G. T. (Gideon Tibbetts) Ridlon.

History of the ancient Ryedales, and their descendants in Normandy, Great Britain, Ireland, and America, from 860 to 1884 online

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Online LibraryG. T. (Gideon Tibbetts) RidlonHistory of the ancient Ryedales, and their descendants in Normandy, Great Britain, Ireland, and America, from 860 to 1884 → online text (page 65 of 103)
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Capt. George Ridley 1 (1), descended from an old and respectable
family that came from England to Virginia in 1635; was born in Isle of
Wight — now Southampton — County, Va., in 1727 or 1738, and died
Nov. 29, 1835. He claimed to be ninety-seven years old at the time of
his death ; but his widow and children said he lost the count of eleven
years during a severe illness, and that he was one hundred and eight years
of age when he deceased. He married Elizabeth Wetherford, and by her
had eight children. His first wife having died, he married, secondly, in
1777, Sally Vincent (she was born May 23, 1754, and died March 20, 1836),



494 RIDLEYS OF BUTHEHFOHD COUNTY, TENNESSEE.

*

by whom he had eight children, of whom, with other issue, hereafter. He
emigrated from Virginia when young, and settled in east Tennessee, then
a part of North Carolina, on the Holston River, and followed the occupa-
tion of a " cowboy," or, to use polite parlance, a "herdsman." About the
year 1790, he purchased a large tract of land in middle Tennessee, and
removing, settled within one m/le of where the city of Nashville now
stands. Captain Ridley transported his family, household goods, and farm
implements down the Holston River in large flat-boats; thence down the
Tennessee River over the " mussel-shoals," and with the aid of his elder
sons and eight negro-men brought his boats into the Mississipjii River;
thence by hard pulling and pushing with oars and poles up the Cumber-
land River to the present site of Nashville, where he came to anchor in
the middle of the stream, and kept guard to protect himself and family
from the hostile Indians then passing up and down in their canoes. Being
one of the first settlers in middle Tennessee, he immediately erected a
strong timber block-house, surrounded by stockades some ten feet in height,
as a shelter and protection from the Indians. Here he cleared a large farm
and became extensively engaged in agriculture and the raising of stock.
The life of this man was attended with all the adventures and dangers in-
cident to the pioneer of those days, and an interesting volume could be
written on his experience. He was peculiarly qualified to act his part in
leading the van of civilization into the wilderness, by the possession of
remarkable courage, energy, fortitude, and physical endurance. Captain
Ridley was a man possessed of a high sense of honor, and proverbially
regarded as one in whom truth stood above all virtues. He was fond of
prayer and the Holy Scriptures, and in sentiment a Missionary Baptist; this
sentiment he practically exemplified in his relations with his fellow-men.
With a force of will unyielding, whatever idea he embraced was held
with a tenacity peculiarly his own; his traits of character were prom-
inent and clearly defined ; uncompromising and persistent, he would not
allow any thing to stand in the way of his plans, and would drive straight
on and execute where others failed. His characteristics were transmitted
to his posterity, and typical representatives of the old pioneer may now be
found in every branch of the Ridley family. I have not learned how the
title "captain" came to the subject of this notice, but presume to say
he was leader of some company during the Indian wars.

SECOND GENERATION.

Beverly Ridley 2 (1), eldest son of George 1 (1), was born in eastern
Tennessee, July 23, 1762; married Annie Williams(?) (she was born Dec.
18, 1766, died May 30, 1825), and had issue nine children, four sons and
five daughters, of whom hereafter. He married, secondly, Elizabeth Cooch
(she was born May 5, 1793), by whom one child. He was a man of strong
mind and undaunted courage, widely known and highly repected ; died
Oct. 27, 1844.

George Ridley' 2 (2), second son of George 1 (1), was born in eastern
Tennessee, Jan. 11, 1764; married and settled in northern Alabama.

John Ridley 2 (1), third son of George 1 (1), was born in eastern Ten-
nessee, June 5, 1765; married a German lady in the State of Georgia, and
had issue three children, a son and two daughters, of whom hereafter.
Parents died young.

William Ridley 2 (1), fourth son of George 1 (1), was born in eastern
Tennessee, Feb. 2, 1767. He moved from Tennessee to settle in Georgia,



RIDLEYS OF RUTHERFORD COUNTY, TENNESSEE. 495

in tlae early settlement of that State, and in crossing the Tennessee River
was* killed by Indians, with his wife and three children. No representa-
tive^ of his family now survive.

Patsey Ridley' 2 (1). eldest daughter of George 1 (1), was born in east-
ern tTennessee, March 13, 1770; was married to James Wright, and had
a faunily of four sons and four daughters; settled on a plantation in mid-
dle Tennessee.

Betsey Ridley 2 (1), second daughter of George 1 (1), was born in east-
ern ' Tennessee, Feb. 13, 1772; was married twice: firstly, to William
Smith, of eastern Tennessee, and by him had four children; secondly, to

MacMinn, a brother of Governor MacMinn, and by him had two

sons. Her descendants are numerous and respected, — some distinguished.

Sally Ridley 2 (1), third daughter of George 1 (1), was born in eastern
Tennessee, Nov. 28, 1773; was married in 1791 to Maj. John Buchanan
(his second wife), and had thirteen children, many of whom were dis-
tinguished. She was a woman of remarkable courage and fortitude;
cool land self-commanding, and being united to a husband who was a
celebrated pioneer and Indian-fighter, her associations were calculated to
develope those traits of character so necessary in women of the frontier
settlements. Her husband had implicit confidence in his wife's judge-
ment, and confided to her all his plans and undertakings, many of which
were carefully overlooked by her, and of which she in person promptly
executed during the memorable battle at his fort, on the 30th of Septem-
ber, 1792, when the Indians, — about nine hundred warriors from the com-
bined Cherokees, Chickasaws, and Creeks, — made an attack at midnight,
but were badly defeated by only twenty-one men in the fort. In this
fierce conflict of battle, the intrepidity of Mrs. Buchanan's courage, and
fearless deeds performed by her, crowned her through life as a model
Indian-fighter of the West. Her son,* in a letter to the author,
says of his mother: "Her many virtues vie with proud fame of Ten-
nessee's greatness; her posterity from five generations is as numerous as
the leaves on some forest tree, and, although she died in 1832, she lives
in remembrance and affection among hosts of Tennessee's citizenship."
She is said to have been the third white woman born in her State.

Lettie Ridley 2 (1), fourth daughter of George 1 (1), was born in east-
ern Tennessee, Nov. 24, 1776 ; was married to James Roberts, of Jack-
son County, and had three sons and five daughters, all of whom had large
families. One of her granddaughters, Hannah Graham, is the wife of
Hon. Peter Turney, one of the supreme judges of the State of Tennessee.
Lettie was youngest of the first family.

Capt. Vincent Ridley 2 (1), eldest son of George 1 (1) by his second
wife, was born in eastern Tennessee, June 26, 1778 ; married Lydia Ever-
ett, and had issue nine children, of whom hereafter. He was only ten

* Hon. Henry-Kidley Buchanan, to whom I am indebted for much information
relative to this branch of the Ridley family, was born in "Buchanan's Fort," Nov.
8, 1814, and is the youngest son of Sally Ridley. His fancy inclined him to mercan-
tile pursuits, and in 1841 he engaged in an enterprise for trade in an expedition
known as the " Santa F6 Expedition," and, with the entire company, was captured
by the governor of New Mexico, and confined in a chain-gang as a slave for two
years before his condition was known by his friends at home. Through the inter-
vention of President Andrew Jackson and Judge Powhattan Ellis, who was Minister
from the United States to Mexico, he was released and liberated from prison at
Peubla de los Angelos in May, 1843. In 1875 he was, without opposition, elected
from the Counties of Davidson and Williamson to the Senate of Tennessee.



496 RIDLEYS OF RUTHERFORD COUNTY, TENNESSEE.

years old when his father moved from the Holston River to west T31111-
essee.* Made a tour through Kentucky by way of the "Crab Orch;rd"
when a small boy. Was with Gen. Andrew Jackson in the battle of
New Orleans. Owned a large tract of land in the "New Purchase' in
Kentucky. No other information.

Thomas Ridley- (1), second son of George- 1 (1) by his Becond vile,
was born on the Holston River, in Virginia (now Tennessee), Feb. 16,
1780; married Margaret Harwood (whose father was a wealthy Viigin-
ian), a lady of fine accomplishments, with a well and correctly cultivated
mind, and by her had issue seven children, of whom hereafter. When a
boy the subject of this notice moved to Nashville, Tenn. (or near that
city), where he received a liberal education; he afterwards followed the
profession of school-teacher, in which he acquited himself with credit ; his
patrons were well pleased with him; his pupils and all who knew him
loved and respected him. He left "no stone unturned" to advance those
placed under his care, in morals, integrity, and knowledge. After mar-
riage he settled on his farm in Williamson County, Tenn., where he lived in
affluence for many years; was confident of success and prospered in all
the undertakings of life. While on his farm he was elected sheriff of his
County, and held the office for nine years in immediate succession, by
re-election ; and during his term of service generally sympathize 1 with
the suffering and afflicted. His purse was open to all who needed or
seemed to need assistance, which resulted in wasting the wealth he had
hitherto accumulated. He was in every sense a Christian; he culti-
vated a love of justice to friend or foe; and no one could truthfully say
he had wronged anyone in any manner. After having served his County
as sheriff acceptably, Thomas Ridley removed to Franklin County, Tenn.,
where his wife died, leaving four children, who, — their father's attention
to his business demanding his absence from home, — were carried to his
father's (Capt. George Ridley), where they were tenderly cared for and
educated. The latter portion of Mr. Ridley's life was spent alternately
with his daughters, Mary M. Rhine, who lived in Mississippi, and Louisa
A. Horton. A few years anterior to his decease he was afflicted with
dyspepsia with which he suffered greatly, till he yielded to the fell disease,
and (in 1854) died at the house of one of his granddaughters. He said
to those present he was resigned and that all was well. His strong intel-
lect he retained to the last. He was considered, by those who knew him
well, one of the best and most honorable men the age had produced.

Moses Ridley" (1), third son of George 1 (1), by his second wifo, was
born in eastern Tennessee, June 6, 1782; married October, 18<>8, Kate
Haward (she was born March 11, 1793; died Nov. 11, 1841), and had issue
nine children, of whom hereafter. He resided on the Harpeth River, in
Tennessee, until 1818 when he moved to Stewart's Creek, Rutherford
County. Died March 16, 1864.

James Ridley 2 (1), fourth son of George 1 (1) by his second wife, was
born in eastern Tennessee, May 24, 1784; married Feb. 9, 1806, Amy
Hamilton, and had issue nine children, seven sons and two daughters, of
whom hereafter. He lived and died in Davidson County, Tenn., near the



* Capt. Vincent Ridlev was but ten year- <>f age at the time his father mov^d
from his home on the Holston River, and with a negro-man drove the horses arou nd
by land to his new home ou the Cumberland River. The Indians were then hostile,
and on the way young Ridley and his attendant passed by nearly forty emigrants
who had recently been killed by them, but reached their destination without ir.ljury.



RIDLEYS OF RUTHERFORD COUNTY, TENNESSEE. 49*

residence of Gen. Andrew Jackson, with whom he served in the Indian
battles of the South, and acquired a lasting favoritism with the old hero
for signal service and promptness in the discharge of duties in the com-
missary department. He was a wagon-master, and on one occasion, when
an attack was about to be made by the Indians on Jackson's advanced
force, intelligence was sent the commander that a number of his wagons
were detained in a muddy stream and unable to move for want of help.
The danger of the surroundings was iminent and prompt action was re-
quired to have the wagons moved forward. Jackson despatched an
officer with a detachment of men back to the wagon-train, already bur-
ied in water and mud ; it was but a short time, however, before the officer
reported to the general in person that it was impossible to move the wag-
ons. On the reception of the report Jackson straightened himself in the
saddle and said, " By the Eternal ! send Jimmy Ridley to me and I will
have every wagon out in an hour." Ridley was soon sent forward but
found the train more difficult to move than the General had anticipated.
Impatience prompted Jackson to ride back to the place of detention and
give his personal direction ; on reaching the spot he found several officers
sitting on their horses apparently unconcerned, while Ridley was at a
wheel, covered with the mud and slimy water, lifting with all his power.
No sooner had the General's keen eyes espied him than he dashed his
horse to his side, and swinging his sword over his head, shouted at the top
his voice " By the Eternal ! if I had ten thousand Jimmy Ridleys, I
could storm hell and capture the devil." Mr. Ridley never forgot the
event and often mentioned it in after life with feelings of pride and
pleasure. He and General Jackson lived and died within three miles of
each other, the most profound confidence and friendship existing between
them through life.

Abigail Ridley' 2 (1), eldest daughter of George 1 (1) by his second
wife, was born in eastern Tennessee, April 26, 1786 ; was married to Dr.
Charles Mulherin, and had Jive sons whose descendants are farmers of
wealth and note.

Winifred Ridley 2 (1), second daughter of George 1 (1) by his second
wife, was born (presumably) in eastern Tennessee, Feb. 7, 1789; was mar-
ried to Thomas Garrett, and had two sons and two daughters; her descend-
ants occupy positions of respectability in Nashville and its vicinity.

Samuel-Jones Ridley 2 (1), fifth son of George 1 (1) by his "second
wife, was born in Tennessee (place unknown) Oct. 1, 1791 ; married Sally
Hay, an accomplished scholar and popular teacher of Kentucky. No
children.

Henry Ridley 2 (1), sixth son of George 1 (1) by his second wife, and
youngest child of this family, was born in Rutherford County (presum-
ably) Tenn., May 29, 1794 ; married Elizabeth Allison, and had issue
eight children, of whom hereafter. He was a man of considerable note
and of great agricultural worth ; was a member of the State convention
to amend the State constitution.

THIRD GENERATION.

William Ridley 3 (2), eldest son of Beverly 2 (1), was born in Davidson
County, Tenn., Jan. 5, 1793 ; married Oct. 27, 1831, to Minerva-Tennessee
Hamilton (she was born Jan. 13, 1813, and died June 23, 1853), and had
issue four children, of whom hereafter. Mr. Ridley was a private soldier
under Gen. Andrew Jackson in 1814, in fighting the Indians; undoubtedly
32



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fC



498 BIDLEYS OF BUTHEBFOBD COUNTY, TENNESSEE.

at the battle of New Orleans. He was a farmer in Williamson County,
Tenn.

George- Washington Ridley 3 (3), second son of Beverly 2 (1), was
born in Davidson County, Tenn., July 7, 1797; married and had issue
several children, of whom hereafter. He was a specimen of rare genius ;
a native type of indomitable self-will; a man of great boldness and a
stranger to all earthly fear. He enlisted under Capt. Tapley B. An-
drews and Col. Thomas Williamson in the Second Tennesee Mounted
Gun-men, commanded by Gen. Andrew Jackson, against the Seminole
Indians. At the battle of Missisook, east Florida, April 1, 1818, he
was wounded five times at one firing; once on the foot, once on the upper
lip, and three times in the lower part of the abdomen, the bullets passing
directly through him. He was mustered out as wounded, for a furlough,
June 30, 1818, placed on board a vessel at Fort St. Mark, conveyed to New
Orleans, and thence up the Cumberland River to Nashville. One of his
legs was contracted an inch and a half in consequence of wounds ; and he
was ever afterwards subject to fits, so that he could only perform the
lighter kinds of labor. In the presidential campaign between Andrew
Jackson and John Q. Adams in 1824-5, he was warmly and actively in
favor of the former; and after the election of Mr. Adams by the House
of Representatives, his disappointment was so great that he burned his
jiension certificate, with a decided refusal to draw his annuity under the
administration of President Adams ; but, after the election of General
Jackson in 1828-9, he obtained a new certificate and had his pension con-
tinued. He was a corporal in the expedition of 1818. His residence in
1866 was in Franklin, Williamson County, Tenn. During the late Rebel-
lion he remained loyal to the Union. He died Oct. 3, 1873, leaving de-
scendants who resemble him.

Robert Ridley 3 (2), third son of Beverly 2 (1), was born in Davidson
County, Tenn., April 6, 1799; married Sally Houston, and had issue sev-
eral children, of whom hereafter He removed to the State of Missis-
sippi; some say he subsequently settled in Alabama, and died there.

Thomas-Jefferson Ridley 3 (2), fourth son of Beverly 2 (1), was born
in Davidson County, Tenn., Oct. 25, 1804; married and died issueless.
No other information.

Betsey Ridley 3 (2), eldest daughter of Beverly 2 (1), was born in Da-
vidson County, Tenn., March 27, 1787; was married to John Weller, and
had a son who married his cousin, a lady noted for her beauty.

Nancy Ridley 3 (1), second daughter of Beverly 2 (1), was born in Da-
vidson County, Tenn., March 13, 1789; was married to John Ellison, a
silversmith, of Nashville, Tenn., who was the father of a son and daugh-
ter ; the latter was married to the distinguished Methodist divine, Rev. A.
L. P. Green, who has a son of preaching talent.

Polly Ridley 3 (1), third daughter of Beverly 11 (1), was born in David-
son County, Tenn., Feb. 5, 1791 ; never married.

Rebecca Ridley 3 (1), fourth daughter of Beverly 2 (1), was born in Da-
vidson County, Tenn., Aug. 4, 1795; was married to Marshall Jimmerson,
who lived and died in Robertson County, Tenn., leaving, with other issue,
Dr. Samuel Jimmerson, of Edgefield City, an adjunct of Nashville.

Patsey Ridley 3 (2), fifth daughter of Beverly 2 (1), was born in Da-
vidson County, Tenn., March 14, 1801 ; was married, to William Holt, of
Williamson County, and became the mother of several highly respectable
children.



HTl)LErS OF IiUTHEliFOED COUNTY, TENNESSEE. 490

J.-W.-B- Ridley 3 (1), only son of Beverly' 2 (1) by his second wife, was
born in Davidson County, Tenn., April 27, 1830.

John Ridley 3 (2), only son of John 2 (1), was born in Georgia (date
unknown), and having been left an orphan when young, was brought up
among his kinspeople in Tennessee. He was murdered by one Willis
Mullen, of Jackson County, Tenn., who eluded the law and escaped.

Elizabeth Ridley 3 (1), eldest daughter of John' 2 (1), was born in Geor-
gia (date unknown), left an orphan, carried to Tennessee when a child,
and reared among her relatives. She died when about twenty years old,
unmarried.

Mary Ridley 8 (2), second daughter of John' 2 (1), was born somewhere
in Georgia (date unknown), and after the death of her parents was carried
to Tennessee and brought up among her Ridley relatives. She became
the wife of Alexander Buchanan, her cousin, and bore him eight children,
whose descendants are now promiscuously scattered through Tennessee,
as useful citizens.

George-Martin Ridley 8 (4), eldest son of Vincent' 2 (1), was born in
Sparta, Tenn., Oct. 2, 1800 ; married in 1819 to Martha-Louis, daughter
of John and Elizabeth Young (she was born Aug. 13, 1800), and died
Aug. 9, 1873, having had issue ten children, of whom hereafter. He
moved with his father to Maury County, Tenn., in 1809. In 1829 he
went to Claiborne parish, La, but having lost his health, he returned to
his old homestead in Tennessee in 1832. In 1852 he migrated to San
Marcus, Tex. He organized a Masonic Lodge at the latter place in 1853,
which was one of the first west of the Rio Colorado. He cleared a farm
in 1854 on the upper Gaudalope River (then in a Republic), now Kerr
County, Tex. In company with his son's family, in 1859, he moved to
DeWitt County, Tex.; thence to Fort Worth in 1859, and in the spring
of 1865 returned to Kerr County, where he broke up house-keeping, and
went to live in his daughter's family. Mr. Ridley was a mason of high
standing, and assisted in the organization of many lodges in Texas; also
several times elected delegate to the Grand Lodge. He was a consistent
Christian, devoted to his Bible, and died in the assurance of a resurrec-
tion from the dead to immortality at the second appearing of Jesus Christ
on earth.

Elizabeth Ridley 8 (2), eldest daughter of Vincent 2 (1), was born in

Sparta, Tenn., and was married to Ward, a carpenter by trade. No

particulars.

Thomas-Everett Ridley 3 (3), second son of Vincent 2 (1), was born
in Sparta, Tenn., in 1803; married Asenath-Reese Hudson, and had isssue
four children, of whom hereafter. Mr. Ridley was a farmer in middle
Tennessee till the excitement about California gold-mines caused him to
visit that territory. He assisted in the organization of Mariposa County,
and was elected to the first session of the State Legislature. On his way
home to get his family he was seized with cholera, and died off Key West.

John-Topp Ridley 3 (3), third son of Vincent 2 (1), was born in Smith
County, Tenn., June 22, 1806 ; married Lovinia Klyce, Jan. 24, 1826, and
had issue nine children, of whom hereafter. He received a fair English
education ; apprenticed himself to learn the trade of wagon- and coach-
builder, and acquired a handsome fortune in that business. Was a farm-
overseer in Alabama a year. Carried on business at Columbia four years ;



500 BIDLEYS OF BUTHEBFOBT) COUNTY, TENNESSEE.

thence moved to Brownsville, Tenn., where he was engaged in business till
the spring of 1838, when he moved to a new tract of land in the "New
Purchase " of Kentuckv, where he carried on farming and manufacturing
until he and his family lost their health and were obliged to return to
Tennessee. He lost heavily in injudicious investments in mail-contracts
and speculation.* He is now a thrifty, money-making farmer, owning the
farm upon which he lives, one and a half miles from the city of Hempstead,
Tex. He has filled several civil, military, and official positions ; was chief
justice of Fayette County for six years ; served as agent under the United
States Government in removing the Creek Indians from Alabama to their
reservation. He held a commission as captain in the militia. Has lived
in seven states. A member of the Methodist church fifty years. Has
lived with his wife fifty-three years. He is a gentleman of great worth,
esteemed by all who have come within the circle of his acquaintance — a
Christian in every sense.

Winifred-Hays Ridley 3 (2), second daughter of Vincent' 2 (1), was
born in Maury County, Tenn.; was married to Rev. James Mitchell, and
is now living a widow near Johnson's Grove, west Tenn. No children.

Dr. Rufus-King Ridley 3 (1), fourth son of Vincent- (1), was born in

Maury County, Tenn. ; married Klyce, and had issue four children,

of whom hereafter. He resides at Jacksonport, Jackson County, Ark.,
and is eminent in his profession.

Sarall-Hays Ridley 3 (1), third daughter of Vincent 2 (1), was born in
Maury County, Tenn. ; was married twice ; firstly, to Klyce ; sec-
ondly, to a Methodist preacher, name unknown, and resides near Bell
Depot, western Tenn. Had one son now deceased.

Lydia Ridley 3 (1), fourth daughter of Vincent' 2 (1), was born in Maury
County, Tenn. ; was married to Henry A. Miller, a merchant, and had three
children.

Young-Lafayette Ridley 3 (1), youngest son of Vincent 2 (1), was born
in Maury County, Tenn., and died in Kentucky, unmarried.



Sally-Vincent Ridley 3 (2), eldest daughter of Thomas' 2 (1), was born
in Williamson County, Tenn., July 4, 1807; was married to John-McNitt
Sharp, a politician and farmer. She is long since dead.

Beiljamill-L. Ridley 3 (1), eldest son of Thomas' 2 (1), was born in



Online LibraryG. T. (Gideon Tibbetts) RidlonHistory of the ancient Ryedales, and their descendants in Normandy, Great Britain, Ireland, and America, from 860 to 1884 → online text (page 65 of 103)