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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Elizabethton in Carter County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)
 

The Taylor Family

Sabine Hill State Historic Site

 
 
The Taylor Family Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 15, 2021
1. The Taylor Family Marker
Inscription.  
"Happy Valley" and Sabine Hill (1778-1853)
In 1778, during the Revolutionary War, Andrew Taylor traveled from Virginia to what would later become eastern Tennessee. Taylor settled near this location on the Powder Branch of Buffalo Creek. It was there that a young Nathaniel Taylor grew up in what the Taylor family called "Happy Valley."

Receiving land from his father, Nathaniel permanently settled in "Happy Valley" in 1791 with his bride, Mary Patton of Rockbridge County, Virginia. In 1809, he added to his land, purchasing 381 acres from Joseph S. Tipton. This expanded the Taylor property to 3,000 acres.

Nathaniel was an active member of the community. Appointed a justice of the peace for Washington County, he also served as the first sheriff of Carter County, TN, and in the state senate. Taylor rose through the ranks in the local militia from private all the way up to colonel. He was later appointed brigadier general and served under Andrew Jackson in the War of 1812 at Mobile, Alabama.

After the war, Nathaniel returned home to his wife and children, with plans to build a larger house on the property. However,

Marker detail: General Nathaniel Taylor image. Click for full size.
Source: Personal collection of Mrs. Nat Taylor Winston, Jr.
2. Marker detail: General Nathaniel Taylor
Portrait of General Nathaniel Taylor, oil on fabric,
artist unknown.
Click or scan to see
this page online
Taylor unexpectedly passed away in 1816 and never saw Sabine Hill complete. Following Nathaniel's death, his wife, Mary, took over the estate and built the house seen today.

From 1816 until her death, Mary Taylor and her children managed the family plantation including the grist mill, saw mill, iron works, and the estate. Her success in business was a rare accomplishment for a woman in the early 19th century. As a leader and a parent, Mary ensured that the plantation and her children prospered.

Enslaved People at Sabine Hill
Sources show that Nathaniel Taylor owned many slaves during his lifetime. These slaves, imported through Charleston, South Carolina, worked on his plantations and his iron works. Account books show Taylor paid $12,000 for one group of slaves. Over 20 slaves are listed in Taylor's 1826 inventory and 14 slaves were listed in an 1854 inventory.

No evidence of slave dwellings has been found near Sabine Hill. In her will, Mary Taylor stated that most of her slaves should go to close family members. She did make one exception. Mary allowed two elderly slaves named Sam and Lear "...to remain where they are and work and support themselves. Give them the use of sufficient land for that purpose and grant them as much liberty as the law permits and not to sell or separate them."

Taylor Legacy
Nathaniel and Mary Taylor's

Marker detail: 1886 "War of the Roses" image. Click for full size.
Source: Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper
3. Marker detail: 1886 "War of the Roses"
An illustration on the front page of a magazine showing "Alf" and "Bob" playing their fiddles during a debate for the 1886 "War of the Roses" election.
descendants were accomplished lawyers, ministers, and politicians. In fact, their two great grandsons, Alfred Taylor and Robert Taylor, ran against each other for the office of Tennessee governor. "Alf" ran as a Republican, and "Bob," a Democrat. This 1886 election was nicknamed the "War of Roses." At the rallies, the brothers debated and played their fiddles while the crowd members wore a red or white rose to show support for their respective candidate. Bob won the election of 1886. Both brothers served as U.S. Congressmen and Alf won the gubernatorial election in 1920.
 
Erected by Tennessee Historical Commission.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African AmericansSettlements & SettlersWar of 1812Women. In addition, it is included in the Tennessee Historical Commission series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1778.
 
Location. 36° 19.617′ N, 82° 16.134′ W. Marker is in Elizabethton, Tennessee, in Carter County. Marker can be reached from West G Street (Tennessee Route 67) 0.1 miles west of Sabine Street, on the left when traveling west. Marker is located at the Sabine Hill State Historic Site. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2328 West G Street, Elizabethton TN 37643, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow
The Taylor Family Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 15, 2021
4. The Taylor Family Marker
(Sabine Hill / General Nathaniel Taylor House in background)
flies. Uncovering the Past (here, next to this marker); Restoration of Sabine Hill (here, next to this marker); Sabine Hill (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); a different marker also named Sabine Hill (about 300 feet away); Fort Watauga Monument (approx. 0.6 miles away); Powder Branch (approx. 0.9 miles away); Cedar Grove Cemetery (approx. 1.3 miles away); Valentine Sevier, "The Immigrant" (approx. 1˝ miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Elizabethton.
 
Regarding The Taylor Family. National Register of Historic Places #73001755.
 
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. Sabine Hill State Historic Site
 
Also see . . .
1. Sabine Hill (Wikipedia). Taylor named the house Sabine Hill, apparently in imitation of Sabine Hall, the Virginia estate of Landon Carter, and is said to have hired a Philadelphia architect to design the home. His wife, Mary "Polly" Patton Taylor, completed the project circa 1818–20, after her husband's death. She outlived her husband by 37 years, presiding over Sabine Hill until her death in 1853. (Submitted on June 5, 2021, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

2. Nathaniel Green Taylor (Wikipedia). Nathaniel Green Taylor
Sabine Hill State Historic Site Entrance on West G Street image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 15, 2021
5. Sabine Hill State Historic Site Entrance on West G Street
(1819–1887) was an American lawyer, farmer, and politician from Tennessee. He was U.S. Representative from Tennessee from 1854 to 1855, and again from 1866 to 1867, and Commissioner of Indian Affairs from 1867 to 1869. His paternal grandfather, General Nathaniel Taylor (1771–1816), was among the area's early settlers, and began the construction of Sabine Hill. His maternal grandfather, Landon Carter, an American Revolutionary War veteran, was the man for whom Carter County was named. (Submitted on June 5, 2021, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Sabine Hill (General Nathaniel Taylor House) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 15, 2021
6. Sabine Hill (General Nathaniel Taylor House)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 5, 2021. It was originally submitted on June 4, 2021, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 80 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on June 4, 2021, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.   6. submitted on June 5, 2021, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.

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Jun. 18, 2021