Saturday, July 29, 2017

Hopkins Family Trials & Troubles

 Private Charles Sanford Hopkins.  
Tinted salt-print photograph.
Virginia Historical Society 2012.109.1

Charles Sanford Hopkins was a member of the 5th New York Volunteer Infantry, known as Duryée’s Zouaves.  The Virginia Historical Society received this portrait of Hopkins with his Zouave uniform, letters and other personal effects in a 2012 gift.

His parents Charles Hopkins and Elizabeth Sanford Jennings Hopkins kept the package of his belongings after their son died of pneumonia at Chesapeake General Hospital in Hampton, Virginia, on April 28, 1862.

The War was exceptionally miserable for the Hopkinses. Charles was their second son to die. His brother William, a member of New York's 48th Infantry died 6 months earlier at Hilton Head of a similar ailment. Baby Emma died at 18 months in 1864.


Elizabeth seems to have given birth to nine children. Only one survived beyond the age of 25.
Daughter Eliza Willis Hopkins Hutchinson (1840-1930) lived to be 80. Elizabeth died in 1904 at 80 also. Many family members are buried in the Sea View Cemetery in Suffolk County, New York.


Why this one story out of many sad tales of Civil War mothers?  Elizabeth Jennings Hopkins left a quilt, one block of which inspired the July Yankee Diary block.

Album Quilt
Elizabeth Sanford Jennings Hopkins, American, 1824-1904
Denver Art Museum

Elizabeth Jennings was born in Fairfield, Connecticut and married Charles Hopkins in 1841.


They lived in Port Jefferson on Long Island, New York. I spent my younger years near Huntington, not far from Port Jefferson. so I am always interested in Long Island album quilts.

Elizabeth's seems to be the only signature on the quilt.
She may have made all the blocks. Her star with a heart block above.

On the left a clock shelf and a glass-fronted clock
with a floral painting.



References to sailing and shipbuilding, the industries of Port Jefferson in the 19th century: A sailboat and light house, mariner's compass and a sea gull perhaps.

Port Jefferson in the early 20th century

So much promise in a life before the beginning of the Civil War; so much loss after.
More on Dureya's Zouaves
and quilts with zouaves

The Sea View graveyard

4 comments:

Suzanne A said...

I'm amazed that this photo of a Yankee soldier was given to the Virginia Historical Society and that they took it. Why?

Some aspects of the Elizabeth Hopkins quilt are reminescent of the Reunion Quilt made in Brooklyn. This quilt is extremely well sewn, the applique circles actually look perfectly circular in shape, a difficult result to achieve.

Liz D said...

I noticed that too--a Yankee in VA Historical Sociey, I wondered why. Too bad he couldn't com e home to NY!

Barbara Brackman said...

He died in Virginia. That's part of their history too.

Sok Sareth said...

Lol! I've been Terry, Carey, Carrie, Kerrie, Ceri - and unfortunately all my junk mail up until I was married (and then a few after that) was addressed to Mr!
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