Alabama Pioneers Honored

BIOGRAPHY: Jehu Wellington Vandiver (1850 – 1934)



September 17, 1850 – August 16, 1934

Talladega, Alabama

Lawyer, editor, lecturer, Mr. Vandiver was born September 17, 1850, at Alexandria, Calhoun County; son of John Harrington and Mary Eliza Emma (McAfee) Vandiver, the former who was born in Spartanburg District, S. C., practiced medicine, was selected as electoral messenger for the state of South Carolina in 1848, engaged- in the drug business, removed from South Carolina to Alabama, settled in Alexandria, and in 1857 settled in Talladega; grandson of John and Winnie (Cannon) Vandiver, who lived in Spartanburg District, S. C., and of Judge Green Taliaferro and Charlsie Ann (Hall) McAfee; great-grandson of John and Elizabeth (Llemastre) Vandiver, who removed from Pennsylvania to Surrey County, N. C., and in 1791, to Spartanburg, S. C.; great-great-grandson of John Vandiver; Great-great-great-grandson of William Van Der Wer, who was the ancestor of the South Carolina and West Virginia Vandivers.

The immediate ancestors of the Van der Veers, or Van de Wers, the name later being changed to Vandiver, came from the north Netherlands, and reached New York in 1653. Some settled in the Mohawk valley, others went down the Delaware, and in 1655 Jacob Van de Wer, the progenitor of the family in America, served as sergeant in the army of Peter Stuyvesant, and assisted in the capture of Fort Christina, Wilmington, Del.

Adam Vandiver, of Tallulah Falls, Ga., was a veteran of the Indian battle of Talladega. Mr. Vandiver received his education in the schools of Talladega, was a member of a boy company named the Invincibles in 1863, and served as water carrier for a short time; studied law in the offices of Bradford and Martin of Talladega, in 1872 was admitted to the bar, and in 1868 was clerk of the senate judiciary committee. In 1873 he removed to Galesville, Tex., where he edited the “Sun”; returned to Alabama, and was county solicitor for St. Clair County, 1875; was elected circuit solicitor of the tenth circuit, 1876; was register in chancery for Talladega County, 1886- 1910; was president of the Alabama chautauqua, 1889-1910. He returned to Texas, where he founded “The Gadsden News,” which was afterwards consolidated with “The Times,” under the name of the “TimesNews,” where he remained from 1881-82; was mayor of Talladega, 1901- 07; mayor and president of the city board of Commissioners, 1913-20, He has written many articles for the “Montgomery Advertiser,” and for the “Age Herald,” notable among which are “Sunshine in Alabama,” and “Yarns of the Court House Gang/’ He has also written short articles for Tuck,” “Judge,” “Life,” and the “Black Cat” magazine. He is a Democrat, Methodist, and Knight of Pythias.

Married: June 4, 1878, at Gadsden, to Florence Alveretta Cunningham, daughter of Joseph L. and Elizabeth (Wharton) Cunningham, who lived at Gadsden, the former who was state senator from Cherokee, St. Clair, and Etowah Counties, in 1878-79, was a lawyer, served first as captain and later as major on the staff of Gen. Tracey, Wheeler’s cavalry, C. S. Army, the latter who was a member of the Wharton family of Etowah County.

Children: 1. Almuth Cunningham, who graduated B.S., in 1898, from the Alabama Polytechnic Institute, and B. L., from the New York University, 1904, served as district attorney under William Travers Jerome, 1906-08, was law partner of Gov. Whitman of New York, 1909-10, and of U. S. Senator O’Gorman, of New York, 1914-19, was judge advocate under Gen. Crowder with rank of major, 1918-19, m. Eleanor Williams, residence, New York, N. Y.; 2. Annabel, m. Howard L. Smith, who is assistant attorney for the “Katy” railroad system, for the state of Oklahoma, residence, Muskogee, Okla.; 3. William Reeves, manager of the storage warehouse, New York, m. Elaine Casey, resident, New York. Residence: Talladega


Biographies of Notable and Not-so-Notable: Alabama Pioneers

Revised with direct links to many sources and burial sites! This book includes the genealogy of and biography of William Barrett Travis of Alamo fame and Elisha Cottingham, the Alabama descendants from the Tapestry of Love, Historical Fiction Series by Donna R. Causey. The biographies of Alabama pioneers included in this book include: REV. JOHN WESLEY STARR (1806-1870) ELBERT SOULE STARR (1845-1908) JOHN WESLEY STARR, JR. (1830-1853) RICHARD ELLIS (1781 – 1846) JOHN WHITE, ESQ., (1778 – 1842) JOSEPH GLOVER BALDWIN (1815 – 1864) COL. JONATHAN NEWTON SMITH (1814 -1885) RICHARD HOPKINS PRATT (1827 – 1908) HOPKINS PRATT (1791-1841) MARY DICKERSON PRATT (1800-1882) ABSALOM PRATT (1793-1845) RICHARD PRATT (1764-1822) REBECCA BEAVERS PRATT (1770-1847) EDMOND PIERCE ANDERSON (1800-1827) DAVID W. HUNTER (b. ca. 1800) AMBROSE HUNTER (b. ca. 1800) JOHN ALEXANDER GRUGETT (ca. 1774 – ca. 1826) ISAAC NEWTON LANGSTON (1775 -1850) OBEDIAH LANGSTON (1801 – 1888) DORANTON PATTON NEWTON LANGSTON (1812 – 1873) ELISHA COTTINGHAM, SR.. (b. ca. 1755 – 1820) ELISHA COTTINGHAM, JR. (1793 -1870) JOHN C. D. MAT TROTT (1809 – 1883) COL. WILLIAM BARRETT TRAVIS (Hero of the Alamo) (1809-1836) HENLEY GRAHAM SNEAD (1814 – 1906) WINTHROP SARGEANT (1755 – 1820) TOD ROBINSON, SR. (1776 – 1838) TOD ROBINSON, JR. (1812 – 1870) WILLIAM RAIFORD PICKETT (1777 – 1850) COLONEL ALBERT J. PICKETT (1810 -1858) BRIG. GENERAL WILLIAM FLANK PERRY (1823 -1901) GEORGE FOOTE (1784 – 1825) PHILLIP A. FOOTE (1793 – 1831) JONATHAN BURFORD (1793 – 1849) includes many slave names DANIEL WASHINGTON BURFORD (1782 – 1847) JOHN GALLAGHER (ca. 1796 – 1839) DAVID JOHNSON GOODLETT (1804 – 1878) JUDGE HENRY ANDERSON MCGHEE (1808 – 1901)


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