John Drury Logan

Submitted by:  David Boehmer


John Logan was born March 22, 1859 in Union County, Georgia.  He was the third child of CPT William Reuben Logan and Mary F. Reid Logan.  Mary died in 1859, the year John was born and his father remarried, to Martha Jane Hughes Addington, November 18, 1860.  Family tradition says that Mary died from complications in the birth of John.  John married Margaret Evaline Martin on January 2, 1879.  They had the following ten children:

    Fleeta K. Logan (22 Jan 1880 – 12 May 1963 ) married John Churmley Pemberton
    Wilar Ransom Logan (29 May 1882 – 18 Apr 1979) married August Luther Crowe
    Harvey Reed Logan (2 Dec 1883 – Apr 1975 ) married Dela Pemberton, sister of John
    Thomas Marshall Logan (8 Sep 1885 – 10 Dec 1917) married Delpha Secton
    Joseph Cleveland Logan (11 Apr 1888-12 Feb 1978) mar(1)Lola V Carroll(2)RubyPayne
    Willie Martin Logan (23 May 1891- Feb 1972) mar. (1) J.Crye(2) C.Fisher(3) T.Lemon
    David C. Logan (17 Oct 1893 – 1 Sep 1896)
    Robert F. Logan (15 Jan 1896 - ) married Clara Maher
    George Dewey Logan (3 Sep 1899 – 21 Jul 1981) married Beulah Parks
    Julius H. Logan (5 Sep 1901 – 20 Sep 1902)

Though John was born in 1859 in Union County, his family is not listed there in the 1860 Census.  The family was possibly residing elsewhere in 1860, probably in or near Bradley County, Tennessee.  This is likely for several reasons.  First, Mary’s parents, John and Nancy Reid, may have resided in Bradley County in the early 1830s, and were certainly there from 1860 through 1880.  Second, when John’s father, William R. Logan, joined the 4th Georgia Cavalry (originally the 23d BN of the GA Cav) of the Confederate Army he is listed as residing in Bradley County, Tennessee.  That was about in 1862.  Third, William R’s brother Joab lived much of his adult life in Cleveland, Bradley County.  Joab married women from Bradley County. And, in Joab’s Widow’s Application for a Civil War Pension, witnesses state that Cpt William Reuben Logan had told Joab’s mother, on several occasions, that Joab was a good soldier. Joab’s mother-in-law, Martha Reid Barnett, was Cpt William R. Logan’s sister-in-law.  Fourth, in William R’s request for an artificial limb, in 1864, he gives his address as Cleveland, Tennessee.

The 1870 Union County Census shows John living with the William R. Logan family in Blairsville.  He is also listed, in the same census, with the family of his grandparents, Drury and Mary “Polly” Logan.  Family lore tells us that John lived much of his childhood with his grandfather because the Mary Reid Logan children were not fully accepted by their step-mother, Jane.  This could be correct; but another possibility is that the grandparents had to help out with the children due to William R’s deteriorating mental and physical condition following the Civil War, in which he lost a leg in battle.

John’s father, William R., was admitted to the Georgia State Sanitarium in Milledgeville in December of 1875.  The doctor’s report states that he died in April of 1876.  Officials at the present hospital say that he died there as a patient and was probably buried on the grounds.  He has no known Union County gravesite.  He was probably buried in an unmarked grave.  The vast majority of the hundreds of graves at the Sanitarium are unmarked.

The 1880 Union County Census has Martha Jane Hughes living in Blairsville with two children.  She is, of course, widowed and our John has married and moved out.

John married Margaret Evaline (Evie) Martin on January 2, 1879, in Union County, Georgia.  John was nearly twenty years old, and Evie was nearly eighteen.  Evie descended from a prominent family.  Her grandfather, William Harvey Penland, was a member of the House of Representatives in Union County (1849-1850).  He was a member of the Constitutional Convention of 1865.  Her father, John Erwin Martin, was a Civil War Veteran.

MEMORIES OF MARIE GRIFFITH:  of her mother’s recollections and stories

Annotations are added by David Boehmer, and are within parentheses.  (Marie is the daughter of Willar Logan Crowe and Gus Crowe.  Wilar was the second child of John D. Logan and was the sister of Willie M. Logan)

John Drury Logan’s mother (Mary Reid) died when John was born, or soon thereafter.  He was raised by his granddaddy.

Granddaddy, John, used to say that when he was just a child, perhaps ten or eleven years old, that he met Evie (Evaline) and was struck by her beauty and charm.  And, he said at that young age, “Someday I am going to marry her.”  And he did.

John was a “spiffy” dresser.  He would wear a dark suit, white shirt and a bow tie.  And he always wore a tall top hat when dressed up.   Dressed thusly he would ride a carriage to town or to church.

John was always a bit resentful that his half-brothers and half-sisters were college educated but that he and his full-brother and sister did not get the same opportunity.  He thought his father William R. and his step-mother Martha Jane were not fair. (Step-brother William H. was a school-teacher.  Other evidence has not been found to further substantiate John’s claim.)

The John D. Logan family moved to Ducktown, Polk County, Tennessee and John worked as a mail carrier.  Wilar was about two and Fleeta was about four years old. (This would have been about 1884.  The 1880 Census for Fannin County, Georgia places them in the Morganton District of Fannin County at that time.  They were living in the same vicinity as his aunt, Sarah Rachel Reid McDaris and grandfather John Reid.  They probably moved from Union County to the Fannin County residence to be near the aunt and grandfather.  Maybe the family moved from Fannin County to Ducktown between 1880 and 1885.  The Bradley County, Tennessee census of 1900 says that sons Marshall and Joseph were born in 1884 and 1885 in Georgia.)

By May 1891 the family had moved to Cog Hill, McMinn County, TN.  No one knows for sure why the family moved from Georgia to Tennessee, but family legend is that John was running from the law in Georgia; that he was accused of involvement in a murder.  Son Willie Martin Logan was born in Cog Hill, McMinn County, Tennessee in May 1891.

Evaline Logan’s obituary in the Cleveland Daily Banner (1943) reports that “Mr. and Mrs. Logan came to Cleveland more than a half century ago and have a host of friends here.”  If this report is correct, the family would have moved to Cleveland before 1893.

According to his birth certificate, son George Dewey Logan was born in Cleveland in 1899.  The 1900 Bradley County Census has them living in Bradley County.

The 1900 census tells us that John was a worker in a woolen mill.  (It says woolingmill.)  It also tells us that Evie is a housewife.

John was a member of the Wildwood Avenue Church of God of Prophesy.

Marie Crowe Griffith says that her mother, Wilar, told her that when they first moved to Cleveland, John Logan was still a mail carrier.  They first lived near downtown, only later did they move to their home on the hill in East Cleveland.

Jennie Logan Boehmer, daughter of Willie M. Logan, and granddaughter of John and Evie recalls that John made frequent trips back to Blairsville to visit friends and relatives, especially his sister Nancy “Nan” who married Marcus Lafayette “Bud” Fortenberry.  Perhaps he felt especially close to Nan and Bud because they, being several years older, may have helped to rear him.

Apparently John had quite a good sense of humor.  The 1900 Census lists one year old son, George, as “Admiral George D. Logan”.  Even though George was almost surely named for the then popular Admiral George Dewey, he was neither named Admiral, nor was he in fact an admiral.  He was, after all, only one year old.  It seems that John might just have been having a little fun with the census taker; perhaps some naïve, young man.

The hill on which the John Logan family dwelt overlooks the city of Cleveland.  It is known locally as Logan Hill.  John died at home at 995 Eleventh St. N.E. on June 23, 1955, at age ninety-six.  According to his obituary in the Cleveland Daily Banner, the Rev. M. A. Thomlinson, Malcom Linkous, and M. E. Littlefield officiated his funeral.  He was survived by two daughters, four sons, and sixty-five grandchildren.  He is buried at Fort Hill Cemetery.


Consider this:

John could recollect slavery and the Civil War.  A war in which there were no aircraft, tanks, nor jeeps; relatively few repeating rifles, and virtually no submarines.

He could also recollect both World Wars with plenty of aircraft (and the introduction of the jet), tanks, personnel carriers, automatic weapons, submarines, and atomic bombs.

He lived the first forty years of his life without seeing a car or a plane.  In these years he could send a telegraph, but had never heard of a telephone.  He could ride a train, but not a bus.  Mostly he rode a mule or a horse, or just walked.  He burned oil, not electricity.

He saw the advent of the car, airplane, jet, telephone, electricity, indoor plumbing, radio, baseball, television, vaccines, modern genetics, and women working outside the home; college and pro football and basketball, the theory of relativity, and the theory of evolution by natural selection.


Jane Colmenares - County Coordinator
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