Tuesday, April 15, 2014

No biography of US Senator William Cocke who served in 4 state legislatures and fought with Boone and Jackson and Married Grandma Sims

What does it take to get someone to write a biography of such an interesting man?--my step-GGGG Grandfather who was very good to the grown children of his second wife including my GGG Grandfather Absalom Sims. Anyone who could laugh about his "big pile of logs"--the two story dog trot cross hall log house on a cliff above the Tombigbee River in Columbus, Mississippi, on the site now occupied by the Tennessee Williams Welcome Center! That's a self-deprecating man you would like! I have found some interesting controversial stuff in contemporary newspapers but really know very little. Did he know the Sims family in Hawkins County before they made the Sims Settlement and were expelled (burnt out twice) by soldiers on the orders of President Madison (carrying out Thomas Jefferson's order)? When did he marry the widow of Parish Sims, who died as one of the "Sims Intruders"? I can't write a full biography but someone should. At least I can give him a place in "ORNERY PEOPLE: WHAT WAS A DEPRESSION OKIE?"

William Cocke's ancestors, see the Ancestors of William Cocke Genealogy Report.
     "COCKE, William, (father of John Cocke and grandfather of William Michael Cocke), a Senator from Tennessee; born in Amelia County, Va., in 1748; pursued preparatory studies; studied law; was admitted to the bar and practiced; in company with Daniel Boone explored the territory of eastern Tennessee and western Kentucky; successfully led four companies of Virginians against hostile Indians in 1776 in Tennessee; member, Virginia house of burgesses and a colonel of militia; moved to Tennessee in 1776; member of the State constitutional convention in 1796; upon the admission of Tennessee as a State into the Union was elected to the United States Senate and served from August 2, 1796, to March 3, 1797; was appointed his own successor, as there had been no election by the legislature, and served under this appointment from April 22, 1797, to September 26, 1797, when a successor was elected; again elected to the United States Senate as a Republican and served from March 4, 1799, to March 3, 1805; appointed judge of the first circuit in 1809; moved to Mississippi, and was elected to the Mississippi legislature in 1813; served under Gen. Andrew Jackson in the War of 1812; was appointed by President James Madison as Indian agent for the Chickasaw Nation in 1814; died in Columbus, Miss., on August 22, 1828 and interred in that city."
[Source:  Biographical Data of the United States Congress, Retrieved July 7, 2002 from http://bioguide.congress.gov/scripts/biodisplay.pl?index=C000572]
     "William Cocke studied law before moving to Washington County, Virginia, in 1769.  After serving in Dunmore's War, he went to Kentucky with the party that settled Boonesborough.  He returned to the Watauga settlement and participated in the Cherokee Campaign, but was accused of cowardice and suspended from office.  In 1777, however, he was sent to the Virginia Assembly.  During 1780 he was an ensign (or captain) and was in the battle at Kings Mountain.  He was also in the battles at Long Island Flats and Fort Thicketty.  When the state of Franklin was created, he was sent to Washington on its behalf.  Next, he was made brigadier-general in the militia of Tennessee and in 1796 was one of the state's first elected federal senators.  He was reelected in 1799.  In 1809 he was a circuit judge for Tennessee and was later a member of the state legislature.  In 1812 he moved to Columbus, Mississippi, and upon the outbreak of the War of 1812 he volunteered as a private.  Cocke was appointed Cherokee Indian Agent in 1814.  His son, John Ellis Cocke, married Sarah Stratton."
[Source:  Moss, Bobby Gilmer.  The Patriots at Kings Mountain.  Blacksburg, SC: Scotia-Hibernia Press, 1990, p. 50-51.]

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