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Allison Spier

Descendents of Allison Spier claim that he was born in Hancock County, Georgia, in 1803.  Federal Census and tax records show that Spier married his wife, Mary Middlebrooks, while living in Jones County in the 1820s.  In the 1830s, he moved his growing family to Monroe County, and by 1840, the Spier family resided in Pike County with their three slaves.  Within the next ten years, Allison Spier became wealthy, entered politics, and acquired a favorable social status. 

Spier owned real estate in Pike County valued at $15,200 and 26 slaves by 1850.  Allison Spier served as an inferior court judge in Pike County.  The History of Pike County (1984) describes Spier as a very popular “strong partisan” who was a representative three times before later moving to Fayette County.  How Spier amassed his family fortune, whether through business investments or inheritance, is unclear.  However, it appears that Spier relocated to Fayette County in 1851 at the age of 47 to retire from public life and become a large-scale planter. 

Allison Spier built the Spier House shortly after the sale of the property in early 1851.  By 1860, Spier’s real estate value had doubled in the past 10 years, rising to $30,000.  His personal value was recorded at $18,000, a large amount back then.  Allison and his wife had eight sons, as recorded in the Federal Census.  They were: Alfred, John, Joseph, Benjamin F., Martin, Allison, James H., and Jackson P.  Tragically, Mary Middlebrooks Spier died on April 25, 1860 and was buried at Bethany United Methodist Church, just south of the Spier property.  One of Spier’s sons, Martin Van Buren, died fighting in the Civil War, and records suggest that his son, Joseph, suffered the same fate.  Allison Spier died shortly after the end of the Civil War on October 24, 1865.  In financial ruin because of the war, Spier’s Confederate currency lost its worth.  His freed slaves reduced his property value and left him without a working farm.  The Spier House estate was sold out of the family, perhaps due to the financial hardships felt by his surviving children.