JAMES H. HIGHTOWER, who at one time was commissioner of Tarrant county and is a prominent citizen here, well known and highly respected, resides near Smithfield, where he owns a farm and is engaged in general agricultural pursuits and stock-raising. He is a native of Montgomery county, Illinois, born on the 16th of April, 1847, his parents being Alfred M. and Sarah (Grantham) Hightower, the former a native of Tennessee. When their son was about eight years of age they left Illinois and removed to Laclede county, Missouri, where they remained for a time and then in 1859 came to Texas, settling in Tarrant county near what is now Smithfield. They were early pioneer residents of this section of the state and contributed in substantial measure to the improvement and progress of early times. The father was a Confederate soldier in the Civil war and became a commissioned officer, after which he was always called Captain Hightower. He died in April, 1897, and left him an honorable name because he had led a busy, useful and upright life. Of his children the following survive: James H.; Daniel H., who is living in Tarrant county; Sarah J., the wife of A. B. Clark, of Clarendon, Texas; Mary E., the widow of S. P. Thrower and now living in Shawnee, Indian Territory; and Katie T., the wife of W. C. Meacham, who makes his home near Smithfield, Texas.
J. H. Hightower, whose name introduces this record, was reared to adult age near Smithfield upon the old home farm and early became familiar with all the duties and labors that fall to the lot of the agriculturist. He acquired his education in the public schools of this county and when not busy with his text books worked in the fields. He has throughout his entire life carried on agricultural pursuits, though at different periods he has followed the trade of a carpenter and builder, doing considerable contract work in his locality a number of years ago. At all times he has been industrious and enterprising and his labors constitute the basis of a well merited success.
Mr. Hightower has been married twice. His first wife was Elizabeth Calloway, a native of North Carolina, who with her parents came to Tarrant county in 1859. By her marriage she became the mother of four children: Hugh M., who is living at Smithfield; Halceon C., the wife of Loma B. Brown, whose home is near Smithfield, Texas; Sarah E., the wife of W. H. Cloud, residing near Fort Worth, this state; and Louis A., who is a member of the well known mercantile firm of L. A. Hightower & Brother, conducting a successful business at Smithfield. For his second wife Mr. Hightower chose Miss Cynthia A. Boyd, their wedding occurring June 15, 1884, and she is a native of Tarrant county and a daughter of Dr. Joseph B. Boyd, who at one time was county treasurer of Tarrant county and also tax collector. He was quite prominent in public circles and was a representative citizen but has now passed away.
Some public honors have been conferred upon Mr. Hightower, who has served for two terms, or four years, as county commissioner and received strong endorsement at the primaries in 1904 for county treasurer. He has always been a staunch advocate of Democratic principles and a warm friend of the public schools and of general progress along the lines which contribute to good citizenship and to the substantial improvement. He is a member of Grand Prairie Lodge No. 455, A. F. & A. M., at Smithfield. Viewed from a personal light his life may be said to be a success and all that he possesses has been acquired through his own labors, showing the force and value of industry and enterprise as active factors in winning prosperity.
Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas, Vol. II (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), pp. 211-212.