James S. Morrow biography

JAMES S. MORROW, cashier of the Citizens National Bank of Stamford, came to Texas in September, 1882, at which time he settled in Mason county but since the spring of 1884 has resided in Jones county. He is a native of Macon county, North Carolina, born on the 28th of January, 1850, his parents being Samuel C. and Martha (Howard) Morrow, both of whom were natives of that state. The father died during the infancy of his son James and the mother passed away after Mr. Morrow had grown to manhood. Later the family removed to Kentucky, settling in Purchase, Graves county, where James S. Morrow was reared upon a farm until about eleven years of age, at which time hostilities were begun between the north and the south. The family then removed to Tennessee in 1861, settling in Weakley county, where Mr. Morrow made his home until coming to Texas. During the progress of the war educational facilities in the south were greatly abridged, as his home was in a section of country that was contested by the opposing forces. However, he was able to go to school to some extent and still further supplemented his education by study after the war closed. He displayed special aptitude in his school work and was therefore son able to put himself in a position where he could study unaided by a teacher. Mathematics was his specialty and by devoting his leisure hours to the mastery of the science he soon became able to cope with the most difficult problems in this branch of learning.

When he was about twenty-nine years of age Mr. Morrow was appointed deputy sheriff in Weakley county and held the office for about twenty-seven months. This gave him a good opportunity to study human nature, which has been a source of help to him in after life. Later he engaged in the stock business, buying and shipping to the markets of St. Louis, Louisville and New Orleans. That pursuit claimed his time and energies until his removal to Texas in 1882.

After settling in Mason county, Texas, Mr. Morrow embarked in the drug, grocery and dry good business in connection with his brother, W. N. Morrow, and followed that pursuit for about eighteen months. He then settled in Jones county in the spring of 1884, establishing his home at Anson, the county seat, which at that time was the only town in the county. There he opened up a furniture business and after carrying it on for a short time he also bought an interest in the drug business in connection with F. T. Knox, under the firm name of F. T. Knox and Company. This business relationship was entered into on the 16th day of August, 1884, and the partnership was maintained until 1893. During that year the great fire of Anson destroyed much property, including the drug store of F. T. Knox & Company. Subsequently the partnership was dissolved and the firm of Morrow and Johnson was established, continuing to do business to the present time, theirs being one of the substantial commercial enterprises of the city. In the latter part of the year 1887 Mr. Morrow established a private bank in the same building with the drug business, under the name of F. T. Knox and Company, bankers. This continued until 1893, since which time it has been J. S. Morrow, Banker, and is today one of the leading features of Anson.

Mr. Morrow made his home in Anson until the building of the new town of Stamford, when he removed to the latter place in 1900. In January of that year he opened up a banking business here in connection with J. G. Lowdon of Abilene. They immediately set to work upon the erection of a handsome stone building, the first one of the kind to be erected in this city. The banking firm continued here for about five years, at the end of which time Mr. Morrow purchased Mr. Lowdon’s interest in the business and for a short time carried it on alone under his own name, but it was finally merged into the present Citizens National Bank of Stamford.

Mr. Morrow was united in marriage in 1885 to Miss Sarah Emma Grayum, a native of Falls county, Texas, and they how have two children, a son and a daughter. In political matters Mr. Morrow has always been an active supporter of Democratic principles, but without aspiration for office. In his business life nearly all of his ventures have proved successful. The principal exception, however, through no fault of his, was the first which occurred in Anson in 1893 and caused him considerable loss, as it did many other citizens. He is resourceful, enterprising and energetic and whatever he undertakes is crowned with successful completion. Mr. Morrow is a close observer and possessions sound judgment in all business matters, while through his efficient management the Citizens’ National Bank of Stamford is not only a leading institution of the city but also of a large extent of surrounding country which it draws its patrons.

Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. II, pp. 478-479.