Thursday, January 14, 2021

Sion B. Hawkins: Georgia’s 25th Adjutant General

 By Maj. William Carraway

Historian, Ga. Army National Guard


Sion B. Hawkins assumed office as the 25th Adjutant General of Georgia January 14, 1941. The 53-year-old lieutenant colonel of the Atlanta-based 179th Field Artillery Regiment was appointed by Governor-Elect Eugene Talmadge January 5 to succeed Brig. Gen. Marion Williamson.

Hawkins was born Aug. 19, 1887 in Americus Georgia. Hawkins began his career in the Georgia National Guard in 1904[1] when he enlisted as a private. Hawkins rose steadily through the enlisted ranks while attending college. He graduated from the University of Georgia in 1908 and went to work as a bookkeeper for a cotton company in Americus while maintaining his membership in the National Guard.[2] Following the declaration of war against Germany April 6, 1917, Hawkins entered officer training camp and was commissioned a 2nd lieutenant August 14.

2nd Lt. Sion Hawkins in 1917. Georgia Guard Archives

Hawkins entered federal service Aug. 15, 1917 and was assigned to the 321st Machine Gun Battalion, 82nd Infantry Division. Promoted to 1st lieutenant February 6, Hawkins served overseas from May 2, 1918 and participated in the engagements of Lorraine, St. Mihiel and The Meuse Argonne. Returning to the United States in May 1919, he was discharged from federal service June 14.[3]

Upon appointment by Governor Talmadge, Hawkins was promoted to brigadier general. During his tenure as adjutant general Hawkins also served as acting director of selective service.

Hawkins served as Georgia’s Adjutant General until Jan. 12, 1943 when newly elected governor Ellis Arnell appointed Brig. Gen. Clark Howell to succeed him.

Hawkins died December 15, 1948 at the age of 61. He is buried in Oak Grove Cemetery in Americus.[4]




[1] Secretary of War, National Guard Register for 1939 (National Guard Bureau: Washington D.C. November 1, 1939), 301

[2] Year: 1910; Census Place: Militia District 789, Sumter, Georgia; Roll: T624_213; Page: 5A; Enumeration District: 0109; FHL microfilm: 1374226

[3] Ancestry,com Georgia, U.S., World War I Service Cards, 1917-1919 [Database online]. Provo UT, 2013.

[4] "Sion Boone Hawkins (1887-1948) - Find A Grave...," Find a Grave, accessed January 4, 2021,