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TATUM Pioneers in Davidson County, Tennessee
Source:  Edythe Rucker Whitley.  1965.  "Pioneeers of Davidson County, Tennessee."  Mimeo. Tennessee Genealogical Records, Nashville (later published by Genealogical Publ. Co., Baltimore, MD; online at GenealogyLibrary.com).

WARNING:  the statements regarding the first Nathaniel TATUM are a garbling of two different immigrants (e.g., the Nathaniel who came to Virginia on the George made the crossing in 1619 at the age of 20, so he could hardly be the one still living in 1703).  It also appears she garbled the data on the two Peters, so do not accept anything in this sketch unless confirmed with primary documentation.  For a coherent discussion of the early TATUM immigrants, see Randy Lewis's Tatum web site [link died].

Family Histories 73


Nathaniel Tatum came over to Virginia in the "George" before 1683 and settled in Charles City County.  He was in Prince George County in 1703.  His wife was named Ann.  Their known children were Samuel, Mary, and Nathaniel who was in Prince George by 1704.

It has been clearly proven in several publications that the second Nathaniel was the father of Nathaniel, Jr., Edward, Chris., and possibly others.

Nathaniel Tatum, Jr. had a wife named Elizabeth.  He had died by 1750, leaving children Peter, Rebecca, Edward, and Nathaniel.

Edward Tatum, son of the second Nathaniel, died in 1739.  His wife was Rebecca RivesEdward Tatum's will was recorded in Surry County, Virginia 1736-9.  They had at least two sons, Nathaniel and PeterPeter had a wife name Mary, by whom were born:  Littleberry (April 10, 1739), Eps, Ruth, and Peter (went to Georgia in 1743 and died in 1791).  The second Peter Tatum was the father of Epps, Thomas, Peter, Rebecca, Howell (married H. Ogden), Nancy, and Sally.

Chris. Tatum, son of the second Nathaniel, was born in 1683 and died in 1750 in Surry County, Virginia.  He married Bridget Scott, daughter of John Scott of Prince George County. Chris and Bridget (Scott) Tatum were the parents of Joshua, Bethia, John, Frances (married George Rives), and Chris (died in 1769 in Sussex County, Virginia and had a wife, Elizabeth) (W.B. 3 Surry County, Virginia, p. 132).

Joshua Tatum, son of Chris and Bridget, married Amey Chappell, who was born in Virginia, the daughter of James Chappell. Joshua Tatum and his wife Amey were blessed with sons Major Howell Tatum (born in 1753) and James Tatum. James died in Davidson County, Tennessee, leaving a will, dated 1821 (W.B. 8, p. 28 Davidson County, Tennessee).  He left no issue, but left his property ot "my only brother Howell Tatum."

74 Red River Settlers

Howell Tatum was a Revolutionary soldier and advanced to the rank of "Major."  He married Rosannah Wendel in Davidson County, Tennessee on 24 December 1795.  Their Children were Edward M. and Eliza, who married Macijah Wade.

Major Tatum divorced his wife in 1812.  His pension application (R 2027) was based upon Revolutionary War service rendered while he was a resident of North Carolina.  On 21 August 1773, he was appointed ensign of the First North Carolina Regiment.  In 1776, he was promoted to Lieutenant, and on 3 April 1777, he was made a captain of said regiment.  He also acted as aid-de-camp and assistant deputy quartermaster.  He was captured at the surrender of Charleston, South Carolina, was held prisoner until August 1781, and continued in service until sometime in 1783.  He also served under General Andrew Jackson and fought against the Indians during the War of 1812.  After this service, he was military storekeeper at Nashville, Tennessee for a year or more.  He was Judge of the Circuit court in Nashville District.  He died at Nashville in October 1822.  Rosannah Tatum was living with her son, Edwin M. Tatum, in 1853.  Rosannah was married in Bedford County, Tennessee in September 1828 to Anderson Claxton, who died in September 1849 in Pulaski County, Arkansas.

On 16 November 1853 while living in Sebastian County, Arkansas, Rosannah Claxton, aged sevety-six years, applied for a pension on the account of the Revolutionary War service of Howell Tatum.  Her claim was not allowed, as she had been divorced from Howell Tatum.

In 1853, Stephen Cantrell of Jefferson County, Arkansas stated that he became acquainted with Howell Tatum about 1804 and that afterwards he went to live with the firm of Dederick and Tatum in the city of Nashville, of which firm said Howell Tatum was a member, and that in 1909 he married Howell Tatum's wife's sister.

Howell Tatum was assigned a large number of grants in nearly all the Middle Tennessee counties.  From the records in the various court houses, I believe Mr. Tatum was what might be called a real estate dealer, buying and selling lands.

The Davison County records (Book P, p. 345) 17 November 1829, the settlement of Howell Tatum, deceased, shows cash paid to Edwin M. Tatum, one of the heirs of the said Howell TatumMicajah Wade married Eliza TatumJohn P. Wiggins is also mentioned, but the record does not reveal whether he married a daughter of Tatum or not.  Andrew Erwen, Junior is also mentioned as guardian.

There is a will in Davidson County, dated 26 February 1836, recorded 23 August 1844, and signed by Nathaniel Tatum, in which there is mention of a "sister" Rebecca Tatum and a "niece" Margaret Edwards (W.B. 13, p. 78).

Peter Tatum married Fanny Jones on 24 September 1811 in Davidson County (M.B. 1, p. 119).

David Spears, asking that he be issued a military warrant in Davidson County, Tennessee, stated that Howell Tatum, a captain in the First North Carolina Regiment in the Revolutionary War, knew him and knew that he, Spears, was a soldier or a non-commissioned officer in the second Regiment of that state from the spring of 1776 until after the fall of Charleston in May 1780, at which time Spears and Tatum were both captured (Tennessee Genealogical Records, Vol. 4, p. 38 by Whitley).

There is an indenture, dated 5 Jun 1799, between Howell Tatum and Rosannah Tatum, his wife, on the one part and Anthony Foster, Robert Searcy, and Francis B. Sappington, carpenters, on the other part for $350.00, etc. (Davidson County, D.B. E, p. 231).

As I have previously stated, Howell Tatum was a dealer in real estate.  He never actually resided in Montgomery County, that I can find, but did a rather large business in that section of the country.

The Tatum family was well represented in Middle Tennessee prior to 1820.  By that year, Dasney, John C., William, Nathaniel, Howell, Jesse, Edward, Edward, Jr., Jonathan, Isaiah, Benjamin, James, John, Jr., Peter, Stephen, Dry, and two

Family Histories 75

William Tatums were living in Davidson County.  Most, if not all of them, came to Tennessee from North Carolina.

The Tatums were active in the War of 1812.  Howell Tatum was principal engineer under Major General Andrew Jackson in the General's expedition against the Creek Indians.  He is recorded as having been sick on 26 February 1814.  Ira, Isaiah, Jesse, Jonathan, Nathaniel, and Peter Tatum were all privates in the war of 1812, and James Tatum was a wagon-master.

Major Howell Tatum of Nashville and Middle Tennessee was a distant relative of Howell Tatum of Alabama, who was the son of Peter Tatum of Wilkes County, Ga.

In addition to his own activities, Major Howell Tatum transacted much business in land deals for General Andrew Jackson in Montgomery, Robertson, and Sumner Counties, Tennessee and in several counties in southern Kentucky.

Major Howell Tatum's grave has been marked by the General Francis Nash Chapter, D.A.R.  He is buried in Old City Cemetery, Nashville.

Stewart Mss. file, unpbu. in Whitley Collection. Includes Maryland data.
Tatum Mss. file, unpub. in Whitley Collection.
Family Group Sheet of Peter TATUM & Mary EPPS

Family Group Sheet of Peter TATUM & Rebecca HOWELL

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