Alabama Pioneers HonoredBiographiesGenealogy Information

BIOGRAPHY: John Alexander Grugett born ca. 1774

This biography is also in the books Biographies of Notable and Not-So-Notable: Alabama Pioneers (Volume 1) and FIRST FAMILIES OF LAWRENCE COUNTY, ALABAMA VOLUME I



(ca. 1774 – ca. 1826)

Lawrence County, Alabama

Major John Alexander Grugett was a contractor and completed the largest log hotel in Moulton, Lawrence County, Alabama. It was on the east side of the street leading south from the southwest corner of the square and was two stories high with four rooms on each floor and wide halls. When he died, his widow had nothing but the house and turned it into a hotel. Many lawyers from other counties stayed in her hotel when visiting Moulton.

Edmond Saunders relates the following about the family:

“Mrs. Grugett (Jane Adams) had a heavy burden upon her in the support of her family, and keeping her three daughters in the social position formerly held by her family. The terms of court, in which, only, she had any income, were so short and the vacations( in which she made nothing) were so long that the good lady was sometimes greatly depressed. But she was a faithful Presbyterian, and a devoted mother, and she heroically maintained the conflict with poverty. She “made every edge cut,” and once when she moved her woodpile, which had been for years in the street, she utilized the rich mould by extending her fence around it, and making a fine crop of onions.”

Their known children were:

  1. Benjamin F. Grugett – “Her son, Ben Grugett, when he got large enough to water the lawyer’s horses, drew to his aid nearly all the boys in town. Ben mounted his horse bare-back, led the boys all dressed in white pants which “bore Ben’s signet”and cantor south for more than half a mile to the nearest water. He grew to be a stout boy and on long vacations, he would go out to the woods with an ox-cart and cut and bring home a supply of wood. Ben always rode the steer “bare-back” and seemed to be invulnerable as he did all the rough work of the family. He grew to over six feet but during all the years of drudgery and labor for others, his education had been neglected and he went off to Mississippi to engage in manual labor for support after his mother died. “When war was declared with Mexico, my nephew, the late Capt. Joel T. Parrish, of the Jeff. Davis rifles, wrote informing me of his departure. I answered at once, advising him in forming his mess to include some who were inured to hard labor. On his return from Mexico he informed me that he invited Ben Grugett into his mess, and owed his life to that fact, for he fell sick and he nursed him like a brother- and more ever made a splendid soldier.”
  2. Amanda Malonia Grugett – “The eldest daughter of Mrs. Grugett, Amanda Malonia Grugett, married Parker Alexander on Feb. 19, 1828. He had a plantation on the Tombigbee.”
  3. Margaret Ann Grugett “Another daughter Margaret Grugett (b. 1812-d. 1832) married Ambrose Hunter.” on Feb. 19, 1828 in Lawrence Co., Alabama.
  4. Iantha Jane Grugett (b. Nov. 28, 1811 Edmondson, KY) “was tall and slender and so delicate that her friends advised her not to marry but she did not follow their advice and married on January 7, 1829, James Matthew Minnis, a merchant in Moulton, who had a very good living. They had ten children. James M. Minnis and Iantha moved to Aberdeen, Mississippi.”
  5. Elizabeth A. Grugett
  6. John Alexander Grugett, Jr.
  7. Sally Grugett
  8. Andrew Jackson Grugett


  1. EARLY SETTLERS OF ALABAMA NOTES AND GENEALOGIES by Col. JAMES EDMONDS SAUNDERS LAWRENCE COUNTY, ALA VOL I by his granddaughter ELIZABETH SAUNDERS BLAIR STUBBS NEW ORLEANS: L Graham & Son Ltd., Printers, 207-211 Baronne St. 1899 Reprinted by Willo Publishing Company Tuscaloosa, Alabama 1961
  3. Marriage licences of Margaret Ann, Amanda Malonia from

This biography is included in the book Biographies of Notable and Not-so-Notable  Alabama Pioneers Volume I

and in

First Families of Lawrence County, Alabama Volume I

Biographies of Notable and Not-so-Notable  Alabama Pioneers Volume I

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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