In Goodspeed’s History of Tennessee, Washington County, published in 1887, there is a biography of Allen Gillespie’s son, R. L. Gillespie. R. L. Gillespie was a farmer who lived in the 2nd Civil District of Washington County, Tennessee. R. L. Gillespie was born in Greene County, Tennessee, 27 June 1831, son of Col. Allen and Sarah (Sims) Gillespie. R. L. Gillespie said his father was born in Pennsylvania about 1765 and was the son of George Gillespie, a native of Ireland. He said his father was an early settler of East Tennessee and was a soldier in the War of 1812, and his father was a Revolutionary soldier. The mother of the subject was born in Pennsylvania, daughter of William Sims, a native of Ireland. She was the mother of six sons and six daughters and R. L. was the youngest. The subject was reared on a farm and educated at Washington College and Tusculum College. He had been a trader and was now a farmer. R. L. Gillespie married in 1859 to Maria Brown, daughter of Enoch Brown of Jonesboro, Tennessee. They had ten children, two sons and five daughters are living. They are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church South.
In the Goodspeed’s biography, R. L. Gillespie said his parents were born in Pennsylvania, although his father was born in Hagerstown, Maryland, and his mother was born in Hanover County, Virginia. He said George Gillespie and William Sims were born in Ireland, although William Sims was born in Hanover County, Virginia.
In 1850 in Greene County, Tennessee, five of the children of Allen and Sarah Sims Gillespie lived together, and their brother lived next door. Allen H. Gillespie, Thomas Gillespie, Robert Gillespie, Elizabeth Crawford, and Mary Gillespie lived together. Their brother, George F. Gillespie, lived next door.
The Gillespies lived in the same neighborhood as their McAllister cousins in Washington County, Tennessee.