William Alexander Hoke, lawyer, legislator, and chief justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court, of Lincolnton, Lincoln County, N.C., was the son of John Franklin Hoke (1821-1888) and Catherine Wilson Alexander Hoke (d. 1857), brother of Nancy Childs Hoke (1856-1893) and Sallie Badger Hoke (d. 1914), husband of Mary McBee Hoke (d. 1920), and father of Mary Hoke Slaughter.
The collection includes letters, financial and legal papers, genealogical papers, and other materials pertaining to William Alexander Hoke and members of the related Alexander, Henderson, McBee, and Wilson families. Included is material on 19th-century North Carolina politics; an antebellum gold mining operation; John Franklin Hoke's involvement in the Mexican-American War; slavery, including slave bills of sale; the service of family members and others in the Confederate army and navy; the homefront during the Civil War; problems of Reconstruction, including references to activities of the Ku Klux Klan; the legal career of William Alexander Hoke; the brief theatrical career of Laura Alexander in the 1870s; and Sallie Badger Hoke's travels to Europe and Egypt in the 1880s. Also included a notebook belonging to H.T. Guion with records of the North Carolina State Troops, Company B, 1st Regiment Artillery, North Carolina land records dating back to the 1750s, and legal documents and financial items relating to family members. Correspondents include North Carolina Governor David L. Swain; Frances Christine Fisher Tiernan, the novelist who wrote as Christian Reid; Zebulon Vance; and Josephus Daniels.