The  Willie  P. Cherry  Family 

Willie P. Cherry was born on Saturday, February 7, 1818, in North Carolina, the son of Darling and Elizabeth Wynns Cherry of the Wild Cat Hill Plantation in Martin County, North Carolina.

Willie had five brothers and sisters: Adeline A., Mary Ann, Romulus S., Nancy Elizabeth and Rufus.
Circa 1835, Willie married Julia Etta Wheatley (or Whitley), born Thursday, July 13, 1815, the daughter of Jesse and Elizabeth Wheatley of Martin County, North Carolina.

About 1835, Willie's sister, Mary Ann, eloped with Henry G. Winburn and they began a journey west to Tennessee. Mary Ann never reached Tennessee, she died giving birth to their only child , Hardy, on January 20, 1836. Henry Winburn returned to the Cherry home in North Carolina, with his young son, and left him in the care of the Cherry Family until he became 18 years of age.

About 1837, Henry Winburn again started for Tennessee, and it may be, since Willie and Julia traveled there at about the same time, they probably traveled together. Willie and Julia would have taken with them their first child, Anne Elizabeth, born in 1836. Legend says that when the Cherrys came from North Carolina, they could see, in the distance, the Blue Ridge Mountains, days and days before ever getting close enough to cross them. They also carried with them a large wooden box that contained all their cooking utensils.

Both families, the Cherries and the Winburns, settled in Haywood County. Henry Winburn settled to the north and remarried a Wood girl, in 1839, and the Cherrys settled to the south near the little town of Dancyville. They were apparently members of the Dancyville Methodist Church.

In 1839 Willie P. and Julia's first Tennessee born child was named Andrew D. In 1841, James Knox Polk Cherry was born, followed by Sarah Amanda in 1842 and George Dallas in 1844. The last two boy's names gives an indication of the Cherry's political views. In 1844, running on the Democrat ticket, James Knox Polk was elected president and George Dallas was his vice president. Polk had been a Governor of  Tennessee.

In 1846 twin girls were born to the Cherrys; Aurora and Augusta. In 1848, Lewis Cass was running for president on the Democrat ticket. Willie P. and Julia named their son, born that year, Lewis Cass Cherry. Lewis Cass Cherry was my great-great-grandfather.

Julia Cherry's brother, Jesse Wheatly, Jr., fought in the Mexican War (1847-1848). He was discharged in Texas at the wars end.

Willie's brother, Romulus, died in North Carolina in 1847. During the 1850's, two sisters, Nancy and Adeline moved, with their families, to North Mississippi, settling in Marshall County.

In 1850, Willie and Julia Cherry were listed on the Haywood County Census, living in District #2. His real Estate was valued at $1300 and he owned three slaves. He was a farmer and all of his children, of school age, attended. The youngest daughter, Mary Eliza Cherry was born in 1850.

Possibly while the new Dancyville Methodist Church was being constructed, a Cherry funeral was being conducted in the adjoining cemetery. Young Aurora, one of Willie P. and Julia's twins died on Thursday, January 30, 1851 and was buried in the Methodist Cemetery. Not long after, Willie P. Cherry died on Wednesday, November 24, 1852. He was only 34 years old and was also buried in the Methodist Cemetery. On a sadder note, he would never get to see his son, Willie P.T. Cherry, who was born 12 days after Willie died.

Julia Cherry assumed her position as head of household and on the 1854 tax roll of Haywood County, the family still lived in District #2, and were listed as "heirs of Willie Cherry". The "heirs" owned 200 acres of  land valued at $1400 and one slave valued at $900. In 1856 Julia's name was listed on the tax rolls as owning 169 acres of land valued at $1008.

During the Civil War years, one of Willie Cherry's first cousins lived in Savannah, Tennessee, at the Cherry Mansion, and was a loyal Unionist. The Julia Cherry family took up arms with the Confederacy. Three of the Cherry brothers; Andrew, James and George all enlisted in the Infantry and Calvary Regiments. Two would never return.
Andrew was killed at the battle of Shiloh, April 1862. James after being wounded at the battle of Perryville (KY.), on October 8, 1862, was captured and taken to an Illinois prison, where he died from his wounds in 1863. George rode with General Nathan Forrest's Calvary until the end of the war.

In 1872, Julia's son George, gave a verbal will to witnesses asking all his land and estate be sold and the money given to his mother, Julia Cherry. Julia Cherry did not live much past the giving of the verbal will. She died in 1873 and was buried beside Willie P. in the Dancyville Methodist Cemetery.

The Cherry Family Profile is by Matthew Lundy, ggg-grandson of Willie P. and Julia Etta Wheatley Cherry
We greatly appreciate Mr. Lundy sharing the profile for this site. jd


(Note: numerals in front of names indicates generation,  with Willie P. being 1st)

The 10 Children of 1 Willie P. and Julia Cherry (and their descendants):

2 Anne Elizabeth Cherry
      born: Sep 30, 1836, in North Carolina
      died: 1922 in Haywood County
      married: (c 1854 TN.) William Henry Ford
                                              born: 1831 in Madison County, Virginia
                                              died: 1918 in Dancyville Tennessee      
          their children:
                3 Laura A. Ford
                      born: 1853 in Tennessee
                      died:  1896 in Tennessee buried in Dancyville Methodist Cemetery
                3 George R. Ford
                      born: 1856 in Tennessee
                      married Mary Williams (Willie) Jones (1863-1935)
                      their children:
                           4 Archer T. Ford (1885-1955)
                3 Nancy Adeline Ford
                      born: 1857 in Tennessee
                      died: 1917
                      married William Nathan Kilby (1851-1915)
                      their children:
                           4 William Farris
                           4 James Rawlings
                           4 Frank Clifford
                           4 Mary Elizabeth
                           4 Laura Ford
                 3 Julia M. Ford
                      born: 1860 in Tennessee
                      died: 1939
                      married (unkn.) Taylor
                      their children:
                           4 Ethel
                           4 Lulu
                           4 Maude
                           4 Ruby
                           4 Annie Mabel
                           4 Walter
                           4 Henry Ford
                  3 James A. Ford  born: 1864 in Tennessee
                  3 Robert Walker Ford
                       born: 1867 in Tennessee
                       died:  1946 - buried in Dancyville Methodist Cemetery
                       married Dora Emma Walden (1869-1936)
                       their children:
                            4 Emma D.
                            4 Mary Lenna
                            4 Janie F.
                            4 Robert
                            4 Annie R. Ford
           Note: On the 1850 Census, William Ford was an apprentice to a wheel wright.
Civil War Service of William Henry Ford: Company A, 9th Tennessee Infantry. He was temporarily blinded at the Battle of Shiloh by dust from a cannon ball. He could not open his eyes and was returned to camp.   William and his brothers left the army at the end of their enlistment's, not being aware the Confederacy had extended all enlistment's to "end of war." William was later denied his pension for leaving early.

GO HERE - for Continuation of  Willie P. Cherry Descendants