The Pickens Family History, photos, documents, & stories
Sat, May 1, 2010 10:52:45 PM
In searching through my files I ran across this information. You probably already have it but I will send it in case you don’t. 

The first claim I found was in 
“Pickens Families of the South Appendix" which I believe you said you had. 
The next seven I got from another source. I’m not sure of the source but my file was titled
  "Discover Interesting Facts About Your Family Pickens”. 

Another Document is a claim for Rev. War Pension made by Robert Ellis I have edited it to include only the section which deals with Joseph and Andrew.
~M. Davis

NINETY SIX DISTRICT: Personally came Lieutenant Joseph Pickens before me and on his oath deposes that on the eleventh day of February last past (1770) he being called out with part of Capt. Thomas' company of militia under the command of Col. Andrew Pickens in the public service of this state on Savannah River near a place called the Cherokee Ford were being engaged in a fight with a large body of disaffected armed men called Col. Boyd's Tories, that in said fight he the deponent lost a saddle and saddle cloth and a pair of saddle bags and blanket, appraiseth same to one hundred and twenty pounds total. 

Sworn to the twenty first day of July 1779, before me, 

The above certified the 11-th of December 1779 by Andrew Pickens, Colonel. 
12 NOVEMBER 1779 ) We, William Drannan, James Strain, and Ezekiel 
NINETY SIX DISTRICT ) Evans, Freeholders, do on our oath value and appraise a certain bay gelding, pacer, 13 1/2 hands high, six years old, branded JP on the near Buttock, lost and taken by the enemy at Savannah on or about the 1st of October last, at Two Thousand Pounds Currency. 
Sworn to before me, 

12-th NOV. 1779 
Personally appeared before PAT CALHOUN, one of 
the Justices of said District, JOSPEH PICKENS and maketh oath that he never hath got said horse or any satisfaction therefore. 

Certified 11-th December 1779, ANDREW PICKENS 
STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA | Debtor to JOSEPH PICKENS, Deceased. for duty 
to Col. Anderson's return Wagon Service in 1779 and 1780, 376 days. and a bay mare lost in July 1781. 
W. No. 37. 
MR. JOSEPH PICKENS, deceased, his account of Military Duty as Captain done before and since the reduction of Charleston' also for wagon hire in 1779 and 1780 on Militia account, and for a bay mare lost in 1781, the whole to amount to 335 pounds, 18, shillings, 6 pence, three farthings. 
Please to deliver the indent that is due my late husband JOSEPH PICKENS for militia duty and other services to Mr. John Lesley and his receipt shall be of sufficient from, 
Gentlemen, Your most humble servant, 

To the treasurer of the State of South Carolina, this may certify that I saw Eleanor Pickens, widow and executor of the late Joseph Pickens, sign the above order, this 21 January 1786 

INDENTED CERTIFICATE: Pursuant to an Act of the General Assembly passed the 16-th of March 1783, We the Commissioners of the Treasury, have this day delivered to the estate of JOSPEH PICKENS, this our INDENTED CERTIFICATE, for the sum of Three hundred and thirty five pounds, eighteen shillings and six pence for Militia Duty as Captain, also for Wagon Hire in 1779 and 1780, and for a bay mare lost in 1781 as per account passed the Commission of Accounts, they said, his Executors, Administrators or Assigns will be entitled to receive from his office the Sum of Twenty three pounds, ten shillings and four pence on demand, one year’s interest on the principal sum of 335 pounds, 18 shillings and 6 pence, and the like interest annually. 
Given under our hands at the TREASURY OFFICE IN CHARLESTON, and 29-th day of August 1785. 
Signed: J. MITCHELL, Treasurer.

EDITOR'S NOTE: This indent was cashed by John Lesly, David Lesly, Abram Markley, and was used to purchase 200 acres of land by ANDREW PICKENS, JR. who was a son of Capt. Joseph and Eleanor Pickens. Final payments made August 14, 1787.

Robert Ellis Sr - Pension Request
(As related to the Justice of the Peace of Morgan, County TN)
On this 10th day of November 1838, personally appeared before me, Jesse Triplett a justice of the peace for the County of Morgan afore said Robert Ellis a resident citizen of the County of Morgan, State of Tennessee aged (78) seventy-eight years being born in the state of Virginia in Buckingham County in the year one thousand seven hundred and sixty, as he believes from information, having no record of his age but from calculation, he is certain it must have been in 1759 or 1760 but is most inclined to think it was in 1760, and being duly sworn for that purpose on this oath makes the following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the act of Congress passed the 7th of June 1832.

He states that he volunteered and entered the service of the United States in Abbeville district in South Carolina under William Conaway with John Prater, William Prater, James Mucklewell, Thomas Lacy, Andrew Miller as privates and went after the Cherokee Indians, and marched to many places on the frontiers crossing Little River and going zigzag through the Nation. Started sometime in the fall of 1780, the days nor month not recollected, during said tour never stayed long at one place. Maybe a night or two at the home of John Fox, a faithful soldier from character, and was at many white peoples residence who had left their homes through fear of the Indians and was finally marched to a little creek called generosity, and had there a skirmish with the Indians and there was seven white man that was hurt, he was carried home to his residence being unable to serve for two or three months; after the applicant served about one month at lease this tour, not being able to say certain how long but agreeable to his best recollection he served at lease one month having been wounded in the heel and went home.

He again volunteered for a second time as a private soldier under Captain Joseph Pickens and Colonel McCall and entered service as well, as now recollected about the first of January 1781, and joined General Pickens and was marched to the Cowpens and was in the Battle at Cowpens and marched off from said place under General Pickens and went to a camp ground in North Carolina Stationed there about one week and thence crossing the Saluda and Broaiver at different places and thence to Reids Mill about eight miles from home, had a written discharge from Captain Joseph Pickens for two month's service.

He again volunteered for a third time, out of Captain John Wilson's Company and entered service a short time before the Siege of Ninety Six and served under Captain Joseph Pickens including during the siege, he said Captain Pickens was shot and killed in the siege, after the siege he had a written discharge from General Pickens, having served this tour one month ... (one of two lines missing) ... able to his best recollection, and he returned home.

To all my friends,
 I am sending out a company and website that was created by my daughter Deborah Hvizdos. 

For three years (from 2009 forward) she worked hard on the ancestry research of the “Pickens Family” and it has been an amazing journey for all members of my family. 

Deb's research has allowed all of us (girls) to become members of the DAR because of the Captain Joseph William Wilson Pickens from the Revolutionary War and my father into the SAR (Sons of the Revolutionary War). 
The Captains brother was General Andrew Pickens of South Carolina.

Deborah has researched back to the 12 century and beyond. Acquiring documents, photos, letters that are over 1000 pages of information. 
Deb has now done both sides of our family!

She started this company to help others find out where they came from and give you answers you have asked along your journey?

She will be doing this full-time and cost is based on time spent on each project. Please check out her website and contact her if you want to solve the mystery of where you came from?

Her company name is 
House of History, LLC 
 her website is:

Check it out and tell her Nita sent you! 
She loves the work and the challenge of finding the history and solving the mystery!


Captain Joseph William Wilson Pickens
  My 5th Great Grandfather 
  Birth 1737 in Paxton, Bucks, Pennsylvania 
  Death 28 June 1781 in Ninety Six, SC, USA 

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But today, you can't help but wonder if "We the People" are up to the challenge of nurturing the enduring ideals of our founding document.

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In fact, nearly half of the Americans surveyed by a news magazine had no idea the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution are called the Bill of Rights."
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Greetings Deborah

I have been going through the pictures you placed on “Ancestry.” After I downloaded them to my computer I was able to correct the lighting on some that were a little dark because of insufficient light. I have a high quality photo shop program which does a fairly good job on these corrections. I am e-mailing two corrected photos which you might be interested in. I have two questions: First, did you have a photo of the inside of “Old Stone Church” looking toward the front pulpit area? Second, Do you know who was buried in the single grave that was fenced off by the ornate iron fence? Just wondering!

I hope you have a fantastic weekend,


Saturday, March 5, 2011 
 Greetings Debbie

 I hope you are doing well and that the summer heat hasn't been to extreme where you live. 

 I recently found your “House of History” site on the internet. It is very impressive. It sounds like you are keeping busy and having fun at the same time.

  In reviewing some of my files I noticed an article which was about General Andrew Pickens written by Lyman Draper from an interview with William Martin. One sentence in the article particularly caught my interest.

 “He lived four miles from the courthouse, he would commonly go to court one day of each term, as if to see old friends. I have seen him come, with his broad beaver hat, his other dress corresponding, all remarkably neat, and with as much solemnity as if at church.”

 This word picture of the General in a hat prompted me to create, from an existing portrait, a composite with Andrew in a, typical period, wide brimmed beaver felt hat. As you know this style of hat was sometimes folded up and pinned in various ways. I felt however that Andrew was above everything else a plantation farmer. As one who would be out in the sun many hours a day he would most likely have the brim down as a protection from the sun, rather than pinned up as it was most often depicted in military dress. I thought you might get a kick out of my rendition of Andrew Pickens in a wide brimmed beaver hat.

 I will attach it to this note for you to look at.

from your cousin Don
Sunday, August 5, 2012 

I recently found the DAR records for another descendant of Joseph Pickens.She was my 3rd cousin on the Gibson and Hillhouse side.

Join Date: Apr 1954
She passed away in 1996. Following is her obituary.
MOUNT VERNON, Mo. … Hazel N. Hillhouse, 92, Mount Vernon, died at 12:55 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 27, 1996, at a local nursing home after a long illness. 
Miss Hillhouse was born Aug. 21, 1904, at Aurora. 
She lived in Mount Vernon most of her life. She was a graduate of Southwest Missouri State University, Springfield, and attended Joplin Business College. 
She worked in the McPherson and Stemmons law office for 13 years in Mount Vernon. During World War II, she was a substitute worker in the Mount Vernon post office. 
She worked for the Farmer's Home Administration for 13 years and for the Army Corps of Engineers in Little Rock, Ark. She retired in 1968 from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration at Cape Canaveral, Fla. She was the author of more than 350 newspaper and magazine articles. 
She was a member of First Christian Church, Mount Vernon. She was a member of the Daughters of American Colonists and the Elk Horn Prairie Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Aurora. She was a member of the American Red Cross.
There are no immediate survivors. 
I am attaching a photo of her from her college yearbook.
Good luck on finding our grandfathers burial ground.
Cousin Don

Friday, June 15, 2012

I think that your intention to write a story of your Pickens Family History is a great idea.

I have a personal diary written by my 2nd great-grandfather James D Hillhouse husband of Nancy Gibson granddaughter of Ann Pickens. The diary spanned a history of community and family history for 55 years from 1844 to 1899. In the diary he writes from the then recent death and burial of Ann Pickens Dowdle all the way to the marriage of his grand-daughter Daisy Hillhouse to my grand-father James Davis. Much of my inspiration for searching my ancestry comes from reading the diary. I would expect that your work would serve the same result. Here is an example of his work:

January 30, 1894

“This morning we set out to explore other scenes. We visited the old Spring River Campground. There we saw many gravestones of departed veteran pioneers.,,,- We were both present at the first burial August 1840 of our grandmother Dowdle”.

September 5, 1894

“James Askins died yesterday. I and Matty Holt went to the memorial at the old campground on Spring River. Found the cemetery in nice shape and neat. A large congregation in waiting for the exercises. No minister present, the old pioneers of the cross which had not yet claimed their sleeping place among the tombs took up and carried on the exercises by relating past events by short speeches. Pioneer events are sweets to the present generations which made the exercises interesting and pleasant and old pioneers very much like to hear the old stories told, though it may have many thorny spots and dreary places it has much sunshine, and beloved scenes come so vivid to our mind. It is pleasant to the thoughtful mind. The first citizen of this little city was my wife’s dear grandmother, Ann Dowdle 70 years old this August 1840”.

I apologize for the long note, but maybe it will be of interest to you.

Have a great day,

Wednesday, April 21, 2010 
Thanks for the note. My connection to Joseph Pickens is through my Davis Line. My Grandmother was a Hillhouse. Her Grandmother was Nancy Gibson Hillhouse. Ann Pickens the daughter of Joseph Pickens and her daughter Jane Dowdle Gibson came to Lawrence County, Missouri and settled there in the early 1800’s Ann died there in 1841. And is buried at the Old Campground Cemetery.
If you are interested in this line there is information available at the Lawrence Co. Missouri Historical Society. A considerable amount of information about the earlier Pickens families can be found in the writings of E. M. Sharp’s Pickens of the South including the Appendex. I got this off the internet several years ago and do not know if it is still available.
Good luck, Don

Hi Deborah,

 I just finished looking at the photos you placed on Ancestry. I enjoyed them very much. You must have had a very enjoyable and informative trip.

Thanks for sharing them. I saved most of them to my personal files. It looks like you got a lot of good information for your book.I trust that your foot is doing much better.       

I have been researching my 3rd gr. Grandfather on my mom’s side, Lieutenant George Rinker of Shenandoah Virginia, who was at the Battle of Yorktown. In his statement for a pension he states that he was active in the siege and surrender of Yorktown and after the surrender assisted in delivering the prisoners to Maryland. 

I can now add another Patriot to join our Pickens family as being involved in the formation of our great country. What makes me particularly proud is that they both were not forced into service but were willing volunteers.  

Have a great day,

I failed to mention in my last note to you of my appreciation of your research. Some of the information you have shared about your line has given me insight and clues to research in my line.
Again I say Thanks,


Quite busy indeed, as I type I am @ Boston Tea Party teaching American history to my young Slovakian niece, Silvia!

Thank u for the compliment! 

I have do much to tell you, when August is over & life slows down a bit!

One question would you allow me to use your excerpts on my website giving you notation of course!!!???

Much love ~
Most Kind Regards,

Deborah Hvizdos 
Founder & Managing Director, 
House of History, LLC