The Mighty Men of Lauderdale County, Mississippi (Part 3)

Born a Virginian in 1791, Jubal B. Hancock spent his early years in Tennessee.

He fought in the War of 1812, married a Choctaw woman and together they had three children: William M. Hancock, Mary M. Hancock and Caroline D. Hancock. When they relocated to Mississippi to live among his wife’s people, the Dancing Rabbit Treaty had already been signed and William and Mary were over ten years of age, Caroline, just under ten. Because Hancock was a white citizen of the United States and his wife was not head of the house, neither he nor his wife were entitled to receive any of the lands being made available to the Choctaws through the Article 14 of the Treaty, which read:

“Each Choctaw head of a family, being desirous to remain, and become a citizen of the States, shall be permitted to do so, by signifying his intention to the agent within six months from the ratification of this treaty, and he or she shall thereupon be entitled to a reservation of one section of six hundred and forty acres of land, to be bounded by sectional lines of survey; in like manner, shall be entitled to one half that quantity, for each unmarried child which is living with him, over ten years of age, and a quarter section to such child as may be under ten years of age to adjoin the location of the parent.”

According to Frank Durr, a former slave who wrote about Lauderdale County’s early history, Jubal Hancock submitted his claim for 640 acres of land on behalf of his wife, 320 acres each for William and Mary and 160 acres for Caroline. Thus began a 12-year-long legal battle

Though Jubal’s claim had been rejected by Indian Agent William Ward, on August 11, 1842 the United States Congress ratified and published the following resolution:

An Act for the Relief of Jubal B. Hancock:

“Be it enacted &c. [sic], That Jubal B. Hancock be, and he is hereby, authorized, on or before [1 January 1844], to enter at the proper land office, in legal sub-divisions, fourteen hundred and forty acres of any of the public lands of the United States, within the state of Mississippi, in lieu of a like quantity of land to which he and his three children… became entitled under the fourteenth article of the treaty of Dancing-rabbit creek…”

According to Lauderdale County historian, Fred W. Edmiston, Jubal Hancock, who in 1846 served as the Mayor and Town Marshall of Marion, owned a large vineyard from which he made large amounts of wine. Jubal’s neighbors were “delighted [that Hancock] allowed everyone to help himself [sic] free of charge.” wrote Frank Durr, a former slave.

Hancock would prove himself to be a man of many skills and gifts,

managing the Marion Drug Store in the 1850’s and serving as Marion’s postmaster from 1854 to 1860. He was elected as vice president of the Southern Democrats in Lauderdale county, was an attorney and probate judge for the county, and opened a law office in Marion in 1864 with Sylvanus Evans.

By Richelle Putnam



Edmiston, Fred W., “Lauderdale, Mississippi’s Empire County: Volume 1: The Early Years, 1830-1865.” Meridian: Lauderdale County Department of Archives and History, Inc., 2005.

Help Children Dreams Big

As we come near the end of the school year,

my mind wanders to last August when the kids, wearing their crisp uniforms, headed off to the first days of school. They seemed proud to tell me what grade they would be entering. I watched and wondered whether they were facing the year with joy or dread. I hoped that all who entered the towering doors of their school had big dreams. And they would find reasons to hold on to those dreams as they developed their futures.

We all had big dreams as children.

When you watch children play you see it there. They take many roles while building forts, acting as teachers, doctors, actresses,  firefighters, cooks, mothers, dancers, and even, the president of the United States to name a few. They have accurate depictions of the roles. Their futures look bright and attainable, and their opinions are voiced loud and clear. As you watch, you know these children are dreaming big.

Researchers have found that those who dream big and then follow those dreams

will live longer, and have happier, healthy lives. Most parents I know want this for their children. But how do they help their kids to hold on to those dreams?

The end of the year is a milestone.

It depicts the passage of time when each child is a year older and each has had a year of accomplishments that can be counted. But somewhere along the way, (usually at sixth grade) many of their dreams have died. I have wondered why?

According to Dr. Mary Pipher, author of Reviving Ophelia, the change is often due to mounting social pressures coupled with a time in their lives where everything is changing – body, hormones, and their way of thinking. While simultaneously, they are expected to distance themselves from their parents just at the time when they most need their parents’ support. Pipher states that girls stop thinking “Who Am I?” and start thinking “What must I do to please others?” Boys face similar changes in adolescence as well and they live in a society that discourages positive emotional qualities. In becoming men, our culture often teaches toughness, emotional isolation and individuality. These boys often struggle alone and avoid discussing their feelings with anyone. Researchers have found that young people need support from adults just when they think they know it all. When parents and teachers refuse to back off and continue to serve as consistent and positive guides, kids paths are less treacherous. This helps them continue to dream big and achieve their goals

Yes, it is wonderful to watch young kids dream and play.

But my greatest love is to watch teenagers thrive on their path towards adulthood.

What’s a Person To Do?

  1. Make sure your children know that anything is possible regardless of the current circumstances. Encourage them to continue even if you think the present performance is mediocre.

  2. Support your kids and support their dreams. No matter how big and unrealistic the dream appears, encourage them to pursue it to the end. If they want to sing, help them with lessons. Let them try things and tinker around. They’ll learn from experimenting.   3. Expose them about the different skills, jobs and careers. They can’t dream about being an engineer, scientist, writer, or inventor if they don’t know what these people do in their careers.

  3. Encourage them to work hard and do their best. Effort is more important than results. Besides, they are still developing and with time and effort, better results will come.

  4. Be a role model. Children learn more from what you do than what you say. Let your children know you have, and are working on your own big dreams. If you settle for less, you merely show them how. If you were unable to make your dream come true, it’s never too late.

As a College Professor, I taught many adults who were working towards their dreams late in life. My favorite was a 72 year old woman named Adelle who dropped out of high school in 10th grade. She had always dreamed of getting a college degree but life happened. She took her hard knocks, raised her sons, while going to school at night and on the weekends. Inspired by Adelle’s persistence, both her sons became doctors and were present when their mother was finally awarded her Bachelor’s degree at the age of 74. It was a happy day at her graduation when my university allowed her sons to come on stage and hand their mother her long desired and hard earned diploma for her Bachelor’s degree.

When kids see their parents dreaming and achieving, they learn that it is the natural order of things and will use it as a model for their own efforts to succeed.

Remember-these young, fresh faced students are the future leaders of our community and our nation. Let’s all help them to dream big and to hold on to those dreams.


© Rachell N. Anderson, Psy. D, April 4, 2016


Dr. Rachell Anderson is a native of Tunica, a licensed Clinical Psychologist, a Professor Emeritus and author. She taught at the University of Illinois and ran a Private Clinical Practice in Springfield, Illinois for many years. She now lives and writes in Tunica, Mississippi. Check out her website at for more articles and books.