“I had a native ambition to rise from obscurity and make myself useful in the world, to shine and be distinguished.” So said the Hon. Neil S. Brown, one of the 259 prominent 19th-century Tennesseans profiled in this extraordinary book. It is this kind of unique first-hand biographical information that makes Sketches of Prominent Tennesseans unequaled in the canon of Tennessee genealogical literature. Not only did compiler William S. Speer have the unparalleled opportunity to interview a number of the featured Tennesseans himself, he also was able to garner–and include in this book–thousands and thousands of names of their family members, friends, and colleagues.
The biographical sketches include numerous details about the lives of the subjects and their families. In addition, the compiler offers insight into the personal, professional, and sometimes even physical characteristics that made each of these men a success.
Surnames featured include Anderson, Arrington, Atkins, Atlee, Baptist, Barrett, Bartlett, Bate, Baxter, Bearden, Bibb, Black, Blankenship, Boynton, Bradford, Briggs, Brockway, Brown, Buchanan, Buist, Burney, Burns, Burrus, Butler, Callender, Campbell, Chester, Childress, Clapp, Clift, Coldwell, Cole, Conner, Cooper, Cowan, Craft, Cullom, Dake, Dashiell, Deaderick, DeWitt, Dibrell, Dickens, Dodd, East, Elder, Elliott, Erskine, Estes, Evans, Eve, Ewing, Fain, Fentress, Ferriss, Fleming, Folsom, Foote, Foster, Frayser, Freeman, Frierson, Frizzell, Fulkerson, Gantt, Gaines, Gallaway, Gardenhire, Gaut, Gibson, Glass, Godwin, Golliday, Goodbar, Grant, Graves, Green, Greer, Hadden, Hall, Haller, Harding, Hardwick, Harrell, Harris, Harrison, Haynes, eiskell, Henderson, Henning, Hill, Holman, Holmes, Houk, House, Howell, Hughes, Humes Ingersoll, Jackson, Jones, Jordan, Keating, Kennedy, Key, Killebrew, King, Kyle, Larkin, Latta, Lea, Ledgerwood, Lidsley, Lipscomb, Livingston, Looney, Long, McAdoo, McBride, McConnell, McDowell, McFarland, McFerrin, McGuire, McMurray, McNeal, McTyeire, McWhirter, Maddin, Marchbanks, Marks, Martin, Mathes, Maruy, Meek, Menees, Mitchell, Morgan, Moore, Mumford, Muse, Neal, Neely, Neilson, Nelson, Netherland, Nichol, Nichols, Nicholson, Overton, Paine, Palmer, Patterson, Pettibone, Phillips, Pitman, Plunket, Porter, Quarles, Rambaut, Randolph, Reid, Richardson, Roberts, Robison, Rodgers, Rose, Safford, Sanford, Saunders, Scobey, Sears, Senter, Shearer, Sheppard, Shields, Simonton, Smith, Smitheal, Smithson, Staley, Stark, Stephens, Stewart, Stockell, Stokes, Tarver, Taylor, Temple, Thompson, Thomas, Thornburgh, Thornton, Thurman, Tinnon, Trewhitt, Trousdale, Turley, Turney, Ussery, Vance, Van Deman, Van Dyke, Vertrees, Wade, Ward, Warder, Watson, White, Shitthorne, Wilder, Williamson, Wilson, Wood, Woods, Wright, and Young.