Mitchell County Today
I was born here in the Hawk Community up Cane Creek in May of 1943, smack in the middle of WWII. I was named Jack after my father Jack David English who was born in 1914. He married Edith Pitman in 1936 (my mother) and after they divorced in the 50's, he married Bobbi Jean Hise.
His father was Milt English born in 1891. Milt married Zula Buchanan. Milt's father was David J. English born in 1859. David married Jane Sparks.
David's father was David Jackson English who was born in 1818 on the English plantation named Sunnalee, located in Ashford above North Cove in present McDowell County. He went by "Jack" and he married Elizabeth Osborn.
Jack was one of the men chosen to take the Cherokee to Oklahoma on that horrific "Trail of Tears" that we should all be embarrassed about. He and his brothers, Milt, Sam and James all joined the Confederacy and were Democrats. But when James, the youngest brother was killed in battle at Drury's Bluff, Virginia in 1864, they re-evaluated their stance and joined Mr. Lincoln's party.
Jack was the son of Henry English born 1773 in Cumberland County, Pa. Henry was first married to Martha Oaks and had sons named William b.1799 in Elizabethton, Tn. Daniel b.1800 there then Gabriel in 1806 and Henry Jr. b.1809.
Henry later married Elizabeth Brown with children Rachel b.1815, David Jackson b.1818, John Milton b.1820, Samuel b.1823 and James b.1826. Henry died in 1857 and is buried on his plantation of about 500 acres. Descendants of Gabriel still own it and live there. I visit them fairly often.
Henry English was the son of Robert English. Robert married Sara Jane Crooks in either Ireland or Pennsylvania. I have spent many years trying to get a lead on Robert but have found little in the way of substance.
In 1790 he and his son Henry were witnesses at the death of Michael Hyder, the legendary German immigrant who settled in East Tennessee, when it was still North Carolina. When Tennessee became a state in 1796, Robert bought Lot 63 in the new town of Elizabethton. Also, Robert's daughter Rosanna English married Michael Hyder's son John. Rosanna was born in 1766. Also, Samuel English was a son of Robert, born about 1770.
There may have been children other than Henry, Samuel and Rosanna born to Robert and Sarah. One story has it that Robert had seven sons who settled in seven different states. Henry came to North Carolina and that is the only concrete fact that I have uncovered.
While I have been unable to retrieve the early writs of Parliament, authored by Sir John le Englisshe in 1013, it serves to show that even a thousand years ago, the family was prominent and "men of property and rank", as the English historians put it.
Jack L English, December 2008