Days Gone By - stories from the past

Have you ever attended the fall festival in Jackson, Alabama?

Jackson, Clarke County, Alabama

The town of Jackson in Clarke County, Alabama is holds an annual fall festival. See Fall Festival for more information

Home of first Agricultural College in the State of Alabama

On the eastern bank of the Tombigbee River just north of the mouth of Bassetts Creek in Clarke County, Alabama, is located the town of Jackson. The population in 1870—1,360; 1880—1,012; 1900—1,039; 1910—1,379; 1915—2,500 was 5,228 at the 2010 census. Jackson was incorporated by the Mississippi Territorial Legislature, November 27, 1816. The first Agricultural College in the State of Alabama was established where Jackson Middle School is now located

The settlement of Jackson was first called Republicville, and as early as 1813, it had attained considerable importance. In 1816 the town’s name was changed to Pine Level, and later to the present name, in honor of Gen. Jackson. Jackson is one of the oldest towns in Clarke County with a history that dates back to the French and Spanish times.

map-shows-fort-claiborne-upper-right-alabama-department-of-archives-and-historyOld Map shows Jackson (middle left) in Clarke County, Alabama

In 1813 Gen. Claiborne’s army camped at the town while en route to the scene of the Battle of the Holy Ground. Capt. Sam Dale, with a scouting party, scoured the swamps of Bassetts Creek, clearing out the lurking Indians, and thus securing safety for the settlers. Frank Stringer was the first settler. John Chapman came in 1810. William Walker set up a mill on Bassetts Creek in 1811, and David Taylor built a flouring mill in 1812. Reuben Saffold arrived in 1813, and took part in the Burnt Corn expedition.

The town quickly grew to a population of 1500 in 1816. Traders came from 100 miles to sell their goods. The Pine Level Land Company owned much of the town and sold lots for public use. The original plat reveals their plans for a large city. Lots included a place for a public square, a market place, three church lots, a school, and a cemetery.

A large tannery was early established and supplied saddles, harness, shoes, and other .leather articles needed by the pioneers. Sailing vessels frequently came from Mobile, and as many as 20 were sometimes at anchor in the river.

Immigrants came from everywhere

Immigrants to the town included Pennsylvania Germans, French and Quakers. L. Hatch was said to have had the “handsomest residence in Jackson.” Captain Wainwright, a steamboat captain, bought the house at a later date and the house is still standing.

Early families included the names of: White, Stringer, Dubose, Daffin, Parker, Taylor, Chapman, Walker, Bradley, Joiner, and Gill.

“River traffic was essential to this part of the country. Not only for travel but for the delivery of supplies. The Jackson Ferry began operation in the later part of the 18th century and was used until a bridge was built in the late 1920’s. General Jackson and Claiborne used this ferry to transport their armies. The ferry was owned by the Stringers and later by David Taylor. Later, Isham Kimbell and his heirs operated the ferry until the bridge was built.”1


See all books and novels by Donna R. Causey

WHERE DO I START? Hints and Tips for Beginning Genealogists with On-line resources includes 81 questions to ask your parents and grandparents before it’s too late. 

About Donna R Causey

Donna R. Causey, resident of Alabama, was a teacher in the public school system for twenty years. When she retired, Donna found time to focus on her lifetime passion for historical writing. She developed the websites www.alabamapioneers and All her books can be purchased at and Barnes & Noble. She has authored numerous genealogy books. RIBBON OF LOVE: A Novel Of Colonial America (TAPESTRY OF LOVE) is her first novel in the Tapestry of Love about her family where she uses actual characters, facts, dates and places to create a story about life as it might have happened in colonial Virginia. Faith and Courage: Tapestry of Love (Volume 2) is the second book and the third FreeHearts: A Novel of Colonial America (Book 3 in the Tapestry of Love Series) Discordance: The Cottinghams (Volume 1) is the continuation of the story. . For a complete list of books, visit Donna R Causey

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