Francis White Johnson.

A history of Texas and Texans (Volume 4) online

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home, and he has resided continuously on the old home-
stead on which he initiated his independent career. He
has develojied the same into one of the well improved
and valuable properties of Dallas county, and in the
midst of the insistent demands of a signally industrious
and prolifii^ career he has shown an unselfish and helpful
interest in the furtherance of measures and enterprises
conserving the general progress and prosperity of the
community. Never a seeker of public office, he has
quietly pursued the even tenor of his way, achieving
much and doing well his part in forwarding the greal
march of development that has made Texas one of the
greatest commonwealths of the Union. His life has been
ordered upon the highest plane of integrity and useful-
ness and he and his iicMe wife have inviolable place in
the confidence anil high regard of all who know them,
both being earnest and roiisisteat members of the Bap-
tist church. Mr. Ellis cN.-miilili.- the sturdv traits of
character that ever in.iir,it,' tlir Sn.ttisli race, of which
he is a scion, and he gi\.s iiii..|iii\ nral allegiance to the
cause of the Democratic parly. When the great Civil
war was precipitated on the nation, John H. Ellis
promptly gave evidence of his insistent loyalty to the
Confederacy, and he enlisted in the first volunteer com-
pany organized in Dallas county, the same becoming a
part of the gallant Ross Brigade, which went to the
front as a cavalry command, but which later was dis-

of Gen. Joseph E. Johnston

;i lit ex|M'ri.Mi.-od to the

ciiiilirt lct\w,.ii the North
M |iii\atiiin^ ami hardships,


mounted. In the con
and General Hn(..[
full the great tciix|,,n ,,f the
and the South, , mi. lineal
and participated in many nt
guinary engagements niarkiiii
and weary contest. Mr. E
first in an engagement with t
battle of luka, Mississippi,
of General Johnston in the ever memorable final re-
treat, marked by constant fighting, and, with the gallant
and jaded command, he surrendered. He has ever re-
tained the deepest interest in his ,,ld cmrades in arms
and perpetuates the more gracimi- incmoi i.s and associa-
tions of his long, arduous ami i^allant inilifary career
through his active affiliation with the I'liitcd Confederate
Veterans, the reunions of which he attends with regular-
ity, as does he also the meetings of the camp in which he
holds membership. He has honored the Lone Star state
through his character and achievement and is a well-
known and highly esteemed citizen of Dallas countv.

John H. Ellis, the immediate sub.iect of this sketch,
was reared to the sturdy and invigorating disci[iline of
the old home plantation and, after availing himself of
the advantages of the public schools of the village of
Lancaster, he completed an effective course in Hill's
Business College, in the city of Dallas. .4t the age of
eighteen years Mr. Ellis assumed the position of book-
keeper in a mercantile establishment at Lancaster, where
he continued to be thus employe

until he had attained




to his legal majority. He then lemoved to Houston
county, where he engaged in farming, near Porter
Springs. He thus continued his active work for a period
of about five vears, at the expiration of which he estab-
Ushed his honie in Crockett, the county seat, m which
city he has since resided. Here he held the position of
bookkeeper for K. D. King, engaged in the general mer-
cantile business for some time, after which he accepted
a similar office in the large mercantile establishment ot
tlie Jutii's S Shivers Companj', with which he was thus
i, I,. n't III. n until 1903, when he was elected tax assessor
,,f iimi-tnii rnuiity, au office of much responsibility and

„, ( ,.x,,tiii>' order. Bv successive re-elections he has

„„„t;„„o.i' the'^efficient and valued incumbent of this

,....„, ..nd that his administration has met with un-
equivocal popular approval is shown not only in his
retention of the post, but also in the uniqualified con-
fidence and esteem reposed in him by the people of the
county, throughout the limits of which he has become
well known and in which it may consistently be said
that his circle of friends is limited only by that ot his
acquaintances. In 1912 he entered upon his fifth con-
secutive term in the office of tax assessor, and m con-
nection with his official duties he has also given effective
service as a practical surveyor, the two lines of work
having given him a broad and accurate knowledge ot
real estate values, resources and general civic conditions
in his home county. It is needless fo say that Mr. H-liis
is found arrayed as a loyal supporter of the cause of
the Democratic party, whose star is once more m the
ascendency in national affairs, and as a citizen he has
shown himself distinctively progressive and public-
spirited. He has not wavered in the religious faith in
which he was reared and is a zealous member of the
Baptist church, his wife being a member of the Metho-
dist Episcopal Church, South. Mr. Ellis is ac-Uvely affib
iated with Davy Crockett Lodge, Xo. 193 Knights of
Pvthia.s, and Myrtle Camp, No. 277, ^^ oodmen of the
World, and his popularity is shown by the fact that he
has passed all of the official chairs in each of them. He
is also a member of Lothrop Lodge, ISo. 21, A. t. &
A. M., and Trinity Chapter, Xo. 4, Eoyal Arch Masons

The 8th of October. 1892, marked the solemnization of
the marriage of Mr. Ellis to Miss Mattie Burton, who
was born and reared in Houston county, a representa-
tive of one of its oldest and most honored tamilies. and
who is a daughter of David L. and Lucy l Baker ) Bur^
ton the former of whom is deceased and the latter of
whom resides in Crockett. Mr. and Mrs. Ellis have seven
children, namely: Hallie, Henry, John B.. Mary, Eoss
Ralph and Esther May, and all remain at the parental
home, which is known as a place of most gracious and
buoyant hospitality.

J.\MEs William Madden. Former Secretary of State
of Texas and well known throughout the state for his
participation in public affairs, James William Madden
has had a long and active career as a member of the bar,
and has resided in Houston county all his life. He rep-
resents the old stock of Eastern Texas, the different
branches of his familv having located here long before
the ante-bellum davs, and on one line of the ancestry the
family history goes back to the years of the Republic,
and even prior thereto. Mr. Madden began his career
as a worker for the support of his father's family
when he was a mere child and continued for a number
of years to bear such burdens and responsibilities: but
through it all his aspirations were directed toward at-
taininiJ an additional siihere of usefulness in the world.
That he attained to such a position and that he has won
so manv merited distinctions is the most significant and
interesting fact in the life of this well known person-

James William Madden was born in Houston county,
Texps, June 16, 1856. His parents were Balis and Mis-
souri (Adams) Madden, the father being a native of

Louisiana and the mother of Houston county, Texas. The
Madden family, which is of Scotch-Irish descent, came to
Texas many years ago, when the father of the Crockett
lawyer was but three years of age. The paternal grand-
parents were James and Lucinda (Edens) Madden. The
Edens family is one of the oldest and most noted in the
annals of Eastern Texas. They came to this country
during the era of the Eepublie of Texas and were given
a league of land under the act passed by the govern-
ment of the Republic to induce immigration to Texas.
The great-grandfather Edens and the grandfathers Mad-
den and Adams secured a league of land each in this
way. The leagues owned by Grandfathers Madden and
Adams were located in Anderson county and the Edens
league was in Houston county. The families were
all planters of the early times and owned a number of
slaves, who worked their plantations.

One of the most notable events of the Texas frontier
has a pertinent place in the Madden and Edens annals.
This was what is known as the "Edens' Massacre,''
which occurred during the early '30s in the northeast
part of Houston county. James Madden, the paternal
grandfather, and his family, were all directly involved
in this murderous raid from the Indians. Grandmother
Madden was tomahawked, being wounded in the side,
back and head, and having her collar-bone cut in two.
She was left for dead, but succeeded in dragging herself
out of the house between the legs of an Indian guard,
the Indians in their excitement failing to observe her
exit. Crawling to the corner of a fence, she lay there,
bleeding, while the Indians set fire to the buildings and
destroyed the entire group of houses with the exception
of one little outbuilding. Into this little shelter she
pulled herself, after the Indians had departed, and lay
there alone all night. The Crockett lawyer has hearil
from her own lips the remarkable statement that she
' ' never slept better in all her life, ' ' a fact probably
due to the severe loss of blood. There were two principal
dwellings on the place, and in times of danger one of
them was occupied by the women and the other by the
men. This Indian raid had been anticipated and the
men had collected in their house, but when the danger
had apparently passed they had left their guns stacked
and had gone over to the house of the women. It was in
this situation that the attack came, while the men were
cut off from their arms, between nine and ten o'clock at
night. About seven or eight of the party were killed, in-
cluding two brothers of Balis Madden. Charred remains
were afterward found in the debris of the burned houses,
indicating that the bodies of these children were con-
sumed after the slaughter. Balis Madden, at the time
of the massacre, was a small boy and ran away with the
negro slaves to save himself, and with whom he remained
in hiding in a hog's bed until morning. The Indians
rarely ever molested the negroes, so that the boy was
practically safe while with them. Despite all her ter-
rible injuries and experiences of thaft night, the grand-
mother recovered in a short time and lived in Houston
county until 1889, dying at the advanced age of seventy-
seven vears. Grandfather James Madden, who was noted
throughout the country for his great physical strength,
died long before the passing of his wife, and his death
was directly due to a strain resulting from some feat of
physical effort. The maternal grandfather Adams, about
the same time, was injured by a runaway plow-team, and
also died.

The mother of James W. Madden died at the early age
of twenty-nine, when her son James was but thirteen
yeais of 'age. Balis Madden, who was a farmer all his
life, died at the age of fifty-seven, his death being sup-
posed to have been shortened by a wound which he re-
ceived during the Civil war. He had enlisted in 1862 and
served nntirthe battle of Mansfield, Louisiana, where he
was wounded and his right leg amputated, so that he was
unable to return to active service. After the war he
served as tax collector of Houston county for six years.



and was one of the prominent men in tlie community in
all the movements and activities which represented the
better citizenship and moral growth of this vicinity.
There were six children in the family, two sons dying in
childhood. A daughter, Mary, was the wife of James A.
Glover, and at her death left one child, Nannie, who lives
in Colorado City, Texas. Dorothy is the wife of B. F.
Holcomb, a farmer near Alto, Texas. Plorinda is the
wife of Joe E. Monk, who lives at Kennard, in Houston
county. Each has several children.

James William Madden, who is the only surviving son,
spent his early childhood in Houston county during the
Civil war period. When the war closed he was nine years
old, and in the meantime his parents had lost all the
slaves with which the plantation was operated, and the
father, being a cripple from his wound, was unable to
give much attention to his estate. In this situation the
woik of managing the farm devolved largely upon the
young lad, and he remained at this post of duty and
faithfully bore his responsibility in behalf of his parents
until he was of atre. He then married Miss Bettie
Mitchell, a native .il llnnsron .unnty and daughter of Z.

W. Mitchell. Thi'ir ili rlnMrcii are named as follows:

Addie-Missouri is tlu' mlt- of Samuel M. Boone, who is a
partner with James W. Madden in the real estate and
abstract business; they have two children, Madden and
Paul Boone. Charles Madden is engaged in the lumber
and hardware business at Jourdantown, Texas ; by his
marriage to Miss Alice Dean they have three children,
James, Elizabeth and Charles. Wilson-Erls Madden,
who is now a civil engineer residing in Denver, Colorado,
has had a notable career. A graduate of the Annapolis
Naval Academy in the class of 1906, he then entered ac-
tual service, was with the Atlantic fleet on its remarkable
tour of the globe of that year or the year following, and
after the return was with the Pacific fleet, reaching the
position of Junior Lieutenant of the Navy. On account
of ill health in 1910 he was retired on part pay by the
naval authorities and has since been engaged in the prac-
tice of his profession at Denver. He married Miss Dor-
othy Ann Hayes, of New Jersey, and they have one
child, Dorothy Sage Madden. Bettie. the mother of
these three children, died at Crockett in Ajuil, 1884,
and in November, 1885, Mr. Madden marrieii Miss Sarah
Thomas Holcomb, the daughter of Thomas H. Holcomb.
who is now a resident of Augusta. Houston county.

After leaving the farm, James W. iladdcn located in
Crockett in 1882, and for three years served as deputy
tax collector under his father, this being followed by six
years' service as deputy county and deputy district clerk,
the duties of both positions having been efliciently per-
formed by him at the same time. He also edited the
Crockett Economist, a weekly newspaper, during two
years of this time. At the age of eighteen he had taken
"up the study of law, and he continued this at every pos-
sible interval over :i iirnnd ,.f seventeen years, until in

1891 he successfully pa^-,.,! th
mitted to the bar. Sum ,■ tin ii
ber of his profession. i\itli tl
when he was called ii|iihi in l:i
affairs. In 189() Mr. MinMni
Charles A. Culberson, who w
and is now the senior I'nitei

laminations and was ad-
he has been an active mem-
■ ' exception of three years,
• ■ all his attention to public
lici-ame private secretary to
IS then governor of Texas,
I States Senator from this

state. In 1897 and 1898, during the Culberson adminis-
tration, Mr. Madden was a member of the official family
of the government, holding the chief office under his
appointment as Secretary of State. His services in that
ofiSce were important. He was ex-officio a member of
the State Printing Board and State Board of Education.
He was during that time also a member of the first
Texas State Text-Book Board, a body created to select
and adopt a uniform system of text-books for use in the
public schools of the state. His associates on this board
were Governor C. A. Culberson, M. M. Crane, then At-
torney General; E.W. Pinley, who was Comptroller; J.
M. Carlisle, who was Superintendent of Public Instruc-

tion, and Professor W. F. Priehett, who was then Presi-
dent of the Sam Houston Normal School. During this
time Mr. Madden also presided at the organization of
the twenty-fifth and twenty-sixth sessions of the legis-
lature of his state, which was a part of his official duties.
Since returning from Austin, Mr. Madden has given all
his attention to his large and lucrative law practice at
Crockett. He has served upon the city school board and
has interested himself in a public spirited manner with
all movements for the advancement of his home locality,
members of the Southern Methodist
ned when sixteen years of age and
he has been almost constantly on
< of his church, of which he is now
so served as superintendent of the
lool for several years. He and his
children of their" own, but his three
first wife were quite young when he

Pie a U.I
she at
the boa I

married his present wife and they never knew ner ex-
cept as "mother." They are all prominent members of
their respective communities and owe their splendid sta-
tions in life in a large degree to her woitliv and kin.llv
precepts. In politics, Mr. Madden has ar\\av.s I,,.,.,, a
Democrat, being a firm believer in denio.rahr principles
of government and is a great admirer of our present
executive head, President Woodrow Wilson.

H. Nations. In the commercial enterprise of
El Paso during the last .piartor of a century there has
been no more conspicuous liy,,,,. iii,in that of Joseph H.
Nations, who is owner ami |,io|,i i.jor of the J. H. Na-
tions Packing & Mcrcaiitilr Coiiiiiany, and probably owns
as extensive |,io|Matics in ranches and the cattle industrv
as any oih.a iinlMnlual in west Texas. Mr. Nations has

not i'"'.^ 1 II an inijiortant factor in various lines of

business, but also in the civic development of his com-
munity, and has contributed largely to the advancement
of the general welfare.

Joseph H. Nations, who represents one of the oldest
families of Texas, was born in Gon?ales countv, Texas.
January 5, 1857, a son of Eli and Eliza (Austin Wood-
ruff) Nations, natives respectively of Mississippi and
Texas. Eli Nations, the father, came to Texas when a
boy, in company with liis fatliiT. am! was ivaicl in
Austin and subsequently iiocainr a rattloman aiol lainier.
During the closing niontlis ot' tlic i'imI v\ar li.- was iu

the service of the Coiifocloral xorninont a- li.'rf Iniver

for the aniiy. TTis , loath ..rrnri,.,! at tlio -loar a-o' of
eighty-srv,-ii y,.ars m IUlL'. wliilo his ui t'r pas-,.,! Tnvay

was a resalelit of tlouzales louiity uniil Iss;', ;it which
date he sold his interests there and moved to Alpine,
where he and his wife had their home until 1888, at
which date they came to El Paso and lived in quiet re-
tirement in this city until death came to both of them.
The mother's half-sister was the wife of Anson Jones,
who was the last president of the Texas Republic.

Mr. Joseph H. Nations spent his boyhood in southern
Texas and attended the public schools', and also was a
student in Moulton College of Lavaca county. When he
left school at the age of twenty-one years it was to
take up the occupation which his father had so long
followed, the stock-raising industry, and among his con-
temporaries the ,iudgment is that no man in the state of
Texas has made a more substantial and consistent suc-
cess as a cattleman than Joseph H. Nations of El Paso.
He is the owner of several ranches, one in El Paso
county, a large ranch in Socorro county. New Mexico,
another in Pecos county, Texas, and his herds of cattle,
horses and sheep, principally cattle, number many thou-
sand and cover many hills and valleys while grazing over
the vast estate of Mr. Nations.

The year 1886 is remembered among old time cattle-
men as one in which the cattle market was at about its
lowest point, when the price of cattle was such that few
men could make a profit by driving their stock to the



northern and eastern markets. It was in this period of
special depression that Mr. Nations made the beginninig
of an enterprise which has since flourished as one of the
largest of its kind in the Southwest. He established at
El Paso a retail butcher business. From small begin-
ning this has developed with the growth of El Paso in
the general extension of the cattle business and all other
lines of industry, and the J. H. Nations Packing Com-
pany today does an annual business amounting to more
than half a million dollars and has about one hundred
people in its employ. It is by far the largest establish-
ment of its kind in El Paso and is an important com-
mercial asset to the city. Mr. Nations also has interests
in a transfer company, in the real estate business, and
in laving out additions to the city, and various other
enterprises of this city. He is also a member of the
executive committee of the Panhandle and Southwestern
Stockmen's Association, El Paso, and of the American
National Live Stock Association. His business career
has been of a very strenuous nature. He has never al-
lowed himself any vacation and from an early age has
been constantly in the saddle, both literally and fig-
uratively speaking, and it is as a result of this unre-
mitting" application to business that his success has ex-
panded and been so generous. Mr. Nations is a di-
rector of the First National Bank of El Paso, is presi-
dent of the Young Men 's Christian Association, and is
a trustee of the First Baptist church. He is also a
member of the Elks Lodge.

Mr. Nations was married October 6, 1880, to Miss
Ida M. Hicks, who was born in Mississippi and who
came when a child to Texas with her parents. Her
father and mother were Joseph Y. and Mary E. (Braden)
Hicks, natives respectively of Mississippi and Tennessee.
Both her parents represented some of the old and promi-
nent families of the South, and for generations back
had been identified with the wealthy and cultured and
slave-owning countrv and Southern aristocracy.

Dr. Joseph Y. Hicks, father of Mrs. Nations, was a
graduate of Tulane University of New Orleans and for
many vears was engaged in the successful practice of
his pro"fession in Lavaca county, Texas. The four chil-
dren of Mr. and Mrs. Nations are as follows: Josephine
Nations, residing with her father in this city, Anna is
the wife of A. B. Trmston. who is a wealthy retired
ranchman and now resides with his wife on a beautiful
and large landed estate near Edinburgh, Scotland; Kath-
rine, who is the wife of Nelson Studebaker Kiley. Mr.
Riley being a nephew of the well-known Studebaker
Brothers, automobile and wagon manufacturers and the
manager of the branch house of the Studebakers at
Kansas City ; Mary, the youngest child, is at the present
time pursuing her studies in music at the University of
Berlin, Germany. Finally, after many years of constant
devotion to his business, Mr. Nations, appreciating the
strain placed upon his health and physical resources, de-
termined to take a vacation and en.ioy a much needed
rest hv an extensive trip throughout the East. The home
of himself and his family is at 904 South MagofiSn street.
Through all the years of his residence, Mr. Nations has
kept a firm faith" in the future of this city, and he him-
self has witnessed and helped promote a prosperity
which has been surpassed by no other Texas city. With
the completion of the great irrigation project now in
progress, and with the further development of mining
industries which are still in their infancy, and with the
proper extension of trade with Mexico, El Paso, accord-
ing to Mr. Nation 's positive convictions, will forge rap-
idly to the front, and within less than ten years will
have a population of one hundred thousand people. Mrs.
Nations is well known in El Paso for church and chari-
ties, and her name has often been associated with the
social and benevolent undertakings which have been a
feature of El Paso life during late years.

Robert L. Lattimobe is well known as an attorney
of Paris who has spent his professional life largely in
the public service. He was born in Lamar county, Texas,
near Roxton, on March 19, 1878, and he is the son of
Joseph M. Lattimore.

Joseph M. Lattimore came to Texas from McMinn
county, Tennessee, where both he and his wife were born
and reared. Joseph was born in 1S44 and his wife was
born in 1852. She died in January, 1899, the mother of
Thomas, of Sulphur, Oklahoma; John, a farmer at Rox-
ton, Texas; Robert L.. of this brief notice; Samuel, of
Fort Worth, Texas; William, a merchant of Paris, Texas;
Aubrey W., of Lattimore & Thompson, Paris, Texas,
and Roy and David Dickson Lattimore, farmers, of Rox-
ton, Texas. The father of Joseph Lattimore was
Buchanan Lattimore, who was born in Tennessee and
there passed his entire life. He was a farmer, and he
participated in the Civil war as a Confederate soldier,
furnishing two sons to the service as well. His son,
Joseph M., the father of the subject, was with General
Forrest 's command during much of the time he wore the
Confederate gray, some tour years in all, and he served

Online LibraryFrancis White JohnsonA history of Texas and Texans (Volume 4) → online text (page 122 of 177)