John PERRY 1 2
- Born: June 18, 1769, Bute Co No Carolina 1
- Marriage: Ruth STRICKLAND Abt 1797, North Carolina 1
- Died: December 12, 1859, Russel Co, Alabama at age 90 1
- Buried: Salem, Alabama 1
Some information from WFT CD. Names of wives of children from will of John Perry of Russell county, Alabama - probated January Term 1860. Also some information from book by Benjamin Pery (Perry?). Some marriages from marriage records of Franklin county, North Carolina.
From book on Perrys by Carolyn Fleetwood and Joan Fortune:
John Perry was nicknamed "Speck" because he had freckles. He, like Burrell, sowed quite a few wild oats, and it was he who, it was said, drank a rival under the table and by doing so won the hand of Ruth. Mr. Strickland, Ruth's father, had quite alot of cider on hand, and proposed a contest between John and his rival as to who could drink the most without becoming tipsy. The winner was to be able to walk up the stairs without staggering, which John managed to do, and the rival could have probably done so too, but decided to take a stroll first. The longer he walked, the sleepier he became, and sat down by a fence and fell asleep. The next morning the rival was observed making his way toward the house, and was apparently the worse for wear. John said, "Now, Miss Ruth, would you, or any other young lady, marry such a thing as that?" Her answer was an emphatic no. It leaked out that John was able to hold his drinks so well, as the contest was held on the balcony, that the contents of some glasses were thrown undetected into the yard below, but it has been said, "All is fair in love and war".
All of John's children were born in Jasper county, Georgia before he moved to Muscogee county, Georgia in 1828. In 1834 he moved to Russell county, Alabama. Problems with the Indians became so bad John sent his wife and children to safety, but he remained, locking everything up at night and sleeping in the woods. Finally, some friends from Georgia prevailed on John to move too, which he did under protest, saying it was the first cowardly act of his life. However, John, now sixty-six, remained away for only a few days and awaited the return of his family and neighbors.
John claimed he inherited his personal courage from his mother, and narrated the following tale to prove it. Jeremiah was a Whig, living in the midst of Tories. One day, three went to his house to rob him, one remaining outside to hold the horses. Jeremiah was attacked, and his wife, fearing he was to be killed as well as robbed, pushed him into another room, and proceeded to toss the would-be robbers out the window. They hit the hard ground with such force they were injured or stunned and easily captured. The robber waiting outside did get away with two of Jeremiah's fine horses though, and Jeremiah himself didn't come out of the set too unscathed. His wife, when she pushed him into another room, had slammed the door on his fingers.
John was eccentric, having a beautiful polished coffin made several years before he died, and this he kept under his bed. He stored his tobacco in it, saying it was the safest place to put it, as no Negro was going to open a coffin to steal tobacco.
Uncle Speck, as he came to be called, was buried with the square and compass symbol of the Masonic Fraternity resting on his chest. He had requested before he died that he wanted nothing black around his grave site, as he had never commited a black deed. He is in the Perry burying ground, five miles south of Salem, Alabama and there is no monument, but his and Ruth's graves are surrounded by a roofed picket.
Events in his life were:
• Nickname: Speck.
John married Ruth STRICKLAND, daughter of Matthew STRICKLAND and Mary PERRY, about 1797 in North Carolina.1 (Ruth STRICKLAND was born September 1779 in North Carolina 1 and died September 6, 1846 in North Carolina 1.)