Capt. John W. Brinson - Co. G

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Captain JOHN WRIGHT BRINSON was the son of Moses Brinson, Jr., and Celia Tarver. He was born November 26, 1832 in Jefferson County, Georgia1, and died April 24, 1896 in Jefferson County, Georgia; buried Ways Baptist Church Cemetery, Jefferson County. He married (1) ELIZABETH H. ---- Abt. 1855. She was born May 3, 1841, and died May 1, 1857 in Jefferson Co., GA. He married (2) SARAH EUGENIA WICKER July 27, 1858 in Jefferson County, Georgia, daughter of THOMAS WICKER and MARGARET MCNEAL. She was born April 4, 1843 in Georgia, and died December 9, 1888 in Jefferson County, Georgia.

On 16 August 1860, the Jefferson County census taker visited the Brinson home in the Pope Hill postal area and recorded: John W. Brinson, age 27, farmer, real estate valued at $19,300.00, personal property valued at $59,000, born Georgia, as were all in household; Sarah E., age 18; Mary, age 1; Ebenezer B., age 10, attending school; Alice A., age 17, attending school. [Ebenezer and Alice were John's orphaned siblings.] Source: 1860 Jefferson Co., GA census, pg 415; Dwelling #559; Family #559.

During the War Between the States, he served as First Lieutenant and rose to the rank of Captain in Company G, 38th Regiment, Georgia Volunteer Infantry. His brother-in-law, Lt. Levin Farmer, also served in Co. G. His record for Co. G. reads:

Brinson, John W.- 1st Lt. 10/1/1861. Elected Capt. 9/18/1862. Resigned 1/7/1863.

The below letter tells the story behind the short entry "resigned." It seems Capt Brinson had come into conflict with Capt. William McLeod, the acting regimental commander. There was a feud during this time among the officers of the regiment and an attempt, which proved unsuccessful, was made to oust Capt. McLeod from the company.

Camp of the 38th Ga.,
Near Port Royal, Virginia
Dec 20th, 1862

To the Hon. Secty of War,

The commanding officer of the 38th Ga. Regt. In a recent report made in accordance with an Act of Congress entitled, “An Act to relieve the Army of disqualified and incompetent officers” has been cause to bring me to the attention of the Brigade Commander under charges of “Straggling and frequent neglect of duty” thereby implying my incompetency as a company commander. While I am willing to let the charges thus preferred have their full bearing on my case and am compelled to admit my incompetency in many respects, I am to well assured from the unfriendly relations which have exist and have for the last two months, existed between myself and that officer, that the above charges are prompted from disposition to do me injustice, not only on this but on all possible occasions, that I am determined to no longer, if possible, to serve under him as captain of a company, and consequently, as well as on account of a sense of incompetency in many respects, I beg to tender you my unconditional resignation as Captain of Company G, 38th Regt. Ga. Vols with the earnest request that it be accepted.

I am forced to do this from a sense of duty to myself, my company, and if the charges be true, to my country, and while I am willing and ready to serve my country in almost any capacity and know that I will be compelled to do so, I know the Department will not force me longer to remain in my present position under existing circumstances.

I have the honor to be, Sir, Your obedient Servant, John W. Brinson, Capt, Company G. 38th Ga. Regt.

John Brinson served in the Georgia State House of Representatives for Jefferson County from 1859 - 1860 and from 1884 - 1885.

In 1868 a high school was established in Sisterville and was for a long time the only one in the county outside of Louisville, the county seat. John W. Brinson, John Jones, Joshua Jordan and Noah Smith were largely instrumental in maintaining the school. The little village of Sisterville was re-named "Stellaville" in 1871 for the young daughter of John W. and Sarah Brinson. Source: History of Jefferson County by Mrs. Z. V. Thomas, 1978.

On 25 June 1880, the Jefferson County census taker visited the Brinson home and recorded: John W. Brinson, age 47, farmer, born Georgia, as were all associated with family; Sarah E., wife, age 37, keeping house; J. Butler, son, age 19, farm laborer; Anna Belle, daughter, age 15, at home; Thomas, son, age 13, farm laborer; Minnie Lee, daughter, age 11, at school; Talula, daughter, age 9, at school; Fred O., son, age 6; Celia, daughter, age 2; Robert E. Thompson, boarder, age 10, at school. John Wright Brinson served as the Enumerator of the 1880 census for Jefferson County. Source: 1880 Jefferson Co., GA census, pg 186B; Dwelling #626; Family #628.

Both John W. Brinson and his wife Sarah were very active in the Ways Baptist Church during their lifetimes, John Wright serving on many committees and representing the church in many Association meetings. When Sarah Eugenia died in 1888, the following memorial was written into the church Minutes:

Sister Brinson died on the 16th day of December 1888. She had been a member of Ways Baptist Church for about 26 years. She was one of the best women we ever knew, being kind, affectionate, obliging, and hospitable. She was much beloved by all her neighbors. In all the relations of life, as member of the church, teacher, wife, mother, and neighbor, she scarcely had a peer. She suffered much during the latter years of her life, but the patience and fortitude of the true Christian never forsook her. We have abundant reason to believe that our loss is her eternal gain. Sister Brinson was a woman of more than ordinary intelligence and was beloved by the young people of her community for her deep interest in their welfare. J. N. Oliphant, Laura Rodgers, and Mary Matthews, Committee. Source: Ways Baptist Church Stellaville, Georgia Jefferson County Minutes and History 1817-1917 transcribed by Doris Gunn Smith; 2003; pg 148.

Children of JOHN BRINSON and SARAH WICKER are:
i. MARY BOICE9 BRINSON, b. 1859, Jefferson Co., GA; d. 1863, Jefferson Co., GA.
ii. JOHN BUTLER BRINSON, b. 1860, Jefferson Co., GA; d. April 1888, Tennille, GA; killed by a train.
The following memorial was written into the church Minutes at the time of John Butler’s death:

Resolved that in the death of John Butler Brinson, Way's Church lost one of her best and purest members and this community one of its most promising Christian young men. He was noted from early childhood for his upright moral character. He connected himself with the church in 1883 at the age of 23 and as soon as he was baptized, like Paul, he inquired, "Lord, what will thou have me to do?"
From that time until the day of his lamented death he was an active consistent Christian doing with his might what his hands found to do and when death came, sudden though it was, he was ready for the summons and died triumphantly. God grant that we, like him, may be earnest while living and be ready when the "Master calleth." Furthermore resolved that we extend to the bereaved family our deepest sympathy, and that a copy of these resolutions be furnished to them, and that another be sent to the "Christian Index" for publication. Also they be spread on a page of our church book. By order of Ways Church in regular conference, March 3, 1888. Joshua A. Smith, David S. Holmes, Albert W. Way, Committee Above is a true extract from minutes of Ways Church, March 3, 1888. H. E. Smith Clerk. Source: Ways Baptist Church Stellaville, Georgia Jefferson County Minutes and History 1817-1917 transcribed by Doris Gunn Smith; 2003; pg 147.

iii. STELLA BRINSON, b. 1862, Jefferson Co., GA5; d. 1875, Jefferson Co., GA.
iv. ANNA BELLE BRINSON, b. May 13, 1864, Wayne or Jefferson Co., GA; d. April 5, 1928, Wayne Co., GA; buried Union Baptist Church, Wayne Co.. She married DOC BENNETT.
v. THOMAS BRINSON, b. 1867, Jefferson Co., GA; d. 1884, Jefferson Co., GA5.
vi. MINNIE MARGARET BRINSON, b. September 1, 1869, Jefferson Co., GA; d. July 7, 1949, Jefferson Co., GA. She married WILEY NEWTON JONES, who was born February 6, 1872, and died July 31, 1952.
vii. TALLULAH BRINSON, b. February 22, 1871, Jefferson Co., GA; d. January 7, 1961, Jefferson Co., GA5; married ROBERT ALLEN ATWELL; b. 1871; d. January 7, 1927.
viii. FREDERICK O. BRINSON, b. June 9, 1873, Jefferson Co., GA; d. October 18, 1898, Jefferson Co., GA; m. MAMIE CASWELL.
ix. CELIA TARVER BRINSON, b. February 22, 1878, Jefferson Co., GA5; d. 19685; m. CLARK OTIS PAUL.
x. MOSES EBENEZER BRINSON, b. January 1883, Jefferson Co., GA; d. 1936, Asheville, North Carolina; married MARY ELIZABETH BENNETT.

Compiled and researched by Janice Newton Thurmond, Marietta, Georgia, a Brinson descendant.

Photos courtesy of Ms. Beverly Roberts, thank you!

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