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Penitentiary Inmates Buried at City Cemetery

Nineteen penitentiary inmates buried at the City Cemetery have finally received wooden markers. For more information on the Project, click here, and for an account of John Hill, a contemporary of these men and survivor of his time in the penitentiary, click here.

penitentiary markers

Penitentiary Cholera Victims 1833

ID Name County Note
281092 Miles Allen Wilson Co.  
281093 William Baldwin Overton Co.  
281094 Beasley Barbee Giles Co.  
281095 Gibson Cate McMinn Co.  
281096 John Delk Campbell Co.  
281097 John Dougan Franklin Co.  
281098 Redding R. Hall Tipton Co.  
281099 Thompson Jones Davidson Co.  
281100 Samuel Kerr Davidson Co.  
281101 Hazard Kesterson/Hesterson Anderson Co.  
281102 Garland G. Lucas Sullivan Co.  
281103 Wm. B. McCracken Maury Co.  
281104 Hugh Moore Davidson Co.  
281105 John Morrison Monroe Co.  
281106 Abram Powell Henry Co.  
281107 George W. Rogers Giles Co. alias -- Macklemar
281108 Jackson C. Thomas Davidson Co. colored
281109 Richard Willis Grainger Co.  
281110 John Yates Marion Co.  

Nineteen victims of the June 1833 Cholera Epidemic were inmates in the State Penitentiary. Their names and counties of residence prior to incarceration were listed in Nashville Republican and State Gazette, Friday, July 5, 1833. This announcement was placed in the newspaper to alert their family and friends of their deaths. The Sexton also reported in this newspaper that nineteen Penitentiary victims of Cholera had been buried in the City Cemetery during June 1833. In 2011, Gerald Moore, descendant of Hugh Moore, one of the inmates who died of Cholera, met with Fletch Coke and Fred Zahn at City Cemetery. Four years later Gerald Moore asked if the graves could be marked. The wooden markers project was successfully undertaken and completed during the summer of 2016.

Below is a copy of the Nashville Republican and State Gazette, Friday, July 5, 1833, which listed their names and counties of residence prior to incarceration.

masthead from Repulican and Gazette from July 5, 1833

Article on inmates that died of Cholera

Inmates' Names 1831 – 1870

Indexes for inmates have been made available on the Tennessee State Library & Archives website, and can be found in the links below.

Inmates of the Tennessee State Penitentiary 1831 – 1850

Inmates of the Tennessee State Penitentiary 1851 – 1870

Tennessee State Prison Records 1831 – 1992

Penitentiary in 1831
Penitentiary - 1831 - Courtesy TSLA

The records of various early years trace the relationship of the Nashville City Cemetery to the inmates of the Penitentiary, located on Church Street at Stonewall Avenue (present-day 15th Avenue), near where Baptist Hospital now stands. These records have been provided to us courtesy of the Tennessee State Library and Archives.

Penitentiary Records for 1831-33

Penitentiary Record for 1835-37

1835-37 Record from TN Penitentiary
Click on image to enlarge (use your browser's magnifying feature)

Deaths September 30, 1839 to September 30, 1841
Zechariah Herrill Claiborne - Died July 19, 1841
(volume too tightly bound to copy)

Penitentiary Records for 1843-45

Penitentiary Records for 1845-47

Penitentiary Records for 1849-51

The Nashville City Cemetery Association, Inc.
P.O. Box 150733
Nashville, TN 37215
© 2017 - Nashville City Cemetery Association

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