Samuel Ruffin (1814 - 1885)

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Birthplace: Nash County, NC, USA
Death: Died in Louisburg, Franklin County, NC, USA
Managed by: Ailene Nechelle House
Last Updated:

About Samuel Ruffin

Samuel attended the University of North Carolina before moving to Alabama. By 1860 Samuel Ruffin had purchased 7,200 acres of land in the Pushmataha area of Choctaw County, AL. This land was south of Highway 10, across from Gilfield Church toward Riderwood and West of Cyril.

In 1850 he owned 86 slaves and real estate valued at $6,500. By 1860 there were 148 and real estate of $50,000 and personal property of $200,000, thus becoming the largest slave owner in the county. [Greenberry Chaney was Choctaw County's largest slave owner in 1850, but Ruffin owned the most slaves in 1860 after Chaney had died and his slaves split among all his children]

He remained unmarried until late in life, and spent his summers in the family home in North Carolina, and the winters at his plantation in Choctaw County or at his cabin at the fashionable resort of Bladon Springs. He often visited the Sydney Trotter Prince family who lived in Mount Sterling, but who later moved to Mobile. Mr. Ruffin stayed in Mobile with this family often as he traveled to his Choctaw County home.

During the Civil War, he equipped and sent to the field at his own expense the Choctaw Ruffin Dragoons, the first cavalry company from Alabama. This unit was so well dressed and drilled that it earned a high reputation under the command of Frank Young Gaines. The Company served in Gen. Wheeler's Division.

He was known as "The Soldier's Friend" and gave generously of his personal wealth "to the maintenance of the wives and children of confederate soldiers". There were regular collections of food made in those days, and Col Ruffin was a constant contributor to those in his own and other counties.

It is believed that the "Col." was an honorary title perhaps bestowed on him for his tremendous expense in outfitting the Ruffin Dragoons. By 1870 his real estate had dropped to only $20,000; and his personal fortune had fallen from $200,000 to $8,000. After the war, Ruffin sold much of his land around Riderwood to his former slaves.

In 1875 at the age of 61, Ruffin married a daughter of the distinguished Senator Haywood of North Carolina. The marriage ended ten years later with Ruffin's death. There were no children from this union.

His nephew, Samuel Ruffin (son of his brother, William Haywood, and wife Agnes Chadwick Ruffin) also lived in Choctaw County with his wife Blanche Forster. Baptism records indicate the family worshipped in Calvary Church, Episcopal.

In January of 1885, Col. Ruffin, on his way to his plantation in Choctaw County, was stricken with a heart attack at the home of his friend, Sydney Trotter Prince in Toulminville. The Princes immediately telegraphed Mrs. Ruffin, who arrived in time to be at the bedsie of her dying husband. She accompanied the body to North Carolina for burial in Louisburg, Franklin County, in the Ruffin family Cemetery. Ruffin's entire estate was left to his wife, who sold most of it.

There is a small mountain stone and concrete marker on the Choctaw County courthouse lawn, commemorating the day the Ruffin Dragoons, splendid in their bright uniforms, mounted on their spirited hourse, left to fight in the War.

Source:: [http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~jinks/samhjg7.htm]

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Source:: http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~jinks/samhjg7.htm

Samuel Ruffin Family Born: 14 June 1814 Greene Co, NC Died: 7 Jan 1885 Choctaw Co AL Parents: Henry John Gray and Mary Tartt Married:24 Nov 1875 Ann Haywood (daughter of US Sen. William H. Haywood

Samuel attended the University of North Carolina before moving to Alabama. By 1860 Samuel Ruffin had purchased 7,200 acres of land in the Pushmataha area of Choctaw County, AL. This land was south of Highway 10, across from Gilfield Church toward Riderwood and West of Cyril. In 1850 he owned 86 slaves and real estate valued at $6,500. By 1860 there were 148 and real estate of $50,000 and personal property of $200,000, thus becoming the largest slave owner in the county. [Greenberry Chaney was Choctaw County's largest slave owner in 1850, but Ruffin owned the most slaves in 1860 after Chaney had died and his slaves split among all his children]

He remained unmarried until late in life, and spent his summers in the family home in North Carolina, and the winters at his plantation in Choctaw County or at his cabin at the fashionable resort of Bladon Springs. He often visted the Sydney Trotter Prince family who lived in Mount Sterling, but who later moved to Mobile. Mr. Ruffin stayed in Mobile with this family often as he traveled to his Choctaw County home.

During the Civil War, he equipped and sent to the field at his own expense the Choctaw Ruffin Dragoons, the first cavalry company from Alabama. This unit was so well dressed and drilled that it earned a high reputation under the command of Frank Young Gaines. The Company served in Gen. Wheeler's Division. He was known as "The Soldier's Friend" and gave generously of his personal wealth "to the maintenance of the wives and children of confederate soldiers". There were regular collections of food made in those days, and Col Ruffin was a constant contribuotor to those in his own and other counties.

It is believed that the "Col." was an honorary title perhpas bestowed on him for his tremendous expense in outfitting the Ruffin Dragoons. By 1870 his real estate had dropped to only $20,000; and his personal fortune had fallen from $200,000 to $8,000. After the war, Ruffin sold much of his land around Riderwood to his former slaves.

In 1875 at the age of 61, Ruffin married a daughter of the distinguished Senator Haywood of North Carolina. The marriage ended ten years later with Ruffin's death. There were no children from this union. His nephew, Samuel Ruffin (son of his brother, William Haywood, and wife Agnes Chadwick Ruffin) also lived in Choctaw County with his wife Blanche Forster. Baptism records indicate the family worshipped in Calvary Church, Episcopal.

In January of 1885, Col. Ruffin, on his way to his plantation in Choctaw County, was stricken with a heart attack at the home of his friend, Sydney Trotter Prince in Toulminville. The Princes immediately telegraphed Mrs. Ruffin, who arrived in time to be at the bedsie of her dying husband. She accompanied the body to North Carolina for burial in Louisburg, Franklin County, in the Ruffin family Cemetery. Ruffin's entire estate was left to his wife, who sold most of it.

There is a small mountain stone and concrete marker on the Choctaw County courthouse lawn, commemorating the day the Ruffin Dragoons, splendid in their bright uniforms, mounted on their spirited hourse, left to fight in the War.

Sources: 1850, 1860, 1870 Choctaw County Census1850, 1860 Slave census, Choctaw County Marriages, White, Book 1, page 286

Calvary Church (Episcopal) Church Record Book Choctaw Advocate 27 Dec 1979; 24 Apr 1986 Choctaw Herald 15 Jan 1885 (obituary)

Birmingham Age - undated article/Bladon Springs DuBose - History of Mount SterlingMary Jane Pickens Skinner paper on Samuel Ruffin presented to Choctaw Co. Historical Society 1986.

Used with permission from: Choctaw Names and Notes: Alabama's Choctaw County by Ann Harwell Gay. (1993).Census Records for Choctaw County

We need MORE records for this county and name. Rehoboth Baptist Church Members

Slaves of Samuel Ruffin Compiled by Ann H. Gay, Butler, AL 36904 from the original church record book. 1853 & 1854 u= unknown dates

Abraney/Alvany? Albinia Alfred Aline (u) Arabella Beckie - 1864 Ben - 1864 Betsy - 1864 Bill Calvin - 1864 Charity Cherry Clary Creacy (u) Cready Edmund - 1864 Eliza - 1864 Ellen Esther Old Esther Fanny George Haywood Harriet Harry Henry Henderson - 1864 Hilliard (u) Isaac - 1864 Isabella (u) Jack Jacob - 1864 Jinny (u) Job John Julia - 1864 Lee Lettis Lewis - 1864 Lucinda Lucy Mandy, Big Mandy, Little Maria (u) Marsa Martha Mary - 1864 Moses Oliver - 1864 Peter Perry Pheriby? Polly (u) Rachel - 1864 Richard RiddickReddick? Rozena Sally Sarah - 1864 Spencer - 1864 Tom Tracy - 1864 Westley Wiley William - 1864 Young

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Samuel Ruffin's Timeline

1814
1814
Nash County, NC, USA
1835
1835
Age 21
VA, USA
1885
January 10, 1885
Age 71
Louisburg, Franklin County, NC, USA
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