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 William Donalson Hobdy and Rebecca Ann Hargiss

Contributed by Kathleen Hill

© 2002 

William Donalson Hobdy was born January 4, 1829, in the Fountain Head area of Sumner Co. TN, the youngest son of William Hobdy and Elizabeth (Betsy) Scruggs. He was the grandson of Robert Hobdy and Talitha Cotton, who had arrived in Sumner Co. from North Carolina in 1795. (See Will of Robert Hobdy posted on this site.) Talitha Cotton Hobdy was the sister of Thomas Cotton who founded Cottontown in Sumner Co. Elizabeth Scruggs was the daughter of Drury Scruggs and Elizabeth Tabb.

William Donalson (W. D.) married Rebecca Ann Hargiss in Sumner Co., April 14, 1857. Rebecca was born October 2, 1838 in Tennessee. Her parents are unproven.  (See the records from Rebecca’s family Bible posted on this site.) Note that all birth, marriage and death dates, and the spelling of names used here, are as they appeared in Rebecca’s Bible. W. D. and Rebecca had four sons Willie, Moore Cotton, Thomas, and Fountain E., and three daughters Eliza, Nannie, and Hattie, all born in Sumner Co.

W. D. was not mentioned in the 1857 Sumner Co. Will of his father William Hobdy, nor was he one of the purchasers at the Sale of his father’s Slaves in April 1857. (See Will of William Hobdy posted on this site). In a Deed dated June 2, 1866, W. D. bought out the interests of his brothers, sisters and cousins in some of the land that had been owned by his father. This parcel of land contained 94 acres on the waters of the Sulpher Fork of Drakes Creek. He paid $16.10 per acre for this property. This parcel of land also contained the old two-story brick plantation house built by his father William, as well as the Hobdy Family Cemetery. W. D. was a farmer, and like most of his family, a slave owner until Emancipation.

W. D. died November 5, 1876, at the age of 47. At the time of his death six of his seven children were still unmarried minors. (See Will of W. D. Hobdy posted on this site). W. D. placed a high value on the education of all of his children and left provisions in his Will that all of his minor children be educated. Two of his sons became Physicians and his youngest daughter, Hattie, became a teacher. W. D. left 65 acres of his land to his oldest daughter Eliza Mayes. He left 50 acres, and the "home place", to his wife until her death. After her death these 50 acres and the home place went to his youngest son Fountain. The balance of his land was left to his four surviving children. W. D. appointed his brother, Jerome Bonaparte Hobdy the Executor of his Will.

Rebecca Ann Hobdy survived 32 years in her widowhood. She saw to the higher education of all of her children and lived to see the birth of all of her grandchildren. Rebecca died March 6, 1908.

W. D. and Rebecca are buried in the Hobdy Family Cemetery, about one-mile north of Sengtown, in Sumner Co TN. W. D.’s parents and three of his children are buried with him and Rebecca in this cemetery.

Eliza Hobdy was born February 22, 1858. She married Henry Cornelius Mayes June 27, 1874, in Sumner Co. H. C. Mayes was born June 27, 1874, the son of James Mayes and Nancy Pirkle. Eliza inherited 64 acres of the original Hobdy land after her father’s death, which was then farmed by her husband. Eliza and H. C. had 4 sons and 4 daughters: Violetta (Lettie), Cornelius (Neely), Hugh, Matthew D., Effie F., Elsie, Annie, and Douglas. Eliza died April 8, 1924, and H. C. died March 29, 1931. They are buried together, with their children Matthew and Effie, in the Hobdy Family Cemetery.

Willie (William) Hobdy was born February 22, 1860. Willie became a physician. He married Kora F. Tucker December 25, 1894. Willie was practicing medicine in Kaufman County, TX in 1903, and in Hamilton County, TX in 1911. Willie and Kora had 2 daughters and 1 son. Vera Tucker and William Moore both died in early childhood. (See Obituary of Wm. Moore Hobdy, August 17, 1911, posted on this site) Daughter Fay lived to adulthood and married William Francis Fritz. Dr. Willie Hobdy died February 27, 1926.

Thomas Hobdy was born January 12, 1863. Thomas died on his 5th birthday, January 12, 1868. He is buried with his parents in the Hobdy Family Cemetery.

Moore Cotton Hobdy was born January 25, 1864. M. C. married Ada M. Fowler December 31, 1893, in Sumner Co. Ada was born July 3, 1870, in Sumner Co., the daughter of Henry T. and Patience Fowler. M. C. and Ada had two known daughters, Pauline and Ruth. M. C. died September 25, 1923, and Ada died February 1, 1947. They are buried together in Maple Hill Cemetery, Portland, Sumner Co. TN.

Nannie (Nancy) Hobdy was born September 3, 1866. Nannie married Marcus Bates Perdue February 28, 1886. Bates was born June 24, 1859, in Sumner Co., the son of Marcus W. "Mark" Perdue and Mary Ann Mattox. Nannie and Bates had four daughters: Ada Maude, Willie Belle, Hattie Ann, and Nannie Gertrude. Nannie died, nine years after her marriage to Bates, on December 30, 1895. Bates died January 10, 1921. They are buried together in the Hobdy Family Cemetery.

Fountain E. Hobdy was born December 17, 1871. Fountain became a physician and practiced medicine near Portland in Sumner Co. After his mother’s death, Fountain inherited the land that had been left to her which included the old Hobdy plantation house and the Hobdy family cemetery. He sold it all in 1916. Fountain married Addie G. Sarver December 26, 1894, in Sumner Co. Addie was born in 1873, the daughter of Alfred G. and Mary Sarver. Fountain and Addie had one daughter, Allene, who married Maynard McGuire. Fountian died July 30, 1937, and Addie died in 1958. They, and daughter Allene, are buried at Maple Hill Cemetery in Sumner Co. TN. The family Bible of Rebecca Ann Hargiss Hobdy passed into the possession of the descendants of Dr. Fountain Hobdy.

Hattie (Harriet) Hobdy was born March 26, 1869. Hattie married John Louis Hill May 15, 1892, in Sumner Co. John was the son of Robert G. Hill and Sophia Reddick. At the time of their marriage, John was a Divinity student at the Theological School of Cumberland Presbyterian College in Princeton, KY. John graduated in 1895, and became a teacher at the College. Hattie and John’s two sons, Robert D. and Hugh Bennett, were born in Princeton, KY in 1895 and 1898. By 1900, Hattie and John had separated and they eventually divorced.

Hattie returned to Sumner Co with her sons. Until about 1915, she and her sons lived with John’s parents, Robert and Sophia (Reddick) Hill, in the Rock Bridge area of Sumner Co. Hattie then moved to Nashville and later to Memphis where she taught school. Hattie’s son Robert D. Hill served in the Army during World War I. He was a talented musician and he never married. Hattie and Robert lived together until her death March 19, 1960, in Memphis, TN. Hattie’s son Hugh Bennett Hill was married 4 times and divorced 3 times. He had two sons and a daughter, each by a different marriage. Hugh worked in real estate and lived in Nashville, TN in the 1920’s and 1930’s. During the 1940’s and 1950’s, he lived in Durango, Colorado. He then moved to Fort Lauderdale, Florida where he died in 1971.

After his divorce from Hattie, the Rev. John Hill switched religions and became a minister of the Church of Christ. He moved to New York City and remarried. He died February 17, 1936, in New York City. His body was shipped home for burial in the Hill family plot at Gallatin Cemetery. After Hattie’s death, her body was also brought home to Sumner Co. She was buried next to her ex-husband in the Hill family plot at Gallatin Cemetery.



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