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Dr. Samuel Mayes Home/ Old Mayes Place

Updated: Jun 6

Corner of Zion Rd. and Canaan Rd. - now Rout 1.

Circa 1818. 2-story wood frame Federal home

Dr. Samuel Mayes (1759-1849) and Mary Frierson Mayes (1776-1855) constructed the place. Samuel and Mary wed in 1797. They were part of a large migration of Scot-Irish settlers who moved from South Carolina to southern middle Tennessee and what became Maury County. They settled in what became the Zion community south of Columbia. Dr. Mayes purchased 5,000 acres of land from a grant of Nathaniel Greene. They moved from South Carolina and started their farm as Dr. Mayes continued his medical practice as well. Eight generations have enjoyed the home.

Photo by Maury Co. CVB

The son George Whitfield Mayes (1811-1874) and Mary Elvira Stephenson Mayes (1814-1897) owned next. Then their daughter, Virginia Jane “Jennie” Mayes Watkins (1839-1920), inherited the property with her husband, Samuel Rush Watins (1839-1901). Jennie’s sister, Ophelia Mayes Orr and Robert Orr owned the Old Mayes Place next. They lived in Nashville on Woodland St. During the Civil War, Robert lived in Maury Co. where he met and married Ophelia Mayes, a member of one of the most prominent families in the area. Post war, the Orrs returned to Nashville, and Robert established a wholesale grocery business with his brothers, John Orr and William F. Orr. Orr left that family firm and went into partnership with others under Orr, Scoggins & Hume, then subsequently Orr, Hume & Co. Later, it changed yet again to Orr, Mizell & Co. until 1911.

The Orrs helped organize St. Anne’s Episcopal Church. Robert was a member of the executive committee of Fourth National Bank board. Robert and Ophelia’s daughter, Mary Orr, married Jo Conn Guild of Chattanooga. By the 1940s, a great, great, grandson Josephus “Jo” Conn Guild, Jr. (1887-1969) owned the property. Family members owned Idelwilde and Rosemont in Sumner Co.

His family created a scholarship for deserving ninth-grade students at Baylor School - the Jo Conn Guild Scholarship Program. He was married to Sarah Lamb Nichols (1890-1982, wed 1914), and then May Bondurant Young. It was 320 acres and raised cattle and hogs there. He lived in Chattanooga. In 1993, the last family descendant sold the Old Mayes Place with about 14 acres to Betsy and Robert “Bob” Duling. Duling is in the financial services industry with Hillard Lyons and then Raymond James/ Duling & Allen Asset Management. See also Robert Orr Home, Idelwilde, Rosemont


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