MASON CLEVELAND. The bar of Johnson county has been recognized for its eminent ability many years, some of the most distinguished lawyers of the state having felt honored to be considered in its membership. Among its younger members at the present time, as one who has already made a creditable place in the various departments of his profession, Mr. Mason Cleveland has special distinction as the incumbent of the office of county and district attorney.
A native of Angelina county, Texas, where he was born, March 31, 1871, he is a son of William and N. (Hollingsworth) Cleveland. His father, born in Georgia and reared in Mississippi, came to Texas in 1871, and after a brief location in Angelina county, during which Mason was born, he removed in 1872 with his family to Bosque county, locating at Kimball. His father has followed the blacksmith trade most of his life, having learned it when he was young. Both parents still live in Bosque county.
Mr. Cleveland obtained his early education by attending the schools of Kimball, and took up the study of law in the office of Poindexter and Padelford, of Cleburne, one of the most prominent legal firms and having one of the most extensive law libraries in Texas. This firm has been the school of instruction and practical preparation for several young men who are making their mark in the law. Mr. Cleveland was admitted to the bar in 1895, while serving a term as justice of the peace, an office to which he had been elected some time previously. It was only a short time after he began his practice in Cleburne before he was making a distinct success, with a very gratifying legal clientage. He became a candidate for county attorney in 1902, was elected by a handsome majority, being re-elected in 1904 without opposition. He is prosecuting attorney for both the county and district courts, and during his term of office has made the very successful record of having convicted more criminals than any preceding county attorney in the same length of time. A young many of force and energy, of open, frank manner, and as a speaker possessing a peculiar magnetism that appeals to the jury, he has found in the law an inviting field for his talents and is rapidly attaining the success to which he is entitled. His preceptor, Judge Padelford, pays him a high tribute as a man of the most sterling worth and character and of the finest qualities for a lawyer.
The family of Mr. Cleveland consists of himself and wife and little daughter, Mary. Before her marriage Mrs. Cleveland was Miss Florence Martin, daughter of the late John Frank Martin, one of the best known and most honored characters in Johnson county. Mr. Cleveland served as alderman of Cleburne one term. He is a thrice past master in the blue lodge of the Masons in Cleburne, and also affiliates with the chapter and commandery. He has been an elder in the Cumberland Presbyterian church since 1895.
Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas, Vol. II (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), pp. 85-86.