The Houstons - My Grandmother Maxwell's Family - Page 2


Sowing
Sowing Oats - 1910
Georgina Duncan's information indicates that this photo was taken in 1910 as the men prepared the ground for sowing oats. I guess oats are sowed in very early spring; the trees are certainly bare. I think I can identify some of the people based on apparent ages and from appearance. John Hawk Houston, Jr. (John Hawk) is in the light colored hat in the center of the photo. I can tell by his face and his stance. He was 26 in early 1910. His father, Hawk Houston, was 51. My grandmother, John Hawks little sister, was 10 years old and her sister, Grace, was 11. I think Grandma is in the black dress. The little girls could be Bertie and Edna, John Hawk's daughters, who were five and four. A little boy of three or four is sitting on the breaking plow. The littliest girl is holding a doll.

Gasoline powered farm equipment was not in widespread use, certainly not among the poor folk of Arkansas. It's interesting to note that the breaking plow is pulled by a team of three horses in parallel.


John Hawk Houston
John Hawk Houston, Sr.
Cornelia Josephine Houston
Cornelia Josephine Conley Houston
1901 - With the beginning of the new century the story will change to Hawk and Josie Houston, my Grandmother Maxwell's parents. Hawk was 42 and Josie was 40 in 1901. Their son Elbert had died. Their oldest son, John Hawk, was 18 years old. Their little daughters, Eva, Grace, and Gene, were six, four, and two.

1904 - John Hawk married Ida Belle Massingill in 1904 and they had a daughter, Alberta, on November 11, 1904. She was the first grandchild of Hawk and Josie. When she grew up, she married Jim Brown and they had one son, J. B. J. B. had a physical problem with his neck and speech, but still had to register for the draft in WWII. When he was told that he couldn't have letters for his name, he told them to list his name as "Jimmy Bob" and Grandpa Maxwell used to was tease him about that in later years. "Uncle" Jim Brown was the high school principal at Wonderview when I was in high school. He died of a ruptured spleen the year after I graduated. "Bertie" was Grandma Maxwell's niece and called Grandma "Aunt Gene." However, momma called Bertie "Aunt Bertie."

John Hawk and Ida Belle had another daughter, Williard Edna, December 17,1905 and a son, James Mackey "Mack", January 21, 1908.

John Hawk Houston, Jr.
John Hawk Houston, Jr.
1910 - By the time the farm photo above was made in 1910 the "Hawk" Houston family consisted of Hawk (50), Cornnelia (49), Eva (14), Grace (13), Gene (10), and John Hawk (26) and his family; Ida Belle (33), Alberta (5), Edna (4) and "Mack" (2). In addition to the immediate family, Hawk and Josie had several brothers and sisters and nieces and nephews.

1911 - John Hawk and Ida Belle had another daughter on December 28, 1911. She was Johnie Pauline who married Doyle Wells and had Doylene and Doyle, Jr.

1916 - The final child of John Hawk and Ida Belle was John Hawk "J.H." Houston, who was born February 16, 1916. J.H. was the fifth grandchild of Hawk and Josie. All five were children of John Hawk and Ida Belle.

Grace Houston with friend Eugenia Houston with friend
Grace Houston with friend.
Grace is in white and is about 19 years old.
Euginia Houston with friend. Gene is in the checkered top and is about 17.

1917 - Eva Josephine Houston married Hugh Montgomery Cheek and they had Mary Josephine Cheek on May 1, 1918. That was Eva's birthday and she was 23 years old. Mary Jo married Olen Raymond Churchill and they had Betty Jo, Larry Raymond, and John Hugh Churchill. Hugh Cheek had a pharmacy in Hector until he retired.

1918 - Hawk and Josie's youngest daughter, Eugenia Frances Houston, married Luther Alonzo Maxwell on April 21, 1918 when she was just a month short of her nineteenth birthday. Luther was on leave from military duty and since the war was soon over, he returned to Conway County in 1919 and resumed his teaching profession. Their first child was Eva Louise Maxwell, born March 17, 1920. Gene was almost 21 years old when Louise was born. Their next daughter, Kathern Grace, was stillborn or died within a few days of birth.

Maxwell Wedding Party
THE WEDDING PARTY
"This is a fine crowd."
Pearl, Dovie Maxwell, Nettie [Fryer], Mrs. Luther Maxwell, Lieut. Luther Maxwell, Virgie Ruff, Katie Maxwell, Anna, Monroe [Treadwell?]


Grace and GeneMaudie Grace Houston married Walter Duncan later in 1918. They had William Houston Duncan on June 19, 1919; then Walter Conley Duncan, Patricia Grace Duncan, and Roger Griffin Duncan. Grace was 22 when her first child was born. Walter Duncan was a school teacher and a mail carrier from the Springfield Post Office. Springfield had been the county seat of Conway County in the early days. Grace was also taught school when she was young. She was teaching school when the photo of her in the white dress was taken.

1920 - In January 1920, Luther and Eugenia were living in Gregory Township (Old Hickory) in Conway County. He was 27 and she was 20. They were listed as family 25 living with her parents in residence 24. Their first child, my mother Eva Louise Maxwell, was born February 17, 1920, the month after the census. John H. Houston, Sr. was 60 and Cornelia J. was 57. (Hawk and Josie) Luther and Gene had signed up to teach school together when she discovered she was pregnant. Luther had to take another school where he could teach alone.

John H. Houston and Ida Belle lived in residence 22 which they owned. He was 35 and she was 42 years old. Alberta was 15, Willard E. was 13, James M. was 11, Johnnie P. was 8, and John H. Jr. was three years, ten months old. This young fellow was known as "J. H." to distinguish him from his father, John Hawk, and his grandfather, Hawk Houston. His great grandfather was the little orphan boy who took the middle name "Hawkins" in honor of his benefactor, Hawkins Gregory.

Walter and Grace were also living in Gregory Township (Old Hickory) in Conway County. Walter was 28 and Maude was 22. Their son William H. was six months old. They owned residence 183 free of mortgage.

Eva and Hugh Cheek were living in Atkins, Wilson Township, Pope County. Hugh was 30, Eva was 24, and little Mary Jo was one and a half. They owned residence No. 198.

John Hawk's wife, Ida Belle, died April 23, 1920, just three months after the census. She was only 42. Little J.H. was only four years old.

1845 - 1900 A lonely orphan boy arrives in Arkansas; a family is begun.
1901 - 1920 The John Hawk Houston children come of age.
1921 - 1939 "'Til death do us part."


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Posted 6/5/05