AHGP Transcription Project


Simpson County


Simpson County was formed in 1819, out of parts of Logan, Warren, and Allen counties, and named after Capt. John Simpson; it was the 63rd county formed, and retains its original boundaries. It is situated in the extreme southern part of the state; is bounded north by Warren, east by Allen, south by the Tennessee state line (which separates it from Sumner and Robertson counties, Tenn.), and west by Logan county; and is drained by Big Barren river and its tributaries, on the north and east, and on the south by Red River. The surface is generally level, or slightly undulating. The soil, based on limestone, with red clay foundation, is very productive. The staple products are wheat, corn, oats, and tobacco; a large portion of the county is fine grazing land.

Towns
Franklin, on the Louisville and Nashville railroad, and on the turnpike between the two places, 134 miles south of Louisville, 51 north of Nashville, Tennessee, 6 miles north of the Tennessee state line, and about 150 miles from Frankfort; contains a fine brick court house and other county buildings, 13 lawyers, 11 physicians, 6 churches (1 used by Baptist and Reformed or Christian, 1 Methodist E. South, 1 Cumberland Presbyterian, 1 Roman Catholic, and 2 for colored people), 24 stores (14 dry goods, 2 hardware, 1 jewelry, 7 grocery), 3 hotels, 31 mechanics' shops and factories, 4 mills (1 wool carding, 1 saw, and 2 flouring), 1 National bank, 1 male and 1 female seminary of high grade, 1 newspaper (Franklin Sentinel, commenced Dec. 14, 1867), and several other business establishments; population in 1870, 1,808, an increase of nearly 1,000 since 1860, and growing steadily; incorporated Nov. 2, 1820, and named after Dr. Benjamin Franklin.
Middleton, 9 miles west of Franklin, on the Russellville road, has a hotel, 2 stores, 2 physicians, 3 mechanics' shops, a tannery, and about 60 inhabitants.
Palmyra, on the upper Scottsville road, 8 miles east of Franklin, has about 40 inhabitants, a store, and several shops.

Members of the Legislature from Simpson County

Senate
Dr. A. C. Vallandigham, 1867-71.

House of Representatives
Wm. Lynch, 1820, '21;
John A. Robertson, 1822;
Wm. Hodge, 1824;
Jas. Miller, 1825;
Wm. Harris, 1826;
Henry B. Montague, 1827, '28;
Wm. J. Williams, 1829, '30, '31;
Jas. Davidson, 1832;
John W. Williams, 1833;
Joel Hudspeth, 1834, '35;
John Finn, 1836,'38;
David S. Hammond, 1837, '39, '40;
Beverly L. Clarke. 1841, '42;
Levi Dickey, 1843, '44;
Samuel Hatfield, 1845, '47, 51-53;
John Hoy, 1846;
Wm. H. Eubank, 1848, '49;
Asbury Dawson, 1850, '69-71;
John C. McCreary, 1853-59;
John A. Finn, 1859-61;
John M. Henry, 1861-63;
J. F. Lauck, 1863-65;
H. G. Harris, 1865-67;
Wm. W. Bush, 1867-69, '71-73;
Richard P. Finn, 1873-75.

Antiquities
A Giant, from a mound on the farm of Eden Borrowes, near Franklin, were exhumed, in May, 1841, at a depth of over 12 feet, several human skeletons. One, of extraordinary dimensions, was found between what appeared to have been two logs, covered with a wooden slab. Many of the bones were entire. The under jaw-bone was large enough to fit over the jaw, flesh and all, of any common man of the present day. The thighbones were full six inches longer than those of any man in Simpson County. Teeth, arms, ribs, and all, gave evidence of a giant of a former race. Around his neck was a string of 120 copper beads, and one bead of pure silver, all perfectly preserved. Another skeleton, of smaller dimensions, had around his neck a string of ivory beads, about 100 in number. The string which had held the beads was still apparent, though time had destroyed its consistence.



Capt. John Simpson, after whom Simpson County was named, migrated with his father from Virginia to Lincoln County, Kentucky, at an early day. His first experience in war on a large scale against the Indians, was under Gen. Wayne, at the battle of the Fallen Timbers in 1794. At the instance of the lamented Col. John Allen, he afterwards removed to Shelbyville, studied law and entered upon the practice there, rapidly attaining success and distinction. He represented Shelby County in the legislature, in 1806, '09, '10, and '11, and at the last session was chosen speaker. In August, 1812, he was elected to congress.

When the aggressions of Great Britain upon the rights and interests of the United States led to a declaration of war, Kentucky was called upon to furnish 5,500 men, as her quota of the 100,000 authorized by congress to be received into the service. Mr. Simpson raised a company of riflemen, as part of the regiment of his old friend. Col. John Allen, which became part of Gen. John Payne's brigade, and marched with the first troops from Kentucky to reinforce Gen. Hull at Detroit. Capt. Simpson's company participated in the gallant but disastrous event at the River Raisin, where Allen and Simpson both sealed their devotion to their country by their blood. Capt. John Simpson, after whom Simpson County was named, migrated with his father from Virginia to Lincoln County, Kentucky, at an early day. His first experience in war on a large scale against the Indians, was under Gen. Wayne, at the battle of the Fallen Timbers in 1794. At the instance of the lamented Col. John Allen, he afterwards removed to Shelbyville, studied law and entered upon the practice there, rapidly attaining success and distinction. He represented Shelby County in the legislature, in 1806, '09, '10, and '11, and at the last session was chosen speaker. In August, 1812, he was elected to congress.

When the aggressions of Great Britain upon the rights and interests of the United States led to a declaration of war, Kentucky was called upon to furnish 5,500 men, as her quota of the 100,000 authorized by congress to be received into the service. Mr. Simpson raised a company of riflemen, as part of the regiment of his old friend. Col. John Allen, which became part of Gen. John Payne's brigade, and marched with the first troops from Kentucky to reinforce Gen. Hull at Detroit. Capt. Simpson's company participated in the gallant but disastrous event at the River Raisin, where Allen and Simpson both sealed their devotion to their country by their blood.


Source: History of Kentucky, Volume II, by Lewis Collins, Published by Collins & Company,
Covington, Kentucky, 1874


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