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Hogg, Thomas Devereux

by Elizabeth Reid Murray, 1988

1 Oct. 1823–30 Sept. 1904

Photograph of the Hogg House in Raleigh, 1900. Image from the North Carolina Museum of History.Thomas Devereux Hogg, businessman and philanthropist, was born in Raleigh. His father, Gavin Hogg (1788–1835), a native of Wick, Caithness, Scotland, settled in Raleigh after having lived in Bertie County. His mother was the former Mary Ann Bayard Johnson (1802–30) of Stratford, Conn., a descendant of Samuel Johnson, first president of Kings College, and of his son William Samuel Johnson, first president of the school after it became Columbia University.

Hogg obtained his early education at the Episcopal School for Boys (later St. Mary's School and Junior College), Raleigh, and at Isaac Webb's preparatory school in Middletown, Conn., where Rutherford B. Hayes was a classmate. After graduation in 1844 from the College of New Jersey (later Princeton University), he obtained the M.D. degree from the Jefferson Medical College of Philadelphia, although he did not remain active in the practice of medicine.

A resident of Raleigh thereafter, except for a short time in New Orleans, Hogg was, according to his obituary, "an active participant in every movement which tended to the upbuilding of his state." A major stockholder in the Raleigh and Gaston Railroad, completed in 1840, he was instrumental in securing financial aid for that company as well as for the Wilmington and Weldon Railroad at crucial periods in their development. In the 1850s he promoted the proposed Greenville and Raleigh and other plank roads. Appointed by Governor David Reid in 1853 to the board of commissioners for the State Hospital for the Insane (later renamed Dorothea Dix Hospital), Hogg was a member of the three-man executive committee during construction of the institution's first buildings. As an incorporator, director, and stockholder of the Raleigh Gaslight Company, chartered in 1859, he spearheaded the company's successful effort to furnish Raleigh with gas. The same year a group of citizens, who according to the Raleigh Standard preferred "the brightness of gaslight to the dripping dimness of the olden style," presented him a silver pitcher inscribed "as a mark of their appreciation of his public spirit and enterprise." Earlier he had also been a Raleigh city commissioner, representing the Eastern Ward in 1852 and serving as a member of a special "Fire and Water Committee," which, after the widely destructive fire of December 1851, reorganized and augmented Raleigh's fire department and improved the water supply.

In January 1860 Hogg was elected first president of the Oak City Savings Bank, chartered by the General Assembly of 1858–59. In April 1861, his fellow commissioners elected him president of the board of the Chatham Railroad (later the Raleigh and Augusta). Among other antebellum interests was his partnership with Robert W. Haywood in the Raleigh Planing Mills, which began operating near Raleigh in the summer of 1853. In the federal census of 1860, Hogg was listed as owning 22,000 acres of land in Wake County.

Hogg opposed separation from the Union until North Carolina seceded; he was then commissioned a major and served from September 1861 throughout the Civil War as chief commissary of the Subsistence Department of North Carolina. In his brief postwar report on its operations, he wrote that before the end of the war his department was "feeding about half of Lee's army," a statement with which editor-historian Walter Clark and others concurred.

His business interests after the war included grape culture in a vineyard near Raleigh owned jointly with Henry Mahler, and a partnership in a Baltimore distillery with James L. Bryan, his late wife's uncle. The state of North Carolina appointed him inspector of the North Carolina Railroad in 1871, following lease of the line to the Richmond and Danville Railroad Company.

When Mayor Joseph Separk died in office in 1875, the Raleigh board of aldermen elected Hogg to succeed him. He declined, reported the Raleigh Sentinel, "on the ground that his private engagements would not admit of his giving that attention which the office would require." He served the following year, however, as a member of the board, representing the First (Northeast) Ward. For some years thereafter he advocated, albeit unsuccessfully, the building of a steel roadway for vehicles in Raleigh's streets, which remained unpaved until after 1886. Towards the end of his life, he served as a delegate—appointed by Governor Thomas Holt—to the Nicaraguan Canal Convention of 2 June 1892 in St. Louis, Mo.

On 13 Dec. 1848, Hogg married Janet Bryan (9 Feb. 1831–22 Feb. 1855), of Plymouth, the daughter of John Stevens and Lucy Davis Haywood Bryan and granddaughter of Sherwood Haywood of Raleigh. In 1850 they built the residence that until 1962 occupied the entire square on which the Archives and History/State Library building was constructed in 1969. Mrs. Hogg died shortly after the birth of their third daughter Lucy, who later married Isaac Foote Dortch and was the mother of eight children. The oldest daughter, Sally, did not marry; the second, Janet, married Colin Hawkins but had no children.

An Episcopalian, Hogg was a lifelong member of Christ Church, Raleigh, where he served as senior warden and treasurer for a number of years. Politically, he was a Whig. He was the author of two short treatises on mining interests and municipal improvements; copies of both are in the North Carolina Collection, University of North Carolina Library, Chapel Hill.

An accident claimed the life of Hogg in Raleigh; he was buried in Oakwood Cemetery from Christ Church. Portrait miniatures, a daguerreotype, and photographs of Hogg are in the possession of his granddaughter, Miss Elizabeth Dortch of Raleigh, who also owns the 1859 silver pitcher described above.


Moses N. Amis, Historical Raleigh (1913).

Levi Branson, Branson's North Carolina Business Directory, 1877–1878 .

Christ Church (Raleigh), Centennial Ceremonies . . . 1821 (1922).

Christ Church: 150 Years at the Heart of the City (1971).

Walter Clark, comp., History of the Raleigh and Augusta Air-Line Railroad Co. (1877).

Miss Elizabeth Dortch, Raleigh (interviews, 1972, 1975).

Hogg Family Bible and other family papers (in the possession of Miss Elizabeth Dortch, Raleigh).

Gavin Hogg Papers (Manuscript Department, Duke University Library, Durham).

Thomas Devereux Hogg Papers (Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina Library, Chapel Hill).

Thomas D. Hogg Papers and Marriage Bonds of Wake County (North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh).

North Carolina Laws (Private), 1858–1859, c. 74, c. 108, c. 109, 1860–1861, c. 129.

Raleigh Daily Sentinel, 4 Sept. 1875.

Raleigh Morning Post, 2 Oct. 1904.

Raleigh News and Observer, 1 Oct. 1904, 1 Aug. 1954.

Raleigh North Carolina Standard, 14 Dec. 1859, 18 Jan. 1860.

Raleigh Register (weekly), 21 Jan. 1852.

Raleigh Register (semiweekly), 16 Dec. 1848, 4 Jan., 30 Apr. 1851, 28 Jan., 11 Feb., 18 Feb., 8 Mar. 1852, 9 Mar., 8 Oct. 1853, 24 Feb., 17 Nov. 1855, 15 Mar. 1856, 19 Mar. 1859, 18 Jan. 1860.

Raleigh Times, 1 Oct. 1904, 11 July 1957.

Additional Resources:

Thomas Devereux Hogg Papers, 1779-1910 (collection no. 00344). The Southern Historical Collection. Louis Round Wilson Special Collections Library. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.,Thomas_Devereux.html (accessed January 9, 2013).

Williams, Jesse Lynch. "Thomas Devereux Hogg '44" Princeton Alumni Weekly 5, no. 11 (December 10, 1904). 178. (accessed January 9, 2013).

Amis, Moses N. Historical Raleigh. With sketches of Wake County (from 1771) and its important towns; descriptive, biographical, educational, industrial, religious. Raleigh, N.C.: Commercial Print. Co. 1913. 71-72. (accessed January 9, 2013).

Hogg, Thomas Devereux. 1992. Thomas Devereux Hogg papers, 1829-1910, Halifax, Martin, and Wake counties, North Carolina. Bethesda, MD: University Publications of America.

Carroll, Grady L. E. They lived in Raleigh: some leading personalities from 1792 to 1892 : with introduction and appendices. Raleigh, N.C.: Southeastern Copy Center. 1977.

Hogg, Thomas D. 1894. Northwestern mining interests. Raleigh: Uzzell.

Image Credits:

Barden, Albert. "Photograph, Accession #: H.19XX.488.7." 1900. North Carolina Museum of History.

Origin - location: