Henderson County, Kentucky Biography


Hon. Montgomery MERRITT, lawyer and soldier, was born in Todd County, Kentucky in October, 1845, and received his early education from public and private schools of that county, graduating at Comberland University, Lebanon, Tennessee, as valedictorian of his class.

His father, Daniel Ross MERRITT, a physician and farmer, was born in Williamson County, Tennessee, in the year 1800, and died in 1887. He was married three times. The mother of Montgomery was born in Russellville, Logan County, Kentucky in the year 1811, and died in Todd County in 1885. She was the third wife and married in 1836.

In May, 1861, under the juzzas of the South for separation, his hot young blood was kindled into a flame, and, without regard for his tender age, enlisted in the First Kentucky Infantry, Confederate service, for one year. At that time he was only sixteen years of age. He was engaged in many minor contests, and in the fall of 1861, was discharged from the service on account of physical disability. He returned to his home and remained until the fall of Fort Donnelson, when he rejoined the army, this time with General John H. MORGAN. He accompanied MORGAN in all of his raids, and in a sanquinary engagement at Russellville, was shot by a Minie ball in the shoulder. He was with MORGAN on his Indiana and Ohio raid and was captured at Buffington's Island, 21 Jul 1863. He was sent a prisoner to Camp Douglas, Chicago, and from there, in February, 1865, on to Richmond, Virginia, for exchange. He surrendered at the disbandment in 1865.

On leaving college, Mr. MERRITT immediately entered into the practice of law, and in 1869, removed to Henderson and formed a co-partnership with Judge Samuel B. VANCE, which continued up to the time of Mr. VANCE's removal to Evansville years afterward. Mr. MERRITT has never sought office, but in 1877, was nominated and elected to represent Henderson County in the Legislature of 1877 and 1878 without any particular effort on his part.

Mr. MERRITT has been twice married - first, in 1871 to Miss Mary Field GREEN of Lebanon, Tennessee and secondly, to Miss Eliza ALVES of Henderson, on 26 Dec 1877.

In religion he is a Presbyterian, having been a member of that church for twenty years. He is a member of the order of the Knights of Pythias. He was mainly instrumental in the organization of the Planters' National Bank and has been its President from its beginning. Always a close observer of men and things, he has ever been a shrewd calculator of values in business matters, which fact his present happy worldly condition amply attests. A man of excellent social powers, entertaining and instructive, sensible and dignified, he has, by his easy and affable manners, drawn about himself a circle of warm, personal friends, without in the slightest degree, engendering that undue familiarity which is the ever sure attendant of dimished popular appreciation. Courteous, kind and considerate in his bearing towards others, and charitable where charity is deserved, he is, and always has been, in every sense of the word, a worthy, exemplary citizen. As a practitioner, he stands at the head of the bar, and no better evidence of his legal work can be asked that is attested in his being the advisor and retained attorney for several large and important corporations.

Starling's History of Henderson County, Kentucky, 1887.



Montgomery Merritt age 35, Page 155, House No. 204; Eliza age 29.


Montgomery Merrit, 24 Oct 1924, Fernwood, Age unknown, 1293, 9
Eliza Bernard Merritt, 06 May 1930, Fernwood, Age unknown, 1293, 10

Contributed by Netta Mullin, HCH&GS
Copyright 2002 HCH&GS