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Male 1783 - 1850  (67 years)

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  • Name John HODGEN 
    Born 27 Apr 1783  VA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    AFN J5CK-6D 
    Died 4 Jun 1850 

    • (1) Mather, Otis M., Six Generations of Larues and Allied Families, Hodgenville, KY: 1921, pp. 122-125:


      Son of Sarah LaRue . . . and Robert Hodgen. Born in Virginia, April 27, 1783. Died June 4, 1850. Married, December 30, 1802, Diedamia LaRue . . . , who was born April 24, 1785, and died about 1859.

      Spencer, in his "History of Kentucky Baptists," gives the following sketch: "He (John Hodgen) was baptized into the fellowship of Severns Valley Church in 1802, and was in the constitution of Nolynn Church, in LaRue County, the following year. Here, after several years, he was licensed to exercise his gift of speaking. He exhibited some sprightliness in exhortation, and in 1820, on the resignation of Jonathan Paddox, was invited to preach once a month at South Fork Church. To this church he moved his membership. When his ordination was called for, Nolynn Church refused her concurrence on account of his Arminian sentiments. He was, however, ordained in March, 1822, by John Chandler, Horatio Chandler, Johnson Graham and Isaac Hodgen, and became pastor of South Fork Church. Nolynn Church was expressly opposed to his ordination, and the affair caused an interruption between the two neighboring churches. Nolynn refused to commune with South Fork. This state of affairs continued till 1829, when W. M. Brown succeeded Mr. Hodgen in the pastorate, and harmony was restored. Meanwhile Mr. Hodgen moved to Illinois and joined the Campbellites. After a few years he moved from there to Iowa, where he finished his course on earth."

      Dr. Will S. Hodgen, of Lebanon, Ky., has submitted to the writer four old letters written by John Hodgen . . . , which are of interest not only because they reveal the writer as a man of intense religious zeal, but also because they present to the mind sketches of conditions on different frontiers as the writer followed the westward course of empire. Born in the old Dominion State in the closing days of the war for Independence, John Hodgen was brought by his parents in infancy to the rapidly growing District of Kentucky, where he was educated and married, and where all of his large family of children were born. Here he was chiefly instrumental in laying out the town which he caused to be named for his family. He was already past the prime of life when, in the Fall of the year 1828, he followed the tide of immigration to the valley of the Sangamon in the new State of Illinois. There he remained some seven or eight years, and then again moved westward to the fertile plains of the Iowa Territory, where his closing days were spent. All the letters referred to were addressed to the writer's oldest son, Robert Hodgen . . . , who appears to have been the only child who remained in Kentucky when the father went west. The first is dated January 23, 1826, at Clear Run, postmarked Elizabethtown, Ky., February 2, and addressed to Robert Hodgen, Lexington, Ky. The latter at this time was attending a medical school at Lexington, and the letter is principally confined to advice that the son should not neglect his religious duties. The father says: "It would be truly pleasing to me that at least a portion of your leisure hours be devoted to the great Author of your existence, to whom you are amenable."

      Then follows a letter written by the son, Robert Hodgen, to his father, dated Campbellsville, Ky., November 23, 1827, and addressed to "Mr. John Hodgen., near Elizabethtown, Ky."

      On March 27, 1831, John Hodgen wrote from Sangamon City, Illinois, to "Dr. Robert Hodgen, Campbellsville, Green County, Kentucky." The writer begins by saying that a letter from the latter, dated September 25, had been received some time in November last, and continues: "I have delayed writing to you much longer than I intended when I received it. One reason was that the information you wished me to give you on my views of the operation of the Spirit of God in producing regeneration, I wanted to examine the Scriptures and cite you to them where the particular instances of conversion took place are mentioned in them and by what means; but having much on my hands until late in December, I had not time to read, when there fell a very deep snow, and several, one after another, so that the snow has been upwards of 2 feet deep through the winter, which has caused the mail to come on very irregular. I am at this time just arising from a confinement of influenza of near six weeks past, in which time my suffering has been great. I am not able at this time to write the things in detail that I intended and would even wish, my complaint being mostly in my head, which even at this time pains me so that I can scarcely see how to write." Then follows a discussion of the writer's religious views, ending with the admonition: "My son, read the Scriptures for yourself: take no man or set of men's views as paramount to the living word of God."

      The next letter is dated October 11, 1831, at Richland Creek, Sangamon C'ty, Illinois. This is of particular interest on account of its mention of the Herndon family, one member of which afterward became so intimately associated with Abraham Lincoln. William H. Herndon, the future law partner and biographer of Lincoln, was born at Greensburg, Ky., ten miles from Campbellsville, on the 28th of December, 1818. In the letter of date October 11, 1831, John Hodgen says to his son: "I have been at Springfield since I received your letter (of August 21) to make inquiry about the letter that you sent me in which you enclosed the note on Herndon, but cannot get any information about such a letter having arrived there. * * * I would advise you to delay pressing on Herndon for the money for several months longer, my reason is that William Herndon is owing of me and your uncle Samuel by note and I have been trying to get something from him ever since I have been in this country and have not got anything from him but fair promises. He told me some time ago that I might depend on his paying a part if not all of it about December next, and should you push his son he probably would make it a pretext not to pay me, as he has promised, which would throw me further in the back-ground, as his note amounts to more than one hundred dollars. The old man pretends to own nothing and all the trading and business he does is for his son and brother and I presume there will be no difficulty in your getting the amount of his note to you." (A letter of Dr. Robt. Hodgen, dated May 2, 1831, shows that this note was against F. G. Herndon). He goes on to say: "I am at this time only paying twenty-five per cent on about $75.00. My crop of wheat will be about 400 bushels * * * I have paid nearly all my contracts for work off. Should I keep my health I hope it will not be long before I shall be able to square with the people in this section of the country. * * * Self sits in the chair of almost all the families in my acquaintance. As the preacher, so the people. The Methodist conscience is up to about thirty, the Presbyterian from thirty to a hundred, the Baptist about twenty-five, the world as much as they can contract for, and the poor Reformers are not able to help one another out of their difficulties * * * and woe to the poor, for they can't get land nor much money. * * * We love our little self the best and had rather let the speculator have money at 50 per cent than a poor neighbor, lest they should lose all. * * * This section of country has been uncommonly sickly and a good many deaths."

      The last letter is dated August 7, 1839, at Desmoin City, Iowa Territory. It speaks of the great number of cases of fever in that section. "Times are poor with us this season about selling anything for cash. Corn is plenty, but no sale, oats are fine this season and will be very low, wheat - is thought can be got at 5 bits a bushel this fall. We will have a very great pressure this fall about money, as all this district is ordered at Washington into market, the sales to commence on the 21st of October next." He advises that some person at the home of Robert Hodgen who is expected soon in Iowa provide himself with money in Kentucky with which to secure lands in that Territory, as the chance of procuring money in Iowa will be poor.
    Person ID I706  Frost, Gilchrist and Related Families
    Last Modified 29 Dec 2018 

    Father Robert HODGEN,   bur. Nolynn Church Cemetery, LaRue County, KY Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Relationship natural 
    Mother Sarah LaRUE,   bur. Burial: Nolynn Church Cemetery, LaRue County, KY Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Relationship natural 
    Family ID F12859  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Deidamia LaRUE,   b. 24 Apr 1785, Frederick [now Clarke] County, VA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Abt 1859  (Age 73 years) 
    Married 30 Dec 1802 
    Last Modified 29 Dec 2018 19:11:43 
    Family ID F969  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart