John P. DAVIS, planter and miller of Bradley County, was born in McMinn County, April 23, 1843, the son of Henry B. and Nancy (PICKENS) DAVIS. The father was of Scotch descent, and it is not known of what extraction the mother was, but her ancestors probably came from England. The father was born in Roane County, Tenn., April 26, 1817, and died in Bradley County, near Cleveland, April 13, 1882. The mother was a native of South Carolina, was born in Pendleton District, September 14, 1817, and is still living, a resident of Cleveland, The parents were married in McMinn County November 28, 1838. After their marriage they came to Bradley County, where they lived two or three years, then moved back to McMinn County, and resided there up to the year 1851, at which time they went to Cleveland and permanently settled. The father organized the stock company that built the Cleveland Flouring Mill, and for a number of years superintended the interests of the mill. He organized the stock company that established the first bank in Cleveland after the war. Mr. DAVIS was a stockholder and a director of this bank until his death. He was also connected with the E. V. & G. R. R. as a director for several years, and was a stockholder for a number of years. In his political views he was in sympathy with the Republican party. He was a member of the Methodist Church. The mother was a member of the same church. Our subject is the second of six children and the only son. He secured a liberal education in his youth, and attended Hiwassee College. He began life for himself by entering the employ of the Government of the United States, in June, 1863, as wagon master of Gen. James SPEARS' brigade, continued about two months, then was clerk in the commissary department in the same brigade three months, was then forage master two months. He returned home in January, 1864, and was engaged in farming until the 1st of August, at which time he was employed as forage master by Capt. HARVEY at Cleveland; remained in HARVEY's employ about three months, then served nine months as clerk in the commissary department under Lieut. John MITCHELL. After the war he returned home, and, in partnership with his father and John OSMENT, went into the mercantile business at Cleveland, and continued fourteen months. In August, 1866, he went to Georgetown, established a store of general merchandise, and thus continued until October, 1868. He was also engaged in farming two years at this place. In the fall of 1868 he purchased and settled on a farm on Candy Creek, in the Tenth District, six miles north of Cleveland, remaining eleven years. In 1879 he purchased and settled where he now lives, which is the home place of his father-in-law. He now owns upward of 580 acres in Bradley County, and a large water grist and saw mill on Mouse Creek. On September 20, 1866, he was united in marriage to Miss Caroline CLEVELAND, who was born in Bradley County, October 30, 1847. This union has resulted in five children--two sons and two daughters living and one son dead. Our subject is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church South. His wife is a member of the same church. He has served the church as steward, and is now recording steward of the Charleston Circuit, and has been sent for the last three years as a delegate to the Holston Annual Conference. He is also secretary of the joint board of finance of the Holston Conference.
A Special "Thank You!" to Sherry Pollard for Transcribing the Goodspeed Biographies!