Micajah Durham

Male 1804 - 1864  (~ 60 years)


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  • Name Micajah Durham 
    Born 0___ 1804  Rutherford County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 2
    Gender Male 
    Religion Baptist  [1
    Military CSA Veteran - KIA  [1
    Died 0___ 1864  Spotsylvania County, Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 2
    Buried Sunset Cemetery, Shelby, Cleveland County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Person ID I47401  The Hennessee Family
    Last Modified 1 Feb 2017 

    Father Charles Alexander Durham,   b. 5 Jun 1773, Orange County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 13 Mar 1850, Cleveland County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 76 years) 
    Mother Patience Davis,   b. 21 May 1772, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 20 Feb 1862, Cleveland County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 89 years) 
    Married 31 Jan 1792  [3
    Family ID F8796  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Ester McDowell Baxter,   b. 0___ 1817,   d. 0___ 1868  (Age ~ 51 years) 
    Married 0___ 1835  [1, 2
    Children 
     1. Plato Durham,   b. 20 Sep 1840, Rutherford County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 9 Nov 1875, Shelby, Cleveland County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 35 years)
    Last Modified 15 Oct 2018 
    Family ID F17400  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 0___ 1804 - Rutherford County, North Carolina Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 0___ 1864 - Spotsylvania County, Virginia Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBuried - - Sunset Cemetery, Shelby, Cleveland County, North Carolina Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 

  • Notes 
    • Micajah Durham was born 1804 in Rutherford County, North Carolina. He was named for his uncle, Micajah Davis, brother of Patience Davis Durham. A man of wealth, Micajah owned a 3,000 acre plantation in Rutherford County and more than 100 slaves. At the age of 31, he married Esther McDowell Baxter, built a mansion of logs that he furnished with golden candlesticks and rosewood furniture, and set out to raise a family that eventually included 13 children.

      Although he had little formal schooling, Micajah was a man who thirsted for knowledge and culture. He taught himself by collecting books and devouring them until he was considered one of the best educated men in all Western North Carolina. He brought teachers and lecturers into his home to provide an education not only for his own children, but also those of his neighbors. He engaged preachers to bring the word of God into the community, and he founded the High Shoals Baptist Church.

      During the 1840's and 1850's, Micajah helped his ailing brother, Achilles, in the management of the High Shoals Iron Works which Achilles owned. Between supervising his plantation and managing the iron works, Micajah somehow found time to travel about the land in an effort to broaden his own knowledge of the world beyond his own doorstep. In 1850 he rode horseback some 1200 miles just to hear Jenny Lind, the "Swedish Nightingale" who was brought by Phineas T. Barnum to America for a series of concerts.

      Micajah Durham was a confirmed advocate of States' Rights. It is said that he made the first secession speech on the steps of the Capitol in Raleigh, being denied the right to make it inside the house. He was one of three delegates sent from Rutherford County to the Secession Convention that met in Raleigh from May 20 to June 28, 1861. Secession was unanimously approved, and after war was declared Micajah made many speeches in his county, urging the young men to join the Southern cause. At that time, he did not think that the war would last over a few months and predicted that there would be little bloodshed.

      On July 18, 1862, at the age of 58, Micajah became a volunteer in the Confederate Army. He must have lied about his age, because the record shows that he was 35. He enlisted in Lane's Brigade, Company E of the 18th North Carolina Regiment of Infantry, as a private along with one of his younger sons, Taylor, then age 16. Micajah was hospitalized in Richmond, Virginia, for a shell wound to his left thigh on June 12, 1863. He came home after being in Richmond, and told his wife that he had been mistaken for President Jefferson Davis several times by people on the streets. He returned to duty in late 1863, and was killed May 6, 1864, at the Battle of the Wilderness in Virginia.

      * [1]
    • Birth: 1804
      Death: 1864


      Family links:
      Parents:
      Charles Alexander Durham (1773 - 1850)
      Patience Davis Durham (1772 - 1862)

      Spouse:
      Esther McDowell Baxter Durham (1817 - 1868)

      Children:
      Patience Durham (1837 - 1855)*
      Plato Durham (1840 - 1875)*
      Scipio Durham (1842 - 1861)*
      Taylor Durham (1849 - 1864)*

      Siblings:
      D D Durham (1792 - 1818)**
      Lemnel Durham (1798 - 1881)*
      Rebecca Durham Washburn (1803 - 1873)*
      Micajah Durham (1804 - 1864)
      Charles Crawford Durham (1814 - 1897)*

      *Calculated relationship
      **Half-sibling

      Note: Family links provided by Heather Hawkins Rehn

      Burial:
      Sunset Cemetery
      Shelby
      Cleveland County
      North Carolina, USA

      Created by: Richard Jordan
      Record added: Jun 12, 2009
      Find A Grave Memorial# 38265339 [2]

  • Sources 
    1. [S10324] "Rocky Strickland's Genealogy: Durham", pedigree for Roscoe Lee Strickland, III, abstracted, downloaded and published We.

    2. [S10331] "Micajah Durham" profile, abstracted, downloaded and published Wednesday, February 1st, 2017 by David A. Hennessee, info.

    3. [S2900] Richard Olin "Ricky" Toms | Telephone interview, September 22, 2014 | 704.600.5564 | 1fireball@bellsouth.net.