The Bobbitt Family In America
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BENJAMIN FRANKLIN BOBBITT 1828 - 1899

Son of James and Mary Bobbitt

Benjamin Franklin Bobbitt was born on November 6, 1828 in Rutherford County, Tennessee. He was the ninth child and sixth son of James and Mary (Gunn) Bobbitt. He was the last child to be born in Rutherford County, and two years later moved with the family to Gibson County where he lived his entire life.

The Bobbitt family arrived in Gibson County in 1830. Later they were joined by more Bobbitt families who were descendants of James Bobbitt, son of William and Susannah (James) Bobbitt. Sometime during the period between 1830 and 1845, the area of present day Dyer, Tennessee was called Bobbittville. The town originally was laid off on lands of Benjamin Franklin Bobbitt. When the railroad came through Gibson County, the name was changed to Dyer Station to promote its location as a shipping point for neighboring Dyer County. In 1899 the town was incorporated as Dyer, Tennessee.

The first post-office of Dyer was opened on January 8, 1860 in the General Merchandise Store of Berry and Bobbitt with Benjamin F. Bobbitt as the first postmaster.

On February 13, 1850, Benjamin Bobbitt married Martha Ann Dinwiddie. She was a daughter of J and M. Dinwiddie. Martha was born on December 7, 1831. The couple had one daughter who was born on December 4, 1850, and named Mary E. Bobbitt. Mary died on February 8, 1851, just a short time after the death of her mother on December 22, 1850.

Benjamin Bobbitt selected for his second wife a Mary Elizabeth Berry. The couple were married on December 27, 1854 at Dyer. She was the daughter of John Campbell Berry and Nancy Ramsey Berry, and a sister to James L. Berry.

In 1858, James L. Berry and Benjamin Bobbitt erected the first store building on what was then the Benjamin Bobbitt farm.

When the war between the states began, Benjamin Bobbitt and James Berry both volunteered to serve the army of the Confederate States of America: and served in the 47th Tennessee Infantry. They were both in the battle of Shilo. Benjamin Bobbitt was captured at Kennesaw Mountain and was taken a prisoner of war to a camp in Chicago, Illinois.

After the war, Benjamin Bobbitt returned to farming and became an expert in the raising of strawberries. He became associated with the fruit box factory at Dyer. In 1891 he invented an apparatus for making strawberry baskets that greatly improved the packing and shipping of fresh strawberries.


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