Thomas Nelson Culberhouse biography

Out in the vicinity of Fruitland where peaches and apples, instead of cotton, are becoming “king” and where the cotton fields are being planted to orchards, and where a complete revolution is taking place in the domain of farming, T. N. Culberhouse, whose name introduces this article, maintains his home and is a leading actor in the transformation from agriculture to horticulture which is so rapidly going on. His farms lie in that fertile belt so adapted to the requirements of fruit growing and the encouragement he is lending to the new industry has given it a considerable impetus and marks him as one of the progressive men of his locality.

Mr. Culberhouse was born in Johnson county, Texas, February 14, 1859, where his father, William J. Culberhouse, settled in 1853. The latter homesteaded a farm there, improved it and cultivated it during his active life, dying on it July 19, 1903, at seventy-nine years of age. William J. Culberhouse was born in North Carolina, and was a son of Thomas Culberhouse, who migrated to Weakley county, Tennessee, where William J. grew up and married his first wife. Thomas Culberhouse was a man without wealth and in the days of slavery followed the business of overseeing. The plantation offered opportunities for plenty of industry and at this exercise his children took serious turns. No education worth the name came to William J. and his first wife’s death, in Tennessee, left him with two children, viz.: Nancy, who married William Alexander, and died in Corsicana, Texas, leaving children, William and Elisha; and George Culberhouse, who passed away in Johnson county, Texas, without marriage. Mrs. Elizabeth Janes became William J. Culberhouse’s second wife. She had three children, whose names were: Mary, of Johnson county, is the wife of Jack Jones; Lou, who died in Dallas as the wife of Haywood Dickey, and Mrs. Fount Jones, who resides in Parker county. The issue of William J. and Elizabeth Culberhouse is Cordelia, who died at the age of thirteen; Jonathan, of Parker county, Texas; Thomas Nelson; Samuel, of Indian Territory; Clint, of Hood county, Texas; Etta, deceased wife of “Sub” Darnaby; and Emma, who married Thomas Darnaby of Cleburne.

The farm in Johnson county served as the scene of T. N. Culberhouse’s youthful life and his training in school was altogether of the rural sort. There was plenty of work on his father’s two hundred acre farm and about his gin and he filled a niche about the place in any capacity. When near his majority he married and started life as a renter and in a limited way. When he came into Montague county he had a pony team and wagon and a few household effects and he located, in 1884, on what is now the Cleveland farm. For four years he continued to rent and later bought a tract of land in the neighborhood of Brushy creek school house. In 1898, he came to his present location at Pleasant Ridge. His farms embrace one hundred and sixty acres, a few acres of which are already set to fruit, and he is planning extensive additions which will eventually convert a cotton farm into a fruit farm.

March 7, 1878, Mr. Culberhouse married Mary Susan Martin, a daughter of Elisha Martin, who came to Texas from Henry county, Tennessee, where Mrs. Culberhouse was born January 23,1858. The other Martin children were: Gresham, of Montague county; Emma, deceased, married W. J. Callahan, of Montague county; William W., of Roger Mills county, Oklahoma; Earnest L., of Montague county; Silas S., of the same county; Effie, wife of Cyrus Rowland, of Weatherford, Oklahoma; and Uela, now Mrs. Charles Johnson, of Vernon, Texas.

Mr. and Mrs. Culberhouse’s children are: Elisha Aldo, who married Trula Arnold and resides in Roger Mills county, Oklahoma; Walter L., who is with the paternal home;Lilie E., wife of Walter Ditto, of Montague county, and Mary Alice and Katie E., young ladies at home. Hattie died at two years of age. Democracy states the Culberhouse political faith and in voting they do their whole duty as they see it. Mr. Culberhouse is a man of thrift and much enterprise and has ever done his duty to man.

Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. I, pp. 650-651.