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John Dugger
Oct 1, 1780 - Aug 2, 1869
Mary Engle
Dec 22, 1785 - Feb 7, 1869
Name: Benjamin Carter Dugger
Born: December 7, 1813
Location: Carter County, Tennessee
1) November 15, 1852 - Mary E. Campbell
in Polk County, Tennessee
Died: July 30, 1891
Location: Fannin County, Georgia
F178 His Life and Service
(Story #1)
"The Life and Service of Honorable Benjamin Carter Dugger" appeared in the Blue Ridge Summit Post in June, 1889 in serial form. The articles did not have a byline. An article written by Elizabeth Hackney (date of writing unknown) and some of the very faded and time-damaged clippings were given to the Fannin County History Book for this article on the life and service of a colorful state legislator from Fannin County by his great, great grandson, J. Fred Taylor, Sr. Descendants of Benjamin Carter Dugger are these great, great grandchildren: J. Fred Taylor, Sr. Blue Ridge; Anna Zella Taylor Parris, Alcoa, Tennessee; C.W. Kiker, Jr., Cadman Robb Kiker, and Dugger Paul Kiker of Blue Ridge: Mrs. Pearl Gilliam Queen, Mrs. Dorothy Gilliam Thomas of Blue Ridge; Lawrence and Leabon Gilliam, both of Michigan; C.H. Kiker, Sr., Roy Kiker, Ruth Kiker Johnson, Gusta Kiker, and Lucille Kiker Harris.
The following is from the Elizabeth Hackney story:
Wearing a coonskin cap and red flannel hunting shirt, carrying a stuffed wildcat skin, two heads of cabbage, some specimens of copper and iron ore, minerals and marble, and carrying a jug of blockade "Joy Juice," Benjamin Carter Dugger appeared before the Georgia Legislature in 1874, representing Fannin County.
Benjamin Carter Dugger, the eccentric mountain sage, to whom this section of North Georgia owes much, he having been a leading factor in securing the Marietta and North Georgia Railroad, now the Louisville and Nashville Railroad, through untiring efforts to have legislation enacted, to secure a charter, and from time to time to have that charter amended, was the object of much amusement to other members of the Georgia legislature. but at the same time he was held in high esteem by those same members for no man ever dared question Ben Dugger's honesty of purpose.
On December 13, 1818, Benjamin Carter Dugger was born in Carter County, Tennessee, a county which was the birthplace of a galaxy of noted men: Honorable Nat Taylor and his distinguished sons, Governor Robert L. Taylor and Governor Alfred A. Taylor, R.R. Butler, and A.H. Pettibone. Ben's childhood days were passed near Taylorsville, Tennessee, where nothing of importance transpired to indicate an unusual public career for this eighth son in a family of thirteen boys and seven girls. Ben was born while his father was serving as a lieutenant under General Andrew Jackson in the War of 1812.
The Dugger Family was of Scotch descent. The name in Scotland was McDugger. The McDuggers, Camerons, McDonalds and Davidsons were famous Scotch clans when the House of Brunswick was elevated to the throne of Great Britain in 1714. When the Pretender landed in Scotland in 1715, these clans rallied to his support, a rebellion broke out, and the Pretender was proclaimed King of Great Britain. The Duke of Argyle, at the head of the British Army, attacked the Earl of Mars and the Pretender at Dumblain and routed them. Thus the clans were broken up and the cause of the House of Stuarts. These clans hated the House of Brunswick as intensely as they loved the Stuants. They fled to America and settled in Pennsylvania. Honorable Simeon Cameron was a descendant of the Cameron Clan and an ancestor of Ben Dugger.
The Duggers moved from Pennsylvania to North Carolina and then to East Tennessee. There the subject of this sketch was born. Of his boyhood and early young manhood, he liked most to relate hunting experiences in the wild lands of that mountain section, when there were no government foresters banging around to tell men which tree they could fell for camp fires, for this was a game country where freedom abounded. The sky was the limit for hunters and fishermen. His life in the open cultivated his love of the natural and sincere and left him with no artistic or poetic tendencies. Pioneer spirit was in his blood and as he was independent physically, so mentally he burst through the tyranny of inherited belief and by many sterling qualities of both mind and heart, rose from obscurity to a noble, useful, progressive and patriotic representative of the people of his beloved mountain section. a people who revere his memory because in life he was human in every ounce of his great frame, and in every impulse of his generous spirit.
(Note: Inscriptions on tombstones in the Dugger Cemetery near Butler, Tennessee, give these names and birth and death dates of Ben Dugger's ancestors Mary wife of J.F. Dugger, was born June 19 1817, and died April 17,1903. Jacob F. Dugger, born March 10, 1812, died September 3, 1888. Mary Engle, wife of John Dugger, Sr. 1785-1869, "The Mother of the 20 Duggers." and John Dugger [dates indecipherable from photo].)
by J. Fred Taylor, Sr.

F176 Political Career: 1868-1874
(Story #2) [PICTURE]
Honorable Benjamin Carter Dugger and his wife, Mary E. Campbell Taylor Dugger
The first political campaign of Benjamin Carter Dugger was waged in the year 1868 when he was a candidate for Justice of the Peace in Flint Hill District. his opponent being Cyrus Cook; both were Republicans. The Union League, which was then in existence, decided to be neutral and the result of this election was a tie, so there had to be a new race and in this one the League nominated Dugger and Cook ran as an independent, resulting in the election of Dugger by a majority of only six votes. His first venture in politics having been successful, in 1870 he entered the race for state representative of Fannin County, with William Franklin, William Humphrey, J.C. Cutcher and David Schuler as opponents. That campaign was a most interesting one. On the third day of the election, the Democrats, seeing they could not elect their candidate, proposed to support Dugger if he would support democratic measures, but this he steadfastly refused to do. The same proposition was made to Franklin and he accepted it and was elected by a very small majority.
Dugger was again nominated by the Republicans for representative of this county in 1872 and received a majority of one hundred and fifty-five votes over the Democratic candidate, Thomas H. Trammel. On January 8, 1873, he took his seat for the first time in the Georgia Legislature. Thus the generous qualities of a radiant personality ceased to be merely loyal, and Ben Dugger was soon recognized as a Republican leader in the Georgia Legislature. It is said that he was an object of much ridicule to his brother legislators. In fact, they said he was the ugliest man their mischievous eyes had ever gazed upon, and through his ignorance of the ways of city life, they often lured him into most ludicrous scrapes. By the end of the first session, however his associates came to recognize in him a philosopher who entered into the discharge of every duty with firmness and one whose nature was kindly and full of gentlemanly instinct.
Once when General John B. Gordon, Alexander H. Stephens, Benjamin H. Hill, and Herbert Tilden were all democratic candidates for United States Senate, and the race was very close, several attempts were made to secure Dugger's vote, even to the extent of offering to bribe him, which offer he refused with contempt, but he was too magnanimous to ever expose publicly those who made the attempt to buy his vote. He nominated Amos T. Akerman, who received fourteen votes, due to Dugger's influence. General Gordon was elected, as is well remembered.
During this session, he endeavored to secure legislation for his own section of the state, but because of prejudice against him and his constituents, he was unable to secure the passage of his bills, which, in almost every instant, were reported unfavorably by the committees to which they were referred.
In 1874 he was again elected representative of Fannin County by a majority of eighty votes over two democratic opponents, Andrew H. Morris and Samuel H. Ralston, and his opposition at this session of the legislature was about as severe as at the first During his second term, Honorable A.O. Bacon and Colonel Thomas Hardeman were candidates for Speaker of the House. Dugger supported Hardeman who was elected. It was at this session that he took the lead in support of a bill to amend the charter of the Marietta and North Georgia Railroad, which then extended from Marietta to Murphy, North Carolina, and had opened up the great marble, mineral and timber resources of the mountain section. This road now extends from Atlanta to Knoxville, Tennessee, and is a part of the Louisville and Nashville Railroad system. When he went into the House to make his argument for the bill, he wore a coonskin cap, a red work shirt, homemade homespun trousers, and carried a stuffed wildcat skin, two heads of cabbage, some specimens of iron and copper ore from the great Ducktown, Tennessee copper mining basin, samples of marble, and a jug of blockade whiskey to show the products of his section of the state.
It is of interest to note that Dr. Dugger secured $500.00 for a Peabody School to be established at Morganton at the 1872 legislative session. He was aided in this behest by Honorable John A. Jervis, Senator from the 41st District.
by J. Fred Taylor, Sr.
Notes 2:
Tennessee Marriage & Bible Records (
Pg. 307 & 309
Last Will and Testament of John Dugger
From the records of County Court Clerk of Carter County.
Sent by Mrs. W. M. Faught, Elizabethton, Tn.
Last Will and Testament of John Dugger, deceased:
8. I desire that my son, Benjamin C. Dugger, shall have one hundred acres of land at the foot of Stone Mountain and Baker's Gap Road, and joins Thomas Ward's land, mines and minerals excepted. I desire that my son, B.C. Dugger, shall have an equal share with his brothers in my Forge and sawmill and Forge land, only John Dugger, Jr., he has two shares of mines and minerals excepted for me and my heirs.

John Dugger, Sen. - Last Will and Testament  .

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