"Michael McCarty born 1732, died 1854--age 122 years."
So reads an entry in the Bible of James McCarty, great-grandson of this Michael. James copied the entry from the bible of his father, Tillman McCarty, son of Philip McCarty, son of Michael.
This Michael McCarty was born in Edgefield, South Carolina. In the 1810 census of Edgefield, South Carolina, the home of these McCartys, there are at least three Michael McCartys. In the Revolutionary history of this section of South Carolina, four Michaels are found. In 1820 two Michaels still remain in Edgefield, but in 1830 no Michael appears in the census at all.
Mrs. Eula McCarty Lansford of Crockett, Texas, says, "My father told me that his great-grandfather Michael lived in Jefferson County, Alabama, and that he once owned the land on which Birmingham now stands and leagues and leagues besides." Her father, Michael, was brother of James and son of Tillman.
A Michael McCarty of Jefferson County, Alabama, lived in Short Creek and owned land there, but diligent search has not shown that he was a large land owner in Jefferson County. On July 18, 1834, Michael McCarty sold land to Amos Lea for $300. It is listed in Book 5, p. 153 as N.E. 1/4, Sec. 20, Township 17, Range 5, west. John B. Ayers is witness. The deed was signed "Michael McCarty" and "Nancy McCarty."
In Book 6, p. 248, March 26, 1838, Michael borrows $56. from Robert Waldrop to be paid on March 1, 1839. Michael, as security, uses a 10 year old Negro boy, Loose. This agreement is witnessed by Nehemiah Taylor, Amos Lea, and A. C. Waldrop.
Michael had five sons and at least three daughters, if he is the father of Philip McCarty of Dale County, Alabama, and of Penelope McCarty Musgrove of Blount County, Alabama. Mike McCarty, Jr., was surely his son, and Henry, James, and Benager were three other sons living near him in Jefferson County. If Michael was the father of Penelope Musgrove, he was also the father of two other daughters (given names unknown) one of whom married a Philip Slaughter and the other a Talliferro, probably Philip.
Michael and Nancy gave their consent for the marriage of Henry McCarty and Elvira Gilley December 9, 1838. Descendants and friends of Benager and James McCarty of Jefferson County, Alabama, testify that James and Benager were Michael's sons and half brothers of Henry.
In a letter from Mr. John Trice of Quinton, Alabama, 1955, concerning Michael McCarty of Jefferson County he says:
"I am a great-grandson of Michael McCarty. My mother was Mary Ann McCarty, daughter of Benager McCarty, son of Michael, the Revolutionary soldier. I heard my Uncle Philip Wilson McCarty speak of him . . . . I do not know whether Michael ever lived in what is now Birmingham. Elyton was the county seat in Michael 's time . . . .I have heard from my mother and others that the McCartys came to Dale County from Edgefield, South Carolina. My mother had an Uncle Henry who was a half brother to her father Benager."
In a letter from Mr. Thomas Salter Quinton, Alabama, on January 18, 1956, he had this to say about the Jefferson County McCartys:
"My fore parents came to Alabama with the McCartys in the period 1810-1820. My grandfather lived with the McCartys until he grew up and married. During that time James McCarty moved to Dale County, made a crop, sold it in the field, and moved back to this location. My grandfather, Silas Nathaniel Salter, drove a team of oxen to Dale County, spent the period of time they stayed there and then drove back here......I own the land that James McCarty entered in 1832 or 1833.
"Mahala McCarty, daughter of James, married Justice Berry, and they had one son, James. He told me that old Michael rode horseback from Short Creek to Brake Bend, about ten miles, in 1850, took sick and died at their house, age 105. I would guess that he is buried in the Brake Bend, as there is an old cemetery there but there is no one living now that would know. Michael had a son Henry. His wife, Elizabeth Elvira, lived with my family more than a year when I was a boy. She said her uncle toted her on his back from South Carolina to Alabama. Aunt Elvira, as we called her, died in the Walker County Alms House when she was near 100 years old. Her husband was a teacher. They had only one child, Owen Alcy. (Alsa)."
Mr. Trice also stated that James Justice, son of Mahala, said Michael died at the home of his grandparents, Rebecca and James McCarty.
Judge Philip McCarty, judge of an inferior court in Macon County, Georgia, from 1840 to 1842, moved to Dale County in 1842 where he remained until his death in 1879. His father and at least one brother, "a red-haired old man who could put his hands on his horse's back and vault into the saddle" lived in Alabama, according to Mrs. Pet Maynard, one of Philip's granddaughters. He visited Philip many times in Dale County, riding horse back from his home to Dale.
Horse back riders figure prominently in the traditional history of the McCarty family. Michael, father of Philip, is said to have ridden horse back from South Carolina to Alabama. Philip rode from Georgia to Alabama on horse back; and Michael, age 106 rode to his death in Short Creek.
Though the connection is not too plain, three things indicate that this Michael was the father of Philip McCarty. First, Michael lived in Jefferson County, and so did Philip's father Michael. Second, James and Benegar were Michael's sons, and there are strong indications that these two sons were Philip's brothers. James moved to Dale County, and Philip was already living there. Then the family names of these three McCartys and of Henry, too, are similar. Philip had a son Alsa, and so did Henry. Philip's second wife's name was Mahala, and James had a daughter Mahala. Alsa, Philip's son, had a daughter Catherine, and so did James. Philip had a sister Penelope and both James and Benager had daughters named Penelope. Philip had a daughter Mary Ann, a son James, Michael, and son Wilson, a son Philip and so did Benager.
In 1850, the Jefferson County McCartys appeared in the census as shown:
On May 28, 1828, George Nunn and Henry Tate made affidavit that Mike sold to James McCarty a 15 year old Negro girl, Pat, for $400 with the agreement that Mike was to keep her during his life time. This transaction is recorded in Deed Book 3, p. 161, Jefferson County, Alabama, and also in Edgefield County, South Carolina, July 25, 1821.
These same witnesses make affidavit that the bill of sale which Mike, Sr. gave to Mike, Jr., for a 14 year old Negro boy, Dick, was burned by accident. This affidavit was registered in Book 3, p. 162 on May 17, 1828 in Jefferson County. Michael was to keep the boy during his own life time.
From these transactions one might judge that Michael McCarty had little money, though he might have had "leagues and leagues" of land.
One May 15, 1835, when he applied for a pension for Revolutionary service in South Carolina, Michael said he moved to Alabama in 1827. In the application he said he entered service as a private in South Carolina under Captain Michael Watson and Lieutenant James Butler of Col. Stark's Regiment and in 1777 under General Williamson. He served two years and six months helping protect Augusta, Georgia, and in skirmishes with the British and Tories. His pension number was S11049.
Born in Edgefield District February 16, 1754, he lived there until the autumn of 1827 when he moved to Jefferson County, Alabama. He was named in the Indent Book as having received pay for his Revolution service as below:
For 285 days duty from November 1780 to August 30, 1781 F
For 330 days duty from 11 September, 1781 to 8 Sept, 1782 165
He had previously served three months in Wilson's Field in Edgefield District. His pension was issued July 27, 1840 by C. C. Clay, Huntsville, Alabama. He died March, 1850. His death certificate gives the cause of his death as "old age," and his age as 106 years. The Jefferson census of 1840 lists Michael as at least 90 years old.
Will of Nathan Boddie, Sr.