Sylvanus M. Hankins Papers

Manuscript Collection #297
Hankins, Sylvanus M., 1847-1918
Physical description
0.073 Cubic Feet, 38 items , copies, including correspondence, a memoir, clippings, and genealogical notes.
Preferred Citation
Sylvanus M. Hankins Papers (#297), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.
ECU Manuscript Collection
No restrictions

Papers (1811-1958) of A. D. Peace and Samuel Peace, and Matt Hankins, relating to Trinity College, North Carolina, Civil War battles at Washington, NC, Rappahannock Bridge, and Kelly's Ford, VA, including of copies, a memoir, clippings, genealogical notes, financial account, Bible records, amateur verse, contract, account of medical services.

Scope and arrangement

This collection consists of three types of material; correspondence (1811-1888), a memoir (1863-1865), and genealogical and miscellaneous material.

A major portion of the correspondence is that between A.D. Peace and Samuel Peace primarily concerning school life at Trinity College, North Carolina (1859-1860). Discussed are tuition costs, length of college sessions, attendance, and other facets of school life. An interesting early letter from Matt Hankins to his son in Wilmington contains commentary on health, illness, and advice on life (1811). Other interesting correspondence is by Civil War soldiers. Of note are accounts of the fighting in Washington, N.C. (1863), a description of the Battle of Rappahannock Bridge and Kelly's Ford, Va. (Nov. 7, 1863), and information on the condition of the troops.

The major portion of the collection is the memoir of Sylvanus M. Hankins. S.M. Hankins (1847-1918) was a member of the Hankins family of Madison County, Florida and descended from Dennis Hankins of Wilmington, N.C. S.M. Hankins was drafted into the Confederate army at the age of 16 and served in Company D 11th Florida Regiment which fought in North Florida. Hankins' memoir is a description of his service as a Confederate soldier but includes valuable information on civilian as well as military life during this troubled period. Hankins comments on the problem of deserters; their thefts, vandalism and terrorism; and the Confederate Army's methods of dealing with such men, describing executions of soldiers and the civilians who aided them. Also noteworthy are Hankins' descriptions of the guarding of a blockade runner at Deadman's Bay; the Battle of St. Marks (Natural Bridge) (1865); and a description of a journey to Andersonville Prison to deliver captured Union soldiers. Hankins describes in detail Confederate treatment of captured enemy soldiers and runaway slaves.

The final portion of the collection consists of genealogical material for the Hankins family and a miscellaneous group. Included are the muster roll of Company D 11th Florida Regiment; a financial account of the schooling of Marie Hankins (1890); family Bible records; an example of amateur verse; an indenture contract; and an account of expense including medical services (1891).

Administrative information
Custodial History

December 17, 1975, 38 items; Papers (1811-1858) of Hankins Family of Madison County, Florida, consisting of correspondence, a memoir, clippings, genealogical notes, and miscellaneous. Loaned for copying by Dr. W. Wes Hankins, Greenville, N.C.

Source of acquisition

Loaned by Dr. W. Wes Hankins

Processing information

Processed by D. Lennon, June 1976

Encoded by Apex Data Services

Copyright notice

Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.

Key terms
Personal Names
Hankins, Sylvanus M., 1847-1918
Corporate Names
Confederate States of America. Army--Military life
Confederate States of America. Army. Florida Infantry Regiment, 11th
Trinity College (Randolph County, N.C.)--Students
Bible records--Florida
Fugitive slaves--Confederate States of America
Florida--History--Civil War, 1861-1865
Natural Bridge (Fla.), Battle of, 1865
North Carolina--History--Civil War, 1861-1865
Rappahannock Station, 2nd Battle of, Va., 1863
United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Desertions
United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Personal narratives, Confederate
United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Prisoners and prisons