Story of Mahalia Jackson Husband & Married Life: Did She Have Children?

By Aarone Hernandez | Published on: March 14, 2024 | Updated on: March 14, 2024
Facts checked by editors at A-List Arena
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Late American gospel singer Mahalia Jackson had been married twice. But her marriage to both her husbands Sigmond Galloway and Isaac Hockenhull ended in a divorce. 

So, what was the reason behind her divorce? What about Mahalia Jackson’s children? Did she have any biological kids? In this article, we will also talk about her relationship with Russell & Martin.

Let’s get started.

Who Were Mahalia Jackson’s Husbands? Did She Get Married?

Mahalia was married twice. She was married to her first husband Isaac Hockenhull in 1936 and got a divorce in 1941. Later she married for the second time to her second husband Sigmond Galloway. They walked down the aisle in 1964 and got a divorce in 1967.

Mahalia Jackson Second Husband Sigmond
Mahalia Jackson With Her Second Husband Sigmond

Want to know in detail about her second hubby Sigmond Galloway, read this article

Who Was Mahalia Jackson’s First Husband?

Mahalia’s first hubby Isaac “Ike” Hockenhull was a chemist, who at that point during the Depression happened to work as a postman. 

Isaac was a Fisk University & Tuskegee Institute graduate who was 10 years senior to Mahalia. Well, after meeting in 1935, the duo dated for a year before they finally decided to get married in 1936. 

After the wedding, the couple worked together on homemade shampoos and skincare products which they sold in the market until she made it into the music world.

Why Did Mahalia And Isaac Divorce?

The major reason they divorced was that Isaac wanted her to sing secular music rather than religious music which disagreed with. She even left good offers from singers like Louis Armstrong and Earl “Fatha” Hines as she never wanted to take up secular music. This created a strain in their relationship.

Also, Isaac’s severe gambling habit was the other reason they divorced.

Did Mahalia Jackson Have Children?

Unfortunately, Mahalia Jackson who had four siblings didn’t have any biological children. However, she had adopted a boy named John who she had found on the street. Though it is unclear if the adoption was official, she always raised him as her own kid. She didn’t have any daughter as rumors have it.

Mahalia Jackson Singing: She Never Had Children
Mahalia Jackson Singing: She Never Had Children

As per the reports, they didn’t have kids because she suffered from the hysterectomy. Though she didn’t have kids, she was very much active in philanthropic work for children. She even helped provide education to black children in Virginia and several other charities related to kids.

What Happened To Her Adopted Son john?

Unfortunately, no details about John have been made public apart from the fact that Mahalia had adopted her. Also since her death in 1972, he remained completely away from the media.