John W. Thomas was always confident, a make-it-happen type of guy. He had to be. John grew up fast when his father died in 1810 when John was ten. By the age 17, he moved to Davidson County to mine for precious metals.
After marrying, he became a community fixture, even serving in the state legislature. He played a major role in building the railroad from Goldsboro to Charlotte via Greensboro.
He built a railroad depot, a general store and a gristmill. His son built a hotel. It was soon called Thomas Depot. Today we call it Thomasville.