Bullitt County History

Richard Morgan Hocker

The following sketch is taken from History of Kentucky, Volume 5 by William Elsey Connelley and Ellis Merton Coulter; Judge Charles Kerr, editor. The volume is copyright 1922 by American Historical Society. This sketch is on pages 411-412.

Richard Morgan Hocker. A capable and energetic representative of the banking interests of Bullitt County is found in Richard Morgan Hocker, who since his arrival at Lebanon Junction in 1889 has gained a financial footing in every way commensurate with his most sanguine expectations. In invading the realms of finance, Mr. Hocker has swung far from the moorings of his youth, for his earliest associations were those with railroading, although he came of agricultural stock.

Mr. Hocker was born on a farm in Marion County, Kentucky, August 15, 1856, a son of Samuel and Mary Jane (West) Hocker. Samuel Hocker was born of respectable and respected parents in Lincoln County, Kentucky, and as a young man went to Marion County, Kentucky, where he followed farming until his death in 1876, when he was sixty-three years of age, his birth having occurred April 8, 1813. While he was a quiet, honorable and inoffensive citizen, at the close of the war between the states he was accused of having been a sympathizer of the Confederacy, and in 1865 was arrested by so-claimed local Unionists, but of doubtful character. In the dark days of the Reconstruction period, men's passions were easily inflamed and it needed but small excuse or none at all for the worst element to cause distress to even the most peaceful and innocent man. While Mr. Hocker was released, his farm buildings and crops were burned, causing him a loss of $3,000. Mr. Hocker was a democrat in politics, and in his religious faith a devout Methodist. By his first marriage he had three children. His second wife was Mary Jane West, a native of Simpson County, Kentucky, and they had seven children, among whom was Richard Morgan.

Richard Morgan Hocker attended the district schools and was reared on the home farm until the age of sixteen years, at which time he began clerking in a store. This lasted only for a short period, however, when he was attracted to railroading, as were then, and still are, so many of the youths of the country districts. Securing work with the Louisville & Nashville Railroad, he was on the Memphis branch until contracting yellow fever, in 1878, and was sent home from Erin, Tennessee, for recovery. He then resumed railroading, which, in all, he followed for a period of eight years for the most part as a conductor. In 1889 Mr. Hocker located at Lebanon Junction and established himself in the hotel business, which he followed for ten years. He then became cashier of the Lebanon Junction Bank, and after several years was made president of that institution, as such having served to the present. Mr. Hocker may be said to be a departure from the long-accepted type of banker, having a degree of adaptability and public spirit rarely associated with his prototype of some years ago. He relieves the arid and unchangeable routine of his labor with participation in politics and society, in both of which he wields a sane and progressive influence. While he is a democrat, he is not radically so. His religious faith is that of the Baptist Church. He has always taken an active interest in fraternal work, and is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, a Knight Templar Mason, and a Noble of the Mystic Shrine.

On May 8, 1889, Mr. Hocker was united in marriage with Miss Mollie Ricketts. a native of Bullitt County, and a daughter of Jonathan Ricketts.

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The Bullitt County History Museum, a service of the Bullitt County Genealogical Society, is located in the county courthouse at 300 South Buckman Street (Highway 61) in Shepherdsville, Kentucky. The museum, along with its research room, is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Saturday appointments are available by calling 502-921-0161 during our regular weekday hours. Admission is free. The museum, as part of the Bullitt County Genealogical Society, is a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization and is classified as a 509(a)2 public charity. Contributions and bequests are deductible under section 2055, 2106, or 2522 of the Internal Revenue Code. Page last modified: 12 Jan 2024 . Page URL: bullittcountyhistory.org/bchistory/richardhocker.html