MARTIN, WILLIAM HARTWELL - Weakley County, Tennessee | WILLIAM HARTWELL MARTIN - Tennessee Gravestone Photos

William Hartwell MARTIN

Martin Family Cemetery
Weakley County,

August 25, 1830 - September 4, 1873

'Blessed are the pure of heart, for they shall see God'

The following narrative provided courtesy of the Turner Publishing Company from the book "People and Places of Downtown Martin" by Virginia Clark Vaughn.

"Three of the sons of William Martin were instrumental in the development of the city of Martin, Tennessee. George Washington Martin, Marshall Presley Martin, and William Hartwell Martin. They were operating a sawmill in Gardner, Tennessee in 1872 when they learned that the north-south route of the Mississippi Central Railroad was to be built through the Gardner area. They quickly and quietly offered the railroad officials free right-of-way through their land, three miles to the east, and an additional strip of land for a park which would be in the center of the town. The railroad officials could hardly refuse, seeing an economic advantage in having their line cross the north-south railroad which was on the Martin property.

By early 1873 a town was planned, a map was made, streets were cleared, and the Martin brothers began selling land. P. W. Lee, his brother, Frank, and Alexander Clemons helped the Martin brothers plan the small village.

George W. owned the land on the east side of the north-south proposed tracks, while Marshall P. and William H. owned land on the west side. Each brother, wanting the town to develop on his land, compromised and had the town planned on both sides of the railroad. Their brother, Thomas Dudley Martin owned a large section of land on the east side of the city (present location of the Industrial Park) and their sister, Virginia, owned land further east. Some of the early deeds show their names, but this was property that they inherited from their brother, William Hartwell, who died in 1878 in the yellow fever epidemic.

As soon as the Mississippi Central agreed to pass through the Martin's land, the brothers got busy. In May 1872, George W. and Marshall P. sold one half interest of their mill in Gardner to W.H.M. Brooks and wife. They moved some of the milling equipment and established a sawmill about 200 yards southwest of the proposed railroad crossing.

". . . . . . From the sawmill, lumber went into the building of a passenger station to be used by both railroads, near the crossing. A large frame hotel was quickly constructed near the passenger station by George Martin and named The Martin House. William Hartwell Martin supervised construction and H.P. Miller was put in charge. The town of Martin began to blossom. In five years there were 710 people living within the city limits. . . . . . . . ."

". . . . on the southwest corner of Main and McCombs, George W. Martin gave a lot to the Methodist Church South on August 15, 1877. It was 50 by 125 feet. A frame church building had already been erected on the site in 1876. In 1895 this building was purchased by the Cumberland Presbyterians and moved east on Main to a lot purchased from J.F. Looney."
Will of W. H. MARTIN, deceased Martin, Tennessee, County of Weakley
I, W.H. MARTIN, do make and publish this as my last will and testament, hereby revoking and making void all other wills by me at any time made.

First, I direct that my funeral expenses and all my just debts be paid as soon after my death as possible out of any moneys that I may die possessed of or first comes into the hands of my Executor.

Secondly, I give and bequeath to Birttie GARDNER, my niece, six thousand dollars in cash.

Fourthly, and six thousand dollars in cash to John GARDNER, my nephew, both children of my sister, Mrs. Virginia M. GARDNER.

Fifthly, and all of my other property, cash notes and real estate of every kind whatever, to be equally divided between my brothers Thomas D. MARTIN, George W. MARTIN and Marshall MARTIN, and my sister, Mrs. Virginia M. GARDNER. Lastly, I do hereby nominate and appoint my brothers, G.W. and M.P. MARTIN, my Executors. In witness whereof, I do to this my last will, set my hand and seal this 3rd day of September 1878.

Thomas AKERS
September 4th 1878
M.P. MARTIN requests me to state that W.H. MARTIN was desirous of having his niece and nephew Birttie and Johnie GARDNER, named in the within will, thoroughly educated from the money that the has given them.
A.M. CLEMONS, Notary Public
Produced in open court and duly recorded this 6th day of November 1878.
J.M. FINCH, Clerk

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Contributed on 7/8/13 by ashaw444
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Record #: 140

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Submitted: 7/8/13 • Approved: 7/8/13 • Last Updated: 8/15/15 • R140-G0-S3

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