BiographiesGenealogy Information

Biography: William Acklen born December 1802

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Madison County, Alabama


William Acklen was one of the earliest white settlers of Madison, and of the State. He was born in Tazewell, Tennessee, December 1802. His father Samuel Acklen, was a Virginian, and sheriff of Claiborne county, Tennessee, at one time. William’s mother was Elizabeth Hunt, a daughter of Capt. John Hunt, the founder of Huntsville, he settled in Madison in 1808 with his family and died there on July 25, 1826. William Acklen, the son of this worthy pair, was graduated at Greenville College, Tennessee, read law under Ebenezer Titus in Huntsville and came to the bar in 1823. Caswell R. Clifton (afterward a circuit court judge in Mississippi), Joseph Acklen, and Smith D. Hale were at separate periods the law partners of Mr. Acklen.

In 1826 he represented Madison in the house, and was four times returned; out in 1832, he was elected solicitor, a position he filled with great credit for twelve years. In 1853 he defeated Hon. Win. Fleming for State senator, and served four years. He was a hale and stout man, though disabled for some years by an accident. Physically he was well constituted, with an intellectual head, and cheerful expression. As a solicitor, he was very efficient, and as a man was honorable and energetic.

He married Louisa King, a daughter of Mr. Edmund King of Shelby county, Alabama, and lost a son at Gaines’ Mill. His brother Joseph A. S. Acklen of Virginia was federal district attorney for Alabama and his brother John Acklen sheriff of Madison. He was also the brother of Christopher Acklen of Texas; John R. H. Acklen, who died June 14, 1846, Madison County: of Sarah McGee Acklen, who died in Texas and of Palmyra J. Coleman Acklen, who died April 1860 in Madison County, Alabama.

The Acklens were descendants of the Acklens of Virginia, a branch of an old Devonshire family, who spelled the name, originally, “Acalen” and even later “Acland’ The cradle of the family was Ackland-Bolton, in Devonshire, and the founder was Hugh de Accalen. It was represented in England by Sir Thomas Dyke A Bart, who died in 1876. Later the head of the family was Sir C. Thomas Acland.

Mr. Acklen died on May 11, 1872. His wife Louisa died July 1, 1862. Both are buried at Maple Hill Cemetery, Huntsville, Madison County, Alabama.

They had two known children;

  1. Theodore Acklen m. Harriet Morton Gooch
  2. William King Acklen (Jun 8, 1842 -Jun 27, 1862), killed at Gaines’ Mill.


  1. Alabama, her history, resources, war record, and public men: from 1540 to 1872 By Willis Brewer
  2. History of Alabama and dictionary of Alabama biography, Volume 3 By Thomas McAdory Owen, Marie Bankhead Owen
  3. Find A Grave Memorial # 10968596 # 10968595 # 10968599 # 8758352 # 8758377 # 10959162 # 10959174



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  1. […] Madison County, Alabama and died November 18, 1870. at Huntsville, Alabama. He was the son of William and Louisa (King) Acklen and the grandson of Samuel and Elizabeth (Hunt) Acklen. and of Edmund King; […]

  2. Wonder if my Moytoy family knew him? so much i dont know!

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