Weakley County, TN | Gilliams of Virginia

Gilliams of Weakley County, Tennessee
Updated March 17, 2016

Weakley_County TN.svg

Background
Weakley County was established October 21, 1823, from land ceded by the Chickasaw Indians and was named for Colonel Robert Weakley, who was then Speaker of The Tennessee State Senate. Weakley County encompasses 580 square miles. Dresden is the County seat and Gleason, Greenfield, Martin and Sharon make up the incorporated cities within the County. There are several small towns and communities in the county. They are Latham, Dukedom, Mount Pelia, Ore Springs, Gardner, Palmersville, and Ralston.


Overview
Weakley was first settled by Gray Gilliam of Albemarle Parish, Sussex County, VA and his wife Elizabeth Stewart. Traditionally Gray has been also referred to as George, but no known extant record refers to Gray Gilliam as George. Also, because it is said Gray had a grandson named Thomas Gray Gilliam, it has been posited that Gray was also a Thomas Gray Gilliam and that his grandson was a name sake. However, a close look at Gray’s birth and christening records show that Gray was not Thomas Gray Gilliam, but rather Gray Hutchins Gilliam, son of Agnes Gilliam of Albemarle Parish. The Albemarle Parish Register does not record a father for Gray.

It is likely that Gray’s father died before Gray was born, rather than Gray being the son of an unwed Agnes Gilliam. After Gray’s birth, Agnes remains an active member of Albemarle Parish, serving numerous times as a godparent. Agnes, if not a Gilliam, was likely a Hutchins as Gray is named Gray Hutchins Gilliam and that Agnes served as godparent for Mary Gilliam Hutchins the daughter of Howell Hutchins and Lydia Gilliam. Gray married Elizabeth Stewart, the daughter of John Stewart in 1795 in Sussex County, VA.

It has also been said that Gray after leaving Sussex County, VA passed through Halifax County, NC and eventually settled in Logan County, KY. Though Gray’s whereabouts from about 1799 until 1820 are unknown, there is no known evidence that Gray lived in either Halifax County, NC nor Logan County, KY. Elizabeth Stewart’s aunt, Frances Stewart married Marcus Gilliam and their descendants settled in Logan County, KY. This fact may be behind the tradition that Gray settled in Logan County. Tax record of Sussex may shed more light as to when Gray left Sussex.



Cemeteries
Meridian Cemetery
Gilliam, Ruth Evelyn, Nov, 1913 - Jan 1915
Gilliam, James Mack, June 4, 1891 - April 8, 1918 age 25y 9m 4d
Gilliam, W. N. N., Sept 22, 1842 - Sept 27, 1904, age 62y 5d
Gilliam, N. J., 1858 - Jan 10, 1918, wife of W. N. N. Gilliam age 60y
Gilliam, L. B., Oct 4, 1887 - April 27, 1899, age 11y 6m 23d
Gilliam, Thomas Nelson, Dec 22, 1882 - Aug 15, 1943
Gilliam, Maude Cooper, Aug 21, 1889 - Aug 16, 1950 and their infant
Weakley County, TN Cemeteries, Volume 1

Patterson Cemetery
Gilliam, Charlie Frank, Aug 20, 1897 - Dec 14, 1904, son of C. T. and Anne Gilliam
Gilliam, James E., June 10, 1901 - Feb 9, 1902, son of J. L. and E. B. Gilliam
Weakley County, TN Cemeteries, Volume 1

Grove Hill (Walkers Chapel) Cemetery
Gilliam, Thomas Lee, Dec 16, 1869 - Jan 7, 1954
Gilliam, Ethel Sandefer, June 10, 1880 - March 22, 1963
Weakley County, TN Cemeteries, Volume 2

Sandy Branch Church Cemetery
Gilliam, Annie, Jan 8, 1863 - Sept 29, 1920
Gilliam, Charlie, April 10, 1856 - July 31, 1938
Gilliam, Lela, 1889 - 19___
Gilliam, Claude, 1887 - 1954
Weakley County, TN Cemeteries, Volume 1

Sunrise Cemetery
Gilliam, Susan, May 3, 1903 -
Gilliam, Buford, July 30, 1898 - Sept 6, 1976
Weakley County, TN Cemeteries, Volume 1

West Union Church Cemetery
Gilliam, Cathenne, Sept 16, 1930 - Feb 3, 1933
Gilliam, Harvey B, 1895 - 1936
Gilliam, Jackie E, 1871 - 1953
Gilliam, Edmund, 1861 - 1936
Gilliam, Delbert, April 18, 1916 - April 28, ____
Gilliam, Della, July 18, 1914 - Oct 25, 1916
Gillum, William Jewell, Feb 26, 1902 - June 26, 1926
Weakley County, TN Cemeteries, Volume 1

Woodlawn Cemetery
Gilliam, Ella, 1872 - 1941
Gilliam, John L, 1866 - 1944
Weakley County, TN Cemeteries, Volume 1


Census
Several of the Census and Tax listings below are not from Weakley County, TN, but trace Gray Gilliam’s migration west.
1799 Personal Property Tax List B, Sussex County, VA.
GILLIAM, Gray, page 6
Binns Genealogy. 1790/1800 Tax Records.

1820

Gray Gilliam
Smith County, TN
Enumeration Date: August 7, 1820
Free White Males - Under 10: 1 [William]
Free White Males - 10 thru 15: 1 [Henry]
Free White Males - 45 and over: 1 [Gray]
Free White Females - Under 10: 3 [Nancy, Elizabeth, Martha]
Free White Females - 26 thru 44: 1 [Elizabeth]
Number of Persons - Engaged in Agriculture: 4
Slaves - Males - Under 14: 4
Slaves - Females - Under 14: 1
Free White Persons - Under 16: 5
Free White Persons - Over 25: 2
Total Free White Persons: 7
Total Slaves: 5
Total All Persons - White, Slaves, Colored, Other: 12

1830
Henry Gillum
Weakley County, TN
Free White Persons - Males - Under 5: 1
Free White Persons - Males - 20 thru 29: 1
Free White Persons - Females - Under 5: 1
Free White Persons - Females - 20 thru 29: 1
Free White Persons - Under 20: 2
Free White Persons - 20 thru 49: 2
Total Free White Persons: 4
Total - All Persons (Free White, Slaves, Free Colored): 4

William Gillum
Weakley County, TN
Free White Persons - Males - Under 5: 1
Free White Persons - Males - 5 thru 9: 1
Free White Persons - Males - 30 thru 39: 1
Free White Persons - Females - Under 5: 1
Free White Persons - Females - 5 thru 9: 1
Free White Persons - Females - 10 thru 14: 1
Free White Persons - Females - 20 thru 29: 1
Free White Persons - Under 20: 5
Free White Persons - 20 thru 49: 2
Total Free White Persons: 7
Total - All Persons (Free White, Slaves, Free Colored): 7

Gray Gillum
Weakley County, TN
Free White Persons - Males - 20 thru 29: 1
Free White Persons - Males - 60 thru 69: 1 [Gray]
Free White Persons - Females - 10 thru 14: 1
Free White Persons - Females - 15 thru 19: 2
Free White Persons - Females - 50 thru 59: 1 [Elizabeth]
Slaves - Males - Under 10: 1
Slaves - Males - 24 thru 35: 1
Free White Persons - Under 20: 3
Free White Persons - 20 thru 49: 1
Total Free White Persons: 6
Total Slaves: 2
Total - All Persons (Free White, Slaves, Free Colored): 8

1840
Gray Gillum
Weakley County, TN
Free White Persons - Males - 80 thru 89: 1 [Gray]
Free White Persons - Females - 30 thru 39: 1 [most likely Martha as she is not married until 1845]
Free White Persons - Females - 60 thru 69: 1 [Elizabeth]
Slaves - Males - 10 thru 23: 1
Total - All Persons (Free White, Free Colored, Slaves): 4
No. White Persons over 20 Who Cannot Read and Write: 3
Free White Persons - 20 thru 49: 1
Total Free White Persons: 3
Total Slaves: 1
Total All Persons - Free White, Free Colored, Slaves: 4



Tax Lists
Gilliam, Gray
District 6, 145 1/4 acres, valued $500 1 slave, valued $400
1842 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gilliam, Gray
Civil District 6, 145 1/4 acres, valued $500, 1 slave, valued $400
1843 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gillam, Gray
Civil District 6, 143 acres, valued $600, 1 slave, valued $400
1844 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gillam, Gray
Civil District 6, 144 acres, valued $500, 1 slave, valued $400
1845 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gillum, William
Civil District 6, 1 poll taken
1845 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gillam, Gray
Civil District 6, Listed as Gray Gillam heirs, 143 acres, valued $500, 1 slave, valued $400
1846 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gillum, Wm
Civil District 6, 1 poll taken
1846 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gillam, Elizabeth
Civil District 6, 143 acres, valued $500, 1 slave, valued $400
1847 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gillum, Wm
Civil District 6, 1 poll taken
1847 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gillam, Elizabeth
Civil District 6, 143 acres, valued $400, 1 slave, valued $400
1848 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gillam, William
Civil District 6, 1 poll taken
1848 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gillam, Elizabeth
Civil District 6, 143 acres, valued $490, 1 slave, valued $500
1849 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gillam, Wm
Civil District 6, 1 poll taken
1849 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book

Gilliam, Elizabeth
Civil District 6, 1 1/3 acres, valued $530, 1 slave, valued $500
1850 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book
[Abstraction shows 1 1/3 acres, this is likely a typo for 143 acres]

Gilliam, Wm
Civil District 6, 1 poll taken
1850 Weakley Co. TN Tax Book


Wills, etc.
19 Nov 1845
Will of Gray Gilliam

I, Gray Gillam of the county of Weakley and state of Tennessee do make and publish this my last will and testament hereby revoking all former wills by me at any time heretofore made.
And first I direct that my body be decently entered at the burying place on my plantation in a manner suitable to my condition in life and as to what worldly estate it hath pleased God to entrust me with I dispose of as follows:

First, I direct that all my debts and funeral expenses be paid as soon as possible after my decease out of any monies that I may died possessed of or may first come into the hands of my executor form any portion of my estate.

Secondly, I give unto my beloved wife Elizabeth Gillam all my lands and plantation tools, my gray mare and my negro girl Mary, all my stock of hogs and cattle and all my crop or corn fodder and oats and all my house hold and kitchen furniture in fact I give unto my beloved wife all my estate both real and personal to have and to hold during her natural life and at the death it is my will that my Executors sell all the property that she leaves to the highest bidder on a twelve month’s credit and the proceed thereof be equally divided between my several children to wit, Henry Gillam, Wm. Gillam, Nancy Rodney, Elizabeth Allen and Martha Trent, or their heirs.

I do hereby appoint my esteemed neighbor and friend Josiah R. Atkins executor of this my last will and testament.

Given under my hand and seal this the 19th day of November in the year of our Lord 1845.

Sig: Gray Gillam

Signed, sealed, published and acknowledged in the presence of us who have subscribed our names as witnesses in the presence of each other and in the presence of the testator.

Wit: William Baker, Evans Freeman

State of Tennessee
Weakley County
This day the foregoing last will and testament of Gray Gillam decd was duly proven in open court by the oaths of Wm Baker and Evans Freeman and ordered to be recorded and filed.
Given under my hand at office this 6th day of April 1846,
Tom H. Etheridge, Clerk.
Weakley County, TN, Will Book ____. Page 164-165



Sources