The paternal grandfather of our subject, was Jacob JOHNSON, who immigrated to Tennessee from Millerstown, Md., soon after the close of the Revolutionary war, and settled near Eden Ridge,within five miles of Kingsport, Sullivan County. He was a farmer by vocation, and alsb kept a tavern. He lived there until his death, which occurred in about 1854. He was married to Elizabeth CHURCH, who was a native of Maryland, being born near Hagerstown. She died in 1848. To the grandparents six children were horn, of which our subject’s father was the fourth child. Thomas C.,. the father, was born in Sullivan County on June 5, 1806 and was reared on the farm and acquired a practical education in the schools of the neighborhood.
He removed to Carter County in 1834 with Dr. Joseph POWEL, Sr., with whom he made his home and studied medicine, but never practiced. He was a farmer by vocation, and was quite a prominent man in the county, and served a number of Years as deputy sheriff and coroner, and was lieutenant colonel of militia, and also major and adjutant under Col. Daniel STOVER. He was a member of Deshield Lodge No. 238, F. & A. M., but was initiated in Kennedy Lodge of that order. He was an industrious and enterprising citizen, and always took an active part in public affairs. He was industrious and successful, and accumulated a good competency. He died January 5, 1879.
The maternal great-grandfather of our subject was Samuel TIPTON, who was the eldest son of Col. John TIPTON, who fought in the battle of Franklin with Gen. John SEVIER. Col. John TIPTON immigrated to Tennessee from the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, and settled in what is now Carter County during the Revolutionary war. He was the grandfather of Gen. Jacob TIPTON, for whom Tipton County, Tenn., was named. Abraham TIPTON, the grandfather of our subject, was the son of Samuel TIPTON, and was named for Col. Abraham TIPTON, who was killed in Bear Grass, Ky., during the Revolutionary war by Indians. He was born in Carter County August 27, 1794, and married Martha LACY of Carter County. He served as sheriff and justice of the peace of Carter County for a number of years, being elected sheriff in 1836, the first one after the adoption of the new constitution, He was elected to the State Senate in 1849. He was also adjutant and major of militia. He died July 3, 1868. To this union two children were born, of which our subject’s mother was the second. Nancy J., the mother, was born in Elizabethton on November 7, 1818.
The parents of our subject were married January 8, 1887, and to them have been born nine children, six of whom are living. The children are as follows: Martha B., born May 28, 1838, now Mrs. HUFF, of Doyle Station, White County, Tenn.; Saraphenla, born December 30, 1840, married John T. KING, of King’s Springs, in Carter County, and died November 2, 1884; Anna M., born December 13, 1843, now Mrs. D. N. REECE, and living at Carter Depot, Carter County; Mary C., born September 6, 1847, now Mrs. W.T. RUCHER, of Doyle Station; Ada L., born January 3.1850, married Hiram BOWMAN, of Johnson County, and died December 8, 1877; A. T., born May 28, 1853; Eugene, born November 7, 1859, died same day; Robert T.,born December 20,1860; William, born February 25, 1858, A. T., is a resident of Elizabethton. William is United States mail agent on the East Tennessee, Virginia & Georgia Railway, between Bristol and Chattanooga. He was married on April 6, 1887, to Miss Ella BRIDEWELL, of Knoxville, and is also a resident of Elizabethton.
Robert T., the subject, is depot and express agent and telegraph operator at Elizabethton, and is also engaged in merchandising at that point, being senior member of the firm of Johnson & Waters. He was married September 6, 1868, to Josie B. HYDER, youngest daughter of Elder J. H. HYDER. To this union three children have been born. The mother of Mrs. R. T. JOHNSON is a sister to Andrew FLETCHER, who was Secretary of State under Gov. BROWNLOW’s administration.
Transcribed by Kris L. Martin
Source: Goodspeed Publishing Co. History of Tennessee from the Earliest Time to the Present: Together with an Historical and a Biographical Sketch of from Twenty-Five to Thirty Counties of East Tennessee. Chicago: Goodspeed, 1887.