"James Dillard as the youngest son of Revolutionary soldier John Dillard and his only son to settle with him in Rabun County is the root ancestor of the Rabun County, Georgia Dillards. Census records disclose that James Dillard, was born in Buncombe County, North Carolina. His date of birth in the handwritten Mary Ritchie Dillard family records and on his grave stone is given as December, 1792 with no specific date of the month.
His wife, Sarah Barnard Dillard, was a native of South Carolina. This is set out in Rabun County, Georgia census records. Her date of birth in handwritten Mary Ritchie Dillard family records is given as February 3, 1795. At the time of Sally's marriage to James Dillard on February 28, 1816 she was living with her family in Buncombe County, North Carolina where Luke Barnard was recorded on the 1800 Buncombe County census and documented as owning real estate in that county as early as 1807.
On May 5, 1814, which was two years before his marriage James Dillard purchased from John Strother 100 acres of land on Flat Creek in Buncombe County adjoining his father, John Dillard, on the northeast. Census records of Rabun County, Georgia indicate that the first three children, Caroline, Ann Marinda and Cynthia Arzelia, of the eight children born to James Dillard and Sarah Barnard Dillard, were born in Buncombe County, North Carolina.
With the Treaty of February 27, 1819 Cherokee lands were ceded to Georgia and became Rabun County. Survey teams came into the new area to survey the five original districts. The state sold lots at a land lottery. James Dillard afterwards in 1821 and 1823 purchased from third parties, who were original grantees from the State of Georgia in the state lottery, four of these lots designed on the survey as Lots 162, 163, 174, and 175. This was the prime property in the county because it consisted of Little Tennessee River bottom land. James Dillard in 1833 in Deed Book A, Page 474 acquired at a sheriff’s sale an additional 50 acres a part of Lot 191.
James Dillard and his young family with his father and mother then in their sixties migrated from Buncombe into new created Rabun County between 1821 and 1823. The Rabun County four lots comprised present Dillard, Georgia. James Dillard served as a justice of the peace when local government in Rabun County was organized. He served in the House of Representatives from that county in 1824. He conducted in 1821 the marriage of Joseph Young and Peggy Barnard, his wife's twin sister. Ritchie, id., page 262. He served as a justice of the Rabun County Inferior Court in 1824 and 1825.
The May 20, 1832 journal of Jesse R. Siler mentions that James Dillard was economically doing well. Rabun County Tax records in 1836 list James Dillard as the owner of 700 acres or land and six slaves in Rabun County. James Dillard along with others petitioned Georgia Governor George R. Gilmer at Milledgeville on February 21, 1838 for a cavalry to be stationed at northwestern Rabun County for the protection of the citizens and property of the county when the time arrived for the removal of the Cherokee Indians in the “Trail of Tears”.
The 1840 Rabun County census lists James Dillard and his wife as up to fifty years of age with three sons and three daughters in their household. The 1850 Rabun County census lists James Dillard, age 58, with his wife, Sarah, age 54, and children in his household John B., age 23, Nancy, age 21, William, age 18, Margaret, age 14, and James B. Lambert, age 8. Although there is no known record he was ever a member of that church in 1853 James Dillard conveyed a part of his property for the construction of the present the Head of the Tennessee Baptist Church. This deed provided that the property was “for the use and benefit of the Baptist Church and when not occupied by Baptist Ministers to be used by other Ministers of ‘orthodox faith’.”
In 1832 he was an appraiser for the estate of John Johnston and a purchaser of personal property in that estate. He was a purchaser of personal property in the estate of James Martin in the same year. He was an appraiser in the estates of James M. White and Edward Carter in 1838. He was a purchaser of personal property from the White Estate in the next year. He was an administrator of the estate of Ira Nicholson in 1840.
The censuses of Rabun County list James Dillard as a farmer. He also owned and operated a grist mill on Betty's Creek near the site of the present Dillard United Methodist Church. After the death in 1842 of their oldest child, Caroline Lambert, in childbirth complications, James Dillard and Sarah Barnard Dillard took in and raised James R. Lambert, Caroline’s only child. Lambert family folklore passes on the story that Sarah Barnard Dillard on the death of her daughter rode horse back from her home in Dillard, Georgia to Franklin, North Carolina, and rode back with James R. Lambert in her arms. Sarah Barnard Dillard was then in her late forties. James Dillard deeded all of his real estate prior to his death to his three sons beginning in 1852.
The 1860 Rabun County census lists James Dillard, age 67, and his wife, Sarah, age 65 with only James R. Lambert age 17 in their household. James Dillard died July 18, 1861 and is buried next to his father, John, in the Head of the Tennessee Baptist Church Cemetery at Dillard, Georgia. It is widely accepted that Sarah Barnard Dillard who died on April 6, 1876 is also buried there. Her grave is unmarked. The dates of death of earlier family members suggest that a Dillard cemetery existed on this property prior to its gift to Head of the Tennessee Baptist Church. The Rabun County Inferior Court at the October, 1861 term admitted the will of James Dillard to probate and appointed J. B. Dillard and William F. Dillard as administrators with the will annexed in that the will had failed to name any executors. Application was made to the court for leave to sell the slaves belonging to the estate."
October 15, 1850 - 536 M. District Gen., Raybun County, Georgia, on 1850 census, James B Lambert, M, 8, South Carolina
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On 5 Dec 2014 at 18:08 GMT Mags Gaulden wrote:
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