Hays Rodgers Sr was my 4th great grandfather. He was married to Marey Ann Scott and had 14 children: Lewis, James, Allen, Jackson, Susannah, Stephen, William, Mary Ann (my 3rd great grandmother), Timothy, Hays Jr, Wilson, John W, Elizabeth and Martha Jane. His sons, Stephen and William, died in 1834 at the ages of 8 and 10. His son, James, died of typhoid in Nov of 1862. Between 1863 and 1864, his sons, Timothy, Wilson and John W, all died during the Civil War. Timothy and Wilson died of illness. John died of a gunshot wound to the stomach in Jonesboro, GA. Fortunately, Hays Sr was not alive to witness the soldier’s deaths as he died of typhoid in Dec of 1862.
Hays Rodgers Sr was born 1 Feb 1783 in Greene, TN to James Rodgers and Elizabeth “Elly” Hays. He was one of 12 children. At the age of 18, he moved with his parents to Clarke Co, AL to raise hogs. Clarke Co was part of the Mississippi Territory at that time. He and his brother, Absolom, signed up for the Mississippi Militia in 1814, and were assigned to Capt Evan Austill’s company of volunteers in Maj Sam Dale’s Battalion to fight against the hostile Creek Indians. Hays remained in the Militia until Oct 1818, but was only called out once for a two-month tour.
On 11 Dec 1816, he married Marey Ann Scott, who was from Georgia. In 1818, following the end of his military service, he, Marey, and 1st born Lewis, moved to Copiah Co, MS (what later became Simpson, MS). He started buying land and farming. He built the “Ole Stennis House” (see photo) in 1857 at the age of 61. In 1860, the U.S. Census states Hays owned 13 slaves, a 640 acre (square mile) plantation, 2 horses, 3 mules, 10 cows, 4 oxen, 16 sheep, 60 swine, and $600 in farming instruments, for a total worth of $8400.
Upon his death in Dec 1862 in Lauderdale Co, MS, he owned 690 acres of land and stock in the Mobile and Ohio Railroad, which was sold and divided between his heirs. His wife died shortly after him in March of 1863, also of typhoid.
Their property was sold in 1869 at public auction on the steps of the Meridian Courthouse to Major Adam T Stennis, hence the name “Ole Stennis House.” It remained in the Stennis family for 100 years until 1970. A while before the property was sold, Hays Jr, who was the only son to returned home from the war albeit with a useless arm and a wilted spirit, sold his farm and moved to Alabama to be near his wife’s family. He sold his farm to a Tom Stennis. Tom Stennis was a former slave to Major Adam T Stennis.
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Hays Rodgers Sr.
The Ole Stennis House taken April 2012
Hays Rodgers Sr War of 1812 Military Record
1869 Probate Record Transcribed
(witnessed by Mary Ann Rodgers 2nd husband, William Eades Jolly)
Probate court of Lauderdale County, MS Oct term 26th day 1863
In the matter of the petition of J.D. Tolson and D. Maggard for letters of Administration on the Estate of Hays Rodgers, deceased.
In reading and filing the petition of J.D. Tolson and David Maggard for letters of Administration on the Estate of Hays Rodgers, deceased, it is ordered that letters of Administration be granted to the said J.D. Tolson & David Maggard upon their taking of the oath prescribed by law and entering into bond in the form of the statue in the sum of twenty thousand dollars with G.N. Chandler and N.R. Batt as their securities and the said J.D. Tolson and David Maggard appearing in open court and taking oath and together with their said securities signed, sealed and delivered said letters are now granted and ordered to be filed and recorded according to law and that T.H. Warren, Alsa Pace and A.W. Gillespie be appointed appraisers for which ? and that the action be recorded.
Probate court of Lauderdale County, MS March term 1869
To the Honorable E.S. Bramlette, Judge of the Probate Court of Lauderdale County. The petition of the undersigned Hays Rogers, and Mary A. Jolly, two of the heirs at law of Hays Rogers, Sr. late of said county deceased, respectfully represents unto your Honor that the said Hays Rogers, Sr. died intestate seized and possessed of a large personal estate which has heretofore been administered and distributed under the order and direction of your Honorable Court by J.D. Tolson and David Maggard the former administrators thereof as will fully appear by reference to the records of your honorable court. Further, your petitions show that the said Hays Rogers, Sr. also died intestate as aforesaid seized fee of the following lands lying and being in the County of Lauderdale and known and described as follows, to wit: W 1/2 of Sec 2; NE 1/4, E 1/2 of SE 1/4 & NW 1/4 of SE 1/4 of Sec 3; E 1/2 of NE 1/4 Sec 10; all of Township 7 R15 east containing in all 680 acres more or less. Also the said H Rogers owned five shares Mobile and Ohio Railroad stock ($500) No. 3215. Your petitioners show that together with your petitioners are the following heirs at law of the said Hays Rogers, Sr., to wit: Lewis Rogers of the State of Texas, Allen Rogers, Mary A. Jolly (one of the petitioners), Martha Meeks and Hays Rogers (another of petitioners), and Sarah A. Rogers guardian of Cornelia A. Rogers of Lauderdale County, Susan Chatham of Louisiana, Elizabeth Graham of Pickens County, Alabama and the following named minor heirs of Hays Rogers, Allen Rogers, Mary E. Rogers (who is the wife of D. Morrow and dau. of James, Hays Sr.’s son), Martha E. Rogers, Wm H. Rogers (Son of James, Hays Sr.’s son), Pernecia Ann Rogers of whom your petitioner is the guardian and Cornelia A. Rogers the ward of Sarah J. Rogers (wife of Wilson, Hays Sr.’s son) of Lauderdale County.
Your petitioners further show unto your honor that the said lands are not susceptible of division in kind amongst the several heirs named nor can the said M&O RR certificate be disposed of and divided without Administration de bonis non on said estate. Your petitioners therefore pray your Honor to grant letters of Administration on said estate to Warren H. Alford, Esq., he being the choice of our petitioners for that purpose, as well as the choice of several adult heirs of the said intestate. Upon his entering into bond in such sum as to your Honor may consider right and proper in the premises, and as in duty bound they will pray, tc.
Sworn to Subscribed before me by
Wm. E. Jolly May 24, 1869
Hays Rogers, Jr. Mary A. Jolly
To the Hon. E.S. Bramlette, Judge of the Probate Court of said County. The undersigned Administrator de bonis non of the Estate of Hays Rogers, Sr., deceased, late of said county respectfully represents unto your Honor that his said intestate has no personal estate except a certificate of stock in the Mobile & Ohio RR No. 3215 for five hundred dollars being five shares in said road. Also the following lands lying and being in the County of Lauderdale and known and described as follows, to wit: W 1/2 of Sec 2; NE 1/4, E 1/2 of SE 1/4 & NW 1/4 of SE 1/4 of Sec 3; E 1/2 of NE 1/4 Sec 10; all of Township 7 R15 E. containing in all 620 acres more or less. Further the said Administrator shows that the said Hays Rogers, Sr. left and has now surviving him the following heirs at law, to wit: Lewis Rogers of the State of Texas, Allen Rogers, Mary A. Jolly, Martha Meeks, and Hays Rogers, guardian to Allen, Mary E., Martha E., William H., and Perneca Ann Rogers and Sarah J. Rodgers guardian of Cornelia Rogers and Susan Chatham of Louisiana and Elizabeth Graham of Pickens County, Alabama.
Your petitioners further shows that it is desirable and to the best interest of all the heirs and distributees of said estate that the said Railway stock and the said lands be divided amongst the several heirs aforesaid and that a division of said lands cannot be effected without a sale of the same. He therefore prays your honor to grant him an order of sale of said lands & RR Stock for cash upon such terms as to your Honor may seem lawful and expedient and he asks that citations issue to the heirs of said Hays Rogers, resident of this county, to appear at the next term of your court to be holded on the 4th Monday in July next and that public citation be made in some newspaper, notifying the nonresident heirs of said intestate to appear at the said July term to object to the prayer of your petitioner if they think proper. And as in duty bound he will ever pray, etc.
Sworn to Subscribed before me this
The 24th of May, 1869
W. R. Alford Adm.