McCracken, Wm. B.
ID # 281103
Wm. B. McCracken
Nineteen Penitentiary inmates died of Cholera during the June 1833 Epidemic in Nashville. They were buried at Nashville City Cemetery. In 2016 wooden markers were placed at the cemetery for these Cholera victims.
Fred Zahn of the Metropolitan Historical Commission was responsible for the carving of the inscriptions on the 19 wooden markers and locating where to place them at the Nashville City Cemetery. To read about his work on the project, click here.
To read the account of John Hill, a contemporary of these men and survivor of his time in the penitentiary, click here.
For more information, and to see a listing of the inmates’ names & counties of residence prior to incarceration, please see the following newspaper article in the Nashville Republican and State Gazette, Friday, July 5, 1833.
Charles A. Sherill has given permission to quote from Tennessee Convicts: Records of the State Penitentiary, Vol. I. 1831-1850, by Charles & Tomye M. Sherrill, published 1997:
“Wm. B. McCracken was received in the Penitentiary 27 September 1831. He is 23 years of age, 6′ high, weighs 166 lbs. He has blue eyes, fair skin, dark hair, and good countenance. A scar of a bile[?] and cut just above the instep of the left foot. Also a scar of a bile[?] just above the cap of the right knee. Also a small scar on the little finger of the right hand, running from the finger nail to the knuckle joint. Very small teeth. A small wen just above the forhead, the size of a marble. His father is dead. His mother lives in Randolph Co., North Carolina, on the waters of Caraway Creek, near Ashboro. He has two brothers. He has two sisters married, one to a Mr. Chalmes and one to a Mr. Hill. He has no trade. He has pedled and taught school in Randolph Co., North Carolina. Found guilty of forgery at the Circuit Court of Maury County and was sentenced to three years confinement in the Jail and Penitentiary House of the State of Tennessee. Wm. B. McCracken died of cholera on the 14th day of June 1833.[Ledger 45, p. 98]”
Research Report August 2017