I have been exiting the Trinity Lane exit for over a year now. After about 5 months, i noticed this fenced in area with grown up weeds surrounding 4 or 5 beautiful old trees. Jack Cawthon initially told me the Trinity Lane area was named Talbot's Corner and about 15 years ago he organized a cleanup of the cemetery that now sits oof of I-65 and Trinity Lane. As I became more intrigued with the history of Nashville North By Northeast, I did more and more research. As you may have read in a previous blog , I have a bit of a strange passion for preserving historical cemeteries, even since my youth. As a high school student I organized a clean up for a cemetery in my hometown that had historical significance to the Franklin/ Harpeth community. Why on earth would we not preserve the resting place of those who came before us? In my opinion, it is completely disrespectful to let these historical cemeteries become neglected. It hurts my heart to think that this was a place where their descendants could come to pay their family members honor and respect.
Once I started Reseaching theTalbot family, I learned so much (and continue to learn) about who they were and how they got here. I learned that Thomas Talbot, the head of the family, was a very interesting and important man regarding the history of Nashville and how we became who we are. I also learned that he owned the land in which my home sits. After learning many of my neighbors still have fruit trees in their yards, the pieces of the puzzle suddenly connected. Here is a little snipit of how the story goes: I found this article here
Thomas Talbot was born in Virginia and when a young man, moved with his father and brothers to the Watauga Settlement in what would become Tennessee, the first self-governing community in the United States. Along with his father and several of his brothers, he volunteered for militia service under John Sevier and was present at the Battle of Kings Mountain where he was wounded in the head by a musket ball. He served as the Sheriff for Washington County, North Carolina, a county that would become part of the State of Tennessee. When the citizens of the Watauga Settlement organized to form their own state government, Thomas Talbot was elected as the Clerk of the Senate for the short-lived State of Franklin. He married Ruth Greer, the daughter of another distinguished frontiersman, Andrew Greer. Together in 1785, they moved to Fort Nashborough which would in time become the city of Nashville. He purchased a large acreage north of the Cumberland River adjoining Eaton's station and extending from the Dickerson Pike to the river. Here in 1791 he built a large house and operated a plantation that included many fruit trees from which he made brandy. In 1804, together with his brother Clayton, he opened a tavern on the east side of the square that for many years would be a center of Nashville society and politics. Talbot's new tavern became the leading hotel of the city and it was here that a public dinner in honor of Aaron Burr was given by Andrew Jackson. In 1813, the tavern was the scene of the famous brawl between Andrew Jackson and John Coffee on one side and Jesee and Thomas Hart Benton on the other. Jackson was seriously wounded during this fight. Thomas Talbot was for many years one of the leading citizens of Nashville and died at his plantation home on 28 January 1831. Sometime before his death, he married Elizabeth Paw. All of his children were by his first wife, Ruth Greer.
Pretty cool huh? And a bit sad at the same time. How could a family with such impact on the Nashville community be somewhat forgotten? I even found an article dated back to 1964, where Talbot Feild ( presumably a deschendent of Thomas Talbot) wrote regarding the stones of the Talbot Family Cemetery have been destroyed, but burried there are Thomas Talbot, a Revolutionary Soldier, his wife, Ruth Greer ( daughter of Andrew Greer and sister to Joeseph Greer, Eli Talbot, and also the tomb of Thomas H. Fletcher and wife Sarah, daughter of Thomas and Ruth Greer Talbot. ( see pictures below of those tombs that I discovered)
Words written about Mrs. Ruth Greer Talbot:
Hard by the "mansion" where she lived, in the thick shade of a beautiful grove, in the valley of he little stream called " Page's Branch" , is the quiet burial ground in which is her grave beside that of her husband, Thomas Talbot. She was a woman of strong character, energetic, and industrious; the mother of eight children, and is described as " an affectionate wife, mistress, a kind neighbor and charitable to the poor" .
Wow. What I wouldn't give to have met Mrs. Ruth Greer Talbot. She is described in the Nashville Presbyterian Historical book as the type of lady I would want to know. I feel somewhat strangely connected to her because I fell in love with Page's Branch when Troy and I got lost picking up trash a couple months ago. What a beautiful little hidden water way through Nashville that I never knew existed, although I drove over it everyday.
As you look at the photos below, you will see that this important Nashville landmark is still neglected years later. It is my goal to organize a clean up crew to preserve this cemetery and honor the Talbot Family. I will be working on this the next couple of weeks, but I will need the support of the community in order to make that happen. I also would like the find a local landscaper or contractor who would be willing to donate possibly their time and supplies to re-build the fence surround the Talbot family cemetery. If you personally would be interested in lending a hand, landscaping tools, supplies or services... or have someone in mind, please reach out to me. This is a project I hope to complete prior to the end of July or August. I am hopeful we can give this family the recognition, honor, and respect they so rightfully deserve.