BIOGRAPHY and GENEALOGY
(b. ca. 1792 – d. 1864)
(from Franklin, Tennessee to Lawrence Co., Alabama)
The father of Judge William C. Graham of the county court of Lawrence County, Alabama was named John Graham. He served in the War of 1812 and received bounty land for his service.
James Edmonds Saunders stated the following about him in his book Early Settlers of Alabama written in 1899.
“He lived near Franklin town, in Tennessee, upon a small farm. I knew him there very well sixty years ago. The leisure part of the year he occupied in hauling tobacco to Nashville, and goods back to Franklin. The two places were eighteen miles apart as the road then ran. It was before the construction of turnpikes and railroads.
At some seasons of the year, one living now can not conceive of the miry condition of the roads. Graham used to encounter them and with his Scotch tenacity of purpose, always made his trips in good time- and I have heard my father (who was a merchant) say the goods were uniformly delivered according to manifest.
Graham was very much respected, and married Miss Ladio (Lydia Perry) Cherry, who belonged to a good family. They moved into this county (Lawrence County) in 1816. He settled first on the east side of Big Nance, and, after the land sales, moved to the west side, and occupied the place he had just purchased, and on which his son Thomas now lives. They planted the first orchard I had any knowledge of; the boys all worked on the farm, obtained a good English education, and it was one of the happiest families in our county.
The old people, however, in the course of time, had some heart-rending sorrows. In the first place their oldest son, Tidant L., who was a house carpenter, was stricken by lightning and killed. Then, after an interval of many years, the war between the States broke out. Their two youngest sons had just grown up. John C., the elder, had gone to Texas, and volunteered in one of her regiments; while Noel C., the younger, entered the Ninth Alabama, the first regiment to which Lawrence contributed volunteers.
Nearly three years of hard service transpired, and I know not if these two brothers ever happened to meet during all that time. But when the memorable battle of Gettysburg was fought, both these regiments were in that gallant but disastrous charge under Longstreet, on the 3rd of July, 1863, and both of these brave brothers fell on the same field. In their once happy home they had, when boys, knelt for prayers at the knee of the same pious Methodist mother, and slept in the same bed. Then, after years of separation, they had met at the same carnival of blood, and sank, together, into a soldier’s grave.
The Ninth Alabama had passed through many a hard fought field ere-then. It had been at Williamsburg, the battles before Richmond, the Second Manassas, at Harper’s Ferry, at Sharpsburg, at Fredericksburg, at Salem Church, and its members had become veterans. By what route the Texas regiment had reached that fatal field I know not, but I am satisfied it was a “fiery” one, for it is the lot of gallant soldiers always to occupy posts of danger.
Before the expiration of that year (1864) John Graham was in his grave. His good wife still lived at the advanced age of 83 years. (ca. 1880’s) Instead of her being a burden to her children, she was straight, active, industrious, and had a mind still clear as it ever was. ……”
Willam C. Graham, when grown up, learned the tanner’s trade under Mr. McLung, who owned the tanyard at Whitesburg, which Graham afterward purchased. During all the time he owned it he devoted every spare moment to study, rising in sinter long before day. He commenced the practice of the law, and it was not long before he was elected judge. Then he was elected to the House of Representatives.
After this, he returned to the practice of law. The commencement of his career was full of promise and his advancement rapid. But he did not continue to advance. He met an enemy in his path and succumbed to him; that same enemy which has destroyed so many of our professional men in the South.”
John Graham and wife had eleven children.
- William C. Graham – became a tanner
- Noel C. Graham – died in Civil War
- John C. Graham – went to Texas – died in Civil War
- Tidant L. Graham – struck by lightening
- Malvina Graham, who married Joseph Love; (died ca. 1880’s) and she still lived a widow
- Malcom S. Graham, who married first Eliza, daughter of Jerry Holland, and secondly Mrs. Pittman. He died in 1876.
- Thomas J. Graham., who married another daughter of Jerry Holland;
- James Graham went to Texas and there died:
- Mary Graham, who married Rev. L. B. Sanderson;
- Sarah Graham, who married Thomas Holland son of Jerry Holland
- Louisiana Graham, who married J. V. Love; she was dead by 1880 and he was living ( in 1880)
1.War of 1812 Pension Application Files Index, 1812-1815 – pension number 1 -WO 21064
Pension Number 2 – WC 26993 Bounty Land Number #1 – 81089 40-50 Bounty Land # 2 – 73902 120 55
2.1850, 1860 District 7, Lawrence County, Alabama US census
3.1820 Warren, Tennessee US. Census
4.Early Settlers of Alabama By James Edmonds Saunders 1880