CHARLES HARDCASTLE. Active for many years with the promotion of the substantial interests of Bridgeport and for two years superintendent of its public schools, Charles Hardcastle has, it will be seen, been one of the figures prominent in the urban and rural development of the Rock Island portion of Wise county. The townsite company of Bridgeport, composed chiefly of Decatur citizens and of officials of the Rock Island Railroad Company, brought Mr. Hardcastle on to the scene upon the laying-out of the town as its agent, and with the sale of its holdings and the handling of its other interests he was occupied until its purposes were accomplished, when personal matters arose to claim his attention and have since occupied his time.
Mr. Hardcastle has been identified with the west for man years and western manners and customs have transformed him into a western man. Indeed his nativity can fairly be said to have been western, for he was born in Macon county, Illinois, at a date when that country was still considered new. His natal day was June 4, 1857, and his origin from among the honorable folk of Decatur, his native town. His father, William Hardcastle, was a merchant in that city and died at forty-six years of age. The latter became identified with Macon county early and was married there to Maria Daniel, of Virginia birth.
As is well known to genealogists, Hardcastle is a prominent English name. Edward Hardcastle was one of three male representatives of the family who emigrated from the mother country and established themselves on American soil, Edward being the grandfather of our subject.
William Hardcastle left issue: Charles, Samuel who died at Marion, Kansas, unmarried; Anna; and Julia, who resides with her brother in Bridgeport and is assistant postmaster of the town.
While Charles Hardcastle’s father was a merchant he also had farming interests and it was in the country that our subject was chiefly brought up. Good schools did the work of his elementary education and he finished his education in college and in the Wherrell Normal at Paola, Kansas. When his education was completed he engaged systematically in teaching school. He followed the profession some years and concluded his school work in the Sunflower state at Lincolnville. His friends secured him the appointment as postmaster of Marion, Kansas, which position he left, after six years of tenure, to engage at Marion when arranged with by the Bridgeport Townsite Company to handle their business in their new and embryonic Texas town.
June 24, 1884, occurred the marriage of Mr. Hardcastle. His wife was Miss Elizabeth Yost, a daughter of Benedict Yost and Elizabeth (Benson) Yost, of Washington, D. C. Mr. Yost was born in Prince George county, Maryland, in 1816, and was one of the pioneer Republicans of his native state. He was appointed to the public service just after the war and served in the custom house in Baltimore many years and was transferred to Washington, D. C., and there concluded his government work at an advanced age, dying in September, 1884. His wife was a lady of English ancestry and was born in Queen Ann[e’s] county, Maryland, and died in Washington, D. C., in September, 1883. They were the parents of the following children: Emma, who married Charles Harvey and died in Maryland in 1904; Robert, who died in Washington, D. C.; Amelia, who resides in the District of Columbia; Dallas, of Marion county, Kansas; Amos, of Washington, D. C., and John of the same city; Frank, who passed away in Portland, Oregon; William, of the District, and Mrs. Hardcastle, whose birth occurred in the District, December 6, 1857.
Mrs. Hardcastle was liberally educated in the public schools of the capital city and in 1883 came west to Marion county, Kansas, where she met her husband, and was married to him the following year. She was occupied with her domestic duties wholly until induced to apply for the post office at Bridgeport, under Mr. McKinley’s administration, was appointed and succeeded Mr. Cleveland’s appointee, Mr. Alexander Lowry, in October, 1897. She was reappointed in 1901 and is nearing the close of the eighth year of her incumbency of the office.
Having been reared in the political atmosphere of Washington and the daughter of a war Republican whose happiness was the most complete only after a sweeping victory of his party, and one who might be called after the political epithet coined by Mr. Cleveland—an offensive partisan, Mrs. Hardcastle drank deep draughts from the Republican fountain and the trend of her though was along political lines. She became known in her neighborhood circle for her radical views and for her outspoken and unswerving Republicanism, and it was but natural for a Republican administration to reward her allegiance to party and compliment her personal fitness by appointment to the position she asked. Her influence and the influence of recent past political history have unified the political sentiment of the Hardcastle household, for whereas the husband was rocked in the cradle of Democracy and espoused its traditions and superstitions he is now marching in the Republican column and singing the music which the harmony of Republican conditions has written on the pages of modern time.
As a result of their marriage six children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Hardcastle, viz.: Carrie, who finished her education in the Marion, Kansas, high school, is the wife of Wooten Winton and resides at Burleson, Texas; Miss Helen is a graduate of the Bridgeport schools, class of 1904, and is a teacher in the public schools; Emma graduated with the class of 1905, Bridgeport; and Dallas, Frank and Robert are pupils in the grades of the Bridgeport schools.
Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. I, pp. 526-528.