From Heather Cecil of Shelby County, Kentucky Historical Society:
My research is complete on the powder horn owned by Isaac Collier, and I wanted to share with the Collier family. Below is the article I wrote for the Shelby County, KY Historical Society Facebook group, with additional photos. I hope you enjoy it!
The story goes that Isaac Collier was a member of the English Navy. When he left to join the Continental Army during the American Revolution, he gave his elaborately hand-carved, scrimshaw powder horn to his brother, Michael Collier. Michael, a Blacksmith, was one of the first citizens of Shelbyville, Kentucky. Upon Isaac’s departure, he requested that Michael name a son after him, and to pass this gift on to his descendants. Michael indeed named a son after his brother, and the younger Isaac went on to play an instrumental role in the founding of one of the oldest church congregations in Shelby County. Despite the fact that Isaac was not a Baptist at the time, he donated an acre of land on Fox Run Road to the erection of a church there. He later converted, and on June 16th, 1801, Burk’s Branch Baptist Church was organized. A humble log structure was erected there, chinked with mud and stones. The younger Isaac passed away in 1835 and is buried in the church cemetery. The powder horn passed to his son Isaac Fleming Collier, who built a fine home at the southeast corner of Burk’s Branch and Fox Run Roads. While the house has been lost to time, Walter H. Kiser published a sketch of it in the Louisville Times in 1938. When Isaac Fleming Collier had a son, he also named him Isaac, and the powder horn continued to pass from generation to generation, until it was gifted to the Shelby County Historical Society by Charles S. Moore, Sr., to share this piece of our history with future generations of Shelby County.
Cuthbert Collier, the sixth child of Vines and Sarah Elizabeth Williamson Collier, was born in Brunswick County, Virginia. His tombstone has the year of his birth as 1772, so he would have been approaching his teenage years when his family settled in Georgia in 1785. Researchers tell us he married Nancy Dickee in 1803 in Oglethorpe County, Georgia. By 1816, Nancy apparently had died and Cuthbert married Rebecca Franklin. In 1824, Cuthbert sold the Vines Collier plantation to Peachy R. Gilmer, brother of Governor George Gilmer. In 1830, Cuthbert, Rebecca, and their family appear in the census for Monroe County. By that time, at least three of Cuthbert’s siblings, Robert, Isaac, and Williamson, had settled in nearby Upson County.
From “The History of Monroe County, Georgia”, page 65, we see,
“Cuthbert Collier, a Virginian, who was here to strike his claim when Monroe County implemented the land lottery system, later added to his holdings. By the time plans to build the railroad were being formulated, he was in a bargaining position. He traded the lengthy right-of-way for the consideration of five dollars and a train station guaranteeing passenger service.”
Collier’s Station, not only allowed passenger service, but gave Cuthbert ready access to ship his goods and receive delivery of needed items. This is a portion of an 1855 railroad map showing Collier’s Station.
A topographic map of the area shows that Cuthbert’s choice of property, if not by design, was extremely fortuitous. His plantation spanned across a divide separating two major drainages. For the railroad to have taken any other route than through his plantation would have been difficult and expensive.
Cuthbert Collier died in 1845 and Rebecca in 1872. The two are buried in the cemetery by the railroad tracks on what was once their plantation.
The Collier name remains prominent in the area. The cemetery is just off Big Collier Road and southwest of Little Collier Road.
In 2012, subdivision lots were being offered, marketed as “Collier Place”.
Cuthbert’s Collier Station today still has an active siding with signs marking No(rth) Collier and So(uth) Collier. It can be seen on the road between Barnesville and Forsythe.
A large house house on Collier Road and adjacent to the railroad is reported to have been the home of Cuthbert and Rebecca Collier.
By 1918, at the age of only a couple of years past 50, J C Collier had already made two fortunes of a lifetime – the first as a dry goods merchant (see Jan. 2, 2017 post), the second in agriculture (see Sept. 17, 2016 post). He was about to make his third in textile manufacturing (see Feb. 24, 2017 post). Oxford Knitting Mills (started by J C and his father, I C Collier, in 1898) was doing well. D C Collier, J C’s son, had joined the company in 1911, having completed a degree in textile engineering at Georgia Tech. Financially, the future looked very promising.
The two decided to have homes that were appropriate for their wealth and position in the community. For their new residences, J C and D C bought adjacent properties on Thomaston Street in Barnesville, Georgia. Their planning was greeted with some excitement in the town as evidenced by this article from the local newspaper.
When constructed, the two homes shared a common carriage house or garage of the same construction as the houses. The homes were celebrated in two postcards of the time, one black & white and the other in color.
J C Collier House in the Right Foreground, D C Collier Home on the Left, Carriage House Between the Two.
When J C Collier was elected State Senator in 1924, a picture of his home appeared in the Atlanta Journal.
D C Collier was a detailed manager. Here is a spreadsheet he created showing the various categories and the cost to build his home. The total cost in 1919 was $26,538.00.
D C Collier’s home was electric throughout. There was an intercom inside at the front door where one could page each room in the house. There was a music room and a French room (where the children were taught French). The upstairs bath had what I will describe as a full length, wrap-around shower. The house had a built-in, in-the-wall vacuum system, of which D C was very proud. One family anecdote was that the system never worked, but no one told D C. When he left, the housekeeper got out the broom and dustpan.
A small alley ran perpendicular to Thomaston Street and beside J C’s property. Called “Collier Alley”, it was marked until recently by a concrete marker. I observed this summer the marker had been replaced by a typical street sign.
Here are some more pictures of the two homes.
Here is a great portrait of the Collier family taken next to the home of J C Collier (seated).
Also see the June 10, 2016 post about the homes being featured in the Georgia Trust Barnesville Expedition Tour of Homes.
Elaine Collier Neal has provided CHF documents showing the locations of the Charles Collier and Thomas Vines plantations near Yorktown, Virginia.
The first of our line of Colliers in America was Isaak Collyer who came to Virginia sometime in the mid-1600s. The line of descent from Isaak Collyer to Vines Collier is as follows:
Isaak Collyer > Charles Collier > Isaac Collier > Vines Collier
Isaac Collier married Ann Vines, the daughter of Thomas Vines. Vines Collier was given his mother’s maiden name, which was a typical convention of the time.
The following is a property map of the Yorktown, Virginia area in 1704, showing the plantation of Charles Collier (paternal grandfather of Vines Collier) and the plantation of Thomas Vines (maternal grandfather of Vines Collier).