Matthew NELSON (1778-1852)
HOUSE, 10th General Assembly, 1813-14; representing Roane County; party lines not drawn at this time; a Whig later. Born in Rockbridge County, Va., Oct. 17, 1778; son of John and Jane (ROBINSON) NELSON. Attended school three months; taught by a maiden aunt. Married Aug. 20, 1803, to Martha CANNON; children--Lawrence, Caroline, Sidney C., Eliza, Matthew Jr., John D., and William Cannon. Worked at carpenter's trade; opened a tavern, 1808, at Kingston, Roane County; one of the commissioners to superintend building of courthouse at Kingston, 1809; named a trustee of Rittenhouse Academy, Roane County, 1802; appointed, 1821, a trustee of East Tennessee College, Knoxville, 1821. Had moved to Knoxville, Knox County, 1814, when appointed treasurer for East Tennessee; entered partnership in mercantile business in Knoxville in which he continued several years; returned, 1829, to farm at Philadelphia, then in Roane but later in Loudon County; remained there for rest of life except for two years in Nashville, Davidson County, holding state office. Commissioner of revenue for Roane County, 1804; treasurer for East Tennessee, 1815-27; State Treasurer, 1843-45. Member Presbyterian Church. Died at home, Philadelphia, Roane County, Dec. 1, 1852; buried in Presbyterian Cemetery nearby. Brother of John Robinson NELSON, sometime member of Tenn. General Assembly.
Sources: Wells, History of Roane County, 16; Goodspeed, History of Roane County, do., History of Knox County, 1023; Lenoir, History of Sweetwater Valley, 253-56; Roane County Court Minute Book A, 1801-05; p. 181; Miller, Official Manual, 172, 173. Tenn. Blue Book, 1967-68, p. 283; University of Tennessee Record, I (1898), p. 255.
From: Biographical Directory, Tennessee General Assembly, 1796-1969, Roane County, Tennessee State Library and Archives.