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Hubbard, Jeremiah

by Algie I. Newlin, 1988

13 Feb. 1777–23 Nov. 1849

Jeremiah Hubbard, educator and Quaker leader, was born in Mecklenburg County, Va., the son of Joseph and Ann Crews Hubbard. He was the grandson of Hardiman Crews and his Indian wife, whose name has not been found. On several occasions tradition has depicted her as a Cherokee, but according to one reference she was a "daughter of the 'Dochees' "—"Dochee" (or related spellings) is said to be the name of an ancient or mythical Indian tribe of the Virginia backcountry. She could have been from one of the small tribes of the Sioux family that inhabited the south central section of Virginia. In adulthood Jeremiah exhibited several characteristics that prompted his classification as Indian, and he and his four brothers were often referred to as "the big Cherokee boys." Hubbard "was tall, erect and straight as an arrow, being six feet two or three inches in height"; "he had a dark swarthy complexion, keen black eyes, high cheek bones, hair straight and black as coal, a large mouth and firm lips." With these features, he must have made an impressive picture as he presided over the large annual gathering of North Carolina Quakers in their spacious meeting house at New Garden. And he must have inspired the respect and awe of his pupils as he directed their intellectual training in the schoolrooms in Orange and Guilford counties and in Indiana.

Soon after the Revolutionary War, Joseph Hubbard moved his family to Person County. It seems likely that he settled on the upper waters of Richland Creek, just south of the present town of Roxboro. Little is known of Jeremiah or his family during his childhood. Late in life he paid high tribute to his half-breed Indian mother for the care, discipline, and guidance she gave him. No reference has been found to his ever having attended school, although at the height of his career he was referred to as one of the most eminent teachers and most learned persons among the North Carolina Quakers.

In 1802 Hubbard married Margaret Butler in Dinwiddie County, Va. Between the time of their marriage and 1810 they moved from Person County to Hillsborough in Orange County, and in 1815 they moved to the Deep River community near Jamestown. On 15 May 1820, Margaret Hubbard died, leaving Jeremiah with eight children ranging from four to seventeen years. On 9 Oct. 1821, he married Martha Charles of Charles City County, Va.

Hubbard is remembered primarily as a leader in education, despite the fact that he had little if any formal training. He is known to have taught in two schools in Guilford County, and it is assumed that he taught while living in Person and Orange counties. While residing in the Deep River community, he became generally recognized as an outstanding leader of the Quakers in North Carolina. As presiding clerk of the North Carolina Yearly Meeting of Friends for sixteen years, he vigorously campaigned for the establishment of a Quaker-supported boarding school to train teachers, other Quaker leaders, and members of the general public. In this effort he was joined by Nathan Hunt, who became known as the principal founder of the New Garden Boarding School (later Guilford College). Although the work of these two leaders was made more difficult by the economic depression of 1837, the response to their strong and extended appeal was sufficient to enable the Society of Friends to acquire a suitable tract of land, erect an adequate building, and launch the school upon its long history.

In February 1837, only a few months before the opening of the long-awaited New Garden Boarding School, Hubbard and his family succumbed to "Western fever" and migrated to Indiana. Jeremiah was well equipped for leadership in the rapidly developing society of that section of the country. There he continued his dual roles as outstanding teacher and minister of the Society of Friends. He was an excellent speaker, well informed, and energetic.

It is not known whether Hubbard ever sought political office, but he did take a firm stand on the burning issues of his time. He opposed slavery and joined the Manumission Society to work for gradual emancipation. In view of his Indian blood, he would have been expected to support efforts to protect the lives and rights of the exploited Indians. When Chief Ross and a few others from the Cherokee Nation went to Washington, D.C., to appeal to President Andrew Jackson, they stopped at New Garden to ask Hubbard to go with them. They were aware of his Indian ancestry and knew that he was a friend of the president. One Sunday morning after worship, the Cherokees conferred with some of the prominent Quakers present in front of the New Garden Meeting House. As a result of this conference, Hubbard agreed to accompany them to Washington. There followed an unparalleled scene—the presiding clerk of the North Carolina Yearly Meeting of Friends riding out with a band of Indians, with whom he was united in blood, personal appearance, and sympathy, to seek assistance from the president of the United States. It is said that they obtained Jackson's support for a treaty that would prevent the sale of alcoholic beverages to the Cherokees.

Hubbard died in Richmond, Ind.


Deeds of Orange County (Register of Deeds, Hillsborough).

Willard Heiss, ed., Encyclopedia of Quaker Genealogy, vol. 7 (1962).

William Wade Hinshaw, Encyclopedia of Quaker Genealogy, vols. 1 (1969), 6 (1947).

"Memorial of Whitewater Monthly Meeting of Friends to Jeremiah Hubbard," Friends Review 7 (12 Dec. 1853).

Minutes of Whitewater Monthly Meeting of Friends (Indiana), Abstracts of the Records of the Society of Friends in Indiana, Part One (1962, Indiana Historical Society, Indianapolis). Manuscript sources in Quaker Collection, Library of Guilford College: Charles F. Coffin, "Personal Recollections of Jeremiah Hubbard".

"Genealogy of the Hubbard Family with a Brief History of the Connection with the Cherokee Indians".

Minutes of Deep River Monthly Meeting of Friends.

Minutes of Spring Monthly Meeting of Friends.

Additional Resources:

Huff-Nixon Family Papers, Friends Collection and Earlham College Archives, Richmond IN. (accessed May 8, 2014).

"Petition 11281709 Details." Digital Library on American Slavery. The University of North Carolina at Greensboro. (accessed May 8, 2014).

"Petition 11283104 Details." Digital Library on American Slavery. The University of North Carolina at Greensboro. (accessed May 8, 2014).

"Guilford College." N.C. Highway Historical Marker J-35, N.C. Office of Archives & History. (accessed May 8, 2014).

"Indian Territory Court Cases." The Journal of American Indian Family Research 7, no.1 (1986). 46.  (accessed May 8, 2014).


I am looking for Jeramiah Hubbard who came from the east to Oklahoma territory to teach school and hold tent meetings as a Quaker (Friends) minister. He wrote "Forty Years Among the Indians" in 1975 and A Teacher's Ups and Downs From 1858 to 1879 in 1879. His wife's name was Mary.
He was buried in the GAR cemetery in Miami, OK. at the age of 77.
Could these be members of the same family tree?

Dear Ms. Leach,

Thank you for your comment and for visiting NCpedia! I am forwarding your inquiry to our library's Reference Team so that they can provide you with further assistance. They will be able to give you some pointers for your research. A staff member from our library will be reaching out to you via e-mail soon.


Taylor Thompson, Government & Heritage Library

These things that i read about my ancestors are interesting and knowledgeable ... Thanks ps. her name is Anna Crews, she was a half-breed and pure at heart.


Addison Coffin recounts in detail the story of Jeremiah Hubbard giving assistance to the Cherokees in his book, "The Life and Travels of Addison Coffin", pages 42-45. You can find it for free in Google books. (The entire book is an excellent read!) In later years, Coffin was the only living person who could give an account of the visit of the two chiefs to New Garden. He was called on to go to Tahlequa, the Cherokee capital, to give evidence before the council of tribal officers.

His native american wifes name is anne crews pg. 81 Thousand Years of Hubbard History

Before I pass, I would love to figure out the riddle Our Grandmother told us young kids. Long time ago. We were her youngest grandchildren. She said someday someone would solve the riddle. So I am Still trying. She said we are Cherokee, Chickasaw, Crow, and ChocTaw. ? Here mothers name was Susan Hubbard Richards, or Richardson? Grandma talked of riding draft horses on her Grandfathers plantation in Tennesee or Kentucky. Her mother was from Horsecave Kentucky. ?

Anna Crews

Years ago, I asked if anyone knew anything about a family riddle. My Grandmother told us ( her youngest grandchildren) we were Cherokee mix, . That a Richards (son) married a Richardson ? Do You think Anna Crews could be a relative of ours? I have difficulty writing, reading, getting old. Would love to fill in the blanks, solve the riddle, before I meet our creator. My Grandmothers mothers name was Susan Hubbard Richardson, from Kentucky . Thank You.

Christina I'm in need of help I'm trying to get reconised as Huddard Indian i don't know the steps or how to get started. Can you please help?


Dear Jay,

Thank you for visiting NCpedia and taking a few minutes to ask your question.  I am also forwarding this reply to the email address you provided.

Here are some resources that you might find helpful:

1. The Bureau of Indian Affairs has resource pages to help you investigate your rights and heritage.  The site has a link to a document you may want to consult:  the U.S. Dept. of the Interior's "A Guide to Tracing American Indian & Alaska Native Ancestry."  The document has a section on p. 4 dealing with the process for enrollment in federally recognized tribes --

Here is the link to the Bureau of Indian Affairs resource page with numerous links to helpful information --  

The Tribal Leaders Directory can be found at You will also find contact information for the Bureau of Indian Affairs and can call them if you have additional questions.

2.  Link to the U.S. Department of the Interior page on the “Tribal Enrollment Process” --

3.  Link to lists of Federal and State Recognized Tribes --

If you need additional help locating other resources, please feel free to post back a comment here on NCpedia. 

I hope this information helps!

Kelly Agan, Government & Heritage Library

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