James DICKERSON, Sarah HOBBS, and Clara McCOY are Alethia DICKERSON’s parents. Two wives for one man without bigamy or polygamy? Well, yes. James married Sarah in 1845 when they were 21 and 19 respectively. About a year later they had their first and only child, Alethia. Just six years later Sarah would die at age 25 in young adulthood like many of her siblings (a story for another day).
Six more years pass and James marries Clara McCoy in 1857 during a time of great economic turmoil for the United States. They both are about 32 years old on their wedding day in January. Sometime in 1859 they have a son, little George Monroe. The 1860 census reveals that James was working as a day laborer. No extra people were listed in the household indicating that he did not have servants or own slaves.
Civil War started in South Carolina in April of 1861 and James enlisted in the 45th GA Regiment eleven months later. We are enriched to have 12 letters written by James to Clara during his time in the Regiment. To follow the saga, look for six posts with two letters per post in the weeks to come. Let the curtain rise . . .