I've made several trips to the Hurricane Creek area since I began my study in 1986. I get a special warm feeling when visiting the valley. Our family roots probably sprang from Normandy to England then to North Carolina and Smith County, TN but to me, the valley of Hurricane Creek feels like home. I know for a fact that my Dickens forefathers chose this valley for their permanent home in the late 1790s to early 1800s and when I visit there it feels like a 'homecoming'.   

The valley is sparsely settled now. The few houses that remain are scattered far apart and there is no hint that at one time this valley was home to many families. I searched in vain for evidence that
several of our Dickens families once lived there but the Dickens Cemetery is all I found. It's
possible that one or more Dickens families still live back in the hills and hollows but the only indication I located was a Dickens mailbox. 

The Maggart Post Office (1886 to 1903) was located in the Maggart Store and Maggart used to appear on maps but now there is nothing to indicate that Maggart ever existed.

Hurricane Creek is still there. It's the one lasting landmark that neither time nor the Corps of Engineers can obliterate. That's why I call my writing "Dickens of Hurricane Creek". Future generations, whether Dickens or Maggart or Bush or MacDonald or any of the many surnames who have TN roots in that valley can always use Hurricane Creek to identify the area.  

I finished writing the manuscript in 1988. I'm rushing now to get the information I found preserved because I doubt that anyone could duplicate some of the facts that I found and at my age (born in 1932) I know the calendar and my arteries are giving in to time.  

The facts, the names, the dates, and the research is as thorough as I could manage without
extensive travel. I searched for records and clues in every library and court house in the TN areas involved, I searched graveyards that are well maintained and some that have been neglected and hidden for decades, I spent many hours in the TN State Archives, and now I have searched the Internet extensively. I know there must be many records and journals out there somewhere, but I'll leave finding them to the next generation. I've done what I set out to do. I know where my family came from and the valley of Hurricane Creek in Smith County, TN feels like home to me.  
Howard D. Dickens (Doug),  2005.  Updates in 2007, 2008.

Smith County, TN. Circa  late 1790s to early 1900s.

Page 01. Introduction

Introduction Page 01.

Mr Bear
Waiting for me on Rainbow Bridge.

In 1798 Jeremiah Dickens bought 100 acres from Henry Peyton in Sumner County. I couldn't locate 
when Jeremiah sold it, perhaps because some of the early Sumner County Deed Books were lost. 
In 1808 Henry Dickens bought 100 acres in Smith County  from Henry Maggart of Sullivan County.
Henry Dickens owned 35 other acres at that time; I couldn't locate a deed for the 35 acres - perhaps
because the first Smith County Deed Book was lost. Jeremiah, Henry, John,  and other Dickens' of that era lived at Hurricane Creek.  You'll find them in tax rolls, early census records, and other public records.  

                 Dickens of Hurricane Creek by Howard Douglas Dickens, Copyright © 1986 - 2007.  
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                           Dickens of Hurricane Creek
Including: Maggart, Sullivans Bend, Elmwood, Chestnut Mound, Smith County, TN
Last updates June 11, 2008.