George Payne (son of John Payne and ?) was born Abt. 1775 in Kershaw Co., SC, and died Abt. 1840 in Payneville, Sumter Co., AL. He married ?.
Notes for George Payne: One source lists him as "Rev. George Payne."
The following are notes received from Caren Tidwell:
George Payne came to Sumter Co., AL via a circuitous route that began in Kershaw Co., SC. His 2 oldest sons, William, & Ranson T., moved into Warren Co., TN as young men. There they engaged in farming, and began to raise their families. They lived in TN circa 1820, but by 1830 they had moved again to Pike Co., AL, where they were joined by their father George, their younger brothers Robert C., Lemuel, Daniel, & their mother and sistrs whose names are unknown.
In the 1830 Perry County Census there are listed: PAGE NAME MALES FEMS. SLAVES 69 Payne, George 1 1 21 85 Payne, Ransom T. 3 5 1 85 Payne, William 5 6 2
[ Sometime between 1830 and 1832, Sumter County, AL was formed from Choctaw Indian lands. Were the Choctaws sent to western reservations??? RCD. SOURCE: Maps of Alabama counties in book in Genealogy room at Melbourne, FL Library ]
In late 1832, or early 1833, George & his family moved to Sumter Co., AL, & with the aid of other settlers, founded the town of Payneville in 1836. The town had "sprung up overnight," there were 4 stores, several groceries & workshops, & numerous private residences. They built a crude schoolhouse that doubled as a church, and as the town grew an academy & a dancing school were built. In the early years of Payneville, the inhabitants enjoyed balls, races, & parties.
The future of Payneville looked optimistic for a time, but as an observer later noted there were some serious problems, many of the inhabitants were "idle & dissolute," & this idleness became the "order of the day," & thrift the "badge of reproach." The wildest extravagances infected every class. The key phrose for the community was "bought on credit." The town was also the scene of numerous "desparate affrays," including several gunfights resulting from disputes involving the high-stakes horse racing that was popular in the community. The glory days of Payneville came to a sudden halt with the Panic of 1837. Credit dried up; most of the stores closed; and many of the citizens chose to emigrate to TX rather than face their financial troubles in Sumter.
One can wonder of the extent of Payne families' role in the "dissolute" condition of their town but as evidence shows many held responsible positions. Ransom T. payne was the minister at the Payneville church, as well as the Justice of the Peace. When he vacated the latter position his older bother William took the office. Although most of the residents left the town after 1837, most of the Paynes stayed. George & his sons all grew old, & died there. There ws what amounted to a family compound o which most of the family lived, at one time over 12 homes remains, that of William Payne, which later was passed to his son, Ransom Sloan Payne, The tannery owned & operated by John Knox Elliott still stands, as does his home, complete with a family cemetery in the front yard. He & his family are buried there. Hadden Presbyterian Church, which was the early town church still remains but it is not the original structure, although it occupies the original site. A few hundred yards east of the William Payne's home, above the bank of the creek lies a grayard i the woods which was the Paynbe family cemetery. There are over 30 graves, but few headstones. The Paynes left little recorded history of their lives in Sumter, having passed into obscurity as did their once promising town.
(Information on the early days of Payneville was found in "A History of Sumter County, Alabama, Through 1886", by Louis Roycraft Smith. I believe this is a Ph.D. dissertation at the University of Alabama. [RCD])
More About George Payne: Fact 1: 1830, Perry [area later Sumter?] Co., AL = 1M, 1F, 21 Slaves (Source: Census.) Fact 2: 8/25/1789, Land=640. amt. Tax = 6 - 4 3/4 (Source: Sumter Co., TN Taxes.)