Alabama Pioneers HonoredBiographiesGenealogy Information

BIOGRAPHY: Abram Mordecai Revolutionary War soldier born October 24, 1755 – photographs

Click…/to see how to honor your ancestor as a Notable Alabama Pioneer


mordecai, abram historical marker




Montgomery and Tallapoosa County, Alabama

Abram Mordecai was born October 24, 1755, in Pennsylvania. He was a Jewish veteran of the Revolutionary War who settled in Indian country at an early day.

In 1783, he settled in Georgia where he became a successful trader among the Cusseta Indians. Abram was the first U. S. Citizen and probably the first Jewish citizen to settle in what would later become Montgomery County, Alabama.

He moved his family to in the Creek town of Econochaca (Holy Here he served as a go-between for the Creeks, trading furs, medicinal plants, and other items for European goods and utensils acquired in Pensacola, Savannah, and other cities along the southeastern seaboard. His trading house was two miles from Line Creek. (now in Chambers County).

“Mordecai married a Creek woman, believing (along with many others during this period) that Native Americans were descendants of one of the fabled Lost Tribes of Israel. In fact, many sources indicate that he initially attempted to speak with the Creeks in Hebrew, in the belief that their language was actually a dialect of his language. He became known among the Creeks as Muccose, or Little Chief.”abraham_modecai

“In the 1790s, the federal government initiated what was known as the “plan of civilization,” which aimed to encourage Native Americans to give up hunting and gathering and to adopt farming and manufacturing as their livelihood, with the ulterior motive of acquiring their vast hunting lands.

Toward that end, Benjamin Hawkins, administrator of the plan, enlisted Mordecai’s aid in 1802 to establish a cotton gin near the Creek towns along the Alabama River, in present-day Montgomery County, Alabama.”i

On the confluence of the Coosa and Tallapoosa, he installed a cotton gin manufactured by Lyons & Barnett, a firm owned by two Jewish families in Georgia. The gin was built along a trading path that would become part of the route of the Federal Road, near a racetrack owned by Creek leader Charles Weatherford (father of future Red Stick Creek leader William Weatherford).

“Mordecai lived among the Creeks and managed his gin and trading business in relative peace. In one notable incident, however, he angered a local chieftain by offering too much attention to a married woman in his town and apparently lost an ear in the resulting skirmish. He encountered more serious danger when he served with the Georgia Militia during the War of 1812.

Upon his return from that service, he was immediately involved in the U.S. effort in the Creek War in 1813, acting as a trail guide through Creek territory for Gen. John Floyd. Allied with the traditionalist faction of the Creek Nation, Mordecai aided the federal troops in tracking down members of the Red Stick faction who had participated in the attack on white settlers and allied Creeks at Fort Mims on August 30.

Grave marker of Abraham Mordecai in Dudleyville, Alabama ca. 1933 by Robert Graves Studio, Alexander City, Alabama (from Alabama State Archives)


In November 1813, Mordecai led Floyd and his men as well as a force of allied Creeks under William McIntosh to the town of Autossee, located near present-day Shorter, in Macon County. There, the Red Sticks were routed, losing at least 200 men, and the town was burned. Mordecai again guided Floyd’s forces when they set out the following January for Red Stick strongholds at Econochaca and other nearby towns. However, Floyd’s men suffered a major defeat in a surprise Creek attack at Calabee Creek near Autossee. Mordecai also may have been present at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend, when the Red Sticks suffered their final defeat.”ii

Until Indians burned his equipment, he ginned his own cotton and that of his Indian neighbors. His gin, the first in Alabama, was the forerunner of those that sprang up after the Territory was formed in 1817 and pioneers with “Alabama Fever” rushed to claim the fertile soil.

“After the war, Mordecai returned to his trading store and continued to serve as a cotton broker until 1836, when the Creeks were forcibly removed from their land by the federal government. As a white man, Mordecai remained behind. Some reports indicate that his wife and an unknown number of children removed west to Arkansas and then Oklahoma. Other reports state that his wife had already died by 1836 and his children had moved from the area. In either case, Mordecai moved to Dudleyville, Tallapoosa County, and opened a store there.

A popular storyteller in the town, Mordecai was interviewed by a reporter from the Columbus Enquirer in 1843 about his life among the Creeks and his experiences in the Creek War. Four years later, historian Albert Pickett conducted extensive interviews with Mordecai during his research for his opus History of Alabama: And Incidentally of Georgia and Mississippi from the Earliest Period. Pickett also published an interview with Mordecai in Montgomery’s Flag and Advertiser that same year.”iii

A.J. Pickett visited him in again in Dudleyville in 1847. During his long life, he was variously a negotiator between the Creeks and federal and state agents, a trader, a military guide and scout, and an early founder of the cotton industry around Montgomery.

“Mordecai lived simply in Dudleyville in his final years. Many locals stated that he either built his own coffin or had one commissioned several years before his death and ate his meals on it. Fiercely independent to the end, he died on August 25, 1850 (according to one contemporary newspaper account) and was buried in an unmarked grave in the Dudleyville Cemetery. On July 4, 1933, the Tohopeka Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution placed a granite marker on his grave in honor of his service during the American War of Independence.”iv



iEncyclopedia of Alabama

iiEncyclopedia of Alabama

iiiEncyclopedia of Alabama

ivEncyclopedia of Alabama

Did you know that all E-books can be downloaded immediately from – Read eBooks using the FREE Kindle Reading App on Most Devices?

You can also borrow many E-books from for Free it you have a Prime Membership.

Amazon has added over 1,000,000 songs that you can listen to for Free  with a Prime Membership along with the other benefits of Free shipping and 40,000 movies and TV shows.  It’s a great value, especially when you consider the Free shipping.

You can try a trial Membership by clicking the link below. Join Amazon Prime – Watch Over 40,000 Movies & TV Shows Anytime – Start Free Trial Now

ALABAMA FOOTPRINTS – Settlement: Lost & Forgotten Stories



  1. I love these Biographies, very interested in early Alabama.

    1. Thanks, Jackie. I’m glad you enjoy them.

  2. […] the first cotton gin, in the region now Alabama, was erected by Lyons and Bennett of Georgia, for Abram Mordecai, a Jew and an Indian trader, at Weatherford’s race track on the Alabama river. The materials […]

  3. […] of Mount Megs, where they carried on a small commerce. All these traders had Indian wives except Mordecai, whose faithful spouse was Indian considerably darkened with the blood of […]

  4. […] Indian in his feelings, and, when he had been in the nation five years, it was with difficulty that Mordecai could separate him from his Indian playmates, and carry him to Seagrove. That gentleman sent him to […]

  5. this is the slave trader who did business with the outlaw family in washington, montgomery, and emanuel counties in ga. this man was a slave trader who traded creek indians and mulatto slaves to the white settlers.

  6. […] Source: Biography: Abram Mordecai Revolutionary War soldier born 1755 | Alabama Pioneers […]

  7. […] Abraham Mordecai was an early settler who lived his last days in Dudleyville, Alabama in a log cabin.Below is a sketch of him written by Alabama Historian, Albert J. Pickett, in 1847. […]

  8. I am a little disoriented with places in this story. Line Creek flowed south from the Tallapoosa River into Macon Co., not Chambers Co. Autousee was on the north side of the Tallapoosa across from Shorter on the south side. Calebe Creek ran south through Macon Co. The Federal Road was south of the Tallapoosa and ran through Macon Co. and into Montgomery Co. until Millies Creek where it turned south. Autossee and Shorter were close but on opposite sides of the river.

  9. […] Abram Mordecai, an intelligent Jew, who dwelt fifty years in the Creek nation, set up the first commercial cotton gin at Coosada Bluff near Montgomery. He believed that the Indians were originally of his people, and he asserted that in their Green Corn Dances he had heard them often utter in grateful tones the word yavoyaha! yavoyuho! He was always informed by the Indians that this meant Jehovah, or the Great Spirit, and that they were then returning thanks for the abundant harvest with which they were blessed. […]