Thomas Thaddeus Whitefield Gill


by his eldest son, John M.F. Gill, M.D. (condensed) My father, John Thaddeus Whitfield Gill, was born July 7, 1851, in York District, S.C. He was the son of John Gaston Gill (1791-1871) and wife Anna Rebecca King (1791-19851). He was the grandson of Captain James Gill and Mary Gaston Gill, whose deaths are recorded respectively in 1809 and 1829.

My father, Thad Gill, was educated in S.C. in Blairsville Academy, He moved to Ark., in 1851 with a number of slaves and settled as a young planter three miles south of Prescott, on a large tract of land that had been given to him by his father, John Gaston Gill, who had patented it from the Government previous to Arkansas statehood, about 1832.

Father married Miss Sarah Elizabeth Steele, March 17, 1858, in Camden Ark She was born in Oxford, Miss., Feb. 22, 1838, coming to Ark., as a young child with her father and mother -- nee, Bargar. My mother's brothers William, Benjamin, and Luke Steele were pioneers of Prescott, Ark. The Gill and Bargar families were originally from Penn. My mother died March 22, 1916, at my home in 4ustin, Texas; was buried in Cameron, Tex. at my father's side whose death occurred five years earlier.

Children born to my parents were: Ernest Keener Gill, Junction City, Ark.; James Oscar Gill, Texarkana, Ark.; Percy Garland Gill, Denison, Tex.; J.M.F. Gill, Abilene, Tex.; Carrie Ella (Mrs. Tom Cobb) and Mattie Lavenia (Mrs. J.A.M. Smith).

My father and most of his children's families remained in Prescott and vicinity until the early years of 1900. My parents came to my newly established home in Cameron, Tex. in 1907.

During the Civil War, father served in the Confederate Army, Ark. Division, under Gen. Cabel, who conferred on him the Commission of Lieutenant. He was seriously wounded at the battle of Mt. Elba, Ark., and heroically rescued from the battlefield by my mother, who made a perilous night journey from her home assisted by an aged minister and a young Negro slave. My father was a Mason and had attained a Royal Arch degree during his active years. He was a member of the Cumberland Presby- terian Church, having professed Christianity in early childhood.

My father's long years as a pioneer citizen of Prescott will be recalled in association with his brother, James Monroe Gill and his wife, Julia Gill (also a cousin) and their children: Rebecca Gill Howell, Ellen Gill McSwain end Dr. John Gill, all of whom were reared in Prescott and vicinity.

Written in Abilene, Texas, June 18, 1940, at the request of Winnie Haynie (Mrs. Joe R Hamilton) 511 East Main St., Prescott, Arkansas.

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