Information concerning the Blevins family was taken from available Census, Church, Land, Marriage Records and interviews with older members of the family..
William Blevins came from Fromby on the West Coast of England and Wates in the late 1600’s and settled for a time in what is now the state of Maryland. In the mid 1740’s members of his family left Maryland to settle in southwestern Virginia. From Virginia, they moved to East Tennessee and eventually to Alabama. Descendants are still found in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas and many other states. Family names, such as, James, William, Gaines, John, Richard, Emerson and Lewis are common from the beginning until the present time proving common ancestors.
Richard Blevins (1800-187?) was born in Tennessee and married Rhonda Scott of Ohio. He was a farmer and circuitriding Primitive Baptist Preacher. He preached in various churches in Marion County, Tennessee and Jackson Court, Alabama. He preached and represented churches in the Sequatchie Valley Association. In the early 1800’s many members of the Primitive Baptist Church split away to form the Missionary Baptist Church. By 1835 this church was firmly established throughout the United States, as the Missionary Baptist Church.
Richard and Rhoda Scott Blevins were the parents of nine children, at least two of whom lived in Dade County. They were Jonathan Blevins (1817-1911) and Mary Anne (Polly) 1835-1922, the mother of Rebecca Blevins Smith, lately of Rising Fawn, Georgia.
Denver Blevins of Trenton, Georgia recalled hearing his father, Hardy Blevins, (1863-1960) speak many times of his grandfather Richard Blevins.
Jonathan Blevins was married to Emily Maxwell (1820-1878) August 27, 1837 by the Rev. Samuel McBee in Marion County, Tennessee. They were of the Primitive Baptist faith. His occupation is listed as farmer and sheriff. Thirteen children were born to them.
According to the 1859 Census, Jonathan Blevins lived in Deer Head Cove, DeKalb County, Alabama. In the mid 1850’s he moved his family to the Johnson Crook area near
Rising Fawn, Georgia. Some of his children were born and married in Dade County.
Three of Jonathan’s sons, Richard, William and Lewis fought for the Confederacy under the command of Stonewall Jackson until his death. Jonathan’s younger brother, Gains, was killed by Yankee soldiers near the end of the war when they surprised him in Jonathan’s home. They told him they would take him in unless he got lost in a cane field near the house, but they shot him in the back as he entered the field.
Jonathan served as sheriff of Dade County from 1857-1873. While he was Sheriff Dade County was a slave holding community. In his first years as sheriff it was his duty to hang a Negro slave. She had taken her two small children to the spring down the hill below where the Trenton Spinning Mill is now located, and drowned them. She explained that she could not face seeing her children grow-up as slaves because her master was so cruel to his slaves. She was sentenced to die by hanging.
In the early fall of 1873, Jonathan resigned as sheriff to join a wagon train to Texas where many of his descendants still reside.
In 1871 Stephen Blevins Austin, son of Hezekiah and Nancy Jane Blevins Austin decided to move westward to Texas to improve their lot in life. Robert P. Blevins was married to Austin’s niece and he wrote to them giving glowing accounts of the rich farmland and wonders and beauties of Texas. After reading these letters and discussing them among the relatives and friends, it was thought to be to their best interest to move to Texas and the westward trek began.
Many hardships were encountered on the road. Two children died and had to be buried in Arkansas in makeshift caskets, one in a feed box and the other in a sewing machine box. Arriving in Texas, they settled in the Grapevine-Keller area near Fort Worth and Dallas. Many descendants still are found in this area, while others have scattered to Arkansas and Oklahoma.
Emerson Blevins (1854-1929) and his wife, Paralee Smith Blevins (1853-1937) returned to Dade County with their infant son, James Lee (1874-1947) to live the remainder of their lives born in Dade County. A daughter, Beulah Beatrice (1878-1952) was born in Rising Fawn Georgia. She was married to Lee Forester and they were the parents of Jamie Lee Forester Dickerson of Trenton. Emerson was an expert blacksmith, millwright and farmer. He operated Cureton’s Mill and Sitton’s Mill on Lookout Creek near Trenton. He worked in the Cole City and Durham mines and when U.S. Highway 11 was in the process of building, hand drills were used and he followed the road crews keeping their tools in working order. This family lived in Risimg Fawn, Johnson’s Crook and other communities in Dade County. About 1900, they moved to the New England Community where they spent the rest of their life. James Lee, son of Emerson, was a farmer, blacksmith and stock-breeder. He was married to Laura Jane Allison, they were active in church and school activities. Along with other people of Dade County they helped get the High School building in Trenton and worked to prepare the grounds for opening in 1925. They were the parents of eight children, two of which died in infancy. One son, three daughters, nine grandchildren, sixteen great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild live in the vicinity at the present time. (Used by permission HISTORY OF DADE COUNTY, GEORGIA, Retired Senior Volunteer Program, 1981)