Southern Anthology

Families on the Frontiers of the Old South

Amanda J Askew

Female 1811 - Bef 1880  (~ 68 years)


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  • Name Amanda J Askew 
    Born ca. 1811  Hancock County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Gender Female 
    Probate 17 Nov 1828  Hancock County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Appraisal of James M. Askew estate. 
    Minutes of the Court of Ordinary
    Minutes of the Court of Ordinary
    Hancock County, Georgia, Minute Book (1817-1838), p. 592 (FamilySearch image 331)
    Civil 10 Sep 1832  Hancock County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Custody of Matha Ann Battle 
    • And now the time has come when Mr. Stephens thinks he must have a horse of his own. Besides the Ellington papers, he has another set to adjust, and these require more locomotion than he can perform on foot. With caution and many misgivings he sets about this momentous purchase.

      "September 10th- This day I was employed by Mr. Hilsman with the conditional fee of twenty dollars. But of all my business, the most important was the purchase of a horse. What will be the result of my first trade I can not tell."

      He made a mistake in setting down the purchase of the horse as the most important business of that day. The visit of James Hilsman was much more important, as it proved. The matter at issue was this:

      Uriah Battle, a son of Isaac Battle, who lived near Powelton, but upon the Taliaferro side of the creek, had married Amanda Askew, of Hancock. To this marriage a daughter was born, and shortly afterwards the husband died, leaving a young widow and infant child. The elder Battle afterwards took out letters of guardianship of the person and property of the child. Some time after this the widow married James Hilsman, a man of intemperate habits, and highly objectionable to Mr. Battle, who claimed possession of the child by virtue of the letters of guardianship. The widow would not give it up; so the grandfather employed a man to get possession of the child by stratagem. The man called at the house, talked with the child and petted it, and at last, taking it in his arms, hurried off at full speed, pursued by the shrieking mother, and delivered it to the custody of the grandfather. It was then determined to appeal to the law, and the business referred to above was the employment of Mr. Stephens to take a course to secure to the mother the restoration and custody of her child. He therefore commenced proceedings in the Court of Ordinary, by taking a rule nisi, requiring Mr. Battle to show cause at the next term of court why his letters of guardianship as to the person of the child should not be revoked,on grounds set forth in the rule.

      This case excited an astonishing amount of interest in both Taliaferro and Hancock Counties. The Battles were numerous and influential, and the greater part of the community, who knew the facts and circumstances, sympathized with them. On the day of trial, at the next term of court, men, women, and children assembled, some even from Greene, Warren, and Wilkes Counties. The young lawyer had thoroughly prepared himself upon all the nice and intricate legal questions on which he knew the case would turn. To familiarize himself with the evidence, and to try the various modes of presentation, he argued the case overand over, in divers forms of argumentation, and in free and passionate declamation in the solitude of a lonely hill-side.

      The day and hour came. Court-house and court-yard were filled with hearers. Nine-tenths of them, though they knewJeffries, the counsel for the Battles, well, had never seen Stephens. When he arose, trembling and pale, there was a deep silence. After a brief exordium, he warmed with his subject. and addressing himself to the feelings of the court (consisting of five judges), burst into a strain of passionate eloquence that none of those present, save perhaps Jef1ries and the Battles, could withstand. The picture he drew of the bereft mother was one which made every one forget that she had married Mr. James Hilsman, and was not now a poor widow robbed by death of the husband of her youth, and of the only pledge of their love by an enemy yet more cruel. In pleading fbr her child his eyes glittered and his voice quivered with the passion of a score of mothers. He planted himself upon the great law of nature that overrides all human statutes, or upon which all human statutes must rest. In vain had abundant testimony been advanced from the old burghers of Powelton that the child would be better cared for by the grandfather than by the mother in her new relation. All this was consumed in the fire of that eloquence, pleading for the sacred right of maternity. Men, women, and children wept ; many sobbed aloud. The five judges tried to preserve the balance of their official dignity, but they could not resist the contagious emotion, and tears were seen rolling down their cheeks, and when the argument was finished, their spokesman, with faltering voice, pronounced judgment in favor of the mother.

      The Battles gave it up ; and the next day, at Powelton, Dr. Cullen Battle, a cousin of the grandfather, said, laughingly, "When that little fellow began to argue that even among the beasts of the forest the mother was, by the great law of nature, the keeper of her ofispring, and would fight even to the death for their custody, and all the judges fell to crying, I knew that Isaac would have to give up Martha Ann!" No speech of any young lawyer ever added more to his reputation than did this of Mr. Stephens. Indeed, it created his reputation. He had hitherto been regarded by the multitude with indifference, and by a few, who had been the friends of his father, with compassion. But to-day, in the presence of all this multitude he had shown himself not only more than the peer of any lawyer in the county, but as destined to take rank with the first orators in the State. [2]
    Hon. Alexander Hamilton Stephens (1812-1883)
    Hon. Alexander Hamilton Stephens (1812-1883)
    Residence 1850  Pike County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Residence 1860  Hickory Grove, Crawford, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  [3
    Hammacks District 
    Residence 1870  Fayette County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  [4
    Died Bef 1880 
    Person ID I0730  Dickinson
    Last Modified 7 Aug 2018 

    Father James M Askew,   b. 1765, Edgecombe County, North Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Oct 1827, Hancock County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 62 years) 
    Relationship Birth 
    Mother Elizabeth Connell,   b. 1782, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1857, Hancock County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 75 years) 
    Relationship Birth 
    Family ID F0231  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 Uriah Battle,   d. Bef. 29 Jul 1832, Hancock County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Married 7 Aug 1828  Hancock County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
    +1. Martha Ann Battle,   b. 1829, Taliaferro County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 13 Jul 1869, Atlanta, Fulton, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 40 years)  [Birth]
    Last Modified 30 Mar 2018 
    Family ID F0233  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 2 James Hilsman,   b. 14 Nov 1805, Hancock County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 14 Dec 1854  (Age 49 years) 
    Married 29 Jul 1832  Hancock County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
    +1. Irene Hilsman,   b. 12 Jun 1833, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 16 Mar 1890, East Point, Fulton, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 56 years)  [Birth]
    +2. Araminta Hilsman,   b. Nov 1837, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 12 Jun 1934, Oglethorpe County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 96 years)  [Birth]
    +3. Mariah Anna Hilsman,   b. 7 Mar 1838, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 29 Jan 1914, Marshall County, Alabama Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 75 years)  [Birth]
     4. Jeremiah L Hilsman,   b. Abt 1842, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location
    +5. Amanda J Hilsman,   b. Sep 1841, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  [Birth]
    +6. Joseph W Hilsman,   b. ca. 1844, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 27 Jan 1919, Fulton County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 75 years)  [Birth]
    +7. Lucy Hilsman,   b. 16 Sep 1847, Pike County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 8 Nov 1925, Fayette County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 78 years)  [Birth]
     8. Ella G Hilsman,   b. 1 Jan 1849, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 18 Oct 1922, Atlanta, Fulton, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 73 years)  [Birth]
     9. A W J Hilsman,   b. 1 Jan 1849, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Bef. 1860, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 10 years)  [Birth]
    +10. Jeffrey Hilsman,   b. 14 Mar 1850, Greene County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 5 Feb 1905  (Age 54 years)  [Birth]
    +11. John James Hilsman,   b. ca. 1857, Greene County, Georgia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Oct 1938, Birmingham, Jefferson, Alabama Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 81 years)  [Birth]
    Last Modified 4 Oct 2016 
    Family ID F0237  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - ca. 1811 - Hancock County, Georgia Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 7 Aug 1828 - Hancock County, Georgia Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsProbate - Appraisal of James M. Askew estate. - 17 Nov 1828 - Hancock County, Georgia Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 29 Jul 1832 - Hancock County, Georgia Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsCivil - Custody of Matha Ann Battle - 10 Sep 1832 - Hancock County, Georgia Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - 1850 - Pike County, Georgia Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - Hammacks District - 1860 - Hickory Grove, Crawford, Georgia Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - 1870 - Fayette County, Georgia Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Sources 
    1. [S007856] 1850 United States Census, Bureau of the Census, (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1850), Census Place: District 68, Pike, Georgia; Roll M432_80; Page: 222; Image: 451.

    2. [S497] Life of Alexander H. Stephens, Richard Malcolm Johnston, William Hand Browne, (Philadelphia: Lippincott, 1883), 95-7 [online at https://archive.org/details/lifeofalexanderh01john].

    3. [S014287] 1860 United States Census, Bureau of the Census, (Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1860), Census Place: Hammacks District, Crawford, Georgia; Roll M653_118; Page: 943; Image: 396.
      Name: Amanda Hillsman
      Age: 48
      Birth Year: abt 1812
      Gender: Female
      Birth Place: Georgia
      Home in 1860: Hammacks District, Crawford, Georgia
      Post Office: Hickory Grove
      Family Number: 545

      Amanda Hillsman 48
      Jeremiah Hillsman 19
      Amanda Hillsman 16
      Josiah Hillsman 14
      Lucy Hillsman 12
      Ella Hillsman 10
      Jeffrey Hillsman 8
      James Hillsman 5

    4. [S013899] 1870 United States Census, Bureau of the Census, (Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1870), Census Place: Fayette, Georgia; Roll M593_149; Page: 85; Image: 171.
      Name: Amanda Hilsman
      Age in 1870: 60
      Birth Year: abt 1810
      Birthplace: Georgia
      Home in 1870: Fayette, Georgia
      Race: White
      Gender: Female
      Post Office: Fayetteville

      Amanda Hilsman 60
      Ella Hilsman 19
      Jeffrey Hilsman 17
      James Hilsman 13