Where was Middleton? Map 1 Map 2 Map 3
Middleton, Mississippi is listed as having an elevation
feet, and being located in Montgomery County (present day site).
However, when Middleton was first incorporated, it was located in Carroll
County, until the allocation of part of Carroll
County to form Montgomery County in the early 1870s. The current location is listed as Bailey
Lake, according to the U.S. Geological Service.
Middleton was located at 33
degrees 29 minutes and 10
seconds North, and 089
degrees, 45 minutes,
and 03 seconds West. Winona is listed at 33
degrees 29 minutes and 10
seconds North and 089
degrees 44 minutes and 59
History of Middleton, Carroll County. By Mrs. O. K. Gee, Sr., Carrollton, MS.
Printing Company, Winona, Miss. June 1, 1961.
the Department of Archives and History, Jackson, MS. Call No. 976.263 C23ha.
Note: I can take NO credit
whatsoever for the information contained herein. This work was compiled by the diligent
efforts of Mrs. O.K. Gee, Sr., of Carrollton, MS, in 1961, which was the year of
Winona’s Centennial, and I have presented it here as a verbatim copy of the
actual document. I have made no
attempt to correct any spelling, dates, punctuation, pagination (such as
incomplete sentences or paragraph construction), or source materials. Several words of mention, however: (1) The Middleton Cemetery
has now been restored by the hard work of the Winona Lions Club and (2) although this document
alludes to the fact that Middleton was ALWAYS named or known as Middleton, it
was, in fact, officially established as IRWIN, MS in 1837. The link to Irwin can be found at the
bottom of this page, and the information in the Irwin link is a copy of the
Official Laws of the State of Mississippi, as contained in the Mississippi
Supreme Court Law Library in Jackson, MS.
The only plausible explanation is that, despite its incorporation as
Irwin in 1837, the town had been
unofficially known as Middleton for many years prior to that date. Nine months after the incorporation of the
town as Irwin, the name was changed officially to Middleton.]
HISTORY OF MIDDLETON, CARROLL
“In writing this history, the writer
shall attempt to define and portray the settlement, development and removal
of a small town or village that existed long ago in Carroll County, Mississippi.
This village was situated on a small
plateau eight miles east of Carrollton and two miles west of Winona and was known for its
beauty, cultural and educational advantages as Middleton, or the Athens of Mississippi.
About the year 1790 one Irelton
C. DeVane came to this plateau and built a small
log store for a trading post with the Indians and occasional travelers. Then Western Mississippi in 1800 was a virgin territory
full of wild game such as bear, deer, Fowls of many kind, wild pigeons by the
thousand, too there were packs of wolves, wild cats, panthers and foxes.
Valuable forests stood every where of
oak, gum, poplar, pine, walnut, chestnut, hickory, dogwood, and holly. The land was fresh and new.
In 1818 when Mississippi was admitted as a State
to the Union, white settlers came to this section seeking new homes. Middleton was not in existence at this
One of the early settlers was William
Pace who came from Kentucky prospecting in 1820. He liked the country and returned to Kentucky, married and in company
with others returned. Mt. Pace and his bride shared the
same horse returning to their new home in Mississippi.
Mr. Pace had built what was known as a
block house of logs. The lower portion
was a room twelve feet square, had a large stone chimney, no doors or
windows; above this room was another, the same size with a door and small
windows on all four sides to look out.
This door was the only one to the block house and was entered by a
rope ladder made of twisted vines.
After entering the ladder was pulled up into the room and the door
securely bolted. The lower room was
accessible through a trap door and rough wooden steps leading down. After entering the trap door was
fastened. Every precaution was taken
against wild animals. The Indians were
peace loving and liked the settlers.
In this room all domestic work and cooking was
done. The cooking utensils used on the
large open fire place were of iron.
Pots on winging cranes, pulled over the fire cooked stewed meats of
many kinds. The cranes were made of
iron and fastened to the sides of the chimney on hinges. Forty-two inch long handled skillets with
lids stood on four inch legs were used for baking breads and honey
cakes. Lids on pots and skillets were
removed with a long poker that had a hook on the end. Large shovels and tongs kept the log fire
in place. All cooking utensils were of
iron, they were heavy and cumbersome to say nothing of flat iron that weighed
eighteen to twenty pounds.
A few years later Mr. William Pace
bought Dr. Allen Gary’s house and part of the household furniture. Some of this house is still in the
possession of the Pace family. This
house stood directly in front of the block house. Mr. Pace was fond of his new home, and it was here Mr. Charles Pace was born. He said he supposed he was the only man in Carroll County who was born and lived
all of his life in a house that was in a town, two counties and is now in the
country. He and the house were written
up in Believe It or Not in the Commercial Appeal.
Dr. Gary built another home on the
outskirts of Middleton which was very beautiful and spacious.
In 1830 Dancing Rabbit Creek
Treaty was signed, and this opened the floodgates for new settlers. Many fine people came seeking new homes
from Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Kentucky, and Tennessee. The settlement grew and soon a village was
established which had its beginning at the Little Log Store on the road that
led from this section to Greensboro, the county seat of Choctaw County, and
connecting with the Natchez Trace to Natchez.
Carroll County was established on December 23, 1833 from a portion of the
territory acquired from the Choctaw Indians by the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit
Creek. The State legislature passed an
act which authorized Edmond G. Whitehead, James
Collins, Titus Howard, Absalom Herring and William Collins to organize the
county. The county was named for
Charles Carroll of Carrollton, Maryland, one of the signers of
the Declaration of Independence.
23, 1833 the Board of Police was
granted by the charter permission to organize and form Carroll County. This Board consisted of Edmond G. Whitehead, President
of the Board, Dan McEachern, John Rogers, Thomas
Mathis, and Woody Appleton. They at
once laid out and built many roads, two of which
crossed at the Little Log Store as trading post. Occupying a favorable position this store
attracted many new comers, as it was the junction of Carrollton and Shongalo roads and was called Oxford, then later Bowling
Green, because the young men bowled on the Green, but finally the name of
Middleton was acquired and from here on grew into a town of 2900 and was incorporated in 1840.
Letters were sent as early as 1824 by stage coach mail for
twenty-five cents. The envelope was
made by folding a square of note paper, sealed with a sealing wax and stamped
by the sender with his or her signet ring or crest ring. One letter of this 1827 type is owned by Mrs. Sam
Young of Winona.
Early in 1830 Ephriam
Walls was granted a license to keep a tavern and to sell wines and spirituous
liquors at Middleton. His successors
were Mr. Newton and later Mrs. Bridges.
It is interesting to note that in 1836 the Board of Police regulated the price at inns
to be charged as follows: 25¢ for breakfast, 25¢ for dinner, 25¢ for supper, and 25¢ for a nights
lodging. There are records of licenses
granted in 1836 to retail liquor at the
inns and taverns at Middleton, as there were some there at a very early date.
The business part of the town was built
around a square which measured 250 feet on all sides. On the south of the square were located two
doctors offices, cabinet shop where furniture was made, and a shoe factory
where shoes were made to order by measurement. Two general merchandise stores were on the
west and two on the north side. The
second largest store built at Middleton was called the Big Store. A taylor shop where mens suits were made and tailored to order. Another large merchandise store, a clock
shop was opened in 1836 where clocks were
repaired for the newly arrived settlers who needed their time pieces regulated after a long and
In 1839 Col. O. J. Moore and
Peter Gee arrived from Virginia and established the Big
Store. It is known that Middleton had
a newspaper called The Family Organ published there in 1843. How long it was published is not known, as
no copy can be found. A hotel was on
the east side called Middleton Hotel, also a large two-story building. This building was one of the town’s
attractions; the upper floor was used as a photographers
shop where daguerreotype pictures were made on tin and placed in small frames
with a hinged front. The cases looked
like small leather covered locks.
These pictures were made on tin or silver coated metal. Also there were cabinet sized photographers
made and tintype photographs of various sized. The lower floor was used as a town hall for
entertainments and occasionally travelling shows.
Near the east end of the square was a
blacksmith shop and carriage factory where closed carriages called barouches,
coaches small and large, carriages and wagons were made to order. The coaches were closed with seats facing
each other, small windows with panes of glass. The doors had panes of glass with wide
fringed curtains. The doors were
hinged on with strong iron hinges, door knobs were often of silver, and side
lamps trimmed in silver. The coaches
were quite handsome upholstered in silk brocade or velvet in colors to suit
the taste of the owners, were drawn by one or two horses, all depended on the
size of the coach.
A row of law offices were east of the
blacksmith shop and carriage factory.
Business enterprises were run by Alfred
Drake and Mike Hill, others by Baker, Townsend, James Bryant, Hemmingway,
Col. O. J. Moore, Peter Gee, Alexander Ray, Small and Davidson and many other
About three miles west of Middleton was
located a mill which made wool into rolls of batting ready to be spun into
yarn by the spinning wheel, then put in the loom and woven into cloth by the
yard. The yarn was dyed in colors of
red, blue, brown and grey. Coverlets
were woven this way also and were quite beautiful in design and color. This wool mill was run by horse power. Two horses were hitched to an immovable
beam and made to walk on a movable round platform which revolved, supplying
power for the mill. A cotton gin was
operated in the same way. Other mills
were run by water power.
Most of the spinning and weaving were
done by slaves who came from the Carolinas with their owners who
brought with them spinning wheels and looms.
The settlers traveled the usual mode by covered wagons and ox carts
drawn by oxen. Household furniture was
stored in the covered wagons, four post beds were
strapped to the sides of the carts with thongs of leather made from raw
hides. Clocks and other valuable
possessions were carefully packed and stored in clothes chests. The journey was slow and tedious and often
dangerous. Settlers came in small
groups or caravans, often stopping to make a log shelter, raise a corn crop
and vegetable garden.
Northwest of Middleton were several
large strong flowing springs. One
still exists today.
It was here a company built a
three-story flour mill, a cotton mill, and a large cotton factory prior to
the Civil War, the outbreak of which prevented the cotton factory from
operating as they could not get all the necessary machinery to run it. The flour mill was also confiscated by the
Confederate Army and operated to feed their soldiers.
North of Middleton down the hill on a
branch was built a tanyard. Leather was tanned here by being put
through a lime solution, then soaked in a vat filled
with water and bark taken from the Red Oak tree. It was then taken out, stretched, dried,
and made into shoes. Some were
retailed to the public.
Three brothers by the name of Young
owned and ran the shoe factory. All
three factories were confiscated by the Confederate Army and used or operated
for the use of the Army. Those taken
were the carriage factory, flour mill and shoe factory. They were never operated thereafter at
Middleton but were moved elsewhere.
A large stage coach line ran from Holly Springs by way of Middleton to
Durant over which passengers and mail were carried daily. Four horses were changed about every twenty
miles, as they were urged to travel at a high rate of speed while drawing the
At the outbreak of the Civil War twenty
of the fine coaches and much harness were stored in the big coach barn at
Middleton. During the Civil War the
barn was broken into by the farmers of the surrounding country who took most
of the harness and used it. They also
disassembled many of the coaches and used the parts to repair their wagons
for farming use.
Middleton was always a
religious center, having from its very beginning a Baptist, Methodist,
Presbyterian and Christian Church.
The Episcopalians did not have a building so worshiped in one owned by
the Presbyterians. Later the
Episcopalians built a small church. It
is on Highway 82 going into Winona, but it is now used as a
Dwelling. It too was in Middleton but
is now in the country.
An interesting thing about these early
churches was a place in the back paneled off or a gallery running the whole back
length of the church, high up, with steps or stairs entered from the
outside. The places were set aside for
the slaves to worship with their masters.
At this time the Negroes had no separate churches of their own.
From the Methodist records we find a few
of the ministers who served Middleton.
In 1836 N. C. Pain was a Circuit
Rider who served many other places. In
1836 Rev. James Applewhite and Rev. Jessie Morris were evangelist
missionaries, Thomas Davidson and J. I. E. Byrd in 1837. These are very early Methodist Ministers.
From the Methodist Records we also have
M. E. Church, December 15, 1849, Rev. H. Williamson was
from the Yazoo District which was founded in 1849. Rev. David Dilbehay
pastor November 26, 1856 and 1857. Rev. James D. Carlisle November 16, 1859. Rev. James Weldon and Rev. William Wardsworth were presiding elders at Middleton November 24, 1860.
The early Presbyterian ministers of Middleton were Rev. A. Newton in 1836 and was followed by Rev. W. E.
Holly in 1837. Then came others,
Atkinson, Hart, Harrison and Morrison.
The Baptists in 1836 were served by the
following ministers: Rev. S. L. Lattimer, Lowery, Schols, Pitman and Morris.
The Rev. S. L. Lattimer,
the Baptist minister, had a bitter debate upon points of differences between
the Presbyterian and Baptist belief.
The argument was so bitter and furious it took many years for the
results of this bitter debate to quiet down.
The Christian Church was served by a Rev.
Brown who ably conducted services for his members at Middleton. They did not have a church of their own so
rented a building.
The cemetery which belonged to Middleton
is the most historical and perhaps one of the oldest in this section of the country. Instead of having a fence (built around the
cemetery) a deep ditch like the moats of old was dug all around it. Some people say to prevent cattle from
grazing on the graves. Others say this
moat was dug during the Civil War to keep the Yankees from stabling their
horses and camping there.
Today you can see traces of this deep
moat under the brush and brier bushes.
The tombstones and monuments are in bad condition. Some are down, and many others are broken
and covered with vines and weeds. In
places the trees have pushed the headstones aside.
Middleton, having many stores and other
established businesses, all merchandise was hauled from Greenwood by wagon train.
Cotton was hauled by Middleton as far
away as Choctaw and Chickasaw Counties to Greenwood by wagon trains of
fifteen and twenty-five teams, with four to six and sometimes eight mules to
a wagon and often a lead mule. The
mule teams had bells on their harness that made much noise if not a pleasing
tinkling sound. The bells were used to
let people know the teams were coming and to avoid the causeway roads and
covered bridges both of which were narrow.
At night the slave drivers took turn about, singing and popping their
long whips to scare the howling wolves and screaming panthers away. They were not very pleasant to hear in the
wee dark hours of a cold night, as the slaves stood guard by the huge camp
fires over their teams.
On the return trip they would bring back
greatly needed merchandise for Middleton and other near by towns. Usually among the merchandise would be
found a five gallon keg of whiskey with which the drivers would make the long
nights spent in camp more enjoyable.
This whiskey cost 25¢ a gallon. The wagon driver would thrill the young
people along the road by doing the double pop with their long whips which
sounded like pistol shots.
Middleton, the Athens
of Mississippi boasted of two famous schools, “Judson Institute” and “Peoples Academy”. Judson Institute became “Middleton Female
Institute”. “The Peoples Academy” became “Middleton Male Academy”. Judson Institute was the outgrowth of a
movement by the Baptist of Hinds County to locate Judson Institute there, but
financial trouble arose, so the school was established at Middleton and finally
became non denominational.
In 1842 Mr. Benjamin Holt of Aberdeen became the president of Middleton Female Academy.
The schools were of the boarding type
and drew students from all sections of the state.
The Female Institute had an enrollment
of 100 to 150 students. The curriculum of the two schools was
splendid, including the classical language, English composition, chemistry,
mathematics, Astronomy, history, philosophy, and physical education. Each school had an excellent music department
of voice, piano and harp as well as other instruments, violin and flute. A very fine dancing school was conducted by
a dancing master by the name of Strickland and others who came before
Strickland. The dancing master used
the violin and flute for the music in teaching the dance steps.
The first professor who served Middleton
Female Institute was Dr. White, then Professor Finney.
The boy’s school, “The Peoples Academy” was taught by Professor
A. S. Baily.
Dr. Harper Howell Hudgins, taught a private school on their plantation
known as the Hudgens Place, owned now by Mrs. O. K.
Gee. The Peoples Academy was taught for a long
time by W. H. Williams and S. S. Brown who most ably and successfully
instructed the boys. When they
finished under S. S. Brown they were accepted for entrance in the University of Mississippi and other colleges.
Miss Murtha was the first lady to
conduct school at Middleton. This
school later became the Female College.
In 1841 Middleton was one of the
seven candidates for the location of the State of Mississippi University. This movement was bitterly opposed by the
two colleges, so the movement was defeated by two votes. The University was located at Oxford. Middleton did not want the third college, said it would ruin their two colleges.
At one time Middleton was even
considered a suitable location for the capitol of Mississippi, but this was voted down
by a losing vote of three.
The Rev. Mr. Robert Porterfield and S.S.
Brown were sent as missionary ministers from the Alleghaney College in Pennsylvania where they both had
graduated. They served Middleton as
ministers and educators for years most efficiently.
The popular mode of fun participated in
by the inhabitants at that time was rather unusual, such as street fights,
horse swap, gander pulling, horse racing and foot racing and jumping
The shooting match was a much enjoyed
sport. The guns were usually named
such as Long Tom,Fast
John, Pretty Susan, Faithful Betty.
Log rolling, house raising and building of log houses, corn husking,
quilting bees, dancing and singing contests.
Often in town there were parties where the young people enjoyed parlor
games, music, singing and dancing.
At the inns, taverns and hotels many
jokes, tricks and pranks were gotten off among the men.
Alexander K. McClung, and famous duelist
and one time United States Marshall for Northern Mississippi, visited
Middleton frequently. He is said to
have been sharing a room in the hotel with a fellow by the name of Nelson,
and in the night a big commotion aroused.
McClung who thought Nelson was trying to play a trick on him drew his
pistol, had him down on his knees begging for his life when the hotel manager
rushes in to explain the noise was caused by an old Drake that slept on top
of the dirt chimney and often lost his balance while asleep and fell down the
One in listening to tales told by the
fireside will hear of a duel fought in Middleton by two men stripped to their
waists who were given butcher knives and locked up
in a dark room during the night to fight the duel. The next morning each was found crouched in
a corner without either having a scratch.
During the later days of Middleton a daughter
of a very wealthy merchant married. In
celebrating the wedding her father gave her a dinner and invited the
public. So many people came it became
necessary to shoot fireworks at a distance to disperse part of the crowd.
When captain Roy married Miss Barry so
many people attended the wedding it was decided by her people to have the
ceremony on te front steps to the house as the
front porch and steps were large and spacious. The guests assembled in the yard where all
could witness the ceremony.
Another wedding that took place in
Middleton long ago was an all white affair, very beautiful and
spectacular. The whole wedding party
wore white and approaching the church marched through an avenue of pine
torches held high by young men dressed also in white. This wedding took place in one of the many
churches at Middleton.
May cultured, wealthy and educated
people had settled at Middleton. They
came from Virginia, North and South Carolina and Georgia, also from Kentucky and Tennessee. Some came very early as has been previously
mentioned. They settled in Middleton
thinking their new home would be peaceful and profitable. All had slaves and valuable holdings.
In 1834 the William Barrow family
came with his father-in-law, Warner Waddlington of Madison County. They were educated cultured people of
wealth and owned slaves and land. The
Civil War caused William Barrow heavy losses as well as money lost in Georgia on a large note to a
friend. He worried so much he lost his
health and died at a cousin’s home near Middleton.
During the 1849 Gold Rush two of his
children, William and Mrs. Baily went to California.
and his son, William K. made their home west of Middleton and were quite active in the development of Carroll County. Warren’s daughter married Smith
McMillan. After his death during the
Civil War she accidentally shot herself, leaving three children and a
stepson, Lee McMillan. They owned land
on Pelucia Creek.
The people of Middleton were not slow in
fighting for their rights, and on November
30, 1861 Middleton Rebels (3rd Regiment) Alcorne Brigade of Carroll County was organized. Captain Hulett P. Atkins; Lieutenants John L. Lawrence; Isaac C.
Sullivan; Milton C. M. Carroll.
(From Fighting Units Civil War Page 122 History of Carroll County Court House)
Carroll Rebels was organized Company H.
Fourth Mississippi regiment was mustered into
State Service at Carrollton Augut 24, 1861. J. J. Gee was elected First Lieutenant;
Joseph Drake as Captain. (Page 127, Volume 8 Part I)
The above companies took many of the
young men from Middleton and surrounding community.
In the very early settlement of
Middleton Alexander McC. Townsend and Christian
Herring Townsend came to Carroll County from Robeson County, North Carolina. Both of these names are in Lunebert County, Virginia, so these must be
definite kinship. Simeon Stovall came
in 1828 with wife Lucy (Louisiana) Jenkins Stovall. Her inscription is on tombstone at
Allen Jenkins came about 1830-40, and Mrs. Alexander McC. Townsend’s two brothers by the name of Absolom and William C. Herring helped to establish Carroll County.
The above data was sent by Mrs. John
Valentine, 58 West Lafayette Circle, Memphis, Tennessee. She was Virginia Townsend.
The W. Y. Collins came from Madison County. They were refined educated, wealthy
people. His oldest daughter, Miss
Sallie Collins, married Dr. William Dabney, who
came from middle Tennessee. The oldest Collins son married a daughter
Gary. Betty Collins married Reuben
Baskin. Mollie, the youngest daughter,
married Dr. Washington Stovall, a dentist. Thomas H. Collins, a son, was a lieutenant in Company “B” 15th Mississippi Regiment. He married Miss Kate Wesley and moved to Tennessee.
In 1838 Col. O. J. Moore in
company with his brother-in-law, Peter Gee and kinsmen, Thomas Gee, William
Gee and Mr. Nolly, came from Virginia (via
Summerville, Tennessee) and settled east of Middleton, owned and operated a
large mercantile store at Middleton called the “Big Store”. This partnership ended at the outbreak of
the Civil War. In Virginia prior to
coming to Mississippi Col. O. J. Moore married Rebecca Gee and Peter Gee
married Mary Ann Moore owned a plantation near Middleton. They had three sons, married Mr. J. T. Lay,
a business man from Grenada. They had one son who died in his
youth. His mother died soon after of a
broken heart, Mr. Lay having died also about this time. Laura, the second daughter, married Dr.
David E. Turner, who came from Alabama in 1860. They had several children who grew to
womanhood and manhood, married and moved away.
In 1850 there was talk of a
railroad coming through Middleton. The
people said if it came through there the town would be ruined. There was so much opposition to this, that
Col. Moore offered a right of way through his plantation, also a depot sight. In 1858 this roadway was started,
and workmen were busy laying out the road.
This caused much talk, speculation and discord as to the influence and
bearing it would have on Middleton.
John E. Palmer and family came from Southwest Mississippi and settled early at
Middleton. His daughter, M. E.,
married Dr. William Sykes. Ellen, his
second daughter, married Md Carley,
Martha married Dr. Allen W. Gary who went to Winona lived there for a while
and moved westward. (Westward usually
meant to the Yazoo Mississippi Delta). The other members of this fine family left Carroll County. Octavia Palmer, the
youngest daughter, Married William T. Turner, a Captain in the 4th Alabama Reg. of
Virginia. Captain Robert Palmer served in the 5th Mississippi Regiment, died soon after
the War. John Palmer never
married. Phil Farmer
was a member of Company B. 15th Mississippi Regiment,
lived at Middleton, married and moved to Madison County, Mississippi. Hugh was too young to serve as a
soldier. He later moved to Tennessee.
Of the Gee and kinsmen, much could be
said and written. William and Thomas
Gee with their families lived east of Middleton and quietly spent their days
in ease and peace on their plantation.
Peter Gee was born November 16, 1803, died January 22, 1883. Peter Gee and his wife, Mary Ann Moore Gee
owned a nice home and plantation west of Middleton. It is said Mrs. Peter Gee had the finest
mantel in Middleton. (It was
marble. This house burned and most
everything in it was lost.) The Peter
Gees gave their attention to farming and their two children, Joseph James and
Mary Louise. Joseph James Gee was
educated at Middleton, where there were very fine schools, at an early age
went to work in a mercantile establishment in Middleton. He was a Lieutenant in the 4th Mississippi Regiment; later he was a
Captain and Major and was brevited Lieutenant
Colonel at the last of the Civil War.
He came to Carrollton and entered the firm of
Bingham and Gee but later formed his own firm, J. J. Gee and Sons. This firm is still in operation, has been
since 1882. Major J. J. Gee, as he was better known,
married Miss Charlie A. Kinbrough. They had three boys and three girls; sons
Charles J. Gee, Orman K. Gee, Clinton L. Gee;
daughters Mary Gee, Florence Gee, and Stella R. Gee all of Carrollton.
Mary Louise Gee, daughter
of Peter and Mary A. Gee, married a business man of Carrollton, Robert Leroy
Bingham. He has one son, Tom
Bingham by his first marriage. One son by his second marriage, Joseph Reid Bingham, who married
a Miss Eva Turner. Mr. Bingham
and his brother, Tom, engaged in the mercantile business at Carrollton for
many years, the firm known as Bingham & Company.
There is a tale told about Peter Gee
that goes thus. He owned six wagon
teams that hauled cotton from Middleton where he lived, to Greenwood for shipment to New Orleans. This team was delayed on one o its return
trips and passed through Carrolton at the hour the Methodists were having
their Sunday morning worship. The team
bells on the harness, drivers popping their whips, and calling to the teams
made so much noise the Methodists complained bitterly and said the noise
disturbed their worship. The Session
called Mr. Gee in wanting him churched.
They could do nothing about this matter, as the team train was
providentially delayed by a breakdown.
All Peter Gee would say they will start out on time, if they break
down that would be providential hinderance; so the
Methodist Session decided not to go against Providence.
Three brothers, John, Samual, and Lucien Young came at an early date when quite
young to Middleton. They were most
worthy young men and made good citizens.
They were merchants and engaged in tanning and a shoe factory until
after the Civil War. Samuel and John
died soon after the war. Of Sam’s
family, John William Young, the eldest of three sons was a doctor; he was a
Confederate soldier, a Presbyterian, and a planter, lived in Beat 2 of Carroll County, at Teoc for a few years then moved and practiced medicine at
Grenada. Sam, his
brother, engaged in business in St. Louis, Missouri. Harry, the youngest son, removed to Tennessee and practiced law and
died in Tennessee. The oldest sister married and also lived in
The second sister, Elizabeth Young, married John S. McCain, and lived
at Teoc on the McCain Plantation. The youngest, Miss Kate Young, died while a young woman.
The early lawyers who settled in
Middleton were Gould and Carpenter.
Walter Gould came from New England, was
highly educated but could not adapt himself to his new circumstances. He tried law, taught school at Middleton,
and after the War settled down as a surveyor, later was elected
superintendent of education. His son,
Walter, was a successful lawyer in Webster County.
The early doctors were Dr. Allen W.
Gary, H. B. Atkins, Dr. Satterwhite, Dr. Lipscome, Dr. J. W. Holman, Dr. H. B. Danbridge,
and Dr. W. W. Liddell, Dr. Montgomery, and Dr. W. B. Ward came later.
The Gold Rush of 1849 came, and Dr. Dainbridge joined with many of his fellow townsmen and
went to California. He later returned with some of the others
There were many fine settlers in
Middleton, too many to give histories of all but a few were: The James, Webb,
Collins, Rays, Blaylock, Penticost, Joiners, Scrivinas, Bibbs, Sawyers, Townsends, brothers Alexander Mc C. Townsend, Christian
Herring Townsend, Bakers, Herrings, W. McFather, Yelvertons, Sandridge, Kents, Taylors, McLeans, Strongs, Gooches, Steadman, Stevens, Pullen, Sturdivants,
Coopwoods, Halls, Samuel Jenkins, William Barrow,
W. Z. Collins, John E. Palmer, George A. Hogsetts,
John E. Palmer, Huffman, Mr. Y. Harrison, Whitehad,
Anders Wood, Young brothers, Campbells, Reeses, James Jones, James Penticost,
James Collins, Joe Eubanks, Smalls, Goza, Harry Merrett, Jack Turner, Hugh and Lewis Davis, John P.
Thompson, Stovalls, Mary Baskin, Ned Inman, Mrs. Dubard, Doyles, Cullpeppers, John Tulard, W. H.
When the Civil War closed a new town had
been started on Col. O. J. Moore’s place two miles east of Middleton. In 1858 as previously stated Col.
Moore was interested in this railroad.
In 1859 the Mississippi Central ran by his place,
he having agreed to give them a right of way and ground for a station. The survey was made, and the station site
agreed upon. Winona was selected as the name
which comes from the Dakota Indian dialect and means the first born of a
One by one the merchants of Middleton
moved their businesses to the new town.
Not all of the people in Middleton moved to Winona. Some went back to Tennessee and Kentucky. Others moved to Carrollton and nearby towns. In 1859 when the construction
gang from the south finished the Mississippi Central and passenger
trains were going in both directions a large crowd gathered at Winona to celebrate the driving
of the Golden Spike, emblem of the finished road.
It was then that the bells of the
locomotives sounded the death knell of the Athens of the State of Mississippi.”
Article Endnotes: “The material for this history of Middleton
has been acquired from: Field Records and notes at Carrollton, Carroll
County, Mississippi; Court House; W. P. A. History of Carroll County; Mr. T.
J. Holmes; Article on Middleton; W. F. Hamilton’s History of Carroll County;
David Duncan’s History of Carroll County; Archives at Jackson; Annals of
Carroll County by W. F. Hamilton; Mrs. Sam Young and Mrs. Emmons of Winona;
Conservative, Carrollton newspaper; Carrollton, Carroll County, Mississippi;
also Mississippi by Dunbar Rowland LLD Vol. II, page 232 (1907)”
the 1860 Census of Carroll County, Mississippi
The following information
is taken from the 1860 Census of Carroll County, Mississippi, which appears on pages 1 – 19 of the Census Books. According to those figures, there were 409 White Males, 340 White Females, and 1 Colored Female
listed. Of these, 156 children were enrolled in
schools, 3 citizens were blind, and 5 were of foreign
birth. The cumulative valuation of
Real Property was $461,125.00, and the cumulative
valuation of Personal Property was $1,193,833.00. This is the last year that Middleton would
appear on the Census, due to abandonment of the town in favor of moving
closer to the railroad at Winona. The move was in progress at the time of this
Places of family origin
are listed as follows: North Carolina, Georgia, Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, Kentucky, South Carolina, Scotland, South Africa, Virginia, England, Ireland, Arkansas, Maine, New Jersey, Spain, New Brunswick, Louisiana, and Ohio.
Family names were as
Applegate, Atkins, Barrow,
Beckwith, Bennett, Bibb, Bird, Blackwell, Blalock, Bledsoe, Blount, Bradley,
Brown, Carpenter, Chotham, Coalson,
Collins, Curtis, Davis, Elliott, Eskridge, Finley, Forelance?, Freeman, Gary, Gee, Gibson, Given, Gooch,
Grantham, Hammonds, Harvey, Heilipper?, Herring,
Holman, Hood, Howell, Kelton (or Skelton), King,
Landers, Lipscomb, Lott, McBride, McCarroll, McCoy,
McLean (or McLeon), McMahon, McNeal, McWilliams,
Merrill, Morgan, Mortimer, Neighbors, Palmer, Pamula?,
Pasham, Patterson, Pearce, Penticost,
Pitman, Pratt, Putman (or Pitman), Ratliff, Ray, Reeves, Riddle, Rofs, Rose, Ruse, Sailes,
Savage, Sawyer, Scrivner, Scruggs, Shelton, Shrivez?, Skinner, Spivey, Sprouce,
Stokes, Stovall, Swims, Townsend, Tyson, Vance, Wadlington,
Webb, Whitehead, Whitley, Williams, Woods, Wright, Young, and Ysainus?
Note: Middleton and Shongalo
were both incorporated on the same day: February 22, 1840,
and were both abandoned in the same year; 1859.