Hocker, James Monroe

1822 - 1912

Businessman, Educator and Banker.

James M. Hocker was born in Lincoln County, Kentucky on June 28, 1822.  He conducted a successful mercantile business in Hustonville, Lincoln County, Kentucky until relocating to Lexington after the Civil War.  In 1866, Mr. Hocker formed a partnership with John B. Tilford and J. W. Proctor as private banker.  Later, Mr. Hocker continued business as J. M. Hocker & Company.

In 1870, Mr. Hocker's private bank was nationalized as the Fayette National Bank, with Mr. Hocker elected the institution's Cashier.  He resigned in 1873 to form the Farmers and Traders Bank, which assumed the assets of Headley, Farra & Company (a private bank).

In addition to his banking activities, he was a founder of the Hocker Female College in 1869.  The school later became the Hamilton College and eventually consolidated into Transylvania University.  In 1882, Mr. Hocker became the manager of the Lexington Omnibus Transfer Company (operator of the horse drawn streetcar lines in Lexington).  He also formed in the 1880s J. M. Hocker & Sons, a leading insurance concern.  He died in Lexington on January 18, 1912.

William M. Ambrose, First Security National Bank & Trust Company (1835-1992), Limestone Press, Lexington, 2007.