A Biography of
Rev. John Henry Dunn
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Table of Contents
The Birth Date
Civil War Service
Marriage and Family
Back to the
Dunn Home Page
Back to the Genealogy Main Page
Back to Tam and Michael's Home Page
John Henry Dunn, my great-grandfather, was a noted "Northern" Methodist
preacher of Georgia and Alabama in the post-Civil War era. Besides being
a "Northern" Methodist in the Reconstruction South, Dunn was also a Union
Army veteran (serving in the only Georgia battalion which fought for the
Union -- and under Sherman at that) and later an organizer of the Grand
Army of the Republic (GAR) in Georgia and Alabama, which in the time and
place at the very least suggests a willingness to defy popular opinion.
The Grand Army of the Republic post he headed for a while in Blue Ridge,
Georgia, called itself the William T. Sherman post. (There were only two
GAR posts in all of Georgia, at least for native Georgians, and he commanded
one of them.) The mountaineers of northern Georgia had Union sympathies,
it is true, but Dunn seems to have gone out of his way to proclaim them.
It is my intention to do for my Dunn ancestors what I have already done
for the early generations of my Collins ancestry: as I have stated in that
case, to produce as thorough, and as thoroughly documented, a family history
as possible. The Dunns were less cooperative than the Collinses in what
they left behind, and the early history of the Dunns remains somewhat uncertain.
This biography of my great-grandfather should be taken as a model, however,
of the sort of detail I hope to achieve in the overall history as it is
First, a note on source materials. As a prominent minister, Rev. Dunn
left a fair amount of documentary evidence behind, as well as five children,
including my grandfather. But since I never knew my grandfather, Louis
Dunn, or his three brothers, the only direct source for Rev. Dunn's family
was my late great-aunt, Rev. Dunn's daughter Maggie Dunn McKinney, whom
I met briefly in 1967 during early research on the family history. I also
corresponded with her son, Guy McKinney, for some time, and Guy kindly
passed on Aunt Maggie's answers. Some anecdotes and one of the photographs
of Rev. Dunn are courtesy of Maggie McKinney, but much of the detail in
this biography comes from documentary sources. (More recently I have been
in touch with descendants of some of the sons, but because of the additional
generation since I first began researching, they offer little detail for
Rev. Dunn's career.)
Rev. Dunn's colleague, Dr. R.H. Robb, left a number of testimonies to
the Northern Methodist experience in northern Georgia after the Civil War:
a little book with some mention of the Dunns, a letter he wrote to my grandfather,
and a great deal of material provided to George G. Ward, the historian
of Gilmer County, earlier in this century. I also met Mr. Ward while he
was still living back in 1967. The records of the Georgia and North Alabama
Conferences of the old M.E. (Northern) Church have helped provide a lot
of the chronology and a little mystery about Rev. Dunn's career, and another
Methodist historian, George Hammond, produced a little history in the 1930s.
Local histories of some of the counties where J.H. Dunn preached have helped.
I have one detailed obituary from an Anniston, Alabama newspaper, and a
shorter one from church records; though it contains a couple of errors
about his early lifethe newspaper obituary seems quite reliable otherwise.
His Civil War enlistment and service records survive in the National Archives,
and since he and his widow received pensions based on his Civil War disabilities,
those records provide considerable detail about his earlier life, some
about his later, and much detail about his troubled medical history. All
these sources are cited below and full references given on the citations.
While it is possible to document Rev. Dunn fairly thoroughly, there are
many gaps. We know most of the churches he preached in, but certainly not
all. The old circuit rider tradition of Methodism meant he preached beyond
the church to which he was assigned, at least at times, and we know that
he was assigned to one church, while, sometimes, working hard at creating
a seminary elsewhere. There is a seven year gap in his ministry, at least
as accepted by his own church's conference: what he was doing, or where
he was preaching, in that interval is a bit of a mystery, though we can
locate him once or twice. I hope eventually to learn more. The natural
tendency of 19th century sources to praise a noted minister makes it hard
to get a sense of the real man underneath. But here is what I know so far.
The Birth Date
John Henry Dunn was born on December 20, 1848, according to his tombstone
in Tallapoosa, Georgia and other indications.(1)
This date seems to be the correct one, but we do have a signed statement
in his own hand stating that he was born on December 20, 1847. This
is in a declaration he filled out, required for keeping his Civil War pension,
filed May 22, 1912 and now in the National Archives. There he states that
he was born in Ducktown, Tennessee in 1847. But without questioning the
Reverend Dunn's good Methodist honesty, there is reason to think the 1848
date is correct. The statement claiming 1847 was submitted as part of his
pension application, and apparently used throughout his correspondence
with the pension authorities. But when he enlisted in 1864, he claimed
to be 18, which would mean he was born in 1845 or 1846.(2)
Obviously he inflated his age in order to join the Army, a fairly common
practice. If he was born in 1847 he was actually 16 years and four months
old when he joined in April of 1864. If we accept the 1848 date however,
he was only 15 years and four months old. Perhaps he felt that to assure
his pension he needed to claim to be over 16 at the time. At any rate this
seems the most probable explanation of the differences, judging from later
census records and the like. But 1847 cannot be completely ruled out, so
I note the discrepancy here. Throughout this biography and family charts,
etc., I use the 1848 date as the correct one.
He was the first son of James Dunn and Susan Wikle Dunn, and presumably
was named for his two grandfathers: "Old Uncle John" Dunn and "Old Man
Henry" Wikle, as various descendants and other sources later called them.
He was born during the period of a few years at most when his father and
grandfather were living on the Tennessee-Georgia border, operating a ferry
at the site where Copperhill(3), Tennessee
and McCaysville, Georgia are now located. In his pension application, Rev.
Dunn says he was born at Ducktown, Tennessee. Although Ducktown today is
a few miles north of Copperhill, the name was reportedly once used for
the whole Copper Basin. The Dunns lived at the site of Copperhill, and
a house there was known as "the old Dunn place" long after the town had
grown up around it. The "old Dunn place" is said to have stood "near the
present Methodist church" in Copperhill.(4)
It is presumably where J.H. Dunn was born.
In every census during his lifetime, Dunn listed his birthplace as Tennessee,
though after his death some obituaries said he had been born in Georgia.
It was an easy enough mistake. The Dunns had moved to Georgia back in 1833,
moved to the Tennesssee border where they ran a ferry in the 1840s, and
later moved back southward.(5) James Dunn
was back in the Cartecay area of Gilmer County, Georgia by the next year
(1849), when their next son, Jesse W., was born. The grandparents, John
and Elizabeth Dunn, were still on the Tennessee side of the line in 1850,
and James Dunn may not have sold his last land on the border until 1857,
but clearly John Henry Dunn was in Tennessee only long enough to be born
there. (The question of landholdings and movement will be discussed in
greater detail in the biographies of John Henry Dunn's father and grandfather.)
His upbringing would apparently have occurred in the Cartecay area east
of Ellijay, Georgia, where both his grandfathers had originally settled
in the 1830s. This was also the area where his future wife's parents came
from, and as will be noted in a moment, where both Dunns and Pages were
We know, of course, that he was raised in an intense Methodist environment.
His father's religious practices seem never to have occasioned much comment,
but his grandfather John Dunn is always referred to as an avid and enthusiastic
believer, who himself became involved in the Northern Methodist revival
movement after the Civil War. When the original John Dunn, John Henry Dunn's
grandfather, sold his old land in Rabun County in 1834, after moving to
Gilmer County in 1833, he sold his land, "with the exception of one acre
around the Methodist meeting house reserved for that purpose."(6)
John Henry Dunn's mother's father, Henry Wikle, had also been a devout
Methodist, and his tombstone is said to be the oldest dated one in the
Cartecay Church cemetery, though the Church has cited 1834 as the date
when it in fact is 1844(7). Wikle he had
died before his daughter married James Dunn and thus before John Henry
Dunn was born. (As mentioned in his own biography, none of his children
married while he lived, though his daughters were trending towards becoming
old maids by then, in the standards of the locality.) John Henry Dunn's
future wife, Trissie Ann Page, also came from a Methodist family to be
discussed below. It appears that all were members of the old Cartecay Methodist
Church (John Dunn and Henry Wikle had helped found it) until the "Northern"
Methodist revival in Georgia at the end of the Civil War. The old Cartecay
Church became a Southern Methodist Church after the split in 1844 over
slavery. After the war, the Dunns would become "Northern" Methodists.
The Dunns seem to have also been fond of the enthusiasm characteristic
of Methodism in the era of camp meetings. In addition to being among the
founders of the Cartecay Methodist Church, John Dunn (grandfather of J.H.
Dunn), Henry Wikle (the other grandfather), and Robert Smith (a brother-in-law
of John Dunn) were all among the trustees who founded the Cartecay Camp
Ground for camp meetings on December 27, 1842, "where Oakland School now
As for his schooling, we do not know a great deal, but it appears that
at the primary level his education was in the local "poor school" -- actually
the equivalent of a public school, for those children whose families were
not able to pay for private schooling. The Gilmer County records have a
suviving list of "poor school" enrollees for 1858 (and apparently not for
any other years in that decade). The list for Militia District 932, which
is the Cartecay district, includes John Dunn and Jesse Dunn. Although there
were other John Dunns in the area, it seems most likely that this refers
to John Henry Dunn, who would have been 10, and his younger brother Jesse
W. Dunn (1849-1941) who would have been about a year younger.(9)
John and Jesse appear together, and since the record is not alphabetized,
this makes it likely they were from the same family, and thus even likelier
that it refers to John Henry Dunn. Their younger brothers and sisters would
not yet have been of school age in 1858. It is interesting to note that
the next two names on the same page are Caroline Page and Asbury Page.
Caroline Page was a sister of Trissie Ann Page, who later married John
Henry Dunn, and Asbury Page was their brother Hilliard Asbury Page (the
name also appears as Asbery and Asberry in some records). These two Page
children -- apparently the same two -- also appear in the record
for Militia District 864 in the same year. That is the Tickanetley District
just east of Cartecay. There they appear (in the spelling "Asberry") along
with Sarah Page and Terrecia Page. The two additional names appear to be
the two Page girls, Sarah Jane and Trissie Ann, who later married John
Henry Dunn's uncle and John Henry Dunn himself.(10)
The records do at least indicate that the Dunns and Pages were educating
their children in the local school system.
Civil War Service
Northern Georgia, particularly mountainous areas like Gilmer County,
were strongholds of Union sentiment during the Civil War, which broke out
when John Henry Dunn was not yet 13. Though the Confederate sympathizers
disdained the Unionists as "hogbacks" and worse, many slipped over the
mountains into Tennessee to rally to the "old flag". This was not easy
in the earlier parts of the war, because there were few roads through the
steep Blue Ridge and Cohutta mountains. As Union forces advanced into southeastern
Tennessee, however, it became easier to reach the Union lines, and Cleveland,
Tennessee, on the Ocoee not far downriver from the old Dunn ferry site,
became a major rallying point.(11)
He was not alone in his Union sentiments. John Henry Dunn's future father-in-law,
Gazaway Page, is said in family tradition to have left the state for Tennessee
or Kentucky to avoid the war.(12) At least
some of the Wikles (his mother's family) were pretty certainly Unionist
as well: John Henry Dunn's mother's sister's husband, Emanuel Morton Carpenter,
was reportedly a well-known Unionist, who was forced into Confederate service
but later escaped behind Union lines.(13)
The Dunns' Kell cousins, however, seem to have been uniformly Confederate,
and served in a number of Confederate units throughout the war.
Early in the war there had been some irregular Unionist guerrilla forces
organized in this part of North Georgia -- both infantry and cavalry.(14)
These units, the infantry version of which called itself the First Georgia,
were never formally accepted into the Union Army, however.(15)
By early 1864 the Union had broken out of its Chattanooga lines and
its forces were not all that far from Gilmer County. In the spring of 1864
John Henry Dunn was 15 and William Tecumseh Sherman was preparing to launch
his drive into Georgia. Sherman started his move at the beginning of May,
but prior to this John Henry Dunn had run off to join the Union Army. Georgians
who joined Sherman were few enough: those who bragged about that fact in
later years were even more rare. John Henry Dunn was one. George G. Ward,
the late historian of Gilmer County, Georgia, describes the area at the
In the spring of 1864 Gilmer County was still, in a sense, behind a
natural rampart of mountains that greatly hampered invasion in main force.
Though the roar of heavy artillery, thundering more than forty miles across
the Cohutta mountains was heard in various parts of the County. [sic: incomplete
sentence.] It gave a grim reminder of a phase of the war we had
escaped, but told us of the fearful realities of war just behind our mountain
Natives who had slipped away and joined the Yankees at Calhoun, Tennessee,
and at other points, as in the case of John Hatley, contemptuously referred
to by southern sympathizers as "hogbacks", sometimes led detachments of
Union soldiers back from Cleveland, Tennessee and other points as they
were, in turn, seized by the main Union Army . . .(16)
Cleveland, Tennessee -- on the Ocoee River a few miles upstream from
the old Dunn ferry site on the state line -- was the rallying point for
those Georgia mountaineers who wanted to rally round the old flag. John
Henry Dunn crossed the border to Cleveland and on April 13, 1864, he enlisted
in the Union Army for three years. He was assigned to Company A, the 1st
Battalion, Georgia Infantry -- the only Union Georgia unit (and a below-strength
battalion at that) in the war. (Unlike most southern states, there were
not even any Union black units.) An obituary says he served in a Kentucky
unit during the war, but that is most likely because by 1914 few southerners
could conceive that there had been a Georgia Union battalion.(17)
When John Henry Dunn enlisted, he was 15 years and four months old.
He listed his age as 18, presumably the minimum at the time and place.
He was described as having dark hair, dark complexion, gray eyes, and being
five feet six inches tall. (Later in life he was 5'8 ½" tall, so
if both data are accurate he had not even reached his full growth when
he joined up.)(18) He listed his occupation
as farmer. He was promised a $100 enlistment bounty.
Though he enlisted in April, John Henry Dunn was not mustered in until
October 31, 1864. The mustering-in took place in Marietta, Georgia. By
that time Sherman had pushed through northwestern Georgia and taken Atlanta.
John Henry Dunn seems to have missed most of the war in northwest Georgia
somehow in the six months between enlistment and muster-in. The records
do not make clear exactly why. Possibly those who had crossed the mountains
to Cleveland were carried along in the train of the Army until such time
as enough of Georgia was in Union hands to allow them to be mustered into
the regular forces.
There is also some hint that they were not really trusted by the Union,
and were not used until they could be used in garrison and guard duties
well behind the lines. On the other hand, on October 13 General Hood, counterattacking
behind Sherman's lines, had retaken the railroad town of Dalton, Georgia.
A few days later he withdrew into Alabama, but Sherman may have felt that
it was time to use some of the Georgia troops to further reinforce his
rear. The unit into which Dunn was mustered, the First Battalion, Georgia
Infantry (USA), was formed only after the previously existing guerrilla
units in northern Georgia had been refused acknowledgment by the Union
Army, and they soon dissolved themselves. Some of their fighters joined
the new First Georgia, which should not be confused with the earlier (irregular)
First Georgia led by Col. James G. Brown. Some of the men mustered in were
also reportedly recruited among Confederate POWs freed at the fall of Atlanta.(19)
It is therefore interesting that Dunn's unit was assigned to guard the
railroad junction at Dalton after Hood was pushed away. Two key railroads
joined there, forming the artery Sherman had used to move from Chattanooga
to Atlanta. Dunn's unit records show that it engaged in some "skirmishes".
This may refer to skirmishing near Dalton on November 30 and December 5,
1864, and again on March 13 and 14, 1865, and on April 1, 1865 a Union
force operated from Dalton to Spring Place.(20)
The Official Records, however, do not specifically identify the First Georgia
as being involved in any of these; the Georgian troops seem not to have
been particularly trusted. It was a small unit -- 164 names appear in the
compiled service records for the 1st Battalion, of which about 97 were
listed in Dunn's own Company A (its Captain was Alonzo M. Rogers).(21)
And it was the only Georgia Union unit ever formally inducted into the
US Army during the war.
Dunn's unit remained around Dalton for the duration. Through April of
1865 --the time of Appomattox though the southern war lasted a bit longer
-- the muster rolls show him as present for duty. In May and June, however,
he is shown as absent, sick, since June 10, 1865. He was in the "Smallpox
Hosp or Post Hosp. Dalton Ga." A record in his pension file suggests the
former hospital might have been at Bridgeport, Alabama, or at any rate
he may have been at one time hospitalized there. He is said to have had
measles and smallpox while in the Army, according to a letter in his pension
file written after his death by his second wife.(22)
On July 19, 1865, more than three months after Appomattox, Dunn was
mustered out with the rest of his company. He had not yet been paid: his
pay was due from enlistment. So was the whole of the $100 bounty. However,
he was docked $22.07 on his clothing account, for one canteen and one haversack,
which he had presumably lost or kept. His age was still listed as 18, though
it had been 14 months since his enlistment. He was by now actually 16 and
Marriage and Children
Trissie Ann Page
Soon after the end of the war, John Henry Dunn married Trissie Ann Page,
daughter of Gazaway and Nancy Page, all of whom are to be profiled separately.
Trissie Ann was about the same age as himself or slightly older, being
born in July 1847,(23) and lived near the
Dunns in the Cartecay area. The Pages were a Methodist family as well,
probably from at least her grandfather's day in South Carolina, and the
name "Gazaway" may have reflected a family of preachers there (or a family
name, in which case the family of preachers might have been related).(24)
In fact, three Page sisters married Dunns, and at least two of the sisters
married preachers; the only boy was named Hilliard Asbury Page, the middle
name a common name among Methodists (after the first bishop in America).
So these were kindred folk in more ways than one, though they soon became
An older sister of Trissie Ann, Sarah Jane Page (born about 1842), had
already married J.H. Dunn's uncle John Dunn in 1858. (Though an uncle,
he was only about 10 years older than J.H. Dunn.) Still another sister
married another Dunn: Martha Caroline Page, born about 1846, married William
F. Dunn in 1861, and he is believed to be another uncle of John Henry Dunn's(25).
Another sister, Margaret Page, married Wesley Ballew, another Methodist
preacher of similar age.(26) Thus a Methodist
The marriage was performed in or near Ellijay, Georgia on December 18,
1866 by Samuel Allers. Dunn was two days short of his 18th birthday, but
a veteran. His bride was a little younger than himself.
On October 3, 1867, their first son was born and named Jesse Louis Dunn,
perhaps after a brother and sister of John Henry Dunn.(27)
The Dunns' children were born over a 12-year period in the postwar era.
Because Jesse Louis Dunn lost track of his own family, information I have
gathered is sparser than might be expected. For those seeking to trace
descendants of the brothers, I can offer additional information if they
contact me. The children were:
Jesse Louis Dunn.
My grandfather. As I will document in his own biography, the date of his
birth was October 3, 1867, not 1868 as he seems to have believed. He was
always called Louis or Lou, never Jesse, probably for J.H. Dunn's brother
Jesse and sister Louisa, though the "Jesse" may well originate with an
attempt to please the Wikle family, where Jesse R. Wikle was the richest
near relative of the Dunns. J. L. Dunn is profiled separately. He was presumably
born in the Ellijay-Cartecay area, as his birth is prior to his father's
preaching and thus traveling. He died January 7, 1932, in Springfield,
MO. For some chronological notes until a full biography is prepared for
my grandfather, click here.
Dunn. "Uncle Jim", born March 1, 1869. Later lived in Attalla,
Alabama. He married Letty Ann Palestine Dunn, daughter of his great-uncle
John R. Dunn (through his father) and his aunt Sarah Jane Page Dunn (through
his mother),thus marrying a woman who was both his first cousin and his
first cousin once removed. Their children thus have a double Dunn and double
Page ancestry. They had six children and I have been in touch with several.
His middle name "Gazaway" is appropriately from his grandfather Gazaway
Page, not only father of his mother but grandfather of his wife.
Samuel N. Dunn. "Uncle Sam", born November
16, 1870. Later lived in Gadsden, Alabama. I have yet to directly contact
descendants of Sam Dunn. He married twice, had two children by his first
wife (one of whom, Essie, was believed to be still alive in recent decades),
and four by a second wife, Alice. Sam Dunn died 31 March 1932 according
to his tombstone in the Ball Ground, Georgia cemetery.
Asbury Dunn. "Uncle Will", born December 22, 1872. He lived in
Gadsden, Alabama, married Augusta A. McGlathery in 1894, had nine children
and died in 1953. I am indebted to several descendants of Will Dunn for
family information through the years. The middle name "Asbury" is for the
first American Methodist bishop.
"Maggie" Dunn. "Aunt Maggie", born February 6, 1879; died in Ball
Ground, Georgia, 10 December 1968. Note that the four boys came relatively
closely together, then the one girl was born after an interval of over
six years. She married James Francis ("Mac") McKinney (24 March 1875-22
June 1964) in Fannin County, Georgia on 15 October 1899, and lived in Copperhill,
Tennessee and later Ball Ground, Georgia. McKinney ran a store in Ball
Ground later run by his son Howard(28);
son Guy(29) was a lawyer and postmaster
in Ball Ground. Maggie lived on into the 1960s and is the source of some
of the information provided here. She is the only member of this generation
I ever met (J.L. Dunn, my grandfather, died many years before I was born).
It should perhaps be noted that John Henry Dunn's uncle (and brother-in-law),
John Dunn (apparently John R.), also had sons named William A. and James
G. Dunn, though I am not sure in either case what the middle initials stood
for. The two John Dunns, only a decade at most apart in age, married sisters,
and were close in many other ways.
Revival During Reconstruction
The 1870 census for Gilmer County, Georgia, shows John Henry Dunn as
a blacksmith. This is consistent with Methodist church records: he was
only admitted "on trial" for the clergy in 1872, and the fact serves as
a reminder that he had had some sort of career before his call to the ministry.
His daughter, Maggie Dunn McKinney, told me in her old age that she had
never heard anything about him as a blacksmith and only remembered him
preaching -- but then Maggie was not even born until 1879. We know nothing
else about his blacksmithing, though the fact that he had a crippled hand
later in life might conceivably date from some accident at this time. Although
the location is listed as "Ellijay Post Office" in the census, as are most
of his other relatives' locations, there is some hint that he may have
been in Ellijay itself and not in the Cartecay area: he is several pages
removed from his other close relatives. But the census is not precise about
location, and so we cannot be sure where his anvil and forge -- assuming
he had them -- were located.
But religious revival was in the air, and had been since the Civil War.
The Cartecay Methodist Church, where both his grandfathers (John Dunn and
Henry Wikle) and his father-in-law (Gazaway Page) all worshiped, adhered
to the "southern" branch of Methodism. But in the wake of the war, in this
pro-Union bastion in northern Georgia, the "northern" (or simple Methodist
Episcopal, M.E.) Church began a new missionary effort to win adherents
both from the southern church and from other sects. The vanguard of this
movement was a man named James Lowry (Jim) Fowler. Fowler was a Unionist
during the war who, it was said, "preached with a pistol in his belt"(30)
and had come from DeKalb County, Georgia. After the split in the Methodist
Church in 1844-45, the antislavery Methodists (the "Northern" Methodists
or just Methodist Episcopal Church, as opposed to M.E. Church, South) gave
up all activities in the South. With the end of the Civil War, however,
large numbers of newly freed slaves provided the Northern Church a new
mission field, as did the "poor whites" of the South, particularly the
mountain whites in areas such as Northern Georgia.(31)
Fowler had entered the ministry in the Southern Methodist Church in
1860 and was fully ordained in 1865. Because local Methodists in Gilmer
County were known to be Union sympathizers, B.B. Quillian, prominent among
them, reportedly asked that Fowler be appionted, and he was.(32)
Soon, attracted by the beginnings of the "northern" Church's return to
the South, Fowler left for Tennessee and switched to the Holston Conference
of the northern church. Soon he was persuaded to return to the Ellijay
Circuit, but this time as a Northern Methodist. By 1867 he was becoming
its most prominent protagonist in large parts of northwestern Georgia.
It needs to be fully understood that the differences between the Northern
and Southern Methodists had primarily been over slavery; with the end of
the war Northern Methodism reappeared in the mountains of North Georgia
to evangelize among whites who had been pro-Union, and in other parts of
Georgia among black freedmen. Not surprisingly, to many southerners the
Northern Methodists were associated with Reconstruction, and equated by
many with the carpetbaggers (northerners who came south) and scalawags
(southerners who served Reconstruction governments). That led to much opposition,
particularly from the Ku Klux Klan; Robb's life of Fowler contains page
after page of anecdotes about threats from the Klan, Fowler's own having
preach with a pistol, and his counterthreats against the Klan after learning
that he was to be targeted. At least some of these threats occurred in
the Ellijay area.(33)
Early in this ministry Fowler became active in the Cartecay area. In
1867 one of the strongly Methodist Ellingtons, Lewis Duvall Ellington,
is said to have converted to northern Methodism during a sermon of Fowler's
at Cartecay(34), along with Asbury Fletcher,
and others doubtless did so at the same time, perhaps including the Dunns
and Pages. L.D. Ellington, it must be understood, was a highly influential
Methodist in the Cartecay community; his father, William Ellington, had
actually been ordained by Bishop Asbury himself and thus had impeccable
credentials, and the first Cartecay Methodist Church had been built on
the Ellington's land. The Dunns and other Methodists of Cartecay may well
have converted at this same, rather famous episode at Cartecay.
In any event, it was about the same year that Flint Hill Church was
organized just a bit to the north and east of Cartecay Methodist Church.
It became the "northern" church in the community and, presumably, the one
attended by the Dunns and Pages.(35) Flint
Hill Church was thus a clear "northern" rival to the "southern" Cartecay
Church where the Dunns had long been established. We know that in this
period "Old Uncle John" Dunn -- not the uncle but the grandfather of Rev.
J.H. Dunn -- was an extremely enthusiastic Northern Methodist who traveled
with Fowler for a time, "during Reconstruction" in the words of a letter
from Robb to my grandfather.(36) Just as
"Old Uncle John" was remembered for his enthusiasm, Robb remembered Fowler
for such phrases as "God's spirit holds them while I skin them".(37)
Clearly enough, it was in this context that John Henry Dunn decided
to pursue the ministry. Fowler was to be instrumental in recruiting a number
of fervid young Methodist preachers, one of them Dunn. Other Cartecay families,
particularly the Ellingtons, produced numerous ministers. The Ballew family
produced several, one of them John Wesley Ballew (known as Wesley) who
married J.H. Dunn's sister-in-law, Margaret Page. Old Gazaway Page thus
had two minister-sons-in-law (as well as three Dunns). A gallery of eight
young Methodist ministers shown in Robb's biography of Fowler includes
Dunn, one of the Ballews, one of the Ellingtons, T.H. Triplett, also from
the same general area, and four others.
In 1872 the Methodist Episcopal (M.E.) Church, the "Northern" Methodists,
admitted John Henry Dunn "On Trial". He was one of a "class of nine" admitted
during the annual Conference at Lloyd Street Church, Atlanta.(38)
We hear later that he did some of his first preaching at the old Fightingtown
Campground(39), the old location for camp
meetings near the Tennessee border where his family had once lived and
where he would later found the Epworth Seminary. It is unlikely that he
had had much, if any, formal religious training at this time, though this
is not certain and what later training he had is also not clear to me at
this time.(40) In 1873 the church founded
the Ellijay Seminary, intended, we are told for "neglected young white
people".(41) John Henry Dunn, who would
have been 25 at the time, was too old to attend, though he would later
be linked to the seminary (not apparently as a teacher though): in fact
in that same year he was assigned to preach at Dawsonville and Cumming,
Georgia, in the Atlanta District of the church.
In dealing with J.H. Dunn's ministerial assignments it must also be
kept in mind that these are circuits, and that often the minister
had to ride circuit to many different churches in the region. In the Dalton
District of the northern church, which embraced most of North Georgia and
was based at Ellijay though named for Dalton, there were only some 10 circuits
in 1878, but each served between two and seven churches.(42)
The next year, 1874, he was granted "Full Connection" in the Church
with the rank of Deacon. In 1875 he served at Hiwassee in the Dalton District.
This was apparently the Hiawassee in Towns County in northeastern Georgia,
some distance from Ellijay. In 1876-77 he served in Dawsonville, Georgia,
though in his own testimony in his pension application he lists himself
as being there in 1875. (This was written some years later in an attempt
to note his location at five year intervals. Given the Methodist minister's
natural tendency to move frequently, he may have given the government only
approximate citations of where he was every five years.) He is in Dawsonville
again in 1876-1877, and in Jasper, Georgia, in 1878 and 1879(43),
and then he appears (1880-82) in LaFayette, Georgia. His own testimony
also shows him at "Lafayette" in 1880.(44)
This is consistent with the fact that he is found in Walker County, Georgia
in the 1880 census, the first to list all five of his children.(45)
He clearly was there until 1882; in 1883 he turns up assigned to both Dalton
(his old Civil War haunts) and Resaca, in the same area. In 1884 he is
at Spring Place -- probably the locality of that name west of Chatsworth,
Georgia, not far east of Dalton -- and in 1885 at Resaca again. On the
other hand, his where-I-was-every-five-years entry in his pension application
lists him in Lawrenceville, Georgia, in 1885, which is not apparently noted
in the Conference reports.(46) In 1886
he is back in Dalton, though the Conference minutes seem to place him in
nearby Tunnel Hill by Fall 1886, and Lawrence lists him there in 1887.(47)
Meanwhile, in 1878 the Ellijay seminary set itself to become a preparatory
school for East Tennessee Wesleyan University in Athens, Tennessee. Probably
at least one of J.H. Dunn's children, perhaps more, attended the seminary
at Ellijay, which was really more of a coeducational Methodist high school.(48)
A Mysterious Expulsion
At this point in Rev. Dunn's career comes a mysterious interlude which
I have not been able, so far, to explain. According to the Northern Methodist
records, based on the Conference Minutes (basically short summaries of
each Conference's annual meeting which included lists like "Who has been
promoted?" and such, as well as lists of pastors), in 1887 Rev. J.H. Dunn
was "Expelled". As compiled by a modern Methodist historian, the next record
directly relating to him is in 1894, "Credentials Restored".
I first encountered this record in the work of Harold Lawrence, who
is the historian of Georgia Methodists (both the Northern and Southern
variety in Georgia, since the Churches are now of course united). In correspondence,
Lawrence could shed no further light on the conference reports, and so
far at least I have learned nothing more. Yet apparently for seven years,
Rev. J.H. Dunn was not in communion with the Conference of the Georgia
Methodist Episcopal ("northern Methodist") Church.
It is unlikely to have been any kind of scandal or profound difference,
since after his credentials were restored, he quickly rose in the church
and within 12 years served as District Superintendent, one rank below bishop.
Perhaps it was a doctrinal issue, or a north/south issue (though J.H. Dunn
seems to have always been avidly northern in all his sentiments). Other
Methodist ministers who left the Conference in this era usually did so
to join the Southern branch of the Church, but what we know of Dunn makes
There seems to be no reason to believe that he gave up preaching during
this suspension. Long before I learned of this expulsion from the Conference,
I told my Great-Aunt Maggie Dunn McKinney that her grandfather had listed
his employment in the 1870 census as blacksmith. She said that she of course
was not born then, but that she never remembered him doing anything but
preaching. She would have been only eight at the time of the 1887 expulsion,
but 15 when he was reinstated in 1894. Of course she may not have wanted
to raise the subject.
It seems likely, though, that he continued to preach, perhaps without
Conference approval. In 1890 he was in Tallapoosa, Georgia.(49)
It is not explicitly stated that he was preaching: this is one of those
five-year reports in his pension file. A March 5, 1892 document, submitted
as part of his pension file, lists him as being of Ellijay, however. The
1890 census was burned, so we have no official census statement of his
profession, or proof of his location in that year other than his statement
that he was in Tallapoosa. The evidence is too scant to really draw conclusions,
but it seems unlikely he was not preaching: he was in more than one place,
not close to each other, and there is no known reason why he would have
gone to Tallapoosa unless to preach. Perhaps he accepted an appointment
in an unapproved church, or some other such offense. At any rate, for some
reason, he was apparently not recognized by his church for seven years.
We simply do not know why. All I can say is that if there was scandal,
it has left no trace, so more likely it was some doctrinal, sectarian,
or other dispute. If any reader knows, I would love to hear from them.
Returning to the Fold
Since we do not know why Rev. J.H. Dunn was expelled from the conference
we also do not know what led to his credentials being restored in 1894.
Did he recant? Had whatever feud led to the expulsion been resolved, or
become moot? We just don't know.
From 1895-1898 he is listed as being assigned to the Toccoa area in
Ellijay District, apparently the area along the Toccoa (Ocoee) River, probably
in the area of what is now Fannin County, Georgia. This is most likely
the general area of the old Fightingtown Campground, of which more in a
few moments. He also, clearly, had close ties with Robb and the Ellijay
Seminary. And thus soon after his return to the full communion of his church
we find several important developments in his career.
First, in 1897 -- only four years or less after his credentials were
restored, he was elevated to the rank of Elder. Clearly, whatever had led
to his ouster from the official church had been not merely mended but eradicated.
This suggests that it may have been some personal or sectarian issue soon
put behind him.
Then a fire brought him a new opportunity. First we must introduce another
key figure in the history of North Georgian Northern Methodism: R.H. Robb.
If most of the North Georgia Methodists were of Ulster ancestry, "Doctor"
Robert Henry Robb was a real Ulsterman. Born some 20 miles from Londonderry,
he sailed for America at 18, in 1870.(50)
He was thus presumably about four years younger than J.H. Dunn. He arrived
in New York, moved to Philadelphia, and met the Methodist preacher Jerome
Spilman, who lured him to come to Georgia. He reached Dalton in 1875 --
Robb's anecdotes about John Dunn and other early settlers are secondhand,
but those about J.H. Dunn are firsthand -- and he actually lived for a
year in the home of James Lowry Fowler due to illness. In 1878 he took
over the Ellijay circuit. Robb's interaction with J.H. Dunn will be discussed
in a moment, but it must be noted that Robb, who lived until 1937 and died
at 85, became the historian of this period of North Georgia Northern Methodism.
His biography of Fowler, cited above in Footnote 20, Page 11, is a standard
work, though I do not now have access to a copy. A 1917 letter to my grandfather
added some details, and he was a major source for George Gordon Ward, author
of the Annals of Upper Georgia Centered in Gilmer County, the only
real Gilmer County history. Furthermore Robb's son, Dr. J.L. Robb, became
President of East Tennessee Wesleyan College in Athens, Tennessee, the
school to which the seminaries at Ellijay and Epworth fed their graduates.
Founding Epworth Seminary
Fate and perhaps a bit of church politics was to bring John Henry Dunn
back to the area where his grandfather had once owned the ferry, on the
Tennessee-Georgia border at McCaysville (Ga.)/Copperhill (Tenn.).
On the night of March 7 or 8, 1897, late at night, the Ellijay Seminary
burned.(51) It had been more than just
a Methodist academy: it was in effect the town's -- really Gilmer County's
-- main high school. (A southern Methodist school, Oakland Academy near
Cartecay, was another early school, and grew out of the early efforts of
the same Cartecay Methodists before the north-south split.) On March 9,
a mass public meeting was held at the courthouse to discuss the problem
of housing the schoolchildren. The school's dormitories and churches were
Apparently, for several months there was discussion about where to build
the new seminary, with Robb favoring keeping it at Ellijay and Dunn favoring
moving it to another, new location. On July 8 of that year, in George G.
Ward's words, "Rev. J.H. Dunn and his supporters transfer their educational
and religious activities to Fightingtown Camp Ground, now known as Epworth,
in Fannin county, about 18 miles north of Ellijay and four south of Copper
Hill, Tennessee."(52) As we will see below,
however, Rev. Dunn apparently intended to move to the place well over a
month before the date cited by Ward, as he had applied for a post office
In fact, Dunn and his followers seem to have decided, for whatever reason,
to establish the new seminary on the northern border of Georgia instead
of at Ellijay. There is clearly an implication in the version related by
Ward (based apparently on old Ellijay newspapers) of a disagreement between
Robb and Dunn, with Robb wanting to retain the Ellijay site and Dunn eager
to move. Years later, after Robb had himself followed Dunn to what became
Epworth, Robb remembered it without any implication of conflict:
Your father [addressing Jesse Louis Dunn and referring to J.H. Dunn]
did some of his first preaching at Fightingtown Camp-ground. When the Seminary
burned at Ellijay your father started Atalla Seminary on old Campground,
later on I came to his relief and we erected on same ground Epworth Seminary
which is doing fine work. Last year [meaning 1916] I preached at Ep.[worth]
and McCaysville -- Ga. side of Copper Hill ...(53)
Similarly, the story as recounted by Edmund J.Hammond (who may have
depended heavily on Robb) does not seem to imply any disagreement other
than the financial and legal problems in rebuilding in Ellijay:
During 1897 the Seminary at Ellijay burned without insurance protection.
Dr. R.H. Robb was then presiding elder of the Ellijay District and endeavored
to rebuild in the town. But lawsuits, growing out of earlier operations
of the school, had alienated some former friends. There was also opposition
to a public school being under the auspices of a religious denomination,
and the twon decided to build an academy of its own. Meanwhile, John Henry
Dunn had founded a new school at Attalla in Fannin County. Three years
later, when Dr. Robb left the district as presiding elder, he was made
financial agent for this school, the name of Attalla was changed to Epworth,
$5,000.00 was raised for a new building, and Epworth Seminary became the
definite educational center of the North Georgia work of the Conference.(54)
Atalla or Attalla Seminary, as Dunn named the new site, was only about
four miles or so from the old Dunn land on the Ocoee. Fightingtown Campground
(the name "Fightingtown" came from an old Indian playing field, as did
most of the "Ball Grounds" in the Cherokee country) had been the scene
of some of the earliest Methodist camp meetings in the northwestern part
of the state, and before and after the Civil War Fightingtown had been
known as a meeting place: we have just heard Robb say that Dunn "did some
of his first preaching" there.(55) The
site of the Campground is said to have been the present Epworth, Georgia,
Now he renamed the old camp meeting ground Attalla and planned to build
there. The name was apparently selected by J.H. Dunn himself. We know that
at least two of his three sons were living in the Gadsden/Attalla, Alabama
area before 1900 (James and William have been located in the 1900 census
there though I have not yet located Sam), so he may have chosen "Attalla"
for the place one or more of his sons were living. Later, it was Jim who
lived at Attalla, though in 1900 he is listed in the census under Gadsden.(57)
He not only named the place: he applied for post office status and became
its first postmaster, all the while being minister and seminary director.
(Mingling church and such minor offices of "state" as postmaster does not
seem to have bothered anyone much.) The History of Fannin County explains
the choice of the name Attalla by saying J.H. Dunn came from there; we
know he did not, so the best explanation seems to be that one or more of
his sons was already living in the Alabama town of that name and, for some
reason, it appealed to him.(58)
On June 10, 1897, Rev. Dunn applied to be postmaster of this new site.
This is almost a month before the July 8 date cited by Ward when Dunn and
his supporters moved to Fightingtown Campground, so he clearly had intended
the move for some time, had in fact already applied for a post office.
In fact, on May 28, the "Fourth Assistant Postmaster General" had dispatched
the form, apparently requested by Rev. Dunn, for application for postal
status.(59) This shows his intentions even
earlier. When John Henry Dunn filed his application for a Civil War pension,
one form consisting of questions about the pensioner's marriage was filled
out August 4, 1898 in Atalla, presumably here meaning the one in Georgia
(the later Epworth).(60) (The spellings
Atalla and Attalla seem to have been used interchangeably for the Georgia
location, though never for the Alabama town.) He was not formally appointed
postmaster, however, until October 5, 1897.(61)
Dunn established the seminary which would come to be known as Epworth,
and for the time being ran it himself. He apparently did not have ambitions
as a postmaster, however: in less than two years he handed that job over
to Frank M. Cagle, on June 15, 1899.(62)
Whether the nearness of the site to the old Dunn home was a factor in
Dunn's choice of the site we do not know. Robb, however, who that same
year had become Presiding Elder at Ellijay, eventually found himself besieged
by lawsuits and land problems, and finally in 1900 he agreed to sell the
Ellijay lots where the old seminary had stood and join Dunn in his enterprise.
The trustees, we hear, cut up the town lots belonging to the seminary for
sale. There had been no insurance, and years of effort by Robb had apparently
not raised enough to allow rebuilding. The lawsuits are not specified,
but there seems to be some reason to believe that they may have involved
Jerome Spilman, former Presiding Elder of the Ellijay District, who had
apparently gone over to Southern Methodism. This is not entirely clear,
however.(63) Ward adds, "There was the
usual inertia". Ward also says that the Editor of the local newspaper --
apparently a major source of his account -- objected to "denominationalism
and what they considered 'politics' in a public school system". Ward here
seems to be echoing Hammond's account, but it is worth noting that a typescript
of Ward's book So Robb decided to move to join Dunn at Fightingtown Campground,
joining Dunn's fledgling seminary. It is this that Robb, in his letter
to my grandfather, refers to when he says "Later on, I came to his relief".
The Attalla Seminary became Epworth. Epworth, that common Wesleyan name
(it had been the original estate of the Wesleys in England and became a
common Methodist name), eventually became the name of the locality around
the seminary. Today it is a town of moderate size in Fannin County.(64)
In 1897, the year in which all this was happening, Dunn is listed by
the Georgia Conference of the Methodist Church as a Trier of Appeals in
the Ellijay District: Tocco. Toccoa is the Georgia spelling for the river
known in Tennessee as Ocoee (though there is another Toccoa farther east
in Georgia), and this may refer to Dunn's formal assignment while he was
establishing the Epworth Seminary, or to an appointment prior to the developments
just described.(65) As noted earlier, Conference
reports appear to list him as being in "Toccoa" from 1895 to 1898, and
probably do not refer to the Toccoa in Eastern Georgia as they are part
of the Ellijay District.
Remember that neither his name of Attala (or Atalla) or the later name
of Epworth were official at that time, and the whole region along the Ocoee/Toccoa
may have been embraced by that "Tocco" (which also occurs at Toccoa in
other Methodist records). On the other hand if he was at "Toccoa" as early
as 1895, then the move of the seminary to Fightingtown when the Ellijay
Seminary burned may have been prompted by that already being his base.
(One also needs to remember that these Methodist preachers still rode
circuit: their ministerial posting is merely their home base and they
continued to preach in a broader region.)
So far as can be determined from the local histories, the original seminary
building at Attalla/Epworth was a simple rectangular church-like building
which, when the bigger Epworth Seminary "on the hill" was built a few years
later, became the Epworth Methodist Episcopal Church.(66)
It forms the core of today's Epworth United Methodist Church. (See the
illustrations.) A few years later the seminary "on the hill" was built
by Robb, where the Epworth, Georgia, elementary school now stands. By that
time, however, Dunn had apparently moved on.
Perhaps because he does not seem to have had a college education himself,
Dunn's seminary efforts seem to have usually been quickly superseded by
others, but his enthusiasm had founded what became the Epworth Seminary,
even though that institution came to be associated inextricably with Robb's
name. There is irony here: so far as the limited evidence available to
us suggests, Robb had struggled to recreate the burned seminary at Ellijay,
while Dunn had moved his own followers to the new site, started a seminary
there, named it, established its post office, and otherwise got things
going. Soon after Robb, in his own words, "came to [Dunn's] relief", Dunn
was assigned elsewhere. The Attalla Seminary was renamed Epworth in 1900,
apparently, but Dunn's name of Attalla for the post office survived marginally
longer: in 1901 James McCay petitioned the Post Office to change the town's
name from "Atalla" to "Epworth". This was granted.(67)
The name changed and McCay took over as postmaster, if the records are
accurate, on the same day, June 7, 1901.(68)
Superseded at Epworth by Robb, Dunn was assigned elsewhere. In 1899
he is at Morganton, near Blue Ridge, Georgia and in its circuit, though
this was before Robb came to Epworth and it is so close to Attalla/Epworth
that presumably Rev. Dunn maintained his links there. In 1900-1901, presumably
just after Robb came to Epworth, he appears in the Atlanta District, at
Rock Springs. Other evidence shows that this was Rock Springs Methodist
Church in the Buford, Georgia area, which was part of the church's Atlanta
District (as opposed to the Ellijay District). The church records of this
and other churches in the area of Buford show that he served for two years
at Rock Springs, three years at El Bethel Methodist Church, also in Gwinnett
County, Georgia, and was pastor of the New Prospect Methodist Church "which
is situated on the paved road from Buford to the Buford Dam" in 1900-1901.
Since all these appointments are in the same county and seem to
have to fit in the 1900-1901 time frame, one must assume that Rev. Dunn
served all three churches simultaneously.(69)
In 1902 Rev. Dunn is listed as serving at Mount Zion, and by another
source, in Tallapoosa,(70) where by his
own testimony he had earlier been in 1890. There is a Mount Zion not far
from Tallapoosa, and since we find him in Tallapoosa proper the following
year it seems likely he was in Mount Zion, perhaps the location of A Methodist
academy, in 1902. His earlier stay at Tallapoosa, it should be noted, was
during the period of expulsion from the Northern Methodist Conference.
yet he clearly had an affinity for the place, ultimately retiring -- and
dying -- there. In 1903-1904 he was definitely at Tallapoosa, though there
is a mysterious admission to the Alabama Conference in 1903, which apparently
led to no appointment.(71) He "located"
from the Georgia Conference in 1904, when as will be seen he was at East
Point, Georgia, and was readmitted to the Alabama Conference at Boaz beginning
November 30, 1905.(72)
Dunn himself, in this period of his rising influence as a preacher,
deserves some description. I have only two photographs of him. One, reproduced
a few pages back, shows a young, bearded preacher, presumably in the years
just after the war when he was beginning his career. The other, used as
the frontispiece of this biography, shows an older, heavier, more prosperous
looking man, clean shaven and with a receding hairline. It is probably
from after the turn of the century. One has to look closely at the two
pictures to convince oneself they are the same man: the face is much fuller
and clean-shaven in the later one, and only certain small features, the
brow line and the shape of the ears for example, indicate the identity
of the two.
In adulthood, he was described as five feet eight and one half inches
tall, with blue or gray eyes depending on the record, and dark, apparently
black or near black, hair. If his enlistment records are correct and he
was only five feet six when he joined the Union Army (See Above, Page 7),
it is a reminder of just how young he was (not much past 15) if he had
not yet reached his full height at the time. His handwriting is always
clear and legible but not ornate, and betrays some possible hint of the
rheumatism which troubled him, though never enough to make it hard to read.
I do not have any letter or document of sufficient length to give us a
sense of Rev. Dunn's rhetoric or writing style; if any descendant reading
this should have a copy of one of his sermons I would love a photocopy.
Though friends and others praised his piety and missionary zeal, no one
ever seems to have mentioned, or at any rate characterized, his preaching.
Nor do we hear much about the man's personality, except for the praise
often given a noted minister. His obituary says that "Dr. Dunn [the title
is of course honorary] was a broad-guaged [sic: meaning "gauged"],
liberal man, with a cheery word and an unquenchable optimism that helped
everyone with whom he was thrown in contact".(73)
Elsewhere we hear that he was "an able preacher, loyal to Christ and the
Church, standing for what he thought was right"(74).
One hopes he was all these things, of course, but obituaries of ministers
are not known for balanced descriptions.
The Unionist in Dixie
We know that Dunn was extremely proud of his relatively short and uneventful
service in the Union Army. At a time when the southern "Lost Cause" legend
was growing and pride in the Confederacy was widespread, Dunn seems to
have been unusually willing to proclaim his wartime allegiance. We know
that he was Commander of the Blue Ridge, Georgia chapter of the Grand Army
of the Republic, the Union Army Veterans' organization similar to the later
American Legion. This is probably during his period at Epworth/Attalla
Seminary, since Blue Ridge is the county seat of Fannin County and only
seven or eight miles southeast of Epworth, though he also served at Morganton,
even closer. Perhaps his GAR service coincided with both these ministries.
It is particularly interesting that the Blue Ridge chapter had the nerve
to call itself the Sherman Post, which either indicates just how pro-Union
northern Georgia was or just how daring -- given Sherman's reputation generally
in Georgia -- these Union veterans were. In fact, there were only two "native"
GAR posts in the whole state of Georgia, both in the mountain north: the
Blue Ridge Post in Jasper in Pickens County, and the Sherman Post in Blue
Ridge.(75) (The double usage of "Blue Ridge"
is of course confusing, and both places were well known to J.H. Dunn.)
We also hear that in other periods of his life he "wore with honor the
button of the Grand Army of the Republic".(76)
If not exactly wearing his politics on his sleeve, he wore it on his lapel,
and some at least of his colleagues considered this notable in turn-of-the-century
Northern Methodists as a whole of course were out of step with the general
"Lost Cause" mythology of the postwar South, and although from the 1870s
the white and black Northern Methodists had separate Conferences, it is
said that Dunn did preach in black churches. (This is based on an oral
anecdote from a descendant whose grandmother remembered being taken to
here him preach in a "colored" church.(77)
An 1890s Glimpse
During this period Dunn's health had not been good, as it apparently
had not been since youth: his obituary refers to his death from "Some disease
of the heart of which symptoms had manifested themselves since he was a
young man"(78) Most of the evidence we
have is, admittedly, from the medical documents submitted to claim a Civil
War pension, and it may have been in Dunn's interest to make his ailments
sound severe, but there is no reason to doubt that he suffered from a variety
of afflictions, including some repercussions from his measles and smallpox
during the war. He suffered from angina and this must be the heart problem
troubling him since he was "a young man", though it may have been a result
of these wartime diseases.
In 1879, he contracted kidney disease, according to an affidavit he
filed in his pension papers in 1892.(79)
An Ellijay doctor wrote this pessimistic assessment for his pension claim
in 1895 (with spelling and punctuation unchanged):
...chronic inflammation of liver causing indigestion and chronic dirrhea
with palpitation of the Heart also Chronic inflammation (Bright Disease
of Kidney and chronic asticter rheumatism From the above Simtoms he is
unable to perform manual Labor without severe pain and suffering. In my
opinion from the above Simtoms he is totally disabled.(80)
(Bright's Disease, a kidney disease now recognized as not a real disease
but a set of symptoms of various other complaints, also was a cause of
my grandfather J.L. Dunn's death.)
Earlier, on June 4, 1891, two acquaintances (actually, one an in-law),
Anderson Moss and J. W. Duckett, testified that Rev. Dunn was afflicted
by "rheumatism, disease of heart and injury to hand". Anderson Moss testified
that he had:
known J.H. Dunn for four years and have often heard him complain of
heart disease and have known him to quit work on account of disability
I have seen his Broken hand & heard him complain of it have seen him
stretch up and gasp for a good Breath he is not able to do hard work.
J.W. Duckett is, almost certainly, the John W. Duckett (1840-1899) who
married Letty Jane Dunn, sister of J.H. Dunn, and was thus Dunn's brother-in-law.
This is nowhere stated in his affidavit, however, so -- again without impugning
Dunn's good Methodist probity -- one must wonder if Duckett might have
exaggerated for effect to the government pension folks. Duckett said that
he had (spelling as original)
none [known] J.H. Dunn for more 20 yerse(81)
& have heard him complain of Hart trouble for some 10 yers and allso
Rheumatism Allso Has a Cripld Hand which is detramental to hard labor.(82)
Did the crippled hand come from blacksmithing days, perhaps, or from
some mishap riding circuit? There is no clue. Had it been war-related this
would have been stated in the affidavit, certainly. And of course, this
is his brother-in-law writing.
In 1903 Dunn was briefly admitted to the Alabama Conference of the Methodist
church, but in 1904 was back in Georgia, at East Point in the Atlanta suburbs.
It was while he was at East Point that his wife Trissie Ann died suddenly.
As the story was related to me by his daughter, Dunn traveled to and
from work by streetcar, coming home at the same time each night. He later
expressed surprise that on the morning of May 8, 1904, his wife asked him
what time he expected to be home, since he always arrived at the same time.
While he was away, some of Trissie Ann's friends came to visit her. A few
minutes after they arrived, she fell to the floor in the hall, complaining
of a headache. A nephew was sent for water, thinking she had hurt her head
while falling. In fact it was a stroke -- "apoplexy". When Reverend Dunn
came back that afternoon after preaching, some men met him at the streetcar
stop and rushed him to his wife's side. All she said to him was that her
head hurt and that the pain was the worst she had ever felt. She died that
Trissie Ann is reportedly buried in Hollywood Cemetery on the edge of
Atlanta, though neither I nor relatives have yet located her grave.(84)
I have not located a photo of her. Her daughter Maggie McKinney told me
she once sent her only photo off to be copied by a photographer and it
was never returned.
At the time Trissie Ann died, all the children were grown. Louis Dunn
was already in Missouri. Maggie had married and was living at Copperhill,
Tennessee. The other sons were living in Gadsden and Attalla, Alabama --
at any rate Will and Jim were there already, and I suspect but cannot confirm
that Sam was. He certainly was a decade later.
Dunn's Second Marriage
Perhaps loneliness is the reason why J.H. Dunn remarried with what today
would seem almost indecorous haste. Or perhaps it was a minister's need
for a helpmate socially. On August 14, 1904, three months and a week after
Trissie Ann's death, Dunn married Metta (Mettie) Dodd in Dublin, Georgia.(85)
At the time, the marriage of a 56-year-old minister so soon after his wife's
sudden death probably did not seem as hasty as it does now, for he no doubt
needed a wife, met someone he cared for, and in the time and given his
age position, was hardly able to conduct an extended courtship. Dublin,
where the marriage occurred, is far to the southeast of Atlanta and in
a part of Georgia Dunn is never known to have frequented, so one presumes
it was Metta's hometown but that the couple met in Atlanta. This (like
most of this paragraph) is actually just guesswork based on the date and
place of the marriage. But we must remember that in an era when wives played
the role of cook and housekeeper and many men had never had to fend for
themselves, quick remarriage after being made a widower was not uncommon:
men felt they needed a helpmate at home, however soon after the death of
the wife they had come to depend on.
Whatever the reason for the quick remarriage, Dunn also did not remain
long in Georgia. Having already been admitted briefly to the Alabama Conference
of the Church in 1903, he was readmitted at Boaz, Alabama beginning November
30, 1905.(86) It may be that he was seeking
to be near his children in the Gadsden-Attalla area. He may have had other
reasons to be attracted to the area: after all, he named his seminary in
northern Georgia "Attala", apparently after Attalla, Alabama.
Once in Alabama, Dunn's prominence increased. At the same Conference
of the Church, in Boaz, Alabama, at which John Henry Dunn was readmitted
to the Alabama Conference, the mayor of Edwardsville, Alabama, offered
the church that town's school facilities for a seminary. (87)
While holding other appointments, Dunn clearly was connected with this
seminary (also sometimes called "Academy" or "Institute"), a northern Methodist
institution which disappeared after the reunification of the church. At
the church's 1907 Conference, he is listed as representing the seminary.(88)
Edwardsville lies east of Anniston on the road towards Tallapoosa, and
not far from Fruithurst, Alabama, where Dunn later lived as well.
But we know that in the winter of 1906 he was made pastor of St. Paul's
Church in Anniston, Alabama. It is referred to as if it were a sizeable
church; and it led to his promotion, but there is no Saint Paul's Church
(Methodist or otherwise) in the Anniston directory today. The Directory
for 1913-14 lists Saint Paul's at 1309 Leighton Avenue in Anniston. There
appears to be no building there today, though there is a First Christian
Church at 1327 Leighton. Most likely the parish was merged when the northern
and southern churches united, and the old name disappeared.(89)
He held the pastorship at Saint Paul's for a year. Then, apparently
directly from a successful ministry in that pulpit, he was chosen "against
his wishes" as District Superintendent of the Anniston District. In Methodist
hierarchy, the District Superintendent is a rank just below that of bishop.
We are told that he "so demonstrated his fitness for that position that
he was reassigned as superintendent till the four-year limit was up."(90)
The Conference Minutes confirm that Dunn was Superintendent, Anniston
District, in 1908, 1909, and 1910. I do not have a confirmation for 1911
but it seems to follow from the above remarks, and his church obituary
confirms that he served for four years(91).
He may, also, have remained as pastor of Saint Paul's; even after we know
he had retired, the 1913-1914 edition of Polk's City Directory for Anniston
still lists him as the pastor at Saint Paul's. He may have held that post
until his retirement in 1912.(92) We also
hear in a report of the Conference of 1908 that "Mrs. J.H. Dunn", Metta
Dodd Dunn, was among those present at the meeting of the "Laymen's Association"
in conjunction with the Conference.(93)
During this period he lived first in Anniston, probably at 1131 Wilmer
Avenue in Anniston,(94) and later on a
farm at Peek's Hill, outside Anniston in Calhoun County.(95)
The address on Wilmer Avenue would have been about two blocks west and
a bit over a block south of Saint Paul's church, presumably chosen for
its convenience, or perhaps it was a parish house.(96)
In 1912 Dunn, 64 and in ill health, was now ready to retire from the active ministry, but first he was assigned to the Gulf District as a Sunday School Missionary.(97) A new pension declaration filed under an Act of May 11, 1912 and dated May 22, 1912 listed Dunn as being a resident of Fruithurst, Cleburne County, Alabama. This is the county between Anniston, Ala. and Tallapoosa, Ga., but including neither city. Fruithurst lies between them, and not far from the Edwardsville Seminary, with which Dunn seems to have earlier had some connection.
By 1913 Dunn was listed on the retired list of the Methodist Church,
according to the Conference Minutes. On retirement, he returned to Georgia,
settling in Tallapoosa, where he had served at least twice earlier. Tallapoosa
actually lies just over the Georgia line from Anniston, between 30 and
40 miles away, and just over the line from Cleburne County, where he had
been in 1912.
Early in 1914 Dunn, now retired and reasonably well-fixed, decided to
visit all of his children. Maggie was at Copperhill(98),
married to her merchant husband Francis "Mac" McKinney, in the old Dunn
country along the Ocoee. Jim was at Attalla, Alabama, and both Sam and
Will were at Gadsden in that same state. They, of course, were close enough
that he must have been in regular contact. Jesse Louis Dunn was by this
time in Arkadelphia, Arkansas(99), and
it was Rev. Dunn's intention to make a trip to the West as well. He sold
his home in Tallapoosa, apparently intending eventually to live in Gadsden
with his sons after making his grand trip. He stored all his furniture,
and wrote the McKinneys to expect him in Copperhill in time for dinner.
His plan was then to go on to Gadsden and then to Arkansas. He had never
traveled to the west before.
On the morning of his scheduled departure, March 11, 1914, it was raining.
Dunn dropped Mettie off at a friend's house to keep her dry, and continued
into downtown Tallapoosa to make the necessary arrangements. He entered
the Bank of Tallapoosa, intending to withdraw his money for the trip. Bank
lines then were presumably not as long as today, but Dunn may have been
in the situation of so many men who have just retired after years of pressure
and hard work: very vulnerable to heart attack. While waiting in the lobby
of the bank, he suddenly collapsed to the floor.(100)
A doctor summoned to his side said that he died of "acute indigestion
and heart trouble (angina pectoris)".(101)
Clearly it was a heart attack. He never made it to dinner with Maggie,
or to visit his son Louis in the West. His church obituary noted that "The
summons of death came suddenly, and by one short step he passed into the
realms of eternal glory".(102)
Reverend John Henry Dunn was buried in a half-lot in a Tallapoosa Cemetery,
a cemetery also called Hollywood, but not the one near Atlanta where Trissie
Ann had been buried. (The profusion of Hollywood Cemeteries in the South
in the late 19th century is probably due to the fame of Richmond's Hollywood
Cemetery, where many of the heroes of the Confederacy lie buried. It is
therefore ironic that a good Union man like Rev. Dunn, and his good Unionist
wife, both lie in Hollywood Cemeteries.) Mettie moved to Attalla, Alabama
after his death, remarried in the 1920s and is buried elsewhere.
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1. . The date is that given on his tombstone, on a 1910 voter registration receipt (which indicates he provided it), in Methodist church records and in family tradition. There would be no reason to question it at all if it were not for the pension application data.
2. . The military and pension records are discussed more fully below. The enlistment records are found in the National Archives under the Compiled Service Records for Company A, First Battalion Georgia Infantry (Union). The pension records are under John H. Dunn (Certificate no. 785223).
3. . "Copperhill" is the present spelling. In the 19th century it was almost invariably spelled "Copper Hill"; it was the US Post Office's attempts to combine two word names into one which led to the present spelling. For consistency between past and present I have used "Copperhill" except in direct quotations, but it would have been "Copper Hill" to our ancestors.
4. . This from a set of notes by Roy G. Lillard on the early history of Copperhill, provided by the Copper Basin Museum in Ducktown, Tennessee. These notes appear almost verbatim, as well, in the book The Heritage of Polk County, Tennessee 1839-1997 Polk County Historical and Genealogical Society, 1997, pp. 59-60.
5. . The rather confusing chronology of the Dunns on the Ocoee is discussed in the biographies of J.H. Dunn's father and grandfather. All the existing evidence points to the period 1846-1856 for their residence at what is now Copperhill, TN, and to James Dunn having lived there only until about 1849.
6. .Rabun County Georgia, Deed Book B, pages 161-162, "John Dun" to Baily Dover. The deed is dated 25 December 1834 (yes, Christmas) but was not recorded until 25 September 1838.
7. . The date appears in a short historical profile of the Church which has appeared in several places, including the Church website at http://www.gbgm-umc.org/CartecayGA/history/, and in similar form in Gilmer County, Georgia, Heritage Book (Waynesville, NC, 1996), p. 17, entry 52. I have seen it reproduced elsewhere as well.
8. . George G. Ward, Annals of Upper Georgia Centered in Gilmer County (Carrollton, Georgia: 1965; reprinted Nashville, TN: 1994), p. 91.
9. . "Poor of 932 District" for 1858, Gilmer County Court of Ordinary, Poor School Miscellaneous Records Book, 1852-1863, p. 27.
10. . The Tickanetley entry is in Gilmer County Court of Ordinary, Poor School Miscellaneous Records Book, 1852-1863, p. 18, "Poor of the 864 District".
11. . There is considerable anecdotal material on Gilmer County's war experience in George G. Ward's Annals, Chapter 14, "War Clouds, Growing Perplexities", pp. 340ff.
12. . Oral tradition from the late Maggie Dunn McKinney, passed to me in 1966.
13. . The source for this is Joyce Taylor's article on the "Carpenter Family" in Facets of Fannin: A History of Fannin County, Georgia, Dallas, Texas, 1989, p. 229. She cites Jesse Houston Carpenter in History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas, which I have not seen. Emanuel Morton Carpenter married Elizabeth Elvira Wikle, sister of Susan Wikle who married James Dunn. I believe this is the same Joyce Taylor with whom I corresponded on the Wikle family back in the 1960s, when she lived in Oklahoma, as she may still.
14. . For a detailed account of the guerrilla-style units, see Robert S. Davis, Jr. with Bill Kinsland, "Forgotten Union Guerrillas of the North Georgia Mountains", A North Georgia Journal of History (Woodstock, GA), 1989, an article which appears online at http://www.izzy.net/~michaelg/n-ga1.htm. Also see Robert S. Davis, Jr., "Memoirs of a Partisan War", from The Georgia Historical Quarterly, Spring 1996, which also appears online at http://www.izzy.net/~michaelg/darnell.htm.
15. . Davis, "Forgotten Union Guerrillas", online version.
16. . Ward, Annals, p. 344.
17. . See the obituary cited below in Footnote 67, Page 26.
18. . The source for his enlistment are his service records, Compiled Service Records, 1 Battalion Ga. Infantry (Union), US National Archives. His height in later life is derived from his pension application papers.
19. . Davis, "Forgotten Union Guerrillas", the online version being the one I used.
20. . These dates are taken from E.B. Long and Barbara Long, The Civil War Day by Day, 1971, under the dates given.
21. . The count here is derived from the Compiled Service Records via Broadfoot Publishing Company's Roster of Union Soldiers, 1861-1865, Volume 23: Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas, Louisiana, North Carolina, Texas, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi (Wilmington, NC: 1998). The Georgia list (all of them in the 1st Battalion, the only recognized Georgia Union unit) occupies a single page. The count for Company A may be inaccurate because several entries do not indicate whether they belong to Company A or B. (There were only two companies in the battalion.) I have also examined the microfilm of the original compiled service records, but the count given here is from the Broadfoot reference work.
22. . The "Smallpox Hospital or Post Hospital" annotation is on a card abstracting the May/June 1865 muster roll of the unit in the Compiled Service Records. The statement that he had measles and smallpox while in the service is in a letter written from Attalla, Alabama dated May 26, 1914 to the Commissioner of Pensions in Washington, in which J.H. Dunn's widow and second wife, Metta Dunn, seeks to determine if she qualifies for a widow's pension. It is found in the pension files already cited.
23. . According to the 1900 census for Lawrenceville, Gwinnett County, GA.
24. . Fuller material on the Page family is forthcoming. Trissie Ann's parents were Gazaway Page (c. 1817-1883) and Nancy (abt. 1814-before 1880), maiden name unknown.
25. . A William Dunn does appear in the family of the first John Dunn, and Guy Dunn McKinney once wrote me that "two of grandmother's sisters married grandfather's uncles" or words to that effect.
26. . For some reason the record does not appear in the Gilmer County marriage record books. The fullest record of the marriage surviving seems to be that in Dunn's August 4, 1898 submission of a form as part of the pension process. The form is in the pension files and dated "Atalla, Georgia" (the later Epworth, Georgia, which Dunn apparently named himself for Attalla, Alabama, as will be discussed below). The other Page marriages are based on the Gilmer County marriage records (which seem to not include the J.H. Dunn marriage), along with a combination of family tradition with the names taken from various US census records.
27. . The dates generally are from the pension records. A Bible belonging to Jesse Louis Dunn -- not a family Bible but a study bible -- listed his own birthdate as October 3, 1868, but one is not one's own best witness to one's birth. John Henry Dunn listed Jesse Louis' birthdate as 1867 in his pension files, and John Henry Dunn's second son, James G., was born March 1, 1869. More than five months is needed between children of the same mother, so the 1867 date must prevail. The 1870 census lists Jesse Louis as two and James G. as one.
28. . John Howard McKinney, 16 November 1900-22 October 1986. Howard married Grace Humphrey (b. 31 January 1901; still living 1998), and they had three daughters. The dates for all the McKinneys are derived from their tombstones in the Ball Ground, Georgia, cemetery.
29. . Guy Dunn McKinney, 30 April 1914-9 July 1982. Guy never married.
30. . Ward, Annals, 235.
31. . On the history generally, see Edmund J. Hammond, The Methodist Episcopal Church in Georgia, first published 1935, modern reprint (Gretna, Louisiana: Firebird Press, 2000).
32. . On Fowler, the only full biographical sketch is R.H. Robb, D.D., A Biographical Sketch of Rev. James Lowry Fowler, The Hero of the Reorganization in Georgia, Western Methodist Book Concern, Cincinnati, Ohio, no date. Robb's little book was formerly known in our Dunn family; my Uncle John L. Dunn had a copy, as did my cousin Guy Dunn McKinney. But those copies have dropped from sight, and my citations here are based on a photocopy of a microfilm copy held in the Library of Congress (LC Microfilm 84/6066). For shorter treatments of Fowler see George Gordon Ward, Annals of Upper Georgia Centered in Gilmer County, Carrollton, Ga., 1965, p. 233, and Hammond, Methodist Episcopal Church in Georgia, 113-115.
33. . Robb, Biographical Sketch, pages 39-47 offers a number of anecdotes about Fowler's problems with the Klan.
34. . Ward, Annals, 90, and again on 230.
35. . Ward Annals, 91, says that Flint Hill Church was organized by Fowler about 1867 and the present building built about 1870. The Gilmer County, Georgia, Heritage Book (Waynesville, NC, 1996), p. 22, entry 71, says its first records were dated 1878. This source also notes that it was being used in the 1990s as a mission church by the First Baptist Church of Ellijay. In 1997 the sign read "Flint Hill Community Church" (author's visit).
36. . This is dealt with more fully in the biography of John Dunn, grandfather of John Henry Dunn.
37. . Robb, Biographical Sketch, 48.
38. . Edmund J. Hammond, The Methodist Episcopal Church in Georgia, first published 1935, modern reprint (Gretna, Louisiana: Firebird Press, 2000), p. 133; also Harold Lawrence, Methodist Preachers in Georgia, 1783-1900, 1984, p. 158. Lawrence drew most of his information from Conference reports. Please note that a later work by Lawrence, Methodist Preachers in Georgia 1783-1900: A Supplement (Milledgeville, 1995), p. 54, which contains considerably more on Rev. J.H. Dunn, is not an independent source as the additional material on Dunn published there by Lawrence was provided by me.
39. . Letter to Jesse Louis Dunn from R.H. Robb, full citation below in footnote 20, Page 11.
40. . Harold Lawrence, Methodist Preachers in Georgia, 1783-1900, 1984, p. 158. His sources are the Georgia Conference annual reports. (Correspondence with Rev. Lawrence.)
41. . Ward, Annals, 172.
42. . These numbers are based on Minutes of the Annual Conferences of the Methodist Episcopal Church: Fall Conferences of 1878 (New York: n.d.), p. 78 appearing to show 10 circuits, while pp. 188-189 shows only eight but lists from two to seven church buildings each.
43. .Harold Lawrence's Methodist Preachers in Georgia 1783-1900, p. 158, the source for most of Dunn's appointments, gives only 1879; the 1878 date is provided by the Minutes of the Annual Conferences for 1878, already cited above.
44. . Lawrence, Methodist Preachers in Georgia, 158; Pension application for Dunn's own citation of Lafayette, Ga. as home in 1880.
45. . 1880 Federal Census for Georgia, Walker County, 943 District (Wilson's), p. 11 (388), Dwelling and Family Number 94. The ages of the children are mostly right but Maggie appears to be listed as three when she should have been one.
46. . Pension files; earlier records from Lawrence, Methodist Preachers, 158; for 1886, Minutes of the Annual Conferences of the Methodist Episcopal Church: Fall Conferences of 1886, (New York and Cincinnati: n.d. [1886?]), p. 322.
47. . Lawrence, Methodist Preachers, 158.
48. . A Willie Dunn and an Effie Dunn are listed as having good deportment and grades in 1895. See Ward, Annals, 182. William A. Dunn, son of John R. Dunn, would have been about 25 and too old, so the odds are this is William A. Dunn, son of John Henry Dunn, who would have been about 13 at the time. Known Effies (so far) do not seem to fit the age grouping. Of course, there could have been other Willie Dunns.
49. . In the pension application, which as previously noted appears to give his whereabouts in five year intervals (1880, 1885, 1890, and so on) rather than a complete list.
50. . The details here are from Ward, Annals, 296. Ward is often sloppy with his details, but he knew Robb very well and Robb was a major source for his Methodist materials.
51. . Ward, Annals, 182, first dates it to 10:30 pm on March 7, then quotes approvingly a version that puts it between 11 pm and midnight on Monday, March 8.
52. Ward, Annals, p. 182-183.
53. . Letter from R. H. Robb, McCaysville, Ga., to Jesse Louis Dunn, dated April 10, 1917. I believe the original was in the possession of my late Uncle John L. Dunn. A photocopy is in my possession.
54. . Edmund J. Hammond, The Methodist Episcopal Church in Georgia, originally published 1935, modern reprint edition (Gretna, LA: Firebird Press, 2000), pp. 164-165.
55. . So in Ward's Annals, 183, based on both Robb himself and surviving Ellijay newspapers.
56. . Lorene Payne, "Camp Meetings", in K. Thompson, editor, Touching Home: A Collection of History and Folklore from the Copper Basin, Fannin County Area (Published by Kathy Thompson, 1976), p. 155. This is a small, privately published work by the West Fannin (Ga.) High School photojournalism class, attempting to collect local memories and folklore in the manner of the Foxfire series.
57. . 1900 Census for Etowah County, Alabama, Precinct 1, Enumeration District 147, Sheet 16, Dwelling 326, Family 355, on Washington Street in Gadsden. No street number is given.
58. . The source for both the fact of his postmastership and the statement that he came from Attalla, Alabama is Facets of Fannin, already cited. On Fightingtown Campground, see p. 75 (under the town of Epworth) and 134-135 (Epworth United Methodist Church). On the postmastership, see pp. 76-77.
59. . All this post office data from Facets of Fannin, "Epworth, Georgia, Post Office", pp. 76-77.
60. . Pension files.
61. . Facets of Fannin,, p. 77.
62. . Facets of Fannin, p. 77.
63. . I must confess that this is an attempt on my part to read between the lines in several places. Ward (Annals, 172-173) notes that Spilman was instrumental in founding the Seminary, but a typescript of Ward's book prior to publication includes perhaps two words blackened out that probably contained a name, following the words "Lawsuits growing out of the early operation of the school [blacked-out words] further added to its financial handicaps". (Ward, Annals, p. 183; there is a microfilmed version of a typescript available from the LDS Library's microfilm collection which has the blacked out words at this point in the text.)
64. . It is worth noting that the Dunn's Creek and Dunn's Mill Creek near Epworth are not named for our immediate Dunns. The North Carolina family which settled that area may be related, but this is not yet certain. They also appear to have had a reputation for moonshining, which probably would have scandalized our good Methodist kin.
65. . Based on the Combined Minutes of the Annual Conferences, communicated by Mrs. Paul Sutton, Librarian, Association of Methodist Historical Societies, Lake Junaluska, North Carolina, Sept. 14, 1964. Hereafter Conference Minutes.
66. . The Fannin County history, Facets of Fannin, under the Epworth United Methodist Church heading, lists "Billy Sullivan" as the pastor in 1897-98, while Dunn was founding the seminary. It lists "T.H. Dunn" (sic, but has it correct elsewhere) as the church's pastor in 1898, with S.D. Tuttle taking over in 1899. Facets of Fannin, p. 135.
67. . Facets of Fannin, p. 77.
68. . Facets of Fannin, p. 77. There seem to be too many things happening on the same day here, which may come from an oversimplification on the part of the county history.
69. . James C. Flanigan, History of Gwinnett County, Georgia, 1818-1960, Volume II, Hapeville, GA 1959, contains short profiles of the churches: on p. 114 Dunn is listed among those shown as having performed marriages in in the year 1900; for El Bethel Methodist Church, the profile by L. R. Kerlin on pp. 236-237 mentions Dunn on p. 237; New Prospect Methodist Church is dealt with by Mrs. Idus Kennedy on pp. 265ff., mentioning Dunn on 266; for Rock Springs see the profile by Mrs. George W. Pharr on pp. 273-274, with Dunn on p. 273.
70. . Mount Zion from Lawrence's Methodist Preachers; which puts him in Tallapoosa 1903-04; the earlier correspondence on Methodist records by Sutton, cited above as Conference Minutes, had put him in Tallapoosa in 1902.
71. . Lawrence, Methodist Preachers, 158; Lawrence, Methodist Preachers in Georgia, 1783-1900: A Supplement, Milledgeville, 1995, p. 54, though I suspect this latter may have come from me citing Lazenby, History of Methodism in Alabama and West Florida, p. 1151.
72. .Lazenby, History of Methodism in Alabama and West Florida, p. 575.
73. . From the Anniston, Alabama newspaper obituary which we will quote frequently and which is cited in full in Footnote 67, Page 26.
74. . Marion Elias Lazenby, History of Methodism in Alabama and West Florida, 1960, p. 655, abstracting what is almost certainly the Conference obituary for Rev. J.H. Dunn.
75. .Robert S. Davis, Jr., "Memoirs of a Partisan War", from The Georgia Historical Quarterly, Spring 1996, quoting a speech by Sion Darnell, apparently the founder of the posts and later President of the GAR's Georgia Department; the speech which also appears online at http://www.izzy.net/~michaelg/darnell.htm. The host of the website has added a reference to J.H. Dunn and an E-mail link to me following correspondence.
76. . Lazenby, History, p. 655, in the same obituary cited above. Also anecdotal material from Maggie Dunn McKinney.
77. . I believe this anecdote was told me by one of the descendants of Rev. Dunn's son James G. Dunn.
78. . From the obituary cited fully in Footnote 67, Page 26.
79. ."General Affidavit for Any Purpose", March 5, 1892, J. H. Dunn pension papers.
80. . James M. Bearden, M.D., certificate dated March 6, 1895 following an examination of J.H. Dunn that day; on letterhead of J.M. & J.B. Bearden, Drugs and Medicines, Ellijay, Georgia. In the pension files.
81. . John W. Duckett married Letty Jane Dunn in Pickens County, Georgia, 21 June 1885 (Pickens County Loose Marriage Records), but the Ducketts had long lived near Dunn's father James Dunn in the Hinton, Georgia area of Pickens County, and James M. Duckett, apparently a brother of John W., had married another sister of J.H. Dunn, Mary E. Dunn, on 4 October 1868. in Gilmer County (Gilmer County Marriage Records). James and Mary Dunn Duckett are great-grandparents of Governor Roy E. Barnes of Georgia, who is thus my third cousin.
82. . Moss' and Duckett's remarks are both on "General Affidavit for Any Purpose", June 4, 1891, J.H. Dunn pension papers.
83. . The story was told to me by J.H. Dunn's daughter, Maggie Dunn McKinney (1879-1968), in 1967 when the late Mrs. McKinney was about 88.
84. . Guy D. McKinney also wrote me that he tried unsuccessfully to locate her grave, the cemetery records being incomplete.
85. . Certificate, Office of Ordinary, Laurens County, Ga., dated 20 June 1914, in support of Mettie Dodd Dunn's claim to her husband's pension, pension papers.
86. . Lazenby, History of Methodism in Alabama and West Florida, 1960, 575. Also letter from A.B. Elizer, North Georgia Conference Historical Society, Cartersville, Georgia, September 10, 1965 to the author. Hereafter Elizer Letter.
87. . Lazenby, History, 575.
88. . Lazenby, 576.Elizer letter. He is also listed as being at Edwardsville in 1907 in Sutton's letter based on the Conference Minutes.
89. . For the address see Polk's 1913-1914 Anniston City Directory, Birmingham, AL, 1913, p. 22.
90. . Obituary, "Broad-Gauged Minister Dropped Dead Yesterday" from an Anniston, Alabama newspaper. Title of paper not marked on the clipping (photocopy in my possession: original I believe from John L. Dunn), but from evidence on the back of the clipping it most likely was the Anniston Star and Hot Blast, presumably (due to "yesterday" in the headline) from March 12, 1914. Hereafter "Obituary". There are errors, such as the statement that he was born in Georgia and served in a Kentucky regiment. Kentucky was the nearest Union state west of the mountains, but there were Tennessee and (as we know) even Georgia Union troops. The phrase "against his wishes" occurs in this obituary.
91. . Lazenby, History of Methodism in Alabama and West Florida, p. 655. Also see p. 580, and the Elizer letter.
92. . Polk's 1913-1914 Anniston City Directory, cited above, Footnote 66, Page 26.
93. . Lazenby, History, p. 578-579.
94. . A cover envelope for his pension files carrying the date of 23 June 1892 carries this address in Anniston, but it is written in a different hand and different ink and obviously sometime after the original cover was written. It is certain he was not living in Anniston that early. It presumably represented a change of address added later, so the date is not exactly determinable.
95. . Obituary.
96. . The distances are based on those addresses on modern maps. I do not know if the house is standing.
97. . Conference Minutes.
98. . It was then usually spelled Copper Hill. The US Post Office insisted on combining many two word names into one, and the modern spelling Copperhill seems to come from the Postal pressures, not the local preference.
99. . This statement is mostly based on the note in the Obituary that J.L. Dunn was of Arkansas, and the knowledge from my father that sometime in his infancy his father spent a year or two in Arkadelphia. I do not know the precise years of J.L. Dunn's residence in Arkansas.
100. . Account of Maggie Dunn McKinney, provided in 1967. Obituary already cited says he died within a few minutes.
101. . Letter from Mrs. Metta Dunn, Attalla, Alabama, May 26, 1914, to the Commissioner of Pensions, Washington, DC. Pension file.
102. . Lazenby, History, p. 655.