Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Morgan Harbin Looney, Doc Holliday, and Margaret Mitchell

John Henry "Doc" Holliday (1851-1887) was the son of Henry Burroughs and Alice Jane McKey Holliday. Henry's brother was Dr. John Stiles Holliday. In 1855 John began construction of a Greek Revival style house in Fayetteville, GA and it was completed in 1856.

Pg. 32-33
[The house]
was on loan to the Fayetteville Seminary for use as faculty headquarters and a student dorm. Dr. [John] Holliday served as a trustee of the school, which was originally slated to be named Fayetteville Female Seminary. By the time it actually opened, it was the Fayetteville Academy. The new school was built on land that had been owned by Uncle James Johnson [married to Henry Burroughs Holliday's sister] before the school trustees purchased it from him for one hundred and fifty dollars. They, in turn, sold it to the academy for a mere five dollars. Located two blocks south of the courthouse, the school opened in 1857 as a coeducational institution. It gained considerable renown when the trustees, including Dr. Holliday, contracted with the highly regarded Morgan Harbin Looney and his brother George Cleveland Looney on January 16, 1857. The quality of the academy was important to the citizens because there was no public school until 1872 in Fayette County. The Looney brothers fulfilled everyone's expectations as the academy became well known over the entire state of Georgia. Dr. Holliday enrolled his sons, George and Robert, in the Academy.

John Henry was schooled at home, then went to an academy in Griffin, GA. He later went to Dental School, moved out west and became a gunslinger.

Abstracted from the book "Doc Holliday: A Family Portrait" by Karen Holliday Tanner, Univ. of Oklahoma Press, Norman, OK, 1998

Off the Georgia Encyclopedia page for Fayetteville, GA

Led by Morgan Harbin Looney, the academy became known as Fayetteville Seminary. Margaret Mitchell's grandmother was one of its early pupils. In the 1930s, as Mitchell was researching her novel Gone With the Wind (1936), she came to Fayetteville and visited the graves of her great-grandfather's family, many of whom were buried in the city's cemetery. These ancestors formed the basis for Mitchell's O'Hara clan. Scarlett O'Hara herself attended the fictional Fayetteville Female Academy in Gone With the Wind, and her character was based on stories that Mitchell's grandmother told.

1 comment:

  1. I wrote A Night to Remember on my blog a few years ago. It was the night Atlanta burned in 1864 and involved the Jonesboro and Fayetteville area. And it told of the connection between Margaret Mitchell and Doc Holliday. http://tinyurl.com/yg66hk5