Saturday, March 21, 2009

The Dallam Family - Public Servants

Home of James L. Dallam in Smithland, Livingston County, Kentucky.

Public service appears to have been the motto of the Dallam family. The progenitor of the family in western Kentucky was Nathan Smith Dallam, who left Harford County, Maryland about 1804 and settled in Clark County, Kentucky, where he married Sarah Hicks 14 October 1807. The following year he moved to Christian County, where he served as clerk of court and was also elected to the state legislature.

The year 1827 was an eventful one for Nathan S. Dallam, who was then living in Caldwell County, Kentucky. In October, he was chosen clerk of court, which included both county court as well as circuit court, and the following month he purchased land where the family was residing on the road leading from Princeton to Eddyville. Dallam continued to serve as clerk of court until 17 April 1837, when he tendered his resignation due to the state of his health and recommended his son, Charles B. Dallam, as his successor.

Charles B. Dallam was not the last of the family to serve as clerk of court. In 1833, James L. Dallam, the oldest son of Nathan S. Dallam, was appointed clerk of court in adjoining Livingston County and he chose another brother, Francis Henry Dallam, as his deputy. Ten years later, James L. Dallam chose still another brother, Edward Winston Dallam, as deputy clerk. James L. Dallam was clerk of court during the removal of the Livingston County seat of justice from Salem to Smithland in 1842.

Nathan S. and Sarah Dallam had ten children, six of whom were sons and almost all of them were involved in public service. This family also produced prominent business men, including brothers Francis Henry Dallam, a lawyer who moved to Henderson, Kentucky; William J. Dallam, who was in the shoe and boot business in several Kentucky counties before settling in Evansville, Indiana and Lucien Clay Dallam, a banker who settled in Henderson, Kentucky. If any family served the public in western Kentucky, it was the Dallam family.

There will be more articles on the Dallam family in future blogs.

Copyright on text and photographs
by Brenda Joyce Jerome, CG
Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog

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