For a brief historical sketch of each farm, click on the farm name.
J. M. Bailiff Farm
Robert and Nettie Page Simpson Farm
The following map is for a general geographical understanding. It does not provide the specific locations of the farms because of privacy reasons.
Map Courtesy of Carole Swann, Tennessee Department of Agriculture
Billy Joe Corley
Nathanial and Mary Holland Corley established the
Corley family farm in 1815 when they acquired 445 acres of land along Smith
Fork Creek in
The second generation owners of the farm, John and Elizabeth Upton Corley, owned ten slaves until the blacks were emancipated at the conclusion of the Civil War. The Corleys were the parents of six children and their farm products were the same as the founders.
Their son James acquired control of the farm in 1894 and remodeled his father’s log house “into a colonial type house” that remains on the property. In 1959, Billy Joe Corley, the farm’s current owner, acquired 150 acres of the family land. He has since obtained 286 additional acres of the original Corley farmstead. Billy Joe wed Ruth Hancock and they raised four children.
J. M. Bailiff Farm
Kevin L. Bandy
In the decade following the end of the Civil War, many farms were established as people began to resume a normal life and rebuild their lives and make the land productive again. Confederate veteran and former prisoner of war, James Monroe Bailiff established a 52 ½ acre farm about five miles from Dowelltown in 1875. Bailiff was in Company A, Allison’s Battalion of Confederate Calvary. He was wounded at the Battle of Chickamauga in September of 1863 and later captured by Union troops. In the Spring of 1864, he was released. Family history indicates that the Bailiff family owned slaves prior to the war, but they were freed in 1854 by James Monroe’s grandfather.
James and his wife, Eliza Jane
Foster, had nine children. The family
raised wheat, corn, cattle, horses, mules, oxen, pigs, chickens and kept bees.
James also served as a deacon of the
In 1925, James’s and Eliza’s son, Leslie Dee Bailiff became the second generation to own the farm. Married to Amanda Tramel, the couple had four children. Their names were Charlie, Talphia, Mairene and Louelle. During his ownership, the farm produced corn, tobacco, cattle, horses, mules and chickens.
The third generation to own the
property was Charlie Bailiff, who acquired the farm in 1950. During World War
II, Charlie served in the 365th Field Artillery and drove an
ammunition truck carrying 105mm shells to the front line. He served in
In 2004, the great, great grandson of James and Eliza, Kevin Bandy, acquired the farm. He and his wife Brenda have two sons, Zachary and Dawson. The farm house built in 1923 by Leslie Dee Bailiff continues to be used by the family. Today, timber is the primary product of this Reconstruction-era farm.Photo: J. M. Bailiff, the founder of the farm and his family.
Jimmy G. Oakley
Hilda A. Oakley
Oakley Farm was founded in 1875 by William Monroe Oakley and his wife Mary Reasonover Oakley. The farm was composed of 282 acres. The couple had six children. Their sons, Bove and Joseph Oakley, were the next owners of the land. Their wives, Mary Ayers and Mary Smith also both lived on the land.
In 1911, Joesph and Mary Oakley deeded their land to Bove. Upon his death, the land was divided among the heirs and Wallace, the youngest son acquired the farmhouse and 30 acres in 1917. Wallace married Grace Allen and they lived on the land and raised corn, tobacco, hay and milking cows. Wallace and Grace Allen had four children and their son, Jimmy Oakley became the next generation to own the property.
Today, Jimmy Oakley and his wife Hilda, own and manage the 30 acre farm that produces hay and cattle. A primary family house, built in 1817, still stands on the land today.
Photo: The farmhouse on the Oakley Century Farm.
Robert and Nettie Page Simpson Farm
Thomas E. Simpson
Robert B. Simpson
James E. Simpson
In 1816, Phares Laurence founded a 56 acre farm in what was then Smith County, but is today in DeKalb County. Phares was as a private in the war of 1812 and from November of 1814 to May 1815 he served in Roulston’s west Tennessee Militia in Captain Edward Robinson’s company, 3rd regiment Tennessee Militia infantry. He and his wife Katherine had seven children. Their names were Susan, Artimesa, James H., Elizabeth, Helen, Christina and William Carol. The family raised corn, hay, pigs and cattle. A land grant of 50 acres was awarded to Pharis and a copy of the document signed in 1828 by then Gov. Sam Houston was submitted with the application.
The second generation of the family to own the farm was William Carol Laurence. William, who remained a bachelor, acquired the property in 1853 and 1854 and continued to operate the farm much as his parents had done. In 1909, Rowena Simpson, the granddaughter of the founder obtained the farm.
In 1921, the great grandson of the founder, Robert Simpson and his wife Nettie Mai Page Simpson became the owners of the farm. Along with their two children, James E. and Gladys, the Simpsons raised corn, hay, tobacco, wheat, pigs, cattle and chickens. James and Gladys inherited the property in 1979. James married Elizabeth Banks and they had two children, Thomas and Robert. Gladys never married. Cattle, timber and hay were the primary products
In 2008, the great, great, great grandsons of the founder, Thomas E. Simpson and Robert B. Simpson joined their father James E. Simpson and their aunt Gladys Simpson as current owners of the farm. A farmhouse, barn, tobacco barn, and smoke house are part of the historic farmstead which traces its origins to a veteran of the War of 1812.
Photo: A barn on the Robert and Nettie Page Simpson Farm.
The history of the Rose Farm, as it has grown from a homestead of 131 acres to a modern farm of 550 acres, reflects continued agricultural progress from the generation to generation. Three miles northeast of Temperance Hall, the farm dates to 1874. Its founders were Dr. E. T. Rose and his wife Hester, who owned 131 acres of land. The Roses and their six children grew grain and raised beef cattle, sheep and swine.
Upon his father’s death in 1899, Ira B. Rose inherited the entire farm. Ira and his wife Electa Reynolds expanded the farm into one of the community’s finest. The family made “tremendous progress” in agricultural methods and purchased the farm’s first tractor. They also acquired an additional 150 acres of land. Ira, however, was more than an accomplished farmer. A member of the DeKalb County Court, he served as a director of the Temperance Hall Bank, as a member of the county courthouse building committee and as a director of the local telephone company.
Ira and Electa Rose were the parents of five children and the farm next passed into the hands of their son Toy. In 1948, Toy’s wife Edith Rose acquired the property. The Rose family currently farms approximately 550 acres and specializes in three popular agricultural products of the late twentieth century: tobacco, beef cattle and dairy products. Despite the modern farming techniques employed at the farm today, the Rose place retains many of its original buildings, including the family dwelling, smokehouse and barn.
In 1927, James’s daughter, Ella Stevens Nixon and her son, James Nixon, became the next generation to own the farm. During their ownership, the farm cultivated wheat, corn, hay and cattle. James Nixon owned the farm until 1961 and at that time the ownership was transferred to his daughter, Jimmie Nell Nixon Manning and her husband Fred Wilson Manning.
In 2004, the great great grandson of the founder, Terry Manning became the owner of the land. Today, the farm continues the farming traditions by growing hay and supporting cattle.