Red River Parish, Louisiana History and Genealogy
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Red River Parish: This name was adopted in 1871, when the boundaries of this modern parish were established by the Legislature. Of the 386 square miles known as Red River Parish 165 are Red River bottom lands, and 221 oak uplands. In 1879-80 there were 33,930 acres in cultivation; 19,200 under cotton; 10,566 acres corn; 88 acres sweet potatoes, and 9 under sugar cane. There were 11,512 bales of cotton produced, or .6 of a bale per acre; 855 pounds of seed cotton, or 285 pounds of cotton lint. The uplands form the divide between the Grand Bayou of Black Lake and Red River. Here the river flows through a narrow channel cut through solid blue or red clays to a depth of forty feet. Fresh land produces from 1,500 to 2,500 pounds of seed cotton per acre, and age shows only a slight decrease in capability. It is rich in valuable timber, and has a soil, both alluvial and upland, of unsurpassed fertility. All the vegetables and fruit known to horticulturists, when properly eared for, grow luxuriantly, and yield a rich return for the labor bestowed upon their cultivation. Sweet and Irish potatoes both produce wonderful results. An average of 150 bushels per acre of Irish potatoes is not an uncommon yield, and as much as 300 bushels to the acre of sweet potatoes have been produced.
The average yield of cotton is one bale per acre, but it is not uncommon to obtain one and a half and even two bales per acre, under judicious cultivation. Corn is produced on an average of 30 to 40 bushels per acre, and in many instances from 75 to 100 bushels have been gathered per acre. The common field pea, planted with corn on the same ground and at the same time, will yield from 20 to 30 bushels, besides acting as a superior fertilizer to the land planted. Sorghum grows luxuriantly, and proves rich in saccharine properties. Millet, oats, rye and clover yield large results. The native grasses and cattle food grow in great richness, and possess as much nutritive properties as any known food for grazing.
The population in 1880 was 8,573, of whom- 2,506 were White and 6,007 Colored. In 1890 the population is placed at 11,338, of which 638 are subject to military duty, 764 are White voters and 1,575 Colored voters. There are 1,844 White males (Returns by Assessor Wamsley) 1,709 White females; 3,822 Colored males and 3,903 Colored females; 1,209 White and 2,776 Colored children, between the age of nine and eighteen years.
Prior to 1835 Natchitoches was the head of the Red River navigation. From Coushatta Bayou, for almost 180 miles up the river, was the "Great Raft," the collection of trees and debris of the upper waters for years. In 1830-31 the United States War Department complained of the expense of transporting supplies to Fort Towson, in the new Indian Territory, and this complaint, added to the treaty promises made to the Choctaws and the Chickasaws, led to au appropriation by Congress, in 1831, for the removal of impediments to Red River navigation. Capt. Henry M. Shreve was employed to take charge of this work, at a salary of $5,000 per annum. He was not a United States officer, but a bargeman between Louisville and New Orleans up to the time he took charge of the third steamer ever seen on the Mississippi. The Government furnished him with two powerful snag-boats, two transports and four barges, manned by 200 regularly enlisted men. The men received $20 per month. In the fall of 1832, work was commenced at a point below Shreveport, 140 miles by river. In the winter of 1835, the raft was removed as far up as Shreveport, but the work of natural accretion had been carried on so industriously by the river, from 1832 to 1835, that it was found there were over thirty miles of raft formed above Shreveport, and the work of removing this or making new channels, where the mass was too solid to remove, was at once entered upon and completed in 1840, leaving the river navigable for 1,100 miles.
The "Concord," commanded by Capt. Hildreth, and the "Indian," lay at Shreveport for a month before the completion of the work, and on its completion followed the Government boats to the newly-formed head of navigation. They were loaded with supplies for Fort Towson, four miles northeast of the Red River, in the Indian nation. within two years a new raft formed for eight miles between Hurricane and Carolina Bluffs, so that another appropriation of $100,000 had to be made by Congress. In 1842 Gen. T. T. Williamson bought the contract for this work, and chartering the freight boat "Southwestern," had little difficulty in clearing the river. His contract bound him to keep the channels clear for five years, and to effect this at little cost, he boomed the river above Carolina Bluffs. Shortly after Capt. Washington Robb arrived at the boom with his boat, expecting to trans-ship the cargo to au upper river boat, but failing in making arrangements, he cut the boom and proceeded on his way, leaving the river free to continue the work of raft-making. In 1850 another appropriation of $100,000 was made, and Capt. Fuller, U. S. E. C , was placed in charge of the work. Instead of cutting the twelve miles of raft between Carolina Bluffs and Gilmer, he contented himself with cutting canals at the head and foot of Dutch John's Lake and to sundry work on Dooley's Bayou, with the object of throwing the water into Soto Lake.
This useless work cost the United States $90,000. The plans on which Fuller acted were said to be inspired by James B. Gilmer, who at this time was hostile to Shreveport. Gilmer also had a ditch excavated, 5,100 feet in length, from the point where Tone's Bayou leaves old river into Bayou Pierre. The fall in this short distance, seven or eight feet, attracted the waters of the river, and soon a ship channel was in existence and Tone's Bayou or Antoine Fourier's Bayou, was formed. For many years after the Fuller fiasco the United States let this raft severely alone. In 1872 there were several raft formations, aggregating twelve miles of solid raft for thirty-two miles above Carolina Bluffs. Another appropriation was made and the work confided to Maj. Howells, U. S. E. C. He placed Lieut. E. A. Woodruff in immediate charge, and within a year the obstructions were almost removed, owing to the fact that a nitro-glycerin factory was established and the powerful explosive used in blowing up the islands. The condition of the raft of 1872 may be explained by stating, that on several of its sections groves of willow trees sprung up, some of which reached twelve inches in diameter.
During the epidemic of 1873 Lieut. Woodruff came to Shreveport to aid the people, but was himself carried off. On the total removal of the raft the United States steamer " Florence " was stationed here. In 1882 the new appropriation of $85,000 won by Congressman Blanchard, and $25,000 balance of former appropriations, were available. Appropriations for Cypress Bayou and other improvements have since been made and improvements effected. In 1890 Capt. Lydon removed the 300-years old raft at Young's Point, cutting a channel 600 feet wide for five miles. (The head of Tone's Bayou was closed by Surveyor Shreve, about 1843, with driftwood from the raft above. In 1849 James B. Gilmer, a planter, had a ditch made through the obstruction, which gradually widened, until the water found its way into Bayou Pierre Lake, and again falling into Red River through Wincey Bayou, below Coushatta. In 1858 Representative B. White won an appropriation for straightening the river at Scopinis. This work was done in 1859-1860, but the first boat did not pass through the cut until 1862, when Capt. Phelps backed the Rinaldo through. During the war Dr. Hotchkiss, under instructions from the secretary of war, closed the bayou, which was washed away not to be rebuilt until 1872-73. In 1874 the United States engineers had the raft removed and Tone's Bayou reclosed.)
An attempt was made immediately after the war to form a new parish out of Natchitoches, De Soto, Bienville and Caddo, but for many reasons the scheme was not brought to perfection until 1871, when a Legislature was found willing and capable of giving the authority to organize. In May, 1871, the first police jury organized within the old store building of Lisso & Bro., at Coushatta Chute, M. H. Twitchell was elected president, and he, with P. E. Roach, George A. King, P. S. Edgerton (killed in 1874), E. W. De Weese (killed in 1874), and Prior Porter (Colored) formed the board. D. H. Hayes, deputy district clerk, was clerk; Homer J. Twitchell (killed in 1874), recorder; J. T. Yates, sheriff; Julius Lisso, treasurer, and P. S. Stokes, tax collector. The jurors entered on the duties of office without ceremony or delay, and the tax collector's work began a few days later.
On January 9, 1872, E. W. De Weese, representative, called up his bill authorizing Red River to issue $20,000 bonds to build a court house and jail. D. Cady Stanton, of Bossier, in opposing this measure, stated that $13,000 had already been misappropriated for this purpose, and he emphasized this assertion by stating that the jail built under this $13,000 was not paid for. W. H. Scanland opposed the bill here as the taxes were already heavy, 14 mills State, 2 per cent to Natchitoches for courthouse and jail purposes, and 14.5 mills parish taxes, or nearly 6 per cent. W. L. Hain, whose lowest bid for the building of the court-house was rejected, published his complaints. In January, 1872, the treasurer's (Julius Lisso) report for 1871 was presented. This showed $11,321.55 paid to him by F. J. Stokes, collector, and $11,318.27 expended. The whole amount was simply paid back to P. J. Stokes at intervals, and as the jury was in secret session, few citizens ever knew the details. M. H. Twitchell was senator from this district, and E. W. De Weese, of De Soto; L. J. Souer, of Avoyelles; Charles S. Able, of Bossier; Mortimer Carr, of De Soto, and D. C. Stanton, of Bossier, non-resident representatives in 1871-72. Within the Legislature the efforts of the parish jury to strip the old inhabitants and many of the new inhabitants of their property were ably sustained. The new rules regarded them as prey, and so continued to regard them and trifle with them until 1874, when human nature asserted herself by as just a rebellion as history records.
This riot originated at Brownsville, August 26, 1874, when two negroes were killed while sneaking round the home of one of the two planters who were threatened with death. Next evening a ball was held at Coushatta, but in the midst of the dance reports from Brownsville came instating that the negroes were going to exterminate the Whites.
Steps were taken to collect the Whites for defense, while Sheriff Ederton and Tax Collector De Weese accompanied a number of citizens to Brownsville (Edgerton sent a courier in advance to have the negroes disperse), but on their arrival there were no negroes to be seen. The White garrison at Coushatta placed pickets along the roads. While passing the house of Tax Collector Homer J. Twitchell, fire was opened on the squad and Joseph Dixon was wounded. Suspicion pointed to Twitchell, and he, with Sheriff Edgerton, tax collector of De Soto, De Weese, Parish Attorney Howell, Justice of the Peace Willis and Registrar Holland were arrested. Twitchell made confessions which led to the arrest of several negroes. The latter were held to be tried by a committee of twelve.
While these proceedings were taking place, exasperated people marched toward Coushatta, to aid the citizens, and the scared officers were driven to propose resignation, which they did on August 29. They wished to leave the State at once, but were told to be careful, as the people might attack them. They were too anxious to leave, and selecting a guard of twenty-five young men, under John Carr, set out for Shreveport, and carried out the first forty-five-mile race successfully. At that point the " Texans" under "Capt. Jack " came up with the guarded fugitives, and after a short parley, shot them down. The negroes, who were making ready for war in the Bayou Pierre Swamp, were dispersed, their leaders arrested, tried, condemned and executed, and peace restored. The men killed deserved their end richly, but the methods of rendering them justice were not so entirely honorable as they might be.
Prior to November 13, 1874, thirteen arrests were made at Coushatta, and on that day four more citizens were arrested by Merrill's United States Police. The thirteen original prisoners were released on $5,000 bail each, and were ultimately cleared of participation in the punishment of those political ragamuffins. The police carried matters so far as to preface those wholesale arrests with the arrest of Editor Cosgrove. In 1875 G. A. King (ex-sheriff) was serving as president, M. H. Twitchell (later president), J. W. Watts and Benjamin Perrow, members; D. H. Hayes, clerk; W. P. Peck, recorder; J. P. Hyams, district clerk, and Lieut. P. H. Moroney, superintendent of registration; John D. Collins, printer. In 1870 J. W. Watts presided with Ben Perrow and W. S. Mudgett. Madison (Howard) Wells and James Grant (both Colored) were also members of the jury about this time. J. W. Harrison, who in 1875 was postmaster at Coushatta, and tax-collector, was killed September 14, 1878, at Starlight plantation, four miles up the river. The whole year was one of Civil War. The oppressor and the oppressed were in the field daily, and the latter would have succeeded, undoubtedly, in the unequal contest with the former, had not the power of the Freedman's Bureau been so overwhelming in the adjoining parishes of Caddo, Bienville and Natchitoches.
The shooting of Capt. M. H. Twitchell, and the murder of King, took place May 2, 1876. A stranger who knew their whereabouts, waited for them on the Coushatta bank of the river. Twitchell and King, on arriving on the west bank jumped into a skiff unsuspectingly, and when near the eastern landing the avenger fired. Twitchell got into the water, holding on to the boat, leaving King to be shot dead by the second fire. Twitchell luimeme, had both arms broken and the ferryman, who went to his rescue, was wounded in the hand. Twitchell was taken to Springville where his arm was amputated, while the desperate avenger defied arrest and rode off.
The death of Capt. Twitchell gave the taxpayer at least time to breathe. H. S. Bosley, G. W. Robinson, B. S. Lee, and W. S, Williams, president, were jurors in February, 1877. They estimated the expenditures at $8,070, for the fiscal year ending in 1878. [The records of the police jury for this and preceding years could not be found at the courthouse.]
In 1878 W. S. Williams was president with B. S. Lee, H. S. Bosley, James Grant, and B. G. Kenny, members, and D. H. Hayes, clerk. An ad valorem tax of 4 mills, a road and bridge tax of 1 mill, a public building tax of 1 mill, an election tax of 1 mill, a judgment tax of 2 mills, and an incidental tax of 1 mill were authorized in April, and $224 granted to George H. Russell, for repairing the court-house. In August the quarantine ordinance was adopted, and in September the ordinance, establishing the, boundaries of the five wards was carried. In January, 1879, T. L. Terry, of Ward 1, was elected president; J. M. T. Elliott, Ward 2; T. G. McGraw, Ward 3; S. F. Spencer, Ward 4, and F. Roubien, Ward 5. J. P. Clarkson was appointed parish printer, and Dr. Guthrie, physician. The tax levy for 1879 was similar to that for 1878, but the estimate of expenditures was only a little over $7,000. Julius Lisso, treasurer, was succeeded by W. F . Eames.
In October, 1879, the 4-mill tax for jail building purposes was defeated by ninety- three votes against fifty-three. In March, 1880, J. J. Sprawls was clerk, succeeding Hayes. S. B. Harris, qualified as representative of Ward 2, in June. In February, 1882, the jail building was completed, and the iron cells constructed by Pauley Bros, were also completed and the building accepted from the contractor. The sale of the old building and lot was authorized. In November, 1882, the proposition of J. W. Pearce, principal of the Coushatta Male and Female Academy, to educate two pupils, selected by the police jury, free of charge, was accepted. Laura McGraw and J, P. Kent were chosen pupils. The police jury of July 23, 1884, comprised T. L. Terry, president; F. Roubien, Samuel Harris, W. H Treadwell, and J. H. Rich, J. C. Egan, Jr., was chosen clerk. Dr. W. A, Boylston, physician, and W. T. Eames, was re-elected treasurer.
In September the vote for the sale of liquor was 510, and against such sale, 295. In 1885 John Crichton was a member of the jury vice Treadwell; Ben. Wolfson, clerk, vice Egan, and Dr. Guthrie, physician, vice Boylston. The clerk resigned in December, when Ed W. Lisso was elected to fill that position. The election on the liquor question held December 8 shows 307 votes for the sale of liquor, and 111 against such sale. In February, 1887, H. C. Stringfellow and J. . Pugh were appointed delegates to the Inter-State Agricultural Convention at St. Charles; W. S. Atkins and O. J. Conley, with Messrs. Terry Harris and Crichton, formed the jury. In 1888 G. J. McGee and L. W. Stephens qualified as jurors; Robert Stothart as treasurer, and W. S. Atkins as president of the police jury. After his (Atkin's) resignation (in July, 1889), T. R. Armstead was appointed juror, and L. W. Stephens, president. The jury in January, 1890, comprised L. W. Stephens, president; G. J. McGee, Ward 2; C. J. Conly, Ward 3; J. Crichton, Ward 4, and T. R. Armstead, Ward 5, with Ed W. Lisso, clerk. In February the vault constructed by the Diebold Safe & Lock Company was received by the police jury, and 6 per cent notes for $4,350 were given to that company. A 10-mill parish tax was authorized to meet, the estimated expenditures ($10,000). In September, 1890, the ordinance regulating the sale of meat in a part of Ward 5 was adopted. This ordinance provided that the dealer or peddler in meats should expose the ears and hide of the animal during sale with the object of preventing the sale of stolen meats. In October Louis Scheen was elected treasurer.
In 1870 the vote for governor shows 413 for Nicholls (D.) and 832 for Packard (E.). In 1879 Wiltz (D.) received 694, and the opposing Republican, Beattie, 79. In 1884 McEnery (D.) received 574, and Stevenson (E.), 552; while in 1888 Nicholls (D.) received 1,679, and Warmoth (E.), 78. The voters' register showed 1,938 names for April, 1888, 690 being Caucasians. Of the Whites there were then 110 who could not write their names, while there were 1,062 Africans deficient in this matter.
The first session of the district court was hold at Coushatta (then in the Eighteenth District) September 4, 187.1. Judge L. B. Watkins, presided. The first grand jury comprised Henry Pickett, Robert Andrews, Judge Warren, William Bedford, Edward Cason, Dave Austin, Richard Williams, Zion Carroll, George Abney, Gabriel Grappe, David Powell, William Bryant, W. Allen, Henry Armstead, W. O. Garrison, Azro Armstrong, William Mountjoy, G. W. Sherrod, Beverly Turner, J. H. Coleman, S. J. Jackson, G. A. Friend, Benjamin Austin, Robert Long, Joseph Dixon, Isaac Whitney, John Brunner, Hemy Beck, Reuben Williams, Isham House, Lewis Cox, Abram Baker, Richard Cunnagan, J. L. Denson, Anderson Smith, Samuel Branch and Henry Dowden. Six other names were called but were reported not in the parish, while E. W. Tower, entered ou the venire by Sheriff Yates, was the name of a woman. T. E. Paxton was the first clerk. In August he was appointed district attorney, and was succeeded before the close of the year by D. H. Hayes. John T. Yates was sheriff at this time.
In May, 1872, William Patterson was indicted for murder. The spring term of 1873 was opened by Judge James B. Trimble, of the Eleventh District, who disposed of a number of serious criminal cases. In September of this year resolutions on the death of John E. Griffin, a lawyer of Bossier, were adopted, and the report of the grand jury received. This report condemned a report by the former grand jury, and declared that the court-house was not yet completed. On the condition of the parish, the jurors affirmed their belief, that in the midst of the political excitement of the times, Red River Parish was comparatively free from crime and disturbance.
J. P. Hyams was then district clerk, with D. H. Hayes, deputy. There is no record of court for 1874, nor was there a term of court opened until September, 1875, when Judge O. Chaplin presided. Anthony Easton, Henry Nicholson and George Nicholson were found guilty of murder, killing a Jew peddler, and sentenced to death; but of the trio, Henry Nicholson was the only one who suffered the extreme penalty (A. J. McCord being executioner), the others having escaped from jail. William Teary and J. D. Lacy were indicted for murder, and the case of the State vs. M. H. Twitchell was dismissed.
The Colored desperado, "Banjo Joe," was killed by H. C. Stringfellow in April, 1876, while opposing arrest.
In May, 1877, Judge Pierson succeeded Judge Chaplin, and in June judgment was given for the plaintiff in the case, J. W. Carnes vs. Red River Parish, but his demand for the special decree for the assessment and collection of a special tax was denied. On July 14 jury commissioners were appointed, viz.: George W. Cawthorn, A. S. B. Pior, J. P. Dickson and P. L. Collins, and in November a number of indictments were returned against road defaulters. A year later Jim Moss, Colored, was convicted of manslaughter, but escaped from the jail. In November, 1879, resolutions were adopted by the bar and officers of court, expressing sorrow for the separation of Red River from Natchitoches, and the consequent separation of the presiding judge from the parish. The resolutions were signed by L. B. Watkins, W. P. Hall, district attorneys; J. J. Sprawls and J. D. Roach, lawyers; W. P. Peck, clerk; D. H. Hayes, deputy clerk, and J. A. Bell, sheriff. Judge James L. Logan presided here in May, 1880.
John D. Roach was admitted to practice here, and in November John A. Hunter was sheriff. The tragedy of December 30, 1881, at Bonnie Doon, near Coushatta, resulted in the suicide of Robert Lewis, after his attempt to kill the widow of his brother, Mrs. W. S. Lewis, and her sister, Mrs. Thompson. The suicide shot Clarence Pratt in a duel after the war. Pratt was, at the time, a member of the Legislature from Claiborne Parish (Webster not then being known). From the effects of this wound Pratt died. Mrs. Lewis died at the Hotel Dieu, New Orleans, about a month after receiving the wound. The indictment against Joe McGee for murder was returned in November, 1883; he was found guilty and sentenced to be hanged April 4, 1884. The return of this execution was made by Sheriff Hunter, and witnessed by H. A. Hunter and W. H. Wamsley. Lewis M. Howard qualified as clerk in 1880. In July, 1884, W. P. Hall succeeded J. L. Logan as judge of the Tenth District, and is to-day presiding judge of the new Ninth District, comprising Red River, De Soto and Sabine.
It is fortunate for him, as it is for the district, that the lawlessness that prevailed here during the decade ending in 1884, had almost disappeared before his commission was issued, and that the criminal docket of to-day is as light as in any district of au equal population in the State. J. M. T. Elliott succeeded John A. Hunter as sheriff in 1884, and in 1888 T. E. Paxton succeeded F. B. Williams as clerk of the district court; Scheen is deputy clerk.
The court of appeals for the First Circuit was opened here in May, 1880, by Judges Moncure and George. The last record of the parish court was closed March 31, 1880, and signed by Parish Judge A. Ben Broughton. It was opened May 29, 1871, by A. O. P. Pickens; he was succeeded in 1874 by O. S. Penney, and he in 1875 by A. Ben Broughton.
The bar of Red River Parish in 1890 comprises J. C. Egan, J. F. Pierson, J. C. Pugh, J. D. Roach and William Goss. Five years before the names of S. A. Hull, M. S. Jones, J. F. Stephens, J. J. Sprawls, L. B. Watkins, J. L. Logan, and many of the lawyers named in the history of adjoining parishes appeared on the records.
The Coushatta Times was established early in 1871, by William H. Scanland, of the Bossier Banner, and published by him until December, of that year, when H. A. Ferryman became owner. In May, 1872, he retired, and M. L. Pickens and others carried on this journal almost to its close. In January, 1874, W. A. Le Seuer took charge, and conducted it until August, 1874.
The Coushatta Citizen was issued December 9, 1871, by W. H. Scanland, who carried it on until 1874, when J. L. Denson took charge. L. W. Connelly & Co. purchased the office in 1874, and in March, 1875, J. P. Clarkson became owner. The Red River Watchman was issued August 22, 1874, at Coushatta, by W. A. Le Seuer, with W. O. Pickens, local editor. This paper was issued seven days before the Coushatta riots, and was instrumental in ridding the parish of the vilest set of cut-throats sent into Louisiana to rob a people. The common-school system is still in its infancy here. The old Springville Academy and the private schools at Coushatta and other points, afforded so many opportunities, for acquiring an education, that the free schools were principally utilized by Colored children.
The enrollment of White pupils in Red River Parish for the years 1878 to 1887, inclusive, was 317, 375, 243,. 302, 546, 274, 507, 458, 542 and 575. In the same years the Colored enrollment was 446, 442, 270, 403, 434, 499, 384, 507, 493 and 472. In 1890 Assessor W. H. Wamsley placed the number of White children between nine and eighteen years of age at 1,209, and Colored children at 2,776. The physicians of the parish, who registered up to the close of 1889, under the act of 1882, are Walter E. Hawkins, a graduate of Mobile College,, in 1883; Ed F. Bead, of Louisiana University, in 1883, and Thomas L. Terry, of Louisville College, in 1888.
As an organized division of the State, Red River was unknown in 1861-65, so that whatever military history pertains to it, is given in the sketches of the neighboring parishes. As early as 1840 W. D. Lofton and W. A. Martin, Mexican War veterans, were residents of this parish. Many of the survivors of the Civil War reside here, among them a few who were the first on the battle fields of Virginia and last under arms when the last regiment of Confederate soldiers was paroled.
Coushatta, the seat of justice, stands on the eastern bank of Red River, in Latitude 32° north, and Longitude 10° 15' west. It is an incorporated town of 564 inhabitants, and the market town for one of the richest agricultural districts of Louisiana. The location was formerly known as Coushatta Chute, near Springville. Coushatta Point, near by,, was the site of the Jones store and warehouse, which were destroyed in April, 1864, by Gen. Banks' raiders. In 1866 Julius and Mark Lisso erected a building for trading purposes here, and controlled trade until the place was selected as the parish seat, in 1871. Twenty years ago the river swept along the eastern bank; now the channel is on the other side.
In 1871 there were the following buildings: T. W. Abney's three cottages, on Carroll Street; William Upshaw's dwelling, Abney & Love's Coushatta Hotel, conducted by William Herring (William Powell in 1872); Charles N. Prudhomme's store, opposite E. P. Pauvert's cheap store; adjoining Prudhomme's, G. W. Cawthorn's livery; then E. M. Searcy's house. On Front Street, were J. M. Brown's saloon, the Citizen office, in Abney & Love's two-story building; the stores of Abney & Co., W. W. Upshaw, O. P. Gahagau and Mrs. E. A. Carroll, the office of the Coushatta Times, Frye's saloon, the post-office, then kept by Julius Snead and Lisso & Bro.'s store. On Abney Street Capt. T. E. Paxton and A. D. Self resided, while across the street J. M. McLemore's office building was in course of construction, and the residence of J. W. Armistead; Miss Fannie Picken's school was then in existence. In 1871 Prudhomme's store was burned, but was rebuilt in 1872. In February, 1872, a church and lodge building was erected near Treadwell's store. The steam gin in that vicinity was burned some time before.
The act to incorporate the town of Coushatta was approved April 22, 1872, and in 1874 Representative De Weese introduced a bill to exempt town property from the parish tax. George A. King was the first mayor. In February, 1876, D. H. Hayes was mayor; P. A. Lee, secretary; John R. Carr, marshal; Messrs. Bullock, Broughton, Gahagan and Bosley, councilmen. In 1879 Samuel Lisso was clerk. In 1880 J. D. Patton was mayor, and H. R. Jones, clerk. In 1881 J. M. Brown was mayor and J. F. Stephens, secretary, succeeding H. B. Jones and J. H. Scheen, respectively.
J. J. Stanfill is the last mayor elected. The Coushatta fire of February 5, 1874, destroyed Abney & Love's store, the T. L. Terry store and J. M. Brown's saloon. The dwellings of J. W. Armistead, George Beausoliel and John Burk were saved. In 1880 the Stanfill house was destroyed, and since that time a few small fires mark the history of the settlement.
James McAllister was postmaster at Springville after the war. Later the office was closely identified with the court-house, M. L. Pickens and J. T. Yates, masters, and in 1875 Harrison, the tax collector, was master. D. H. Hayes, J. E. Hayes and Dr. Winder have held this office. Samuel Lisso was postmaster up to 1878; was succeeded in September, 1880, by Capt. T. B. Selby. J. R. McGoldrick was commissioned postmaster in 1881 to succeed Capt. Selby.
The Baptist Church of Coushatta dates to 1850, when J. E. Paxton organized a society here near Coushatta Chute. In 1852 this church left the Saline Association and united with the Red River Association. About this time a house of worship was erected on United States land. In 1860-01 a Methodist preacher named Read settled here, and learning that the Baptists had no legal claim to the land, he placed his family in the house and defied the disappointed Baptists. In 1861 Elder Kirtley settled at Springville, one and one half miles from Coushatta, and took charge of the academy. In the school building the members worshiped for some time as visitors, but in 1864 the church bought the building. In 1865 Kirtley moved to Ringgold, and not until 1869 did a preacher appear in the person of John Barron. Afterward G. W. Singleton, a member, was ordained preacher, and he was followed by J. W. Carswell.
The Baptist Church building commenced in August, 1880, and in September the Baptist society at Spring Hill entered on the work of building. In the fall of 1880 Contractor Zoder finished the building at Coushatta. The Methodist Episcopal Church building was completed October 2, 1880, being the first church house erected in the town.
The Coushatta Male and Female Academy was chartered in September, 1880, with Julius Lisso, president; J. M. Brown, J. H. Scheen, H. S. Bosley, T. L. Terry, W. W. Wardlaw and James P. Pierson, trustees; Ben. Wolfson, secretary, and G. W. Cawthon, treasurer. The capital stock was placed at $20,000. Prof. L. L. Upton was principal and Mrs. Upton assistant principal of the high school, then conducted on the first floor of the Masonic building. June 2, 1890, the following trustees were elected: Robert Stothart, D. M. Giddens, Paul Lisso, L. W. Stephens and J. M. T. Elliott. The board was organized by electing Robert Stothart, president; D. H. Hayes, secretary, and L. E. Scheen, treasurer. Mr. Fisher is principal.
The telegraph line between Coushatta and Minden was completed June 29, 1875, and the first dispatch sent to Buchanan & Davis, Minden, by Ben. Wolfson and E. W. Rawle. July 27 the line was completed to Natchitoches.
Silent Brotherhood Lodge 145, A. F. & A. M., was organized in 1857 under charter No. 155. On the establishment of Coushatta as the seat of justice, the place of meeting was also established there, and in 1872 the Masonic building was erected for lodge, church and school purposes. The officers installed in January, 1890, are named as follows: J. E. Hayes, W. M.; D. H. Hayes, secretary; Dr. E. F. Beall, S. W.; T. B. Selby, S. D.; L. A. Stall, J. W.; W. P. Hayne, J. D.; Dr. W. A. Boylston, treasurer; T. M. Howell, Tyler; G. W. Singleton, Chap.
Coushatta Chapter claims the following named officers: Sam Lisso, H. P.; G. W. Singleton, Treas.; J. P. Pierson, K.; D. H. Hayes, Sec.; T. L. Terry, S.; T. M. Howell, G. M. 3rd V.; J. R. Hayes, C. of H.; G. W. Singleton, G. M. 2nd V.; Ben Wolfson, P. S.; James Foley, G. M. 1st V.; D. M. Giddens, E. A. C.; W. T. Wilkinson, guard.
The Coushatta Temperance Council was organized in January, 1874, with L. W. Connerly, W. A. Le Seuer, J. P. Hyams, H. E. Jones, A. Abel, J. L. Denson, O. P. Gahagan and W. O. Pickens, officers. The serious character of public affairs destroyed the enthusiasm of temperance workers, and the council passed out of existence. The Dramatic Club was organized in August, 1880, with J. B. Prudhomme, Pres.; T. E. Bosley, V. P.; Thomas E. Paxton, Sec, and Burnside Capers, Treas. Literary and social clubs have succeeded this old club in time, but like it they have all disappeared. The A. O. U. W. is au old and strong organization here.
The Abney residence, purchased in 1878 by J. J. Stanfill, was burned in April, 1880. On its site is the present hotel, conducted by Mr. Stanfill. This house is an oasis in the hotel desert of the upper parishes of Northwest Louisiana. There are no less than twenty-seven business houses in the town, all doing a large trade. The oil mill of the Armisteads, on the opposite bank of the Red River, gives promise of becoming the leading manufacturing industry of the district. There is nothing left of Springville. It is the deserted village. In 1874 Mrs. C. Bumgartner opened a store where Beausoliel formerly did business. The Springville Academy was opened by Prof. Paine.
Joseph Bierd, who in 1828 settled near Bayou la Chute, left a valuable property of 2,200 acres to his son, Jerry H. Bierd. The J. M. and J. W. Robinson plantation is a tract of 3,800 acres; the W. J. Hutchinson one of 2,000 acres; the J. V. Hughes, one of 1,400 acres; Capt. William Robson's large plantation below Tone's Bayou; J. Ben Smith, whose settlement dates back to 1850, owns a fertile tract, and A. N. Timon, who owns 1,500 acres, twelve miles above Campti. On his plantations are the mercantile houses of B. Williams and W. A. Oliphant.
Lac Dismure is one of the oldest settlements. There, years ago, B. Pierre Grappe located his plantation before the Archies, Bierds or Browns settled here. His son, Ben G. Grappe, is the present owner of the old homestead.
Brownsville, made notorious in 1874, was the property of Tally Brown, at his death the third man in point of wealth within the parish. The Atkins Bros, own the Lake End plantation above Brownsville, while Kenilworth, formerly the plantation of H. C. Stringfellow, is a 1,700 acre tract of rich land. The Powell plantation adjoining contains 900 acres. Above is M. A. Cockram's 600 acre tract, then the plantations of Robert Brown and J. B. Pire; next the 3,000-acre tract of S. Q. Hollingsworth; part of Capt. Marsdon's estate and part of the Thomas Armistead's lands. Ethel plantation, owned by Mrs. O. H. P. Gahagan, is just above Coushatta; then the Russ stock farm, formerly the Greening farm, the old Ben Lee plantation and the Pettywick farm now the property of Judge Egan. Above are the plantations of A. A. Farmer, Thomas Williams, the old Maj. Dixon lands; the 3,524 acres of Emmett T. Robinson (part of which has been in cultivation since 1858), John Murrell's 1,300, Capt. Marston's 7,000 acres (known as Ashland), and William Scarborough's great tract are all well paying farms. Cotton Point a plantation of 5,600 acres (formerly the home of George Robinson, who died in 1879), is now the property of H. C. Stringfellow and Georgia Robinson. In 1888-89 a large lumber and shingle mill was erected at Cotton Point by Robinson & Stringfellow. Twelve miles below Coushatta, on the Natchitoches road, is Cawley's lumber-mill and cotton-press, while at other points small industries are carried on. Throughout the parish are Saline and some fresh-water springs. Deer and wild cat are found in sufficient numbers to entertain the hunter, and the mink, a resident since 1862, appear sometimes in numbers. The minerals of the parish are similar to those of De Soto and Winn.
T. E. Armistead, one of the leading planters and well-known merchants of Ward 5, Red River Parish, was born in Mississippi December 5, 1845, his parents being William .W. and Mary (White) Armistead. The father was originally from North Carolina, being born in that State October 3,1803, and the mother a native of Mississippi. Their marriage, which occurred in 1842, resulted in the birth of seven children, four of whom are living, our subject being second in order of birth. In 1849 his parents left Mississippi to go to Louisiana choosing as their location Red River Parish, where they continued to reside until their deaths, the mother dying in July, 1862, and the father on January 7, 1875. Socially, he was a Master Mason, and also served in the capacity of police juror for a number of years. T. R. Armistead received his education at the Louisiana Seminary, in Alexandria, and deciding, in 1869, to start out in the world for himself, he engaged as a civil engineer, which occupation he followed but a few months, when he turned his attention to farming, and having no capital began this work on shares, persevering till he became the owner of a 1,400 acre plantation, 700 acres of which are in a high state of cultivation and well stocked. He is also the owner of a gin, grist and oil-mill, the oil-mill being located on his plantation, and, in connection with these various pursuits, he conducts a mercantile business, with a capital of $7,000, which invoices about $10,000 annually. Our subject first married Sadie I. Longmire, a native Alabamian, who died January 3, 1883, and on December 5, 1888, he again took to wife Jennie M. Butter, a daughter of J. W. Butter, of Louisiana. As an award of the unbounded respect of his fellow-citizens, he has been elected to the office of police juror, au office which he still holds. He is thoroughly awake to the interests of his parish, being a liberal contributor to all public enterprises.
E. P. Beall, M. D. During a professional career of about seven years Dr. Beall has already become well known and justly deserves the eulogiums bestowed upon him by his professional brethren as well as his patrons. He was born in De Soto Parish, La., December 25, 1862, and his youth was spent as a student in the common schools, which education he has since greatly improved by much study and contact with the world.
He is next to the youngest of four living children born to Dr. A. J. and Anna (Sanders) Beall, the former of whom was born in Georgia and is now a resident of Texas, and the latter born in Alabama and died in Natchitoches Parish, La., in 1869, when about thirty-four years of age. On January 1, 1881, E. F. Beall began the study of medicine in his father's office, and his first course of lectures was received in the medical department of the Vanderbilt University at Nashville, Tenn., and his second course during 1882-83, in Tulane University of New Orleans, La., from which institution he was graduated with the degree of M. D. in the spring of the last-named year. He then took a post-graduate course at the New York Polytechnic Institute, then returned to Louisiana and began practicing the healing art at Mansfield, remaining until 1884, when he came to Coushatta and became associated in the practice of his profession with Dr. W. Guthrie, a union which lasted very harmoniously and profitably to both until the death of the latter on March 4, 1890, since which time Dr. Beall has been alone. Miss Flora Eames, who was born in this State in 1866, became his wife in 1888, and their marriage has resulted in the birth of one child, Trammel. The Doctor has always cast his vote for men of Democratic principles, and socially, has for some time been a member of the Silent Brotherhood Lodge No. 146, of the A. F. & A. M. of Coushatta.
H. S. Bosley. Among the pioneer families who early cast their fortunes in the region which now comprises Red River Parish was that to which the subject of this sketch belongs, his parents, Peyton and Catherine (Saunders) Bosley, braving the dangers and hardships of life in a new and uninhabited region, coming here in 1833. They were born in Davidson and Sumner Counties, Tenn., respectively, the former's birth occurring in 1803, and his death in Natchitoches Parish, La., in 1859, his wife also dying in this State in the latter part of 1836, she and her children having joined the husband and father here the same year of her death.
Mr. Bosley was an enterprising man, and did much to bring the parish to its present admirable state of cultivation and civilization. He built the first cotton gin in this region, and became a very extensive land owner. He cleared up, owned and cultivated the land where the flourishing little town of Coushatta now stands. He also built the first sawmill in what is now known as Red River Parish.
Of two children born to him, the subject of this sketch, H. S. Bosley, is the only one living. Although he resides in Springville, he is the owner of 400 acres of his father's old plantation, also two other plantations on Red River, which he is very successfully conducting. He has always been very honorable and upright in his business transactions, and no man in the parish is more highly esteemed or respected than he. He has always voted the Democratic ticket since attaining his majority, and has clone all in his power to promote the interests of his party as well as to aid in the development of this section. He was married in 1855 to Miss Mary Powell, who was born in what was then Caddo Parish, and died on November 20, 1883, leaving the following-named six children to mourn their loss: Marion P., Milton H , Anna, Hubbard S., Percival L. and Walter W., all of whom are still living.
William A. Boylston, M. D., although born in the Palmetto State, October 7, 1842, has been a resident of Louisiana since he was six years of age, his parents, W. W. and N. A. (Riley) Boylston, coming thither in that year. They were born in 1821 and 1819, and in the town of Coushatta the father died in the month of September, 1877, being still survived by his widow, who resides in this town. Dr. William A. Boylston, is the elder of two children born to his parents, the other member of the family being a sister, who was born in December, 1803. From 1848 to 1872 the family resided in Bienville Parish, but since that time have been residents of Coushatta. Dr. Boylston first attended the common schools, then finished his education in Mount Lebanon University, in which institution he remained until 1862, when he joined Company C, Ninth Louisiana Regiment, and at the battle of Winchester was wounded and captured, in 1864 being exchanged at Savannah, Ga., in December of that year. In October, 1865, he returned home and began the study of medicine under the instruction of Dr. J. C. Egan, at Mount Lebanon, and in the winter of 1869-70 he took his first course of lectures in the University of Virginia, and in 1870-71 in the Medical University of Maryland, graduating in March of the latter year.
The following year he began practicing in Coushatta, and here has since continued the same with success, being also (since 1878) engaged in the drug business, his establishment being well appointed and conducted. He was united in marriage in January, 1887, to Miss Minnie Lee, who was born in Mississippi in 1865, and to them three children have been born: Lizzie Lee, William H. and Mary. The Doctor is a Democrat of long standing, and is now the oldest physician, in point of residence, in .the town of Coushatta. He belongs to Silent Brotherhood Lodge No. 146, of the A. F. & A. M. Dr. Henry Bryant is a leading physician and honored citizen of Red River Parish, but first saw the light of day in Bibb County, Ala., on March 9, 1841, being a son of John and Nancy (Davis) Bryant, the former dying before the subject of this sketch was born, and the mother in Jackson Parish, La., in 1863. When the subject of this sketch was an infant he accompanied his mother to Holmes County, Miss., and at six years of age they went to Jackson Parish, and there he was reared on a farm and received an academic education. In the year 1861 he served a few months as a soldier in the Confederate army, being a member of the Ninth Louisiana Regiment, but on account of ill health he was compelled to leave the service, upon which he returned home, and for several years he tilled the soil in Jackson Parish.
He was also upon two different occasions, engaged for a short time in the grocery business, this being in 1865-67. The following year he began studying medicine under Dr. A. F. Pollard, of Woodville, Jackson Parish, and after remaining with him three years, he in the fall of 1869, entered the Hospital Medical College of New Orleans, in which he attended one course of lectures. In the fall of 1870 he further fitted himself for his profession by entering the medical department of the University of Louisiana, of the same city, from which he was graduated as an M. D. in the spring of 1871. He at once began practicing at Woodville, Jackson Parish, where he remained three years. In 1874 he removed to Ringgold, Bienville Parish, La., in which place and vicinity he continued his practice until 1888, with the exception of the year 1878, when he was a resident and practitioner of Coushatta, Red River Parish. In 1888 he returned to this parish and located on a plantation which he had purchased during his previous residence here, it being situated on the east bank of Red River, three and one half miles above Coushatta, and contains 1,300 acres, 300 of which are under cultivation.
Since then the attention of Dr. Bryant has been divided between the practice of medicine and the management of his plantation, thirteen cabins and one cotton gin being erected on the latter. The Doctor was married in December, 1875, to Miss Ella A. Hayes, a native of Georgia, and daughter of D. H. Hayes. Their union has been blessed in the birth of six children, all of whom are living, their names being Theodocia, Mattie, Mary Belle, Anna Eliza, Henry Duke and Lizzie. Dr. Bryant is a member of the Masonic lodge, and in his political views is a Democrat. He is an excellent physician, skillful surgeon, an upright, honest citizen, and as a result has the confidence and esteem of all who know him.
M. A. Cockerham, of Red River Parish, was born in this State June 6, 1852. He was the youngest in a family of ten children born to John and Rebecca (Buil) Cockerham, natives of South Carolina and Mississippi, respectively. His father had been a farmer all his life, and at an early day emigrated to Louisiana. He was a member of the Masonic order, Apostle Lodge No. 36, and served as representative of Catahoula Parish for a number of years. He died June 19, 1880, his wife having died in February, 1806. They were worthy members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Our subject was educated in Greensboro, Ala. Deciding to fight life's battle for himself, at the age of twenty-one years, he took a position as clerk, which he held for six years, when he decided to turn his attention to farming, and started out with 520 acres of land, 350 acres of which are now under cultivation. He was married October 14, 1875, to Miss Maggie E. Scheen, who was also born and raised in this State, and they now have an interesting family of seven children: Steave, Percy, Henry, Glide, Nora, Viva and Lewis. His wife is a worthy member of the Methodist Episcopal Church South. He is a member of the Masonic order, Apostle Lodge No. 36, as was his father before him, having become a Royal Arch Mason, representing his order in the Grand Lodge one year, and commands the respect of all with whom be comes in contact.
John Crichton, planter. This, in brief, is the sketch of a man whose present substantial position in life has been reached entirely through his own perseverance, and the facts connected with his operations and their results only show what a person with courage and enlightened views can accomplish. His birth occurred in Muscogee County, Ga., October 17, 1843, to Peter and Marian A. (Grieve) Crichton, both of whom were natives of Scotland, but who came to America while still unmarried, their union taking place in Georgia about the year 1838. Of a family of eight children born to them, the subject of this sketch was the third, four sons and two daughters now living. The names of the eight in their order of birth are as follows: George P., William, John, Thomas, Sarah A., Adam H., James E. and Mary S. Those deceased are George P. and William, the former dying of camp fever while in the Confederate service at Manassas Junction, Va., in 1861, the latter being killed in the battle , of Port Republic June 9, 1862.
The third and fourth sons, John and Thomas, also served in the Confederate States army, their father being in the same service, a member of the Twenty-eighth Louisiana Regiment, being killed in the battle of Franklin, La., April 23, 1863. When the subject of this sketch was eight years of age, or in January, 1851, he accompanied his parents to that portion of Claiborne Parish that is now Webster Parish, La., and there he spent his early years on a farm near the town of Minden. At the age of seventeen he was employed a few mouths in a drug store in Minden, after which, in August, 1861, he went to Virginia, and there entered Company G, Eighth Louisiana Regiment, serving with it and participating in the battles of Winchester, Cross Keys, Port Republic, the battles in the vicinity of Richmond, Manassas, Antietam, Harper's Ferry and Fredericksburg, until May 4, 1863, when, in the battle of Chancellorsville, he was wounded by a ball in the left shoulder. This rendered him unfit for duty for several months, two of which were spent in the hospital, then he returned home on furlough; while here he did what he could to repel Gen. Banks, and subsequently returned to Virginia and rejoined his command, but not having fully recovered from his wound he was still unfit for service, and was again obliged to spend some time in the hospital.
For four years following the war Mr. Crichton conducted a photograph gallery in Minden, La., but in December, 1869, removed to that part of Natchitoches Parish that is now Red River Parish, and here has resided ever since, his attention being given to farming. He located on his present farm, which is known as Elder Grove plantation, in January, 1878, it being situated on the left bank of the Red River twelve miles above Coushatta, and contains 1,300 acres, of which 375 acres are under cultivation, well improved with good residence and barn, one cotton gin and twenty-three cabins. Mr. Crichton's marriage to Miss Frances W. Williams, a native of Alabama, took place January 29, 1873, and to them six children have been born as follows: Walter G., Fannie W., Josie D., Gracie, Thomas and Warren S. All are living with the exception of Gracie, who died at the age of ten mouths. Mrs. Crichton is the daughter of the late Dr. W. S. Williams, of this parish. Mr. Crichton is a member of the A.O.U.W and in politics is a Democrat, and has served several years as a member of the school board, and since July, 1885, he has been a member of the police jury, having first been appointed by Gov. McEnery, and secondly by Gov. Nichols.
He is one of the leading citizens of the parish, and he and his family hold a high place in the estimation of the citizens throughout this section. J. M. T. Elliott, the popular sheriff of Red River Parish, La., although born in Anson County, N. C , February 15, 1839, has been a resident of Louisiana since 1854. His parents, Isaac S. and Winfred (Rogers) Elliott, were born in North Carolina December 25, 1820 and 1828, respectively. About four years after their removal to this State the mother passed from life, but the father is still living and resides in Red River Parish. J. M. T, Elliott is the eldest of four living children, and in this State he obtained a common-school education, and learned the details of agriculture on his father's plantation. After devoting his time to tilling the soil until June 13, 1802, he joined Company B, Eleventh Louisiana Battalion, and served until May, 1865, but during this time was taken prisoner April 14, 1863, on the gunboat '' Queen of the West," which was then on Grand Lake, in Louisiana.
After his return home after the close of the war, he resumed farming, continuing until he was appointed parish assessor by Gov. P. A. Wiltz. April 16, 1884, he was elected to the responsible position of sheriff of Red River Parish, was re-elected in 1888, and his present term will expire in 1892. No more capable man for the position could be found than Mr. Elliott, and owing to his geniality and desire to oblige, he is very popular with all. He was married March 5, 1860, to Miss Martha Collins, who was born in Alabama, June 8, 1839, and to them a family of eight children has been born: William H., Angeline W., George S., Susan F., Mary E., Sarah T., and twins, Philip C. and James M. Of these children George S. and Mary E. are dead. Mr. Elliott has always been a Democrat, and socially is a member of the Silent Brotherhood Lodge No. 146 of the A. F. & A. M. He and his wife are prominent members of the Missionary Baptist Church at Coushatta.
Daniel M. Giddens is a worthy tiller of the soil residing three miles below Coushatta, and his plantation, which comprises 500 acres, is well adapted to raising all the products of the South in abundance, and ^everything about it indicates that a man of thrift, industry and good judgment has control of affairs; 250 acres are under cultivation, and in addition to tilling this Mr. Giddens is quite extensively engaged in stock business, which is proving a remunerative enterprise. He was born in Alabama, November 9, 1835, and was the third of seven children, four of whom are living, born to Abram and Sarah (Smith) Giddens, natives of North Carolina, the former born in 1798 and the latter about 1802. They died in Alabama, the former passing from life in August, 1878, his wife having departed this life in 1847.
Daniel M. Giddens was reared to a farm life and was a student in the country schools. In 1857 he went to Texas but the following year came to Louisiana, and settled in what is now Red River Parish. Here, June 1, 1801, he joined Company A, Twelfth Louisiana Volunteer Infantry, Confederate States army, and was in the service until the close of the war, being wounded at Atlanta, Ga., in 1864. After the war he returned to this part of the State, and since January, 1876, has resided on his present plantation, which has been acquired through his own exertions, as when he started in life for himself he had nothing. In the month of April, 1868, he was married to Miss Mary J. Armistead, who died in October, 1873, of yellow fever, leaving two children: Robert and Albert. Two years later Mr. Giddens united his fortunes with that of Miss Marietta Brown, who was born in Louisiana, in 1850, and the following six children have blessed their union: Daniel, Brown, Ethel, Grover, Eloise and Mattie. Mr. Giddens is a stanch Democrat, and socially is a member of Silent Brotherhood Lodge No. 146, of the A. F. & A. M. of Coushatta.
Gen. Henry Gray was born January 19, 1816, in Lawrence District, S. C, of Prussian extraction. His ancestors, who emigrated from Prussia in the early settlement of the American colonies, many of them distinguished themselves in the service of their adopted country. His father was prominent in politics in South Carolina, and served for many years in the Legislature. Young Gray was graduated from South Carolina College in 1834 with distinguished honor. He immediately entered upon the study of the law, and was admitted to the bar in 1838. He completed his legal studies in the office of Col. William Murphy, of Greensboro, Ala. He located temporarily in Winston County, Miss., where he met Mr. S. S. Prentiss, who induced him to make that State his home. In 1839 he was elected district attorney, and served until 1845, when he declined remuneration.
In 1841 he married Miss Ellen Howard, a young lady of rare attainments, who contributed greatly in furthering the intellectual pursuits and political aspirations of her husband. In 1846 he was elected to the Legislature and served for one session and resigned. In 1850 he was a candidate for Congress on the Whig ticket and was defeated by a small majority. In 1851 he moved to Louisiana and settled in Bienville Parish, where he continued the practice of his profession and engaged largely in agriculture. In the campaign of 1856 (having left the Whig ranks) he was an elector on the Democratic ticket. In this memorable campaign he and Judah P. Benjamin canvassed the State together and were strong political friends. He was elected to the Legislature in 1860. In the same year he was a candidate for the United States Senate against Mr. Benjamin, and was defeated by only one vote. When the war came on he enlisted in the Confederate service as a private in a Mississippi regiment.
His ability was well known to President Davis, with whom he was on the most intimate terms. He was sent by President Davis from Virginia, where his regiment was then in service, to Louisiana, to organize a regiment. Accordingly he organized the Twenty-eighth Louisiana Infantry, of which he was elected colonel. The conspicuous part that this regiment played, and the distinguished services rendered in the Toche country, and in the battles of Mansfield and Pleasant Hill, are familiar in the military annals of the times. At the battle of Mansfield, one of the greatest achievements of the late war, Gen. Mouton was mortally wounded, and Gen. Gray was promoted brigadier-general and placed in command of his brigade. He commanded the troops in the Red River District and then in Arkansas, when he was elected to the Confederate Congress. This closed his military career. He proceeded immediately to Richmond and represented the North Louisiana District in the Confederate Congress in the last days of the Confederacy.
After the war was ended by the Confederate surrender Gen. Gray returned to his home, only to find his hard-earned competency swept away. He was elected to the State Senate soon after and took an active and conspicuous part. As an orator he had but few equals. About this time he lost his wife, which appears to have chilled his political aspirations. He resigned his seat in the Senate, and retired from politics, since which time he has persistently declined to become a candidate for any office. Though he engaged energetically in agricultural pursuits, he, like many of his compatriots in the Confederacy, was never able to rebuild his shattered fortunes. He lives in retirement near Coushatta, La., with his only child, the wife of W. J. Stothart.
Dr. Walter Eugene Hawkins is one among the very foremost of the professional men of the parish, and his ability and intelligence are acknowledged, not only by his medical brethren, but by all those who have employed his services. He has resided in this State all his life, for he was born here October 16, 1859, to M. O. Hawkins, who was born in North Carolina about 1831, and died in Robeline, La., February 22, 1883, having been a tiller of the soil throughout life. The mother, whose maiden name was Caroline Barbee, is the daughter of Hon. L. Barbee, of Fort Jessup, Sabine Parish, La., and is still living, her home also being at Fort Jessup. When Dr. Hawkins was a lad he accompanied his parents to Sabine Parish, and at nine years of age removed with them to Mansfield, some two or three years later returning to Sabine Parish, where he remained with them until he attained his majority.
The latter part of his education was received under Prof. Grainger at Many, Sabine Parish, and at the age of twenty years, finding himself thoroughly competent, he took up the occupation of teaching as a temporary pursuit and followed this occupation for two years, his leisure moments being devoted to the study of medicine. In the fall of 1882 he entered the Mobile Medical College of Alabama, in which institution he attended two full courses of lectures, graduating March 15, 1883, after which he at once located at East Point, Red River Parish, and has actively and successfully practiced his profession ever since. His practice has become large, and the admirable manner in which he succeeded with many difficult eases has won for him a wide-spread reputation.
He was married, February 26, 1885, to Miss Mollie C. Furniss, a daughter of Samuel M. Furniss, Sr., of Bossier Parish. Their marriage has resulted in the birth of three children: Mattie Viola, Walter Eugene and Arthur Loomis. The Doctor and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and the former is a member of the Masonic lodge, and in politics is a Democrat. For two years he has been deputy coroner of Red River Parish, and for four years has been postmaster of East Point, and is holding both positions at the present time. The Doctor possesses very agreeable, pleasant and kindly manners, and his cheery presence and encouraging and kindly words do much to aid in the convalescence of his patients.
Duke H. Hayes, notary public, of Coushatta, La., was born in Clarke County, Ga., January 8, 1819, to George and Mary (Hamilton) Hayes, -frho were Virginians, the father having been born in 1770, and died in Thomas County, Ga., iu 1840, the mother's birth having occurred in 1790, and her death in Thomas County, Ga., in 1871. Duke H. Hayes is next to the youngest of eight children born to his parents, only two of whom survive. He was a resident of Georgia from the time of his birth until 1860, when he settled in Bienville Parish, La., and in December, 1808, came to Coushatta.
Having been engaged in merchandising and farming in Georgia, he followed those callings in 1866-67, but after his removal to Red River Parish he devoted his attention to farming, his plantation being just below Coushatta. In 1871 he was appointed clerk of the court, and served about two years, since which time he has been deputy in some one of the parish offices. He has been notary public since 1873. He was married in Macon, Ga., iu 1839, to Miss Sarah Ann Munson, a native of South Carolina, who died iu Bienville Parish in 1867, leaving, besides her sorrowing husband, seven children to mourn their loss: Mary Ann, John E., Theodocia E., Anna C , Ella A., Bell H. and Sarah D. Mr. Hayes was married, a second time, in 1869, to Mrs. Eliza Cagle (mother of Dr. W. E. Cagle, dentist, who resides in Coushatta, La., who was born in Tennessee in 1830, and to them two children have been born: Eudora D. and Emmie M. In politics Mr. Hayes was formerly a Whig, but since the war has been a strong Democrat. He is now secretary of Silent Brotherhood Lodge No. 146, A. F. & A. M., and for his years (sixteen) of faithful service, he was presented by his lodge with a handsome gold-headed cane in 1887. He is also a member of Coushatta Chapter No. 35, E. A. M., of which he has been secretary for fifteen years. From 1880 to 1880 he was the private secretary of Judge L. B. Watkins; and from 1886 to the present time has been in the office of John C. Pugh. He and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church South, and he has been superintendent of the Sunday-school for eighteen years.
Samuel Q. Hollingsworth is one of the successful planters and merchants of this township. He was born in De Soto Parish, La., January 5, 1862, to James M. and Lizzie (Quarles) Hollingsworth. They had six children, three now living, our subject being the second eldest. He was educated in Shreveport, La., and Sewanee, Tenn., principally, and at the age of twenty-three years started out in life for himself. His father having been a farmer, he naturally turned his attention to the same pursuit. In 1884 he undertook the management of his father's farm of about 2,400 acres, of which 1,200 acres are under cultivation. Besides, he conducts a merchandising establishment, iu which his father invested $3,000, and, taking it altogether, he is kept pretty busy. He was married, December 1, 1885, to Miss Nina Arnold, a native of Texas, born iu 1866, and to their union have been born three children: Clifford, Arnold and Samuel. They are all members of the Episcopal Church. In his political views Mr. Hollingsworth affiliates with the Democratic party, and, although he takes no active part iu polities, he is always willing to assist in matters of interest to his party.
L. M. Howard is the proprietor of the People's Telegraph Line, and is also the owner of an excellent livery stable at Coushatta. He was born in Winston County, Miss., June 4, 1851, son of J. J. J. and Sarah L. (Reeves) Howard, both of whom were born in Charleston, S. C. (the latter in 1823), and died in Winston County, Miss., and Bienville Parish, La., in 1851 and 1865, respectively, the father being about fifty years of age at the time of his death. L. M. Howard is the younger of two children born to his mother's second marriage, and when two months old was brought to Bienville Parish, La., and here was reared to manhood, first attending the common schools and then Mount Lebanon University, subsequently entering the normal department of a fine educational institution at Bastrop, La. Alter teaching school in Morehouse Parish for one year, he, in January, 1870, went to Texas, but two years later came to Coushatta. Here he was elected clerk of the court of Red River Parish in 1880, and, after serving one term, was deputy in the same office four years. In 1888 he opened a livery establishment at this point, but prior to this, in 1883, had built the People's Telegraph Line from this point to Natchitoches, and these two enterprises is managing successfully. The line is thirty miles long, and was built at a cost of $1,250.
He is a wide-awake and enterprising gentleman, and as a business man has been a success. He was married in September, 1877, to Miss Mollie Jones, who was born in Tennessee in September, 1857, and by her is the father of one child—L. Benton, who was born June 9, 1883. Mr. Howard is a Democrat, and, socially, belongs to Silent Brotherhood Lodge No. 146, of the A. F. & A. M , and Red River Lodge No. 11, of the A. O. U. W. He is deeply interested iu all public enterprises, and has given liberally of his means in their support.
H. A. Huntley is the only child born to the marriage of George W. and Carrie S. (Epperson) Huntley, the former a native of the Old Dominion, and the latter of Mississippi. The father was one of the prominent and well-known men of his day, and for a number of years was principal of a large school at Raymond, Miss. He served in the wars of that State, and being an ardent Southerner, he took the part of the Confederates during the Rebellion, first serving as lieutenant, and later being promoted to the captaincy of his company. He was killed at Griffin, Ga., in 1864. His widow yet survives him, and is a member of the Missionary Baptist Church. H. A. Huntley is a native of Hinds County, Miss., his birth occurring on January 23, 1858. He received a good education at Raymond, and at fifteen years of age began for himself as deputy in the circuit clerk's office, where he remained a number of years. He wedded Miss Mary L. Wardlaw on February 20, 1879, who was born in the same State as our subject. Five children have blessed their union: George W., Henry A., Mary L., and two deceased. Besides being a merchant with about $2,500 capital, and conducting a trade annually amounting to about $8,000, Mr. Huntley cultivates about 250 acres of land. He is a popular and well-known citizen, is a member of the Masonic, Knights of Pythias and Knights of Honor fraternities. Mrs. Huntley belongs to the Baptist Church.
C. D. Jones. One of the well-known and enterprising planters of Red River Parish, is he whose name forms the subject for this brief sketch. A native Louisianan, his birth occurred March 22, 1847, being the fourth in a family of seven children born to the marriage of Daniel P. and Susan (O'Quin) Jones, who were natives of Pennsylvania and Louisiana, respectively. The father was a mechanic by occupation, served his country honorably through the Mexican War, and died in 1855, preceded by his wife in 1852, the latter being a member of the Baptist Church. The immediate subject of this notice received his schooling in the parish of Avoyelles, and at the immature year of fourteen, began life's battle for himself by farming.
In 1874 he was united in wedlock with Katie, daughter of J. D. Cawthon, and eight children have blessed them named as follows: May, Lula, Eunice, Carrie, W alter, Howard, Katie and George. The three first named are deceased. By hard work and perseverance, Mr. Jones has acquired a plantation of 250 acres, seventy-five of which are under cultivation. For the past eighteen years he has been manager of a large plantation of 800 acres, which is all under cultivation. He is a Mason, a member of the A. O. U. W., and contributes liberally from his means in the support of all laudable public enterprises.
John A. Jones is a prominent young planter of Red River Parish, La., and since 1887 has identified himself with the progress and development of the agricultural interests of the parish. He was born in Nashville, Tenn., May 0, 1855, being the second of a family of six children, four sons and two daughters, three sons and one daughter being now alive, born to John H. and Susannah C. (Nebblet) Jones, the former a native of Wales, and the latter of Tennessee. The father who led the life of a merchant, died in Coushatta, La., in 1867, having located there in 1860, but his widow still survives him, her home being in this town. John A. Jones, the immediate subject of this biography, was but five years old when his parents removed thither from Nashville, and all his youth and the first years of his manhood were spent in this town, in the schools of which he received his early education.
During this time he was employed in the capacity of clerk, but in 1887 he determined to devote his attention to agriculture, and accordingly came to his present plantation, first leasing the property, and in 1890 purchasing it, it containing 200 acres of excellent land, nearly half of it being under cultivation. Mr. Jones is a Democrat, politically, and while a resident of Coushatta, he served as deputy sheriff and deputy marshal several years, and upon another occasion was deputy clerk of the parish. The greater part of his life has been spent here, and he is, therefore, well known to her citizens and commands respect from all classes. His life has been characterized by many deeds of kindness and personally, and in every relation and duty of life he has been liberal, generous and high minded.
Dr. P. A. Lee is a dentist, whose skill has won him a large practice, and he holds a high place iu the estimation of his fellow-citizens. He was born in Natchitoches (now Red River) Pariah, La., August 14, 1849, and is a son of Benjamin S. and Mary P. (Reddy) Lee, both of whom were born in the State of Alabama, and emigrated to Louisiana at an early day, locating in what is now Red River Parish, where he purchased a big plantation, which he conducted until moving to Mansfield, in 1881.
He has now a large fruit and cotton farm, and turns his attention to growing fruit, in which he has been very successful. He was in the latter part of the late war, taking part in the battle of Mansfield, and was a member of the police jury of Red River Parish for some time. He was twice married, his first wife bearing him six children, four now living, and his second marriage resulted in the birth of two children. In Red River Parish, La., the subject of this sketch received his rearing and education, being an attendant of the common schools, but he was so fortunate as to complete his education in New Orleans. He began the study of dentistry at the age of twenty-two years, and graduated from a college of that city in 1873, after which he entered upon his practice in Coushatta, but removed six mouths later to Cleburne, Johnson County, Tex., where he remained about fifteen months. At the end of this time he came back to Coushatta, owing to ill health, and here soon won a large and paying practice, becoming well known throughout Red River, Sabine, De Soto, Caddo and Natchitoches Parishes. He is considered a very tine and skillful dentist, and his charges are always reasonable. He was married in November, 1873, to Miss Pamelia Herring, by whom he has five children: Lillie E., Elmo, Benjamin, Lewis and Robert. The Doctor is a member of the Masonic fraternity, the A. O. U. W., and in his political views, is a Democrat. He was assessor of Red River Parish for the year 1882. He is now preparing a dental book, on Mechanical Dentistry, of general information, illustrated, which he expects to have issued in the near future, which will be of great value to those interested in dentistry.
He still owns his little home in Coushatta. Paul Lisso is the senior member of the general mercantile firm of Lisso & Brother, of Coushatta La., which has become well known for honest, upright dealing, as well as for the reasonable price of its goods, throughout this section. These brothers are the sons of A. M. Lisso, who was born in Konig, Prussia, iu 1824, and came to the United States in 1846, dying in the city of New Orleans, La., iu 1867. After his arrival in this country, he spent about two years iu St. Louis, and in 1848 came to what is now Bed River Parish, La., establishing a mercantile store at Springville, a mile and a half east of the present town of Coushatta.
Here he resided until 1865, then came to Coushatta, and erected the first store in the place, a log building 40x20 feet, which stood a little southwest of the present store building, which belongs to his sons. He moved to New Orleans in 1865, to educate his children, and left his business in the hands of his brothers, Marks and Jules Lisso, who, after his death, succeeded him, the firm changing to Lisso & Brother in 1865. In 1879. Paul Lisso began business in his present store, and he and his brother are now partners. Paul was born at Springville, La., August 22, 1854, and was educated iu New Orleans. In 1879 he was married to Miss Carrie Phillips, who was born in Natchitoches, January 15, 1858, to Jacob Phillips and wife. Of her union with Mr. Lisso, four children have been born: Cora Lee, Bertie, Essie and an infant yet unnamed.
Mr. Lisso is a Democrat, a member of the I. O. B. B, and A. 0. K. S. B., and connected with the Jewish Widows and Orphans' Home, of New Orleans, La. He and his brother do an annual business of $100,000, for, in addition to their mercantile establishment, they deal extensively in cotton. Samuel Lisso, the junior member of the firm, was also born in Springville, La., January 12, 1853. He, like his brother, received good educational advantages, and in 1885 became a member of the above-mentioned firm. He was married September 15,1875, to Miss Mary B. Phillips, of Natchitoches, born April 26, 1854, and died at Coushatta, La., November 4, 1884, leaving her sorrowing husband with two children to care for: Paul M. and Eoy. Samuel is also a Democrat, and belongs to Silent Brotherhood Lodge No. 140, A. F. & A. M., at Coushatta, the A. O. U. W., the A. L. of H. and the I. O. B. B. The mother of Paul and Samuel died in 1854.
J. R. McGoldrick. There are a number of men prominently identified with the mercantile interests of Red River Parish, La., but none among them are more deserving of mention than Mr. McGolclriek, who, although not old in years, is yet a substantial business man. He was born in Macon, Ga., November 22, 1847, son of Dr. R. H. and Martha L. (Munson) McGoldrick, who were born, the first iu Maryland and the latter in South Carolina.
Dr. E. H. McGoldrick died in Decatur County, Ga., December 25, 1853. Mrs. McGoldrick died in Coushatta, La., on November 13, 1886. J. R. McGoldrick is the younger of two children, both of whom are living, and in his youth a common-school education was given him. At the age of sixteen years he joined Company A, Twenty-ninth Battalion, Georgia Cavalry, of which he became third sergeant, and for three years served the Confederate cause faithfully and well, being under Gen. Hood in Middle Florida and Eastern Georgia. In 1866 Mr. McGoldrick came to Louisiana and settled in Bossier Parish, shortly afterward removing to Shreveport, where he made his home for some seven years, afterward living in Arkansas for about three years. The following two years were again spent in Shreveport, but about 1878 he came to Coushatta, and for one year was an employee of Lisso & Scheen, after which he opened a mercantile establishment of his own in the management of which he has been very successful. On October 11, 1881, he was appointed postmaster of the town, and has held the office with ability ever since. He was married February 15, 1879, to Miss Sarah D. Hayes, who was born in Decatur County, Ga., May 29, 1859, and to them four daughters have been born: Willie C, Theodocia, Sarah O. and Tiny. Mr. McGoldrick is a Democrat in politics, and belongs to Silent Brotherhood Lodge No. 143, of the A. P. & A. M., Coushatta Chapter No. 35, E. A. M., and the A. L. of H. He is one of the foremost business men of the town, and in his business transactions naught has ever been said to his discredit, but much in his praise.
John Marston is one of the leading planters of Red Riven Parish, La., and was born in that State on May 6, 1835. His parents are Henry and Abbie (Johnston) Marston, the father being a native of Boston, Mass., and the mother of South Carolina. His father was born in 1795, emigrated to Louisiana iu 1821, and settled in New Orleans, where he began the merchandising business. After conducting this business for four years he sold out and followed farming for a number of years, but later became cashier of the Nashville Union Bank, and has also held the office of parish treasurer. He died in 1886, his widow still surviving him and living in Clinton, La., she is a member of the Baptist Church. Of the ten children born to them, three are now living, John being the fourth in order of birth. He was educated iu Nashville, Tenn., at the Weston Military Institute. At the age of twenty-two years having decided to start out for himself, he accepted a position with a railroad company, but remained with them only three years. February 17, 1859, he married Miss Emily Hochard, also a native of this State, and this union has been blessed with five children: Elizabeth, Henry, John, George and William. He has a large plantation owning 1,000 acres of land, 450 acres of which are under cultivation, the farm being well stocked, and upon which is located a mill and cotton gin.
He is a member of Clinton Lodge No. 27, I. O. O. F., and has held every office in the same. He was also president of the police jury for eight years. He and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church South, and are respected citizens of this county.
J. F. Pierson. This talented lawyer, who has achieved such au excellent reputation for legal ability at the Coushatta and other bars, was born in Pike County, Ala., October 3, 1844, being the ninth of ten children, four of whom are living, born to William and Mary (Collins) Pierson, who were born in South Carolina and Georgia, in 1808 and 1811, and died in Natchitoches, La., and Bienville Parish, La., in 1885 and 1848, respectively. They removed from Pike County, Ala., in the fall of 1848 and settled in Bienville Parish, which was laid out that year, but was in a very primitive condition. Mr. Pierson brought with him four negroes, and was worth in all, from $1,800 to $2,000, and remained on the plantation on which he settled until the fall of 1860, exclusively engaged in planting, but in that year sold his plantation, stock, all his negroes, with the exception of three, for $30,000, reserving his family horse and carriage and all his household effects.
This is a good illustration of how rapidly money could be accumulated in Louisiana at that day, his being an average increase of the prosperity of the settlers from 1847 up to the opening of the Rebellion. J. F. Pierson, the immediate subject of this biography, was a student in the common schools from 1854 to 1859, and from the latter year until 1802 he attended Mount Lebanon University, being a painstaking, intelligent and faithful student. In the fall of that year he joined Company C, Third Louisiana Infantry, and the following year was captured at Vicksburg, being exchanged in 1864. From that time until Lee's surrender he served in the Trans-Mississippi Department, proving himself a true and tried soldier.
In 1865, after his return home, he began the study of law and in the mouth of August, 1869, was licensed to practice in the Supreme Court at Natchitoches. In May, 1875, he came to Coushatta from Bienville Parish and here has since continued the practice of his profession, winning golden opinions for himself, in regard to his ability as an all-around lawyer, from the members of the legal fraternity of this section. He is a forcible and convincing speaker, and his indomitable energy has enabled him to overcome what at times seemed insurmountable difficulties. He is a Democrat, politically, a member of the Silent Brotherhood Lodge No. 146, of the A. F. & A. M. of Coushatta, which lodge is in a flourishing condition. In November, 1865, Miss Amanda J. Thomas became his wife, and in time the mother of his four children: Edward, Thomas, Reuben A. and Malcolm. Mrs. Pierson was born in Alabama in 1846, and is a daughter of D. K. and Elizabeth (Ryan) Thomas. She is an earnest member of the Baptist Church and an intelligent, cultured and charitable lady.
George M. Powell, one of the leading merchants and planters of Red River Parish, is a native Alabamian, his birth occurring in Bibb County on April 23, 1845. His parents, Charles M, and Sarah (Johnston) Powell, were natives of North Carolina and Georgia, respectively, were the parents of ten children (our subject being the seventh), were farmers by occupation, were members of the Baptist Church, and were honest, honored and law-abiding people. The father died in the year 1881, but his widow yet survives him at an advanced age, and resides in Perry County, Ala. George M. was reared to manhood in his native county, receiving his education at the primitive log school-house of that day. At the age of twenty-four he began life's battle upon his own responsibility by farming, and having nothing to commence with, his subsequent career of success is the direct result of his own energy and perseverance.
Espousing the cause of the South during the sixties, he became a private in the Eleventh Alabama Infantry (Company F), and was a participant in the engagements of Richmond, the Wilderness and Petersburg, where he was wounded iu the left side by a minie-ball. By reason of this he was sent to the hospital at Richmond, and later received a furlough and went home to visit friends and relatives. At the time of the surrender h was in Georgia, and from there he came to Mississippi, and a year later to Louisiana, which State has since been his home. On January 15, 1871, Miss Silia Marti became his wife, and to their union seven children have been born: Charles, Mary, William A., Sarah V., George M., Rosie D. and Walter M. The first two and next to the last-named are deceased. The mother, who was a member of the Roman Catholic Church, died on September 25, 1884. Mr. Powell is a member of the Masonic fraternity, and is a prosperous planter, -now owning about 1,000 acres of valuable land, about 400 acres of which are under a good state of cultivation.
John C. Pugh. One of the best known names at the Louisiana bar, and now one of the leading and solid men of Coushatta, is Mr. Pugh, who is a native of De Soto Parish, La., his birth occurring on March 27, 1860, he being the fourth of five children born to William and Mollie (Tidwell) Pugh, who were born in Alabama in 1825 and 1834, respectively. The father was a farmer by occupation, and about 1836 came to Louisiana, and followed his chosen calling in De Soto Parish until his death, which occurred in 1872, the farm on which he settled being still occupied and owned by his widow. The paternal grandfather, Jesse Pugh, was born in Wales, and passed from life in De Soto Parish when about eighty years of age. The maternal grandparents were born in Ireland and died in De Soto Parish, where they lived to a ripe old age. John C. Pugh was first a student in the public schools of Louisiana, and for a short time attended the Center High School in Shelby County, Tex., and although he was a fair student upon leaving this institution, the most of his education has been acquired by self-application and contact with the world in his professional, as well as in a social capacity. In 1881 he began the study of law at Mansfield, in the office of Elam & Sutherland, the former member of the firm being a congressman from this district. Mr. Pugh was admitted to the bar in October, 1881, in the Supreme Court at Shreveport, after which he opened au office in Mansfield, where he continued practicing until 1886, when he came to Coushatta. In 1884 he was elected district attorney for the Tenth District, composed of the parishes of Red River and De Soto, and, owing to the ability with winch he served, he was re-elected to this position in 1888, by the Democratic party, with which he has long affiliated. He is one of the leading lawyers of this part of the State, for he reads a case well and thoroughly before he undertakes it, and although he is a man of unassuming manner, he possesses much firmness. He was married on April 12, 1887, to Miss Carrie Gahagan, who was born in Red River Parish, La., in 1865, and their union has resulted in the birth of two children: Lamar and Crea. Mr. Pugh is a member of the Missionary Baptist Church. He is a great believer in education, and is now connected with two prominent institutions of learning. He is president of the board of trustees of the Coushatta Male and* Female College, and one of the trustees of Keatehie Male and Female College.
W. P. Scarborough is the president of the Bayou Pierre Drainage Company (Limited) and manager of the East Point Co-operative Association (Limited), and is also a worthy planter of Red River Parish. He is a native of Webster Parish, La., bis birth occurring September 14, 1852, being a son of W. E. D. and Jane (Powell) Scarborough, both of whom were Virginians. They first removed to Mississippi, thence to Louisiana in 1835, and located in Webster Parish, but remained only a short time, when they made one more move, this time settling in Natchitoches (now Red River) Parish. He settled on land where the town of Mount Plat now stands, and here he followed the occupation of planting for years. In 1856 he went to New Orleans and began dealing in cotton and groceries, continuing both these occupations with good results until 1861, when he died at Monroe, La., his wife dying in 1853. There are two children surviving them: Mrs. Emily J. Reed, of Charlotte, N. C., and W. P., who was reared by his grandmother on Red River, his early days being devoted to planting and to attending the common schools. In 1866 he went to Mount Lebanon, La., where he attended school for two years, after which he returned to Mansfield, whore he continued to pursue his studies. Planting and merchandising have been his chief callings through life, and he now owns land to the amount of 8,000 acres, with about 2,800 acres under cultivation. He owns a store at Williams, one at Mount Flat and one at West Point, on Bayou Pierre; is a stockholder in a large store at East Point, and in all respects is one of the leading men of Red River Parish. He was married, in 1877, to Miss Dollie Miuter, by whom he has one child, William C. The Scarborough family is of English descent, and members of the family were early settlers of Virginia. Although the subject of this sketch was left an orphan in early youth, he has always made good use of the opportunities offered him, and by his own efforts has succeeded in obtaining an enviable position on the "ladder of success."
L. E. Scheen. As a merchant Mr. Scheen has become well known throughout Red River Parish, and as he has been closely identified with each vital interest of this section he fully deserves the confidence and respect of the numerous friends that have sprung up around him. He was born in Bienville Parish November 28, 1858, to J. H. and Nancy A. (Bradley) Scheen. The father died in Coushatta April 2, 1887, at the age of fifty-nine years, but his widow survives him, is a resident of Coushatta, and has attained the age of fifty-six years. L. B. Scheen is the eldest of seven children living, and came to this parish with his parents in 1875, both of whom were young people at that time, and in this parish the father conducted a mercantile establishment with good results, and at the time of his death left his family in good circumstances. He was a man highly esteemed in this section, but met his untimely death at the hands of an assassin. L. E. Scheen was given the advantages of the common schools, and being an industrious and ambitious boy, he made fair progress in his studies, and as he had become familiar with mercantile life iu his father's store he began following that occupation as a means of livelihood in 1883, and by his fair dealing, enterprise and industry he does an annual business of $20,000. He is one of the leading merchants of this part of the State, and has shown himself to be a shrewd and far-sighted financier. He has always supported the Democratic party by his influence and vote, and socially is a member of Silent Brotherhood Lodge No. 146, of the A. F. & A. M.
Maj. James W. Sandiford, a prominent and honored citizen of Red River Parish, La., and its present representative in the State Legislature, was born near Augusta, Richmond County, Ga., June 9, 1828, being a son of John and Mary (Wood) Sandiford, who were South Carolinians by birth. Maj. Sandiford is the eighth of their nine children, four sons and five daughters, but is the only one of this large family now living. All the children reached maturity, and but two attained the age of thirty years. James W. was but four years old when his mother was taken from him and was twelve years of age when his father passed from life. Thus thrown upon his own resources at a tender age, he started out manfully to take up the duties of life for himself, and has ever since depended entirely upon himself for a livelihood. For two years after the death of his father he worked for an uncle, Thomas Wood, of Herd County, Ga., and at fourteen years of age he accompanied another uncle, John Wood, to Carroll County, Miss., where he remained for three years, working as a farm hand and attending school. He then left school and entered the service of the United States iu the war with Mexico, but the requisition for the State of Mississippi being full, he was not permitted to serve his country in that struggle. He then came to Louisiana, and took up his residence in Bossier Parish, where for nine years he was engaged at farming, at the end of which time he removed to what is now Red River Parish, and located on the right bank of Red River, opposite the present town of Coushatta. Meanwhile, two years before leaving Bossier Parish, he had taken up the vocation of a teacher, and continued to teach school from 1854 to 1860. Upon the breaking out of the Rebellion, or in the spring of 1861, he organized a company of cavalry for the Confederate service, but as the Confederacy was receiving no cavalry from Louisiana at that time, he disbanded his company.
In July, 1861, he helped to organize Company A, Twelfth Louisiana Infantry, and entered it as a second lieutenant. He was soon promoted to the rank of first lieutenant, and was made adjutant of his regiment. He continued in those capacities with the same company and regiment, until October, 1864, participating in the battles of Belmont, Mo., Island No. 10, Baker's Creek, Jackson, Dalton, Resaca, New Hope Church, Lookout Mountain and Atlanta. In October, 1864, owing to reduced health, he was retired from the service for one year, at the end of which time the war had closed.
Returning to his home in Red .River Parish, he turned his attention to farming, and this has been his chief pursuit ever since. In 1865 he located on the plantation which he now occupies, nine miles above Coushatta, on the left bank of the Red River, which place has been his home ever since. His plantation is well improved and very desirably situated, nearly all of it being above the point of overflow. Mr. Sandiford was married June 7, 1846, to Miss Nancy Applewhite, who died in 1851, leaving an only daughter, Mary, who is still living. January 26, 1865, his second union took place, the maiden name of his wife being Martha E. Armistead, his present wife. By her he is also the father of one daughter, Carrie, who is now a young lady.
I n November, 1876, Mr. Sandiford was elected to the office of State senator from the Twenty-second Senatorial District, composed of the parishes of Red River, De Soto, Sabine and Natchitoches, being elected on the Democratic ticket, which he had always voted. He served for three years, or until 1879, and his reputation as a pure and intelligent legislator is the very best. His services while a member of this body were so satisfactory that in April, 1888, he was elected to the Lower House of the State Legislature, from the parish of Red River, and is still holding this office. He is a man who possesses much force of character and executive ability, and is recognized as a man of sound judgment, and one whose opinions are worthy the respect and confidence of all. In all circles, whether of a civil, military or political character, he has discharged his duties in a manner which reflects great credit upon himself, and which shows him to be an honorable, upright man, and a loyal and patriotic citizen. By reason of his long residence and public service he is extensively known throughout the valley of the Red River, and all who have the fortune to know him, respect and honor him.
James J. Stanfill is a planter and the popular and courteous proprietor of the Planters' Hotel at Coushatta, La. His birth occurred in Thomas County, Ga., March 5, 1850, being the younger of two children born to I. J. and Martha (Browning) Stanfill, both of whom were native Georgians, the former born in 1823 and the latter in 1825, their deaths occurring in Thomas County, Ga., in 1866, and Leon County, Florida in 1855, respectively. James J. Stanfill was taken to Florida by his parents in early childhood, and in that State he remained until he was twenty years of age, his knowledge of the three E ' s being obtained in the common schools.
He came from that State to Louisiana, and first resided in Carroll Parish, but in 1878 became a resident of Coushatta, which place has since been his abiding place. By his own good management he has become the owner of some 800 acres of fine land, but in addition to managing this he opened a hotel in Coushatta in 1882, the building being erected in that year, and his establishment has become a popular resort for the traveling public, for Mr. Stanfill is courteous and obliging to his guests, and his terms are reasonable. In 1880 Mrs. Mary E. McCord, who was born in Arkansas, in 1840, became his wife, and to them three children have been born: Mattie (born in 1882), Thomas (born in 1885), and James (born in 1887), all bright and interesting little children. Mrs. Stanfill is a daughter of I. C. and Charity (Chipman) Ainsworth, who were born in Mississippi in 1825, and died in 1866, the former's death occurring on October 9. Mr. Stanfill has always been a Democrat in politics, and has served two years as deputy sheriff of the parish, making a faithful and efficient official. He became a member of the Masonic fraternity at Lake Providence, La., in 1872.
L. W. Stephens, merchant of Coushatta, La. Among the many enterprises necessary to complete the commercial resources of a town or city, none is of more importance to the community than that of the general merchant. Prominent iu this calling is Mr. Stephens, whose establishment is well fitted up, his stock of goods being large and well selected. He was born in Arcadia, La., March 19, 1848, the second of six children, three now living, born to John F. and Elizabeth (Wardlaw) Stephens, who were born in South Carolina and Alabama, in 1813 and 1820, and died in Covington, Ky., and Coushatta, La., in 1883 and 1882, respectively.
The father was a talented lawyer, and for a number of years was a member of the Coushatta bar, having come to the State of Louisiana in 1848. L. VV. Stephens attended the schools of Shasta until he attained his sixteenth year, after which he spent two years in Mount Lebanon University. In January, 1865, he joined the Twenty-seventh Louisiana Infantry, Confederate States army, serving until the close of the war, after which he returned home. In 1866 he entered a dry goods store as a clerk, continuing in this capacity one year, after which he was a student for the same length of time in a select school, under the management of J. Q. Prescott, at Sparta, La.
In 1868 he came to Coushatta, and the following year began conducting a mercantile establishment at Lake Village, carrying on the business until 1883, when he once more returned to Coushatta, and the same year opened the doors of his present establishment to the public. He is a stirring and honorable business man, and as he is pleasant, agreeable and accommodating in his manners, his present large trade is fully merited. He is a stanch Democrat, and in July, 1889, was elected president of the police jury, a position he still holds. He is a member of Silent Brotherhood Lodge No. 146, of the A. F. & A. M., of Coushatta and he and his wife, whom he married in 1869 and whose maiden name was Sarah M. Sweatborn, are members of the Missionary Baptist Church. She was born in South Carolina March 23, 1847, and has borne Mr. Stephens the following children: Lawrence P., Benjamin S., John P., Harry T., Thomas P. and Lizzie.
W. H. Wamsley is the assessor and deputy sheriff of Red River Parish, La., and is a man well fitted to fill each position, for he is conscientious in the discharge of every duty and faithful to every trust. He was born in what is now Red River Parish, La., January 2, 1855, being the eldest of five children born to T. C. and Alice P. (McKinney) Wamsley, the former of whom was born September 12, 1822, and died in 1886, and the latter born in Mississippi, and died in 1874, when about forty years of age. They were early settlers of this parish, and the father filled the office of justice of the peace here for some twenty years, and was a man whom to know was to like and respect. W. H. Wamsley received a common-school education, and upon commencing the battle of life for himself he engaged in farming, continuing until 1880, coming in February, 1881, to Coushatta, and serving from that year to 1888 as deputy sheriff of this parish. On January 2, 1888, he was appointed to the position of assessor by Gov. Nicholls, and has filled the office with ability up to the present time. He has always supported the men and measures of the Democrat party, and being one of the best known and most intelligent young men of the parish, possessing numerous admirable qualities, he is sure to make a success of his life. Socially he is a member of Silent Brotherhood Lodge No. 146, of the A. F. & A. M., of Coushatta.
Abraham Williams is the leading merchant and business man of East Point, and by excellent business ability and foresight he has built up one of the largest and most prosperous trades in the parish. Mr. Williams was born in Poland, Russia, November 10, 1852, a son of Bernard and Burthey Williams. The father came to America in 1852, and the subject of this sketch came with his mother in 1802, joining the husband and father in New Orleans, where a home had been prepared for them. While en route Abraham and his mother were detained fourteen months at New York City on account of the existing Civil War. His youth and early manhood were spent in New Orleans, but in 1880 he came to Red River Parish, and in February, 1881, located at East Point, where he has resided ever since, and where he has ever since been engaged at mercantile pursuits. He has been very successful, and now has an establishment which might grace any city, for it is exceptionally large, and his goods are well selected. His store comprises one large room, 45x25 feet, and two smaller rooms, each 10x45 feet, which contain all necessary plantation supplies. He is an exceptionally shrewd business man, but in his dealings has ever been the soul of honesty, and consequently has the good-will and respect of all. His marriage, which took place on September 10, 1883, was to Miss Mollie Klinger, by whom he has three children: Dora, Sol and Sadie.
Typing and Format by C. W. Barnum