1809 Elk River Intruders
The Cherokee Land Session of 1806 resulted in a rash of new settlements in the newly-ceded territory, which included much of present-day Giles County, but continued to exclude most of the southwest quadrant still untreated with the Chickasaw. Nevertheless, many of the settlers were westward of the Congressional Reservation Line, resulting in a number of clashes between soldiers and settlers, the latter known as Intruders. (1)
Although the following is a compiled list and does not specify the settlement, a variety of records document that at least some of these men had settled in what would become Giles county rather than Alabama. Other sources (2) indicate that the first round-up by soldiers in 1809 netted 166 settlers, of whom 93 were from the Simms Settlement. As can be seen from the list that follows, a number of Giles countians were among those corraled by Meigs' soldiers, although many other intruders were not rounded up (estimated at 2,250 by Simms' Settlemeent petitioners in 1810). By September of the following year, at least 49 of the original Simms settlers, including five widows, had returned when 466 men and women petitioned the President to permit them to remain on their improvements pending the signing of a treaty with the Chickasaws (See 1810 Simms'es Settlement Petition)
Many of these names and those on the 1810 Elk River Intruder Petition are also on the 1812 Giles county tax list, and a sampling has been indicated by the use of the symbol after the name.
Intruders List, 1809
(List of those removed from Chickasaw Indian Lands)
Ref: Record Group 75, Cherokee Indian Agency, Tennessee Records, National Archives)
Wm. Bradley Jr. Wido.
Wm . Bradley Sr. Wido
George Brown Jr.
George. Brown Sr.
John Wm. Gray
Wm. Greehaws Jnr.
Anne Greene Wido.
Wm. Hatton Wido.
Wm. Hood Jr.
Wm. Hood Sr.
David Norris Wido.
Keziah Sims Wido.
Lully Williams Wido.
(1) See The Early History and Boundaries of Giles for more detailed and History of the Intruders for more details about the Intruders.
(2) "Sims Settlement, Our Squatter Ancestors, 1806-1818," Ruth Dixon, Bob Priest, P. 5; and Settlers And Intruders On Cherokee Indian Lands, 1801-1816 by Janell Swearingen, 1989
The second source above includes transcriptions from what appear to be several original lists. Those lists differ in a number of respects from this compiled list, and some of those differences follow:
Reuben RIGGS of Giles Co, TN stated in his 1832 Revolutionary War pension application that he removed to Giles County in 1808 from Grainger Co, TN.
Luck KILE appears on a list titled "Intruders In Sims's Settlement May 27th 1809" as "Widow Lukey Kile." Also on this Sim's list is William KILE, who appears on both the 1810 Intruders' petition, and the 1812 Giles County tax list, and is identified by both Goodspeeds and McCallum as an early Giles County resident. McCallum states that "James FORD, James WILLIAMS, Parish SIMMS, Thos. DODD, Simon FOY, and Thos. KYLE, with their families started from Hawkins County in East Tennessee in the Spring of 1807 with four boats, when the boats had ascended Elk about opposite SIMMS' settlement three of the boats with the SIMMSES, KYLE and others went out to view the country, and concluded to stop there and settled what was long known as SIMMS' settlement, in Limestone Co., AL," but that James FORD ascended the Elk to settle just above the mouth of what is now known as Ford's Creek, and that "Two or three months after FORD came, Major Wm. KYLE came and settled on the south side of the river, opposite Prospect." Thomas DODD and Simon FOY are both on this Sim's list as well as the compiled 1809 list, with Simon LOY(?) and Thomas DODD listed adjacent to each other, respectively. James FORD may be the above Jane FORD mistranscribed since the Sim's list includes James FORD listed near Edward DAVIS and Roland McKINNEY who follow.
Joseph MAPLE, Edward DAVIS and Roland McKENNEY (McKINNEY(also on this list) are all on the 1812 Giles County tax list, as is a John SIMS, and Early Giles land records show that the four all lived between Fords and Wells Creek on the Elk River.
Rolla DOTSON is Raleigh DODSON and believed to have been Raleigh, Jr., s/o Raleigh and Mary DODSON of Hawkins Co, TN. He is found on both the 1810 Intruders Petition and the 1812 Giles County, Tax list, but not thereafter. In 1815, a Mary DODSON is found in Giles court records as widow of Raleigh, but this is thought to have been his father's wife. Raleigh Jr. is also thought to have been the Raleigh DODSON who died in Williamson County in 1836 (See Dodson Families of Giles County)
William COMBS appears on a list titled "May 29th 1809 Intruders Limestone Settlement" states: "Mr. Combs (wife lying in)." Presumably Mrs. Combs was pregnant, and it is not certain whether "Mr. Combs" was the same as William COMBS due to the possibility that Mr. and Mrs. COMBS may have been John and Jean JACKSON Combs who married 15 Jul 1807 in Grainger Co, TN. Their son, Carlton Wilbur COMBS, stated in a letter written in 1885 that he was born on 17 Jun 1809 in Huntsville, Madison County, Alabama. He stated that just prior to his birth, his parents were living "in a cane brake on Duck River, in what is now Maury County and near where Columbia is now situated." Having long lived outside of Tennessee, and given his statement regarding Nashville, it appears he did not know the area well, so the accuracy of his statement as to where his parents were living is in question. He did state that his parents experienced "unexpected difficulties," that the "Indians were not only too thick but made themselves entirely too familiar with anything and everything about the premises, to which they took a fancy, especially in the lines of provisions," and that this "made it necessary for father to go somewhere where there was a settlement of white human beings to procure supplies. The nearest place to them at that time, as I suppose, of the desired sort was Huntsville, Alabama. Nashville is nearer now but I think it probably at time were there no Nashville as Knoxville was then the capitol of Tenn. At any rate his went to Huntsville, leaving mother in this wilderness place with only a niece (Sarah, daughter of Uncle Phillip Combs) with her. After father left, the Indians became more bold and more aggressive and although the doors were kept securely pinned bolted and barred, the Indians on one occassion undertook to batter them down. But whether to scare the inmates or for plunder, I do not remember that I ever knew. But they did not remain here very long time for soon they found a home in or near Huntsville and while there on the 17th day of June, 1809 as before stated, I first saw light. So you can see I am a native Alabamian, by accident." (Carlton Wilbur Combs Letter of 1885) William HORNBECK of the above compiled list may be the "Mr. HORNBECK" of the Limestone Settlement list. The 1810 petition includes an Elye HORNBECK who may have been the same who married 25 Oct 1806, Jefferson County, TN, Sarah COMBS, sister of John and the above-noted Phillip COMBS. (Researcher C. Hammett)
Land of Our Ancestors
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