I found this article in the Orlando Library the other day and wanted to share it with you.
The article has a picture of John W. Inman. The title of the article is 'Inman, Lanier Marched Northward', by Webb Garrison in the Journal-Constitution. There must have been a separate article about Lanier.
A title for this could be 'Sweetening a Bitter Pill'. It was this Inman family, in essence, created Inman, SC, and was probably instrumental in Cleveland, Tenn., naming their main street Inman. Do you know how many people with different last names have the first name of Inman. Wrong! You guessed too few.
Submitted by Donald F. Inman
"I was forced to make Atlanta my home, bitterness
against us by Union people and bush-whackers was so great that we could not live in east
Tennessee," John H. Inman said when asked about his experiences in the aftermath of
the Civil War.
Shadrach W. Inman, who had been born on the banks of the French Broad River in East Tennessee, was responsible for the move that included his three ambitious sons. "Shadrach Inman didn't choose the cotton business," say old-timers in the region that he left behind when he moved his family to Atlanta. "He was forced into it."
Ruined financially by the war, Mr. Inman and his sons turned to cotton as the only commodity that offered any chance of making money. Their relatives, Samuel and Walter P. Inman, were already residents of Atlanta. Collectively, family influence was great enough to make Inman Park a lasting enclave within the growing industrial-financial center that had started as a railroad junction.
Once John H. Inman and his brothers and father became comfortably settled in Atlanta and began to prosper from trading in cotton, he was jolted from his home by new circumstances.
Alfred Austell, a one-time Confederate general, formed a partnership with William H. Inman and deiced to open a New York office. As the youngest male in the family with business experience, 21-year-old John was put on the train for the North.
His Georgia roots were deep; before the outbreak of the Civil War, he had been a clerk in his uncle's bank in Ringgold. Pro-Union sentiment was so strong in eastern Tennessee that a former quartermaster sergeant in Braxelton's Tennessee Calvary - a distinguished Confederate fighting
force - would have been miserable back home. With Ringgold nearly destroyed by Federal Troops, John went to Atlanta with his father and brothers and expected to spend the rest of his life in the city.
His trip to New York City was far more traumatic than his move to Atlanta had been. In Atlanta, he had many ex-Confederate friends - and a growing network of influential relatives. In New York, he would be all but alone - out in the cold.
John Inman kept his body warm and his spirits high by working hard. He delivered cotton by day and pored over financial records plus correspondence by night - working 16 hours out of 24.
By the time he was 26, the Tennessee native who had planned to make Atlanta his home had become "a wizard at predicting the way cotton would go." He formed a new corporation and made a quick fortune - a fortune big enough to cause old-timers in the city to label him "a carpetbagger in Wall Street."
Called by whatever name, John Inman became the first ex-Confederate to wield political power at the national level. In the hotly disputed election of 1876, he played a major role in the secret deal by which Democrats gave up the White House (won by Samuel Jones Tilden in terms of popular votes) in return for the withdrawal of Federal troops from occupied regions of the South.
Daniel E. Sutherland deals with John Inman and dozens of others born in the South in an intriguing new book called "The Confederate Carpetbaggers." Published by LSU Press, the 360-page volume is available in both hardcover and paperback editions at $40 and $16.95, respectively.
John Inman, who may literally have taken all his possessions in a carpetbag when he went from Atlanta to New York, accumulated one of the great fortunes of the postwar era. He invested an estimated $100 million gained from his New York business firms in the stricken South. Mr. Inman bought or financed banks, railroads, insurance firms, coal mines, iron foundries and, above all, cotton.
He almost certainly pulled the strings that led Henry W. Grady's New York City speaking engagement at which the editor delivered his eloquent address on "The New South."
In 1891, Mr. Inman brought to Atlanta in his plush private railroad car the famous financier Jay Gould. Mr. Gould was only one of many investors from the North who were persuaded by Mr. Inman to put money into the South.