Tennessee Supreme Court Case Files
Tennessee State Library and Archives
White County, TN - 1855
About 50 Pages
This court case is a land ownership dispute case between James Bartlett and Lucy Watson. The case proceeds to trace the legal ownership of a tract of land in White County near Falling Water or Goose Creek. It includes some relationship details, three will transcriptions, and several land grants.
Hunter, Watson, Hudgens
White County, Tennessee
- ___ Hudgens married Patty Hunter.
- William Hunter died about 1845.
- William Hunter's children are Polly Hudgens wife of James Hudgens, Dudley Hunter, James Hunter (who had
- been legalized and made his lawful heir).
- Sarah Hunter is the widow of William Hunter.
- Negro Slaves owned by William Hunter: Bob age about 55 or 60 years; Allen aged about 26 or 27 years; Alex
- aged about 16 years; Narcissa aged about 17 years and her infant child.
- Benjamin Watson is the son of Lucy Watson.
- Triphena Hyder states that William Hunter died about 1845.
- John Watson is the son of John Watson. The father John Watson died 22 August 1851 [or 1857].
- On 22 December 1853, son John Watson was living on the farm of his father.
- Lucy Watson was the wife of John Watson.
- John Watson owned Negroes Clabourn and his wife Iam which he bequeathed to Lucy Watson in his will. He bequeathed Negro Girl Mariana aged about 11 to his daughter Keziah M. Murphy.
- John Watson's daughters are Matilda Hodges, Delila Hodges, and Mary Allen.
- John Watson son: John S. Watson, Benjamin R. H. Watson, Thomas T. Watson, Keziah M. Murphy.
- John Watson appointed son Thomas T. Watson, Benjamin Watson and Levi L. Murphy as Executors. Thomas T. Watson is appointed guardian for Delila Hodges. Benjamin R. H. Watson is appointed Guardian for Malinda Hodges. Levi L. Murphy is Guardian for Mary Allen. Dated. 3 February 1851.
- Mary Hudgens is the wife of James Hudgens.
- James Hudgens children are William, Shelby, Hampton, John, Crockett & Joseph Hudgens, Catherine Lowry,
- James Hudgens will names wife Mary Hudgens as Executrix.
- Grant No. 2647 - State of TN to Joseph Hunter. Dated 25 Oct 1810.
- Grant No. 7405 - State of TN to John Watson. Dated 19 Oct 1839.
- Grant No. 6678 - State of TN to William Hunter. Dated 16 Feb 1839.
- Will of William Hunter - Children named Polly Hudgens wife of James Hudgens, Dudley Hunter, James Hunter
- who had been legalized and made his lawful heir,. Wife: Sarah Hunter. Dated: 6 June 1844.
- Will of James Hudgens written 23 March 1841. Wife Mary Hudgens. Children: William, Shelby, Hampton, John, Crockett & Joseph Hudgins. Daughter: Catherine Lowery. Executors: Mary Hudgins, John & Hampton Hudgins.
- Will of John Watson written 3 February 1851. Wife Lucy Watson. To Lucy: two Negros Clabourn and his wife Jam. Daughters: Matilda Hodges, Delila Hodges, unfortunate daughter Mary Allen, Keziah M. Murphy. Sons: John S. Watson, Benjamin H. R. Watson, Thomas T. Watson. Executors: Thomas T. Watson and Benjamin Watson, Levi Murphee. Thomas T. Watson Guardian for Delilah Hodges. Benjamin R. H. Watson Guardian for Malinda Hodges. Levi L. Murphee Guardian for daughter Mary Allen.
- Deed - Joseph Hunter to William Hunter - 4 Oct 1837.
- Deed - Nathan Bartlett to William Hunter - 28 Dec 1814.
- Deed - John Henry to James Bartlett - 5 May 1850.
- Deed - William Bartlett to John Watson - 4 September 1838.
- Deed - John Rodgers to William Hunter - 21 Sep 1833.
- Isaac Buck, Surveyor
- Triphena Hyder
- 25 Oct 1810: Land Grant No. 2647 - State to Joseph Hunter.
- 28 Dec 1814: Nathan Bartlett deeded land to William Hunter.
- 21 Sep 1833: Deed from John Rodgers to William Hunter.
- 04 Oct 1837: Deed from Joseph Hunter to William Hunter.
- 04 Sep 1838: Deed from William Bartlett to John Watson.
- 16 Feb 1839: Land Grant No. 6678 to William Hunter.
- 19 Oct 1839: Land Grant No. 7405 to John Watson.
- 23 Mar 1841: Will of James Hudgens written.
- 06 Jun 1844: Will of William Hunter written.
- 02 Feb 1846: Circuit Court in White County met. Dudley Hunter, James Hunter, James Hudgens & his wife Patty, formerly Patty Hunter, James Hunter an infant under the age of 21, John Henry Expartee Petition, to sell land and Negroes.
- 05 Feb 1846: Decree from the Circuit Court Case.
- 13 Jun 1846: Decree of the Circuit Court. Sold Negro Boy Alexander to Dudley Hunter for $600. Sold Negro Girl Narcissa and child to Dudley Hunter for $700. Sold Allen to Daniel Smith for $641.Sold Old Man Robert to Hiram Brown for $151. Sold several tracts of Land to James Hudgins, and Charles and John Hunter.
- 17 Oct 1846: Honorable Abraham Caruthers makes an amendment to the Decree.
- 06 Sep 1847: Will of James Hudgens was proven in open court. **Hampton Hudgens, John Hudgens, Dudley Hunter, Mark Lowry, John Young, and John Brown post bond to be Exectuors of the Will of James Hudgens. Letters of Testimentary given to them.
- 05 May 1850: Deed from John Henry to James Bartlett.
- 03 Feb 1851: Will of John Watson written.
- 01 Mar 1853: James Bartlett vs Benjamin Watson and Lucy Watson } Ejectment.
- 20 Dec 1853: James Bartlett owned a parcel of land in White County. By deed from Joseph Hunter to Wm Bartlett ... Containing 36 acres. Defendants Benjamin Watson and Lucy Watson unlawfully gained possession of land.
- 22 Dec 1853: Bond for Benjamin Watson & lucy Watson.
- 02 Jan 1854: Summons to answer cause issued to Benjamin Watson.
- 03 Jan 1854: Lucy Watson posts bond. Attest: Joseph Brown, Clerk. T. B. Murray.
- 30 Jan 1854: Summons to answer cause issued to Lucy Watson.
- 06 Feb 1854: T. B. Murray presented his brief in the Circuit Court of White County.
- 30 May 1854: Bond was posted.
- 30 May 1854: Presented to the court. Cause was continued.
- 05 Jun 1854: Judge John Goodall continued the case.
- 08 Jun 1854: Presented to the court. Cause was continued.
- 25 Sep 1854: Continued to next term.
- Sep Term 1854: John Henry, attorney; Complainants John Kerly, John Watson, Benjamin Watson & Lucy Watson were the owners of a tract of land on 20 Dec 1854. ... Beginning on a corner of a 184 acre survey part of which is held by the deed from Joseph Hunter to William Bartlett. On about 20 Dec 1854, Defendants Benjamin Watson, Lucy Watson, John Watson and John Kerly entered the premises and unlawfully took possession ... On the 20 Dec last John Hudgins and Hampton Hudgins were owner in fee simple of the following land ... Beginning on a corner of a 184 acre survey of which is now held by Deed from Joseph Hunter to William Bartlett .... Murray & Brien attorneys for Plaintiff
- 05 Oct 1854: Jury selected: Foster A. Pirtles, Robert Wilson, Simeon Ingalls, Avery Green, Elijah W. Denson, Richard Brady, Joseph W. Clark, John Parker, Calvin B. Crook, Sandy Hicky, Washington Webb, and Solomon Duncan.
- 05 Oct 1854: Case was heard before the Court.
- 06 Oct 1854: The jury retired to consider the verdict. When they returned, they stated that they could not agree on a verdict.
- 06 Oct 1854: Amended the Bill to include John Henry, John Hudgins and Hampton Hudgins.
- 06 Oct 1854: Bond entered for James Bartlett & George G. Dibrell.
- 30 Jan 1855: Court met. Defendants attorneys wanted to strike John S. Watson & John Kerley from the bill.
- 02 Feb 1855: Trial began. Judge John L. Goodall presiding. Jury: Enoch S. Upchurch, Mathew H. Wallis, James Dalton, Lewis Whitaker, Elijah B. Bronson, Laben Wallis Jr., William Montgomery, George W. P. Robinson, Richard Brady, Alexander McDaniel.
- 03 Feb 1855: The jury retired to the Jury to consider the case. When they returned, they found for the Plaintiff. Lucy Watson is guilty of withholding from the Plaintiff the premises described in the Declaration. Plaintiff should recover $5 from Lucy Watson and Stephen H. Colms. Benjamin H. Watson is not guilty.
- 05 Feb 1855: Defendants moved for a new trial. The motion was granted. It was ordered that none of the witnesses be listed in the Bill of Costs except for A. J. Walker, Jesse W. Graham, John S. Watson, Triphena Hyder, George Henry and Trustan Leach.
- 28 May 1855: Isaac Buck, surveyor deposed. Triphena Hyder testifies that William Hunter held the Goose lot, then years prior to his death and that he died about the year 1845. By consent of Hunter, Watson put a fence through the Goose Lot, forming a dam to the creek. John Watson was acquainted with the place called the Goose Lot. He had known his father to use it as a pasture ... His Father John Watson died August 22 1857.
- 30 May 1855 - Judge John L. Goodall presiding. Jury: Walter? J. Snodgrass, Mark Lewis, James Brady, William Wallace, Christopher Swinall, John C. Stephens, Dempsey M. Southard, Alexander C. Robertson, John White Sr., Charles Smith, Daniel Lyan, and William Tucker. Thomas B. Murray is the security for the Plaintiff.
- 31 May 1855: Judge John L. Goodall presiding. Plaintiff moved for a new trial. Overruled. Plaintiff wants to appeal at the TN Supreme Court.
- 05 Jun 1855: Plaintiff moved for a new trial at the TN Supreme Court. The appeal was granted. Bartlett gave bond with Thomas B. Murry and William E. Nelson.
NAMES LISTED IN THE COURT CASE
- John Goodall, Judge
- Benjamin Watson, Defendant
- Lucy Watson, Defendant
- John Watson, Defendant
- John Kerly, Defendant
- James, Bartlett, Plaintiff
- Joseph Brown, Clerk
- Joseph Hunter, name on a deed
- William Bartlett, name on a deed
- T. B. Murray, Attorney for the Plaintiff
- M. M. Brien, Attorney for the Plaintiff
- Stephen H. Colms, Attorney for the Defendant
- Foster A. Pirtle
- Robert Wilson
- Simeon Ingle
- Avery Green
- Elijah W. Denton
- Richard Brady
- Joseph W. Clark
- John Parker
- Calvin B. Crook
- Sandy Hickey
- Washington Webb
- Solomon Duncan
- John Henry, added to the Bill
- John Hudgens, added to the Bill
- Hampton Hudgens, added to the Bill
- George G. Dibrell, security for James Bartlett
- Enoch S. Upchurch
- Mathew H. Wallis
- James Dalton
- Lewis Whitaker
- Elijah W. Bronson
- Labain Wallace Jr.
- William Montgomery
- George W. P. Robison
- Richard Bradley
- Thomas Stewart
- John L. Gipson
- Alexander McDaniel
- Wath? J. Snodgrass
- Mark Lowery
- James Snodgrass
- William Wallace
- Christopher Sumold
- John O. Stephens
- Dempsey M. Southard
- Alexander C. Robertson
- John White Sr
- Charles Smith
- Danl Lyan
- William R. Tucker
- William E. Nelson, Security for James Bartlett
- Nathan Bartlett, named in Land Grant 2647
- James Turner, Surveyor in Land Grant 2647
- William Blount, Governor of TN (Land Grant 2647)
- R. Houston, Secretary (Land Grant 2647)
- William Simpson, witness to Deed Joseph Hunter to William Hunter
- William Bartlett, ditto
- N. Oldham, Clerk
- J. W. Roberts, Regsiter
- Abrahm Caruthers, Judge of Circuit Court
- Dudley Hunter, James Hunter, James Hudgens & his wife Patty, formerly Patty Hunter, James Hunter an infant under the age of 21, John Henry Expartee Petition, to sell land and Negroes
- John Henry, Guardian to James Hunter
- John Gipson, testifed in 1846 Circuit Court Case
- Daniel Smith, purchased Negro boy Allen
- Hiram Brown, purchased Old man Robert
- John Bohannon, appointed Special Commissioner
- Willim Little, Clerk
- David Snodgrass, Eqr., Quorum Justices, Chairman
- Joel Whitley, Quorum Justice,
- Elijah W. Denton, Quarum Justice
- John H. Graham, Quorum Justice
- Anthony Dibrell, witness to James Hudgens will
- Nicholas Mercer, witness to James Hudgens will
- Mary Hudgens, Executrix of James Hudgens
- James S. Glenn, Witness to Deed
- John A. Dibrell, Witness to Deed
- Charles McGuire, Register
- M. C. Dibrell, Register
- Isaac Buck, Surveyor
- James K. Polk, Governor of TN
- John F. Voss, Register
- M. C. Dibrell, witness to John Watson Will
- John E. Gipson, Witness to John Watson Will
- Sheriff C. Bohannon
- Sheriff C. Meek