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 Isom Gwin

Isom Gwin

Shelby County, Alabama, USA
Death 17 Dec 1853 (aged 36)
Martin, Dallas County, Alabama, USA
Burial Martin, Dallas County, Alabama, USA
Plot 20 feet from road on right side of cemetery
Memorial ID 49577345 · View Source
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Isom Gwin (see footnote A below), Justice of the Peace of Dallas County, Alabama, lived in the Dallas Co. towns of Cahawba and Athens (yes, there were two towns called Athens in Alabama, the first one in Limestone County, which is still there, and the second in Dallas County, once located 1.5 miles due north of present-day Safford; its post office was called Liberty Hill to avoid confusion with the other Athens--see footnote B below). He was born in Shelby County (in or near what is now Wilsonville) and grew up in the then-capital city of Cahawba. His father, John Gwin, owned and operated a wheelwright shop located a couple of blocks from the Alabama state capitol building.

Isom was named for his grandfather, Isom/Isham Gwin, a native Virginian and adopted Indianan who raised his family for nearly 30 years in Sevier County, TN. While there, Grandpa Isham became a Christian and eventually a pastor. He preached on the evils of slavery while he himself still held slaves.

Finally Isham was convicted of his sin by the Holy Spirit; he released all his slaves and moved with most of his family and many friends to Orange Co., Indiana, before 1820, where he helped found and became the first pastor of the Providence Baptist Church (see footnote F below) still located between the county seats of English and Paoli in southern Orange County. Isom the grandfather died in Dec 1830; his yet-to-be-discovered gravesite is probably located in Orange Co., IN, but possibly in adjacent Washington Co. to the east.

Meanwhile in Dallas Co., AL. in 1837 Grandson Isom was married to Mary Burdine Wilson, also of Cahawba. They had two daughters, Mary Jane (who married William J. Smith) and Martha RoseAnn (who m1. Madison Holley and m2. Bryant Brown Lester). Isom's name can be found on many Dallas Co. marriage licenses he issued during his tenure as JP. Sadly, it can also be seen on his last will and testament, where he left to his wife and daughters several slaves he held (see footnote A below).

He owned several--perhaps many--pieces of real estate in and around the young and ill-fated town of Athens (again, see footnote B below). Today's County Road 109 was then called the Cahawba-to-Lexington Road. The intersection of what was then Athens' Main Street and that C-L Road was located fifty yards south of the junction of four sections of land: sections 33 and 34, T16, R7, and sections 3 and 4, T15, R7 (1.5 miles due north of Safford, Dallas Co., AL).

Isom died at the young age of 36 and is buried some four miles east and a mile north of that Athens location in the cemetery across the road (Alabama Highway 21) from the present-day Azion Baptist Church at Martin Station (see footnote D below).

His widow later was married for several years to Rev. John Steadman, pastor of the Protestant Methodist church where she and Isom had attended and where his funeral may even have been preached by Rev. Steadman. Mary B. (Wilson) Gwin Steadman lived with her younger brother and helped care for their father, Col. Nathaniel Burdine Wilson, until the latter died in Dallas Co. ca. 1875. She then moved to Perry Co., AL, where she died and is buried (see footnote E below).

FOOTNOTES--see also:







Family Members



Sacred to the memory of ISOM GWIN, born March 17th 1817, and died December 17th 1853, in hopes of a glorious immortality. The deceased was a native of this state and was raised from an infant in this county. In 1837 he married Miss Mary B. Wilson; he became religious in 1840, and united with the Protestant Methodist Church of which he lived a member till his death. In his death his bereaved wife mourns the death of a kind and affectionate husband, his two children the loss of a tender and loving father, his parents a dutiful and beloved son, his brothers and sisters a loving and beloved brother.
Blessed are the dead that die in the Lord: Rev.

Gravesite Details Only the stub of the gravestone remains in place. Unknown vandals probably broke the stone off in earlier years. Guessing that was probably the case, I located the stone using a metal probe and dug it up, leaving it on the grave above ground.




  • Created by: John Gwin
  • Added: 12 Mar 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 49577345
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Isom Gwin (17 Mar 1817–17 Dec 1853), Find A Grave Memorial no. 49577345, citing Azion Baptist Church Cemetery, Martin, Dallas County, Alabama, USA ; Maintained by John Gwin (contributor 46606577) .