W. C. ORR and family reside in the Eighth Civil District of Bedford County, Tenn., six miles north of Shelbyville, their home being located on the Middletown road.  The family consists of the father, above named, born February 14, 1829, and four children: William M., born November 6, 1854; David F., born June 6, 1859; Mary A., born March 18, 1862, and Minnie J., born August 3, 1866.  There are two vacancies in the family, caused by the death of the mother, Temperance Orr (nee Miller), born in August, 1830, and died May 14, 1876, and John Fain, the eldest child, who died in infancy.

W. C. Orr is of Scotch-Irish descent, and is a son of John and Penelope (Morgan) Orr, who were early settlers of Bedford County, being emigrants from the Carolinas.  Mr. Orr is a farmer, and served as magistrate of his district from 1870 to 1876.  His wife was a daughter of Nathaniel Miller, of Rutherford County, and married our subject in 1854.  She was a member of the Primitive Baptist Church.  Mr. Orr obtained a fair education in the common branches, and became an adept in penmanship, which he taught a few years.  In 1878 he began the study of medicine under Drs. Evans & Fite, of Shelbyville, and the same year attended lectures in the medical department of the Vanderbilt University, of Nashville, Tenn., and read and practiced at home until the fall of 1881, when he attended his second course in the same institution and took his degree at the close of the spring term of 1882.  Returning home he located with his father, where he has since practiced his chosen profession.

D. F. Orr, son of W. C. Orr, received a common school education, and attended the Shelbyville Normal and High School for three years, and graduated in 1879.  He afterward taught in the various public schools of Bedford and Rutherford Counties, and in the fall of 1884 attended his first course of lectures in the Vanderbilt University.  He returned home and taught school eight months, and then returned to college and graduated at the close of the session in 1886.  Mary A. Orr also received a good education, having attended the Shelbyville Normal and High School, the Soule Female College at Murfreesboro and the Winchester Normal College.  For several years she has been teaching in Bedford and Rutherford Counties.  Minnie J. Orr attended school two years at the Winchester Normal, and is now teaching her first school.

Transcribed by Kathryn Hopkins

Goodspeed Publishing Co. History of Tennessee from the Earliest Time to the Present: Together with an Historical and a Biographical Sketch of Maury, Williamson, Rutherford, Wilson, Bedford & Marshall Counties, Besides a Valuable Fund of Notes, Reminescences [Sic], Observations, Etc., Etc. Easley, S.C.: Southern Historical Press, 1988.

1 thought on “ORR, W.C.

  1. My great-grandfather’s mother, Mary Seely, graduated from Soule Female College in the 1800’s. I have a genuine diploma, printed on real sheepskin for her. To my knowledge, this was a college for Chickasaw Nation Native Americans. I have searched, sporadically, for information about this school. I have found very little. I believe, that someone, somewhere, would be interested to know that I have this diploma and the writing is still readable.

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