John White. Lester Flatt. Benny Martin. Daniel Haston. There are just some names that you can’t talk about White County’s heritage without mentioning, and the Daniel Haston family is working to ensure that his contributions to the Middle Tennessee towns of Sparta and Spencer are remembered for generations to come.
Daniel Haston, born Daniel Hiestand, was a first-generation American, having been born to German immigrants who sought religious freedom in the United States. While Haston was born in Virginia, he moved to Tennessee, in 1803, before White County was even an actual county. In fact, Haston was among those who signed the petition requesting White County be recognized as an official county of the state of Tennessee.
Haston’s descendants have been connected to many towns, schools, local governments, and businesses throughout White and Van Buren counties, and now the family is planning to reconnect many of the members who have moved across the country with those who are still “home.”
The “Heritage of Daniel Haston Days” event, which will take place on July 22 and July 23, will include meet and greets, a chance to share old family photographs or make new ones, a place to share artifacts and family heirlooms, a time to honor the military veterans in the family, access to computers for family-tree tracing, group trips to the White County and Van Buren County museums, and – of course – food!
The event will also have a tour of what the family is calling “Historic Haston Sites” around White and Van Buren Counties.
Wayne Haston, one of Daniel’s descendants, has written a book titled “The Story of the Daniel Haston Family,” which will be released during the event.
“In this book, I want to tell a story—a historically true story about our Haston family roots in Europe, beginning near the end of the Middle Ages,” Wayne Haston said. “The story will continue as I describe some of the dreadful experiences they were forced to endure in Europe because of their evangelical Christian faith and how our immigrant ancestor (earliest-to-America ancestor) got to America. But the most extensive part of the story will focus on how our American forefathers moved from Pennsylvania to Virginia, from Virginia to Tennessee and Kentucky, and from there, all across the United States.
The “Heritage of Daniel Haston Days” is the first such gathering of the family in over 200 years. And, according to Wayne Haston, there are descendants coming from at least 12 other states to join in on the festivities.
“Seems like you have everything covered, for the older ones to reminisce and then for the younger ones to find out about their ancestors,” Ruth Haston Spakes, who is planning to attend, commented on Wayne’s blog, describing the upcoming event. “Can’t wait.”
To learn more about the “Heritage of Daniel Haston Days” or to read an excerpt of the book “The Story of the Daniel Haston Family,” or to reserve a spot at the event, visit danielhaston.blog
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