- James Stimpert
Hopkins, Johns (19 May 1795–24 December 1873), merchant and financier, was born on a tobacco plantation in Anne Arundel County (south of Baltimore), Maryland, the son of Samuel Hopkins and Hannah Janney, farmers. The plantation was prosperous through Johns’s early years, and the family lived well. In 1807, following the direction of the Society of Friends (Quakers), Samuel freed the family’s slaves. As a result, Johns, the second of eleven children, had to leave school to help maintain the farm. Although Johns never received any further formal schooling, he had a hunger for knowledge and worked to educate himself in his spare moments. His distinctive and often misspelled first name came from his great-great-grandfather Richard Johns....