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  • ID: I00012
  • Name: General Gates MCMAHAN 1 2 2 3 4 5 6
  • Sex: M
  • Birth: 24 MAY 1869 in Barkers Creek, Jackson County, North Carolina
  • Death: 25 JAN 1940 in his home in Oviedo, Seminole County, Florida at 8:15 pm
  • Occupation: 1900 Farmer
  • Occupation: 1910 Farmer
  • Occupation: 1920 Farmer
  • Occupation: 1924 Elevator Operator at Mill's Mill, Greenville, South Carolina
  • Occupation: 1930 Farmer
  • Census: 2 SEP 1870 Webster, Savannah Township, Sub. No. 66, Jackson County, NC Federal Census; Enum. by Alfred Zachery; Page 4 (Enum. page 260)
  • Census: 4 JUN 1880 Barker's Creek, Jackson County, NC Federal Census; Enum. by L. P. Brown; Page 3?
  • Census: 1 JUN 1900 Oconaluftee (Oconee Lufty Township), Swain County, NC Federal Census; ED 109; Enum. by David M. McLaughlin; Page 1a
  • Census: 8 APR 1910 Sevier County, TN Federal Census, District 147; Page 10b
  • Census: 29 JAN 1920 Tadmore, Hall County, GA Federal Census; Page 15a
  • Census: 1930 Tift Co GA Fed Census, Chula 1st District, GM 690, ED 139-1, Roll 387, Page 147, Sheet 1A
  • Event: Medical (Facts Pg) Weakened Heart Vessels due to hyper tension
  • Event: Death Certificate 25 JAN 1940 Florida: State File No. 2425, Registrar's No. 2
  • Event: Age at Death (Facts Pg) 70 years, 8 months, 1 day
  • Event: Funeral Home Cary-Hand Funeral Home, Orlando, Orange County, FL
  • Burial: 27 JAN 1940 Slavia Cemetery, Oviedo, Seminole County, Florida
  • Immigration: 1925 Moved to Oviedo, Seminole County, Florida (per Florida death certificate)
  • Event: Note General Gates McMAHAN and Eliza Jane GREEN are my maternal great grandparents.
  • Event: Note "Barkers Creek" in Jackson County, NC is close to the Cherokee Casino in Cherokee, NC (Smoky Mountains); also close to Sylva, Jackson County, NC
  • Event: Note 1900 Age 33 years, born NC, widower, h/h, white, male; GATES G. McMAHAN
  • Event: Note 1910 Age 41 years, born NC, married twice (this one 8 yrs), h/h, white, male; GATES E. McMAHAN
  • Event: Note 1920 Age 51 years, born NC, married, h/h, white, male; GATES McMAHAN
  • Event: Note 1930 Age 67 years, born NC, married at age 22, h/h, white, male; G. G. McMAHAN
  • Event: Address (Facts Pg) JUN 1900 Oconaluftee (Oconee Lufty Township), Swain County, NC
  • Event: Address (Facts Pg) APR 1910 Sevier County, Tennessee
  • Event: Address (Facts Pg) FEB 1913 Blairsville, Union County, GA
  • Event: Address (Facts Pg) JAN 1920 Tadmore, Hall County, GA
  • Event: Address (Facts Pg) 1924 314 Tremont Avenue, Greenville, South Carolina (per U.S. City Directories, 1821-1989)
  • Event: Address (Facts Pg) 1930 Chula, Tift County, Georgia
  • Event: Address (Facts Pg) BET 1930 AND 1940 Oviedo, Seminole County, FL
  • Reference Number: IND12
  • Note:
    General Gates McMAHAN and ELIZA JANE GREEN are my maternal biological grea t-grandparents.
    ---
    GENERAL GATES McMAHAN was married before ELIZA JANE "Liza" GREEN. His fir st wife was LAURA B. McGEE b:1874 NC. GATES McMAHAN had children with h is first marriage. I was misinformed about ELIZA GREEN being married previ ously. No marriage record has been found and she used the name "Eliza Gree n" on her marriage license to General Gates McMahan.
    SOURCE: My Grandfather, George Baxter McMahan (now deceased), son of Gener al Gates McMahan & Eliza Jane Green.

    1870 Webster, Savannah Twp, Sub. No. 66, Jackson County, NC Federal Cens us -- He is listed as GENERAL GATES McMAHAN living with his mother & fath er in House #24. GATES McMAHAN (age 45, b: TN) and family living next do or at House #25. Just down the road at House # 28 is his grandfather, WILL IAM McMAHAN (age 50, b: TN) and family.

    According to his son BURGESS B. McMAHAN (b:Feb1913 d:Feb1988) Obituary, th ey were all living in Union County, Georgia by February 1913. So somewhe re between the 1910 Sevier County, TN Census and 1920 Hall County, Georg ia Census, this group was in Union County, Georgia. Perhaps he was havi ng a hard time finding proper work. All I know is these folks moved arou nd a lot! :o)

    Rec'd GENERAL GATES McMAHAN Florida Death Certificate 06 Aug 2002. His na me is spelled "Gates General McMahan" on the document.
    --------------
    7 feature records have been selected from GNIS. Feature Name St County
    Equivalent Name Type
    USGS 7.5' Map ::
    Barkers Creek NC Jackson stream 352307N 0831733W Whittier ** Close to
    place of birth & residence
    -------------

    U.S. City Directories, 1821-1989
    Name: Gates G McMahan
    Gender: Male
    Residence Year: 1924
    Street Address: 314 Tremont avenue
    Residence Place: Greenville, South Carolina
    Occupation: Elevator Operator
    Spouse: Eliza McMahan
    Publication Title: Greenville, South Carolina, City Directory, 1924

    -------------
    A Biography by William P. McMahan, Greenwood, South Carolina
    GATES McMAHAN
    Gates and Laura made their home for six years up Mingus Creek from Mi ngus's Mill near what is now known as Watson's Field in Swain County, Nor th Carolina. A small church and school were in the community. The Forest er Service still maintains a cemetery there but all of the tombstones ha ve deteriorated until no names are readable. Laura was never well after Be thel, their fourth child, was born. She developed Pneumonia and died one y ear later. Laura McGee McMahan is buried in Floyd's Cemetery near prese nt day Highway 441, not far above Mingus's Mill.
    After Laura died, Gates became restless. The loss of one's first lo ve sometimes is never overcome. The rest of his life he was a wandere r. He chased an elusive dream. Some say he searched for "The pot of go ld at the end of the rainbow."
    Gates was busy as a Loggerman (Foreman of a logging crew) so the fo ur children went to live with Aunt Ell, wife of Dillard Jones, on
    Barker's Creek in Jackson County, North Carolina.
    Two years later Gates married Eliza Jane Green, daughter of Miss Mari etta Jane Green. The children went to live with them. Eliza cooked for t he entire logging crew. As their kitchen was small she often cooked in a l arge pot in the yard.
    Once, Gates bought some Navy beans to feed them and the loggers. Eli za had never cooked Navy beans. The men sat down to eat with no beans on t he table. Gates asked Eliza about the beans. Eliza called him aside to te ll him the beans could not be eaten because they were full of worms. The k ernels had cooked out and to Eliza they looked like tiny worms.
    With the logging completed in that area, Gates wanted to raise tobacc o. They moved to Sugar Land, Tennessee. Several of their children were bo rn there. Later, they moved to Blairsville, Union County, Georgia on t op of the Blud Ridge Mountains. Frank McMahan (his son) remembered the tr ip to Blairsville in the horse drawn wagon. The children had never se en a white hog. As they passed a farm where a white hog was in the yard, o ne of the children said "Look there Papa, there is a hog that has been sca lded and scraped." In Blairsvile, Eliza's brother George Green and his wif e, Mattie, with their children came to live in the house with them. Eli za raised quite a flock of sheep here. George Baxter McMahan remembers ea ch child walking around with a lamb to play with as well as the bitter co ld weather and deep snow. Frank McMahan remembers their first cook stov e. Gates ordered it by mail. When it arrived at the train station, the ent ire family went to bring it home. Each member of the family had to carry p art of the stove, even the smallest child carried on of the 'eyes'. They w ere the first family for miles around to stop cooking on a fireplace and c ook on a store bought stove. Gates always wanted to raise cotton. The cott on farms of Hall county (Georgia) appeared to be the place to escape the h arsh winters of Blairsville. There was also schools for the children.
    George Baxter McMahan tells of the move from Blairsville to Murrayvil le, Hall County, Georgia. Burgess Ballard McMahan was born in
    Blairsville while Gates was gone to find them a house and farm (in Hall Co unty). According to George, the night Burgess was born, the cow gave bir th to twin calves and the sow gave birth to sixteen pigs. Eliza was sick a nd had no milk for the baby. Burgess was allergic to cows milk and also h ad asthma. No one believed that Eliza or the small baby could survive t he move in the covered wagon.
    A neighbor agreed to take Eliza and the baby in his buggy which was e quipped with curtains. With the help of two lanterns sat on the floor a nd the curtains, Eliza and baby Burgess was kept reasonably warm and d ry on the trip that took several days. Frank McMahan drove the covered wag on with their few possessions and the other children. The weather was co ld with a drizzling rain falling. The wagon leaked. The first night was sp ent with a black family who operated a camp for travelers. George McMah an said it was the best cooked food as he really was hungry.
    The second day the children became damp and were about to freeze to de ath. Frank gave each child a small amount of white whiskey to help keep th em warm. It was the only thing available. The children said this wou ld be hard to believe because no one can remember Frank taking a dri nk of any alcoholic beverage in his life. Late the second day, they arriv ed at a small town. No one remembers the name but Frank bought Eliza a pa ir of shoes there. It was the first time George Baxter McMahan had seen co ncrete sidewalks. He was a little leary of it. The first time he stepp ed on it, it flew up and hit him in the face. Actually, he was so drink fr om the whiskey he couldn't walk. After they became settled in Murryvill e, Gates went back to Blairsville to sell the land and livestock left behi nd.
    The next move was to the Tadmore community near Gainesville in Hall C ounty, Georgia. Here Nora Bethel McMahan met William Rastus "Bunk" Christi an who worked for the railroad that passed near their home. After their ma rriage they made their home in Dames Ferry in Monroe County, Georgia.
    World War I began. Frank Lee McMahan went into the Marine Corps and w as stationed in Salt Lake City, Utah. He returned with unbelievable tal es of water where an egg would float and a man had to exert considerable e ffort to go under. Rufus Love McMahan and Richard Reagan McMahan went in to the US Army, serving in France. Gates went to Montana where two of h is cousins lived because of the big money that could be made plowing the g reat plains. His plan was to move his family three but abandoned the ide a. At Tadmore the home burned with the boys and Gates away from home. Eli za burned her arms badly attempting to save a trunk belonging to Frank whe re his momentoes and money sent home were kept.
    Gates then moved his family to Greenville, Greenville County, South C arolina where he and several of the children worked in the Mills of that a rea. Frank and Mary Moore McMahan moved to Laurens County, South Carolin a, near Mary's people, where they lived and raised their family. Gates bec ame dissatisfied with the environment around the Greenville Textile Mil ls in which the children were growing up in. This was during the great Flo rida Land Boom.
    Like so many people, Gates was impressed with the beautiful picture p ainted by the land promoters of that day. He decided to go to Florida a nd see. All arrangements were made for him to go by the Real Estate peopl e. He boarded a boat "The Saint Cloud" at Charleston, South Carolina. Aft er going up the Saint Johns River it docked at Sanford, Florida, whe re he was met by the land salesman. He made a down payment on 20 acres th at he was lead to believe Oranges could be grown on. sixty years later, th is same scam is carried still carried out to sell Florida land. Upon retur ning to Greenville, South Carolina, Gates purchased an old laundry delive ry truck. In their truck, Gates, sons Herman, Burgess and future son-in-la w, Richard Phillips (married Gertrude McMahan) went to Florida. There th ey picked fruit to make payments on the land. Richard Phillips went ba ck to South Carolina after a short time because he became homesick (or sho uld that be 'lovesick'). All of the family later moved to Florida where th ey survived the great hurricane.
    The next move was back to Georgia, Dames Ferry in Murray County.
    During a time when workd could not be found in Florida, the family mo ved to Dames Ferry where his married daughter Bethel and husband 'Bunk' Ch ristian lived. In addition to farming, brothers Burgess Ballard McMahan a nd John Herman McMahan made charcoal that was sold in Macon, Georgia. T he black got into their skin and was almost impossible to wash off. Burge ss decided there had to be a better way to make a living after a certain e vent. One day they carred a load to Macon. Black children were near when t hey were unloading the charcoal. Speaking of Burgess one said, "Dats a bla ck man". The other retorted "I know he a white man 'cause he talk like a w hite man." After that the brothers broke up the charcoal business.
    Most of the family then moved back to Florida where they lived out th eir lives. Whether Gate's restlessnss was a search for "A city which ha th foundations, whose builder and maker is God" or material possession s, we do not know. Everyone knew him as a hard working, God fearing man, t hat loved his family. Some say he searched for "That pot of gold". His con stant moving was typical of the pioneer American Spirit. Gates always lov ed work and the mountains of western North Carolina. The summer befo re he died he was visiting his nephew Jehu Jones. With Jehu's permissio n, he raised a field of corn for no other reason than he liked to work t he earth and see things grow. On his way back to Florida he came by his s on Frank's and picked cotton for several weeks to help with the harvest. T he author met him several times but was not priviledged to know him wel l. He was a quiet man with not much to say. It is known that he died in pe ace and assurance in May 1940, and is buried near his helpmeet of many yea rs, Eliza Jane Green McMahan, in Oveido, Florida.




    Father: John MCMAHAN b: 1847 in Jones Cove, Sevier County, Tennessee
    Mother: Rutha Martha DILLARD b: 10 MAY 1842 in Haywood County, North Carolina

    Marriage 1 Laura B. MCGEE b: 2 FEB 1873 in Cataloochee, Haywood County, North Carolina
    • Married: 11 SEP 1892 in Tuckaseigee, Jackson County, North Carolina
    • Event: Married by in J. w. Bird (Byrd), Minister of Gospel
    • Event: Marriage witnesses in I. L. McGee, Sarah McGee, M. T. Stanford
    Children
    1. Has Children Frank Lee MCMAHAN , Sr. b: 17 AUG 1894 in Jackson County, North Carolina
    2. Has Children Rufus Love MCMAHAN b: 4 FEB 1896 in Cherokee County, North Carolina
    3. Has Children Richard Reagan MCMAHAN b: 17 OCT 1897 in Whittier, Swain County, North Carolina
    4. Has Children Nora Bethel MCMAHAN b: 17 MAY 1899 in Oconaluftee (Oconee Lufty Township), Swain County, North Carolina

    Marriage 2 Eliza Jane "Liza" GREEN b: 4 AUG 1879 in Oconaluftee (Oconee Lufty Township), Swain County, North Carolina
    • Married: 13 MAR 1902 in Cherokee Indian Reservation, Oconaluftee, Swain County, North Carolina
    • Event: Marriage witnesses in M. C. Floyd, J. HYDE, A. M. Chambers
    • Event: Married by in W. H. Queen, Baptist Minister
    Children
    1. Has Children Benjamin Harrison MCMAHAN , Sr. b: 3 JUL 1903 in Jackson County, North Carolina
    2. Has Children Bertha MCMAHAN b: 22 APR 1905 in Jackson County, North Carolina
    3. Has Children Gertrude G. MCMAHAN b: 29 SEP 1906 in Gainesville, Hall County, Georgia
    4. Has Children George Baxter MCMAHAN , Sr. b: 18 MAR 1909 in Sugarland, Sevier County, Tennessee
    5. Has No Children John Herman MCMAHAN b: 7 JAN 1911 in Blairsville, Union County, Georgia
    6. Has Children Burgess Ballard MCMAHAN b: 3 FEB 1913 in Blairsville, Union County, Georgia
    7. Has No Children Cora Florine MCMAHAN b: 25 MAR 1914 in Murrayville, Hall County, Georgia
    8. Has No Children Andrew Dillard MCMAHAN b: 28 SEP 1916 in Blairsville, Union County, Georgia
    9. Has Children Cora Lee MCMAHAN b: 20 OCT 1918 in Tadmore, Hall County, Georgia
    10. Has Children Ruby Mae MCMAHAN b: 25 APR 1920 in Macon, Bibb County, Georgia

    Sources:
    1. Florida Death Certificate
    2. Jackson Co NC Federal Census
    3. Swain Co NC Federal Census
    4. Sevier Co TN Federal Census
    5. Hall Co GA Federal Census
    6. Tift Co GA Federal Census
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