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 William Nesbit

William Nesbit

Birth
South Carolina, USA
Death 27 Jun 1863 (aged 73)
Gwinnett County, Georgia, USA
Burial Gwinnett County, Georgia, USA
Memorial ID 25330714 · View Source
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Pioneer Settler of Gwinnett County, Georgia

William Nesbit was one of the founding settlers of Gwinnett County and was instrumental in its creation in 1818. He became its first elected sheriff, holding the office of sheriff and/or deputy sheriff for a consecutive fourteen years. He also was elected to serve Gwinnett County in in the Georgia State Senate for two sessions, first in 1829 and then in 1833. His plantation of 650 acres was located near the Gwinnett/DeKalb County line on the Hightower Trail.

William Nesbit was born in South Carolina, the only child of Joseph and Sarah (Miller) Nesbit. Joseph, who who emigrated from County Down, Ireland, about the year 1770, unfortunately died shortly after William was born. His mother Sarah then married as her second husband James Carroll. After James also died, William, his mother Sarah Carroll, and her other (Carroll) children all moved to what was then Jackson County, Georgia.

On 6 November 1814, William Nesbit enlisted as a private in Capt. John Nabor's Co., 3rd South Carolina Militia, to fight against the British in the War of 1812. He was discharged in March 1815.

According to one account, William was "a man of striking appearance, full six feet high, of well-rounded proportions, evincing strength and activity, a remarkable walk indicating independence and resolution." He was a leader, a man of many accomplishments.

When William Nesbit first moved to Georgia, Jackson County was the frontier; to the west lay Indian lands. To protect the new settlements, the army officials in Fort Daniel, the earliest fort built in the region, decided in 1812 to establish a road from there to Fort Gilmer on the Chattahoochee River, about 30 miles away. They commissioned Robert Young, Isham Williams, and William Nesbit, who supervised, to construct it. Originally cut 12 feet wide, the road quickly became the most important thoroughfare in that part of the state, what is now called Peachtree Road. In subsequent years, William was commissioned to construct other roads, also bridges, in Gwinnett County.

On 12 July 1809, William Nesbit and Mary (Polly) Lawless applied for a marriage license in Jackson County, Georgia. During the next twenty-four years, the couple had twelve children: Mahaley, who married John Burns; Sarah, who married Alford Williams; Luzany, who married Hiram R. Williams; Joseph H. Nesbit, who married Mary Catherine Winn; Margaret Delaney, who married Harrison R. Brogdon; John William, who married Elizabeth Hoyle; William Ira, who remained single; Alvin Crawford, who married Rebecca J. Craig; Sylvester, who married Melissa Carolyn Lively; Parizade, who married Pinckney M. Craig; Charlton H., who also remained single; and Mary A., who married Benjamin Franklin Jones. After his wife Mary died in 1849, William Nesbit took as his second wife, Mrs. Malinda (Davis) Jack on 28 Feb 1860 in Fulton County.


Note: Information about William's parents comes from the manuscript "The Ancestry of Andrew Alexander Nesbitt," compiled by his father Clarence Ralph Nesbitt, which was written in 1937 and presented to the D.C. D. A. R. Genealogical Records Committee in 1956. Clarence Ralph Nesbitt was a grandson of John William Nesbit (1818-1892), and his manuscript contains probably some of the best early information about William Nesbit and his origins. Nesbitt's manuscript is quoted in the book Genealogy of Peiter Heyl and His Descendants 1100-1936 written in 1954 by Elizabeth Hoyle Rucker.



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  • Maintained by: Suellen
  • Originally Created by: Alton & Loudonia
  • Added: 17 Mar 2008
  • Find A Grave Memorial 25330714
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for William Nesbit (20 Sep 1789–27 Jun 1863), Find A Grave Memorial no. 25330714, citing Nesbitt Family Cemetery, Gwinnett County, Georgia, USA ; Maintained by Suellen (contributor 46975245) .