Georgia Genealogy Trails

"Where your Journey Begins"


Worth County people are the owners of many Bibles over one hundred years old, and some two hundred years old, with family history inscribed in them that is very interesting, showing many of the citizens to be descended from royalty, and from the greatest of Americans. "Blood will tell!" The humblest of our people in finance are often among the most refined with an innate culture of character which took generations of being well born to inculcate them. Ex-Governor Chase S. Osborn says of Worth County people, "I found them with an honesty and realness and grace that I had not seen elsewhere in all the earth. There is none of the mongrel mob among them that you find in places cheaply popular. Probably the records of these cherished old Bibles of many generations explains this fact. Below and elsewhere is given some of these Bible records:


The original progenitor of the Ford family in Georgia was John Ford, who came to this section in the early part of the eighteenth century, and became one of the pioneer settlers of Pindertown, then in Dooly County, now Worth. He obtained a grant of land and developed it into a productive plantation. He contributed materially to the civic and industrial advancement of this section, of which he was on of the earliest settlers, and in which he continued to reside until his death. He was buried at old Pindertown cemetery beside his wife, Nancy Graham Ford. Their graves are enclosed with a wall of brick, which are of unusual size, and in a perfect state of preservation, although he and his wife were buried there in eighteen hundred and thirty-nine, their deaths occurring just a month apart.

The brick enclosing their graves were probably brought up the Flint river from England, as they resemble the brick brought from that country and found in old cemeteries and buildings. John Ford came to this section from Elbert County, Georgia, and was the son of John and Mary Ford. Their children were: Jesse, John, Elizabeth, and Dorcas. Members of the family in this county have traced the line to the Revolutionary War, and have become members of the Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution on the record of John Ford, of Elbert County, originally of North Carolina. John and Nancy Graham Ford were the founders of one of the largest families in this county.

  • GARY GREEN FORD I, oldest son of John and Nancy Graham Ford, raised his family on the Ford's Mill plantation, first settled by his father over a hundred years ago, had a number of slaves and accumulated considerable property in land, cattle, etc., much of which went the way of everything else in the South. The original land granted to John Ford still belongs to his descendants. Gary Green I was born August 4, 1805, died September 11, 1859; married September 5, 1832 to Silvia Eason Tison, daughter of Joab Tison, born July 10, 1818, died February 20, 1863. They were the parents of twelve children, as follows:
    1. ROBERT GRAHAM FORD, JR.,born August 21, 1834, married Elizabeth Ross on November 17, 1857, and died August 6, 1875. Served in the army of the Confederacy; served as Justice of the Inferior Court of Worth County, January 21, 1865 to 1868. The children of this union were G. G. Ford, who married Laney Hobby; Silvia, who married Iverson Ridley; Robert G., 3rd, who married Kate Varner.
    2. ELIZABETH FORD, oldest daughter of G. G. and Silvia Tison Ford, was born August 17, 1837, married Wm. Whiddon on February 10, 1853. Their children were: Elias, married to Mattie Bass; Green, married to Lucy Culpepper; R. G., married to Lizzie Dunford; Silvia, married to Thomas Hobby; Beatrice, married to William F. Tanner, first, and to C. J. Houston, second; Mary, married to Joe Cox; Augustus, married to Mamie Keen.
    3. NANCY FORD, 2nd daughter of G. G. and Silvia Tison Ford, married to Moses Tison on December 18, 1861. Their children were: Emmett, married to Susie Bell; Lopez, married to Annie Dunn; Green, married to Miss Willis; Claude, unmarried; Minnie, married to Henry Hollingsworth; Billie, married to Miss Whiddon; Ben, died unmarried.
    4. DATY SMITH FORD, 3rd daughter of G. G. and Silvia Tison Ford, was born June 9, 1842, married J. M. C. Holamon, who was a lawyer, on November 17, 1857. Their children were Celem, married first to John Cary, and second to T. E. Crawford, who was one of the pioneer school teachers of the county; Anna, married to David Johnson first, and second to John Douglas; Alice, married W. W. Tison III and died a few months after; Rebekah, died unmarried; James Otis, married to Miss Winnie Woolard. They have one child, Mary; Billie, died unmarried.
    5. SARAH FORD, 4th daughter of G. G. and Silvia Tison Ford, was born August 1, 1844, married Francis Marion Tison, first, and Edward Barber, second. There were three children by the first marriage: Dr. W. W. Tison, of Perry, Florida, and Anna Luta, of Jonesboro, Georgia. Dr. Tison married Miss Hendley, of Florida, and Anna Luta married J. D. Lee, of Jonesboro. Little Frankie died in infancy.
    6. REBEKAH FORD, 5th daughter of G. G. and Silvia Tison Ford, born March 1, 1847, died unmarried.
    7. MARY FORD, 6th daughter of G. G. and Silvia Tison Ford, born April 21, 1849, died April 25, 1920; married March 15, 1866 to Jackson Jonathon Williams, born January 17, 1821, died January 13, 1896. Their children were: Ora, married to George W. Price; Jackie, married to W. H. Gregory; Parks Edward, married to Miss Pearl Parrish; Elzie J., married to Miss Lizzie Mangham; W. Custer, who died unmarried; Elizabeth, married to J. W. Warren; Ina, married to Neal S. Blizzard, and Preston F., unmarried.
    8. JOHN J. FORD, son of G. G. and Silvia Tison Ford, born March 18, 1851, died unmarried.
    9. ELZIE JONES FORD, son of G. G. and Silvia Tison Ford, born July 9, 1853, died unmarried.
    10. WILLIAM JACKSON FORD, son of G. G. and Silvia Tison Ford, was born March 12, 1855, died October 22, 1895, married March 2, 1886, to Rowena Hanes, of Jonesboro, Clayton County. Their children were: Preston Brooks, lawyer, unmarried; Laura Eileen, married to Newton D. Fiveash; William Jackson, died unmarried; Edward Jones, married to Miss Ruth Farmer, of Albany, Georgia; Lallie Mae, married to Hiram Caldwell Camp, of Coweta County.
    11. PRESTON SMITH BROOKS, son of G. G. Silvia Tison Ford, was born August 31, 1857, married to Miss Marie Paille, of Griffin, Georgia. Their children were Sarah May, married to Dr. McCall, of Temple, Texas, and William Jackson, died unmarried.
    12. JOAB TISON FORD, born August 5, 1859, died unmarried.

  • ROBERT GRAHAM FORD, SR. Robert G. Ford accumulated much property, and owned a number of slaves. For many years he was the keeper of the tavern at old Pindertown, where the stage changed horses on the old stage line from Milledgeville to Tallahassee. He later owned the large plantation known as the Hope Place. He served in the House of Representatives from Worth County in 1865 and 1866; was Justice of the Inferior Court of Worth County January 10, 1861 to February 1862; a delegate to the Secession Convention from Worth County. House of Representatives, Lee County, 1841; Justice Inferior Court, Lee County, May 20, 1839 to January 14, 1841. He was married to Daty Smith Tison, January 28, 1830; to Elizabeth Calhoun, December 27, 1846, and to Susan Hobby, March 4, 1858. He was born October 27, 1806, and his first wife, Daty Smith Tison, was born March 27, 1814. Their children were:
    1. Green J. Ford, born January 31, 1831, and died February 3, 1851, unmarried.
    2. Roxy Ann Ford, born January 5, 1833, died in infancy.
    3. Gary G. Ford, born July 31, 1838, died young.
    4. William G. Ford, born January 26, 1840, died July 22, 1840.
    5. Georgia Ann Ford, born March 11, 1842, married Dr. Theophilus William Tison, March 27, 1856 and their children were:
      • Mark Tison, who married Susan Deariso.
      • Daty Smith Tison, who married Jesse J. Forehand.
      • William Woodruff Tison III, who married Alice Holamon, first, and Sarah Van Houston, second.
      • Levisa Tison, who married George Howard.
      • Robert G. Tison, who married Maggie Tison.
      • Thomas Tison, who married Eulalia Dykes.
      • Theophilus Tison, who married Maud Boyd.
      • Lora Tison, who married Frank Coleman.
      • Francis Marion Tison, who married Pearl Perry.
      • Joseph Tison, who married Clara Belle Watson.
    6. John R. Ford, son of Robert G. Ford and Elizabeth Calhoun Ford, was born October 14, 1847, and married Callie Chestnut.
    7. Sarah J. Ford, daughter of Robert G. Ford and Susan Hobby Ford, was born Jun 30, 1862 and died unmarried.
    8. Robert L. Ford, son of Robert G. Ford and Susan Hobby Ford, was born June 26, 1864, and married Laura Corbitt.
    9. Nancy Esther Lee Ford, was born July 21, 1868, and died in infancy.

  • JOHN ALEXANDER FORD John A. Ford, third son of John and Nancy Graham Ford, was married to Matilda Jordon, November 30, 1837. Their children were:
    1. John Jefferson Ford, born September 17, 1838, and married to Sarah Sikes.
      • Mary Ford, married to James Lawson.
      • Charlotte Ford, married to John Houston.
      • Matilda Ford, married to Joe Bosch.
      • Elzie D. Ford, married to Willie Porter.
    2. James Harrison Ford, second son of John A. Ford and Matilda Jordan Ford, was born 0ctober 4, 1840, married to Sophronia Sullivan, and their children were as follows:
      • Alice Ford, married James E. Redmon.
      • Lola Ford, married to C. W. Graves, first, and to W. P. Knight, second.
      • Beulah Ford, married Jelks Warren.
      • Lamotte Ford, who studied law and located in Albany. In 1912 Lamotte was elected senator from the 10th district. He married a widow, a Mrs. Gallaher.
      • Eugene Ford, married Lula Hunter.
      • Clarence Ford, married to Rentie Belle in 1919.
    3. Hon. Gary Green Ford II, Gary Green Ford, third son of John Alexander and Matilda Jordan Ford, was born January 14, 1843, and married to Charlotte Elizabeth Sikes. Their children were:
      • Mollie Ford, who married Preston B. Powell.
      • Georgia Ford, who married George F. Sumner.
      • Sarah S. Ford, who married William S. Peeples.
      • Johnnie Ford, who died unmarried.
      • W. G. Ford, who married Berta Lee Jenkins.
      • Charlotte E. Ford, who died May 10, 1890.
    4. Gary Green Ford, married Miss Annie Heard of Blakely, who died March 20, 1906 after the death of his first wife. His third wife was Miss Lizzie Cooper, now married to Julian E. Glaze, of Sylvester. Hon. Gary Green Ford was a Confederate Soldier through four years of the Civil War. He returned from that conflict with the determination to rebuild and place his native land on a firm economic basis again. He accumulated a large estate, owning large tracts of land on which he raised cattle and sheep. He had about thirteen hundred head of sheep and several thousand head of cattle, as well as other interests of importance. He was President of the Sylvester Banking Co. and one of the largest stockholders. He ran successfully a sixty horse farm, yet with all this business he gave distinguished public service to the county. He was, when a young man, tax-collector for a number of years. He was a man of high social and political standing and served Worth County with marked distinction in the Georgia Legislature for three terms, and later as State Senator for one term. He always held inviolable the basic principles of the Democratic party and had been interested in political affairs fromm youth. He was a politician but had the genial spirit in the true sense. He lived at three homes of his making, the first one, where he lived for many years, and where his children were born (all by his first wife, Elizabeth Sikes Ford) was near Providence Church. He then moved to Sylvester and built the large two story home now owned by Preston Powell. Tiring of such a large house, he built the home now owned by his grandson, Carl Deariso. He was a strong character and the county is better by his having lived in it.
    5. Mary Jane Ford, first daugter of John A. and Matilda Jordan Ford, was born July 4, 1845, and died unmarried.
    6. Robert Taylor Ford, fourth son, was born August 17, 1847, married Sarah Sullivan and their children were as follows:
      • Walter Ford, married Sibbie Willis.
      • Gussie Ford, married to Tom Cadwell.
      • Jack Ford, married to Mattie Ryals.
      • Alma Ford, married to Emmett Perry.
      • Martha Ford, married to Tom W. Cravy.
      • Robert Ford, married a widow from Tampa.
    7. William Floyd Ford, fifth son, was born October 20, 1850, married first to Annie Green -- no children of this issue; second, to Mrs. Blanche Murray, and one son, William, was born to them.
    8. Nancy Van Ford, second daughter, born April 9, 1854, married to Jackson Davis, and there was one child, Lula, who married a Mr. Carragan.
    9. Iverson Lumpkin Ford, sixth son, was born February 6, 1856, married Ida Dell. Their children were:
      • Pearl Ford, married to a Mr. Flynt.
      • Harry Ford, unmarried.
      • Winona Ford, married to Hardy Bell.
      • Hazel Ford, married to Henry Egger.
      • Floy Ford, married to L. R. Starnes.
      • Iverson Ford, unmarried.
  • JOHN ALEXANDER FORD was married the second time to Jane Thompson. Their children were:
    1. Ashton Ford, married first to Eva Heard, and second to Miss Tatum.
    2. Susie Ford, married to D. Carl Stricklin.
    3. Galveston T. Ford, married to Belle Sessions, who at his death married A. H. Overton.
  • JAMES NEWTON FORD, fourth son of John and Nancy Graham Ford, married to Katherine Barbour Fulton on December 18, 1845. Mrs. Margaret Ford is still living at Brunswick, Georgia, at the age of eighty years. James N. Ford was Ordinary of Worth County from 1854 to 1856 and from 1860 to 1862. Their children were:
    1. William J. Ford, married Margaret Adams on April 20, 1864. Their children were:
      • Benjamin J. Ford
      • Thomas A. Ford
      • Ella Ford
      • Katie Ford
      • William J. Ford, Jr.
    2. August Ford married William A. Harris, one of the most prominent men of Georgia. No children were born to them.
    3. Georgia Virginia Ford was married to John Hall, who died shortly after their marriage. One son, John Hall, was born to this union. Georgia was married a second time to Dr. William Lee Sikes on November 14, 1880, at Isabella.
    4. Elzy Jones Ford I, fifth son of John and Nancy Graham Ford, married a Miss Jenkins.
    5. William Jackson Ford I, sixth son of John and Nancy Graham Ford, was a lawyer and died unmarried.
    6. Mary Ford, first daughter of John and Nancy Graham Ford, died unmarried.
    7. Sarah Ford, second daughter of John and Nancy Graham Ford, married William Sullivan.
    8. Nancy Ford, third daughter of John and Nancy Graham Ford, married Luke Jenkin.

MR. AND MRS. WILLIAM JACKSON FORD, SR. William Jackson Ford, Sr., was a scion of the third generation of the Ford family, who were among the first settlers of Worth County. The representative members of the various generations have been notable for sterling character, large and useful achievements. William J. Ford, Sr., was a substantial farmer and business man. His life was guided and governed by the highest principles. Though his important private business made large demands upon his time, he accorded to his county his quota of public service. He held the office of Sheriff of Worth County from 1876 to 1878. He represented the county in the House of Representatives, 1882-1885, Ex. 1883, 1884, and 1885. He married Rowena Hanes, March 2, 1886. He died at the age of forty, October 22, 1895. Mrs. Rowena Hanes Ford is the daughter of Joshua Jackson Hanes, born January 5, 1827, in Fayette, now Clayton County, Georgia. He was Justice of the Inferior Court of Clayton County. He served as 2nd Lieutenant in Co. E. 10th Ga. Inf., and later as Captain Q. M. C. Confederate Army of America. He died February 2, 1909. Her mother was, before marriage, Amanda Matilda Johnson, born July 31, 1828, in Greene County, died July 1, 1917. Mrs. Rowena Hanes Ford was born in Clayton County in the track made across Georgia by the sword and fire brand of General Sherman. Her experiences realized then are on another page in this history. Her father and grandfather moved their families to Irwin County to get them out of the dangers of Sherman's raiders just after the battle of Jonesboro. They settled near where Jefferson Davis was captured. After the war was over her father moved back to Jonesboro and she was reared there. Her grandfather continued to live in Irwin County until his death. Her husband's death left her with five small children. She took hold of his estate and by wise management reared her children, gave them educational advantages, and now, after they are all grown, she has a nice estate. Mrs. Ford is primarily a home-loving woman, loves her flowers and gardens. But her greatest work has been in training her children, all of whom reflect her spirit in the service they give the community in which they live, in every capacity of useful public spirited citizens. Her patriotism is very real and intense. She had three sons to serve in the World War. Two of them, "E. J." and "Brooks", were in Civil Service and could have evaded going, but not hers to be the hand to stay them when they relinquished their jobs to go to the battle front. Her son, "Willie", made the supreme sacrifice, though he lived ten years after the World War. They were years of suffering in a hospital in the far west. Her patriotism is not confined to times of war. Her contributions in the writing of this history of Worth County have been large. She treasures the worth while affairs of her State and County, and much of this history is taken from her scrap books. She is a member of Barnard Trail Chapter of the D. A. R. through descent from Robert and Hetty Jewell Pullen, James and Jemima Callaway Hanes, Thomas and Sarah Cooper McLendon, and her children also through John and Mary Ford. She is a Baptist, her father having been a deacon in that church throughout the active years of his life, and her mother a descendant of staunch Scotch Presbyterians.

J. OTIS HOLOMAN J. Otis Holoman is the scion of two of the oldest settlers of the County, the Ford and Holoman families. His grandfather, Rev. Wm. W. Holoman was a MIssionary Baptist preacher. He organized old Union Church. J. Otis Holoman has served the people of Worth for a long number of years in the capacity of dealer of fertilizers. He has large farming interests and has contributed much to the upbuilding of his native county. Mrs. Winnie Woolard (J. O.) Holoman exemplifies all the fine traits of her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Woolard. She is one of the finest workers in all civic organizations, is a D. A. R. member through descent from General Edward Vail, of North Carolina, is a member of the Methodist Church which comes first in her life work. They have one child, Mary, (Mrs. Graham Bateman.)

MRS. SALLIE BARBER Clipping from the Worth County Local, August 7, 1924. Mrs. Sallie Barber was a very fine character of the "Old South" type. She died a few years after the visit mentioned below. She made affidavit that the grave of John Ford, at the Pindertown Cemetery was the grave of the first of the Ford family to immigrate to this section.

OLD CITIZEN OF WORTH COUNTY VISITS SYLVESTER Mrs. Sallie Barber of Jonesboro is visiting relatives in Sylvester. She is accompanied by her granddaughter, Mrs. J. W. Stipe of Decatur. Mrs. Barber is a native of this section, having been born several years before Worth County was laid out. She celebrated her eightieth birthday on August 1st, and still enjoys life and takes a keen interest in current events. She was the fifth child of Gary G. Ford, Sr., and is the last one remaining of a family of twelve children. She left Worth County in 1872, while it was still one vast forest of pine, and thousands of cattle roamed at will over the wiregrass. Mrs. Barber, through occasional visits, has watched the wonderful progress of the county and its citizens; and there is still a very tender place in her heart for both. Relatives and friends in the county are wishing for her many happy returns of the birthday, and numerous visits as the years go by.

AFFIDAVIT STATE OF GEORGIA, WORTH COUNTY. Before the undersigned officer authorized by law to administer oaths, in person came Mrs. Sallie Ford Barber, who being first duly sworn according to law, deposes and says on oath as follows: That she is aged 80 years, and that her grandfather, John Ford, was buried in the brick enclosure south of and adjoining the graves of affiant's father and mother in the old Pindertown cemetery in the northern part of Worth County, Georgia. That the graves of affiant's father and mother, Gary G. Ford and Silvia Eason Ford, are plainly marked and can thus be located. That affiant's address is Jonesboro, Georgia. Mrs. Sallie Ford Barber. Sworn to and subscribe before me, this 16th day of August. 1924. J. O. Holamon, Notary Public, Worth County, Georgia (Official Seal)

  • WILLIAM WOODRUFF TISON, I William Woodruff Tison, I, father of William Woodruff Tison, II, who settled at Pindartown, married Mary _______ and had the following children:
    1. Joab Tison, married Elizabeth Smith. Tradition says that Elizabeth Smith Tison, wife of Joab Tison, had a dream about her husband, who was fighting in the Revolutionary War -- that he had been killed, and was so troubled she couldn't sleep; she got up and began to spin. (yarn) Soon someone knocked on the door, and it was her husband who was not killed, but his horse had been shot dead from under him, and he had come for another one.
    2. Moses Tison, married Rebekah Ragan.
    3. Andrew Tison
    4. Hiram Tison
    5. William Woodruff Tison, II married Levisa Ann Williams. William Woodruff Tison II was born in North Carolina. He was one of the first to move to this section when it was ceded to the whites by the Indians. He settled at Old Pindartown, on Flint River, on the old Stage Coach Road. He kept the inn and horses for the stage coaches. At one time Pindartown was called "Tison" for him. He became the owner of a large plantation and many slaves. He was a man of wealth and influence, and encouraged all progressive movements. He married Levisa Ann Williams. Their childrenc were as follows:
      • Littleton Tison, died unmarried.
      • Jernigan Tison, died unmarried.
      • Mary Tison, married Dr. Riley, March 24, 1854. No children.
      • Levisa Tison, married Zack Ross. Children: Sallie, married Bill Taylor.
      • Gussie Tison, married Will Cobb.
      • Effie Tison, married Mr. Harris.
      • Jessie Tison, married Mr. Harris.
      • Johnnie Tison, married Johnnie Hall, daughter of Dr. Hall.
      • Katharine Beatrice Tison, married Dudley Gleaton.
        • Alice Gleaton, married John Hope.
        • Theophilus Gleaton, died unmarried.
        • William D. Gleaton, died unmarried.
      • Clarence Tison, married Annie Johnson.
      • Francis Marion Tison, married Sarah Ford. Children: William Woodruff Tison and Anna Luta Tison.
      • Dr. Theophilus Williams Tison, married Georgia Ann Ford. Thirteen children were born of this marriage as follows:
        • Mark M. Tison
        • Susan Deariso Tison
        • Daty Smith Tison, married Jesse J. Forehand.
        • William Woodruff Tison, married first, Alice Holamon; second, Sarah Van Houston.
        • Levisa Tison, married George Howard.
        • Robert Graham Tison, married Maggie Tison.
        • Thomas Tison, married Eulalia Dykes.
        • Theophilus Tison, married Maude Boyd.
        • Lora Tison, married Frank Coleman.
        • Francis Marion Tison, Pearl Perry.
        • Joseph Tison, married Clara Belle Watson.
        • Littleton Tison, died in childhood.
        • Jackson Tison, died in childhood.
        • Leila Tison, died at eighteen.

        After the death of Levisa Williams Tison, William Woodruff Tison married Matilda Gleaton, and their children were:
        • William Tison, married Ida Shine.
        • Joab Tison, died unmarried.
        • Columbus Tison, died unmarried.

    James Thornhill, by testimony of his granddaughter, Mrs. Amanda Thornhill Castleberry, who remembered him well, was born in Maryland. His father was of English descent, his mother was Welch. James Thornhill was born in 1771, not long before the Revolutionary War. He remembered being in the field where his father was ploughing with gun on his plow stok, for he was a Minute Man, when they heard firing of guns. His father put him on the horse and told him to go to the house and tell his mother he had gone to fight the Tories. He saw his father climb the fence and leave. His father never returned, he was killed in some battle. His mother did not live long. He was placed under his uncle to learn the trade of cabinet maker. He came to Virginia when grown, on down to North Carolina, and to Macon County, Georgia. He moved his son, Newell Thornhill, to Worth County about 1856. He lived to the ripe old age of 87 years. It is not known who his wife was before marriage. He must have taught his sons the cabinet maker's trade. His granddaughter, Mrs. Mary Jane (Thornhill) Gwines, has beautiful old beadstead that her father, Newell Thornhill, made for her wedding present out of a tree growing in his back yard. These records are taken from the Bible of Newell Thornhill, now in possession of J. Thomas Thornhill of Worth County.

    1. James Thornhill, father of Newell Thornhill, born in Maryland, March 7, 1771. Children of James Thornhill.
      • Newell Thornhill, was born November 21, 1809. Newell Thornhill was married to Mary Underwood, daughter of Wm. Underwood of Macon County, October 29, 1839. Mary Underwood Thornhill, wife of Newell Thornhill was born in Macon County, Georgia on March 22, 1821. Children of Newell and Mary Thornhill are:
        • James William Thornhill, born December 1, 1840.
        • Louisa Amanda Thornhill, born February 9, 1843.
        • Sarah Josephine Thornhill, born October 3, 1845.
        • Columbus Lafayette Thornhill, born August 2, 1848.
        • John Thomas Thornhill, born January 15, 1851.
        • Newell Ellis Thornhill, born July 29, 1853.
        • Mary Jane Thornhill, October 8, 1856.
        • Enos Monroe Thornhill, June 12, 1859.
        • Marthy Rebecca Thornhill, November 22, 1861.
        • Frances Elizabeth Thornhill, born October 25, 1864.
        • Selena Clementine Thornhill, born May 3, 1868.
      • Harrison Thornhill, was born April 6, 1807.
      • Enos Thornhill, was born March 25, 1812.

  • James Wm. Thornhill and Matilda Willis were married October 19, 1865.
  • Sara Josephine Thornhill and Joseph L. Sumner were married November 5, 1865.
  • Columbus L. Thornhill and Sara C. Glover were married December 10, 1868.
  • John Thos. Thornhill and Susanna Saunders were married December 23, 1874.
  • Samuel Castleberry and Louiza Amanda Thornhill were married May 30, 1877.
  • Mary Jane Thornhill and William Thomas Gwines were married June 2, 1878.

The following inscriptions are found on the old Thornhill burying ground in Worth County.
  • James Thornhill-Born March 7, 1771, died October 16, 1857.
  • Newell Thornhill-Born November 21, 1809, died March 20, 1889.
  • Mrs. Mary Thornhill-Born March 22, 1821, died August 5, 1915.

    The Thornhills and their families make up a large part of the best citizens of Worth County. James Thornhill had a brother to come with him from Maryland to North Carolina and on to Macon County, Georgia. This brother went west from Macon County, Georgia.


    The Sumner family and its wide connection, is one of the largest and most influential families of this county, and of the state. The first one of the family to come to this part of the state was Joseph Sumner, Jr., and wife, Mahala (Smith)Sumner. They immigrated here about 1830 from Emanuel County, with several children, stock and property. White's History of Georgia gives him as one of the earliest settlers of Irwin County. He was later cut off into this county when it was organized, making him among Worth's first settlers. Joseph Sumner, Jr., was the son of Joseph Sumner, Sr., of Emanuel County, Georgia. As one of Georgia's Revolutionary soldiers, he drew land twice in that county for service in the Revolutionary War. This is found in the office of the Secretary of State. The last draw was in 1827 shortly before his death in December 1827. His will is to be found in Emanuel County court house. Joseph Sumner, Jr., was one of the executors of his will. Joseph Sumner and his wife, Mahala (Smith) Sumner, had a large family of seventeen children, fourteen of whom grew to maturity. He and his wife and many of his descendants are buried in the family graveyard near his home a few miles north of Sumner. His sons are found among the first officers of Worth County.

    • Daniel S. Sumner; Tax Collector from 1856-1860; Treasurer from 1873-1875.
    • George W. Sumner; Tax Collector 1866; Tax Receiver 1877.
    • Joseph M. Sumner, youngest son, was Representative in the State Legislature in 1880-'81.
    • W. J. Sumner, grandson, Ordinary, 1893.
    • George S. Sumner, grandson, Treasurer, 1887.
    • Joseph L. Sumner, grandson, Representative from the County in 1894-'95.
    • John N. Sumner, grandson, has been Sheriff of Worth with the exception of four years since 1900 to date, 1934.
    • Dr. Gordon S. Sumner, great-grandson, was Representative from the County, 1913 to 1917, and elected to represent the County 1933 to 1934, and served 22 months in the World War as Medical Officer, 1st Lieutenant.
    • Colonel Walter R. Sumnergreat-grandson, was County Superintendent of Schools of Worth with the exception of one term from 1911 until his death in 1931.

    The descendents of Joseph Sumner who served in the Southern Army during the Civil War, Muster Roll of Militia 1125 G. M., Worth County are:
    • Daniel S. Sumner
    • Joseph M. Sumner
    • John (Jack) C. Sumner
    • William R. Sumner
    • Berrian Sumner
    • Mathew Sumner

    Muster Roll of 867 Dist. G. M. Worth County, Georgia
    • George W. Sumner; Orderly Sergt.
    • Gordon Sumner

    Miss Estelle Sumner, great-granddaughter of Joseph Sumner, was the only woman from Worth County to go to the World War as a nurse doing oversea duty in the American Red Cross. She is living at present at Jacksonville, Florida. She married T. I. Cardwell a few years ago.

    Colonel Will S. Sumner, a grandson, who is Postmaster of Poulan, has recently written the family tree or genealogy of the Sumner Family. He has been included in the list of leading active genealogists of the United States. By permission we give below from his book the first Family of Sumner's in the county:

    • Joseph Sumner, Jr., born September 15, 1793, died June 14, 1880, married Mahala Smith in 1813. Mahala Smith was born October 11, 1799, died March 30, 1882.
      1. Gordon Archibald Sumner, born 27 April 1814, died 6 July 1870, married in 1838 to Rachel Marchant, born January 20, 1812, died August 14, 1889.
      2. Sallie Sumner, born 1816, died 1861, married Benjamin Willis in 1833, he was born 1810, died May 4, 1882.
      3. Matilda Sumner, born January 27, 1821, died September 27, 1897, married in 1838 to Jehu Fletcher, born January 4, 1820, died January 19, 1899.
      4. Eliza Sumner, born May 3, 1825, died 20 January 1879, married Isaac Rooks in 1845.
      5. Mary Sumner, married William Garrett in 1848. She was born September 29, 1830, died December 2, 1901.
      6. Daniel S. Sumner, born October 28, 1828, died September 24, 1899, married March 3, 1853, first to Martha Monk, born February 20, 1835, died September 29, 1874; married second April 16, 1876 to Martha Hobby.
      7. George W. Sumner, married Roady Porter on January 26, 1854. He was born April 21, 1834, died October 1, 1883. She was born February 18, 1836, died June 24, 1889.
      8. Martha Sumner, born August 20, 1832, died August 13, 1914, married February 19, 1852, to Thomas Young, born May 14, 1829, died February 18, 1887.
      9. Joseph M. Sumner, married E. Jane Young, December 16,1858. His birth, August 16, 1836, died December 25, 1913. She was born February 15, 1841, died March 1, 1930.
      10. Thomas Sumner, died in the Confederate War, unmarried.
      11. Elizabeth Sumner, first married James S. Young in December 1857, born February 27, 1840, died July 30, 1914, married second, James W. Trammel, 1866.
      12. John C. Sumner(Called Jack), married first to Kebecca A. Young, January 15, 1851, born June 9, 1831, died February 28, 1853 married second, Mary Monk, 1854, born December 29, 1832, died February 28, 1855, married third, Polly Hobby, 1857, born October 30, 1826, died October 10, 1875, married fourth, Peniline Joiner, 1876, born May 21, 1842, died 15 Jun 1919. He was born January 15, 1827, died September 18, 1915.
      13. Missouri Sumner, married Joe Sutton.
      14. Safronie Sumner, born March 28, 1844, died August 17, 1901, married October 20, 1864, Elbert Fletcher, born July 1, 1842, died September 9, 1896
      15. Three children died young

    Joseph and Mahala Sumner's descendents in the Civil War, were six sons and thirteen grandsons who answered to the roll of Georgia Volunteers. The Sumner Quartette of male voices of Worth County are all descendants of Joseph Sumner.

    JOSEPH SUMNER (1793-1880)

    Joseph Sumner, the progenitor of all the Sumner's in this section, was very reticent about having a photograph of made of himself, so some one snapped him when his attention was given to a very important job, dressing a "piny woodsrooter." Mr. Sumner was a tall man and the rooter was a throughbred, judging from his length. The beam to which the hog is hanging is a log of the smokehouse which was made to extend for this purpose. The notch underneath is for a brace in the event several hogs were hung there at the same time. A split rail fence makes the background.

    Joseph Sumner was a veteran of the Creek Indian War and was one of the first of Inferior Court Judges of Worth. He served in the establishing of the county, White's Statistics of Georgia gives him as one of the outstanding Citizens of this section. Many of his posterity have done him honor. His father, Joseph Sumner, of Emanuel county, was a Revolutionary soldier.

    • Susan E. Hamons, born 1804, died November 12, 1879.
    • Mary Sumner, wife of John C. Sumner, born October 30, 1826, died October 10, 1875.
    • Rebecca Sumner, wife of John C. Sumner, born June 9, 1831, died February 28, 1853.
    • Mahala Sumner, born October 11, 1799, died March 30, 1882.

      [Original data: Grubbs, Lillie Martin, History of Worth County, Georgia: for the first eighty years, 1854-1934. Macon, Ga. :J. W. Burke Co., 1934.

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