William Bennett, of the Sycamore Mills area of Cheatham County, Tennessee, lived to be over 100 years old. We are lucky to have a few newspaper articles about his life that were written in the early 1900s when he was still alive.
My fourth great-grandfather has countless descendants. At the time of his death in 1912, he had sixteen living children, and over 82 grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Although William claims to have been born April 16, 1806, on the 1850 census he claimed to have been born around 1811. Nevertheless, he died on January 13, 1912, making him more than 100 years old, possibly close to 107.
We don’t know William’s parents’ names. He says he was born in Williamson County, Tennessee in 1806. When he was “about four”(dates don’t match up) in 1809, he rode in a wagon with his father to Nashville. His father cut the first boards to cover the first frame building in Nashville, where Demonville’s drug store stood in 1912. I don’t know where this was in downtown and I haven’t found out anything about the location.
Another interesting piece of the article states that William and his father had lunch with “a widow Mrs. L.T. Demonbreun, his great-aunt” at the old fort. Elizabeth Bennett was the mistress, never formal wife, of Timothy Demonbreun. She married Joseph Durrard and had children with him. She was not widowed in 1809. (Here’s more information about Timothy and Elizabeth.)
I am not sure how reliable the article is, but it’s possible that even with a few wrong details, Elizabeth Bennett was his father’s aunt. Elizabeth’s parents are unknown.
Here’s the complete article.
Newspaper articles and photo of William courtesy of Terry Durard and Gloria Proctor, ancestry.com.
William and his wife Elizabeth Bess Bennett are buried in Gupton Cemetery, likely near where they used to live. Note the street named “Bennett Road”.