Building The Nathan Bedford Forrest Memorial

Nell Morisette
NewsTribune Special Columnist

Good morning! Even though it's cold and spitting snow, it's still a good morning. I know it's sad for those who have recently lost loved ones, our lives go on, and on days like this, look outside at God's creation, I enjoy feeding and watching the birds and squirrels.
Now for our history:

Nathan Bedford Forrest Memorial

In the fall of 1931, an unidentified man and the monument in memory of Nathan B. Forrest arrived by rail at the Eva Depot from Calhoon, Georgia. This man stayed at the Holland Hotel in Eva about two weeks until the job or erecting the monument was completed.

Albert Cherry and Oscar Pafford were at the depot when the train arrived. The man said he was looking for someone to help set the three-piece monument, which consisted of the base, the middle section, and the shaft.

Mr. Cherry and Mr. Pafford contracted the job for $500. The monument was rolled off the train at the depot. Mr. Cherry went to Dickson, Tennessee and rented a truck. When the base was loaded onto the truck, it squatted all the way down on the frame. This plan not working, Mr. Cherry and Mr. Pafford cut and made a wagon, wheels and all, out of black gum trees. The bas of the monument was then loaded onto the wagon and pulled by the truck to the bottom of Pilot Knob. The truck could not pull it up the hill.

A this time Mr. Bob Farmer was the road commissioner, and he told Mr. Cherry that they had only one dozer, which was in use during the day, but they could use it at night to pull the load. After work Mr. Carshfell Holland hooked the dozer to the wagon, and the bas was pulled up the hill. The middle section, being somewhat lighter, was pulled up the truck the next day. The night the dozer was brought back, the shaft was pulled up.

When all the pieces were on top of the hill, ready to set into place, the man from Georgia hired some young men to help. They were Ernie Cherry, David B. Pafford, Ben B. Holland, Addilea Hollingsworth, and Onas (Bigen) Sanderfur. These young men were paid 25 cents per hour. An "A-Frame" was built, and cables were tied to trees with two winches on each side. Leather straps were put under the timber with long bolts to tighten the shaft to lift and set on the second piece. The bas was set on lead to keep water out. Between the base and the first piece, the first and shaft, and one-inch strip of lead was laid around the edge to seal out water also.

Ernie Cherry placed a new Indian Head Penny heads-up on the base before the second piece was set into place. This information was revealed to me by mr. Ernie Cherry on October 20, 1993. Mr. Cherry was 84 years old and the only one living at the time who helped in the erection of the monument in memory of Nathan Bedford Forrest.
Mr. Cherry died in 1995

Thought for the Week:

Remember to forgive, then remember to forget.


If you have suggestions and/ or additions for these pages, please feel free to write County Host

Brian Nichols

Return to Newspaper Column Index
Return to Benton County Genealogy page


Server space for the TNGenWeb Project is provided through the generosity of US Internet.

The TNGenWeb Project makes no claims or estimates of the validity of the information submitted and reminds you that each new piece of information must be researched and proved, or disproved by the weight of evidence.

You are welcome to copy information found on the Benton County TNGenWeb site for personal use, and share information with other researchers or genealogical organizations, but this information may not be sold or used in a commercial project without expressed permission. All material submitted by individuals for inclusion in this site remains their property.

Copyright 1998 - 2002