In the month of February, 1837, when DeSoto County was just celebrating its first birthday, Samuel and Stephen D. JOHNSTON (1812-1863), brothers of Limestone County, Alabama, moved to the Hernando area of DeSoto County MS.
Samuel JOHNSTON was born in Warren County Georgia, 08 Dec 1813, but soon the family migrated to Alabama where he grew up. Samuel JOHNSTON married Minerva D. LEONARD 24 Aug 1835. Stephen D. JOHNSTON married Rebecca E. FLINN 10 Aug 1835.
These two couples soon moved to the newly opened land in DeSoto County, settling on adjoining farms east of Hernando and there raised their families.
Among the children of Samuel and Minerva JOHNSTON ws Thomas Franklin JOHNSTON who enlisted at Hernando as a private in Capt. James B. CHALMER's Company, 1st Regiment, 4th Brigade, Mississippi Volunteers in the Confederate Army on 27 Mar 1861. He was 24 years old and a farmer. His discharge is dated 31 March 1863.
Thomas Franklin JOHNSTON married first Flora Ann Elizabeth MAXWELL, daughter of Thomas T. MAXWELL and Amanda W. LEWIS. Amanda LEWIS was a cousin of Francis Scott KEY, author of "The Star Spangled Banner" His sister, Flora KEY, inspired the naming of Flora MAXWELL.
Children of Thomas Franklin and Flora MAXWELL JOHNSTON were, Theodore, Joseph Edward, Ruby, Mattie and David. Date of death and place of burial of Flora MAXWELL JOHNSTON is not known at this time.
Thomas Franklin JOHNSTON married second a Miss HOWARD, lived at Nesbit and is buried in the cemetery there. They had a son Howard, who was killed in an accident when young. Numerous descendants of these early settlers remain in DeSoto County today.
1840 DeSoto County Federal Census
pg 107 S.D. Johnston 1000100000000-1000100000000
Samuel Johnston 2000100000000-1010110000000
James Johnston 1010001000000-0010001000000
pg 120 Samuel Johston 1100010000000-1210010000000
1850 DeSoto County Federal Census
pg 379B 177/177
Samuel Johnston 36 M Farmer 3000 GA
Manerva 34 F TN; Thomas 14 M Student AL
Sarah 10 F Student MS; Joseph 8 M Student MS
Theordore 4 M MS
Urbane 2 F MS; Mary 1/12 MS
pg 385B 256/256
Stephen D. Johnston 38 M Farmer 5000 GA
Rebecca E. 33 F AL; Mary 60 F GA
James 14 M Student AL
Mary A. 11 f Student MS; Elizabeth 7 F Student MS
Frances 5 F MS
Mary S. Denty 13 F Student AL
William L. Henley 23 M Overseer AL
Johnston Family Cemetery is located just east of Malone Road and South of Sunset Drive on Property believed owned by Jeannie McMahon Range 7W, Township 2S, Section 35, NW 1/4
JOHNSTON Joseph W. 1842-1859 s/o Samuel and Minerva D. JOHNSTON
Mary A. 1850-1851
James B. 1836-1851 s/o Stephen D. and Rebecca D.
Stephen D. 1812-1863
Theodore T. 1846-1886
DOCKERY Alfred 1843-1853
Source: DESOTO DESCENDANTS Vol II Issue 2 1984
1840 Desoto County Census
1850 Desoto County Census (Northern Division)
DeSoto Cemetery Inscriptions compiled by J.B. Bell and Mildred M. Scott
DeSoto County Coordinator: Tim Harrison
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