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John E. Coffee was born in Prince Edward County, Virginia in 1782 to He was a grandson of Peter Coffee, Sr. (1716 - November 1771) and Susannah Mathews (1701-1796). He is sometimes confused by researchers with his first cousin John Coffee, who served as a general in the Tennessee militia.
John E. Coffee was eighteen when he moved with his family to Hancock County, Georgia, in 1800. His parents developed a cotton plantation near Powelton, based on the labor of enslaved African Americans.
In 1807, the younger Coffee settled in Telfair County, Georgia, where he developed his own plantation.
As a general in the Georgia state militia, Coffee supervised construction in the 1820s of a supply road through the state of Georgia. It was called "Coffee Road" and enabled the transportation of munitions to the Florida Territory to fight the Indians during the Creek Wars. It is now called the "Old Coffee Road".
John Coffee served as a member of the Georgia Senate from 1819 to 1827. He was elected as a Jacksonian Democrat to the Twenty-third and Twenty-fourth U.S. Congresses and served from March 4, 1833, until his death on September 25, 1836. He was re-elected to the Twenty-fifth United States Congress on October 3, 1836, after his death, the news of his death not having been received.
|U.S. House of Representatives|
| Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Georgia's at-large congressional district
March 4, 1833 - September 25, 1836
William Crosby Dawson
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