EDES E. GRAVES. A substantial contribution to Clay county’s citizenship has come from the empire of Missouri, a state whose natural resources are nowhere surpassed and a commonwealth rich in the character, intelligence and standing of its citizenship. In their adopted states her emigrants reflect these sterling qualities and take their enterprise and thrift wherever present in our broad land. In this category of representative citizenship of Clay county is enumerated the subject of the following brief sketch, Edes E. Graves.
Spottsylvania county, Virginia, was the American home, originally, of this branch of the Graves family and it was founded there by some remote ancestor who was born a subject of the British crown. Colby Graves, the grandfather of E. E. Graves of this review, was a native Virginian, a farmer and slave owner who had sons: Edwin, Colby and John, who died in their native state, and William F., who passed away in Cooper county, Missouri, during the Civil War.
William F. Graves was born in 1811, grew to manhood among comfortable rural surroundings and married Ellen Thomson, of Louisa county, Virginia, birth. Mrs. Graves’ natal day was January 3, 1824, and her father was William Thomson, also a native of Louisa county, but who died in Cooper county, Missouri, where he settled in 1838. The grandfather of Mrs. Graves was Major Thomson, an Englishman, who had children: Jacob, David, William, Annie, who married a Mr. Goodwin; and Mary, who became the wife of Dr. White. William Thomson married Rebecca N. Ellis, who also died in Cooper county, being the mother of: Frances, who first married Thomas Woolfolk and afterward became the wife of Arthur McCracken; Mary married Spottswood D. Smith; William died in Morgan county, Missouri; James died in Boonville, Missouri; Alfred died in Virginia; Mildred married Alfred Baker and passed away in Virginia; Ellen, Mrs. Graves, Sallie, wife of Horace Ferguson, and Lucy, of Kansas City, Missouri, widow of Nicholas Lewis, passed away November 26, 1905.
William F. Graves emigrated from his native Virginia when a young man and became a settler of Cooper county, Missouri. He married there and pursued the life of a farmer and there all this children were born. He was a southern man in sentiment and, while he was not in the conflict actively, the ultimate success of southern arms would have pleased him most and it was known that he entertained such sentiments. Toward the end of 1864 he met his death at the hands of Federal soldiers at Otterville, Missouri, leaving his widow a young family to support. His children were: Edwin E., of Sulphur Springs, Indian Territory; Emma, wife of C. D. Cheaney, of Gainesville, Texas; Emes, Mrs. J. F. Jackson, of Ryan, Indian Territory, and Edes E., of this review.
Bereft of father infancy and being the youngest of the family, E. E. Graves was destined to become and remain the companion of his widowed mother. His education was limited to the country school and he cannot remember when work was not his chief occupation in life. In February, 1879, the family settled near Sherman, Texas, but three years later removed to Cooke county, where stock-raising and farming became his chief diversion. In 1883 the family home was established in Clay county where his early occupation has been continued. He owns a farm and pasture of six hundred and forty acres, stocked with one hundred and fifty head of cattle. In 1893 he moved to Bellevue, being one of the first residents of the south part of town. As a citizen he has been identified with much of the enterprise requiring public spirit to carry out, in Bellevue, and has contributed of his private means to whatever destined to promote the welfare of his community. He has been prominently identified with Clay county politics, his face being a familiar one in county conventions, and for nine years he was deputy sheriff. He has gone through Odd Fellowship, subordinate, encampment and Rebekah, and has twice been district deputy, and as many times sent as a delegate to the State Grand Lodge, an unusual honor and the only member of his lodge upon whom this distinction has been conferred.
Mr. Graves was born January 20, 1859, and is unmarried. Solicitude for his mother has overshadowed that otherwise attractive feature of a matrimonial alliance and he has been content to remain a bachelor. He is fond of society, is disposed to look upon the bright side of life and enjoys a wide acquaintance and a host of friends.
Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. II, pp. 7-8.