette arrived first and attacked the villages without awaiting the arrival of Bienville who had been delayed in his departure. D'Artguette was defeated and captured by the fierce Chickasaws with 23 of his companions. After the defeat of Bienville by the Chickasaws a few days later, D'Artguette and his unfortunate companions were burned at the stake.
The march of the French soldiers through Marshall County was likely the first time that any white man had trod its soil.
Although neither of these expeditions were of any great significance from a military standpoint, they were to play a great role in the later colonization of North Mississippi. The Chickasaws maintained their unrelenting hatred of both the French and Spanish, and it was impossible for either nation to attempt to colonize the northern area of what is now the state of Mississippi.
On the other hand, the English were kindly in their early association with the Chickasaws and in turn were always welcomed by the Indians. English and early American traders came early into the Chickasaw country. This association made firm friends of the simple Indians and later colonization of the state by English and American settlers was accomplished without bloodshed.
In the late 1820s pressure for the removal of the Chickasaws to a reservation west of the Mississippi increased and unscrupulous politicians who wished to make money out of the Indian lands used every means in their power to bring about the migration. Finally, yielding to the pressure, the Chickasaws ceded their lands at the Treaty of Pon te tok in 1832. Terms of sale, removal and payment or exchange or lands were not worked out until 1834 and deeds from the departing Chickasaws were first written and recorded in 1836. Traders, white people who were living among the Indians and speculators, however, traded many of the Indians out of their birthrights before formal sales were begun, depending upon the Indians to give them a deed when they presented a claim at the land office. In every instance, as far as have been preserved, the Indians did so.
The General Land Office was located at the newly formed town of Pontotoc and here the bulk of the sales were handled. Most of the Indians lived in the Tupelo and Pontotoc area.
Fear of the Northern Indians, who were friendly with the French and who frequently made raids down the Mississippi River, had greatly retarded settlement by the Chickasaws of this area from which the northwestern counties were formed and there were vast areas or trackless forests and uninhabited regions. Nevertheless, the Chickasaws owned the lands of this area and, when surveyed and allotted, they were put up for sale.
There was so large an area in the northwestern counties that a branch land office was opened up in Holly Springs. The building for the land office was erected at the corner of Memphis Street and Gholson Avenue. It was built of brick and is standing today, occupied as a residence by Mrs. Lynn Hopson. Later, this building was to be associated closely with the greatest catastrophe ever to strike our section or the state, the yellow fever epidemic of 1878.
With the opening of the land office, sales of land in this area were greatly augmented and soon every section of the county had its early quota of settlers. Migration into the county was mainly from the east. Many of the first settlers came into Pontotoc over the old Natchez Trace and thence on into the county over the pioneer road later to be known as the "Pidgeon Roost Road." This road was cleared out by the United States Government from 1832 to 1836 over which to remove the Indians to the west.
The present route of Highway 78 was little used in the days of colonization because of so much swampy area, rivers and creeks that had no bridges.
The Pidgeon Roost Road led to Pontotoc, via Toccopola, Oxford and, alter crossing the Tallahatchie River, turned northwest just before reaching the later village of Old Waterford. From there it wound its way through Pidgeon Roost Creek bottom to Byhalia and on into Memphis, following the general course of present Highway 78.
Another early road was the Chulahoma Road. This led from Old Wyatt on the Tallahatchie via Chulahoma to Byhalia. At Byhalia it forked, one fork connecting with the Memphis and Tuscumbia Road in the vicinity of Collierville, Tennessee. The other fork entered Memphis from the south and its present course through the city of Memphis is now known as Chulahoma Avenue.
The Memphis and Tuscumbia Road, referred to earlier in this article is said to have been beaten out by buffalo playing between the Mississippi and Tennessee Rivers and was used by the Chickasaws for centuries. Thousands of immigrants poured into the Chickasaw counties over this old road.
The other main route of travel was over the Indians' "Wet Weather Trail" that led from Pontotoc to the Bluffs where Memphis now stands. This old road came through the county from the east and went through the later villages of Old Salem and Old Hudsonville, connecting at Mt. Pleasant with the Tuscumbia Road. By following the crest of the ridges, the Indians and early pioneers avoided all river crossings and much swampy area. After the country was settled up and new roads surveyed, this route was abandoned because it was so much further than direct routes of travel.
There were, of course, many other pioneer routes of travel and trails used by the early settlers. Modern roads, population shifts and other changing conditions have obliterated many of these historic old roads.
Records of early days and first settlers in Holly Springs and Marshall County are dim and much historical data of great importance has been irretrievab1y lost to the obscurity of long passed years. This being the status quo, we can only assemble data now available and attempt to reconcile conflicting versions preserved in memoirs and traditions gathered from many and diverse sources. This is, indeed, a most difficult task for, aside from the missing pages, there are collections of historical data published by one authority that are completely at variance with publications of others. We shall do the best we can with no desire to contradict or argue with the declarations of others. And we hope that every one who reads these columns will appreciate our spirit and objective.
It is entirely likely that white, or halfbreed traders or adventurers, lived in Holly Springs at intervals, or perhaps continuously, long before the Chickasaws ceded their lands. The great spring surrounded by holly trees is known to have been a favorite camping ground of Indians in the patrol of their domain long before the coming of the white man.
The first thing of substance regarding a settlement around the spring was printed in the centennial edition of the Commercial Appeal some years ago. This information was taken from record books and notes of William Mizle, a halfbreed, Indian and French, who opened a trading post at the Chickasaw Bluffs where Memphis now stands, soon after the Spaniards gave up their claim to the lower Mississippi Valley about the turn of the 18th century. Mizle married a daughter of Piomingo, a senior chief of the Chickasaws, whose home was on a high hill in what is now Calhoun County. Mizle had lived among the Chickasaws for many years and was a widely traveled trader and even dealt with the Spanish in Pensacola, Florida. When he opened up the trading post at the Chickasaw Bluffs, the first business house in Memphis, he kept a record of sales to Indians from around the main villages in Lee, Pontotoc and Chickasaw Counties.
Mizle bought corn whiskey from the flatboats coming down the Mississippi River from Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana and peddled it to the trade in what is now north Mississippi. In one entry of his Journal, he mentions that, to accommodate his trade, he stored whiskey at "the great holly springs some miles south of the Bluffs". This was likely the great spring in "Spring Hollow."
That Mizle had a post here in 1803 is further borne out by the Journal of a traveler on the Natchez Trace in 1803. The traveler stated that he spent several days at the home of General William Colbert who lived near the Federal Agency located about two miles south of the present village of Old Houlka, Chickasaw County. He stated that William Colbert was a great drinker and, having run out of whiskey, walked to Mizle's post at the holly springs and bought seven kegs of whiskey; Colbert then started home and, just after arriving there, "drank the last of the seventh keg, having consumed three days upon the trip."
Another historian states that when Alexander C. McEwen came to North Mississippi in 1834, "activity was centered around the spring in the hollow." McEwen opened a store and directed that goods be shipped to him at "The Holly Springs." At any rate, the name stuck and Holly Springs became the name of the county seat. Before becoming the county seat, the new settlement was also known as "Clarendon" and then "Paris".
When the county was organized, Holly Springs, Chulahoma, Hudsonville and Tallaloosa became contenders for the county seat, Holly Springs winning by a very narrow margin over Chulahoma.
Holly Springs was incorporated on May 12, 1837. Owners of land upon which the new town was located made a donation of 50 acres to the city and a large portion of this land was sold for enough money to build a courthouse and jail "with some left over for educational purposes."
Location of the branch land office was a great boost to the economy of Holly Springs. In the rush to purchase lands from the departing Chickasaws there came about many conflicting claims in titles.
This was a boost to the legal profession and many lawyers came to share in the legal work. Among them were such legal giants as Roger Barton, Harvey W. Walter, J. W. C. Watson, J. E. Chalmers, J. W. Clapp, E. C. Walthall, Henry Craft, A. B. Bradford, W. S. Featherston, Wm. M. Strickland, L. Q. C. Lamar, James L. Autry, Christopher Mott, William Finley and others. Many of these distinguished attorneys became well known political and military figures of the state.
The first courthouse was a two story frame structure and, like courthouses of the era, had a wooden fence around it to which horses and mules were hitched. It was burned in 1864 by federal soldiers under Federal General J. A. Smith, who had burned the town of Oxford before reaching Holly Springs.
The second courthouse, a brick building, was built in 1872 under contract to J. B. Fant. A $25,000 bond issue supported by a tax levy supplied the funds. The courthouse has always been the main meeting place for organizations and meetings of community interest. The lawn has always been a favorite meeting place for citizens and a kind of recreational center. A well known historian of Holly Springs recalls that Marshall County has had one woman sheriff. Mrs. C. A. Jones, and one woman deputy sheriff, Mrs. Janie M. Lyon.
The growth and progress of Holly Springs in most fields of endeavor throughout the ante bellum years was steady. The fertile lands of the surrounding farming area produced great yields of crops and the city's people became "well-fixed" or wealthy. Many large planters lived in the city, and others built palatial plantation homes.
The city was always deeply interested in education and schools were opened as soon as the first few settlers arrived. Likewise, the citizens were of a deeply religious nature and churches of the several faiths were built as the town settled up.
Source: Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Mississippi, Goodspeed Publishing Company, 1890, pages 256-258
Located on the northern border of the state, bounded by the Tennessee state line on the north, Tallahatchie River on the south, Benton County on the east and DeSoto and Tate counties on the west, Marshall county is traversed from northwest to southwest by the Kansas City, Memphis & Birmingham railroad, and from north to south by the Illinois Central railroad, these two great trunk lines intersecting at Holly Springs, the county seat, which is distant forty-five miles from Memphis, two hundred miles from Birmingham, the great coal and iron center, and about three hundred and seventy-five miles from each of the cities of New Orleans, St. Louis and Louisville. The water
courses of the county are Coldwater, Pigeon Roost, Chewalla, Spring creek and Tallahatchie river, on southern border of the county.
The principal products of the county are cotton, corn, small grain and every variety of vegetable that grows in this latitude. The timber growth consists of all kinds of oak, hickory, walnut, poplar, gum, beech, maple, cypress, etc. All kinds of fruits do well, such as apples, peaches, grapes, figs, plums, apricots, etc.; also the small fruits, all of which could be grown with profit for the Chicago and St. Louis markets. Apples and peaches are not a certain crop, owing to the occasional disaster of late frost; but in the absence of such frost, as is the case this year, these fruits are both superior and abundant. At the New Orleans exposition the Marshall county exhibit of apples, peaches and pears took a number of first premiums. Pears, plums, cherries, quinces, strawberries and raspberries grow readily, in the greatest quantities, of magnificent size and of delicious varieties; while blackberries flourish in every fence corner. Grapes of all known American varieties are raised with unfailing success. Pasturage is good and extensive, consisting of Bermuda grass, native grasses and switchcane. Stock farming and sheep husbandry could be made profitable.
Few places in Mississippi are so favorably situated. Holly Springs is an important station on the Illinois Central railroad. The railroad company have established here an excellent hotel. The Memphis and Birmingham branch of the Kansas City, Fort Scott and Gulf road connects the West with the Alabama and Atlantic seaboard. Thus Holly Springs is most desirably located as regards communication with the rest of the world, which fact, together with its exceptional health, makes it a comparatively good point for manufactories or industrial enterprises of any description.
Besides Holly Springs, population twenty-two hundred and thirty-two, the towns and postoffices of the county are Barton, Bethlehem, Byhalia (population five hundred), Cayce, Chulahoma, Colbert, Coleman, Cornersville, Early Grove, Hudsonville, Law's Hill, Mahon, Marianna, Mount Pleasant, Orion, Potts Camp, Red Banks, Searcy, Slayden's Crossing, Victoria, Wall Hill, Watson and Waterford. This county had a population of seventeen thousand five hundred and twenty-six in 1840, twenty-nine thousand and eighty nine in 1850; twenty-eight thousand eight hundred and twenty-three in 1860, twenty-nine thousand four hundred and sixteen in 1870, twenty-nine thousand three hundred and thirty in 1880, twenty-six thousand and forty-three in 1890. In 1860 it had nineteen hundred and seventeen voters and fifteen thousand four hundred and forty-eight taxable slaves. The colored population in 1870 was sixteen thousand four hundred and ninety nine; in 1880, eighteen thousand three hundred and thirty-eight; in 1890, sixteen thousand five hundred and eight.
This section suffered greatly during the war. Holly Springs, which was for a time Grant's headquarters, is famous historically as the scene of Van Dorn's raid on the Federal stores. On December 20, 1862, the dashing Southern general, with a small force, surprised the troops left behind the Grant, who was fifty miles away marching on Jackson. The Federals were all captured and paroled. Grant's immense stores, ammunition, etc., were then entirely destroyed. The medical supplies had been placed for security in a large building used as a foundry and the ammunition in a stable. The loss inflicted on Grant was enormous, amounting to millions of dollars, necessitating his return and an entire change in his plans for the campaign. Many interesting incidents of the raid are told by old residents. The old courthouse was burnt by Grant and most of the city by Van Dorn. Soon after the war the present courthouse was erected. It is a large brick building, surrounded by an unusually well kept grass lawn, at whose edge shade trees in great and rare varieties give an additional charming effect. In the summer, when the foliage and flowers are at their best, the courthouse square is very handsome and the inhabitants have every reason to pride themselves on it.
Marshall county was established February 9, 1836, and was originally settled by a class of planters unusually intelligent, patriotic and public spirited, many of whom became prominent and well known. The merchants who founded Holly Springs were of the same class of large minded men. In ante-bellum times Marshall county was the empire county of Mississippi; its soil was very fertile, and its yield of cotton very large. Its topography is varied, being in the main slightly rolling, and well drained by many streams.
Source: Mississippi, The Heart of the South, Vol. II, Chapter XLIV, pages 787-791, by Dunbar Rowland, LL.D., Director of the Mississippi State Department of Archives and History; Chicago-Jackson: The S.J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1925.
One of the far northern counties of the State, on the Tennessee border, Marshall County was established February 9, 1836, the year in which the Chickasaw session of 1832 was divided by the commonwealth into political organizations. It was named for Chief Justice John Marshall and formerly included within its area a considerable portion of Benton, Tate, and several other counties. The act creating the county defined its limits as follows: "Beginning at the point where the line of the basis meridian intersects the northern boundary line of the State, and running thence south with the said basis meridian line, to the center, of township 6; thence west through the center of township 6, according to the sectional lines, to the center of range 5 west; thence north through the center of range 5 west, according to the sectional lines, to the northern boundary line of the State, and thence east with the said boundary line, to the beginning."
Its original area was about 23 townships or 828 square miles. In 1870 it gave up part of its territory on the east to Benton County, and in 1873 it gave up another portion of its area to assist in the formation of Tate County, and received in lieu of the portion surrendered to Tate, all that portion of De Soto County lying within townships 1 and 2, R. 5 west. Subsequent slight modifications of its boundaries have resulted in reducing its area to 689 square miles. It is an attractive stretch of country, located on the extreme northern border of the State next to Tennessee, and is bounded on the east by Benton County, on the south by Lafayette County, the Tallahatchie River forming part of the dividing line in the southeastern corner, and on the west by Tate and De Soto counties.
The following is a list of its civil officers for the year 1837: William H. Bourland, Clerk of Probate; James C. Alderson, Clerk of Circuit Court; Thomas Lane, Probate Judge; M.J. Blackwell, Surveyor; Frederick Wells, Assessor and Collector; Thomas J. Oliver, Treasurer; Benj. Daluron, Coroner; T. McCrosky, Sheriff; G.W. Graham, Ranger; Dickson Rogers, Henry White, Wm. Hicks, W.C. Edmundson, E.H. Patts, Board of Police; John Roaks, T.L. Treadwell, D.E. Brittonum, Henry Moore, Milton P. Johnson, Geo. W. Wry, T.M. Yancy, J.C. Randolph, J.B. Cockran, Robert Carson, Justices of the Peace; John P. Planes, James Rhodes, Sillmane Weaver, John M. Malone, Lewis Johnston, Constables.
Marshall County received its full share of settlers during the early rush of emigration into the newly opened Chickasaw cession. By the year 1840, it had a population of about 17,500, and by the year 1850 the population was 29,089. Among these were many prominent families and wealthy planters.
Three of the earliest settlements were at Tallaloosa, located about 8 miles southwest of Holly Springs, on the Pigeon Roost Creek, Waterford, one mile west of the station of the same name on the Illinois Central railroad, and the place of muster for the militia of that part of the State; and Hudsonville, about 4 miles southwest of old Lamar, on the stage road from Lagrange, Tennessee, to Holly Springs, Mississippi, and 2 miles southeast of the station of the same name on the Illinois Central railroad. All three places are now practically extinct.
Its chief town and county seat is Holly Springs, the "City of Flowers," containing 2,100 inhabitants reflecting the States best type of population and located near the center of the county at the junction of the Illinois Central, and the Kansas City, Memphis & Birmingham railways. Addison Craft, one of the pioneers of Marshall County, states that it was named by the roadsters who traveled from the Chickasaw Bluffs to the land office at Pontotoc. At this spot they found an extensive ravine covered with holly, and having some thirty or more clear, cold springs of water. It was an excellent camping ground and the camp was called Holly Springs. It is the center of a good dairy and market-garden region, and has a number of flourishing industries. It is also the seat of the Mississippi Synodical College, and the North Mississippi Experiment Station. It was here that General Van Dorn made his celebrated raid on the Federal stores left behind by Grant, December 20, 1862. The history of the region appears in several places in the course of the narrative history of the State. Some of the other more important settlements of Marshall County are Byhalia, Potts Camp, Redbanks, Waterford and Hudsonville.
The region lies in the yellow loam district, its surface is undulating, level on the river and creek bottoms. The soil on the bottom lands is fertile, on some of the upland ridges poor and sandy and on many of the table lands quite productive. Excellent pasturage is to be had and the live stock industry is very profitable. Its close proximity to the large city of Memphis (50 miles), and the two important lines of railroad which cross its surface, the Illinois Central and the Kansas City, Memphis & Birmingham, give it a ready outlet for its numerous products. The more important water courses in the county are the Tallahatchie River on the south and its tributaries, and the numerous creeks flowing west, which constitute the headwaters of the Coldwater River.
Marshall is one of the old and prosperous counties of northern Mississippi. The census issued by the national government in 1920 indicates as much. From the statistics of that report it is learned that the entire farm properties of Marshall County were valued at $11,000,000, and of this amount the live stock was figured at nearly $2,000,000. Approximately, the proportion of the value of the live stock was credited as follows: Mules, one-third; horses, one-fourth and dairy cattle about the same as horses. Much good fruit is also raised in Marshall County, which has 18,000 bearing trees, the bulk of which are peach. Finally, it may be noted that the farmers have adopted the prevailing custom in Mississippi of raising vegetables both for home consumption and shipment; the value of that crop in 1919 is given as $282,000.
On account of its various changes in territory, the population of Marshall County has not increased since the taking of the first census in 1850; in fact, it was larger in 1850 (29,689) than in 1920 (26,105). At no time during this long period has the population fallen below 26,000, although in 1880 it passed 29,000.
History of Marshall County
Source: A History of Mississippi, from the Discovery of the Great River by Hernando DeSoto, including the Earliest Settlement Made by the French, Under Iberville, to the Death of Jefferson Davis, pages 533-537, by Robert Lowry and William H. McCardle. Jackson, Miss.: R. H. Henry & Co. 1891.
Images of pages submitted by Denise Wells, of the MSGenWeb Project.
Named in honor of the great jurist, John Marshall, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, was established February 9th, 1836.
Among the early settlers were Frederick Huling, circuit judge, and George Wilson, district attorney, Judge Alex. M. Clayton, who was both circuit and supreme judge, an able and painstaking lawyer, father-in-law of the present capable and popular circuit judge, Hon. Jas. T. Fant; Roger Barton, a prominent lawyer and politician; Samuel Benton, an excellent lawyer, was Colonel of the Thirty-seventh Mississippi regiment, and was killed during the war; Hon. John W. C. Watson, a great lawyer, a Senator in the Confederate States Congress, delegate to the Convention in 1868, afterwards circuit judge for six years; was the father of James Watson, a lawyer of high character, residing in Memphis, and of the late Edward M. Watson, one of the most brilliant and promising young lawyers of the State; the late Harvey W. Walter, a lawyer of high character, of courtly and agreeable manners, served on the staff of General Bragg with the rank of Colonel, was at one time the nominee of the Whig party for Governor; Joseph W. Chalmers was vice-chancellor and was appointed United States Senator to fill the vacancy occasioned by the resignation of Eobert J. Walker; was subsequently elected for the vacant term; he was the father of Gen. Jas. R., and the late H. H. Chalmers; the former was district attorney, State Senator, and afterwards a member of Congress; the latter, a lawyer of recognized ability, was serving his second term as supreme judge at the time of his death; Hon. Alex. B. Bradford, who was Major of the famous First Mississippi regiment, commanded by Colonel Davis in Mexico; he served in the State Legislature, and was an honorable, impulsive and generous gentleman; Major James F. Totten, P. W. Lucas, John H. Anderson and Wm. Finlay, lawyers. The foregoing gentlemen constituted the members of the bar of Marshall at an early day.
Among the early settlers may be numbered Dr. Barton, Dr. F. O. Caruthers, Wm. B. Taylor, John Pittman, Joseph and A. T. Caruthers, Randolph Mott, father of the gallant Brigadier-General C. H. Mott; Aaron Woodruff, Jesse Lewellen, Jesse P. Norfleet, Gordentia Waite, who was clerk of the probate court for twenty years; John E. McCarroll, sheriff of the county for twenty years; O. D. Watson, N. R. Sledge, John A. Leroy, Jas. Sims, Jas. Greer, Robt. S. Greer, who represented the county in both branches of the Legislature, as did Charles S. Thomas, John Gibbons and Wm. Davis; the Hull family, Wm. Crump, Andrew L., and John D. Martin, the Lamkin family, A. N. Mayer, Robert H. and Wm. Wall, J. W. Hill, John B. and Jas. W. Fant and Sanders Taylor, were planters of prominence; B. W. Walthall, a prominent citizen, highly respected, the father of General E. C. Walthall, a lawyer of distinction, a distinguished Major-General in the Confederate army, twice elected United States Senator; Judge R. S. Stith, an able, accurate and well-informed lawyer, the uncle of the late Hon. Kinloch Falconer, known so well throughout the western army as Adjutant-General; after the war he was elected Lieut.-Governor on the Humphreys ticket, that defeated the Constitution of 1868, and was subsequently elected Secretary of State, which position he held at the time of his death; W. M. Strickland, who held the rank of Major in the Confederate service, and a lawyer of high character and standing. In the Lamar neighborhood were Hon. Andrew R. Govan, a native of South Carolina, twice elected to Congress from that State, the father of Brigadier-General Govan, of Arkansas, and of Major George M. Govan, who has served as Clerk of the House of Representatives, member of the Legislature, and now filling his second term as Secretary of State; Dr. G. W. and Col. Wm. B. Smith, T. L. Treadwell, Dr. J. Y. Cummings, William Copwood, Thomas Mull, Thomas J. Henderson, Hon. Joseph W. Matthews, previously mentioned. In the neighborhood of Mt. Pleasant were J. C. Barrett, Dr. Marshall, James H. Hale, John R. Norfleet, John Steger and William McFerren.
In the Early Grove vicinity were Maxwell Wilson, Major Barringer, the Franklins, Jas. Pool and D. A. Abernathy.
In the region of Bainesville were Wm. Bailey, John Barron, Jas. Wiseman, N. R. Carrington and Jonathan Bogen.
About Byhalia were Sterling Withers, Clark C. White, Wilson Durham, Absalom Myers, father of the late Col. George C. Myers, who commanded a regiment in the war, and for years clerk of the circuit court, also of Hon. Henry C. Myers, who was sheriff of the county and served two terms as Secretary of State; W. J. Williams, Stephen, D. Y. and Robert Harris, and the families of Rainford.
About Wall Hill and Watson were Wm. Wall, John Sharp, Levi Fowler, Harvey Nichols, Simpson Payne and Isaac McCampbell.
The early settlers near Chulahoma, were C. P. Strickland, R. C. Goodall, Thos. Lane, Wm. McEwen, Dr. C. S. Brown, W. W. Nevil, Wm. D. Ellis, Solomon Dutz, D. M. Young, D. M. Davis, Joseph Dean, father of Hon. R. A. Dean, State Senator from Lafayette, and a delegate from that county to the Constitutional Convention of 1890; Edward Cox, Volney Peel, Edward Norfleet, Wm. Echols, Jas. Glover, A. P. Armstead, L. M. James, Chas. Eastman.
In the Black Border neighborhood were Jeremiah Tucker, a Baptist minister, John R. Strickland, F. Woods, Samuel and W. P. Johnson.
Waterford was settled by Dr. Thos. J. Malone, prior to the organization of the county, and soon after came James Moring, Wilcox Jones, John and Elijah Bordneau, Jack Peace, John and George Sherman, Harris O. Allen and Jas. Greer.
In the neighborhood of Bethlehem and Potts' Camp were E. F. Potts, John Morgan, William Poe, Wm. Cook, D. A. Alvis and the Jarnegans.
In the vicinity of Hudsonville were Capt. Peters, Robert Hunt, John McKee, Peter Seals, Dabney Miner, Wm. Arthur, Spearman and Kemp Holland.
The following are the principal towns in the county: Holly Springs, the county site, Byhalia, Red Banks, Victoria, Potts' Camp; the last four named are situated on the Kansas City, Memphis and Birmingham Railroad; Hudsonville and Waterford are situated on the Illinois Central Railroad.
The following towns in the county are not located on any railroad: Mount Pleasant, Early Grove, Oak Grove, Bainesville, Watson, Wall Hill, Chulahoma, Bethlehem and Cornersville.
The county is penetrated by two important railroads. The Illinois Central enters the State in Benton county and runs nearly south by the city of Holly Springs, the full length of the county, a distance of twenty-seven miles. The Kansas City, Memphis & Birmingham Railroad enters the county on the north-west border, and runs south-east through the county a distance of thirty-six miles.
The principal streams in the county are Cold Water and Little Cold Water, penetrating the north-west portion of the county, Pigeon Roost, and Chuffawah on the west, Chewalla, Big Spring, and Little Spring Creeks, and Tippah and Tallahatchie rivers.
Holly Springs, or "the City of Flowers," is eligibly located and widely known for the hospitality and culture of its people.
Marshall county has 172,725 acres of cleared land; average value per acre as rendered to the assessor, $5.71. Total value of cleared lands, including incorporated towns and cities, $1,641,462.
The population of this county as shown by the census report of 1890: Whites, 9,533; colored, 16,508; total, 26,041.
||K. S. Holland, B. C. Harley, B. Hill, Wm. Davis
||Roger Barton, K. S. Holland B. Hill, B. C. Harley
||L. R. Grey, T. Mull, J. W. Mathews, D. S. Greer
||Wm. R. Harley
||J. J. Finley, H. O. Allen, W. Crump. H. H. Means
||Joseph W. Matthews
||H. O. Allen, R. S. Greer
||Joseph W. Matthews
||R. S. Greer, J. L. Totien, J. J. Steger, Robt. Josselyn
||Joseph W. Matthews
||J. L. Totten, E. F. Potts, T. J. Malone, J. H. Cowan
||R. S. Greer
||J. J. Steger, C. L. Thomas, J. C. Anderson, R. Phillips
||R. S. Greer
||Roger Barton, C. L. Thomas, T. J. Malone, C. H. Mott
||R. S. Greer
||Samuel Benton, Jas. H. R. Taylor, A. B. Bradford, J. C. Gobbins
||R. S. Greer
||J. L. Autry, Thomas Mull, Russell Dean
||R. S. Greer
||J. L. Autry, J. L. Dunlap, T. J. Hudson, J. W. Clapp
||William T. Mason
||T. J. Hudson, J. L. Autry, J. R. Norfleet, R. Phillips
||William T. Mason
||B. R. Long, T. L. Dunlap, R. Dean, J. L. Hudson, A. Q. Withers
||William T. Mason
||J. L. Hudson, T. L. Dunlap, R. Dean, B. R. Long, W. A. Withers
||Robert S. Greer
||W. M. Compton, G. H. Mosely, F. J. Malone, J. R. Daniel, A. Q. Withers
||J. H. R. Taylor
||Wm. Wall, J. R. Daniel, R. P. Brown, A. M. Lyles, B. T. Weber
||Henry M. Paine
||E. Buchanan, W. L. Jones, E. P. Hatch
||Henry M. Paine
|| W. F. Hyer, John Calhoon, J. H. Tucker, E. H. Crump
||W. F. Hyer, John Calhoon, J. H. Tucker, E. H. Crump
||N. G. Gill, A. A. Rodgers, R. Williams, A. Peal
||W. S. Featherston, J. C. Amacker, E. Aldrich, Wm. C. Warren
||A. M. West
||E. Aldrich, Wm. C. Warren, W. R. Montgomery, R. Cunningham
||A. M. West
||W. S. Featherston, S. W. Mullins, E. J. Marrett, G. C. Selby
||W. F. Hyer
||A. F. Brown, R. J. McCall, G. W. McKie, W. D. Rodman
||W. F. Hyer
|| J. W. C. Watson, S. W. Mullins, R. A. Baird
||Thos. M. Kemp
||W. J. McKinney, R. A. Baird, G. W. McKie
||Thos. M. Kemp
||W. J. McKinney, T. B. Luck, R. S. Greer
||M. J. McKinney
||A. M. West, Ed. S. Watson, J. T. Brown