Judge William D. Crump biography

JUDGE WILLIAM D. CRUMP, one of the first settlers and a prominent and successful stockman and business man of Lubbock county, has been identified with the plains country for the past fifteen years and has become a foremost factor in the material, civic and social progress and welfare of his country.

Born at Louisville, Kentucky, in 1844, he was a son of R. G. and Sarah (Dorsey) Crump. His father, a native of Virginia, was one of the early settlers of Louisville and a merchant in that city for many years. He moved to St. Louis in the seventies, but after residing there a few years died and was taken back to Louisville for burial. Judge Crump’s mother, who died in Louisville, was a native of Maryland, and her father was a cousin of Senator Dorsey of that state.

Judge Crump was reared in his native city and besides the public school education attended the Kentucky University at Lexington. He joined the Confederate army in the winter of 18663, enlisting in Company C, Third Kentucky Cavalry, General Morgan’s division. General Morgan’s army, as is well known, was composed of the flower of Kentucky soldiery, picked from the hardiest and those best fitted for rigorous service. As a member of this famous division his duties were mostly in scouting, although frequently engaged in skirmishes and battles in Kentucky and Tennessee. The Cumberland river was the dividing line between the northern and southern armies was it was left to Morgan’s men to guard that river for a distance of a hundred miles or more. Mr. Crump was among those chosen to participate in that famous raid led by Morgan into Ohio, in July, 1863. There were twenty-five hundred of the raiders and it is estimated that at one time there were as many as two hundred and fifty thousand northern soldiers, regulars and militia, engaged in chasing or endeavoring to check the daring southern cavalrymen. They crossed the Ohio river at Brandenburg, forty miles below Louisville, then went northeast around Cincinnati, and at the fight at Buffington Island, Mr. Crump, with several hundred others, was captured. General Morgan kept on and three hundred and fifty of his men succeeded in getting across the Ohio into West Virginia, but the commander himself and the rest of his men were captured. Morgan was taken to the state penitentiary at Columbus, but later effected his escape. Mr. Crump, when captured, was taken to Camp Morton at Indianapolis, where he was kept about a month and was then confined at Camp Douglas, Chicago, was not released by exchange until after the surrender of the southern armies.

From his adventurous and varied army experience he returned to Louisville and was in his father’s mercantile business for six years. He then spent several years in the west, principally in Colorado, where he was in the mines part of the time and in mercantile business the rest. In 1874 he came to Texas, and for several years was engaged in farming or merchandising in Dallas county. He then located at Henrietta in Clay county, and was a merchant there until 1890, in which year he came out to the plains country and located in Lubbock county, which has been his home ever since. In this county he has given his attention principally to farming and stock raising. His ranch ten miles west of Lubbock contains four sections and is one of the fine pieces of property in this section of the state. Judge Crump has been very prosperous as a stockman, as also in his various other enterprises. His residence is in the town of Lubbock, although the family usually spend the summer months out on the ranch.

When Judge Crump came to Lubbock county in 1890 there were only two ranches in the county. In the same year the county was organized and an interesting county-seat content arose between two town sites established in short order solely to gain that coveted honor—one of them north and the other south of Yellowhouse canyon. Finally as a compromise the present town of Lubbock, lying between the two, was started and became the county seat, and the rival sites soon became identical with the prairie and are at present unknown except to the old-timers. The only place of business that existed when Judge Crump came was a store kept by George Singer, who had been on the plains a number of years and who, when the town of Lubbock was started, not caring to stay and endure the stress of competition and permanent settlement, pulled his stakes and left.

Judge Crump has been very active in affairs outside of his private business. As a leading Mason, in 1899 he organized the Masonic lodge in Lubbock and was its worshipful master the first two years. The order now has a flourishing organization in Lubbock, with both blue lodge and chapter. In 1894 a camp of Confederate Veterans was organized in Lubbock, the F. R. Lubbock Camp, and Judge Crump has been its commander since it started. Judge Crump has served by election two terms as county judge of Lubbock county.

Judge Crump was married in Dallas county to Miss Mary King, who was born and reared in that county. They have four children, David, Robert, Mamie and Katie Bell.

Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. I, p. 649.