are few documented records about Samuel Holt. He
was the first son, second child, of Wyatt Holt and
his first wife. Although he grew up in
Buncombe County, North Carolina, he was born in
1802, in Rowan County, in or near the town of
Salisbury. The exact time his father moved their
family from Salisbury is unknown...he first
had to fulfill an obligation to train an orphan
boy as an apprentice in the Joiners trade which
began February of 1805. By 1810, Sam's
father had moved the family south into Buncombe
County, where he later bought property on Shaws
Creek in a wilderness area, a few miles west of
Hendersonville. The family
resided there until the end of 1824.
was living with his parents when he married
sometime in 1819- 20. He was 17 or 18
years of age when he married an
older woman. The age of their first
child varies in the Census;
therefore, we cannot predict an accurate year of their
marriage. The age of his wife, Asenath,
varies in all census, so her age remains
unconfirmed. However, if born in
1790-91 as recorded, she may have been age 29 - 30 when they
Samuel's wife seemed
to be named ASEANETTE ...per
handwriting by the 1870 Census Taker.
However, a careful study of names
penned by this Census Taker was made.
Results showed that names with a 'th'
were written similar, each having a
wide-stroke on the ' h' and
crossed like a 't '. This was used
for names Elizabeth, Martha, Cintha,
Catharine, Nathan, Rutha and
Matthew. Because this same
stroke of his pen was used in writing the name Aseanette,
this study revealed he actually wrote the name
Aseaneth ... which was another
misspelling for the name often suspected as being
her true name...ASENATH. A
check of these census pages 1-19, will easily
... her true name was ASENATH, the Biblical
name of Joseph's wife. With her
nickname being 'Seny', this was another
reason her real name was thought to be Asenath.
The 1870 Census now proves
this. Derivatives of her name used
in census, church and mortality records
are: Sena, Seny, Seneth, Sina and Acenth.
1840, the census birth
data for Asenath was in the
40-50 age column (1790-1800), while Samuel,
b 1802, was accurately in the
30-40 age column (1800-1810). In 1850,
her age was listed as 52 (1798); then 1860,
at age 70 (1790), and in 1870,
at age 75 (1795).
Cocke County, Tennessee records her death in March
of 1880, at
age 90 years (1790). With such
differences in the ages she gave in her
census, it is obvious Asenath did not want to tell
her true age, which seems to point towards
the oldest date being her true age.
often reveals when some women were young, they
gave their correct age in the census.
As they aged and apparently became
sensitive about it, they grew younger
in the records ... that is, until they were so old
that some family member told their age. Considering
all of Asenath's records, it seems she was
sensitive being older than Samuel.
in the past believed Asenath
gave her last son her maiden name...
Bradley...but research through the years found no
record of an Asenath BRADLEY (by any
spelling). Also, this Researcher found
she was not listed among the Bradley families
living in the French Broad River area near to
Holt's property at Shaws Creek. Bradley
descendants have done extensive research into the
North and South Carolina families for years,
uncovering much data, but Asenath's
name was not with any individual family record.
been thought Asenath visited kinfolk
living in the general area of Shaws Creek at some
time. She certainly didn't live in
that wilderness by herself! It seems unlikely
young Samuel traveled very far to court his
bride...considering he still lived in his father's house
in a wilderness until he
married. Nevertheless...if Seny's father did
not live or work there, then she must
have visited kinfolk in the area. However,
it's still possible Sam met her in Greenville,
South Carolina ...if and when he and father
traveled there for supplies or work.
For now it remains a mystery how they met.
the search for Asenath's father among the
Bradley lineage, Asa Bradley was a good
candidate for he was the only Bradley in Buncombe
County in 1810, per census, living not
far from the Wyatt Holt family. In
1820, Asa Bradley was still there. The
spelling of Asenath's name begins basically the
same as Asa's ... so with no other
clues about her father, it seemed logical to
try and place her with Asa's family. However,
none of his census can support Asenath being
part of his family.
to square one, all correspondence from past
years becomes the focus from which to search in
another direction. In doing so an Email
(saved for 5 years) was found which
mentioned TIDANCE BRADLEY as son of
ABRAHAM BRADLEY of Greenville, S.C.
The U. S. Census was not OnLine when this
first came in and altho kept, it was out of
sight and out of mind. But Tidance
Bradley was now easily found in 1800 Census,
Greenville County. Along with his wife,
Susannah Roy, they were in the age column of
16-26 years. Susannah was the daughter of Thomas
Roy of Greenville, South Carolina.
(More on the Roy family is below.)
this Census, Tidance and Susannah had
1 son and 1 daughter under age 10.
Their son was named Greenberry. In his
later census he was called Granberry, Green
B. and just plain Green Bradley. The
name of the daughter, his sister, has not been
found listed anywhere! Per this census,
she was from age 1 to 9 years old...1791-1799.
Green was born the
22nd of January in 1800.
His birthdate is very important for being born in
the first month and also counted
in that year census means his Sister
was definitely older than him.
This broadens possibility that Asenath was
his Sister; however ... proof
of his Sister's name is needed.
Using Tidance's 1800 Census with her 1840
and 1850 Census with Samuel, Asenath may have been
born in 1798 ... and likely only 2 years older
than Green. Yet IF she was born in 1790, as
her 1860 Census and death record gives,
she was at least a good '9' years
older than Green! Clearly...IF Asenath was 9
years older than her brother, she may have
been his 'half-sister' ...a child Susannah
may have had before marrying Tidance!
It is unlikely that many years difference
would have existed in their ages otherwise
... .for Tidance and Susannah had other children
born abt every two years after Green's
birth. After researching Asenath since 1977, it's
taken this long to allow this avenue of
thought after no firm record came to light. Still
...this is a theory and is 'not set in
stone' for the truth is simply unknown.
YET... IF Tidance Bradley's 1810 Census
were found we could probably have the answers!
April 30, 1802, TIDANCE BRADLEY was among the
Legatees in Greenville, South Carolina, District
Court, who relinquished claim to the 150
acres of land on the Saluda River
owned by the recently deceased THOMAS ROY.
Witnesses signed 16 October 1802, and it was
recorded October 30, 1802. In order to
provide for Thomas' widow, Margaret,
all agreed to give the land to ISAAC BOWEN,
in exchange for him & family taking care of
Margaret. Isaac was married to
MARY ROY, daughter of Thomas and Margaret. They
married 11 May 1785, in Wilkes County, N.C. This
sheds light on where the Roy's lived before
migrating to Greenville. There would be no
reason for Tidance Bradley
to be mentioned in this document unless he was
married to the Roy's daughter. So this is
proof Thomas Roy was indeed Susannah Bradley's
father. The Roy's had five daughters and one
son, per census. The son, George, was
listed in this document, but his sisters were
not...a common practice towards women back in
those days. IF ...proof is found that
Tidance and Susannah Roy Bradley were the parents
of our Asenath Holt, this information
will also add two more Ancestors to our family
tree .... Thomas and Margaret Roy. This
document is posted on GenForum's
ROY Family Forum, Post # 3844.
Many thanks to Annette Bowen
for sharing this document ... and
marriage data. <email@example.com>
1820, Tidance Bradley was in Greenville, South
Carolina, Census with 3 sons and 3 daughters ...
with 1 daughter in the 16-25 age column,
(which fits his 1800 Census) and 2 daughters in
the 10-15 age column. IF Asenath was born in
1790-91, per Tidance and Asenath's
census ... then she was not this older
daughter in their home. Asenath would have been
age 29 or 30 in 1820. So, instead of this
daughter being Asenath, another daughter may have
been born in 1802, and, at age 18 would
have been in the 16-26 category. Yet IF this
female was Aseneth, with an incorrect
age listed, then she was still unmarried and
living with parents. This could be solved IF
Tidance's 1810 Census could be found.
the birth of Tidance Holt,
Asenath and Samuel's first
child, was actually 'sometime' in 1821, and
not in 1822 ... then they may have been
married at time of the 1820 Census. No
date is known when this census was taken.
No proof seems to exist when Tidance was
born, but 1821 is the date generally accepted, per
1830, Tidance Bradley and
wife were still living in
Greenville, South Carolina, per the U.S. Census.
They were living alone...both in the 50-60 age
column. In the Census
INDEX ... Tidance Bradley's name is
misspelled as Sidener ... but
on the original page, it is written
clearly as Tidance not Sidener.
Those familiar with this name can see this at
once. The Census Taker's 'T' was
mistaken to be an 'S' by a person Indexing this
1840, Tidance Bradley's name is again misspelled
in the Census INDEX. One only needs to
view the original census page to see that the name
Tidance was heard by the Census Taker as Didan
ce but the Index lists him only as Didan.
In this Census, Tidance and wife were in the 60 to
70 age columns, with one female, age 10 under
15 ... and most likely a visiting
1850, Tidance Bradley was deceased. His
wife, Susannah, was listed in the Census
with their son, Greenberry
Bradley. Susannah's age was
given as 83 (1767). This family had
moved to Bradley County, Tennessee.
Greenberry named his one-year-old son,
Tidance. By 1860, Susannah Bradley was
deceased and her son, Greenberry, had
moved his family to Ringgold in Catoosa County,
Georgia, where he continued farming.
The N. E. corner of Catoosa County
borders Bradley County, Tennessee. Four
of Green's children were living at home in
1870 and he was still in Catoosa County at 1880
Census. He died there 21 Aug 1887.
Evidence is needed to determine if Samuel Holt's
wife, Asenath, was the older sister of
Greenberry Bradley. If anyone has this
information please contact me. Thanks, Jean.
interesting data and alot more
food-for-thought as research continues:
seems most Researchers agree on the names of
ABRAHAM and SARAH BRADLEY's children: Priscilla,
AQUILLA, George, TIDANCE, Isaac,
John and ELIZABETH.
to the names of Asenath and Samuel Holt's
children, it is likely she named them all.
They were: TIDANCE, Jasper N.,
SARAH, Oliver, Delilah, ELIZABETH, Mary
Adeline, Rufus and BRADLEY.
Although she did not give the
first name of 'Susannah' to a
daughter, it might have been a middle name
for one of the girls. Still ...
Asenath may not have been the daughter of Tidance
and Susannah Bradley...YET she did give
four Bradley and Lane family names to her
children. With this pattern of naming
children, it may be that Asenath's parents
named her for one of Tidance Lane's daughters.
This is such a mystery!
well-known Baptist preacher in those days ....
TIDANCE LANE, listed his children's names in his
Will: Samuel, JOHN, SARAH, AQUILLA,
Richard, Joseph, SENIA, Tidance,
and Dutton, b 1786. (NOTE: Senia is
a known derivative of the name
Asenath.) Samuel and Dutton
Lane were in the 1850 Greene County,
Tennessee Census. If Dutton Lane was born
(per census) in 1786, that's only 4-5 yrs older
than Asenath ...IF... she was indeed born ca
1790-91. Regarding Senia Lane, some
researchers have different data for this child:
some say Senia was female, others say Senia Lane
was male. But no one seems to know
what happened to her - him... still ... by the
name, it appears to be for a female.
Some believe Abraham Bradley's wife, SARAH,
was a descendant from the same LANE lineage
as the Rev. Tidance Lane. It is very
interesting that Abraham and Sarah named some of
their children the same as Rev. Lane's children. Whether
this was from admiration or a family connection,
is not known.
going through past Emails from Bradley
Researchers, it is clear that much
is left to be proven
regarding the South Carolina
lineage. Hugh Johnson, his wife, Sarah Lane
Bradley, and family lived on Shaws Creek.
Her father was George Bradley, brother to
Tidance, both sons of Abraham, per
information from a descendant. Wyatt sold some
property to James Johnson when he left
North Carolina, and Hugh Johnson was
James' son! Turns out there were
several Bradley families in that area.
Asenath gave a different age in most census, it's
possible in 1820, she might
have said her age was "25" even if
she was older. In Wyatt Holt's
Census, his Wife was not listed and it
has been thought she was incorrectly listed
in the 16-25 age column with daughter, Mary.
But what IF... Wyatt's wife was
missed by the Census
Taker because she was not at home... and,
the other woman, age 25, was Asenath?
is possible that Wyatt's wife was
missed by the Census Taker IF she was
not at home when he came. It was time for little Elizabeth
Elmira to be born... so... she may have been taken
to the Doctor's office early to wait the
birth there? We have no
records of how things worked in that wilderness
area, and In those days a Doctors
office probably was in his home. He may have
had an extra room or two for overnight
patients. Or, perhaps Wyatt's wife was at the
house of kinfolk's not discovered as yet. OR, at
a close friend's house? If she
had problems with her last birth, it may have
been decided for her and baby's well-being,
to take her where she could be helped immediately. These
are questions we will likely not ever have an
answer for. But, from research
experience we find that the more details are
studied, sometimes the answer becomes fairly
true that mid-wives were usually brought to the
home when a baby was coming. But ...
there was some reason Wyatt's wife was not
listed in this Census, which is where
theories...and speculations...come in, for
we know not why his wife was missed in the
1820 Census. She had two more children
after 1820, so she was not dead.
But knowing that she apparently died after
Hiram's birth in 1824 ...
we can rightfully consider she was
having problems giving birth. Therefore, it's quite
possible the pending birth held much
are some theories with possibilities.
But whatever was the truth, whether it was a
simple Census Taker error or not, it remains
that Wyatt's wife was either not counted in
the 1820 census... OR ... she was counted
incorrectly, for she was still living.
with these family names through the years,
we get to know them pretty well. Then
suddenly after many years a logical answer will
pop up out of the blue, just as if we were
seeing these people for the first time.
When mentioning to Cousin
Richard Holt that Asenath might have
been the extra 25-year-old listed in
the 1820 Holt census, he
gave forth a theory
that IF she indeed was the extra woman
listed, it could be she was not a visitor but
that Samuel and Asenath were already married
and she was living in the home! IF
... this was the case ... then they were
newlyweds!...and she gave her age younger than she
really was! This theory would
make perfect sense, and seem to solve the mystery
of the extra woman!
... as previously noted, Tidance Bradley's
1820 Census had a daughter in the 16-25 age
category... and...since Asenath gave her birth
year to be 1790 in 3 of her census...this
also fits Tidance Bradley's 1800 Census. In
reality, she was actually age 29 or 30. So
IF she and Samuel were married and she was the
extra woman in their census, it could be
very likely Tidance Bradley had
another daughter born circa 1802 who would fit in
his 1820 Census. If only we could find
the 1810 Census for Tidance Bradley.
With Samuel Holt being the eldest son,
he likely worked daily with his father
as he grew up. In
those days children worked side by side with
parents in the fields and/or in the
father's occupation. They learned very early
to work for a living. Rowan County Court
records show that Wyatt Holt was a
Joiner, which was someone skilled in the art or
craft of fine woodwork, which included making
cabinets, stairs and furniture.
quite possible Wyatt made and sold furniture, and if so,
Samuel would have been his helper and would have
traveled around with him to sell the furniture
from an early age. During months of easy passage
thru the mountain areas, they could sell furniture
when not gardening and/or tending to whatever he
farmed or raised for extra income. Quite
possibly as teenagers, Samuel and brother,
James, may have gone by themselves to sell
furniture, so their father could stay with the
family at Shaws Creek.
might have happened but ..no proof
of this theory
exists at this time. Did one
of Wyatt Holt's children pass down stories about
him making and selling furniture?
a story would help make sense as to how
Samuel, (being so young when he married)
knew how to safely travel
through mountain areas, back and forth
from North Carolina to South Carolina, with a new
wife...for...that's exactly what he did over a
period of years! It's possible Seny's
father needed help to bring in his crops,
and if so, Samuel may have moved back
and forth into S.C. to work on his
father-in-law's farm at different
times. This theory as to why Sam
migrated between the two states may indeed have
merit. Now knowing the
"Buncombe Turnpike" was built starting
in 1824 through 1828, Samuel could have
traveled this road to Greeneville, South Carolina.
(See "Travel Data" on page titled
'Selling Real Estate for more about
the Buncombe Turnpike.)
Shaws Creek area where Wyatt Holt owned property
is shown on the Pisgah Quadrangle 1906 geological
survey map. This creek flows into the French Broad River,
a mile more-or-less from Wyatt's land.
The French Broad flows near to the Pickens County,
South Carolina line. It is uncertain where
Samuel and Seny lived 'at
times' in South Carolina... but in 1850,
Samuel lived in Pickens County with his second
family ... so he knew that area. (Click the
LINK found on page titled "From Rowan Co.
to Buncombe Co." to see the Shaws
has been confirmed that large Rafts cannot be
used on the creeks flowing off the French Broad River
in order to join a South Carolina
river. "The French Broad
River Basin is formed by
the Eastern Continental Divide ... so
none of the streams entering the French
Broad River Basin enter into or
exit from South Carolina.
Some streams in far south
and east of Henderson County enter South
Carolina, but those streams have some of the most
severe whitewater in the eastern
United States." Quoted from a most
reliable source. This means only canoes,
kayaks and small rafts can maneuver through those
creeks in different places for most
creeks have huge rocks in them ... so straight
passage was not possible. Therefore, the
creeks were not used for travel.
Wyatt Holt traveled by horse and
wagon, which would have been a slow way to
go ... especially in that part of the
country ... at times he may have traveled
up and down the French Broad
River on a flat-bottom barge he built
himself, selling his furniture in
villages easily reached via the river. At
times he may have traded his furniture for
items needed. Bartering was often the way
supplies were obtained from store-keepers.
Also, farmers often traded among themselves. Perhaps
we will never know why he bought property that had
easy access to the French Broad River, or,
why he chose to live in the wilderness
rather than in a town ...but, because he grew up
around a lot of creeks in Rowan County, that kind
of environment may have felt like home. Cheaper
furniture may have been quicker to make
from the sappling trees
on his property, as well as furniture made
from the canes growing along Shaws Creek.
It is possible he made this same kind of
furniture in Rowan County for quick sale, in
addition to better-made furniture. (Today, North
Carolina is noted for fine furniture made from the
variety of trees that grow there.)
article about travel on the French Broad
River years ago is on a website for the
Old Buncombe County, North
Carolina, Genealogical Society at <http://www.obcgs.com/travel.html>.
This article refers to a book that was honored by
the Library of Congress and written by Wilma
Dykeman, titled "The French
Broad". The Reader is opened to
the very earliest known days along the French
Broad River. Because Wyatt Holt and family
lived on Shaws Creek that pours into
the French Broad, his descendants can learn
about the dangerous and primitive way of life the
settlers (he too being an early settler) faced in
that area of the American wilderness.
Unfortunately, Shaws Creek and Wyatt Holt
are not named within this book,
but places all around his area are named...so it
gives a good understanding of what those days
were like for him and family. In
realizing he raised a family in a wilderness,
keeps one from losing sight that regardless of
Wyatt Holt being a furniture maker, and
carpenter...his house could have been a crude log
house made from trees likely on his
property. With carpentry
ability, his house may have consisted of more than
the usual 2 or 3 rooms the book mentions most
settlers had. This book
tells of the rich soil along the French Broad and
the thick growth of canebrakes.
By this we can know Wyatt had good soil for
farming, and canes were there for
making furniture....if indeed
he made furniture from canes.. This book is about
real American pioneers like our own ancestor,
Wyatt Holt, who made his living in that vast
wilderness along the French Broad River.
first clue to Wyatt's
capabilities was the discovery by
Cousins Mary and Lee of Knoxville of his
craft being fine woodwork and furniture
learning about the wilderness where he lived,
we have considerably more understanding of his 'daily
lifestyle'. We know that he owned
property ... and to feed his family we can assume
he farmed some. He was a Christian and raised his
family in the Baptist faith. Theories can
point to an even closer view of his life by using
may ask...Why try to figure out how Wyatt Holt
made a living for his family? Because this site is
mainly about him. Much about his
life is a mystery due to lack of documented
evidence, and so the environment of a
family can often give very
credible clues that may have
gone unnoticed. So looking into every clue gives
possible insight into the life of this
man who was our Ancestor.
Because of him we have breath and the
fortune of living in the most plentiful times
Holt's property is among
clues about his life that has sparked these theories.
Some may come to agree these clues, (being
unique to his environment),
are theories worth consideration ... although
we may never prove his precise lifestyle.
Yet It may be interesting to some
descendants that we take a closer look at what
is known, for it
is unlikely Wyatt made
his full living at farming ... simply
because he was a Joiner and carpenter, with
his trade specialty being in furniture making.
Wyatt became a property owner, it's reasonable
to consider he made furniture using wood of
his own trees, altho using large-size
trees may have been no short and easy
process... yet old records mention of a Mill being
only a few miles from Shaws Creek.
Having a big family would necessitate a need
to increase his income, so likely he made
and sold a type of furniture he built specially
for wilderness living ... doing this when he
wasn't farming or clearing his land.
His craft would have helped them survive the
hardships of those times. Although his property was
5 miles or so from Hendersonville, back then
it might have been a longer route for the city
would not have extended out as far as today.
Likely in 1815-1820 the trails would have been
very rough and winding, thus
creating longer passage into town than by the
roads built in later years.
what N.C. history mentions about Shaws Creek
is needful in order to figure out how useful this
Creek was to the Holt's daily life. The Creek
today is from 8 to 20 feet across in
different places of its course but it is not
a very deep creek. Where there are some
deeper places along the creek may be due to heavy
rainy seasons of years past which caused the
force of running water to dig into the
creekbed ... yet it doesn't now show it ever
was up to knee deep Sources
knowledgeable about Shaws Creek say,
from what is known of the area, this
creek is believed to be much the
same today as it was when Wyatt Holt
and family lived there. By this
we know Shaws Creek was never used for
straight travel. Wyatt Holt possibly traveled to
towns for supplies via the close-by French
Broad River, or , by horse and wagon into
addition to raising food for family and
farm animals ... (a cow, two horses, pigs,
chickens? etc) ... what Wyatt needed was a cheap
and fast way to make furniture that
country people could afford.
recap, the idea of Wyatt Holt making
furniture using canes is not out of
the question ... canebrakes were and
are found along creeks. Why does this idea merit
Because he was an established Joiner-Carpenter in
court records. A Joiner was a
craftsman with ability to do intricate woodwork
and this record proves Wyatt Holt was a
Master craftsman. Research revealed the
Court system appointed only Master's in their
profession to take an Apprentice to train. Working
with wood was his profession, not farming. That
Wyatt made furniture to sell is a
credible theory. Years ago people
would go into small towns with
a wagonload of chairs and sometimes small
tables, made of canes ...some
for household use and some was yard
furniture. It was not unusual to see "cane
chairs" in any country home or out
in a yard.
give this theory a big
boost is the fact that Wyatt Holt apparently
always lived on a Creek.
He grew up In Salisbury, Rowan County,
N.C. and within this area were a number of very
long, major creeks. A map of the area
will show this area had alot of water. But
wilderness areas were not heavily populated, so
alot of tree and brush foliage growth remained
untouched for years in many places.
Along the creeks grew tall, sturdy canes.
Country people had no fishing
pole other than a CANE pole and they
were plentiful. These same canes were used
to make "furniture". It may be
safe to consider a creek owner might have
appreciated someone removing canes from his creek
banks and saving him the chore. If Wyatt
used canes growing on his Shaws Creek property,
could be at times he needed more canes. If
so, he could have made a deal with a neighbor to
use his canes and in payment he would present the
neighbor with a new cane chair per the
number of canes he removed.
This theory may well have merit.
and rattan are types of canes used in these
days to make this same kind of basic
furniture. So ... IF
Wyatt Holt made furniture to sell and IF he
actually traveled up and down the
French Broad River to sell his creations
... cane furniture would have cost him
nothing but his labor. Plus ... this
furniture would have been lighter and easier
to haul than solid wood furniture.
Canes grew along creeks and Wyatt owned 355
acres on both sides of
Shaws Creek. Profits from cane
furniture would have been clear income to support
his family. Or could well have been
traded for some other
product. This may have been the
reason Wyatt Holt bought creek property less than
1-1/2 miles from the French Broad
River. Therefore ... Shaws Creek
may be the best clue that Wyatt Holt sold
and/or traded furniture he made from canes,
in addition to any furniture he made from sapling
trees and other North Carolina
trees on his property.
possible Wyatt discovered the areas around Cocke
and Greene counties in Tennessee, while
traveling on the French Broad River for it
flows into Cocke County from where he lived in
Buncombe County, N.C. Or, with Caney Branch being
a few miles north of the Cocke County line,
he may have found the area while selling cane
furniture there. Since we do not know
the answer to this, still it's a thought that may
be mentioned on this site in other places.
CHILDREN OF SAMUEL HOLT AND
and Asenath Holt's first child was son,
Tidance Holt. In
1850, 1860 and 1880, his census gave
North Carolina as his birthplace. But
his 1870 census gave South
Carolina for his birthplace...which
was apparently in error. His
birth year may have ranged from
sometime in 1820 to early 1822,
but it is thought he was
born in 1821. When
he married, Tidance lived in Greene County,
Tennessee for a few years but then he moved
into Cocke County ... adjoining Greene
County's south side, where he lived out his
life. A street and small Baptist
church there still bear his name. Also, Saint
Tide Hollow was named for him.
O'Dell's book "Over The Misty Blue
Hills" a history of Cocke
County, mentions Tide Holt. Tidance
was called 'Tidings' Holt in most
census. He married twice...first to
Nancy Boleypaw, 21 Sept 1843,
believed a younger sister to Mary Boleypaw,
Wyatt Holt's second wife. Tide and
Nancy had eight children. Nancy died
before 1875. Tidance then married Martha
C. Hale. They had two sons, William T. Holt
and John Holt.
date of Tidance's death has never been discovered.
However Cousin Julie
Smith discovered a Cocke
County Deed dated Jan 9,1886, proving Tidance and
Martha were alive at that time.
Therefore, Tidance Holt lived longer than was
Seny's second child was son, Jasper
N. Holt. He was born
in South Carolina, May 12, 1825. What
the initial "N" stood for has not been
found. Jasper married Elizabeth
Isenhour when he was age 21 and she
was age 16, born 31 Dec 1846. Elizabeth's
ancestor was Martin Eisenhower, a brother to
Peter, who was the ancestor of the 5-star General
and U. S. President Dwight D.
Eisenhower .. per Huntley's book, "Lutherans
in Greene County". Jasper and
Elizabeth had six children. In the Civil War
Jasper was a Confederate soldier. He
was ambushed and killed on his way home as he
walked along the Old Jonesborough Road. This was
in Greene County, Tennessee, June 1, 1864.
in North Carolina once again, Seny gave birth
to a daughter in 1826. She was named Sarah
Holt. On 29
September 1842, at age 16, Sarah married
John Gregg, who was about 30
years of age. His name was
at times spelled as Gragg. They
first lived in Greene County but
later moved to Cocke County, two houses
from Sarah's brother, Tidance Holt and
family. In the 1850 Census,
Sarah's father, Samuel Holt and
second wife, lived seven houses from her parents.
Sarah and John had eleven children. She died
btwn 1881 and 1900. Her husband, John, died
before 1880. Descendants say they were
buried in the Caney Branch Cemetery although no
thanks to George H. Gregg for the following
pertinent data on Sarah and John
Gregg's family: "Sarah
Holt Gregg was my great-great-grandmother.
She married John Gragg 29 September 1842.
John's birth date isn't clear because he had uncles
and cousins who were also named John. His
ancestry isn't clear either, but his
great-grandfather was Robert Gregg, who moved from
Augusta County, Virginia, ca
1788, into Greene County, Tennessee.
Altho there's quite a lot of information about
Robert, there's very little data about some
of his children and grandchildren who
remained in Greene County. Most of
this family's Cocke County records were lost
when the courthouse burned in 1876.
Gragg and Sarah Holt's children were:
1) Elizabeth b 1843, who wed Matthew
Boleypaw; 2) Martha J. b 1845;
3) HENRY DERRIS, born 1846 ... d 16 Jan 1929
... buried Knoxville's Old National
Cemetery. During the Civil War, Henry Gragg served
as a Union Private in Co. F, in the 4th
Tennessee Infantry, receiving a pension for his
War Service. He was disabled by
deafness due to measles. Around 1872, Henry
married Matilda OWENS, born 14 Feb 1841.
She died 5 May 1895 and buried at Ottinger
or Boyer Cemetery near Parrottsville in Cocke County.
4) Wm. A. was born 1848-49; wed Mary Hensley
; 5) Thomas W., b in 1851, married
Mary E. Toby, b 1851, daughter of
Jonas; 6) James A., b 1855;
7) Jonathan, born 1857, married Jane WELTY
19 Oct 1886;
8) Sarah, born 1860; 9)
Catherine, b 1861; 10) Adeline, born
15 September 1863, married Benj. Franklin
ALLISON; 11) John Wesly Gregg, born May 1865,
great-grandfather was Henry. During
the Civil War the Army spelled his name as
'Gregg'. He found it more convenient to keep
it that way in order to get his pension.
Interestingly, Robert's father, John, the original
Irish immigrant, spelled his name as 'Gregg'. The
family is Ulster Irish, having come from Scotland,
being descended from the MacGregor clan, which is,
in itself, another long story.
and Matilda lived in Newport, Cocke
County, Tennessee, where their children were
born. They were: 1) Andrew J., b
in 1873; 2) Derris, b ?, married
Lavada Gunter; 3) Hunley, b ?, married
Dorothy; 4) David, born ?; 5) Joseph,
born 4 May 1884, married Florence Wyrick; 6) Wm.
H., b&d in 1889; 7) Laura born 27
July 1872; 8) Sarah (Sally), b in
1875. The family says that Matilda was
a Cherokee." (End of the Quote)
Mr. Gregg can be reach by Email at firstname.lastname@example.org
puzzling why Samuel moved his family to North
Carolina again after Jasper's May 1825 birth in
South Carolina ... but that's what he did. His
family was again living at Shaws Creek at
time of Sarah's 1826 birth.
Because crops in South Carolina were harvested by
September, could it be there was no more work
there in wintertime? Was there another work
he could do in winter months at Shaws Creek?
Or, if no available work during wintertime, was
this the cheapest place for his family to live?
We know Samuel had family, neighbors and
church friends still living there tho his father
was living in Tennessee by early 1825.
A number of such questions might be solved IF the
birth month for Samuel's children were known.
were his reasons, within a period of two
years, Samuel Holt had moved his family back
into South Carolina. Son, Oliver
Holt, was born
there sometime in 1828. In Oliver's
18th year, he married on August 9,
1846, to Mary Ann Blazer, age
17. By that time Samuel Holt and
family were living in Tennessee. Oliver and Mary
Ann were married at Caney Branch,
Greene County, Tennessee.
Mary Ann was born to Samuel and Sarah Benner
Blazer, 28 February 1829. She and Oliver had seven
children. The years passed but their
teenage marriage didn't last and they
separated. Mary Ann and
their children moved to
Pulaski County, Arkansas. Oliver
remained in Greene County. They
divorced. Oliver died between 1881 and
1900. Mary Ann Blazer Holt died
April 1, 1887, at age 58. She's
buried in Little Bethel Cemetery, at Old
Warsaw, Pulaski County, Arkansas.
is thought SAMUEL Holt stayed in South
Carolina for a time after the birth of son,
Oliver in 1828 ... but he is not
there at time of the 1830 Census.
However,. we find a Samuel HALT listed in the
1830 Census of Buncombe County, North
Carolina. This was Wyatt
Holt's son with his name interpreted and
spelled incorrectly by the person who
indexed the original Census page. In
viewing the original page, his name was written
clearly as Holt. The ages for Samuel,
Tidance, Jasper and Oliver match
correctly. However ... once again Seny gave
an different age for herself. Daughter Sarah was
added in the 5-10 age column,
for the census was taken when she was nearer to age
5 than to age 4, as was the
practice. According to statement on
the last page, that census was completed in
November of 1830.
easy to see how this listing was overlooked
because of Seny's incorrect age and
the spelling error of Samuel's name as
HALT in the Index. Although
Sarah's age seemed to lead research astray,
there are enough checks and balances
which say this was indeed Samuel HOLT
(Actually, Ancestry's 1810 Census OnLine has Wyatt
Holt's name Indexed as Wiat HALT.)
column listing was balanced as
explained above. And by checking
Wyatt Holt's Census in 1820 ... we
find some of his same neighbors
then...were still there ten years
later, in 1830. And this Samuel Halt lived
right in the middle of these same neighbors
in 1830. Jonathan King and wife,
Mary Holt, (daughter of Wyatt, sister to
Samuel) were not living near Wyatt's former
neighbors, which says that although the
Kings bought Wyatt's property, they had not moved into
his home. So from the 1830 census, it
is clear Samuel Holt and wife, Seny, were
living in Wyatt's former house, perhaps as
renters. A good guess would be that
Samuel and Seny stayed here each time they
returned from South Carolina. With this
house available to them it gives insight into why Samuel
could easily move his family back there every
couple of years. Apparently he worked as a
migrant farmer going where the work was.
story passed down in Oliver's family through
the years about a U.S. Vice President who
was sworn in as President
wearing Oliver's trousers! This story
always came up at a family gathering but usually
no one could remember which
president the story pertained to altho they
knew it was either...Lincoln, Garfield or McKinley!
Although this was a 'treasured
memory' in our family's history, no one ever
wrote it down or checked to see the
Vice President's name during Oliver's life-time.
The story goes that when the president was
assassinated, the vice president wrote to Oliver
asking to borrow his trousers ... because he had
climbed over a fence and tore his. He remembered
Oliver Holt bought a matching suit and
since they were the same size, a
solution would be to borrow Oliver's
trousers to wear when he would be sworn in as
was said by 'later descendants' that
this letter was kept in a trunk stored in an
Aunt's barn. However, the barn
later burned and the letter was lost!
For many years this story remained a
'treasured memory' for the family. No
one ever challenged it for there was no
reason to.....it was believed true. Then, many
years later, a family member began genealogy
research and this story was the first thing
checked to have proof for the family books.
Well...It turned out that Oliver Holt lived during
the time of Abraham Lincoln, so it
took only seconds to check and find
Lincoln's Vice President was none other than
Greeneville, Tennessee's proud son Andrew Johnson!
This town was in the same county where Oliver Holt
lived at Caney Branch. Low and behold ...
ole Andrew had been a 'tailor'
at Greeneville! Well, from there
it didn't take but a few seconds to realize this
could only have been a bedtime story for
Oliver's children! Zip Zap! the treasured
memory became as a punctured balloon!
All of it's air just vanished and was suddenly
gone! With Johnson being a tailor, he
likely had the best wardrobe of suits than
any politician in the nation's capital. Not
only that... he was sworn in as President the
next day after Lincoln's
assassination! 'No way' could a letter
go to Tennessee and back to D.C. in one day
by horseback! IF there was any truth to
this story at all, it may have been that Oliver
Holt owned a suit tailored by Andrew Johnson, the
same as a lot of other men in Greene County.
When results of this fact-finding mission was
told to the family, it was met with
amazement and shock!
we now know about ole Oliver Holt ... is that he
was a mighty good storyteller to have concocted
this tale so very well that his children believed
it until they died! If he ever told
them different, we don't know, for they
continued telling it as truth to their children,
too. A funny thing about old family
stories...is that often no one bothers to research
if it has any merit. However, sometimes it's
more fun to not know!
One thing for sure, Oliver had many laughs out of
Samuel and family were in Buncombe County at
time of 1830 Census. Yet ... they were
again back in South Carolina,
when their daughter, Delilah
Holt, was born ca 1831.
She was nick-named Dilla. On March 25,
1848, at age 17, Delilah married John
A. Renn, at Caney Branch,
Tennessee. In September, 1861, Dilla was expecting
their fifth child, when her husband,
John, died. She remained a widow
for eight years. She then met and married
Wiley Bailey, August, 1869...and they moved
to Knox County where she had three more children. Delilah died
August of 1904. Her gravesite is
daughter was born in South Carolina,
in 1833-34. She was named Elizabeth
Holt. When she was age 17 or
18, Elizabeth married George Adam
D. Nease, on 19 August 1851, in
Caney Branch, Greene County, Tennessee.
George had a twin named John Syram Nease who
later married Dolly Ann Blazer, sister to Oliver
When George and Elizabeth moved
to Whitestown, Indiana, they
had six children. Four more children
were born in Whitestown.
Elizabeth died in 1876, on
March 21. She and George are both buried in
Boone County, Indiana, where they belonged to St.
Luke's Lutheran Church.
born 1838, in Greene County,
Tennessee. At time of the 1860 Census, Rufus
was single and still living at home with his
mother, Asenath. He
married Sarah Ann Marsh, on 2
January 1866. Sarah Ann was born ca 1850, in
Orange County, Virginia. By 1870, they
had two daughters. Rufus is listed as
head-of-house in the 1870 Census, yet it
was most likely the home
of his mother, Asenath,
for she was listed with his family.
Rufus Holt was not in the 1880
Tennessee Census but was in Lamar County,
Texas. His First Cousins,
Ben Franklin Holt and brother Andrew M. Holt,
sons of his Uncle Jacob Holt, were living in
Fannin County, Texas, at Honey
Grove Community by the 1870 census.
Likely word came from the Cousins that
N. E. Texas was a good place to live, for
Rufus and family were there by 1880,
where four more children were born to them.
Rufus Holt may have died before 1900. His
youngest child was living with his oldest
child, Clara, and her husband
in the 1900 Census. Sarah Ann moved
to Tuttle Town, in Grady County,
Oklahoma, and was listed as a Widow in 1920
Census. She died before 1930 census and
was buried in Tuttle Town.
is not known if Samuel Holt moved his family
to Tennessee before 1837 or 1838... but, a court
record dated February 18,1839, in Greene
Co., verifies they were living there.
On May 15, 1839, a daughter was born to
Samuel and Seny in Greene County named Mary
Adeline Holt. At age 16, she
married Christopher Blazer
in Greene County, on 20 May 1855.
Christopher's sister was the wife of
Mary's brother, Oliver.
Children of the two couples were double-cousins
to each other. Blazer
families of Greene and Cocke County's
belonged to St. James Lutheran Church
at Caney Branch, where services were held in the German
language. Mary Adeline gave birth to eight
children. Christopher died April
9, 1900. On 13 Feb 1903, Mary Adeline Holt Blazer
died. She and Chris are buried in Oven
Creek Cemetery, in Cocke County, Tennessee.
last child of Samuel and
Seny was named Bradley
Holt, born 8 October 1841. Bradley
married Hannah Nease,
August 20, 1857. His age varied in each of his own
census, but using his mother's census data, we
know he was age 9 in 1850. If...the
Census Taker got it correct, this means he married
Hannah when he was about age 16. They had two
children, then...divorced Feb 14, 1867.
He then married Nancy A. Jones,
Feb 21,1867. Nancy was born in March,
1844. Bradley and Nancy
had six children. Bradley and family lived in
Greene County, Tennessee. He died 21
May 1879, in Hamblen County, Tennessee, and was
buried in the Macedonia Cemetery. Nancy
lived until 21 May 1911.
1840 U.S. Census has Samuel's last name,
Holt, written in the Tennessee fashion of that
time, and is hard to read. The
census page gives no clear district where he
lived, but in the page
border is listed Civil District's 1, 2, 3, 5, 9,
10 and 13. In 1850,
these same neighbors were in
District 9 ... so if district
lines did not change after 1840, then
Samuel's family were living in District 9 in 1840.
a document recorded in Greene County,
Samuel Holt was a sharecropper on the Plantation
of Thomas Jones. In this document he
mentions he lived on a Plantation where
he was selling his corn crop to his
brother, Jacob Holt, August 1841.
One of Samuel's neighbor's was named Wyatt Jones.
Three houses the other direction was Ann Jones who
was an older woman, (and probably the widow
of Thomas Jones).
marriage record has been found for Samuel Holt and
Asenath in North or South Carolina.
SAMUEL HOLT'S SECOND FAMILY
also is no record when Samuel Holt and Mary
Skiles married and very little has been found
about the Skiles family history. Perhaps a
descendant will share names of Polly's
siblings with this site. Samuel,
Polly and their children were in Pickens
County, South Carolina, at time
of the 1850 U. S. Census. Samuel's
brother, James Holt and family lived next door.
These two Holt brothers lived near to each
other throughout their lives. Sam was
born 1802 in Rowan County, N.C. and Polly
...per a daughter's death record ... was born in
the Tennessee Sequatchie Valley ca 1816-17, which
is southwest of Cocke County.
and Polly had eight
children. Their first child was
Holt, b ca 1838, in Cocke
County, Tennessee. It seems that Mary
remained single. Her sister, Lucretia,
at young age of 12, was living with her in
1870. Their mother, Polly,
has not been located in 1870. but with Mary
taking care of her younger sister, this may be an
indication that their father had passed away.
Holt, was born in Cocke County, June
of 1840. He married Amanda J.
Bailey in February of 1868. They
raised their family of 5 children in
Washington County, Tennessee.
and Polly had a son named JESSE
HOLT, born ca 1844. His parents 1850
census lists his birth as being in Tennessee.
But their 1860 census lists his birthplace as
South Carolina. They moved around so much in
his young years, they apparently forgot
where he was born. Jesse has not been found in a
census since 1860. However, this may be due
to him using a middle name...since several other
Holt's were named Jesse.
is a James Holt
listed in the 1870 and 1880 Cocke County
Census, who was born ca 1842 in
Tennessee. This man lived among
families who were married to one of our Holt's or
kin to them...clearly he was not of
the Bybee Holt clan. It's
thought his full name might have been
Jesse James Holt, a name used in
Wyatt Holt's family. Nancy _?_, born ca 1843,
was the wife of this James Holt.
They had 11 children: Martha, James,
Nancy, William, Joseph, Roenna,
Lula (Ida?) Mary E. and twin, Emma, LIzzie
and Robert Holt. This is only a theory
... for no proof has been found.
Possibly this James Holt was the same man as
Samuel and Polly's son, Jesse?
However, to be clear ... until
proof or other clues are uncovered, this
remains a theory.
Sam and Polly's
census did not always agree with their children's
census after they were adults.
Daughter, Martha Jane Holt,
b 1845-46 was listed born in Georgia in
her parents 1850 census.
But their 1860 census lists her birth in South
Carolina; after marriage the 1880 census
lists her birth in Tennessee; in 1900,
the census lists her birth in North Carolina.
Therefore...with her census data not consistent,
we cannot be positive where she was born.
She was called Jane. She married
Oliver Smith in 1868-69. They
resided in Cocke County and six
children were born to them there. In 1880,
Jane's Mother, Polly Holt, age 68, was
living with her and Oliver...so it is clear that
Samuel Holt had died. This was the last
Polly was found in a census. By
1900, Jane and Oliver had migrated to
Wright County, Missouri, living in
Pleasant Valley Township, and had been
married for 32 years. Two
children were born to them in Missouri. By
1910, daughter Lavina had been married for
3 years to Will Anderson. They lived
in Jasper County, Missouri, in Mineral
Twp. Jane's husband, Oliver Smith, age 71, lived
with the Andersons, which is a good indication
that Martha Jane Holt Smith had died after
1900 and before 1910. Oliver
was deceased before 1920.
to Samuel's 1850 Census, daughter, Emma
Anne Holt, was born ca 1847, in Georgia.
His 1860 census gives (Pickens County), South
Carolina as her birthplace in 1848.
This was Emma's last census with her family.
Who did Emma Anne marry?
Ara Holt was born
June 1850 in Georgia, per information in her
father's census. In 1860, his census gives
Ara's birthplace as being Pickens County, South
Carolina. Ara, also called Aary,
per 1870 census, was newlywed to James A.
Keller and living in Cocke County,
Tennessee. Their name was written as Kelly...both
Ara and James were age 20. They lived
next door to her sisters...Mary, 29 and Lucretia,
age 12. This census, with the 1910 and 1920
census, confirm Ara's birth in South
Carolina. In 1900 Ara stated she
had 14 children, 12 living ... and had been
married for 30 years. Ara and James
lived to be into their 70's. Her
death in 1928, is recorded in Cocke County. James
died in 1930. Both are buried in Forest Hills
daughter Louisa Holt, was
born 1853, Pickens County, South Carolina.
Who did Louisa marry? What happened to her?
Lucretia Holt, was
born ca 1856, in Pickens County, South
Carolina ... per her father's census. The
1860-1870 Census gave her birthplace as being
in South Carolina. Lucretia was
listed in 1870 with her sister, Mary, age
29, in Cocke County. What
happened to her? That's been the question...until
March of 2006!
Richard Holt found a Lucresia
Southerland, born 1859 in South
Carolina, living in Cocke County with her husband,
Lafayette, in 1880 census. The
only difference was the spelling of
her name by the Census Taker, which was obviously
an error. It seems they married ca 1873.
With his innate talent for genealogy research, Richard
shares this amazing discovery ... although
no single document contains all
of this information ... yet all evidences
found point to this lady being
Lucretia Holt...daughter of Samuel and Polly.
William Milburn and James A. were the
children at home with Lucretia and Lafayette
in 1880. The evidences begin with Louiza,
for Lucretia had a sister, Louisa, who was
three years older. While we believe
Lucretia's brother was named Jesse James
Holt ... possibly her 2nd son was named after him.
Richard's ability to unravel the often mis-
spelled Census Index ... led him to find
Fail and 'Cressie' Sutherland
in 1900 Cocke County Census, District 6.
Cressie followed the 'ole rule' when women
didn't offer their true age, for she
made herself younger in this census. Other
children born before 1900:Van, Joseph Jerome,
Carl, Mary Erie and Carrie. Although
different spellings for the name Lucretia are used
in each Census, without a doubt, Cressie and other
nicknames were the same person as Loucresia in
1870. Lafayette and
Lucretia's children are in the Census after
1900 with their families...some moved to
Missouri. This family connects to the family
of Elijah Gregg and his wife Mary J. Sane. Elijah
was a son of Samuel Gregg and
wife, Mahala Holt, daughter of Wyatt Holt
and Mary 'Polly' Boleypaw.
Southerland was a widow before the 1910
Census. She died in 1918. On her
gravestone her name is Lou Creasy. Evidences
as these help prove this was Lucretia Holt,
daughter of Samuel and Polly. Lucretia Holt Southerland
is buried in the Forest Hills Cemetery in Cocke
County. Her gravestone dates: 30 May 1854 to
17 October 1918. Lucretia was buried beside her husband, Lafayette
Southerland. His gravestone dates are 4
April 1844 to 18 July 1907,
although the state records list his death in
updates on Lucretia. Turns out a Researcher
submitted data on the LDS website we had not seen.
It shows Mary E. Southerland with her husband
(after 1900) and, that her mother was
.... Lou Creasy HOLT. Unfortunately, no Submitter
name is given. This confirms
descendants knew her maiden name to be HOLT.
Lucretia HOLT Southerland was a granddaughter of
Many thanks to Cousin Richard Holt for
sharing this discovery, so Lucretia's family
is listed in our family history.
Their Final Days
"Seny" Holt died due to paralysis,
March of 1880, at age 90. In the
1870 Census, she was listed with son,
Rufus Holt and family in Greene County, altho they
may have been living with her. Whether she
moved in with one of her other children after
Rufus moved to Texas, or if someone moved in with
her, is not known. Her
youngest son, Bradley, also lived in
Greene County but he died in May of
1879. She lived only 10 months
after his death. Whether losing
two sons or old age brought on a stroke
is not known. Seny had a long life for a
woman living in those days. She was
without a husband for 38-39 years
after the birth of her last child.
From that time raising the children alone could
not have been easy for her. Her four
youngest children were still living with her in
1850. Since she died in Cocke County, it is
surmised that Seny was then living with son,
Tidance Holt, or one of her daughters,
Sarah Gregg or Mary A. Blazer, all
residents of Cocke County.
Asenath was a member of Flag Branch
Baptist Church. Altho her grave has
not been located, she was likely
buried in the same Caney Branch Cemetery
where Jesse Holt and wife Elizabeth were
buried. Wyatt Holt is believed to be buried there
1850, Samuel Holt was listed in Pickens County,
South Carolina Census with his second family.
By 1860, they had moved into Cocke County
County, Tennessee. Samuel and Polly
have not been found in the 1870 Census.
However...Polly was listed in the
1880 Cocke County Census living with their
daughter, Martha and husband, Oliver
Smith. If Samuel had died by 1870 where
was Polly? Does anyone know death
dates for Samuel and Polly and where they were