Jan. 25, 1912

Vol. XXI No. 38


John, Dan, Menassee, Margaret, Sarah, Mary, Betsy, Christie, and Kate Henderson were among the first settlers of Irwin County.

They came from North Carolina, and were of Scotch descent.

John married Rhoda Whitley, sister of old Wiley Whitley, of Lauren's County. Their children were: John Jackson, Robert, Dan and Thoda.

They settled at Willacoochee Creek close to where James Sutton now lives, about 6 miles east of Ocilla.

John Jackson (son of John)was born August 27th, 1827 in the second district. He taught school at the site where William F. Paulk's residence is now located. Among his pupils were Thomas Young, of Coffee County, recently deceased, and other prominent men.

He married Susie Whiddon, daughter of old Lott, in 1859. They settled on the place now occupied by Wm. F. Paulk, where they remained several years, then moved to Sycamore, on the place settled by old Lott Whiddon, where John Jackson died in 1920. He was engaged in the mercantile business and general farming. He served as a Captain in the Confederate army in the war between the states; was a member of the Methodist church and a Mason of high rank.

The children of John Jackson and Susie were: Jim, George, Judy, Jane, Duncan, Sarah, Susie and Unie.

Jim, son of John Jackson, represents Turner county in the Legislature and is a successful merchant and banker. He married Babe Young and their children were Abe and Albert.

Abe was killed at Sycamore by Jehu Smith.

Albert married Miss Adams, daughter of Homer.

George, son of John Jackson, married Josie Simms. He died, leaving a widow and one child, Carl, who died also.

Duncan, son of John Jackson, died.

Judy, daughter of John Jackson, married Howard Story.

Susie, daughter of John Jackson, married Alex Story. Their son, John Story, is an attorney at law at Ashburn.

Jane married Abraham Clements, he is dead.

Sarah married James I. Clements.

Unie, daughter of John Jackson, married Hon. Thomas B. Young, father of J.H. Young.

Robert, son of old John Henderson, married Lizzie Paulk. She died in Texas, leaving a son, William.

Their daughter, Narcissa, married Malcolm McMillan of Brookfield.

Robert spent several years in Texas, and after his return to Georgia he married Mrs. Harrell, a sister of I.P., I.W. and I.S. Bowen.

Dan, son of old John Henderson, married Becky Tucker. Their children were: Grace, Mary, Millie, John, Newton and Jasper.

Grace married Joe Sutton; he died; no children. She next married Peter Solomon.

Mary married Joe Swilley; their children were: Blansett, Becky, Annie and Isham.

Millie married Boy Purvis; he died. She then married Jim Brogdon; their children were Unie and Newton.

John, son of Dan, married Sibbie Gray. Their children : Leacy, Duncan, Dan, John, Thoda, Albert, Jim, Ashley, Menassee and Annie.

Duncan married Winnie Edge.

John married Miss Clements.

Leacy married Henry Jernigan.

Jim married Miss Gay.

Thoda died; the rest are single.

Newton, son of Dan, married Holland Cobb. Their children are: Joe, Ida, John, Mattie and Albert.

Joe married Sarah McMillan, daughter of Tom.

Ida married John McMillan, son of Red Malcolm.

Jasper, son of Dan, died.

Thoda, daughter of John Henderson, married Jacob Paulk; he died. ( In the Paulk Group).

Dan, brother of John, Menassee and the other Hendersons, was one of the first jurors of Irwin county, serving as a petit juror in the first court held in Irwin.

He married Fareby Whiddon, daughter of old Lott Whiddon,who accompanied her parents from Emanuel county when the Indians had possession of this county and the beasts of the forest roamed at will. When her parents lived within a mile of Irwinville, her mother, Mrs. Judea Whiddon, called upon a sick child at the home of Mr. Jim Wallace, where Irwinville now stands. On her return, as she was crossing a branch on a foot-log, she felt the jarring of the log, caused by the spring of an approaching panther. But the animal scented other prey and did not molest them, the mother and child escaping without any trouble except the excitement and anxiety of the mother.

Dan Henderson and wife settled at the place now occupied by Need Purvis, near the Alapaha river, where Menassee was born. He then moved west of Sycamore, across Little River, and settled within one mile of Pleasant Hill church. It was then a log house, which was utilized for school and church purposes. The congregation afterwards built a new meeting-house East of Sycamore, where it now stands, on the east side of Little River, several miles away from the old location.

At the new home of the Henderson's, several children first saw the light of day. Among them were: William, John, Green, Dan, Jim, Robert, Albert, Mary, Margaret and Martha.

They remained on the place until the older children were grown and some of them married, when they took up their abode at Isabella for several years, where the younger children received their education and where Dan represented Worth county in the legislature. They returned to their old home near Pleasant Hill church site. When old Dan's health began to fail, and they decided to cross both Little and Alapaha rivers, to a place where Dan had purchased land, where Ocilla now stands.

Ocilla was named after an Indian chief, Ocilla, who was buried there. Dan Henderson was taken sick at the home of Wiley Whitley, his son-in law, while the family were moving to Ocilla, and died. His wife died at Ocilla, after raising a large family of children and grand-children.

The oldest of Dan and Fareby was Menassee, or "Black Nas." He represented Irwin county in both branches of the Legislature; was County Commissioner and active in several official capacities in the county. He served as Captain of a Company during the War Between the States, with honor and credit. He married Mary Young, daughter of Rev. Jacob Young; she died. He then married Mrs. Hobbs, of Ocilla, shortly before his departure from this world. He lived to see the new courthouse built at Ocilla. He died at his old homestead near Ocilla, and was buried at Brushy Creek, where his name was enrolled upon the membership of the church whose clerk he had been for years. He was one of the ablest, brightest and most enlightened men of his day, serving his state, county and country.

William, son of Dan Henderson, was Justice of the Peace at Ocilla; served as member of the legislature and was clerk of that body. He was born near Little river and was nursed by Aunt Van Paulk when a child. He stated that Aunt Van was a very lively and pretty woman. He married Salanda Cox. She died near Ocilla, leaving:

Dan, who married Thoney Dorminy.

Mattie, who married Dr. John Luke.

Alice, who married Tommie McMillan, son of John.

Cora, who married Tom Ellerby.

Jim, who married Pearl Auvil, of West Virginia.

Albert died; John single.

William next married Berta Swan of Jefferson county. Their children: Powell died; Fareby and several smaller ones.

Green, son of Dan, married Martha Vickers, daughter of Rev. John Vickers. She died at Moultrie. He represented Colquitt county in the legislature.

John, son of Dan, went to Florida and lives in Jacksonville.

Jim, son of Dan, became on the most popular public-spirited men of South Georgia; a railroad promoter, saw mill and turpentine operator, a leader in politics and a member of the legislature in both branches.

He married Mattie Paulk, daughter of Reason. Their Children were: Reason, who married Annie Brown, of Little Rock, Ark.; Augusta, who married George Dickson; Waldo, Ellen, Nassy and DuBignon, single.

Dan, son of Dan, married Becky Young, daughter of Rev. Jacob Young. They reside at the old John B. Dorminy place, where Rev. Young raised his family, the birth-place of his wife. Their children were:

Alder, who married W. Lennon.

Maggie, who married Lucius Tucker.

John, who married Beulag Paulk.

Eugene, who married E.D. Lawhorn.

Lenox, not married. Unie, died at the age of 15. She dropped dead of heart-failure at school.

Robert, son of Dan, married Margaret Young, daughter of Rev. Jacob Young. He was Chief of Police of Ocilla. Their children: Annie married Col. J. Quincy; D.J. married Nellie Dorminey. He is cashier of the Citizens Band of Ocilla. Nas Tom married Reta McMillan.

Albert, youngest son of Dan, married Annie Mayo. He studied law and died in Albany, leaving a son, Albert.

Kate, daughter of Dan, married Ben Hobby. He died. She next married Judge Wiley Whitley. She died, leaving a large family.

Margaret married George Whitley. He died; she then married E.J. Young.

Martha married John Whitley. he died; she then married Luke Harper.

Menassee, or Nas Henderson, the elder, brother of the oldest of the Hendersons, married Mary Whiddon, daughter of old Lott. He died after the war, at Peckville. He left a large estate; no children. He was the first ordinary of Irwin county, also served as sheriff. He hung the first negro that was legally executed in Irwin county.

He was one of the delegates to the State Convention that endorsed the resolution for the secession of the State of Georgia. Thomas Young was the other delegate, he voted against the succession, as instructed by a majority of the voters of Irwin county who were not in favor of secession. There were few slaves in Irwin and the people decided to remain neutral. These facts were stated by the late Captain John Jackson Henderson, and others familiar with the situation. In the heat of argument and intense excitement, enthusiasm and patriotism, Nas Henderson voted with the rest for succession. Not withstanding, the people of Irwin county were not in favor of succession, when the state rendered its decision. Irwin mustered out its men and sent as able and capable a representation to the front as any county in the state, who remained there during the entire struggle, with credit and honor. Such men as Capt. Tom Wilcox, Judy Wiley Whitley, Bill Branch, Jake McCook, Dan Purvis and a host of others who became leading spirits in the public affairs of the county.

Almost all the old heroes have passed away, but he memories of the old pioneers who forged their way to the front will not be obliterated from history's pages. The men who sacrificed life, homes and happiness to perform their duty to their country, shall never be forgotten.

Betsy, sister of John, Manassee and Dan Henderson, married Micajah Tucker, son of Rev. Richard Tucker. The other sisters:

Sarah, married Ben Griffin.

Mary, married John McInnis, father of Dan and Jim McInnis, near Tifton.

Margaret married Jasper Nobles.

Nancy married Tom Paulk, son of Micajah I.

Chrissie married Godfrey Purvis.

Kate married Jacob Paulk, son of old Micajah.

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Please take note that this information came from long ago and has not been corrected for accuracy. Many of these sketches have names transposed or just plain wrong information so use this as a starting point, not the final end to your research. THIS IS NOT AN ORIGINAL DOCUMENT. It is a summary of the genealogical findings of one man, Gus Adams, which were unsubstantiated and should be used as such. You can find much more info from the Irwin County pages of my website

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Follow the link to get a form to print out. Price is $75 which includes tax and shipping. This is a great bargain for the material covered in this fantastic volume that will be treasured in your family for years.(If the link to the book order page doesn't work, just email me and I'll get you the info).

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