​Lonesome Historic Site


2006 TN-96  •  Burns, TN 37029  •  206-953-2766

Copyright © Lonesome Historic Site. All rights reserved.

Delilah (Dicy) Horner Austin

​(December 23, 1800  - June 7, 1884)

My name is Delilah Horner Austin, but family and friends called me Dicy. I was born on Dec. 23, 1800 in Orange County, North Carolina. I was the oldest child of George and Elizabeth Horner. When I was a little girl (just five or six years old), my parents decided that we should move west to the newly formed state of Tennessee. They heard there was great farm land there, so we packed up and made the long  trip across the mountains. Some of our friends and neighbors made the trip with us. We settled right here in Dickson County, and this is where I grew up, along with my brother and two sisters. Back in those days, it was very important that pioneer girls learn to make the things their family needed. So I spent much of my time as a young girl learning to cook, make soap, spin and weave to make clothes and blankets. I became well-known in our pioneer community for my sewing and weaving skills. In 1819 I married our neighbor and family friend, Will Austin. Not long after Will and I married, we moved into our newly built cabin, Lonesome. Over the years, we had 12 children, and at one time owned about 800 acres of land right here along Beaver Dam Creek. My husband, Will, had bravely served  in the War of 1812 under General Andrew Jackson, and was given land by the State of Tennessee for his service. However, life wasn’t easy for a pioneer family. In 1855, three of our daughters died of typhoid fever. Back then there were no doctors or hospitals close to us, and we didn’t have the medicine you have today. I lived a long and adventurous life here at Lonesome. I died June 7, 1884, at the age of 83.