Clemmy Joseph Place

Location: Powell River and Roaring Fork of Powell River, 
about 15 miles west of Courthouse.

Date: About 1830.

Acreage: 501 to 911

Origin of Ownership: Joseph at formation of County, now Blackwood Coal Company.

Type of Building: Hewn log, exact location not established. Not standing.

Historical Interest: Family tradition tells us that Clemmy Joseph was born in Austria, but we have no recorded proof to support this. He was living on Powell River at the place now known as Kelly View before the organization of Wise County (1856) and it is thought he settled there about 1830. He was married to Elizabeth Hilton, a sister to Elisha and Elijah Hilton who were also early settlers on the upper Powell River. At the time Wise County was formed and for years thereafter, the records lend proof to the tradition that he was the
wealthiest man in the county. There was no banks or trust companies at that time, and Joseph, ti seems, was a money lender, accepting as security liens and deeds of trust on lands and other property. One record shows that he loaned a man money once and that he accepted a deed of trust on a whiskey still and outfit as security.
     At the braking out of the Civil War, Joseph and his sons and son-in-laws were Union men. This brought down upon their heads the scorn of their neighbors. One day a band of home guards visited the Joseph home and demanded his money. Neither he nor his wife would tell where it was hid. The men finally shot
Clemmy and hanged "Aunt Betty" to a gate post. A small boy who was living with them begged for their lives and finally persuaded Clemmy to tell where $300 was hidden. They found, cut down Mrs. Joseph and rode away. The bulk of their cash was hidden in the graveyard nearby their house. They at one time had several slaves, and in 1869 when Joseph moved away to Perry Co., KY the records show that he owned 911 acres of real estate.

Sources of Information: James T. Adams and Court Records.


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