Letter No. 1

from Holder Hudgins to Miss Mary D. Hudgins
c. 1952

This is a letter that my Grandfather had found. I scanned it using OCR. I left the grammar and spelling as it was in the letter so as to not change any of the original meaning or content. If you would like a scanned copy of this letter, let me know.


This was typed from a typed copy. I have not been able to connect our family with this line but feel there are possibilities, so am going to pass it on (ECS 1965)

295 Fifth
New York, New York

Holder Hudgins, Pres.
(Houlder, changed in typing?) (date would be 1952)

Miss Mary D. Hudgins
457 South Border
Hot Springs, Arkansas

Dear Miss Hudgins:

It was interesting and pleasant to get your nice letter telling me of your branch of the Hudgins' family. I can imagine how you felt when you opened the Manhatten telephone directory and found the name Holder Hudgins in it. Incidentally, I have no initial.

The combination of the name Houlder and Hudgins originated in the marriage of MARY ANN HOULDER and WILLIAM HUDGINS at Lancastershire in 1737. They bad four sons, the first of whom was named Houlder Hudgins, who was born in 1738 in Lancastershire.

WILLIAM HUDGINS was a ship builder and merchant. In 1740 he made a trip to the New Continent as a result of which he received a grant of land in Kingston Parish, GLOUCESTER COUNTY, Dominion of Virginia, where ultimately he settled.

Houlder Hudgins was educated in England where he lived with his grandfather, ROBERT HUDGINS, while his father established a shipyard in Virginia. HOULDER Hudgins was educated and graduated from Christ College at Bristol, England, in 1760, thereafter be entered the shipbuilding business, became an officer in the English Navy with the ultimate rank of Captain; resigned in 1774 to join his father in Virginia, settling at Clinton Manor in Gloucester County. He entered business as a ship builder and chandler with two yards, one on the James River and one on Planketank River. He also operated a plantation and delt in the purchase and sale of slaves.

HOULDER HUDGINS married four times and had a great many children. Nearly all his sons by his various wives named their second born son, Houlder. His first wife was named MARY HUNKEY, whose first son was named Houlder Hudgins, and he was my great-great grandfather. He was also married to MARY GUYN, (whose sister was mother of Commodore Vanderbildt) and MARY ANDERSON AND HARRIET WHITTING.

From this point on the Hudgins' history to date the branches go out indefinitely' The GEORGIA branch is, in part, descended from LEWIS HUDGINS, who was a son of the original Houlder Hudgins and from THOMAS JEFFERSON HUDGINS, son of the second Houlder Hudgins, by MARY GUYN, who originally went to Georgia as representative in the sale of slaves and in procuring lumber for building ships. They opened a shipyard at Savannah, which is still there.

I have met many namesakes. At Washington D.C., during the War, I was best man for Captain Houlder Hudgins at Richmond, Virginia, who was in the army and the head usher was Commander Houlder Hudgins, from New Orleans, who was in the navy.

It is unusual to find the name Hudgins north of Baltimore, but my father came up here shortly after the Civil War when he became a newspaper reporter and later editor of the New York Herald. I say it is unusual to find the name Hudgins in New York, and also that they are greatly outnumbered by the Levys and the Cohens. It made me very happy to see that in the telephone book of Atlanta, Ga., there were more Hudgins than Cohens and Levys. However, I am a displaced person who works in New York and lives, of all places in Connecticut. I have not, though, forgotten the South nor the multitude of kinfolk, including innumerable Houlder Hudgins, that are down there My gr2etings to you and all the rest of your family.

Very truly yours,


s/Houlder Hudgins

NOTE: Remember our Beverly Hudgins ran away from home. He told the census taker in 1820 that he was born in Va.

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