John Hill

#1117, b. 29 May 1782, d. 6 December 1858

Relationship3rd great-grandfather of Paul Edward Lawrence
ChartsChildren of John Hill and Margaret Covington
Descent from John Hill to Researcher
FatherJohn Hill d. c 1817

Major Life Events

     John Hill was born on 29 May 1782 in Rockingham Co., North Carolina.1,2 He married Margaret L. Covington, daughter of John Covington and Mary Haines, on 6 January 1800 in Rockingham Co., North Carolina.1 John died on 6 December 1858 in Davidson Co., Tennessee, at age 76.3

Children of John and Margaret L. Covington


     In 1785 the northern half of Guilford Co. become Rockingham Co. Although John technically was born in Guilford Co., he is generally referred to as having been born in Rockingham Co.

     John and Margaret left North Carolina arriving in Davidson County, Tennessee in December 1809.

     The following is an account of John's service in the army in the War of 1812 is taken from William S. Corn's manuscript John & Margaret Hill of Rockingham County NC and Davidson County TN and Some of their Descendants.

     John Hill served in the War of 1812 in Capt. Richard Tate's Company of the Tennessee Volunteer Mounted Gunmen. John had a rank of 3rd Lieutenant. The Company had three Lieutenants, all elected by the men. John was the third one elected. Tate's Company was in Colonel Thomas Williamson's Regiment and General John Coffee's Brigade. General Andrew Jackson was the Army Commander. John enlisted on September 28, 1814, and was discharged on April 27, 1815.

     The men rode from Nashville, Davidson County to Fayetteville in Lincoln County for their Rendezvous. They were mustard into the Company on 28 September 1814. After mustering in, they rode from Fayetteville to Fort Montgomery in Alabama. From Ft. Montgomery, they went to Pensacola, Florida. Arriving on November 6th, they put down a problem with the Creek Indians and the Spanish. Afterwards they returned to Ft. Montgomery. Jackson thought that the main British attack would come at Mobile and he wanted his best there. When it became obvious that the British would attack at New Orleans, Jackson sent for Coffee's troops. Jackson was uneasy about the coming battle until his West Tennesseans arrived in camp.

     Three main battles were fought. The first was December 23rd. The British believed that the Americans would not attack and were careless about their security. Jackson sent his West Tennesseans to get behind the British Troops. The Gunboat Carolina slipped down the river and when ready, started firing at the British. The Tennesseans started firing at the same time. The British lost a number of men and the American casualties were light. Jackson had his men withdraw to form a defensive rampart after this battle. There were a couple of other minor skirmishes during the next week.

     The second battle was an artillery duel on January 1st, 1815. Again the British had greater losses than the Americans although this was not a decisive battle.

     The third battle was on January 8th, 1815. This was the main battle and the British had enormous casualties compared to the very light casualties of the Americans. The British lost three generals in this battle. Jackson had about 4,000 men. The British had about 5,400 in the attacking force. The British attacked in their usual fashion, in long lines of soldiers walking toward the enemy. The sight of their redcoats was supposed to frighten the Americans and the British would march into New Orleans. The American marksmen lined up three or four deep behind the wall. Each man was to pick a target and fire. When one man fired, he fell back and the next one came foward to fire. The Americans got to the point where it was constant fire that the British were walking into. The firing lasted only 25 minutes. There were more advances like this by the British. All told, the infantry battle lasted less than 2 hours. It must be remembered that the Americans were using muzzle loading rifles and muskets.

     The estimates were that the British lost between 2,000 and 3,000 men killed, wounded, or missing in action. The American losses were seven killed and six wounded. Over the next few days the British pulled back to the coast. They propped up the dead so as to look like they were still there in force. The remaining forces got on their ships and left.

     During this period, Captain Tate's Company lost six men who died from wounds received and two others were wounded. Four others were lost to sickness. Additionally there several transfers to and from other companies.

     The soldiers stayed at New Orleans until sometime around early April 1815 and then rode back to Fayetteville where they were mustered out of service. All told, John's Company traveled 1,851 miles by horseback. John was paid $116.06 for his mileage. At the beginning, John had two horses, one to ride and a pack horse. He had the second horse up till the 10th of February and only one horse to the end of service on April 27th, 1815. He was paid 40 cents per day per horse, a total of 349 days. He received an allowance of $139.20 for the horses.

     During this period, John was allowed $127.80 for rations. He received some in cash, $35.20 and some as ration in kind.

     John was paid $30.00 per month for his service, or $210.00 for seven months. On 3 March 1818, John received the last of his pay for his services.

     The Pension Application for the widow Margaret Hill indicates that John served as a private in Capt. Richard Tate's Company.3 However, Muster Rolls and other information indicates he was a third lieutenant.4

     John made a will on 11 April 1855 in Davidson Co., Tennessee. John's will:

I John Hill of Davidson County State of Tennessee do make and publish this my last Will and Testament.

In the first place I give to my son James S. Hill a piece or parcel of the land where I now live to contain sixty acres_ Beginning in Willaby Williams line at a rock corner between me and Felix Compton running thence South to John Williams Line thence East to a line tree corner, thence South to Bartley M. Barnes line, thence East with - Barnes line so far that running to the beginning will give him the sixty acres off of the west end of my land.
Secondly I give to my daughter Margaret Catherine Hunt sixty acres of my land where I now live bounded as follows: Beginning at a hickory the north corner of the land I bought of Philip Campbell running thence west so as to make sixty acres off the northside of the land I bought of said Philip Campbell about nineteen acres and a little upwards of which was deeded to me by James S. Parrish though I bought the same of Philip Campbell as above. I also give to my daughter Margaret Catherine Hunt a negro girl about twelve years and a little upwards of age named Nancy. The above land and slave I give to my said daughter Margaret Catherine during her life only and for her sole and seperate use during that time free from any right on the part of her husband & in no way to be liable for his debts or contracts & at her death to go to the children she may leave or to the child if but one she may leave and if her children should all die before attaining twenty one years of age, or without marrying and leaving issue on his or her death before twenty one years of age then said land and slave and her increase if any to return to my estate and be divided among my other children and their heirs; and if a child or children of my same daughter Margaret Catherine should die leaving issue before twenty one years of age then their issue to stand in the place of the parent to take and hold under any will as any parent would if living.
Thirdly, I give to my son Alexander Hill seventy acres of land off of the place where I now live & this place I bought of Philip Campbell as above viz he is to have the balance of the land I bought of said Philip Campbell & as much off of any adjoining Land as will make the seventy acres.
Fourth--All the balance of my estate of every kind and description, real, personal, I give to my wife Margaret, during her life & at her death the land to be equally divided between my sons John Hill and my daughter Mary J. Dean or if it cannot be conveniently divided to be sold & the proceeds to be divided between them. The balance of the property I have given to my wife at her death to be sold and the proceeds equally divided between my sons Alexander, John & James S. Hill, except two hundred dollars out of the proceeds which I give to my niece, Margaret Hunt. If my wife should wish it she can sell any of the stock and dispose of the proceeds as she please.
At her death I wish her if the buggy is not worn out to give to our daughter Margaret Catherine Hunt for her sole and seperate use.
What I have given to my daughter Mary Jane Dean is for her sole and seperate use not to be liable to the debt--contracts, or responsibilities of her husband & at her death to go to her children living & the children of any of her deceased children, they representing their parent--& the same representation to hold among her grand-children.
I give to my grandson John Porterfield Hill son of James S. Hill one hundred dollars to be raised on my death out of the Estate left my wife.
I appoint my sons Alexander, John & James S. Hill Executors to my will & require that they do not give security. I wish them to see my will be strictly carried out in relation to the property given to my daughter Margaret C Hunt & to her child or children after her death
Witness my hand and seal this 11th day of April 1855.
John Hill seal

Witness: F R Cheatham
F Alderson
C P Cheatham.5

     His will was recorded on 30 October 1859 in Davidson Co., Tennessee. A proper writing to be the last will and testament of John Hill decd was produced in open Court for probate and proved thus:
F R Cheatham and C P Cheatham two of the subscribing witnesses thereto being first duly sworn depose and say that they became such in the presence of the said John Hill, dec. at his request & on the request of each other & that they verily believe he was of sound and disposing mind and memory at the time of executing the same. Ordered that said paper writing be admitted to record as such last will and testament of the said John Hill dec. Whereupon James S. Hill one of the executors named in said will came into Court & gave bond in the sum of fifteen thousand dollars - there being no security required and qualified according to deed Ordered that letters testamentary issued to him.5

U. S. Census Records

Census1830John Hill was listed as the head of a family on the 1830 Census in Davidson Co., Tennessee. Enumerated were:
          1 white male under 5 (unknown)
          1 white male 5-10 (unknown)
          2 white males 10-15 (Washington and James)
          1 white male 15-20 (John H. or Thomas, where is the other one?)
          1 white male 20-30 (Alexander)
          1 white male 40-50 (John)
          1 white female 5-10 (dau. Margaret)
          1 white female 10-15 (Mary)
          1 white female 40-50 (wife Margaret).6
Census1840John Hill was listed as the head of a family on the 1840 Census in Davidson Co., Tennessee. Enumerated were:
          2 white males 20-30 (Thomas and Washington)
          1 white male 30-40 (Alexander)
          1 white male 50-60 (John)
          1 white female 15-20 (Margaret Catherine)
          1 white female 50-60 (Margaret L.)7
Census1850In the Census of 1850 enumerated 3 September 1850, John Hill was listed as a head of household in Davidson Co., Tennessee. He was listed as age 68, occupation as a farmer with property value at $6,300, born in North Carolina. Also enumerated in the household: Margaret L. Hill and Alexander Hill.2


  1. [S129] William S. Corn, John & Margaret Hill of Rockingham County NC and Davidson County TN.
  2. [S485] 1850 U. S. Census, Coffee & Davidson Cos., Tennessee, U. S. Population Schedule, p. 277A, line 32, dwelling 146, family 146.
  3. [S126] John Hill, Pension Application, WO 2081, WC 4615, Series M-313, Roll 45.
  4. [S1087] John Hill, War of 1812 Service Records.
  5. [S1944] Davidson County Wills Volume 17: pages 630, 631.
  6. [S1413] 1 June 1830, 1830 U. S. Census, Bedford, Carroll, Davidson, Dickson, and Dyer Cos., Tennessee, Washington, DC, National Archives and Records Administration, U. S. Population Schedule, page 235.
  7. [S1416] June 1, 1840, 1840 U. S. Census, Dickson, De Kalb, and Davidson Counties, Tennessee, Washington, DC, National Archives and Records Administration, U. S. Population Schedule, page 343.
  8. [S4749] William S. Corn, John & Margaret Hill of Rockingham County NC and Davidson County TN Part 4, John Hill - Margaret Covington Chart.