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Re: Descendants of Joseph B. Gartrell and "Gartrell House"- Georgia
Posted by: Robert Cummings (ID *****8142) Date: April 28, 2009 at 12:34:42
In Reply to: Re: Descendants of Joseph B. Gartrell and "Gartrell House"- Georgia by Mary Air of 523

Hi Mary. Gee, it's been a long time! The Gartrell house in Tignall is likely the house that Louisa Gartrell (born in 1825) remembers fondly in her diary "…in summer I often lingered in bed… but in winter was up early to the gay, busy, bustling scenes of everyday-life. Father's fire-side has oft resounded with the merry laughs, the appalling squalls, or punishable brawls of the children, three hours before the announcing of breakfast." But as the family grew (eleven children in all) and prospered, perhaps they outgrew this place that is referred to as a "Georgian-type cottage," and built a larger home more befitting Joseph Gartrell's status as one of the wealthiest men in Wilkes County. I am speculating.

Samuel Lewis's 1947 thesis about Lucius Gartrell (Kimberly Gartrell's message 478 in this forum) might say differently (I've never seen it), but I suspect that the Tignall house is associated with Lucius Gartrell because he is the best known member of the family. He may have lived in the house as a child, but I doubt if Lucius lived in the house as an adult. Referring again to Louisa's diary, she describes her and brother Lucius' conversion at a Methodist camp meeting and 1838 when Lucius was 17 years old: "…after the eleven o'clock sermon on the morning of which I have been speaking, his [Lucius'] soul was converted and he praised God aloud, and exhorted his relations and friends that stood around him to live in the service of their Creator. I was much rejoiced at the conversion of my brother hoping he would prove an aid to me. Events were such that in a few months he was sent from home to College, and since that time I have enjoyed but little of his society as he married before finishing his College course." It doesn't sound like Lucius was around the old homestead much from around the age of 18.

I believe that the old Gartrell estate--Mt. Sylvan plantation--was inherited and divvied up among the three youngest sons: Joseph B. and Frank (who died in 1908 and 1912, respectively), and Theodore. However, Theodore moved to Baldwin County after the war and died young at the age of 38 in 1880, so he was out of the picture. Frank and Joseph lived out their days as bachelor farmers on or near the old homestead, but whether they actually lived in the house that was moved to Tingall, I couldn't say. Joseph B. is buried in the Gartrell Cemetery along with the graves of his parents and two other unmarked graves. The Wilkes County Cemetery website indicates that the "Gartrell Cemetery is located on Kemp Creek on G. O. Holliday's land" and the "Holliday Cemetery is on Frank Gartrell's land." This might have been the result of a land-swap between the Hollidays and Gartrells, who were next-door neighbors.

Best regards, Bob Cummings

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