John Davidson Hosey

What little I have heard regarding John Davidson Hosey is legendary -- that's to say it was related to me by my cousin Jo-Alice Morey. She in turn heard it from Ron Blizard to whose family's lore this story belongs (Ron is descended through Jesse Hosey and Delilah Brasher). As far as I know there isn't any documentation proving that Jesse and Stephen were even brothers -- other than the Georgia census and land records showing them at the same locations at the same time.

According to what Mr. Blizard told my cousin, the family traces its beginnings back to the year 1588 when the Spanish Armada floundered along the Irish seacoast. Supposedly, a Spanish sailor named "Josť" was washed ashore and integrated himself into the local society. Patronymically the sailor's descendants took on his name and changed the spelling to "Hosey" or "Hosea".

I've done a bit of reading in various history books and this part of the story seems very improbable as all the sailors were accounted for; either they were drowned, killed by the natives, shot by the English or a lucky few were sent back to Spain. Also, there are native Irish records for that name predating the Spanish Armada by at least 500 years (either from the native ” h-Eodhusa/Hussey; or, from de Houssaye/ de Hosey -- one of the Anglo-Norman invaders of 1170 who came in the company of Hugh de Lacy ).

Anyway, the legend continues that the family eventually moved to Scotland and then on to the English colonies in North America. On the transatlantic voyage to the colonies the parents died, leaving two young boys in the care of a man named Autry who raised the two children to maturity and allowed them to keep their parents surnames. John Davidson Hosey was supposedly a son of one of the two boys who arrived from Scotland.

Read Mr. Blizard's comments regarding this essay.

The following piece is extracted from a newspaper article sent to me by William Darrell Hosey. The story agrees almost verbatim with the oral history passed on by Ron Blizard.

Patton, Joe / with J.E. (Eugene) Hosey and James Portwood. "Talladega County Steeped in History Too -- Wild West had no Lease on Indian Stories : The Life and Times of John Garrison Hosey", The Sylacauga (Ala.) News, Thursday, September 18, 1975, p.2A.

Another branch of the Hosey family, including John Garrison's father, Jesse (born 1789) relocated from St. Clair County and settled at Talladega Springs sometime after the Indian Removal. The descendants can trace their origins in this country to one John Davidson Hosey, a Scot immigrant who was reared in North Carolina by a man named Autry sometime in the 1750's. He would have been John Garrison's grandfather.

It is believed that both parents died while crossing the Atlantic and that Autry took them in rather than see the boys left destitute. It is said that one man wanted to adopt the boys but that Autry thought it would be wrong to deprive them of that birthright and while rearing them as his own left them with their rightful surnames.

Only a genealogical search would reveal precisely where in Scotland the family originated, but some light may have been shed by a visitor to Kimberly-Clark, a Scotsman, who spied J.E. Hosey's name on a tool box and asked if Hosey's ancestor's had come from Scotland. Told they had, the visitor said that he knew many Hoseys around Edinburgh and conjectured they probably came from that area.