HON. J. D. YOCOM, city secretary of Denison, was born in Clay county, Indiana, October 25, 1842, and is a son of Levi and Lucy (Gordon) Yocom. The father was born in Kentucky and died in Indiana in 1873, at the age of sixty-four years. He was serving as sheriff of Montgomery county at the time of his death. His wife, also a native of Kentucky, passed away in that state at the age of seventy years. The father was a farmer and trader and went to Indiana in 1837 but returned to Kentucky in 1847 and his remaining days were passed in Montgomery county, that state.
Hon. J. D. Yocom, whose name introduces this review, pursued his education in the schools of Kentucky and of Indiana, attending schools of Kentucky and of Indiana, attending for a time the Mount Sterling Seminary in the former state and afterward the Indiana College. For several years, from 1865 until 1873, Mr. Yocom engaged in teaching school in Kentucky and Clay county, Indiana. He was serving as deputy sheriff under his father at the time of the latter’s death and was then appointed sheriff and at the next election he was chosen sheriff of Montgomery county, Kentucky, which position he held until the 1st of January, 1877. In July of the same year he came to Texas and for one year was engaged in farming in Collin county. In November, 1878, he came to Denison, where he acted as bookkeeper, and subsequently he embarked in the grocery business on his own account. He carried the business on successfully for several years or until 1898, when on account of ill health he sold out. In 1900 he was elected city secretary and has held the position since. He had previously served in public office, acting in 1885-6, 1888, 1889 and 1891 as councilman from the third ward, filling the office until April, 1892, when he was elected mayor. He was elected again in 1894 and his term expired in 1896. In politics he has always been a Democrat and has been a member of the executive committee for many years. His public duties have always been discharged in a faithful prompt and capable manner, so that over the record of his official career there falls no shadow of wrong or suspicion of evil.
In January, 1873, Mr. Yocom was united in marriage to Miss Emma B. Young, a native of Montgomery county, Kentucky, and they had two children: Dell M., who was born in Kentucky and is now the wife of Vernon Gee, of Oklahoma Territory, by whom she has one child, Dorothy; and J. D. Yocom, Jr., who was born in Texas in 1883 and is a graduate of the A. & M. College. Mrs. Yocom departed this life in April, 1897, passing away at North Adams, Massachusetts, when forty-seven years of age. On the 24th of June, 1902, at Louisville, Kentucky, Mr. Yocom was married to A. A. Tucker, a native of Montgomery, Kentucky. He belongs to the Knights of Pythias fraternity, holding membership in the lodge at Denison. His life has been active, his actions manly and sincere and in business, social and official relations he has always commanded the confidence and esteem of his fellowmen. His efforts in behalf of the city and its progress have been far reaching and beneficial and all who know him respect him for his genuine personal worth.
Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. I, pp. 609-610.