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Polk's Tax Collectors

January 1997 to Present

Joe G. Tedder was born on February 28th, 1962 in Tampa. Tedder is married to Tracey Duff Tedder, a Professor at Polk Community College, and they have a son, Joseph.

Tedder was first elected to the position of Tax Collector in November of 1996 and was originally sworn in on January 7th, 1997. He has subsequently been reelected to the position of Tax Collector in 2000, 2004 and 2008.

Tedder's past public activities include having served as a State Legislator in the Florida House of Representative from 1992 through 1996. He also serves and has served on numerous public committees and boards.

Under Tedder's leadership, the Tax Collector's Office has developed an extensive performance and accountability program, "Outline for Success" (OFS). Pursuant to this program, the office adopted an organizational mission, performance management approach to its operations and services, and has undertaken extensive modernizations in the areas of technology and staff training. Technological improvements included the introduction of public oriented electronic services and leading in the area of online payments capabilities.

Tedder attended public schools in Polk County and graduated from Lakeland Senior High School. He is a graduate of Florida Southern College with a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting. Tedder is also designated as a Certified Florida Collector.

Tedder spent a decade in the field of public accounting working for a local CPA firm founded by his father. There he prepared corporate and individual tax returns, audits of both non-profit and governmental agencies, and financial statements.

Click here for a current biography of Joe G. Tedder.

Notes:

Information and photo developed by the Tax Collector's Office for Polk County, Florida.


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Past Tax Collectors

January 1995 to January 1997

Jack Garland Fouts, a fifth generation Floridian, was born in Lakeland in 1951. He is married to Jennie Bouton Fouts, and they have a daughter, Lauren.

Fouts was appointed to the position of Tax Collector for Polk County in January of 1995 by Governor Lawton Chiles to complete an unexpired term of office through January of 1997. Prior to his appointment, Fouts was a long-time employee of the Tax Collector's Office. He started out as entry-level clerk, worked his way up to Senior Real Estate Clerk, then Taxes Division Director, and was promoted to Assistant Tax Collector in 1984.

During his service with Polk's Tax Collector's Office, Fouts was asked by Governor Chiles to take a leave of absence for a two month period, beginning in December of 1993, so that he could be appointed Interim Tax Collector for Glades County. Fouts appointment came as a result of the prior office holder in Glades County having been removed from office for engaging in criminal conduct.

Fouts has the rare distinction of having served as a Florida Tax Collector in two different counties.

Jack served as Assistant Tax Collector for Polk County, Florida until his retirement in July of 2007.


Notes:

Information and photo developed by the Tax Collector's Office for Polk County, Florida.

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January 1965 to December 1994

Hobson Strain was born December 5, 1932 in Polk County, Florida and currently lives in Lakeland with his second wife, Sue Goodrich. He was previously married to Ann Keefe and has seven children, three step-children, and seven grandchildren.1

Strain is Polk's longest serving Tax Collector as he entered office in January of 1965, and retired at he end of December, 1994. He was elected seven times without opposition. He was also employed for more than five years in the Tax Collector's Office prior to assuming the top position.2

Hobson Strain is a 1955 graduate of the University of Florida. He was elected to the University of Florida Hall of Fame and to Who's Who in American Universities and Colleges. Strain was elected as the outstanding Treasurer and Financial Officer in 1993 by the National Association of County Treasurers and Financial Officers. He is a past president of the Bartow Kiwanis Club, former treasurer of the Polk County Chapter of Credit Unions, former Polk County Campaign Chairman for the March of Dimes and past president of two PTA groups. He has also has been very active in youth baseball ,golf programs and the boy scouts.3


Notes:

1 Biographical information on file at the Polk County Tax Collector's Office; Lakeland Ledger, Jan. 29, 1964.

2 Florida State Archives records in vertical files at PCH≷ Lakeland Ledger, Jan. 29, 1964.

3 Biographical Information on file at the Polk County Tax Collector's Office; Lakeland Ledger, Jan. 29, 1964.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

Photo provided by the Tax Collector's Office.
 
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1941 to 1942, 1944 to 1965

Ray Clements was born on July 19, 1905 in Sylvester, Georgia and died June 12, 1993 in Lakeland. He is buried in the Oak Hill Burial Park in Lakeland. He and his wife Margaret had one son and two daughters.1

Clements served as Tax Collector from 1941 to 1965 with the exception of a military leave from 1942 to 1944. Only Hobson Strain (1965 - 1994) spent more time in this capacity.2

Moving to Lakeland with his family in 1908, Ray Clements was a lawyer and real estate broker in addition to his career as Tax Collector. He also started banks in Bartow, Dade City, Lakeland, Lutz and Winter Garden. Clements was president of the Lakeland Chamber of Commerce and a member of the Kiwanis Club.3


Notes:

1 Lakeland Ledger, June 13, 1993.

2 Polk County Record, October 6, 1942; January 7, 1941; November 17, 1944.

3 Lakeland Ledger, op. cit.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

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1942 to 1944

Lawrence Byron Durrance was born July 23, 1893, in Fort Meade and died March 2, 1975 in Bartow. He is buried at the Wildwood Cemetery in Bartow. Durrance married Bertie Lee at Live Oak, on July 5, 1917, and they had two sons and one daughter.1

Byron Durrance served as Acting Tax Collector from 1942 - 1944 while Ray Clements was on military leave. He spent thirty-three years in the Tax Collector's office and retired as Deputy Tax Collector in 1958. He was the first Polk County Tax Collector who was born in Polk County.2

Durrance was a World War I veteran and a long-time member of the American Legion. He was a grandson of William H. Durrance, the first Sheriff and Tax Collector of Polk County.3


Notes:

1 Imperial Polk County Genealogical Society Cemetery Records; Polk County Democrat, March 3, 1975; Margaret Lewis Durrance and Anne Durrance Folk, Lineage of Joseph Durrance.

2 Polk County Democrat, September 15, 1958.

3 Polk County Democrat, March 3, 1975; Durrance and Folk, op. cit.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

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1933 to 1941

Paul M. Henderson was born in 1890 in Chattanooga, Tennessee and died February 15, 1952 in Groveland. He is buried in the Roselawn Cemetery in Lakeland.1

Henderson was appointed Tax Collector in January, 1933 by Governor David Scholz to complete the term of J. P. Murdaugh, and he served until 1941.2

Paul M. Henderson had been a real estate developer prior to assuming public office and also was an accountant and chief clerk for the Atlantic Coast (railway) Line from 1911 to 1920. Residing in Lakeland since 1910, Henderson was a state president of the Elks Club, president of the Polk County Conservation Club, and a member of the Knights of Pythias and Woodmen of the World.3


Notes:

1 Lakeland Ledger, February 17, 1952; Polk County Cemetery Records - PCH≷ Polk County Democrat, March 16, 1934.

2 Polk County Democrat, January 27, 1933; Polk County Record, May 31, 1940, November 12, 1940.

3 Polk County Democrat, March 16, 1934.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

Photo courtesy of Florida State Elks Association.

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1915 to 1933

J. P. Murdaugh was born February 10, 1874 in Charleston, SC and died February 2, 1943 in Pinellas County. He is buried in the Wildwood Cemetery in Bartow. Murdaugh married Mattie Dial at Bartow, on August 18, 1895 and they had two sons and one daughter.1

J. P. Murdaugh was Tax Collector from March, 1915, to January, 1933 when he was suspended by Governor David Sholtz on charges of malfeasance. His suspension was upheld by the state senate, but he was brought to trial on two similar sets of charges for differing time periods and acquitted in each instance.2

Murdaugh was also Polk County Auditor, County Road Superintendent, and a member of the Masonic Order, Elks Club, Knights of Pythias, Order of Odd Fellows and the Woodmen of the World.3


Notes:

1 M. F. Hetherington, History of Polk County, FL, p.48, 297; Polk County Record, February 5, 1943; Imperial Polk County Genealogical Society Cemetery Records.

2 Polk County Democrat, Jan. 27, 1933, June 16, 1933, May 18,1934.

3 Hetherington, op. cit., p.297.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

Photo from M. F. Hetherington, History of Polk County.

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1910 to 1915

F. Marion Lanier was born in Florida in the 1870's. He and his wife Rosa had at least one son and one daughter.1

Lanier was Tax Collector from 1910 to 1915. He was nominated and essentially elected in the second Democratic Party primary election in the spring of 1910 after the original nominee, W. O. Jordan, decided not to run again.2 Lanier resigned his office in March 1915 in the middle of an audit brought on by "alleged shortages" which eventually were quantified as being in excess of $19,000. He was not formally charged with any crime.3

F. Marion Lanier and his family were living in Hillsborough County in 1920.4


Notes:

1 United States Census, 1910, 1920.

2 Bartow Courier-Informant, May 12, 1910, May 26, 1910, June 9, 1910.

3 Bartow Courier-Informant, Mar. 9, 1915, April 15, 1915.

4 United States Census, 1920.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

Photo from M. F. Hetherington, History of Polk County.

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1905 to 1910

W. O. Jordan was born in April, 1864 in Florida, He died on Oct. 6, 1926 in Hendersonville, North Carolina after being struck by a car. He married Fannie J. Crossland in Polk County on December 24, 1896, and they had three daughters.1

Jordan was Tax Collector from 1905 to 1910 and had been nominated for another term by a large majority of Democratic voters when he was accused of irregularities in his duties and resigned.2

W. O. Jordan was a member of a popular local music group called the Bartow Silver Cornet Band in the 1890's. He relocated to North Carolina about 1917 and was in the automobile business and then the grocery business in that state.3


Notes:

1 United States Census, 1900; Polk County Marriage Records; Hendersonville (NC) News., October 7, 1926.

2 Bartow Courier-Informant, May 12, 1910, May 26, 1910; Florida State Archives records, ("County Officers" vertical files - PCH&GL).

3 Bartow Courier-Informant, December 9, 1896; Hendersonville (NC) News, op. cit.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

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1891 to 1905

J. W. Boyd was born July 6, 1844 in Bath County, Kentucky and died May 29, 1919 in Miami. He is buried in the Oak Hill Cemetery in Bartow. He and his wife Anna E. had one son and four daughters.1

Commonly called "Colonel," Boyd served as Tax Collector from 1891 - 1905 and was also County Surveyor.2 He was in a Kentucky Confederate unit during the Civil War.3

J. W. Boyd came to Polk County in 1883 and operated the Fort Meade Land Agency. He was the first secretary of the Bartow Home Building and Loan Association in 1894. Boyd was very active in the Masonic Order, being a past grand master of the F&AM, past grand High Priest RAM and past Grand Commander KT.4


Notes:

1 Bartow Courier-Informant, June 6, 1919; Imperial Polk County Genealogical Society Cemetery Records, Florida State Census, 1885; United States Census, 1900.

2 Florida State Archives records ("County Officers" vertical file - PCH&GL); Bartow Courier-Informant op. cit.; Florida State Gazetteer, 1886-1887, p. 374.

3 Imperial Polk County Genealogical Society Records; Janet B. Hewitt, Roster of Confederate Soldiers, Vol. II

4 Canter Brown, Jr., Fort Meade, 1849-1900, p.85; Canter Brown, Jr., In the Midst of All That Makes Life Worth Living Polk County, Florida, to 1940, p. 133; M. F. Hetherington, History of Polk County, FL, p. 47; Imperial Polk County Genealogical Society Cemetery Records.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

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1881 to 1891

James Dallas Tillis was born August 22, 1849 in Columbia County and died June 4, 1939, in Polk County. He is buried in the Wildwood Cemetery in Bartow. Tillis married Hattie Viola Powell on Dec. 31, 1884 in Polk County, and they had one son and two daughters.1

J. D. Tillis was Tax Collector from 1881 to 1891 and Sheriff of Polk County from 1897 to 1905.2

Tillis was a member of a pioneer Polk County family as his father, Willoughby, brought his family to the Fort Meade area in 1855. When J. D. Tillis was six years old in 1856, the family dwelling was raided by Seminoles. The Tillis farm was raided and burned by Union forces during the Civil War.3

After leaving public service, J.D Tillis raised citrus and ran small hotel.4


Notes:

1 Sworn statements of J. D. and Hattie Tillis found in "Tillis" vertical file - PCH≷ M. F. Hetherington, History of Polk County, FL, p. 351; Imperial Polk County Genealogical Society Cemetery Records.

2 Florida State Archives records ("County Officers" vertical files - PCH&GL); Bartow Courier-Informant, December 30, 1896.

3 Canter Brown, Jr., In the Midst of All That Makes Life Worth Living Polk County, Florida, to 1940, p. 67,95,96.

4 Hetherington, op. cit.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

Photo courtesy of the Tillis Family.

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1879 To 1881

L. M. Ballard was born September 24, 1845 at Lake City and died April 19, 1906 in Lakeland. He is buried in the Lakeview Cemetery at Lakeland. He and his wife Sarah had at least three daughters. He married his second wife, Mollie, around 1895.1

Ballard served as Revenue or Tax Collector from 1879 to 1881 and also was the first mayor of Mulberry in 1901. He was the postmaster at Medulla in the 1880's and a member of the Lakeland City Council.2

L. M. Ballard was a member of Co. H, 5th Florida Infantry, CSA, during the Civil War and established the first newspaper, the "Lakeland News," in Lakeland in 1884. Some credit him as establishing the beginnings of Lakeland when he moved his store from Medulla to what later became Lakeland in 1884.3


Notes:

1 Bartow Courier-Informant, April 26, 1906; David W. Hartman and David Coles, Biographical Rosters of Confederate and Union Soldiers, 1861-1865 p. 1668; Florida State Census, 1885, United States Census, 1900.

2 Florida State Archives records ("County Officers" vertical files - PCH&GL); M. F. Hetherington, History of Polk County, FL, p. 162; John J, Gallagher, Florida Post Offices; Bartow Courier Informant, op. cit.

3 Hartman and Coles, op. cit.; Canter Brown, Jr., Florida's Peace River Frontier, p. 275.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

Photo courtesy of Alicia Shadburn and Deborah Forcier.

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Nominated 1878, Served To 1879

William Hampton Johnson was born August 11, 1843 in Tattnall County, Georgia and died January 25, 1915 in Polk County. He is buried in the Oak Hill Cemetery in Bartow. Johnson married Sarah A. Pollard in Polk County in 1871, and they had two sons and five daughters. He married Lassie E. Muncie around 1890.1

Johnson was nominated in late 1878 as Tax Collector by the citizens of Polk County. In that era, the Governor appointed Revenue or Tax Collectors, and there is no official record that Johnson was confirmed in office by the Governor. There is some evidence that he had not officially taken office as Collector well into 1879.2

William H. Johnson came to Polk County with his father in 1861 and served in Co. E, 7th Florida Infantry, CSA, in the Civil War. He also served in local government as Tax Assessor, Clerk of Court, and Mayor of Bartow.3


Notes:

1 Bartow Courier-Informant, January 28, 1915; Imperial Polk County Genealogical Society Cemetery Records; United States Census, 1880,1900,1910; David W. Hartman and David Coles, Biographical Rosters of Florida Confederate and Union Soldiers, 1861-1865, p. 726.

2 Sunland Tribune (newspaper-Tampa, FL), January 18, 1879, May 31, 1879, July 3, 1879.

3 Bartow Courier-Informant, op. cit.; Polk County Court "Appearance" Book - 1880s; Hartman and Coles, op. cit.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

Photo courtesy of Don Wilson Jr.

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1877 to 1878

Nathan Snow Blount was born December 29, 1832 in Beaufort County, South Carolina and died October 20, 1880 in Polk County. He is buried in the Oak Hill Cemetery in Bartow. Blount married Martha A. C. Knight in Hillsborough County in 1859, and they had five sons and a daughter.1

N. S. Blount served as Revenue or Tax Collector in 1877 - 1878. He was the first County Treasurer in 1861 and also a member of the Board of County Commissioners in 1869 and 1876. Blount was also the Assessor in 1873 and Clerk of the Circuit Court from 1873 to 1877.2

Nathan Blount was in a militia unit in 1856 during the Third Seminole War and the commanding officer of the South Florida "Bulldogs" who became Co. E, 7th Florida Infantry, CSA, in 1862.3

N. S. Blount was a member of the pioneer Blount family that settled in the Bartow area in 1851. He Chaired the Polk County School Board from 1869 to 1873.4


Notes:

1 David W. Hartman and David Coles, Biographical Rosters of Florida Confederate and Union Soldiers 1861-1865, p. 725; Polk County Minute Book 1-83; Blount Family History (PCH&GL); Julius J. Gordon, Comrades in Arms, Vol. II, p. 11.

2 Canter Brown, Jr., Florida's Peace River Frontier, p. 208,412,422; Florida State Archives records ("County Officers" vertical files - PCH&GL).

3 Hartman and Coles, op. cit.; Gordon, op. cit.

4 Blount Family History, op. cit.; United States Census, 1880; Gordon, op. cit.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

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1873 to 1877

Enoch Everett Mizell (also spelled Mizelle in some records) was born June 18, 1841 in Florida, probably in Alachua County. He died December 31, 1902 in Polk County. His obituary indicates that he lived in Willard, but this may be a misspelling as there was a community called Millard in Northwestern Polk County at that time. He is buried in the Socrum Cemetery. Mizelle married Martha Ann Bryant in Polk County on January 20, 1864, and they had three sons and six daughters.1

E. E. Mizell served as Sheriff and Tax Collector from 1873 - 1877 and was also the Assessor in 1873 - 1874. He was elected to the Board of County Commissioners in October, 1865 and to the Florida House of Representatives in 1876.2

Mizell was in a militia unit during the Third Seminole War and also served with the 7th Florida Infantry, CSA, and later with the Central Florida "Cow Cavalry" during the Civil War.3

E. E. Mizell was an initial officer of Masonic Lodge #79 at Kathleen, Florida.4


Notes:

1 Bartow Courier-Informant, January 21, 1903; Socrum Cemetery records; Mizell family history (PCH&GL).

2 Canter Brown, Jr., In the Midst of All That Makes Life Worth Living Polk County, Florida to 1940, p. 102; Canter Brown, Jr., Florida's Peace River Frontier, p. 208; Florida State Archives records ("County Officers" vertical files - PCH&GL).

3 David W. Hartman and David Coles, Biographical Rosters of Florida Confederate and Union Soldiers 1861-1865, p. 699.

4 Polk County Historical Quarterly, June, 1976.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

Photo courtesy of Kathleen Area Historical Society.
click here to view entire photo

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1872 to 1873

Felix J. Seward was born in Alabama in 1842 and died in Florida on August 30, 1888. He is buried in the Oak Hill Cemetery in Bartow. Seward married Susan Rebecca Hayman, and they had three sons and two daughters. After her death, he married her sister, Lillie Oregon Hayman on May 21, 1880.1

Seward served as Sheriff and Tax Collector in 1872 and 1873. He had also been County Treasurer and in April, 1873 was appointed to Board of County Commissioners.2

Militarily, Felix Seward was in a militia unit during the Third Seminole War in 1856. He was also a member of the South Florida "Bulldogs" that were organized in Polk County in 1862 and joined the Confederate Army as Co. E, 7th Florida Infantry. Seward was captured near Atlanta and later enlisted in the 5th Volunteer Infantry (US).3

Felix Seward also practiced law in Polk County.4


Notes:

1 David W. Hartman and David Coles, Biographical Rosters of Florida Confederate and Union Soldiers, 1861-1865; Marriage Licenses of Polk County, FL; Sunland Tribune (newspaper - Tampa FL) July 24,1879; Hayman family histories (PCH&GL); Imperial Polk County Genealogical Society Cemetery Records; Richard J. Terry, Soldiers of Florida, p. 15.

2 Canter Brown, Jr., Florida's Peace River Frontier, p. 208, 408; Florida State Archives records ("County Officers" vertical files - PCH&GL).

3 Hartman and Coles, op. cit., p. 725.

4 Julius J. Gordon, Comrades in Arms, Vol. II, p. 99.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

Photo from Canter Brown, Jr., Florida's Peace River Frontier.

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1868 to 1872

Archibald Hendry was born February 2, 1820 in Liberty County, Georgia and died June 16, 1897 in Fort Pierce. He married Mary Ann Clardy about 1853 in Hamilton County, and they had four sons and five daughters.1

Hendry settled near Chicora in Polk County around 1860 and was appointed Sheriff, Tax Collector, and Assessor in 1868. He left office in 1872 due to a lack of support during a very trying time for law enforcement officers. He was indicted but not prosecuted for embezzlement the next year. Around this time he moved to Brevard County.2

Hendry's political difficulties may have been due to his Civil War record. He is listed in May-June, 1864 as a recruit for the 2nd Florida Cavalry (US). This was a Ft. Myers based unit that made several raids into Polk County in an attempt to disrupt cattle supplies to the Confederate armies.3

Archibald Hendry also served in a Ft. Brooke (Tampa) based militia unit in 1858 during the Third Seminole War.4

(Hendry was the 1st Constitutional Officer to serve as Tax Collector.)


Notes:

1 Milton D. Wilson, Pioneer Families of Polk County and South Florida; Milton D. Wilson, The Hendry Family, (both at the PCH&GL).

2 Canter Brown, Jr., In the Midst of All That Makes Life Worth Living Polk County, Florida, to 1940, p. 108, 110; Canter Brown, Jr., Florida's Peace River Frontier, p. 208.

3 Brown, Ibid., p.361.

4 Richard J. Terry, Soldiers of Florida.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

Photo from Milton D. Wilson, Pioneer Families of Polk County and South Florida

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1866 to 1867

Robert Wilkinson (also spelled Wilkenson in some records) was born in Georgia around 1825. His wife's name was Elizabeth, and they had at least five sons and three daughters.1

Wilkinson was Sheriff, Tax Collector, and Assessor in 1866 and 1867. He had been elected in October, 1861, as County Surveyor and to the Florida House of Representatives in October, 1864. He became Bartow Postmaster in early 1869 and was appointed as a County Commissioner in that same year.2

Robert Wilkinson was an initial officer of Bartow Masonic Lodge #9 when it was founded in the mid 1860s.3


Notes:

1 United States Census, 1870.

2 Canter Brown, Jr., Florida's Peace River Frontier, p. 190,219,897,401.

3 M. F. Hetherington, History of Polk County, FL, p.42; Brown, op. cit., p. 97.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

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1863 to 1866

Cincinnattus Winchester Deeson (also spelled Deason in some records) was born January 1, 1825 in Montgomery County, Alabama, and died March 19, 1900 in Osceola County. He married Mary Jane Jones on December 7, 1848 in Montgomery County, Alabama, and they had three sons and five daughters. He married Annie Elizabeth Simmons on December 18, 1892.1

Deeson served as Sheriff, Tax Collector, and Assessor from 1863 - 1866 after losing the race for Probate Judge in the first Polk County election in 1861. He was named as a County Commissioner in 1877.2

C. W. Deeson was a lieutenant in a militia unit during the Third Seminole War in Central Florida and was one of the first officers of Masonic Lodge #79 in Kathleen, Florida.3


Notes:

1 Edward G. Deeson, Deesons Across America (PCH&GL); United States Census, 1860, 1880.

2 Florida State Archives Records ("County Officers" vertical file - PCH&GL); Canter Brown, Jr., Florida's Peace River Frontier, p. 399,422; Florida Peninsular, April 20, 1861.

3 Edward G. Deeson, op. cit.; Polk County Historical Association Quarterly June, 1976.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

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October 1861 (Period Of Service Unknown)

Edward Tatnall Kendrick was born December 26, 1819 in Georgia and died at Knoxville, Tennessee, on December 22, 1862.1 He married Faraba Ann Moore in 1844, and they had three sons and two daughters by mid 1860.2

Kendrick was elected Sheriff on October 9, 1861, with his responsibilities also including Tax Collection and Assessment.3 He served as a lieutenant in a militia unit in the Polk County area in late 1856 during the Third Seminole War and later organized his own militia company.4 He later was a member of Co. E, 7th Florida Infantry, CSA in the Civil War and died of illness while serving with this unit.5

E. T. Kendrick was also a school teacher and school trustee in Fort Meade and was a law enforcement officer in Tampa area prior to moving to the Polk County area.6


Notes:

1 David W. Hartman and David Coles, Biographical Rosters of Florida Confederate and Union Soldiers, 1861-1865, p. 275.

2 Hartman and Coles, Ibid.; United States Census, 1860; Julius J. Gordon, Comrades in Arms, Vol. II, p.14.

3 Florida Election Records (microfilm - PCH&GL); Florida State Archives Records ("County Officers" vertical file - PCH&GL).

4 Canter Brown, Jr., In the Midst of All That Makes Life Worth Living Polk County, Florida, to 1940; Gordon, op. cit., p. 147.

5 Brown, op. cit. P. 88; Gordon, op. cit.

6 Canter Brown, Jr., Fort Meade, 1849-1900, p. 163-164.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

Photo from Sunland Tribune, Journal of the Tampa Historical Society, November 1993 (Polk County Historical and Genealogical Library)

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April 1861 to October 1861, Through Late 1863

William Hutto Durrance was born August 30, 1815 in Tattnall County, Georgia and died Febrary 27, 1879 in Polk County. He is buried in the Durrance Cemetary near Homeland (Polk County). Durrance married Sarah Harriett Robertson on May 9, 1844, and they had five sons and six daughters.1

Durrance was elected Sheriff (his duties included Tax Collection and Tax Assessment) on April 13, 1861 in the first Polk County election and served until replaced by E. T. Kendrick, who was elected in October 1861.2 He may also have served the remainder of Kendrick's term after Kendrick left for duty in the Civil War in March, 1862. Durrance again was elected Sheriff in October, 1862 and served until late 1863. 3

William H. Durrance also served in the Third Seminole War in a militia unit and was a member of a Confederate Civil War volunteer detachment stationed at Fort Meade in July-August, 1861.4


Notes:

1 Imperial Polk County Genealogical Society Cemetery Records; Durrance Family Records (at Polk County Historical and Genealogical Library - hereafter referred to as PCH&GL).

2 Florida State Archives Records ("County Officers" vertical file - PCH&GL); Florida Peninsular (newspaper - Tampa, FL) April 20, 1861; Florida Election Records (microfilm - PCH&GL).

3 Canter Brown Jr., Florida's Peace River Frontier, p. 397,399.

4 Durrance Family History (PCH&GL); Richard J. Terry, Soldiers of Florida, p. 15.

Information developed by Thomas L. Sailer.

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