Submitted by Jack Moore
CANTERBURY FAMILY IN BIBB COUNTY
The Canterbury family, led by brothers Zachariah Canterbury and John Canterbury, were among the first white settlers in what is present day Bibb County, Alabama. Zachariah Canterbury, who was born on January 1, 1773, in Virginia, moved his family to Madison County, Mississippi Territory in late 1811 or early 1812. He is listed in the 1812 applications for land grants for Madison County filed with the Nashville Land Office. He and John appear in the "1816 Census of Heads of Families in Madison County, Mississippi Territory." The Canterbury's were farmers and had tracts of land throughout the county.
John Canterbury, a Revolutionary War pensioner, was named a Beat Captain in the Cahaba (Bibb) County Militia. In February of 1818, John Canterbury was appointed chief justice of the Cahaba County Court. The first session of the court was held on May 28, 1818, in the hastily-constructed court house at Cahaba Falls. There were two other sessions of the court held in August and November. During the August 1818 session, two of the persons listed in the jury panel were John's brother, Zachariah, and Zachariah's son, Samuel Canterbury.
Zachariah Canterbury's wife Sarah, born in Virginia on January 19, 1775. She and Zachariah had eight children. Five were born in Tennessee, the rest in Alabama. Sarah Canterbury died on September 14, 1851. Zachariah Canterbury died on September 11, 1852. Both are believed to be buried in the Hill-Oldham Cemetery.
Zachariah Canterbury's oldest son, Shadrack E. Canterbury, was born in Tennessee on June 1, 1796. He owned a farm on land south of present-day Lowerytown. Married twice, Shadrack fathered 10 children, all of whom were born in BibbCounty. One child, Jasper, either died in childbirth or at an early age. Shadrack died on May 28, 1883. His wife Sarah Elizabeth Canterbury died on February 4, 1889. He and his wife are buried in the Canterbury Family Cemetery next to the road leading to Jones Lake south of Lowerytown.
Four of Shadrack Canterbury's sons, Zachariah Clinton, James Monroe, Isaac Monroe and Samuel Jackson, moved to Tuscaloosa County in the late 1850s and started their own farms. The four youngest sons, Thomas E., Newton, Obadiah Polk and Lorenzo Dow, and daughter Sarah, remained with Shadrack and Sarah in Bibb County.