NE-TN-L ArchivesArchiver > NE-TN > 2006-03 > 1143206088
From: "Trueman Farris" <>
Subject: Re: [NE-TN] Fw: [chickamauga_researcher]
Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2006 07:14:48 -0600
Did I overlook when Nancy Ward died? Did she live in Grainger Co., TN?
----- Original Message -----
From: "Joyce G. Reece" <>
Sent: Friday, March 24, 2006 5:54 AM
Subject: [NE-TN] Fw: [chickamauga_researcher]
> For those of you not familiar with the name Nancy Ward she was a Cherokee
> Beloved Woman whose reputation is much too long and storied for me to tell
> here. Just let it be said that she is probably the most well know
> Cherokee Woman in history.
> When she died JD Clemmer said he saw her spirit rise from her body. He
> was 4 at the time and told the tale all his life. She is buried just
> south of Benton, Polk County, Tennessee. It is now a state park. Just
> last summer a very moving ceremony was held to dedicate the area. It was
> attended by several prominent Cherokee leaders.
> Just after she died a stone mason in Grainger Co, TN was commissioned to
> carve a statue in her likeness for her grave site. I can't recall from
> memory the exact reason why but the statue never made it to her grave. It
> was sold and found on the grave of Maggie Farmer in Granger County where
> it resided for 70 years. In the 1940's, periodically until the 1980's
> Polk Co. Historian, Roy Lillard, campaigned to get the statue returned to
> her gravesite. They had, apparently, negotiated a deal with Maggie
> Farmer's grandson but when they went to pick it up it was gone and had
> been missing for a month.
> Apparently a Mr. Allen somehow got possession of it in Morristown, TN. It
> followed him to Florida then into Maine. After Mr. Allen died his dtr
> sold the statue to an Antique dealer there.
> In New York Mr. Richard Lawrence who is a Nancy Ward descendent saw a
> photo of the statue in an antiques show ad. He contacted the owners in
> Maine then met with them to discuss the issue. He also contacted Mr. Ray
> Smith who was aiding in the search, along with Angie King (who works for
> TN Park service near Benton). www.smithdray.net is the web site for what
> has been achieved so far
> THere is quite an article in the newspaper about it this week with more to
> come next week. I intend to call Ms. King tomorrow to see what can be
> done to help retreive the statue. THe shop that has possession of the
> statue has it priced at $165,000.00.
> Ms. King is trying to learn if Mr. Lillard had completed the negotiations
> in 1980 that would prove ownership. Pray that this happens. After being
> gone from her grave site for 170 years it is time for it to come home.
> I understand that there is people looking into the legal aspects of the
> situation. You can be sure I will keep all of you informed of how this
> progresses. Everyone in this area who is anywhere near involved in the
> history of our area is very excited.
> Joyce Gaston Reece
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