The following, as it was submitted to the Historical Society of St. Clair County, Alabama
On February 15, 1822, pioneer and early settler, Samuel Gordon, entered by purchase the first land in Trout Creek Community of St. Clair County, that would later become a part of Ragland, Alabama. The grant (certficate #2748) was made to Samuel Gordon, Senior, dated May 4, 1824 and was signed by President James Monroe. This eighty acres of land was located in Section 8, Township 15, Range 5 and began at what is now that intersection of Railroad Avenue and Main Street. On September 20, 1852, Samuel claimed 80 more acres for his service in the War of 1812.
Samuel Gordon, born October 10, 1769 in North Carolina, was the son of a Scotsman who had come to America around 1750 as a lad and settled in Transylvania (Spottsylvania Co., Virginia, and later moved to western North Carolina. His father's name was also Samuel, herein referred to as "1" for identification, and his mother's name was Barbara Cameron (family tradition). His mother died when he was quite young in Bean Valley Station, North Carolina (now eastern Tennessee), while his father was looking for land for them in Kentucky. Samuel moved with his father, three brothers and two sisters; Evander, Robert, David, Elizabeth and Barbara to Woodford County, Kentucky, and later to Madison County, Kentucky. Samuel "1" is buried at Brick Church in Giles County, Tennessee.
On November 10, 1790, Samuel married Rachel Herron. Their license is on record in the Madison County Courthouse in Richmond, Kentucky. Rachel was born January 10, 1770 in North Carolina to Francis and Mary Herron. She had moved to Kentucky with her mother and four brothers between 1787 and 1789. Her father, Francis Herron, died in 1780 and is buried in the Steele Creek Presbyterian Church Cemetery in Mecklenburg Co., North Carolina. Her grandparents were James and Margaret Herron of Cumberland County, PA. Her brothers; James, Thomas, John and Andrew later moved to Williamson County, Tennessee.
In 1806, Samuel and Rachel Gordon moved to Williamson County, Tennessee, 12 miles west of Franklin in the Spring Hill area, later a part of Maury County, Tennessee. As part of the Tennessee militia in 1813-1814, Samuel and three of his sons; Samuel, Francis and David volunteered for duty in the Creek Indian campaign, and in 1814-1815 they served in the Battle of New Orleans in the War of 1812. Samuel Gordon (referred to as "Sr." in "Tenneseans in the War of 1812") served as a Private under Colonel Robert H. Dryer and Captain Owen's Regiment, Tennessee Volunteer Mounted Gunmen. His sons also served as privates under Colonel Robert H. Dryer and Captain Glenn Owen's Regiment, Tennessee Volunteer Mounted Gunmen. Samuel as a Sergeant, also served under Kavanaugh; Francis, also as a Sergeant; and David as a Private. Both Samuel and Francis had served as Privates in Captain Archibald McKenny's Company of Calvary. In 1822, after things had settled down somewhat from the Indian conflict, Samuel and Rachel moved to the newly formed State of Alabama to Trout Creek where they would live thereafter.
Samuel and Rachel had eleven children of which the first eight were born in Kentucky and the last three born in Tennessee.
Five of Samuel and Rachel's sons; Samuel, Francis, David, James and Andrew moved their families to the Ash Creek Community, in Lowndes County, Alabama after receiving land grants by the US Government from 1826 to 1836. There, Francis founded the town of Gordonville. David donated land for the Ash Creek Baptist Church and also had land grants in Autauga County.
Samuel died on July 16, 1853 at the age of 83. Rachel died on September 9, 1856 at the age of 86. Samuel and Rachel Gordon are both buried on what was then a corner of their garden on their homestead at Ragland, St. Clair County, Alabama. Their graves are located on Hwy 144 on Main Street on the eastern most side of town next to the Ragland Medical Clinic in a raised area about a foot high and approximately twelve feet square. In a letter written by James Reed, grandson of Samuel and Rachel Gordon, and dated around 1919, he states that they have nice markers on their graves. But the graves, at the time of this writing, are unmarked and the location of their original marble markers which were removed around the time of the construction of the nearby highway are questionable. However, plans to restore Samuel and Rachel's graves and markers are currently underway by family descendants.
The restoral of the graves was completed in the summer of 1999 and some of the photos taken during the work, along with some of the people involved, can be viewed by clicking here.
It's the finished product of many, many hours of dedication and hard work by not only a great friend, but also someone I'm proud to be able to call my cousin, Patrick Morris Gordon, who was also the architect for the graves that we all hope will last for a VERY long time to come. Pat and I want to thank all of the great cousins that donated the money it took, and without which, this project would never have materialized.
Ya'll are the greatest!!!!
Today, family connections are large. Represented throughout the United States and the southeast particularly in Alabama, Georgia, the Carolina's, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia. Though gone but not forgotten, Samuel and Rachel and those that came before them and after them have given us a rich and proud heritage that will be enjoyed and forever remembered by their future generations.
Sources: Couthouse records from Jefferson County, Birmingham, Alabama; Madison County, Richmond, Kentucky and St. Clair County, Ashville, Alabama; census records; "History of Alabama and Dictionary of Alabama Biography" by Thomas McAdory Owen; "Tennesseans in the War of 1812" by Bryon and Samuel Sisler; War of 1812 Pentioners; "Early St. Clair County, Alabama Records" compiled by Mrs. C. P. Mcguire, Sr.; "Our Many Cousins" by Mary P. Bacon; "From Trout Creek to Ragland" by Rubye Hall Edge Sisson; "Collirene, Queen of the Hills" by Mrs. Bryant Traylor and Rosa Lyon; family bibles; letters and papers from many, including Dr. Samuel Annanias Gordon, and Janice (Joy) Herron.
Submitted by: Fred D. Gordon of Texas, 3rd great grandson of Samuel and Rachel Gordon (member of "The House of Gordon", "Son's of the American Revolution" and "Son's of Confederate Veterans"), and Patrick Morris Gordon of Alabama, 4th great grandson of Samuel and Rachel Gordon.
This is the story, as we know it, of Samuel Gordon & his wife, Rachel Herron
The graves of Samuel and Rachel after the county of St. Clair Alabama finished with them.
Now, here's the fabulous man, that without whom this project would never have gotten off the ground,
Patrick Morris Gordon
with his beautiful wife, Quida, son Matthew and daughter, Rebecca.