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My family history begins in western Europe. This is only a 'summary history'. An account of the history of my family and my wife's family is available by emailing a request to My family migration began in England, Scotland and Ireland and landed in Pa, Va, and NC. The first documented arrival was in the mid 1600's in Virginia. From there they migrated west over the Appalachian Mts. through the Cumberland Gap into the Middle TN Cumberland Basin region. These 350+ years resulted in a large family linkage referred to as the Bradley - Ritter - Gibson - Rice - Bullock - Eakes º Denton – Potts - Dycus º Boone – Coleman - Wilcoxson - Cutbirth - Benderman - Davis º Croswaite -Voorhies group of families. Our ancestors had already settled in the area by the time of Tennessee statehood in 1796.

Such was our early beginnings in this place called America.

Richard Hofstadter, author of 'White Servitude', describes some of the newly arriving immigrants as ‘unfree’ labor with 50+% living on indentured land; Several Bradley's living in TN in the late 1790's and early 1800's were listed as indentured landowners. Records indicate that most of our family arrived in some level of inservitude status.


We know that at lest six early Bradley settlers (perhaps brothers/cousins) came over from Va/NC between 1765 and 1780 and settled in Sumner Co., TN. They were: Edward, Edward, Jr., James, Thomas, John and George. I believe my gg grand father, Thomas Bradley, may have been the son of one of these six men(?) I have yet to prove it.

THOMAS b abt 1795 d abt 1865: gg grandfather - Thomas and Betsy Ritter is first picked up on the Sumner Co. TN Marriage Records as being married October 29, 1816. The 1830 census shows a Thomas Bradley with two sons and five daughters – the two sons (without names) fitting the birth periods of James M. 1818 and Lewis F. 1824.

JAMES MONROE b 1818 d abt 1878 - g grandfather - James M. and Mary Ann Gibson b 1822 were married in 1840 in Sumner Co.,TN, and are first picked up on the 1850 census of District 7, Hendersonville,Sumner Co., TN. By 1870 James M. and Mary A. had 13 children,7 daughters and 6 sons, all born in Sumner Co. and perhaps in Districts 7 & 8. Sometime after 1874, James and Mary moved to Cooperstown in Robertson Co., TN with their five youngest children. At least two of the older married children also moved to Robertson County during the same period.

HENRY LEE b 1859 - grandfather - Henry and Rebecca Ann Eakes were married in 1887. His family was first picked up in the 1900 census in Montgomery Co, TN. Rebecca’s death notice appeared in 1913, in the Clarksville Leaf Chronicle, listing her birth date as 1863 and her death as June 22, 1913. She was from Cannon County, TN. Henry and Rebecca had seven children, two passing away in infancy. The oldest Minnie appearing in the 1900 census as age seventeen.

JAMES BAILEY b 1893 d 1965 - father - James Bailey and Beulah Mary Denton were married in 1917. He was born in the Sango Community 15 miles from Coopertown in Montgomery Co., and later in Clarksville of Montgomery Co.,TN.
The Morris M. Bradleys of Marietta, Georgia
Updated March 16, 2009

morris melvin bradley

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