Thursday, April 17, 2014

Lucinda "Granny" White

Grave of Granny White
  Lucinda "Granny" White was 60 years old when she moved to Nashville in 1803 from North Carolina with her two sons Thomas and Willis. Her husband Zechariah died sixteen years earlier in North Carolina. She started selling her baked goods from a stand on Granny White Pike. She eventually made enough money to buy fifty acres of land in what is now the Inn's of Granny White Subdivision. She built a tavern there in 1812 that became known for it's good food, hospitality, comfortable beds and home brewed whisky. The tavern served the travelers coming in from the Natchez Trace four miles to the west. Her children gave her the name "Granny" and the name was soon taken up by her customers. Granny White died about 1816 at the age of 73. This is how Granny White Pike got it's name. During the battle of Nashville there was a lot of fighting around the site of Granny Whites Tavern. After the collapse of Confederate General John Bell Hoods left flank on Shy's Hill the Confederate Army was routed and using Franklin road as it's primary route of retreat. Union Calvary tried to cut across from Granny White Pike by a country road now called Maryland Way. Hood dispatched General James Chalmers to stop this attempt to cut off Hoods retreat. Barrels and other debris was strewn across the road to slow down the Union attack. This became known as the battle of the Barrels or Barricade. It was one of the most violent cavalry encounters of the war. Much of it occurred at night and during the battle Rucker accidentally rode into a group of Union Cavalrymen and realizing he was surrounded engaged the Union commander Colonel Spaulding in a sword fight using cavalry sabers. Their arms became entangled and somehow they swapped sabers. Years later the sabers were returned to the original owners. Colonel Rucker was shot in the arm and captured. The battle lasted until about midnight. The Confederates were successful in buying time for Hood's army to retreat. The fight between Colonel Rucker and Colonel Spaulding is etched in stone at the entrance of Princeton Hills subdivision off of Murray Lane. In the 1970's I hunted for Civil War relics on a very steep hill overlooking the Granny White grave and tavern site. I found many brass shell casings and Burnside bullets which indicated a lot of Cavalry action on that hill. One day as my brother-in-law Hulon and myself were descending the hill we ran into Ralph Emory, who was also a relic hunter. I have run into him at least three times in my life and I have found that he is not the friendliest guy in the world. I hate to say that about a fellow East High graduate but that was my impression of him.

        

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