ROBERT OLIVER WEST. Among the leading fruit growers of Montague county, and one whose orchard lies against the townsite of the prominent shipping point of Fruitland and possesses the largest bearing area of the fruit district, is Robert O. West, whose name is mentioned as the subject of this sketch. He has not been a resident of county since pioneer days, but came to it only in 1899, at which time he purchased the small farm of thirty-one acres, nearly twenty of which is devoted to the profitable and interesting vocation of fruit culture.
Mr. West came to Texas in 1888 from Caldwell county, North Carolina, and for five years he was stationed on a farm in Tarrant county. In 1893 he located on a farm in the southwest corner of Clay county and was identified with agriculture in that county until his entry to Montague. He was born in the Georgia county above named April 22, 1846, and passed the years of his minority there on a farm[.] His father was Hiram West, a blacksmith, who settled on Little river, east of Lenore, in that county, when a young man. He was born in the county in 1812, and passed all except the last three years of his life there, dying in Wautaga county in 1892. Alexander West, grandfather of our subject, settled in that same Caldwell county neighborhood in his early life, and died there about 1862 at the age of about eighty years. His wife was Patience Allen, and their children were: Ananias, who moved out to Missouri and died; Isaac, who died in Caldwell county, N. C.; Elizabeth, wife of Clisby Cobb, resides in North Carolina; Harvey, a Baptist minister who dropped dead in his pulpit in North Carolina; and Hiram, our subject’s father.
Hiram West married Juliana Haas, a daughter of Abraham Haas, who died in Watauga county, North Carolina. The issue of their union were: Robert O., Caroline, who died in North Carolina, single; Malinda, of Lincoln county, North Carolina, widow of Thomas Williams; Louisa, of Wautaga county, wife of John Williams; Abigail, died unmarried; Ananias, died without marriage; William, of Lincoln county, North Carolina, and Harriet, wife of John Oxentine, of Wautaga county, North Carolina.
Robert O. West came to his majority in the country where he was born and obtained little knowledge from the prevailing schools. In 1864, he enlisted in Company G, Third North Carolina Infantry, Captain Bristow and Colonel Hindance. His regiment joined General Johnston’s army near Wilmington, North Carolina, and fought at Kenston and Bentonville. He was surrendered at Bush Hill and got back home in May of 1865. As soon as he was sufficiently recuperated to do so he took up farming and followed it with some degree of profit while he remained in that state.
In December, 1866, Mr. West married his first wife. She was Miss Mary C. Beach, a daughter of Rufus Beach. His wife died in 1880, leaving children as follows: George, Avery, Lola, Mattie, and Walter. Mr. West married Mrs. Louisa Story, a daughter of Robert Green. She died in Tarrant county, Texas, and Mr. West married his third and last wife in the same county. His present wife was Mrs. Ida Adams, a native of the state of Georgia. By this marriage Mr. West is the father of Cecil, Grace and Murrell.
Mr. West holds a membership in the Missionary Baptist church, and contents himself in politics voting the Democratic ticket. He affiliates with the “boys in gray” and belongs to Bowie-Pelham Camp, U. C. V.
Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. II, p. 497.