Col. John H. Fitten

The Cartersville Express
Cartersville, Georgia
July 12, 1877, Page 4
Transcribed by:  

A Sketch of the Life of Another of Bartow’s Delegates.
[From the Atlanta Constitution.]

John H. Fitten was born on the 5th of October, 1818, in Greene county, Georgia.  His paternal grandfather was one of the earliest settlers of Mecklenburg county, N. C., and belonged to a long line of Scotch Presbyterians.  Entering the Revolutionary war, he fell mortally wounded at the battle of Eutaw Springs, S. C.  His father came to Georgia at the close of the last century.  He served in the war of 1812, was a substantial and successful farmer, a brave and good man, and was himself an elder in the Presbyterian church for over half a century.  Col. Fitten graduated with distinguished honor at Oglethorpe University in the class of 1840.  Shortly after he graduated he was elected to the chair of mathematics and astronomy, made vacant by the resignation of Dr. Crawford.  Soon after this, a vacancy having occurred in the Professorship of Ancient Languages, he was requested by the Board, and consented to hear, in addition to the recitations connected with his department, the recitations of the Junior and Senior classes in Latin and Greek.  He married Miss Annie S. Martin, of Augusta, Ga., a lady of wealth and culture.  After he resigned his professorship he became editor and proprietor of the Southern Eclectic.  This magazine was intended for the more cultivated class of readers, and to occupy very much the same place in the South that Lutell’s Living Age held in the North.  This enterprise was successful so long as he retained his connection with it; and when, on account of ill health, he disposed of his interest in it to his associate, Col. D. K. Whittaker, formerly of the Charleston Southern Quarterly; its subscription list contained about three thousand of the most elite readers in the South.  Since the war Col. Fitten has been engaged in teaching a select high school at his beautiful place in Bartow county.

Col. Fitten has devoted much of his time to agricultural pursuits.  For a number of years he was a member of the Executive Committee of the State Agricultural Society.  At present he owns one of the most beautiful and valuable farms in North Georgia.  It was here he became a leading pioneer in the cultivation of clover and the artificial grasses in Georgia.  For his success in development of this branch of agricultural industry in the State, he was voted a special premium of two hundred dollars in silver plate by the State Agricultural Society.

Col. Fitten’s life has been devoted to agriculture, general literature and science. He has never held a civil or political office, nor has he ever asked for one.  He was nominated for the Constitutional Convention without his knowledge, and was the most surprised man in the district when he afterwards heard of it.  He never solicited a man’s vote during the canvass, and yet received the next highest vote polled in his district.


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