Elizabeth Ann Hill
Few records exist on the life of Elizabeth Ann Hill (1810-1894). She married her first cousin, Blanton Meade Hill, in 1825. Their marriage produced seven children. At least two of her sons fought for the Confederacy during the Civil War, one of whom died., No doubt motivated by a desire to provide material support for her sons and the men fighting with him, Elizabeth joined the Athens Ladies Aid Society. The membership elected her directress in 1861.
Wife and first cousin of Blanton Meade Hill, a prominent Georgia planter and merchant, Elizabeth Ann Hill’s life focused mainly on her home and family. The couple married on May 19, 1825. The marriage produced seven children. Blanton Hill owned an extensive cotton plantation in Barbour County, Alabama, where the family frequently wintered. He also served on the Athens city council and directed the purchase of land for the Oconee Hill Cemetery. He had the dubious distinction of being the first person buried there following his death in 1857. At least two of Elizabeth’s son’s served the Confederacy. One, Blanton Abram Hill, served as a major in the 15th Alabama Infantry. He died in fighting at Deep Bottom, Virginia on September 2, 1864. The other, Alonzo Alexander Franklin Hill served as an assistant surgeon in the United States Navy before enlisting with Confederate forces. In 1858, he organized the National Artillery in Athens. The unit’s members elected him captain. On January 2, 1861, with war fast approaching, the members voted to rename their unit the Troup Artillery. The Troup Artillery saw action at Fredericksburg and served as the extreme left flank of Pickett’s Charge on the third day at Gettysburg. Their final battle occurred at Appomattox Station. Hill rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel and survived the war. Her sons’ service inspired Elizabeth to join the Athens Ladies Aid Society. The Society’s membership elected her directress in 1861. She died on March 2, 1894, following a lengthy illness lasting several months. Her funeral took place at the First Methodist Church where she had been a devoted member from the time of her marriage until her death. One of her lifelong friends asserted that “No higher tribute could be paid to her character than to say that during all her life she never knowingly wronged a human being. Kind, gentle, and affectionate, she left her impress on the characters of all who came in contact with her and knew her well.”