Francis White Johnson.

A history of Texas and Texans (Volume 4) online

. (page 26 of 177)
Online LibraryFrancis White JohnsonA history of Texas and Texans (Volume 4) → online text (page 26 of 177)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


and arranged for a colony to be established m bt. Gene-
vieve county. He then returned home to arrange tor the
removal of his family, but, like Moses of old, he was
not permitted to more than look towards the promised
land for he was cut off before the family started on its
iourney and his ashes still sleep in the Volunteer state.
The event caused no change in the plans, and his widow,
with the dauntless enterprise of pioneer women, became
the practical leader of the family emigration. In 1,9S
with her married sons she headed the exodus for the
Louisiana country. Their goods were loaded on to keel
boats, floated down the Tennessee into the Ohio, and
from the mouth of the Ohio up the Missii^sippi to Cape
Girardeau. Five of the sons were then married, and
each took a grant of laud on the Missouri side of the
river and chopped from the vast forest an abiding place
and farm The seven sons of grandmother Murphy were
Josiah David, Eichard, DuBart (named in honor of the
French merchant with whom his father did an import
inu- business prior to the Bevolutionary war), Isaac,
Je>se and William. The last named was the father of
Captain DuBart Murphy of Texas. Settling m the ex
treme southeastern corner of Missouri in what is now
St. Francis county, the Mu,|li.vs u.mo s„ numerous as to
aive the com.uun.tv „;,„„■ Mn.phv S,., 1 lr;n,.nt. In a few
years the Mu.i:l.v mM tLnnnt Iu. :n,i, a pn,,ulous one, and
strangers passing tliruugh W^anu. fe.-l sate m hailing
every man as a Mr. Murphy, and it is claimed they sel-
dom made a mistake. In that vicinity grandmother Mur-
phv who was a devout Christian, is said to have con-
ducted the first Sunday school in the entire state of
Missouri She lived many years, witnessed the political
events which transferred the Louisiana territory first to
France and later to the United States, followed by the
organization of Missouri territory and the admission of
the territoiv as a state, and died in 1843 and is buried
at Farmin^r'ton in St. Francis county. Her maiden name
was Eachet Henderson, and she was born in the Shenan-
doah Vallev of Virginia. William Murphy, the father
of Captain DuBart Murphv, was one of the family party
which established pioneer homes in the Missouri settle-
ment, and continued to live and reared his family m bt.
Francis county.

The late Captain DuBart Murphy, who was the young-
est of his father's children, grew up m Southeastern
Missouri near the Mississippi river, had some recollec-
tion of the war of 1812, and saw the first steamboat that
passed along, a pioneer in the great river traffic that was
subsequently developed along that highway. One of his
first school" teachers was Joshua Barton, a brother ot



Judge David Barton, who, with Colonel Bentoj, was
elected first United States senator from Missuiiii. When
seventeen years of age. Captain Murphy was asic i
his uncle to make a trip to Jonesboro, n-xas. tn inquire
into the death of his son Isaac, who was icported to
have been killed by Indians. That was in the year
1S23, and all the Arkansas country was practically un-
known except to traders and trappers, and only a few
trails led across the country and lost themselves in the
forest. The hardships of such a journey did not deter the
young man, and he was additionally spurred by the prom-
ise of one hundred dollars for the desired information.
He made the journey on horseback, found the settlement
in which his cousin had lived about Jonesboro, learned
the particulars of his death by the Indians, and returned
as he came after the absence of J;wo months.

From 1823 to 1828 Captain Murphy carried on mining
and trading, selling beef to the lead miners in south-
eastern Missouri and driving horses south and selling



theii



the



inters in the lower Mississippi Valley.
^iil.-r.jii, ii;!< li,. went to St. Louis and hired himself to
i!" Ml a knife and wounded Captain Murphy

li" '1. W :! II .1 few months a negro highwayman killed
il:i -I I II til a knife and woun<ied Captain Muiphy
himself. This event threw him out of employment, but
gave him an acquaintance with Edward Bates, subse-
quently Lincoln 's attoine.y general. In 1833 Captain
Murphy went to Xew Orleans to buy goods for a mer-
chant at Farmington who declined to make the trip him-
self because of the scourge of cholera in the Orescent
City.

These are only a few of the many interesting events
of his active career during the years before he came
to Texas. In November, 1836, Captain Murphy married
Miss Elifabeth Anthony, a daughter of Samuel Anthony
of Madison county, Missouri. The children of that union
are enumerated in a following paragraph.

Finally Mr. Murphy, becoming dissatisfied with his
Missouri home, determined in 1841 to seek a new one.
Having seen a statement in a newspaper published at
Xatchitoches that President Houston of Texas would
hold a Treaty at the three forks of the Trinity, he de
termined to be present at that negotiation, and set out
alone, crossing the Red river at the mouth of Mill Creek,
There he fell in with seven or eight others who weie alsoj
going to the Treaty. The Treaty was held at Byrd's
Fort near the present city of Dalias, and the only three
white families in that locality were the Bryants, the
Keenans and the Beemans. At this Treaty Mr. Murphv
met General Houston for the third time. Sime years |
previously, on taking a drove of horses throuah the Chero-
kee nation, he first saw the ex-governor of Tennessee,
then living in exile, at Webber's Store. At another time
he had become a traveling companion of the great Texas
statesman at Fayetteville, Arkansas, and their routes lay
together as far "as Natchitoches, where they separated,
Houston going to Xatchitoches and Murphy to Alexan-
dria, Louisiana, To the end of his life Captain Murphy
regarded Sam Houston as the greatest man he ever knew.

After the Treaty at the vicinity of Dallas, Captain
Murphy and other's visited other sections of the state
along the Trinity, and the captain himself then returned
home through Lamar county, where he rented a farm, and
continued his journey to Missouri to arrange to bring his
family to Texas. Thev all arrived at their new home in
Lama'r countv in the "fall of 1842. After one year in
Lamar, Captain Murphy moved to Hopkins county,
settling near Hargrove's Mills, fifteen miles from Tar-
rant, which was then the county seat. In 18.50 Captain:
Murphv moved to Kaufman county, first buying land,
near tlie mouth of East Fork, and a little later he moved >
to the vicinity of King Creek. While there he took an
active and influential part in the second election for a
county seat, and it was largely due to his activities that
the vote decided in favor of Kingsboro, After about two
years at Kingsboro Mr. Murphy moved to Old Trinidad,
but became dissatisfied on account of the ' '^'^'-'



Dhealthful



TEXAS AND TEXANS



167



locality, and in 1855 bought a farm and established his
home in the Crandall community, which knew him inti-
mately during the remainder of his life. There he en-
tered into the spirit of home building and made an indeli-
ble impression upon his community. He was hopefully
disposed, always bore a feeling of good will towards
his fellow.s. entertained all with his ready wit and rich
fund of stories and jokes, displayed an adaptability for
business, and helped to fight some of the real battles and
participated in many of the political skirmishes of the

During the war between the North and South, Captain
Murphy was selected to raise a company in Kaufman
county for Colonel Buford's regiment, and though past
the military age succeeded in raising the full quota
and was commissioned as the first captain. He served
seven months, hut saw none of the fighting, and his only
acquaintance with the Yankees was with a few prisoners.
Wheu he resigned towards the end of 1862, Lieutenant
Michaux became captain and the old captain returned to
his farm. From the close of the war no event in his
personal career occurred of special note. He lived quietly
among his friends and neighbors until the death of his
wife, after which he shared his time with his children
until his own death in 1891.

By his marriage to Elizabeth Anthony, Captain Murphy
had eleven children, named as follows: Ellen, who died
iinmarried; Amanda, who became the wife of Dr. Hen-
ley, and her two children died in infancy; Lafayette, a
sketch of whose career follows; Samuel, who lives in
Mills county, Texas; IJenderson, a resident of Brown-
wood, Texas; Joseph, who died in Kaufman county; Wil-
liam", who died in the Confederate army; Mary, whose
first husband was Henry Boykin and her second P. M.
Lewis, and she died at Forney, Texas; Eliza, who mar-
ried John A. Coleman of Kaufman; besides Barton and
DuBart, both of whom died in infancy.

Lafayette Murphy, the oldest son of Captain DuBart
Murphy, was .born in St. Francis county, Missouri, De-
cember 14, 1839. He received a limited education in
Kaufman county before the war, during which he had
been crippled for life. He joined Captain Chisholm's
Company A, Colonel Stone's Third Texas Cavalry, and
saw some service in Missouri and Arkansas in Eoss 's
Brigade, and, while in winter quarters, in 1861-62, lost
his right leg in an accident and wns =ent back home

maimed for life. AcquiriiiL; :i faiilv ^ I education, he

became a trader and lanmi. <lr:ilt siir,,'s^i iillv in' cattle,
horses, and mules, and lllMlll)ll^t^:^lc.l nihility and business,
leaving an estate of more than seven lunidred acres at
his death in November, 1887. He was ever interested
in all matters that he considered for the benefit of his
community, and as a member of the Christian church
was faithful to its tcachiu-s.

Lafayette Mmi'liy was luarried within a mile of his
home on Dec<'inliri is. isi;(;. to Miss Virginia V. Wade,
whose birthplace is a few uiiiuites walk of her present
residence. Mrs. Murphy was a daughter of Vincent A.
and Phoebe (Utley) Wade, who came from Gallaway
county, Kentucky, to Texas in 1845. Her father died in
1847, the year in which Mis. Murphv was born. Mrs.
Phoebe Wade, who died in 1883. had been left with a
family of young children to support and for years braved
the difficulties and hardships of a frontier woman's life,
and succeeded in rearing her children and giving them a
good home and fair school training. After the dangers
and hardships of her earlier career, she spent the evening
of her life in the comforts of her children, and passed
away in her seventy-sixth year. The eh Idren in the Wade
family were: William L.. who died in Panola county,
Texas; B. W.. who died in Kaufman courty; Henry, who
died before the family left Kentucky; Ann, who became
Mrs. William Grubbs" and later iirs Oilando Anthony,
and who also died in Kaufman county: John A., who died
in Young county. Texas; Edward W., who spent his
entire life in Kaufman county; .Jacob Sanders, who was
killed in Tucson, Arizona ; Bannister, who died in Kauf-
voi. IV— n



man county ; and Virginia V., who is the sole survivor
of the family.

The children of Lafayette and A'irginia Murphy were
as follows: Amanda, the wife of Dr. T. A. MUler of
Corsicana. Texas; Modena, who died in Kaufman as
Mrs. E. E. Thompson; Ed W., of Gi Idfield, Nevada; Wil-
liam B., who conducts the family homestead ; Joseph E.,
who was educated in the New York branch of the East-
man Business College, who closed five yeais of business
practice in New York with a cleikship in the Fifth
Avenue Trust Company, is now cashier of the First
National Bank of Crandall, and who by his marriage to
Miss Mary Gibbs, daughter of W. N. Gibbs, has four
children named Mary V., Donald, Kathleen and Mil-
dred; Polly the youngest child of Mrs. Murphy, who
died when five years of age. All the children except W.
B. and Joseph E. were educated in the Add-Ran College
at Thorp Springs, Texas. The scholastic training of
Joseph E. has been noted, while WiUiam B. received his
education in Nashville, Tennessee.

Following the death of her husband, Mrs. Murphy as-
sumed his ]dace in the management of his affairs and
carried on the business much as he had planned. She
and her sons have added much to the productiveness of
the farm by opening new land, building tenant houses
and extending the domestic elements of farm life to
their wide domain. They have aligned themselves with
the spirit of advancement and are amongst the most sub-
stantial and best esteemed people of Kaufman county.
The Christian church has exercised its influence in the
familv in the rearing of the children, and Mrs. Murphy
has been a faithful member of its circle since her mar-
riage.

Wiley Morrow, M. D., of Trenton, Texas, is a son
of Drs. James, Sr., and Fannie Morrow, practicing phy-
sicians of Blue Ridge, Collins county, Texas. He wa"s
born in Hunt county, Texas, October 27, 1877, whence
his father had gone as a youth of about eighteen years,
in company with his parents from McMinn county,
Tennessee. He was born near McMinnville, in 185-^,
was a son of Matthew Morrow, a modest Tennessee
farmer who settled near Pike, Hunt county, Texas, re-
sumed farming, and died in that locality in 1888. at
sixty-one years of age. The latter was a son of Cap-
tain Morrow, who obtained his title as a soldier after
the Revolutionary War. JIatthew Morrow married a
Miss Baker, and they became the parents of ten chil-
dren, among whom was James Harrison, the father of
Dr. Wiley. Other children to grow up were: Annie,
who married Hans Parish of Leonard, Texas; Andrew,
who is now deceased; Dr. John of Soiitherland Springs,
Texas; Thomas of Pike, Texas; Dr. William of Snvder,
Texa<; Ccr,!-,. ,if Pike, Texas; Benjamin of Souther-
land Springs, -rexas; Minnie, the wife of Davi.l lloj.e of
Dcnti.n riinntv, Texas; Sarah, who spent her life .is Mrs.
Jeti'eison Huckleliv of Pike, Texas, and Cvnthia. who
nmrried Hill Berry of that locality.

.Tames Harrison Morrow acquired his professional edu-
cation in Tulane University. New Orleans, graduating in
1880. He began practice at Nobility, Fannin county, but
for many years has been located in Collin county. His
)iolitical alignment is of Republican persuasion, his fa-
ther having espoused the Union cause during the Civil
War and acted with the republican party afterward.
As between the candidates for the presidency in 1912,
Dr. Morrow followed the fortunes of Mr. Roosevelt. In
1876 Dr. James Harrison Morrow was married in Fannin

county to Miss Fannie McCuistion, daughter of

McCuistion, who came to Texas at the close of

the Civil War. Some years after her marriage Mrs.
Morrow decided to prejiare for a professional career, and
did so in the American College of Medicine, St. Louis,
graduating from that school in l^iOi. and for the past
twenty-one years has actively and efficiently practiced
her profession. She is affiliated with the local and State



1674



TEXAS AND TEXANS



medical societies, and is one of the professional women
of Texas who are honoring medicine in its application
to human ills. She and her husband have had two chil-
dren: Dr. Wiley, and Dora, wife of Hall Melugin of
Sabinal, Uvalde county, Texas.

Wiley Morrow was a student of Grayson College,
Writewright, Texas, after the public schools, and chose
medicine for a career in 1896, when he entered the
American Medical College. When equipped as a physi-
cian, he began practice upon a certificate from the Dis-
trict Board at Gainesville, Texas, in the community
where he had grown up. He resumed the work of finish-
ing his medical course in the Georgia College of Medi-
cine and Surgery, Atlanta, and after graduating there,
in 1901, resumed practice where he had left off. He lo-
cated in Trenton in 1905, and in 1912 attended the Chi-
cago Polyclinic for a course. He is a member of the
state and national medical bodies, is Trenton's health
officer, and local surgeon for the M., K. & T. Bailway
Company. In national politics, he is a progressive, and
gives his support to Democratic candidates in Texas. Dr.
Morrow is past chancellor of the Knights of Pythias,
past noble grand of Oddfellowship, and a Master Mason.

On January 6, 1897, Dr. Morrow was married at Tren-
ton, Texas, to Miss Katie Stapp, daughter of John C.
and Susie (Dodd) Stapp. Mr. Stapp came from Ala-,
bama, and is the father of Katie, Hugh, Hubbard, Dud-
ley and Clyde, wife of Stanley Simpson. Dr. and Mrs.
Morrow have three children: Lucile, Marguerite and
Bennie.

John H. Beavers. A distinguished member of the
Wood county bar, John H. Beavers is a resident of
Winnsboro, where he stands admittedly at the head of
the bar and as one of the ablest and most successful
attorneys in Northeast Texas. The following brief
sketch and estimate of his career was written by one
who has known him long, both in the law and in pub-
lic life.

He was born in Franklin county, Texas, March 6, 1870,
where he grew up to early manhood on a farm. His
father, W. H. Beavers — "Major Beavers" — who died
in Franklin county in 1886, was a native of the old
Volunteer state, and at one time a member of the
Tennessee legislature from McNairy county. While he
did not enlist as a soldier, on account of advancing
years, he nevertheless gave to the "Lost Cause" not
only his moral support, but the services of three sons,
one of whom died while wearing the gray. They were
children of his first wife, who was Miss Cynthia Parker
prior to her marriage, she dying in Tennessee. He later
came to Texas and married the daughter of a Mr. Fitz-
gerald, her death occurring in November, 1911. The
surviving children of this union are: Dr. W. L. Beavers
of Hawkins, Texas; and John H. Beavers whose name
introduces this sketch.

The early life of John H. Beavers was uneventful, but
he was patient, industrious, studious, and modestly
ambitious. Y.et, while struggling with life's problems,
he lost no opportunity to read law, and managed many
trials of minor importance for his neighbors in the
justices' courts, even before his admission to the bar.
in this line of amateur practice, his success was with-
out a parallel and served to stimulate his young ambi-
tion. He pursued his legal studies more ardently than
ever and in due time was licensed to practice. He had
been engaged in actual practice only a few years when
he removed to Wood county and identified himself with
the bar and fortunes of the" thriving little city of Winns-
boro. That was but little over a decade ago, and yet, in
that comparatively brief period, he has won not only
distinction as a 'lawyer, but commanding prominence
as a useful citizen.

Mr. Beavers' wonderful success in the management
of a noted murder case brought him prominently to
notice as a criminal lawyer of exceptional ability. In



the first trial of this case (known in Texas court his-
tory as the "celebrated Wallace case") the defendant
got a death sentence. The brief filed by Mr. Beavers on
appeal in the court of criminal appeals was declared
by one of the able associate justices to have been
one of the strongest and most exhaustive ever filed in
that court, and yet he knew that it marked Mr. Beav-
ers ' first appearance in that august tribunal. The case
was reversed. On a second trial in the district court,
Wallace got a life sentence to the penitentiary. Again
the case was appealed, with the same result — a rever-
sal. Then a mistrial, and finally an acquittal. The
theory upon which Mr. Beavers fought and ultimately
won his famous cause, saving his client's life, involved
some of the most intricate and vital features of the law
of evidence that had up to that time ever perplexed
the criminal courts of the state, and the opinion handed
down in this case is now the settled law of the state
on the questions involved.

The result of this famous trial, after two or three
years of royal conflict in the courts, brought Mr. Beav-
ers into immediate prominence. However, his career
in this line of practice was at that time of short dura-
tion. The people saw the value of his services, and in
1906 he was elected district attorney over a very able
opponent, by an overwhelming majority in the judicial
district composed of the counties of Wood, Smith,
Van Zandt and Upshur. He polled 2,144 of the 2,316
votes of Wood county. As a public prosecutor, he made
a record of convictions with few parallels in the judicial
annals of the state, exhibiting the same ability in the
prosecution of men charged with crime that he .had
formerly displayed in their defense. During the last
of his four years ' service in this office, Mr. Beavers
was urged by his host of friends to become a candidate
for Congress on the Democratic ticket, and to vindicate
their confidence and partiality, he consented to make the
race. He made a spirited campaign before the people
of the district, but was defeated by a rival candidate
who held a commanding geographical advantage in
the contest. The primary vote showed Mr. Beavers to
have lost onlv one precinct in Upshur county and only
two in Wood" county, where he polled 1,250 votes to the
other's 781. Although he lost the nomination, Mr. Beav-
ers made a wide acquaintance and established himself
among men of influence in the district. The following is a
clipping from a comment made by some of his friends
at the time he made the race for Congress. "We have
known Hon. J. H. Beavers, and have been closely
identified with him since his boyhood days, and know
him to be a man of the highest moral qualities, a pro-
found, painstaking and qualified lawyer, and a man of
exalted character and lofty ideals, possessing, in the
highest degree, those qualifications and requisites so
necessarv to befit him for the place to which he aspires. ' '
Also it "has been said of him by those who know him
best that he embodies all of the higher traits of South-
ern citizenship. .

His term of office as prosecutor having expired, he
resumed the general practice of law. Since that time
figured as leading counsel on one side or the other of
nearly every important case tried in the district court
of Wood county, both civil and criminal, besides often
appearing in leading cases in other counties. He has
conquered the struggle of the past and is splendidly
equipped to grapple fearlessly with the future. With
not a spot or blemish on his public career or private
life, in the prime of life and in full possession of every
faculty of mind and body, unimpaired by a single
vice or weakness, it is but reasonable to foretell that
the future of his life will be even more conspicuously
successful than the past.

Judge D. R. Pearf.son. For a number of years prom-
inent in the official affairs of court and county, a former
county judge, Mr. Peareson is one of the citizens whose



TEXAS AND TEXANS



1675



long residence, success in profession and business, and
high personal character entitled them to the best dis-
tinction in public life, where their previous record in-
sure faithful and intelligent service in behalf of the
public welfare.

D. E. Peareson, who was born in his home town of
Kichmond, Texas, August 2, 1869, is a son of the late
Hon. Philip E. Peareson and a member of a family
which has been conspicuous in citizenship, in the law,
and in its performance of military duty for several gen-
erations in the south. The late Philip E. Peareson was
born in Talladega, Alabama, and he married Minnie
Eugeley.

The founder of the family in Texas was the paternal
grandfather. Dr. E. A. Peareson, who brought his family
to Texas when the late Philip E. was a boy of iive or
six years. Their first settlement was in Victoria county,
whence they moved to Matagorda county, where Dr.
Peareson died. Until the outbrealc of the Civil war. Dr.
Peareson was engaged in the practice of his profession,
but then organized a company and went to the
front as its head. Philip E. Peareson was a lieu-
tenant under his father in that same organization,
and came out of the war with the straps of cap-
tain. He also was a member of General Granbury^s
staff. He was taken prisoner at Arkansas Post, but was
subsequently exchanged, and then in the great battle of
Franklin was again captured, and this time sent to John-
son 's Island, the Federal Prison in Lake Erie, and was
held in confinement there until the close of the war, and
he suffered many hardships. On going out for service,
he had been a member of Pat Cleburne 's Division.
Among other battles in which he was a participant was
those of Missionary Eidge and Lookout Mountain. On
returning to Matagorda county, after the war, Philip E.



Online LibraryFrancis White JohnsonA history of Texas and Texans (Volume 4) → online text (page 26 of 177)