WALTER S. BEARDEN, a prominent attorney of Shelbyville, was born in Lincoln County, Tenn., January 10, 1843, being one of two children (twins) born to the marriage of Dr. B. F. BEARDEN and Susan M. BLAKE. The father was a native of South Carolina, but lived and died in Lincoln County, Tenn. He was a man of great learning and breadth, and was eminent in the profession of medicine. He died in 1870 and five years afterward the mother died.
He received a good early education and at the age of fifteen began teaching as an assistant in an academy. He entered the Emory and Henry College of Virginia and was in that school when the war broke out. He then enlisted in Company E, Forty-first Tennessee as second lieutenant, and remained in the service throughout the war. He was elected second lieutenant of the company upon its second organization, and commanded the company the last year of the war., He received three wounds, on e of which was serious. Returning from the service he began the study of law, and in 1866 began the practice of his profession in Shelbyville, where he has made himself a leading member of the bar. He has never aspired to political honor till this year (1886), when he was announced as candidate for chancellor of his district.
He was married, February 17, 1874, to Maggie C. WHITESIDE, daughter of Col. T. C. WHITESIDE. He has a family of four children by this marriage. Politically, he was reared a Whig, but is now a Democrat. Himself and wife are members of the Presbyterian Church. He is a Knight Templar Mason and at one time was the youngest High Priest in Royal Arch Masonry of the State. As a citizen he is well known and highly respected.
Transcribed by Kathryn Hopkins
Source: 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.