Monday, January 13, 2014

52 Ancestors: #2 Samantha Angeline Petty

On the day Samantha Angeline Petty married Thomas Leander Hankins in Hopkins County, Kentucky, J. E. Day was appointed as her guardian. My best guess is that she needed someone to give consent for her to marry at 18 years old (although there is no record of such consent in the Hopkins County records).

The surety for Lee and Samantha's marriage bond was John Day. The same person? Probably. Maybe. I don't know yet.

I've often wondered where Samantha lived between the time her mother, Margaret Thomas Petty, died on 28 Jul 1876 and her marriage almost three years later on 14 May 1879. It's unclear exactly when Samantha's father, John R. Petty, left Hopkins County but he remarried in Whitfield County, Georgia on 26 Apr 1878 so he was long gone by Samantha's wedding day. There is no indication that he took any of his nine children with him to Georgia. The six younger children were all in Forsyth County, Georgia by 1880, five living with Margaret's sister, Mary Thomas Echols, and one with an unrelated family.

It appears that Samantha and her older brother, Henry Milton, remained in Hopkins County when their father left for Georgia. At least, she was there in 1879 to get married and spent the rest of her life there. Milt was in there in 1880, listed as an inmate of the Poor House in the census. The Hopkins County Clerk has Poor House records but the earliest ones available are a couple of years after Milt died in 1893.

Just who was J. E. Day? Was he a relative? Did Samantha live with him? Had she been in his care since her father left Hopkins County soon after (or even before) her mother died in 1876? Was he a Hankins family friend? Was he just someone hanging around the courthouse that day who did her a favor?

I can't answer any of those questions today but I've started researching J. E. and John Days from Hopkins County. Yes, of course, there was more than one. I plan to document that research here as it progresses. Stay tuned.  

Written for 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge at No Story Too Small

Samantha was my great-grandmother through her daughter (my paternal grandmother), Verda Waller Hankins. 

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