Biography of Colonel Dew Moore Wisdom

Dew Moore Wisdom was born February 3, 1836, at Medon, Madison County, Tennessee, being the eldest son of William S. Wisdom, the leading merchant and landowner of McNary County, Tennessee, and widely known throughout the State. His mother was a Miss Jane Anderson, of an old family, from the eastern part of Tennessee. Dew studied at the neighborhood schools until sixteen years of age, when he went to Cumberland University, Lebanon, graduating and securing his B. A. degree in 1857. Soon afterward he commenced the practice of law in Purdy, Tennessee, and there remained until the outbreak of the war, when he was elected captain of Company F, Thirteenth Tennessee Infantry, Confederate service. Early in the war Captain Wisdom was twice wounded, once in the mouth and once in the face, a bullet knocking out his front teeth at the battle of Belmont. At Shiloh he was wounded in the left thigh, and at Pittsburg Landing was further disabled so as to render him unfit for infantry service. Accordingly he joined the cavalry, and was for fourteen months lieutenant colonel of what was known as Julius Battalion, under General P. D. Roddie. When General N. B. Forrest took charge of the West Tennessee and North Mississippi departments, Mr. Wisdom was appointed to the colonelcy of the Nineteenth Tennessee Regiment, and served in this rank until the close of the war. While with General Forrest he was four times wounded, receiving in all seven wounds during his entire service. After the war Colonel Wisdom resumed the practice of law in Mississippi and as soon as the reconstruction period was over was elected to the State senate, State of Mississippi, from Tishomingo County. He served in this office for one term, and moved to Jackson, Tennessee, where he became proprietor of the Tribune, a weekly, devoted to the grand old Democratic Party, which paper he was identified with for fourteen years. In 1871 he as appointed clerk and master of chancery court for Madison County, which office he held for twelve years, or two terms, having been re-elected. In 1882 Colonel Wisdom engaged in the publication of the Fort Smith Herald (having moved to that town), but sold out his interest in 1883, when Cleveland was elected President, and was appointed chief clerk of the Union Agency, Muskogee, serving four years until removed from office by Benjamin Harrison, since which time he has been practicing law in the United States courts, Muskogee. Colonel Wisdom married in January 1862, at Inka, Mississippi, Miss Anna Terry, a young lady of great accomplishments and superior conversationalist. By this marriage he had four children, William, aged twenty-seven; Lucille, aged twenty-two (now Mrs. Eberle); Fentress, aged twenty-one, and Terry, seventeen. Colonel Wisdom is five feet inches in height, weighs 250 pounds, and is a man of intellectual and gentlemanly appearance. He is highly educated, and as a lawyer ranks far above the average. Few professional men are more widely or more favorably known throughout the Indian Territory than Colonel Wisdom, while his attachment to the lost cause, and the sufferings he has endured on many a battlefield, render him dear to every loyal Southerner.



Indian Territory,

O'Beirne, Harry F. and Edward S. The Indian Territory: Its Chiefs, Legislators, and Leading Men. St. Louis. 1898.

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