Hillsborough County, Florida


1823 - c1897

William Henderson Addison was born in 1823 in Bladen County, North Carolina, son of John & Ellen Addison. His parents moved to north Florida about 1825/26 settling near Tallahassee in Leon County. During the Seminole Indian Wars, William served as a Private in Captain Elijah Johnson's Company in 7th Regiment of Florida Militia commanded by Col. C. H. Davenport. He volunteered at Tallahassee on August 7, 1838 and was honorably discharged on September 7, 1838. His father was also a Private in this company. William aslo served in Captain Thomas M. Grigsby's Company of Florida Militia. He volunteered at Tallahassee on November 20, 1839 and was honorably discharged at Fort Grigsby on February 20, 1840.

On January 7, 1847, William H. Addison married Annie Townsend. She was born in 1826. Their children:

1. John Hugh Addison, born September 6, 1849; married Caledonia Hendry.

2. William Townsend Addison, born October 12, 1852; married in Polk County on December 30, 1877, Harriet (Godwin) Hilliard Collins, daughter of Solomon Godwin.

3. Henry Addison, born September 30, 1855.

4. Charles Addison, born 1858; died before 1870.

5. Cornelia Florida Addison, born May 24, 1860; died September 19, 1916; married 1st, Samuel Absalom Hart; married 2nd, David Minton Bloodworth on May 29, 1883.

6. Cordelia Addison, born 1862.

7. Victoria Addison, born June 17, 1865; married J. W. Galispie on October 4, 1881.

About 1848 the young couple, along with others of the Addison family, moved down into south Florida settling in the Manatee River section of Hillsborough County. William served two enlistments in Captain Henry S. Clark's Independent Company of Florida Volunteers which was composed mainly of friends and neighbors from the Manatee section. He was a Sergeant from July 23rd to August 28th, 1849. He enlisted again at Manatee on August 28th and was discharged on October 18, 1849.

On June 9, 1851, William applied for Bounty Land based on the Act of September 28, 1850. He received a warrant for 80 acres which he later sold. On March 31, 1853, William H. Addison registered the following mark and brand: underbit in one ear, undersquare in the other, brand (heart).

During the Third Seminole Indian War, William served as a Bugler in his father, Lt. John Addison's Company of Florida Mounted Volunteers. He was mustered in on January 16, 1856 and mustered out October 7, 1856. His brothers were members of this company also.

William was also a member of Captain John Parker's Company of Florida Mounted Volunteers. He was mustered in on October 7, 1856 and mustered out December 17, 1856 at Tampa, Florida.

In 1859 William was appointed a trustee of the 2nd district school district covering the area north of Manatee River. He also was a county commissioner during this time. William shipped many of his cattle from the Manatee area to Cuba, Key West and Nassau during the 1860's.

William H. Addison had a homestead about 2 1/2 miles north of Myacca Lake. Apparently he sold this place to his sister, Eliza Ann Townsend and her husband, David N. Townsend during the early 1860's for they sold it to Joel J. Addison on November 5, 1867 when it was referred to as the "William Addison place". This may have been when William moved to Polk County. He paid taxes on 40 acres in that county in 1869. On April 5, 1869, he served as a Petit Juror in Polk County but in the 1870 census, he was residing in Manatee County in Township 39 (Fort Ogden area). In 1880 he was living in precinct #11 (Bony area) probably in the Zolfo-Lemon Grove area.

On May 5, 1883, William bought 122.77 acres of land for $114.77 from the Internal Improvement Fund of the State of Florida. It was described as the SW 1/4 of NW 1/4 and NW 1/4 of SW 1/4 of Section 2 in T 34 S & R26 E and NE 1/4 of NE 1/4 of Section 4 in T 37 S & R 37 E. The former property is at Lemon Grove east of Wauchula and the latter property is east of Okeechobee in present day St. Lucie County.

On August 12, 1892, William applied for a pension. He gave his residence as Zolfo. He received $8 per month. The certificate was issued February 14, 1894. William apparently died between that time and May 16, 1898 when his widow applied for a widow's pension. She received $8 per month until her death in 1904. She was dropped from the pension rolls on August 1, 1904.

SOURCES: Census: 1850 Hillsborough, 1860-70-80-85 Manatee County; "John Addison" in South Florida Pioneers, Issue #4; William Addison's pension application; Annie Addison's pension application; military service records; Polk County marriages & tax records; Manatee County deeds, cattle shipments & Marks and Brands.
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