Excerpts from the Diary of Hardy Vickers Wooten
Contributed by Kathy Wilson, firstname.lastname@example.org
Credits and discussion appear below the following excerpts.
Wooten and Related Families Association Quarterly Volume V, Number 1, March 1985
HARDY VICKERS WOOTEN: HIS DIARY AND HIS ANCESTRY
Our long-time Associate Judge Sam Taylor of
Judge Taylor has sent us substantial excerpts from the Diary, both in Hardy’s original handwriting and in typed transcription,
and the Alabama Department of Archives and History has kindly granted us
permission to reproduce these excerpts in our Quarterly. Readers wishing
to examine the complete Diary may do so at the Department’s
We begin with a transcription of the first four pages of the first four pages of the Diary, and also reproduce the original first page, showing Hardy’s excellent handwriting and his obvious intention to give an orderly account of his life. In fact, these early pages read more like an autobiography than a mere diary.
of H. V. Wooten
I was born on the 15th of December A. D. 1813, in the
My mother’s name was Jerusha
Vickers. She was the daughter of John Vickers, a revolutionary whig, who after the war emigrated
[PAGE 9 - Reproduction of page 1 of the manuscript]
[EDITOR’S NOTE: On Hardy’s page two, the following has been written sideways in the margin, apparently NOT in Hardy’s handwriting.]
John Vickers raised a Company during the Revolutionary War, of which he became Captain and fought through the war.
[Hardy’s handwriting resumes. ED]
My father and mother were married about the year 1803, and had three
children, before it came my unhappy time to enter the world. The names of
these three were, Martha, Cynthia and Elizabeth. Cynthia died an infant,
of the others I may speak hereafter. The time of my birth has been
mentioned. It was in the south side of
It will be perceived, that I had an uncle on each side named HARDY, so I being the first son of my parents, it is but natural that I should be named HARDY VICKERS WOOTEN.
My infancy, as tradition tells, was principally, noted for crying - the length of time I remained at the breast - and what my parents thought to be extraordinary intellect. In proof of these traits in my early character, I am told that I have cried myself to fainting, that I remained at the breast nearly 3 years, BEFORE WHICH TIME I COULD “SPELL IN TWO LETTERS.”
In 1816 I had a brother born, who, for his father, was named
Eli. It was I believe in the early part of this year that my Grandparents
Vickers died, their deaths being not far distant from each other. In
1817, my parents moved to another place further out from the
In 1818, my father bought a tract of Land on the road from
[At this point, we skip to pages 9-10. ED.]
No other memorable event in my history occurred during that year.
This year was rendered memorable by the death of my FATHER. He was
3 weeks with pleurisy, and died on the 28th January. . . .[clinical description of his condition. ED] By the time of his death, my father had procured a comfortable competence for the support of his family, being however, somewhat in debt it took some time struggling to pay off without parting with any of the estate, which was eventually done. My father left his estate to my mother during her life or widowhood, and she by extraordinary management & industry, kept it all together until her death, paying off the debts my father left unsettled, by the proceeds of the estate. My father died, as I learn from unimpeachable sources, without an enemy on earth. On the 9th of March I had another brother born, who was named James David, for his Uncle on each side. He was blest with health and grew up. My mother superintended her farm herself this year and saved a good crop.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
The foregoing excerpts contain most of Hardy’s statements concerning his own parentage and relatives.
From the Diary and other records, we now summarize the main events of Hardy’s life.
1822-He refers in the Diary to his principle playmates. . . cousins Joel Wooten and James V. Jones. Note that this Joel Wooten was son of Hardy’s uncle Hardy Wooten.
Hardy V. then attended the
Following his graduation, he moved to Lowndesboro
He married Charlotte Rochelle 24 Jan 1841 in Lowndesboro. Of their five children, only one survived to have issue, the third child Ella, reported to have married Joseph Mark Howard. The other children, all died early, were Garvin, Rochelle, Ida, and Zoe.
In 1851, Hardy accepted a teaching position at the
We should note that some of the data given above are from a biographic
sketch of Hardy in Thomas McAdory Owen, HISTORY OF
ALABAMA AND DICTIONARY OF ALABAMA BIOGRAPHY, Vol. IV pp 1807-1808. This
is an old work reprinted 1978 in
For example, Owen gives Hardy’s mother
as Ruth Vickers, while Hardy himself says her name was JERUSHA.
THE WOOTEN ANCESTRY OF HARDY V. WOOTEN
On the basis of Hardy’s statements in
the first four pages of his Diary, there can be no doubt as to his Wooten
ancestry. He is a descendant of Thomas and Jane Watton
This Thomas acquired land in
It was the son William, born after 1710, who married Ann (probably Bryant) and moved south to North Carolina, where we find records of him in Northampton County by 1743, in Johnston County 1750-1755, and then for good in Edgecombe County in 1756.
All statements made above are fully documented by records presented in
our Special Study No. I, THE WOOTTONS OF ISLE OF
William and his wife Ann had only four sons who have been reliably documented: Amos, James, Joel, and Joshua. William’s deed of gift of 513 acres to his son Amos is in Edgecombe DB E p 255, made 13 Jan 1783. A similar deed to his son Joel for 40 acres is in Edgecombe DB 6 p 430, made 26 Feb 1791.
On 19 Jan 1797, Amos’ sons Eli and Hardy Wootten
witness a deed from James Wootten to Joel Wootten for 150 acres (Edgecombe DB 8 p 665). The
same day, Joel deeds 225 acres to Edward Cobb (DB 8 p 701). These are Joel’s last transactions in Edgecombe; he next turns u in
Eli Wootten, however, is still found in
Edgecombe 8 Jan 1799, when he witnesses a deed from Hardy Norville
to Keton Everette involving
land adjoining and formerly belonging to Amos Wooten (Edgecombe DB 10 p
73). At this point, Eli too disappears from Edgecombe to surface in
This certainly suggests that Eli, Hardy, and their Uncle Joel planned
this move to
Eli and Hardy are both shown as residing in
In the Second Georgia Land Lottery, drawings in 1807, Hardy, residing
in Burke, won 202 ½ acres in
Meanwhile, back in
The heirs therefore, in February 1813, petitioned the
The Court duly appointed Commissioners as requested, and the division was made 23 Nov 1813, as entered in Edgecombe Deed Book 15 p 37. A total of 1153 acres on both sides of Autrey’s Creek (now Otter) was accordingly divided among the 13 heirs, with Lot no. 3 being 81 acres to Ely Wooten, and Lot no. 10 of 86 acres to Hardy Woooten (here erroneously entered as “Henry”).
Both Eli and Hardy apparently made the long trip from
[PAGE 14 - Reproduction of Petition of Heirs of Amos Woootten]
Lee same date (DB 15 p 208). The previous day, 31 March 1815, Hardy sold his portion to his brother Stephen Wootten (DB 15 p 232).
Amos’ widow Priscilla died before 6 March 1815, when her son Stephen was appointed to administer her estate. The sale of her property brought in money which on 11 April 1817 was divided equally among the 13 heirs: William Wootten, Absalom Wootten, Hardy Wootten, Eli Wootten, Jesse Wootten, Stephen Wootten, Ephraim Wootten, Amos Wootten, David Wootten, Ann Edwards, Winney Cobb, Eliza Edwards, and Milley Corbitt.
It appears Eli and Hardy received their shares of this money by giving
their powers of attorney, since we find no record of their making another trip
Eli’s brother Hardy also died before 1820
(around 1817 according to the Diary), and we find their deaths reflected in the
1820 Census for
On page 32, 11th on page, is JERUSA WOOTON, with males 3 under 10, and females 3 under 10, 1 10-16, 1 16-26, and 1 over 45 (herself), with 10 slaves. Matching this household to Hardy V’s account, we can identify the three boys under 10 as James David b. 9 March 1819, Eli b. 1816, and Hardy V. himself b. 1813. According to Hardy V’s account, the two girls older than Hardy are Martha and Elizabeth, who married John and Simeon Lodge. We are not yet able to identify his younger sisters.
On page 33, 3rd on page, is MOURNIN WOOTON, with males 1 under 10, and females 1 under 10, 2 10-16, 2 16-26, and 1 over 45 (herself), with 13 slaves.
As there are no other Wootons in Burke, there seems no doubt that Mournin is widow of Hardy Wooten, brother of Eli and son of Amos. The one male under 10 in Mournin’s household consequently must be the favorite playmate described by Hardy V. as his cousin Joel. We have not yet found the names of the 5 younger females in Mournin’s household.
We have already learned from Hardy V’s own
words how he grew up, studied medicine, and moved to
We shall interject here the results of the 3rd Georgia Land Lottery,
the drawing taking place in
In Burke County, we find winning 250 acres in
Orphans”. These are obviously the four children of Jerusha Wooten as identified above in the 1820 Census. Remember that at that time, children were described as orphans if their father died, even if their mother was still alive.
There is another Wooten winner residing in
The 4th Georgia Land Lottery, drawn in 1821, again shows a Wootten winner residing in Burke. This time, it is Juresa Wootten, obviously Jerusha, whoo wins 202 ½ acres in
The Wooten luck continues in the 5th Georgia Land Lottery, where
Mourning Wooten widow residing in Burke wins 202 ½ acres in
We should point out that a considerable proportion of the winners in these lotteries never occupied their prize lands, but instead sold their claims to land speculators.
In 1830, both Jerusa nd
Mourning are still close together, in fact shown as adjoining, in
JERUSA WOOTTEN, 10th on page, with males 2 10-15, females 1 40-50 (herself), 5 slaves. From Hardy V’s statements, it appears that the 2 males are Hardy himself and his brother James David who was “blest” with good health. The brother Eli has apparently died, or is living elsewhere. The older sisters have married and left home; the younger ones probably died, since Hardy describes the family as being generally sickly.
MOURNING WOOTTEN, 11th on page, with males 1 15-20, 1 70-80; females 1 15-20, 1 20-30, 1 40-50, 16 slaves. The one son is still obviously Joel, the old man may be Mourning’s father. Note the discrepancy in Mourning’s age, which is off her 1820 age by at least 5 years.
This brings us to the point where Hardy V. was attending the high school in
Legal disputes, involving the Cherokee Indians, the US Supreme Court,
and the State of
By 1840, we find both Hardy V and his playmate Joel have left home. In Lowndes County Alabama (Roll 6 p 220), we find H. V. WOOTON 3rd on page, with a one-man household of himself age 20-30.
In Meriwether County GA, (Roll 46 p 111) we find JOEL WOOTEN, with males 1 under 5, 1 20-30 (himself); females 1 under 5, 1 20-30.
At this point, we can identify all members of Joel’s
household. Joel himself was born 31 Aug 1811 in
We have already noted that Hardy V. married Charlotte Rochell 24 Jan 1841 in Lowndesboro
H. V. WOOTON 36 Physician real value 8000 born SC [!]
This SC is obviously erroneous, since Hardy states in the very first line of his Diary that he was born in Burke County GA.
CHARLOTTE R. WOOTON 26 b. SC
Elizabeth Rochell 51 b. SC (apparently Charlotte’s mother)
Thomas W. Rochell 18 medical student, b. ALA
Gavin Wooton 8, Rochell Wooton 6, Ellen Wooton 4, Ida Wooton 3, Zoe Wooton 1, all these born Alabama.
This completes our census history of Hardy V. Wooton, who died in 1856.
Hardy’s cousin Joel is still in Meriwether
County GA in 1850 (Roll 77 p 316), as follows, all born GA.
JOEL WOOTEN 37 farmer
N. H. “ 33 (Nancy Hurlie Wooten)
F. M. “ 12 (Frances Morning Wooten)
E. J. “ 8 (Emily Jane Wooten)
Wm A. J. “ 6 (William Augustus Joel Wooten)
N. H. “ 3 (Nancy Hurlie Wooten)
Note that Joel’s first son Thomas Hardy Wooten is missing; he is reported to have died in infancy 21 Oct 1841.
Joel’s final census appearance is 1860 in
Hiram (Roberts) Wooten 10 b. GA
Martha Ellen “ 3 b. MS
Alonzo Wooten 2 b. MS
Joel died in Lafayette County 13 Nov 1867.
While we have as yet no known member descended from Hardy Vickers
Wooten, two of our Associates are descendants of his cousin-playmate
Joel. One is Col. Edward D. Wooten of
According to family records gathered by Judge Taylor, three other children of Joel married and had issue: Emily Jane who married Frank Hays, William Augustus Joel who married Georgianna Waldrip and Martha Ellen who married Martin Stewart.
There must consequently be many more descendants of Joel living today. We should be glad to hear from them.
Subject: Hardy Vickers Wooten
Date: Wed, 15 Mar 2000 21:37:02 -0500
From: Kelly and Brenna <email@example.com>
Thought you might find the Vickers information included in the attached article of interest (it's saved in Microsoft Word, but you should be able to open it in any wordprocessing program). I descend from Martha (Patsy) Wooten, sister of Hardy Vickers Wooten. The organization which published this article no longer exists and the publications are only available at certain state libraries and archives. I haven't been able to travel to
Subject: Re: Hardy Vickers Wooten
Date: Tue, 21 Mar 2000 17:22:43 -0600
To: Kelly and Brenna <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Forgot to include the name of the publication where the article on Hardy Vickers Wooten was published. It was:
Wooten and Related Families Association Quarterly Volume V, Number 1, March 1985
The organization has since disbanded and the editor of the publication, Richard C. Wooten (who was also a genealogist) has died. Please let me know when you do your next update on the Vickers page. It is a really nice presentation of research. Keep up the good work.
I can't thank you enough for the diary information you sent to me! This source was completely unknown to me, and advances my own knowledge of my Vickers line by leaps and bounds. I am 99.99% sure my James Vickers b. 1799-1800 was born in Burke Co. and is definitely tied in to the Vickers of Burke Co., Ga, but have not been able to document his daddy which seems likely to be James Vickers, bro. of Hardy and Nathan. As you know, it is difficult to research early Burke Co., as a result of the (oh too typical) burning of the courthouse records.
The one paragraph in particular:
"My mother’s name was Jerusha Vickers. She was the daughter of John Vickers, a revolutionary whig, who after the war emigrated from
Jonathan, Mary, Celia, Elizabeth, Winney, Jerusha, Rachael, & Nancy."
is the first to my knowledge and research to document the brothers and sisters of Hardy and Nathan Vickers (i.e. children of John Vickers). This information will most likely make it possible for many Vickers descendants to document their lines. The Burke Co., GA connection has been the most difficult to piece together. I have been running into brick walls on my line for about 20 years because of the scarcity of Burke Co. records. This may represent a breakthrough we've been waiting for! THANK-YOU!!!
I can document the other playmate of Hardy V. Wooten with the following; James Vickers Jones (b. 1812) was the son of Sarah Vickers who was daughter of James Vickers who was brother to Jerusha, i.e. his first cousin once removed:
History of Screven Co., GA, Group #’s F211,F212.
“Henry Phillip Jones was born in Burke Co., Georgia, on December 27, 1788, the
son of Phillip Jones and Elizabeth (Jones) Jones. He married Sarah Vickers,
daughter of James Vickers of
1. Harriett Jones, born July 1810, married Willis B. May, in 1832.
2. James Vickers Jones, born April 1812, married Mary Elizabeth Hurt, of
3. Melvina Jones, born March 1814, married Dr. Thomas Parsons on August 1, 1838.
4. Joseph Jones, no record.
5. Sarah Ann Jones, born in 1820 and died young.
6. Henry Wilkes Jones, born September 1824, married Martha Ann Aikens on May 2, 1848.
7. William Beeman Jones, born February 27, 1827, married Sidney Ann Elizabeth Sapp on April 5, 1849. (Most of the information in this article is from the records of C.D. Hollingsworth, Sr.).
The info on the Wooten family is really interesting and helps to tie so many things together with the Vickers family.
The reference to grandfather John Vickers emigrating from "
Below is the will of John Vickers (1784) Edgecombe Co., NC. I will assume for the moment that the order in which the the sons are listed is their birth order. The daughters follow the sons and are probably in birth order among the females, but "mixed into" the order of their brothers. I would propose the following order, but open to correction, of course:
1. Abram, b.c. 1736
2. Jacob, b.c. 1738
3. John, b.c. 1740
4. George, b.c. 1742
5. Benjamin, b.c. 1744
6. Martha, b.c. 1746 (m. William Hatcher, 2/21/1765)
7. Raif, b.c. 1748
8. Mary, b.c. 1750 (m. John Morris)
9. Joshua, b.c. 1752
10. Patience, b.c. 1754 (m. a "Stokes")
11. Joseph, b.c. 1756
13. Stephen, b.c. 1760
Of the above children, it is likely that Abram, Jacob, John, Joshua,
I wonder if perhaps a generation got "squashed" as Grandfather
John was actually born in Edgecombe Co., NC and
"his" father John being born in
In addition to having alot of the well-documented info on Nathan and Hardy's line, we can now also tie in Jerusha's sister Rachael's line:
LDS IGI Files list the following info on Rachel Vickers:
Rachel Vickers, b.c. 1775, Burke Co., GA, father is JONATHAN VICKERS
(F515022-0048-1553752) She married Lawrence Armstrong Folsom 1796 in Burke.
(8417107-33-1395803) Lawrence Armstrong Folsom was born about 1775 in Burke Co., GA. His parents, William Folsom and Sally Armstrong were married 1774 in Burke Co., GA.
Children of Lawrence and Rachel Vickers Folsom in Burke Co. are:
William Folsom, b. 1797
Randall Folsom, b. January 1799
John Folsom, b. 1800 or 1801
Rachel Folsom, b. 1804
Elijah Folsom, b. 1804 or 1809
Elizabeth Folsom, b. 1806 or 1810
Maston Folsom, b. 1806 or Sept 14, 1809, or 1811
Cynthia Folsom, b. 1808 in Burke Co or Nov. 8 1815 Pulaski Co. or 1818 in Lowndes Co.
James Folsom, b. May 10, 1812, in Pulaski Co., GA
Well, I am definitely excited about this info that ties together the
brothers and sisters! Thank-you so much! If you don't mind I would
like to post the info on my next update of the Vickers Family Resource
Page. I will put your name and email address as a reference for the file,
unless you would rather I not. Let me know.
Return to John Vickers of Burke Co., GA
Return to Home Page
Kelly G. Vickers, 50 Trembly Bald Drive,
Phone 706-886-0012 Email email@example.com