Thomas Neal Gandy

of Thomasville, GA


Occupying an honored position among the substantial business men of Brooks county, Capt. T. N. Gandy for a quarter of a century was actively identified with the advancement of the mercantile interests of Dixie as one of its leading general merchants. A son of Book A. Gandy, he was born December 30, 1836, in Thomas county, Georgia, of pioneer stock. According to tradition, the immigrant ancestor of the Gandy family came from England to America in colonial times, settling in South Carolina. He was twice married, his first wife bearing him twelve daughters, while his second wife became the mother of twelve sons, from whom the Gandys of the present generation are descended. Brinkley Gandy, the captain's grandfather, was born and reared in South Carolina. In 1803, accompanied by his family, he came to Georgia, locating as a pioneer in what is now Montgomery county, where he bought land, and was subsequently engaged in farming until his death. His wife, whose maiden name was Leah Nasworthy, was born in South Carolina, of English ancestry.

Born in Darlington district, South Carolina, in September, 1801, Book A. Gandy was but two years old when his parents brought him to Georgia. Growing to manhood in Montgomery county, he remained on the home farm until 1825, when he became one of the earlier settlers of Thomas county. Buying a tract of land five miles east of Thomasville, he began the pioneer labor of hewing a farm from the forest. Four of his brothers came with him to Thomasville, and each subsequently married, and raised large families. After clearing quite a portion of his land, he sold, and bought another tract twelve miles east of Thomasville, and was there a resident until his death, in the seventy-fifth year of his age. He married Elizabeth Browning, who was born in Montgomery county, Georgia. Her father, Daniel Browning, a native of North Carolina, settled in Montgomery county, Georgia, in 1803. In 1827 he removed to Thomas county, and having purchased land four miles east of Thomasville was there engaged in tilling the soil a number of seasons. Retiring then from active pursuits, he spent the remainder of his long life of four score years with his children. He married Honor Grace, who was born, it is thought, in Tattnall county, Georgia. Seven sons and three daughters were born into their household, all of whom were living at the breaking out of the Civil war, at its close the mother, one daughter and four sons had joined the silent majority on the other side. Of the marriage of Book A. and Elizabeth (Browning) Gandy, ten children were born, as follows: Thomas N., Henry, Book, Brinkley and Maria, twins, Fatima, Albert, Taylor, Mary and William. Five of the sons served in the Confederate army during the war between the states, four of whom, Henry, Book, Brinkley and Albert, lost their lives in the service.

Brought up in Thomas county, T. N. Gandy acquired his early education in the public schools, and was well trained in the different branches of agriculture as a youth. About 1859 his father gave him a farm, and two years later, at the outbreak of the Civil war, he enlisted in the company known as the Thomas County Volunteers. He was mustered in as first sergeant of his company, and six mouths later was promoted to the rank of lieutenant. The company was attached to the Twenty-ninth Georgia Volunteer Infantry, which was first sent to the Atlantic coast, and later to northern Georgia to oppose Sherman's forces. In the summer of 1864 Mr. Gandy was commissioned captain of a company of Georgia Reserves, which was assigned to the Twelfth Georgia Volunteer Infantry, and of that company he had command until the close of the conflict. Returning then to Georgia, Captain Gandy resumed work on the farm which his father had given him. He subsequently sold out, purchased eleven hundred acres of land in the same county, and for eight years successfully managed his large plantation. Selling that property, Captain Gandy was for a few years engaged in the livery business at Thomasville. In 1887 he opened a general store in Dixie, and here, by his systematic business methods, his strict attention to all of its details, and his thoroughly upright dealings, he met with most gratifying results, winning for himself an honorable record as a merchant. He sold out his place of business in August, 1912.

Captain Gandy married, January 26, 1859, Miss Maggie Kemp, daughter of Peter and Alley Kemp, of Thomas county. Both the captain and Mrs. Gandy are members of the Methodist Episcopal church, South. Politically the captain was formerly a Whig, but is now an earnest supporter of the principles enunciated by the Democratic party. Although not an aspirant for public office, he has served as justice of the peace the past nine years.


List of descendants.

If you are a descendant of Thomas and your branch is not on this descendant list please email me with all of the names and I will add them. Thank you.

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