Nov 12, 2021 - 09:01 am CST

Joe Austell Small Sr. was born in Chriesman, Texas in 1914. 

While his interest in magazines began in grade school, his big step into the publishing world happened when he sold his first article to Reader's Digest in 1946. 

Soon after that he pursued his goals to create his own publication and used his bedroom as his office. 

He then bought Western Sportsman during WWII. 

His most popular publication was True West, unsurprising as it is still in publication today. He began publishing in 1953 when he noticed that every time he ran a letter about Old West badmen in the sporting magazine, his mailbox would overflow. So he decided to create a new magazine that told the history of the American frontier. And because of the popularity of westerns in tv and movies at the time, the magazine took off!

True West Magazine Cover August 1977. 75 cents. Image of woman with horse near large tree branch. Article Titles: In Quest of a Coquillard Wagon; California's Killer Flood; Buried Treasure in Squirrel Gulch; The Mysterious Pinkerton; Uncle Billy Jacob's Story by Walt Coburn; Remembering Walt: Pat Coburn is interviewd about her late husband the "King of the Pulps"

Photo courtesy of True West Magazine

His goal was to share historical facts within his publication as he felt that historical non-fiction was more interesting than the fictionalized stories he was coming across in other publications. So, to ensure the good historical accuracy of the time, he employed historical consultants to ensure his publications were as historically accurate as possible. 

Small also published the magazines Frontier Times, not founded by him, but purchased in 1955, Wanderlust, Old West, Relics, Gold!, Badman, and Horse Tales: True Stories of Great Horses. He would often write editorials for this last one and would sign with his nickname ‘Hosstail’ - derived from his middle name, Austell. 

Small would give many new writers a start in the magazine world through his publications.

Fred Gipson, J. Frank Dobie, and Joe Austell Small Sr. in front of a building

Fred Gipson, J. Frank Dobie, and Joe Austell Small (from left), shown circa 1955. Photo courtesy of True West Magazine

He was known all over Texas and was unsurprisingly friends with other western writers of the time like Fred Gipson, the author of Old Yeller. Walter Prescott Webb and J. Frank Dobie were even known to write for his publications on occasion. 

Small died on March 9, 1994, at seventy-nine after a lengthy illness and is buried in Austin Memorial Park.

Headstone Joe Austell Small, Sr. Mar. 18, 1914 - Mar. 9, 1994

Oct 12, 2021 - 08:15 am CDT

Evelyn Maurine Carrington was born in Austin in 1898.

After attending Austin High School she earned three degrees from the University of Texas. A B.A. in 1919, an M.A. in 1920 and a Ph.D. in 1930, with additional work at the Institute for Juvenile Research, the Michael Reese Hospital in Chicago, and at Columbia University. 

Between 1930 and 1941 she taught educational psychology at Sam Houston State Teachers College (now Sam Houston State University) and after that, between 1941 and 1952 she was on the faculty at Texas State College for Women (now Texas Woman's University). 

She also served for a time as the administrative director for the Children's Development Center in Dallas, as well as as psychologist and director of instruction at the Shady Brook schools. She then became staff psychologist at the Children's Medical Center in Dallas in 1955 and during her time there, she also lectured at Baylor University College of Dentistry.

She remained with the Children’s Medical Center center until 1973 and maintained a private practice in child psychology in Dallas during her tenure there.  

Throughout her career, she focused on children's learning, especially as related to the process of learning to read, the problems associated with aging, and mental health -even sponsoring the Mental Health Club while studying for her PhD. 

Her reputation extended beyond the world of academia. She was a delegate to two White House conferences and a member of the Governor's Commission on aging and needs of the elderly. 

When Ima Hogg and her family began the work to create the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health, Dr. Carrington was asked to join the committee that drafted the plans for the establishment of the Foundation. While working as the secretary of State Mental Hygiene she worked closely with Ima Hogg to draft the plans for the Foundation. 

She also served for a time as vice president of the Texas Society for Mental Health and president of the International Council of Women Psychologists. 

She was a fellow of the Texas Psychological Association and the American Psychological Association and authored several publications on the topic of mental health and psychology: Mental Health for Older People and Psychologist Looks at the Adolescent Girl in 1946, The Exceptional Child: His Nature and His Needs in 1951, and was the editor of Women in Early Texas in 1975. 

She died in Austin in October of 1985, and is buried in Oakwood Cemetery.

Headstone Dr. Evelyn M Carrington Beloved Daughter of William Leonidas Carrington and Bertha Bartlett Gray Aug 30 1898 - Oct 4 1985

 

 

Sep 03, 2021 - 01:44 pm CDT

Curtis Kent Bishop was born in Bolivar, Tennessee in 1912 and moved to Texas with his family while still a child.  

He attended Big Spring High School while working part time at the Austin American-Statesman, and after graduating in 1934 he went to the University of Texas where worked on the student magazine the Ranger as the editor and the student newspaper, the Daily Texan as a sports reporter. 

After earning his bachelors degree, he went to work as a reporter for the Austin Tribune and made his job at the Austin American-Statesman a permanent position where he wrote a column called "This Day in Texas" which was syndicated throughout the state. 

During World War II Bishop served with the Foreign Broadcast Intelligence Service in Latin America and in the Pacific Theater. 

When he came back to Texas he continued his writing career and became known for his books rather than his newspaper reporting. 

He wrote about sports and life in the American West. Several of his westerns were even made into motion pictures. 

In total he wrote more than fifty books, though, some of them were published under a pen name. As well as several hundred magazine articles for youth readers, like Half-Time Hero (1956), and Dribble Up (1956), The First Texas Ranger: Jack Hays (1959), and Lots of Land (1949) which was written with James Bascom Giles. 

Book: Lots of Land, Written by Curtis Bishop from material compiled by Bascom Giles, Commissioner of General Land Office of Texas

Photo courtesy of the Austin History Center

Because of the work he did while writing Lots of Land  with Bascom Giles, the General Land Office of Texas hired Bishop to go through their archives. They were looking for help in preparing their case for the state of Texas during the Tidelands controversy 

- a legal dispute between the United States and Texas involved the title to 2,440,650 acres of submerged land in the Gulf of Mexico between low tide and the state's Gulfward boundary three leagues (10.35 miles) from shore

Bishop continued working for the Land Office after the dispute and at the time of his death in March of 1967, he was administrative assistant in the public relations department. 

Bishop was 55 years old when he died of a heart attack is buried in Austin Memorial Park.

Headstone of Curtis K. Bishop, Nov 10, 1912 - Mar 17, 1967

 

Aug 25, 2021 - 02:59 pm CDT

John Coleman Horton was born in 1905 in the city of Monticello, Florida and moved to Wyoming when he was still in school. While attending high school he joined the Wyoming National Guard as part of Troop “E”, 155th Cavalry. 

He graduated with a bachelor of science degree from the U.S. Military Academy in New York in 1929 and was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Field Artillery. 

Photograph of General John Horton

From there, his military career took him all over the United States and the world. He entered flying training at March Field in California and graduated from Advanced Flying Training at Kelly Field in Texas where he stayed on as a flying instructor until 1931. 

At this point he was transferred to Hawaii where he served as tactical pilot, in addition to being squadron adjutant, mass officer, and supply officer. He also assisted Lieutenant William Cocke in the construction of a sailplane - an aircraft with a wingspan of 60 feet that established a new world record for sustained soaring flight by remaining aloft for more than 21 hours in December, 1931.

He returned to Randolph Field for four years before being transferred to San Diego, California, in 1939 for duty as an Air Corps supervisor at the Ryan School of Aeronautics and commanding officer of the Air Corps Training Detachment at Lindberg Field.

Ordered to staff duty with the newly organized headquarters of the West Coast Air Corps Training Center at Moffett Field, California, in February 1941, he remained with the center when it moved to Santa Ana, California. And as assistant for operations, he was involved in the selection of sites and establishment of new flying schools from New Mexico to California.

Transferred to Roswell, New Mexico a year later, he became director of training for the Advanced Pilot Training and Bombardier Training School, and almost immediately became commander of Roswell Army Airfield and commandant of the school.

In 1945 General Horton entered the Army-Navy Staff College, Randolph Field, Texas and when he completed his course, he was transferred to the U.S. Air Forces, Europe, with headquarters at Wiesbaden, Germany where he served as director of military personnel, deputy for personnel, and assistant chief of staff for personnel.

He moved to London, England in 1948 and was attached to the American Embassy while he attended the Imperial Defense College. After which he returned to the US and was assigned to the Air University at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama until he joined the Air Defense Command headquarters, Colorado Springs, Colorado, as deputy chief of staff for personnel in 1952.

Four years later he transferred to Air Force headquarters, Washington, D.C., where he assumed duties as a member of the Personnel Council, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force.

After retiring from the military, he and his family relocated to Austin where his wife’s family home was. He studied business management at The University of Texas and became director of the Austin National Bank. He also spent time in community service, including the Austin Community Foundation.

Headstone Front: Horton   John Coleman, Jr. Sept 13, 1905 - Sept 29, 2001   Virginia Wilmot Roberdeau Feb 23, 1914 - July 15, 1988

He died in 2001 at the age of 96 and is buried in the Oakwood Cemetery Annex here in Austin. 

His decorations include the Legion of Merit for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services to the Government of the United States as Assistant Chief of Staff for operations at Headquarters Army Air Force Western Flying and Training Command, from 1944 to 1945, and the Cloud Banner Award. 

Back of Headstone Military Marker: John Coleman Horton Brig Gen US Air Force. World War II, Korea   Sep 13, 1905 - Sep 29, 2001

Aug 23, 2021 - 03:15 pm CDT

Zachary Thomson Scott was born in December 1880, in Fort Worth, Texas and grew up on his family’s ranch in Bosque County, Texas. He attended a private school near Fredericksburg, Virginia and was taught by his aunts, returning to Texas to attend the University of Texas medical school in Galveston. 

As he was living in Galveston at the time of the 1900 hurricane, he was actively involved in rescuing the many patients that were trapped by the floods.

After graduating in 1903 he began his practice in Clifton, Bosque County, but moved to Austin in 1909. He established the Austin Sanitarium with Thomas J. Bennett where he developed a life-long professional interest in Texas Tuberculosis Association and the treatment of TB, even  instituting the sale of tuberculosis seals in Texas - Beginning in 1907 seals were introduced as a way to help physicians fund tuberculosis hospitals or  sanitoriums. Still a fundraiser for the American Lung Association today the funding the seals provide has been expanded to include other respiratory diseases like lung cancer, asthma, COVID-19, and lung damage due to air pollution and second-hand smoke. 

During World War I, he served as a lieutenant commander in the navy and organized a medical, which was moved to the naval hospital in Gulfport, Mississippi, under his command. 

Portrait of Dr. Zachary Scott

Portrait of Dr. Scott courtesy of the Austin History Center

After the war he returned to Austin and served on the Austin Selective Service Board for many years. And in 1923 he established the Scott-Gregg Clinic with Frank C. Gregg and specialized in the treatment of tuberculosis. 

When the clinic closed in 1930 due to the Great Depression, Scott became Chief of Staff at Brackenridge Hospital where he served until he retired in 1947. 

When he retired he returned to his family ranch near Buda and began to breed cattle, crossing Santa Gertrude with Hereford cattle to form a new breed he called San Gerfords. 

He was also a ruling elder and trustee of University Presbyterian Church, and a member of the board of directors of the Capital National Bank of Austin from its creation in 1934 until his death. And he was active in the American Medical Association and the Texas Tuberculosis Association throughout his time in Austin. 

Dr. Zachary Thompson Scott died in Austin on January 19, 1964, and is buried in Austin Memorial Park.

Headstone Zachary Thompson Scott, M.D. Dec 25, 1880 - Jan 19, 1964   As a well spent day brings happy sleep, so life well used brings happy death, Leonardo Da Vinci

 

Aug 20, 2021 - 01:46 pm CDT

Herschel Thurman Manuel was born near Freetown, Indiana, on December 24, 1887. And after graduating from Brownstown High School in 1905 he earned his bachelor’s degree in Mathematics from DePauw University. Following this he earned his Masters in 1914 from the University of Chicago, and his Ph.D. from the University of Illinois in 1917. 

As 1917 was also the year the United States entered WWI, known as “The Great War” at the time, Manuel enlisted in the US Army.  When he was discharged in 1925, he began teaching at the University of Texas here in Austin.

Manuel cared deeply about bilingual education and received a grant that would allow him to conduct research specifically on the education of Spanish-speaking children. This resulted in a book, The Education of Mexican and Spanish-speaking Children in Texas in 1930. His follow-up to this came in 1965 with, Spanish-speaking Children of the Southwest: Their education and the Public Welfare

During this time he also began work with the League of United Latin American Citizens, a Texas organization that was founded to counter political disfranchisement, racial segregation, and discrimination of Latin Americans. (Still active today, the LULAC seeks to support the growth of the Mexican-American middle class)  

Manuel would often address LULAC meetings and contribute to its national publication, the LULAC News. He would argue that education was a birthright and that it was the responsibility of the state to provide it. 

Not at all neglecting his teaching responsibilities, Manuel was named supervisor of the University of Texas freshman testing program in 1935. He established the Testing and Guidance Bureau (known today as the Measurement and Evaluation Center) and created a series of bilingual parallel achievement tests in English and in Spanish called the Inter-American tests that were later published by the Educational Testing Service.

Manuel was also made a fellow of  Evaluation and Measurement of the American Psychological Association as well as a Diplomat in Counseling of the American Board of Examiners in Professional Psychology. 

Herschel retired from teaching in 1962, but was named Professor Emeritus of Educational Psychology and continued to work as president of Guidance Testing Associates in Austin until he also retired from this in 1975. 

Herschel Thurman Manuel died in March of 1976 and was buried in Austin Memorial Park.

Headstone Manuel, Herschel Thurman Dec. 24 1887 - Mar. 21 1976; Dorothy Broad Nov. 1 1898 - Dec. 6 1967

Aug 17, 2021 - 04:29 pm CDT

Known locally as the founder of the Austin Ballet Theater, Stanley Hall was born in Birmingham England in 1917. 

He began training in ballet at the age of twelve when a track and field coach suggested it as support training for sprinting, and with family in the theater it was a natural fit. 

By sixteen he had become an apprentice with the Vic-Wells Ballet after training for years with the Royal Ballet of London, working under Dame Ninette de Valois and Sir Frederick Ashton. 

During World War II Hall served in the Royal Navy on the H.M.S. London as a signalman. Over the course of the war his ship spent 14 months in the North Atlantic escorting Russian convoys and he later joined the Indian Ocean Fleet. While with them he earned a certificate for crossing the equator. He prized this certificate and kept it on display in his home. 

After his service, Hall rejoined his old ballet company, but went on to dance with Britain’s Metropolitan Ballet Company and joined the traveling dance troupe Les Ballets de Paris in London, which took him all over the world. 

He was touring with Roland Petit’s 1949 Carmen when the presenters backed out of the American tour, stranding them in Seattle, Washington. This proved to be a turning point for him as it turned out Petit had a friend in Hollywood, Howard Hughes, who brought the entire company down to film Carmen at the RKO studios in Southern California. Even though the production closed down before it was finished, Hall caught another break when Petit was hired to choreograph Hans Christian Anderson. This production is what launched his twelve year career in Hollywood, Broadway, television specials, and nightclub performances where he was able to work with celebrities like Agnes de Mille, Gene Kelly, Hanya Holm, Mary Martin, Bob Hope, Jane Russell, Cyd Charisse, Abbott and Costello, and so many more. 

By 1966 he was ready to retire from performing and was offered the position of artistic director with the Austin Civic Ballet. He moved to Austin in 1968, also taking a  position with the University of Texas as a ballet teacher. 

He served as artistic director of Austin Civic Ballet until 1972 but split with the board of directors. The conflict publicly focused on Hall’s choice to substitute a production of  Cinderella for the regular production of The Nutcracker with board members contending that The Nutcracker was an American (and Austin) Christmas tradition that provided a major source of annual ticket sales and should be the de facto performance for December. Hall, however, argued that he had chosen Cinderella for performance quality reasons, though there were more than a few rumors circulating that the true reason for his being removed was due to his homosexuality. 

Several other board members, a handful of instructors, and most  of the dancers left along with him.

Hall and the board members, dancers, and instructors who left ACB with him formed the Austin Ballet Theatre in February 1972. The Theatre became known for performing at the Armadillo World Headquarters, a large bar and music hall in South Austin that played rock and country music on most other nights. Despite this, by the next year the monthly shows brought in up to 700 people with each performance. 

Hall left the Theatre in 1986 after a disagreement with the board on financial decisions, and the Theatre closed soon after when they could no longer compete with the rival Ballet Austin (previously ACB).

Over three decades, he gained great renown for the training of a generation of famous dancers and was described as enigmatic, paternal, but also “an isolated man with a veneer of camp humor, a curious blend of movieland theatricality and genteel restraint.” His students described him as a friend and teacher, stating that he taught them not just ballet, but also social skills and even cooking.

Stanley Hall died on June 21, 1994, from a stroke after a fall at the age of 77. He is buried in Austin Memorial Park Cemetery.

And in 2013 he was inducted into the Austin Arts Hall of Fame.

Stanley Hall June 16, 1917 - June 21, 1994   Our teacher, choreographer, mentor, and friend

Aug 17, 2021 - 04:24 pm CDT

Noble Doss is best known for his “impossible catch” in 1940 when Texas took the National Championship title from Texas A&M, but this was only one moment in a life full of football and service to his country. 

He was born in Temple, Texas in 1920 and attended Temple High School before graduating from the University of Texas where he made a name for himself as an accomplished member of the Texas Longhorns football team, making that “impossible catch” that gave Texas the only points on the board for the 7-0 win that knocked the Aggies out of the Rose Bowl and is still one of the most famous images in school history. He is also the only player in UT history to lead the team in interceptions for three straight years.  

During World War II he enlisted and served as a Lieutenant with the US Navy in the Pacific Theater. 

Upon the completion of his service, he went straight back to the football field, but this time at the professional level. 

Chosen by the Philadelphia in the 11th round of the 1942 NFL Draft he played for the Eagles for two NFL championship games and earned a World Championship ring with their victory in 1948 against the Chicago Cardinals. When with the New York Yankees (AAFC) in 1949, he played alongside such greats as Tom Landry and Arnie Weinmeister. 

In an interview with ABC before he died he talks about his time playing football, his greatest catch, and what he sees as his greatest failure in the game. 

Longhorn Legend Noble Doss - YouTube

After he completed his time in the NFL he and wife returned to Austin where he got involved in Longhorn football again. He served for a time as the letterman representative to the Athletics Council, and was a charter member of the board of directors of the Greater Austin Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame. All while creating a successful life insurance business that he ran until he retired in 2001.

Noble was inducted into the Longhorn Hall of Honor in 1980 and, in 1995, into the Texas High School Football Hall of Fame. 

Noble Doss died on February 15, 2009 at the age of 88 in Austin, Texas and he is buried in Austin Memorial Park.

Headstone Doss Noble Webster, May 22,1920 - Feb 15, 2009. Dorothy Burwitz July 13,1919 - Jan 26,2006. June 4, 1941

 

Aug 17, 2021 - 03:50 pm CDT

Richard “Night Train” Lane was born in Austin, Texas in 1927. Abandoned by his birth mother, he was taken in by a woman named Ella Lane who was walking home that evening and heard what she thought was a cat. When she saw the baby boy, she took him home and adopted him. 

Growing up, he played football with the  kids in his neighborhood. In 1944, he was an integral part of Anderson High School winning the Texas State Championship.  Anderson High School went to the playoffs again in 1945, thanks in part to Lane.  

After graduating, he moved to Nebraska, where he reconnected  with his birth mother. He spent one year attending Scottsbluff Junior College before enlisting in the US  Army. He served four years and rose through the ranks to Lieutenant Colonel. Dick continued to lay football.  While based in Fort Ord, located in Monterey Bay, California, he garnered Second-team All-Army in 1949 and First-team All-Army in 1951. And, during the 1951 season, he caught 18 touchdown passes for Fort Ord. 

Photograph of Dick "Night-Train" Lane

After leaving the military, he went to Los Angeles to work at an aircraft plant, but finding he didn’t see a future in the job, he showed up one day at the LA Rams training camp and asked to try out for the team. 

He initially tried out for the position of wide receiver, as that’s the position he had played in the Army, but the Rams switched him to defensive back due to his size and speed. 

It is commonly circulated that he acquired the nickname "Night Train" from a hit record by Jimmy Forrest (A #1 R&B hit for 7 weeks in 1952) often played by teammate Tom Fears when they’d meet to go over plays, pass patterns, and defensive moves. However, it is also said that he acquired the name because of his fear of flying and the many night-trains he would take to get to games. 

In his rookie season he set an NFL single season record for interceptions with 14, which stands to this day even though the length of the season at the time was only 12 games. 

He was traded to the Chicago Cardinals in 1954 and to the Detroit Lions in 1960. He played six seasons in Detroit (1960–65) and recorded 21 interceptions for 272 yards plus one touchdown. He was All-NFL four times (1960 - 1963) and was named to the Pro Bowl three times (1961 - 1963).

Between 1954 and 1963 Lane made the All-Pro team six times and was also selected to seven Pro Bowls. He recorded three interceptions in all but four of his 14 NFL seasons.

His go to move was to tackle opponents around their head and neck in order to keep them from making any more progress across the field since, if he had tackled them at the legs, they could fall forward and make a first down. After the tackle was made  illegal in the NFL, it is sometimes referred to as a Night Train Necktie

Dick "Night Train" Lane mid-tackle using the "Night-Train Necktie"

In 1969, Lane was named the best cornerback of the first fifty years of the league.  He was elected to the NFL Hall of Fame in 1974. Lane’s career stats are impressive: 68 interceptions, 1,207 interception return yards, five touchdowns, 11 fumble recoveries, 57 fumble return yards, one touchdown, eight receptions, 253 receiving yards, one touchdown reception, and four punt returns for 14 yards.

In 1999, The Sporting News ranked Lane as number 19 on their  list of the 100 Greatest Football Players of all time.

In 1975 he was hired as manager of Detroit’s Police Athletic League and remained until 1992 when he retired to his hometown of Austin, Texas.  

Lane died of a heart attack on January 29, 2002  and is buried in Evergreen Cemetery in Austin.

Headstone Richard "Night Train" Lane April 16 1928 - Jan 29 2002  Pro Football Hall of Fame 1974, Pro Bowl 7 Times, Los Angeles Rams 1952 - 1953, Chicago Cardinals 1954 - 1959, Detroit Lions 1960 - 1965, Int Record (14) 1952

Jun 16, 2021 - 02:07 pm CDT

Reuben Shannon Lovinggood, African-American educator, newspaper editor, speaker, and the first president of Samuel Huston College when the school officially opened, was born in 1864, in Walhalla, Oconee County, South Carolina. On his death certificate, his father’s name is listed simply as Lovinggood, while his mother’s name is listed as Leah Lay. A self-described “Mountain Black,” Lovinggood was born into poverty with few prospects for an education. He learned the alphabet in Sunday school at age twelve. In 1881, he enrolled at Clark University (now Clark Atlanta University) in Atlanta, Georgia, and in 1890, he graduated with a B. A. degree in Classics.

Portrait of Dr. Lovinggood

Photo courtesy of Courtesy of Huston-Tillotson University Archives

For a short time afterwards, Lovinggood was co-owner and editor of the Atlanta Times, a weekly newspaper. However, in December of 1891, he sold his share of the paper and moved to Birmingham, Alabama, where he accepted a principal’s position at Cameron Public School, an elementary school. In 1894, he married Lillie G. England of Birmingham, and in 1895, they moved to Marshall, Texas, where Lovinggood became chair of the Greek and Latin department at Wiley College. Their marriage was short-lived, however, and Lillie died in 1896, nineteen days after giving birth to their son, Reuben Penman Lovinggood. Despite this loss, Lovinggood remained at the college. He married Mattie Alice Townsend, also of Birmingham, on April 25, 1900. They had six children—Beulah, Burrows, Roosevelt, Madeline Alice, Clarissa, and Jessalyn.

Pictured: President Lovinggood and Family  Back row: Beulah; middle row: Burrows, Roosevelt; Front row: Madeline Alice, Jessalyn, Mattie, Reuben Shannon, Clarissa. Not pictured is Reuben Penman Lovinggood, R. S. Lovinggood’s first son, whose mother, Lilian England, died 19 days after his birth.

Pictured: President Lovinggood and Family

Back row: Beulah; middle row: Burrows, Roosevelt; Front row: Madeline Alice, Jessalyn, Mattie, Reuben Shannon, Clarissa. Not pictured is Reuben Penman Lovinggood, R. S. Lovinggood’s first son, whose mother, Lilian England, died 19 days after his birth. Courtesy of Huston-Tillotson University Archives

During this time and throughout his life, Lovinggood was a prominent leader in the (Colored) Methodist Episcopal Church. He was a member of that church’s general committee, a frequent representative of Texas to the church’s general conference, a representative of the Seventh Episcopal District on the church’s board of foreign missions, and a leader in the Texas Epworth League, an educational association for young Methodists. For many years he also served the church as secretary of the Freedman’s Aid Society and Southern Education Society.

In 1900, Lovinggood was elected by the aforementioned society to be the first president of Samuel Huston College, a Methodist Episcopal-affiliated school built for Blacks in Austin, Texas, that later merged with Tillotson College in 1952. When the college opened in the Fall of 1900, there was just one unfinished building with only four usable rooms, two teachers, no furniture, no kitchen or dishes, and the basement was being used to house livestock. However, eighty-three students were present on the first day of class, and half of them expected to board. When he later described those first days, Lovinggood recalled, “The students sat on trunks while I gave them a lecture and went out to beg chairs, dishes, beds, etc. We called upon the neighbors, both White and Black; all responded liberally. Our first meal was a jug of molasses and fourteen loaves of bread." 

Over the next sixteen years, Lovinggood and his wife, Mattie, worked to improve the school. In 1904, they opened the Eliza Dee Industrial Home for Girls on the campus; in 1910, Lovinggood organized a Classics department at Samuel Huston College. In February 1911, The Christian Educator magazine published an article celebrating the college’s tenth anniversary. There was substantial progress to report, as the college had grown to include five buildings, nineteen faculty members, and more than 500 students. The institution could also boast seventy-one graduates. Lovinggood was managing a campus with a property worth $87,000. The Christian Educator reported that “Samuel Huston College has grown in ten years to [be] one of the largest and best schools of our Church for colored youth in the South.” When Lovinggood saw the need to construct a new industrial building, he took it upon himself to raise $6,000 of the remaining $10,000 needed. Thanks to their early efforts, by 1927 Samuel Huston College made enough progress to be considered a Class A senior college.

Lovinggood served as president of the Colored Teachers State Association of Texas from 1905 to 1906, and he worked to institute uniform requirements for diplomas and degrees in Texas’s Black schools. On an interesting aside, while teaching at Huston College, Mrs. Lovinggood also attended classes at the University of Texas at Austin’s School of Library Science. Although Black students were not allowed to attend since it was prior to integration, she was so fair-skinned that her racial background was not known to the administration.

Reuben Shannon Lovinggood enjoyed a distinguished career at Samuel Huston College and earned the respect of the students and staff as well as the confidence of Austin’s city officials. Unfortunately, he suffered from chronically poor health, and on December 17, 1916, Lovinggood died due to chronic nephritis. His funeral in Austin was well-attended. The Austin city council was present, and the mayor made a speech. Lovinggood was buried in Oakwood Cemetery. He was remembered by many for his fair criticisms of Jim Crow and a teaching philosophy that inspired Samuel Huston College’s school motto, “Strive always to treat others better than they treat you.”

 

Much thanks to Greg Farrar for this biography

Oct 12, 2021 - 08:15 am CDT

Evelyn Maurine Carrington was born in Austin in 1898.

After attending Austin High School she earned three degrees from the University of Texas. A B.A. in 1919, an M.A. in 1920 and a Ph.D. in 1930, with additional work at the Institute for Juvenile Research, the Michael Reese Hospital in Chicago, and at Columbia University. 

Between 1930 and 1941 she taught educational psychology at Sam Houston State Teachers College (now Sam Houston State University) and after that, between 1941 and 1952 she was on the faculty at Texas State College for Women (now Texas Woman's University). 

She also served for a time as the administrative director for the Children's Development Center in Dallas, as well as as psychologist and director of instruction at the Shady Brook schools. She then became staff psychologist at the Children's Medical Center in Dallas in 1955 and during her time there, she also lectured at Baylor University College of Dentistry.

She remained with the Children’s Medical Center center until 1973 and maintained a private practice in child psychology in Dallas during her tenure there.  

Throughout her career, she focused on children's learning, especially as related to the process of learning to read, the problems associated with aging, and mental health -even sponsoring the Mental Health Club while studying for her PhD. 

Her reputation extended beyond the world of academia. She was a delegate to two White House conferences and a member of the Governor's Commission on aging and needs of the elderly. 

When Ima Hogg and her family began the work to create the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health, Dr. Carrington was asked to join the committee that drafted the plans for the establishment of the Foundation. While working as the secretary of State Mental Hygiene she worked closely with Ima Hogg to draft the plans for the Foundation. 

She also served for a time as vice president of the Texas Society for Mental Health and president of the International Council of Women Psychologists. 

She was a fellow of the Texas Psychological Association and the American Psychological Association and authored several publications on the topic of mental health and psychology: Mental Health for Older People and Psychologist Looks at the Adolescent Girl in 1946, The Exceptional Child: His Nature and His Needs in 1951, and was the editor of Women in Early Texas in 1975. 

She died in Austin in October of 1985, and is buried in Oakwood Cemetery.

Headstone Dr. Evelyn M Carrington Beloved Daughter of William Leonidas Carrington and Bertha Bartlett Gray Aug 30 1898 - Oct 4 1985

 

 

Historical Biographies of Austin Cemeteries
Sep 03, 2021 - 01:44 pm CDT

Curtis Kent Bishop was born in Bolivar, Tennessee in 1912 and moved to Texas with his family while still a child.  

He attended Big Spring High School while working part time at the Austin American-Statesman, and after graduating in 1934 he went to the University of Texas where worked on the student magazine the Ranger as the editor and the student newspaper, the Daily Texan as a sports reporter. 

After earning his bachelors degree, he went to work as a reporter for the Austin Tribune and made his job at the Austin American-Statesman a permanent position where he wrote a column called "This Day in Texas" which was syndicated throughout the state. 

During World War II Bishop served with the Foreign Broadcast Intelligence Service in Latin America and in the Pacific Theater. 

When he came back to Texas he continued his writing career and became known for his books rather than his newspaper reporting. 

He wrote about sports and life in the American West. Several of his westerns were even made into motion pictures. 

In total he wrote more than fifty books, though, some of them were published under a pen name. As well as several hundred magazine articles for youth readers, like Half-Time Hero (1956), and Dribble Up (1956), The First Texas Ranger: Jack Hays (1959), and Lots of Land (1949) which was written with James Bascom Giles. 

Book: Lots of Land, Written by Curtis Bishop from material compiled by Bascom Giles, Commissioner of General Land Office of Texas

Photo courtesy of the Austin History Center

Because of the work he did while writing Lots of Land  with Bascom Giles, the General Land Office of Texas hired Bishop to go through their archives. They were looking for help in preparing their case for the state of Texas during the Tidelands controversy 

- a legal dispute between the United States and Texas involved the title to 2,440,650 acres of submerged land in the Gulf of Mexico between low tide and the state's Gulfward boundary three leagues (10.35 miles) from shore

Bishop continued working for the Land Office after the dispute and at the time of his death in March of 1967, he was administrative assistant in the public relations department. 

Bishop was 55 years old when he died of a heart attack is buried in Austin Memorial Park.

Headstone of Curtis K. Bishop, Nov 10, 1912 - Mar 17, 1967

 

Historical Biographies of Austin Cemeteries
Aug 25, 2021 - 02:59 pm CDT

John Coleman Horton was born in 1905 in the city of Monticello, Florida and moved to Wyoming when he was still in school. While attending high school he joined the Wyoming National Guard as part of Troop “E”, 155th Cavalry. 

He graduated with a bachelor of science degree from the U.S. Military Academy in New York in 1929 and was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Field Artillery. 

Photograph of General John Horton

From there, his military career took him all over the United States and the world. He entered flying training at March Field in California and graduated from Advanced Flying Training at Kelly Field in Texas where he stayed on as a flying instructor until 1931. 

At this point he was transferred to Hawaii where he served as tactical pilot, in addition to being squadron adjutant, mass officer, and supply officer. He also assisted Lieutenant William Cocke in the construction of a sailplane - an aircraft with a wingspan of 60 feet that established a new world record for sustained soaring flight by remaining aloft for more than 21 hours in December, 1931.

He returned to Randolph Field for four years before being transferred to San Diego, California, in 1939 for duty as an Air Corps supervisor at the Ryan School of Aeronautics and commanding officer of the Air Corps Training Detachment at Lindberg Field.

Ordered to staff duty with the newly organized headquarters of the West Coast Air Corps Training Center at Moffett Field, California, in February 1941, he remained with the center when it moved to Santa Ana, California. And as assistant for operations, he was involved in the selection of sites and establishment of new flying schools from New Mexico to California.

Transferred to Roswell, New Mexico a year later, he became director of training for the Advanced Pilot Training and Bombardier Training School, and almost immediately became commander of Roswell Army Airfield and commandant of the school.

In 1945 General Horton entered the Army-Navy Staff College, Randolph Field, Texas and when he completed his course, he was transferred to the U.S. Air Forces, Europe, with headquarters at Wiesbaden, Germany where he served as director of military personnel, deputy for personnel, and assistant chief of staff for personnel.

He moved to London, England in 1948 and was attached to the American Embassy while he attended the Imperial Defense College. After which he returned to the US and was assigned to the Air University at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama until he joined the Air Defense Command headquarters, Colorado Springs, Colorado, as deputy chief of staff for personnel in 1952.

Four years later he transferred to Air Force headquarters, Washington, D.C., where he assumed duties as a member of the Personnel Council, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force.

After retiring from the military, he and his family relocated to Austin where his wife’s family home was. He studied business management at The University of Texas and became director of the Austin National Bank. He also spent time in community service, including the Austin Community Foundation.

Headstone Front: Horton   John Coleman, Jr. Sept 13, 1905 - Sept 29, 2001   Virginia Wilmot Roberdeau Feb 23, 1914 - July 15, 1988

He died in 2001 at the age of 96 and is buried in the Oakwood Cemetery Annex here in Austin. 

His decorations include the Legion of Merit for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services to the Government of the United States as Assistant Chief of Staff for operations at Headquarters Army Air Force Western Flying and Training Command, from 1944 to 1945, and the Cloud Banner Award. 

Back of Headstone Military Marker: John Coleman Horton Brig Gen US Air Force. World War II, Korea   Sep 13, 1905 - Sep 29, 2001

Historical Biographies of Austin Cemeteries
Aug 23, 2021 - 03:15 pm CDT

Zachary Thomson Scott was born in December 1880, in Fort Worth, Texas and grew up on his family’s ranch in Bosque County, Texas. He attended a private school near Fredericksburg, Virginia and was taught by his aunts, returning to Texas to attend the University of Texas medical school in Galveston. 

As he was living in Galveston at the time of the 1900 hurricane, he was actively involved in rescuing the many patients that were trapped by the floods.

After graduating in 1903 he began his practice in Clifton, Bosque County, but moved to Austin in 1909. He established the Austin Sanitarium with Thomas J. Bennett where he developed a life-long professional interest in Texas Tuberculosis Association and the treatment of TB, even  instituting the sale of tuberculosis seals in Texas - Beginning in 1907 seals were introduced as a way to help physicians fund tuberculosis hospitals or  sanitoriums. Still a fundraiser for the American Lung Association today the funding the seals provide has been expanded to include other respiratory diseases like lung cancer, asthma, COVID-19, and lung damage due to air pollution and second-hand smoke. 

During World War I, he served as a lieutenant commander in the navy and organized a medical, which was moved to the naval hospital in Gulfport, Mississippi, under his command. 

Portrait of Dr. Zachary Scott

Portrait of Dr. Scott courtesy of the Austin History Center

After the war he returned to Austin and served on the Austin Selective Service Board for many years. And in 1923 he established the Scott-Gregg Clinic with Frank C. Gregg and specialized in the treatment of tuberculosis. 

When the clinic closed in 1930 due to the Great Depression, Scott became Chief of Staff at Brackenridge Hospital where he served until he retired in 1947. 

When he retired he returned to his family ranch near Buda and began to breed cattle, crossing Santa Gertrude with Hereford cattle to form a new breed he called San Gerfords. 

He was also a ruling elder and trustee of University Presbyterian Church, and a member of the board of directors of the Capital National Bank of Austin from its creation in 1934 until his death. And he was active in the American Medical Association and the Texas Tuberculosis Association throughout his time in Austin. 

Dr. Zachary Thompson Scott died in Austin on January 19, 1964, and is buried in Austin Memorial Park.

Headstone Zachary Thompson Scott, M.D. Dec 25, 1880 - Jan 19, 1964   As a well spent day brings happy sleep, so life well used brings happy death, Leonardo Da Vinci

 

Historical Biographies of Austin Cemeteries
Aug 20, 2021 - 01:46 pm CDT

Herschel Thurman Manuel was born near Freetown, Indiana, on December 24, 1887. And after graduating from Brownstown High School in 1905 he earned his bachelor’s degree in Mathematics from DePauw University. Following this he earned his Masters in 1914 from the University of Chicago, and his Ph.D. from the University of Illinois in 1917. 

As 1917 was also the year the United States entered WWI, known as “The Great War” at the time, Manuel enlisted in the US Army.  When he was discharged in 1925, he began teaching at the University of Texas here in Austin.

Manuel cared deeply about bilingual education and received a grant that would allow him to conduct research specifically on the education of Spanish-speaking children. This resulted in a book, The Education of Mexican and Spanish-speaking Children in Texas in 1930. His follow-up to this came in 1965 with, Spanish-speaking Children of the Southwest: Their education and the Public Welfare

During this time he also began work with the League of United Latin American Citizens, a Texas organization that was founded to counter political disfranchisement, racial segregation, and discrimination of Latin Americans. (Still active today, the LULAC seeks to support the growth of the Mexican-American middle class)  

Manuel would often address LULAC meetings and contribute to its national publication, the LULAC News. He would argue that education was a birthright and that it was the responsibility of the state to provide it. 

Not at all neglecting his teaching responsibilities, Manuel was named supervisor of the University of Texas freshman testing program in 1935. He established the Testing and Guidance Bureau (known today as the Measurement and Evaluation Center) and created a series of bilingual parallel achievement tests in English and in Spanish called the Inter-American tests that were later published by the Educational Testing Service.

Manuel was also made a fellow of  Evaluation and Measurement of the American Psychological Association as well as a Diplomat in Counseling of the American Board of Examiners in Professional Psychology. 

Herschel retired from teaching in 1962, but was named Professor Emeritus of Educational Psychology and continued to work as president of Guidance Testing Associates in Austin until he also retired from this in 1975. 

Herschel Thurman Manuel died in March of 1976 and was buried in Austin Memorial Park.

Headstone Manuel, Herschel Thurman Dec. 24 1887 - Mar. 21 1976; Dorothy Broad Nov. 1 1898 - Dec. 6 1967

Historical Biographies of Austin Cemeteries
Aug 17, 2021 - 04:29 pm CDT

Known locally as the founder of the Austin Ballet Theater, Stanley Hall was born in Birmingham England in 1917. 

He began training in ballet at the age of twelve when a track and field coach suggested it as support training for sprinting, and with family in the theater it was a natural fit. 

By sixteen he had become an apprentice with the Vic-Wells Ballet after training for years with the Royal Ballet of London, working under Dame Ninette de Valois and Sir Frederick Ashton. 

During World War II Hall served in the Royal Navy on the H.M.S. London as a signalman. Over the course of the war his ship spent 14 months in the North Atlantic escorting Russian convoys and he later joined the Indian Ocean Fleet. While with them he earned a certificate for crossing the equator. He prized this certificate and kept it on display in his home. 

After his service, Hall rejoined his old ballet company, but went on to dance with Britain’s Metropolitan Ballet Company and joined the traveling dance troupe Les Ballets de Paris in London, which took him all over the world. 

He was touring with Roland Petit’s 1949 Carmen when the presenters backed out of the American tour, stranding them in Seattle, Washington. This proved to be a turning point for him as it turned out Petit had a friend in Hollywood, Howard Hughes, who brought the entire company down to film Carmen at the RKO studios in Southern California. Even though the production closed down before it was finished, Hall caught another break when Petit was hired to choreograph Hans Christian Anderson. This production is what launched his twelve year career in Hollywood, Broadway, television specials, and nightclub performances where he was able to work with celebrities like Agnes de Mille, Gene Kelly, Hanya Holm, Mary Martin, Bob Hope, Jane Russell, Cyd Charisse, Abbott and Costello, and so many more. 

By 1966 he was ready to retire from performing and was offered the position of artistic director with the Austin Civic Ballet. He moved to Austin in 1968, also taking a  position with the University of Texas as a ballet teacher. 

He served as artistic director of Austin Civic Ballet until 1972 but split with the board of directors. The conflict publicly focused on Hall’s choice to substitute a production of  Cinderella for the regular production of The Nutcracker with board members contending that The Nutcracker was an American (and Austin) Christmas tradition that provided a major source of annual ticket sales and should be the de facto performance for December. Hall, however, argued that he had chosen Cinderella for performance quality reasons, though there were more than a few rumors circulating that the true reason for his being removed was due to his homosexuality. 

Several other board members, a handful of instructors, and most  of the dancers left along with him.

Hall and the board members, dancers, and instructors who left ACB with him formed the Austin Ballet Theatre in February 1972. The Theatre became known for performing at the Armadillo World Headquarters, a large bar and music hall in South Austin that played rock and country music on most other nights. Despite this, by the next year the monthly shows brought in up to 700 people with each performance. 

Hall left the Theatre in 1986 after a disagreement with the board on financial decisions, and the Theatre closed soon after when they could no longer compete with the rival Ballet Austin (previously ACB).

Over three decades, he gained great renown for the training of a generation of famous dancers and was described as enigmatic, paternal, but also “an isolated man with a veneer of camp humor, a curious blend of movieland theatricality and genteel restraint.” His students described him as a friend and teacher, stating that he taught them not just ballet, but also social skills and even cooking.

Stanley Hall died on June 21, 1994, from a stroke after a fall at the age of 77. He is buried in Austin Memorial Park Cemetery.

And in 2013 he was inducted into the Austin Arts Hall of Fame.

Stanley Hall June 16, 1917 - June 21, 1994   Our teacher, choreographer, mentor, and friend

Historical Biographies of Austin Cemeteries
Aug 17, 2021 - 04:24 pm CDT

Noble Doss is best known for his “impossible catch” in 1940 when Texas took the National Championship title from Texas A&M, but this was only one moment in a life full of football and service to his country. 

He was born in Temple, Texas in 1920 and attended Temple High School before graduating from the University of Texas where he made a name for himself as an accomplished member of the Texas Longhorns football team, making that “impossible catch” that gave Texas the only points on the board for the 7-0 win that knocked the Aggies out of the Rose Bowl and is still one of the most famous images in school history. He is also the only player in UT history to lead the team in interceptions for three straight years.  

During World War II he enlisted and served as a Lieutenant with the US Navy in the Pacific Theater. 

Upon the completion of his service, he went straight back to the football field, but this time at the professional level. 

Chosen by the Philadelphia in the 11th round of the 1942 NFL Draft he played for the Eagles for two NFL championship games and earned a World Championship ring with their victory in 1948 against the Chicago Cardinals. When with the New York Yankees (AAFC) in 1949, he played alongside such greats as Tom Landry and Arnie Weinmeister. 

In an interview with ABC before he died he talks about his time playing football, his greatest catch, and what he sees as his greatest failure in the game. 

Longhorn Legend Noble Doss - YouTube

After he completed his time in the NFL he and wife returned to Austin where he got involved in Longhorn football again. He served for a time as the letterman representative to the Athletics Council, and was a charter member of the board of directors of the Greater Austin Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame. All while creating a successful life insurance business that he ran until he retired in 2001.

Noble was inducted into the Longhorn Hall of Honor in 1980 and, in 1995, into the Texas High School Football Hall of Fame. 

Noble Doss died on February 15, 2009 at the age of 88 in Austin, Texas and he is buried in Austin Memorial Park.

Headstone Doss Noble Webster, May 22,1920 - Feb 15, 2009. Dorothy Burwitz July 13,1919 - Jan 26,2006. June 4, 1941

 

Historical Biographies of Austin Cemeteries
Aug 17, 2021 - 03:50 pm CDT

Richard “Night Train” Lane was born in Austin, Texas in 1927. Abandoned by his birth mother, he was taken in by a woman named Ella Lane who was walking home that evening and heard what she thought was a cat. When she saw the baby boy, she took him home and adopted him. 

Growing up, he played football with the  kids in his neighborhood. In 1944, he was an integral part of Anderson High School winning the Texas State Championship.  Anderson High School went to the playoffs again in 1945, thanks in part to Lane.  

After graduating, he moved to Nebraska, where he reconnected  with his birth mother. He spent one year attending Scottsbluff Junior College before enlisting in the US  Army. He served four years and rose through the ranks to Lieutenant Colonel. Dick continued to lay football.  While based in Fort Ord, located in Monterey Bay, California, he garnered Second-team All-Army in 1949 and First-team All-Army in 1951. And, during the 1951 season, he caught 18 touchdown passes for Fort Ord. 

Photograph of Dick "Night-Train" Lane

After leaving the military, he went to Los Angeles to work at an aircraft plant, but finding he didn’t see a future in the job, he showed up one day at the LA Rams training camp and asked to try out for the team. 

He initially tried out for the position of wide receiver, as that’s the position he had played in the Army, but the Rams switched him to defensive back due to his size and speed. 

It is commonly circulated that he acquired the nickname "Night Train" from a hit record by Jimmy Forrest (A #1 R&B hit for 7 weeks in 1952) often played by teammate Tom Fears when they’d meet to go over plays, pass patterns, and defensive moves. However, it is also said that he acquired the name because of his fear of flying and the many night-trains he would take to get to games. 

In his rookie season he set an NFL single season record for interceptions with 14, which stands to this day even though the length of the season at the time was only 12 games. 

He was traded to the Chicago Cardinals in 1954 and to the Detroit Lions in 1960. He played six seasons in Detroit (1960–65) and recorded 21 interceptions for 272 yards plus one touchdown. He was All-NFL four times (1960 - 1963) and was named to the Pro Bowl three times (1961 - 1963).

Between 1954 and 1963 Lane made the All-Pro team six times and was also selected to seven Pro Bowls. He recorded three interceptions in all but four of his 14 NFL seasons.

His go to move was to tackle opponents around their head and neck in order to keep them from making any more progress across the field since, if he had tackled them at the legs, they could fall forward and make a first down. After the tackle was made  illegal in the NFL, it is sometimes referred to as a Night Train Necktie

Dick "Night Train" Lane mid-tackle using the "Night-Train Necktie"

In 1969, Lane was named the best cornerback of the first fifty years of the league.  He was elected to the NFL Hall of Fame in 1974. Lane’s career stats are impressive: 68 interceptions, 1,207 interception return yards, five touchdowns, 11 fumble recoveries, 57 fumble return yards, one touchdown, eight receptions, 253 receiving yards, one touchdown reception, and four punt returns for 14 yards.

In 1999, The Sporting News ranked Lane as number 19 on their  list of the 100 Greatest Football Players of all time.

In 1975 he was hired as manager of Detroit’s Police Athletic League and remained until 1992 when he retired to his hometown of Austin, Texas.  

Lane died of a heart attack on January 29, 2002  and is buried in Evergreen Cemetery in Austin.

Headstone Richard "Night Train" Lane April 16 1928 - Jan 29 2002  Pro Football Hall of Fame 1974, Pro Bowl 7 Times, Los Angeles Rams 1952 - 1953, Chicago Cardinals 1954 - 1959, Detroit Lions 1960 - 1965, Int Record (14) 1952

Historical Biographies of Austin Cemeteries
Jun 16, 2021 - 02:07 pm CDT

Reuben Shannon Lovinggood, African-American educator, newspaper editor, speaker, and the first president of Samuel Huston College when the school officially opened, was born in 1864, in Walhalla, Oconee County, South Carolina. On his death certificate, his father’s name is listed simply as Lovinggood, while his mother’s name is listed as Leah Lay. A self-described “Mountain Black,” Lovinggood was born into poverty with few prospects for an education. He learned the alphabet in Sunday school at age twelve. In 1881, he enrolled at Clark University (now Clark Atlanta University) in Atlanta, Georgia, and in 1890, he graduated with a B. A. degree in Classics.

Portrait of Dr. Lovinggood

Photo courtesy of Courtesy of Huston-Tillotson University Archives

For a short time afterwards, Lovinggood was co-owner and editor of the Atlanta Times, a weekly newspaper. However, in December of 1891, he sold his share of the paper and moved to Birmingham, Alabama, where he accepted a principal’s position at Cameron Public School, an elementary school. In 1894, he married Lillie G. England of Birmingham, and in 1895, they moved to Marshall, Texas, where Lovinggood became chair of the Greek and Latin department at Wiley College. Their marriage was short-lived, however, and Lillie died in 1896, nineteen days after giving birth to their son, Reuben Penman Lovinggood. Despite this loss, Lovinggood remained at the college. He married Mattie Alice Townsend, also of Birmingham, on April 25, 1900. They had six children—Beulah, Burrows, Roosevelt, Madeline Alice, Clarissa, and Jessalyn.

Pictured: President Lovinggood and Family  Back row: Beulah; middle row: Burrows, Roosevelt; Front row: Madeline Alice, Jessalyn, Mattie, Reuben Shannon, Clarissa. Not pictured is Reuben Penman Lovinggood, R. S. Lovinggood’s first son, whose mother, Lilian England, died 19 days after his birth.

Pictured: President Lovinggood and Family

Back row: Beulah; middle row: Burrows, Roosevelt; Front row: Madeline Alice, Jessalyn, Mattie, Reuben Shannon, Clarissa. Not pictured is Reuben Penman Lovinggood, R. S. Lovinggood’s first son, whose mother, Lilian England, died 19 days after his birth. Courtesy of Huston-Tillotson University Archives

During this time and throughout his life, Lovinggood was a prominent leader in the (Colored) Methodist Episcopal Church. He was a member of that church’s general committee, a frequent representative of Texas to the church’s general conference, a representative of the Seventh Episcopal District on the church’s board of foreign missions, and a leader in the Texas Epworth League, an educational association for young Methodists. For many years he also served the church as secretary of the Freedman’s Aid Society and Southern Education Society.

In 1900, Lovinggood was elected by the aforementioned society to be the first president of Samuel Huston College, a Methodist Episcopal-affiliated school built for Blacks in Austin, Texas, that later merged with Tillotson College in 1952. When the college opened in the Fall of 1900, there was just one unfinished building with only four usable rooms, two teachers, no furniture, no kitchen or dishes, and the basement was being used to house livestock. However, eighty-three students were present on the first day of class, and half of them expected to board. When he later described those first days, Lovinggood recalled, “The students sat on trunks while I gave them a lecture and went out to beg chairs, dishes, beds, etc. We called upon the neighbors, both White and Black; all responded liberally. Our first meal was a jug of molasses and fourteen loaves of bread." 

Over the next sixteen years, Lovinggood and his wife, Mattie, worked to improve the school. In 1904, they opened the Eliza Dee Industrial Home for Girls on the campus; in 1910, Lovinggood organized a Classics department at Samuel Huston College. In February 1911, The Christian Educator magazine published an article celebrating the college’s tenth anniversary. There was substantial progress to report, as the college had grown to include five buildings, nineteen faculty members, and more than 500 students. The institution could also boast seventy-one graduates. Lovinggood was managing a campus with a property worth $87,000. The Christian Educator reported that “Samuel Huston College has grown in ten years to [be] one of the largest and best schools of our Church for colored youth in the South.” When Lovinggood saw the need to construct a new industrial building, he took it upon himself to raise $6,000 of the remaining $10,000 needed. Thanks to their early efforts, by 1927 Samuel Huston College made enough progress to be considered a Class A senior college.

Lovinggood served as president of the Colored Teachers State Association of Texas from 1905 to 1906, and he worked to institute uniform requirements for diplomas and degrees in Texas’s Black schools. On an interesting aside, while teaching at Huston College, Mrs. Lovinggood also attended classes at the University of Texas at Austin’s School of Library Science. Although Black students were not allowed to attend since it was prior to integration, she was so fair-skinned that her racial background was not known to the administration.

Reuben Shannon Lovinggood enjoyed a distinguished career at Samuel Huston College and earned the respect of the students and staff as well as the confidence of Austin’s city officials. Unfortunately, he suffered from chronically poor health, and on December 17, 1916, Lovinggood died due to chronic nephritis. His funeral in Austin was well-attended. The Austin city council was present, and the mayor made a speech. Lovinggood was buried in Oakwood Cemetery. He was remembered by many for his fair criticisms of Jim Crow and a teaching philosophy that inspired Samuel Huston College’s school motto, “Strive always to treat others better than they treat you.”

 

Much thanks to Greg Farrar for this biography

Historical Biographies of Austin Cemeteries