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By Mrs. Lydia (W.W.S.) Myers

Cane Creek district comprises the neighborhoods of Wesley's Chapel, Hall's Valley, Watersville and a part of the Naomi neighborhood; extending from Chestnut Flat district on the north to the Chattooga county line on the south and from the top of Taylor's Ridge on the east to top of Peavine Ridge on the West being eighteen miles in length and five in width.

The district was thinly settled by whites on the removal of the Indians in 1838, a very few having come a few years prior to the removal of the Indians.

Some of the first white men to live in Cane Creek district were, Joshua Baker, David P. Allen, Henry Hovis, Henry Williams, Dummie Wilson, Rev. John Mcdonald, Marville Duncan, Benjamin Powell, George, Joseph and James Hall, William Clements, Thomas and George Wilson, Elisha Hendon, Bryant Rutledge, David Rutherford, David and Benjamin Jackson, William Myers, Alexander Calhoun, John Smith and Charles Coulter.

These men found the Indians enough advanced in civilization to be living in log cabins instead of wigwams or tee-pees and having small patches of cleared land on which they raised corn to make into "corn-akanid," one of their chief articles of diet. Some of the above mentioned men moved into houses vacated by Indians when the land came into possession of white men, and all went to work clearing land, building houses and putting into operation the resolute energy, thrift and other sterling qualities which characterized the pioneer settlers of our country.

Most of the first settlers of Cane Creek district have descendants living at present in this and adjoining sections, but so for the writer of this brief sketch has found only one man now living in the same yard in which stood an Indian house into which his father moved after purchasing land and moving here in 1837. This man is W.W.S. Myers, son of William Myers. Having procured the land, William Myers through an interpreter offered an Indian, Natchee," by name twenty silver dollars to give his possession of the house. The Indian refused this offer of money, but in a few days sent word if Mr. Myers would come and move him he could have the house. He did so and his son W.W.S. Myers is now living in the same yard and has in his possession five oak boards ten feet in length riven by Indians and used in the old Indian houses.

Two of the best known Indians living in Cain Creek district in 1837 were "Natchee" and "Tarteechee;" the Tarteechee pond being named for the latter and being on the old Indian trail from what is now Waterville to where LaFayette now stands.

It is very interesting indeed to us of the present day to hear - by tradition - the experiences of the early settlers. Some of them being most thrilling. Mrs. Margaret Powell, the eldest child of Alexander Calhoun, now living at Berryton and being in her eightyfourth year, remembers her mother taking herself and two younger children and slipping away from Indians after hearing their threats to take her life. And there are many other experiences not given here that should make us realize how much our ancestors had to endure and accomplish to get us the many things we have to enjoy at the present time. And how very ungrateful we would be to them and to the Giver of all good if we should fail to appreciate our very many blessings of the present day.

Then too we should remember that the Indians of our section were only dangerous when imbibing the "Fire Water", brought here by white men and that it was then as now the bane of all men, causing them to commit almost all the wrong deeds - I might say uncivilized acts, that our laws have to contend with; and that realizing this men should rise up and stamp this great evil from our land and make our civilization complete.

But to return to the past history of Cane Creek district. During our Civil War all of the above mentioned men of this section and some who came later, furnished from one to six sons to fight for the Confederacy. Alexander Calhoun, who also came here in 1837 had six sons in the Confederate army, three of whom died from wounds received during that four years struggle. Joseph Hall had five sons in service. James Hall, Alston Mills and William Myers four each and all gave to their country all their sons who were old enough to serve.

Cane Creek district also has the honor of having had a Revolutionary soldier live for several years and die in 1846 within it boundaries. This soldier was Edward Jackson, father of David Jackson and who at the present time has descendants to the fifth generation living near where he lived and died, the Myers and Martin families of Cane Creek district being some of his descendants. He was the father of twenty-two children. Some other men who came later than 1840 perhaps and helped to make the history of Cane Creek district were, Alston Mills, William Martin, Thomas Bryan, John M. and Hugh Smith, Eldridge Arnold, Alyhew Alexander, John Eli McDaniel, Jacob and William Green, Andrew Coffman, Clayton Smallwood and Pleasant Clark, James Mattox, for whom Mattox Gap is named, lived just barely across the northern line of Cane Creek district. Most of these men also had from to four sons in the Civil War.

This district has always been a very quiet section, noted for its love abiding citizenship and successful efforts for educational facilities; having sent out from its school very many men and women who have in the past and are at present successfully filling the various avocations of life. Some of its teachers have been, a Mr. Thomas, Charles Clements, Margaret Calhoun, Warren Benny, father of Judge Henry, Daniel P. Allen, father of C.P. Allen, Robert Blackwell, Erwin Grogan, uncle of L.C. Bryan, and Daniel Hall prior to the Civil War. Later came Mark Lansford, Miss Matilda Johnson, Capt. Jackson, Prof. Cheyne, W.F. Lowry, W.A. Rosser, Miss Pickle, Miss Tyner, and many others just as worthy of mention if we had space who have been teachers in the last few years of our history as a district of Walker county.

Already I have gone beyond the limit allowed me as I was only to write of the early settling of Cane Creek district. Not having been reared in this section it has been difficult for me to get names, etc, and I realize this is a very incomplete historical sketch. So if any names have been omitted who should have been mentioned please be assured the omission has not been intentional.

Note: This article copied from Walker County Messenger
by Benton L. Fletcher for William (Bill) Henry April 24, 1992
copy: Nita Myers Henry, step-great granddaughter of the author of this article.

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