Hardin Valley History, Macy's Own Stories

Stories recounted by Macy Mack Gallaher (1889-1985)

Macy was an incredible storyteller.  He remembered Tennessee history stories that had been told by his father--even his grandfather and grandmother, who were born as early as the 1820's--and he knew their first-hand Civil War and early Tenessee experiences. 

His stories were so interesting that we started recording him on our little portable tape recorder in the 1970's and early 1980's. From those I put together a family CD (that's also registered and stored in the Library of Congress);"Tales of Tennessee" recordings were made around the dinner table, with Macy Mack Gallaher telling us the old stories he'd heard from his daddy and others. Over the years, as I dug through old records in Nashville and Knoxville, I discovered that almost all of Macy's stories had multiple documentation of his facts. (These MP3 stories may not work on mobile devices!)

Story 1:  The Civil War on Buttermilk Road: Stolen Chickens 

Story of his daddy (John Montgomery Gallaher) encountering Confederate soldiers in the area of Campbell Station Road and Buttermilk (Hardin Valley) Road.


Story 2:  What My Daddy Said: Seven Brothers 

He tells of the Gallahers coming from Pennsylvania, how Joseph Gallaher (Macy's great-grandfather) built the "Bussell house" which was down on Gallaher Ferry Road, and "Uncle Davey" (his grandfather, David Gallaher) built the old log cabin.


Story 3:  The Earliest Settlers in Hardin Valley

Recounts the early deed, a land grant to Col. Hardin after the Revolutionary War, and how the early Hardins and Gallahers contended with Indians.  


Story 4: Taylor Cousins in the Civil War

The story of two Taylor brothers who fought on opposite sides of the Civil War; Macy was close to his grandmother(Betsy Keith Taylor Doughty) and remembered some of her thoughts about the conflict that took away two of her sons.


Story 5:  Wild John Gallaher

The family was always a little embarrassed when Macy began on this story--nobody wants to be related to a desperado--and they always tried to divert him from this one.  But Macy loved this story and told it nevertheless.  I've never figured out exactly who "Wild John" was, but he seems to be related to Uncle Alec Gallaher, and the story seems to have happened in some county other than Knox.

17 wildjohn.mp3

Story 6:  Col. Doughty: Maryville College and Divorce in the Family

Grandfather James Doughty was first married to Sarah Martin of Blount County. After she died, he married Macy's grandmother, widow Betsy Keith Taylor.  Col. Doughty sent all his step-children and their daugther Parallee to Maryville college.  Despite that, the Taylor-Doughty marriage ended in divorce because Col. Doughty was "never much of a financier." A letter passed on to me written by one of Betsy's Taylor boys echoes this perception, that Doughty was a good man but not especially good at finances.


Story 7:  Macy's Family

Macy enumerates his siblings, his parents marriage in the late 1870's, and how his daddy accumulated the 500 acres of farmland that Macy took over after his father died.

09 Family.mp3

Copyright 1978 by Suzanne Haley.  For further information, email clinchrivergallahers@gmail.com

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