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Alton H. Hopkins Collection of St. Simons Island Beach Case Records

Alton H. Hopkins Collection of St. Simons Island Beach Case Records

Descriptive Summary

Title: Alton H. Hopkins Collection of St. Simons Island Beach Case Records
Creator: Hopkins, Alton H.
Inclusive Dates: 1933-2005
Bulk Dates: 1967-2005
Language: English
Extent: 11 box(es) (12.25 linear feet, 2 oversize, 2 sound recordings)
Collection Number: RBRL/338
Repository: Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies

Collection Description

Historical Note

The records in this collection were created during a series of litigations that occurred over the land ownership for beach front property located on St. Simons Island, Georgia. The litigation was extensive and included civil actions, a jury trial, and appeals to the Georgia Supreme Court. The Hopkins family, represented by attorney Rhett Tanner, ultimately prevailed. An Atlanta lawyer named Morton Rolleston, Jr. represented the other interests, the Cherry family from Atlanta and the Mobley family in Brunswick, Georgia. Additional litigation over the beach front property would follow as members of the Hopkins family filed suit against various land developers over disagreements with the partitoning of the property. Those additional cases include Hamby v. Hopkins, Wiedemeyer v. Hopkins, and Hopkins v. Curry. Attorney Alton H. Hopkins, who was the main representative for the Hopkins family, had previously kept in his possession the case files that make up this collection.

Scope and Content

This collection consists of records documenting the history of litigation over property ownership and development on St. Simons Island, Georgia between 1967 and 2005. Court cases included in the collection are Cherry and Mobley v. Hopkins, Coast House v. Cherry and Rolleston / Cherry v. Rolleston, Hamby v. Hopkins, Wiedmeyer v. Hopkins, and Hopkins v. Curry. Records in the collection include legal documents such as briefs, transcripts, contracts, and exhibit materials; notes; correspondence; newspaper clippings; land and tax records; plats; maps; drawings; photographs; and audiovisual recordings.

Organization and Arrangement

Arranged in six series: Series I. Ashmore Case; Series II. Cherry, Mobley v. Hopkins; Series III. Coast House v. Cherry and Rolleston / Cherry v. Rolleston; Series IV. Hamby v. Hopkins; Series V. Wiedemeyer v. Hopkins; and Series VI. Hopkins v. Curry.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

This collection contains audiovisual materials. Reference copies of the audiovisual recordings are available upon request. Research requests will be filled as soon as possible and will be dependent upon the condition of the recordings.

Preferred citation

Alton H. Hopkins Collection of St. Simons Beach Case Records, Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Georgia, 30602-1641.

Copyright Information

Before material from collections at the Richard B. Russell Library may be quoted in print, or otherwise reproduced, in whole or in part, in any publication, permission must be obtained from (1) the owner of the physical property, and (2) the holder of the copyright. It is the particular responsibility of the researcher to obtain both sets of permissions. Persons wishing to quote from materials in the Russell Library collection should consult the Director. Reproduction of any item must contain a complete citation to the original.

Finding Aid Publication

Finding Aid prepared by Tom Batcha, Agozie Onyirimba, and Brandon Pieczko, August 2018.

Related Materials and Subjects

Subject Terms

Briefs -- Georgia.
Georgia -- Superior Court.
Georgia. Court of Appeals.
Georgia. Supreme Court.
Land tenure -- Law and legislation -- Georgia
Public lands -- Georgia.
Saint Simons Island (Ga. : Island)
Watershed management -- Georgia.
Zoning -- Georgia.

Related Collections in this Repository

Georgia Environmental Oral History Project

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing


Series I. Ashmore Case, 1967-1979

This series contains notes, correspondence, newspaper articles, and transcripts from the Ashmore Beach litigation cases (State of Georgia v. Evans and Mitchell Industries, Inc. and Sea Palms, Inc.) pertaining to development of the East End Subdivision on St. Simons Island between 1967 and 1975.
During the initial case (Civil Action No. 14531), the defendant claimed ownership of coastal land east of Beach Road that had been mapped as being between the high and low water mark of the ocean. The court ruled against the defendant and the case was later appealed by Jack P. Ashmore, Jr. (Civil Action No. 30176 and No. 30177).
11Newspaper Clippings, 1973-1978
12Pleadings - Civil Action 14531, 1973-1974
13Correspondence, 1967-1979
14Charles D. Bruce, et al - Land Registration, 1977-1979
15Pleadings - Civil Action 14532, 1974
16Supreme Court Briefs - Case No. 30176 and 30177 , 1975
17Supreme Court Briefs - Civil Action 14531 and 14532, 1974
18Clippings, 1973-1978

Series II. Cherry, Mobley v. Hopkins, 1933-1990

This series contains legal documents and other records from the 1986 Superior Court case (Civil Action No. 26258 and 26448) and 1988 Georgia Supreme Court appeal (Appeal 44687) of Rebecca Wight Cherry (daughter of Ward Wight, Sr. and owner of lot known as Camellia Court), Florie Mobley (owner of motel next to Camellia Court known as Craft Court) v. Pauline Hopkins (executor of the estate of J. Hunter Hopkins), Alton H. Hopkins, and Elizabeth H. Kidd (executor of the estate of Robert R. Hopkins).
By the 1980s, the ocean had retreated from the Cherry and Mobley land lots causing the accretion of approximately 1000 feet of land between the original property line (as platted in 1911) and the then current high water mark. Cherry and Mobley claimed ownership of the accreted land since it accreted from their property. Hopkins, et al. also claimed ownership of the accreted land as heirs of the developer of the East End Subdivision. The East End Subdivision was developed in the early 1900s by Robert R. Hopkins, Sr. and his son, J. Hunter Hopkins. Elizabeth Hopkins Kidd, daughter of Robert R. Hopkins, Sr., became executor of the estate when her father died in 1936. In May 1985, Florie Mobley sold lots 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, and 55 (aka Crafts Court) to Coast House Ltd. and Sandease Ltd. Rebecca Wight Cherry owned 25% undivided interest in the adjoining lots, 56 and 57, next to Mobley. The warranty deed did not provide the buyer any interest in or recreational easement to the accreted land.

Subseries A. 1986 Court Case, 1983-1988

19Miscellaneous Matters East End Subdivision, 1971-1983
110R.R. Hopkins Estate and J. Hunter Hopkins, Jr - Documents, 1967-1972
111Appraisal Of 9 Acres, East End Subdivision, 1984
112Rolleston v. Sea Island Properties, Inc. - Civil Action 22060, 1983-1985
113Glynn County Board Of Tax Assessors - Reevaluation, 1983, 1983-1986
114Pleadings - Civil Case 26258 and 26448, 1983-1985
115Hopkins (Re: Partition), 1987-1989
116Hopkins/Cherry Correspondence #2, 1987
117Appellees' Brief Prep , 1884-1986
118Hopkins/Cherry (Related Apppeals), 1987
119Hopkins/Cherry Correspondence #1, 1985-1986
21Appeal Cases 35333, 35334, 35335, 1979
22Pre-Trial Order, 1984-1986
23Decisions, 1985
24Law And Related Cases, 1985
25Cherry/Hopkins Trial Photographs, 1986
26Proposed Zoning Ordinances, 1973
27Judicial Decisions, Date Unknown
28Correspondence - Rolleston v. Hopkins, et al., 1987-1989
29Appeal Documents, 1988
210Clippings - Rolleston v. Hopkins, 1988
211Miscellaneous Documents, 1974-1986
212Rolleston v. Hopkins - Glynn Superior Court - Civil Action 87-01632-3, 1987-1989
213Correspondence - Surpeme Court - Mobley & Rolleston v. Hopkins, et al, 1988
214Correspondence - Mobley v. Hopkins, et al., 1987-1988
215Ward Wright, Jr et al. - Motion For Intervention, 1985
216Marshlands Protection Act, 1984
217Mobley v. Hopkins - Glynn Superior Court - Civil Action x87-01511, 1987
218Pleadings - Rolleston v. Hopkins Surpeme Court Case, 1987-1988
219Pleadings - Mobley v. Hopkins Surpeme Court, 1988
220Withington, et al. v. Glynn County, et al. Glynn County Superior Court, 1987
221Mobley v. Curry, Jones, First Federal, Davis, et al. - Glynn Superior Court No. 28597, 1985
222Miller, Williams, Olsen - Motion To Intervene, 1985
223Cherry v. Hopkins - Correspondence from May 9, 1985, 1985-1989
224PreTrail - Civil Action 26258, 1986
225Affidavit of Elizabeth Hopkins Kidd, 1984
226East End Subdivision - 12/85 - Correspondence, 1983-1986
227Summary Judgment Motion, 1985
228Correspondence fom Tanner to Hopkins, 1986
229Shore Protection Act of 1978, 1978
230Proposed State Legislation, 1972-1978
31Hopkins/Cherry Trial Exhibits, 1984
32Hopkins/Cherry Transcript To Trial Volume 1, 1986
33Hopkins/Cherry Transcript To Trial Volume 2, 1986
34Hopkins/Cherry Transcript To Trial Volume 3, 1986
35Case Correspondence - 1, 1987
36Case Correspondence - 2, 1987
37Case Documentation, 1989
38Glynn County Superior Court - Civil Action 26285 and 26448, 1986
39Transcript Of PreTrail Hearing, 1986-04-01
310Transcript On MSJ And PreTrail Hearing, 1986-05-16
311Pretrial Order, 1986
312Miscellaneous Notes, 1986
313Mrs. Cherry, 1986
314Mrs. Mobley, 1986
315Alva B. Lines, 1986
316Trial Notes, 1986
317Pleadings Drafts, 1986
318Law - Cases Listed In Pretrial Order, 1986
319Agreements, etc., 1986
320Hopkins Documents, Extra Copies, 1986

Subseries B. 1988 Appeal, 1933-1990

41Depositions, 1987
42Rebecca Cherry, Plantiff v. Hunter Hopkins and Alton Hopkins, Defendants, 1986
43Craft's Ocean Court - East End Subdivision, 1986
44Plantiff's Motion For Summary Judgment, 1987
45Motion For Appeal - Documentation (#1), 1987
46Motion For Appeal - Documentation (#2), 1987
47Pretrial Documents, 1987
48Rolleston - Appeal
49Depositions, 1985
410St. Simons Coast Guard Station, 1989
411Warranty Deeds, 1986
412Dept. of Natural Resources / GA Court of Appaels Case #A89A104, 1988-1989
413Research Of Law, 1982
414Survey East End Subdivision, 1983
415Respondent, 1987
416Rules Of ALJ [Administrative Law Judge], 1980
417Request for Review, 1988
418Affidavits, 1988
419Petitioner's Appeal To Fulton County Superior Court, 1988
420Maps and Plats, 1987
421Correspondence - Civil Action D-54753
422Notes, 1986 December
423Orders of ALJ [Administrative Law Judge], 1987
424Sales Information - Watermark Property, 1987
425Pretrial Order, 1988
426Assessment of Attorney Fees, 1988
427Extra copies of exhibits
428Exhibits - CA#26258, 1988
51Motions #1, 1987-1993
52Motions #2, 1987-1989
53Correspondence, 1988-1996
54Appeal - Case 44687, 1987
55Research on Res Judicata, 1987
56Transcripts - Civil Action 87-01632-3, 1988
57Hopkins/Cherry Pleadings File, 1985-1986
58Appellant's Brief - Case 46044, 1988
59Appellant's Brief - Case 46098, 1988
5102nd Appeal - Case 43676, 1986
5111st Appeal - Case 41649, 1984-1985
512Supplemental Brief 41649, 1985
513[Exhibits: House of Representatives Documents Vol. 31 76th Congress, 3rd Session, Jan 3,1940-Jan 3,1941; Document No. 820 (US Army Beach Erosion Study, St. Simons Island, GA) 1985 Aerial Photo], 1940-1941, 1985
1[Exhibits: Maps, Plat Maps, and Aerial Photographs], 1986
2[Exhibit: Topographical Map T-5123], 1933

Series III. Coast House v. Cherry and Rolleston / Cherry v. Rolleston, 1987-1996

This series contains transcripts and other legal records from court cases involving Rebecca Wight Cherry and Morton Rolleston, Jr. including the 1988 Superior Court case Coast House Ltd. and Sandease Ltd. v. Cherry and Rolleston (Civil Action D970033) and the 1996 appeals (Appeal A97A005 and A97A056).
514Cherry v. Rolleston - Civil Action D970033, Appeal A97A005 and A97A056, 1985-1997
515Appeals Case A97A0056 and A97A0051, 1994-1997
516Coast House v. Cherry and Rolleston - Civil Action D-27179, 1994
517Court Transcripts #1, Undated
518Court Transcripts #2, Undated

Series IV. Hamby v. Hopkins, 1987-2000

This series contains transcripts, appraisals, contracts, correspondence, newspaper articles, notes, affidavits, and other legal records relating to the 1998 case (Case No. 97-02223) and 2000 case (Case No. 98-01747) Hamby v. Hopkins.
Denval Hamby was the developer of Coast Cottages and The Villas at Coast Cottages. He purchased a portion (Lot 57 Extension, aka Tract 4A) of the estate of Robert R. Hopkins; however, he was not able to reach an agreement with Alton H. Hopkins and the other members of Hopkins family members to purchase their portions of the estate. Ownership of the Hopkins estate was proportioned as follows: Alton Hopkins (12.50%); Mrs. Alton Hopkins aka Virginia Hopkins (12.50%); Mrs. J Hunter Hopkins aka Pauline A. Hopkins (25%); Winifred Fanning and Earl Lynn Kidd, co-administrators of the will of Robert R. Hopkins (50%). The court ultimately ordered the sale of the Lot 57 Extension.

Subseries A. First Court Case

61East End Subdivision: Appraisals, 1994-1998
62East End Subdivision: Wetlands, 1988-1991
63East End Subdivision: Correspondence, 1993-2000
64Correspondence - East End, 1985-1994
65East End Subdivision: Correspondence, 1995-1997
66Paul H. Sanders, 1994-1997
67Title Matters - J. Hunter Hopkins, Jr., 1959-1988
68Plantiff's Complaint and Hopkins' Response, 1996
69East End Subdivision: Newspaper Articles, 1970-1994
610East End Subdivision: 1993 Marketing, 1990-1993
611Newspaper Articles - East End Subdivision, 1980-2000
612St. Simons Brokers, Inc., 1994
613Correspondence, 1992-1993
614Coastal Developments, 1985-1994
615East End Subdivision - Surveys, 1991
616Notes, 1997-1998
617Purchase and Sale Of Lot 58 and 59/ EES - Hancock Development Company, 1997-1998
618Property Sales, 1993-1998
619East End Subdivision - Contracts, 1984-1997
620Sales Contracts, 1995-1998
621Miles' Sales Contract #4, 1997
622Hopkins' 1st Interrogatories to Plantiff: Plantiff's Response, 1998
623Modified View Easement, 1995-1998
624Miscellaneous, 1982-1999
625Hopkins Motion to Dismiss Plantiff's Complaint, 1998
626Response of Defendants to Plantiff's Motion for Prompt Hearing on Statutory Partition Action, 1998
627Motion for Judgment on Pleadings, 1998
71Coast Cottages - Notes and Newspaper Clippings, 1991-1996
72Proposed Deed - Establish 70/30 Ownership, 1988
73Plats and Surveys, 1994
74Maps And Plats - East End Subdivision, 1972
75R.R. Hopkins Estate: Conveyances To/From Hamby, 1999
76Lee Testimony in Cherry v. Rolleston , 1986
77Hopkins 1st Response for Production to Plantiff / Plantiff's Response, 1998
78Motion to Compel and Brief, 1998
79Exhibits/Complaint, 1997
710East End Subdivision - Title, 1992-1995
711Correspondence, 1998
712New Subdivision Plat, 1997
713Legal Research #97-02223, 1997
714East End Subdivision Beach Drive, 1997-2001
715Regulations (Part 1), 1984-1989
716Regulations (Part 2), 1889-1990
717Discovery, 1999
718Exhibits, 1995
719Exhibits and Correspondence, 1999
720Plats, 2001
721Notes #98-01747, 1998
722Tax Documents and Correspondence, 1998-1999
723Closing Documents, 2000
724Defendants' Response No. 2, 1999-12-30
725Defendants' Response No. 3, 1999-12-30
726Defendants' Response No. 4, 1999-12-30
727Defendants' Response No. 5, 1999-12-30
728Defendants' Response No. 7, 1999-12-30
729Defendants' Response No. 8, 1999
730Defendants' Response No. 9, 1999-12-30
731Defendants' Response No. 10, 1999-12-30
732Defendants' Response No. 11, 1999-12-30
733Affidavits and Exhibits #98-01747, 2000
734Civil Action No. 97-02223, 1997
735Case 98-01747 (1 of 3), 2000
81Case 98-01747 (2 of 3), 1999
82Case 98-01747 (3 of 3), 2000
83Hamby Newspaper Clippings, 2003

Subseries B. Second Court Case

84Maps and Plans, 1999
85Correspondence, 1999
86Title Matters, 1983-1995
87East End Subdivision - Advalorem Taxes, 1988-1998
88Briefs and Hearings, 2000
89Rhett Tanner, 1986-1993
810J. Hunter Hopkins, Jr. 706 Return, 1998
811Voluntary Dismissal and Joint Voluntary Dismissal, 2000
812Motion to Dismiss Respondents Appeal to Supreme Court, 2000
813Plantiff's Complaint, 1998
814East End Subdivision / DNR Lots 54 & 55, 1998-1999
815Pleadings, 2000
816Lot 57 / Motion for Severance & Response, 1999
817Order and Notice of Appeal, 2000
818Offers and Counteroffers, 1994-1996
819Tracts 3 and 4 - Administrator's / Security Deeds, 1996-1999
820Hamby Proposal, 2000
821Hamby Development Plan, 1999
822Sales Information, 2000
823Notes, 1997
824Exhibits to Plaintiff's Complaint, 1997
825Subpoenas, 2000
826Statutes and Cases, 1999
827Lot 57, East End Subdivision , 1998
828Handwritten Note, 1999
829Memorandums of Law, 2000
830Olive Way, Park Way, Beach Drive - Agreement, 1988
831East End Subdivision - DNR Application, 1995
832Notes, undated
833Notes (Small Notepad), undated
834First Hamby Case - Court Records Civil Case #97-02223, 1997-1999
91Order for Case #98-01747 / Copy of Civil Action #97-02223 also included., 2000
92Case #98-01747 12/30/1999, 1999
93Case #98-01747 01/07/2000, 2000
94Case #98-01747 02/24/2000, 2000
95Amended Notice for Appeal, 2000-2006
96Supreme Court Case SA00A0994 - Brief, 2000
97Ussery/Rule Division-Lot 57 Chart, 2000
98Affidavit - T. Parker, 2000
99Blue Print, 2000
910Affidavit - R. Ussery, 2000
911Hamby's Offer to Purchase, 1998
912Legal Research, 1998
913Original Discovery, 1999
914Pleadings, 1999

Series V. Wiedemeyer v. Hopkins, 1988-2003

This series contains contracts, surveys, notes, correspondence, maps, photographs, audio recordings, and other records from the court case Wiedemeyer v. Hopkins (Civil Action No. 01-01491) concerning the sale of land from members of the Hopkins family to Robert J. Wiedmeyer, a retired doctor and builder of condominiums. At the time of the case, Wiedemeyer had purchased Lot 59 and half of Lot 58 from estate of Robert R. Hopkins, while Alton Hopkins still owned an interest in Lot 57 and the other half of Lot 58.
915Villages at Coast Cottage, 2001
916Complete Appraisal - Summary Report, 2002
917Hamby v. Hopkins / Maps and Plats, 2000
918Newsletter, 2002 Spring
919Real Estate Transactions - St Simons/Brunswick News, 1999-2001
920Hopkins v. Georgia Dept. of Natural Resources, 1987-1988
921Surveys, 1997
922Hamby v. Hopkins, Lot 57, East End Subd. / Richard Friedman, 1998-2000
923Blueprints, 1999
924Miscellaneous & Memos, 2001-2003
925Sales Contract, 2002-2003
926East End Subdivision - Negotiations with Dr. Wiedemeyer, 1999-2002
927Wiedemeyer v. Hopkins Civil Action #01-01491, 2001-2002
928Hamby v. Hopkins Civil Action # 98-01747, 1998-2000
101Lots 58 and 59 Extension / Appraisal - Summary Report , 2002-2003
102Lot 54-57 Parkway - taxes / East End Subdivision, 1999-2001
103East End Subdivision / Revetment Construction, 1991
104Photographs, 1987
105Contracts, 2003
106Depositions - Wiedemeyer, 2002
107Maps and Plats, 1999
108Sigman Deposition, 2002
109Wiedemeyer Deposition, 1999
UC RBRL/338/CS0001Dr. Wiedemeyer Re: Title Policy and Commitment for Lot 59, 1999-08-26 ( 1 sound_recording(s) )
UC RBRL/338/CS0002Dr. Wiedemeyer Swap w/w, 1999-07-12 ( 1 sound_recording(s) )
1010Dr. Robert Wiedemeyer / Correspondence, 2001
1011Pre-Trail Civil Action #01-01491, 2000
1012-13Civil Action #01-01491, 2000-2001
1014East End subdivision - Miscellaneous, 2002
1015Complaint, 2001
1016Newspaper Articles, 2002
1017Correspondence, 2002
1018Answer of Defendants, 2002
1019Legal Research, 1993-1994
1020Deposition Notices to Plantiff, 2002
1021Plantiff's 1st Interro and Request for POD, 2002
1022Plantiff's Response to Interr and Request for POD, 2002

Series VI. Hopkins v. Curry, 2003-2005

This series contains agreements, motions, contracts, correspondence, transcripts, and other legal records from the court case Hopkins v. Curry (Civil Action No. CV200050104) pertaining to the bankruptcy of Coast House Cottages and Coast House Cottages and Villas, LLC between 2003 and 2005.
In 2003, Ramsbottom Commercial Real Estate Company had considered buying property from the Hopkins/Weidemeyer group (consisting of landowners Alton Hopkins, Virginia Hopkins, Mildred Pauline Arnett Hopkins, and Dr. Robert Weidemeyer). The sale ultimately did not go through and in 2004 Coast House Cottages and Villas, LLC (managed by Ernie P. and Kay P. Curry) purchased the land from Hopkins/Weidemeyer using a loan provided by J&B Global. In 2005, the Currys defaulted on the loan, filed for bankruptcy, and the land was returned to the Hopkins/Weidemeyer group.
1023Notes, Undated
1024Note and Guaranty Of Payment, 2005
1025Fax Letter - Contract, 2003
1026Ramsbottom Agreement, 2003
1027Global Inc. Lawsuit, 2004-2005
1028Coast House Cottages Bankruptcy, 2003-2005
1029Correspondence, 2004-2005
1030Bankruptcy Court - Motion to Stay Related Cases, 2005
1031Chapter 11 - Coast House Cottages, 2005
1032Motion For Summary Judgment, 2005
1033Faxes, 2004-2005
1034Defendants' Interrogatories & Request for POD - Plantiff's Response, 2005
1035Response To Defendants' 1st Request #1, 2003
111Response To Defendants' 1st Request #2, 2003
112Response To Defendants' 1st Request #3, 2003
113Response To Defendants' 1st Request #4, 2003
114Response To Defendants' 1st Request #5, 2003
115-6Pleadings, 2005
117Motion to Extend, 2005
118Curry Contract, 2003-2004
119Miscellaneous, 2005
1110Sales Agreements, 2003