Spencer Hooper Promissory Note/Bond 1846
Sixty days after date, I promise to pay Alexander Wiley, or order, the sum of six hundred and fifty dollars, to be applied to the use and benefit, to wit: Alexander Hooper, Ann Hooper, Ziphania Hooper, Martha Hooper and Susan Hooper, who are at this time living with my father, Woodliff Hooper. Witness my hand and seal, this 30 November, 1846.
Spencer Hooper, [Seal]
Witness: John K. Graves
Source: Oliver v. Wiley, 75 N.C. 320 (1876).
Spencer Hooper apparently married a Mary Wiley, but her relationship to Alexander Wiley (to whom the $600 was promised) has not been established. The beneficiaries named are children of Spencer Hooper (and presumably of Mary Wiley Hooper). Why the children were living with Woodliff (Woodlief) Hooper, father of Spencer Hooper, in 1846 is not known. Perhaps Mary Wiley Hooper had died. Spencer Hooper was in Missouri by 1850 and never returned to Caswell County.
A dispute over the promissory note/bond set forth above reached the North Carolina Supreme Court in 1876 and even involved the notorious Frank. A. Wiley, who purportedly lured John Walter (Chicken) Stephens to his death in 1870.
This helps. Note the reference to the "[c]hildren of Spencer Hooper by his first wife . . . ."
Woodlief Hooper - Will - written 22 April 1853. Daughter Elizabeth and her husband Warren Holcomb already recd their share. Children of Spencer Hooper by his first wife to have their share. Sons Benjamin Hooper and Samuel Hooper to have negroes in their possession. Bond forgiven of Mary Ferguson. Daughter Barbara Evans and her children Amanda and Samuel to have land where testator now lives also a share of negroes which came from Henderson estate. Martha Neal and Susan Corbet to have negroes in their possession. Rest of property divided equally to Samuel Hooper, Martha Neal, Susan Corbet, Mary Ferguson, Barbara Evans, and children of Spencer Hooper by first marriage. Exec: Samuel Hooper and Solomon Corbet. Wit: N. M. Roan, A. Gunn.
Inventory and sales of property of Woodlief Hooper deceased sold 24 May 1853 to various listed purchasers.
Source: Caswell County North Carolina Will Books 1843-1868, Katharine Kerr Kendall (1986) at 61.
Why did Spencer Hooper not come back to Caswell County for his children? As Spencer Hooper married Mary Wiley, his first wife, 6 October 1832, in Caswell County, presumably their oldest child would have been 18 years or so old in 1850. Spencer Hooper not only did not come back for them, he married again and started another family in Missouri:
1850 United States Federal Census
Name: Spencer Hooper
Birth Year: abt 1808
Birthplace: North Carolina
Home in 1850: Campbell, Greene, Missouri, USA
Family Number: 166
Spencer Hooper 42
Harriet Hooper 30
Charles Hooper 4
Robt E Hooper 2
The second wife of Spencer Hooper was Harriet F. Cain:
Missouri Marriage Records
Name: Spencer Hooper
Spouse: Harriet F. Cain
Marriage Date: 6 Feb 1844
Note that they married two years before Spencer Hooper promised money to take care of the children by his first wife. None of that money was ever paid.
The children had been living with the father of Spencer Hooper, Woodlief (Woodley) Hooper, who died 1853 in Caswell County. Presumably, as the promissory note was made to an Alexander Wiley, that Wiley was to care of the children.