John E. Shelton, Jr. Family Papers
An Inventory of the Collection
Thomas Jefferson Johnson (1805-1868) and his wife Catherine Hyde (1810-1883) arrived in Texas in 1844. Originally from Norfolk, Virginia, Jefferson attended school at Augusta College, Kentucky and then taught in Jefferson City, Missouri where he met Catherine Hyde. After moving to Texas, Jefferson taught in several places before founding the Johnson Institute in 1852 on Bear Creek sixteen miles southwest of Austin in Hays County.
Jefferson and Catherine Hyde had six children, John Hyde Johnson, Elizabeth (Lizzie) Johnson, Emily Catherine (Emma) Johnson, William Johnson, Benjamin Johnson, and Annie Johnson. Some of the Johnson children rose to prominence in their communities. John Hyde Johnson served in the Civil War, rising to the rank of general in the Confederate army. Upon returning he worked as a clerk in the State Legislature. Lizzie Johnson, perhaps the most infamous Johnson, pursued many interests. Besides teaching at the Johnson Institute, Lizzie worked as a bookkeeper for prominent cattlemen. She also wrote occasional magazine and newspaper articles, which she sold to Frank Leslie Magazine. It was in the cattle business that Lizzie made her mark. She registered her mark and brand in the Travis County Record book in 1871. Later she and her husband Hezekiah G. Williams traveled the Chisholm Trail together, although they ran their businesses separately. Throughout her life Lizzie was known to be a shrewd business woman, and at the time of her death in 1924, the total value of her holdings was $188,441.12.
The Shelton family links its lineage to the Johnsons through Emily Catherine (Emma) Johnson (1843-1922) who married William Henry Greer (1845-1935). Greer served in the Confederate Army under Terry's Texas Rangers. The couple had six children, Annie Lucille Greer, Ophelia Kate Greer, Willie Idela Greer, Henry Crawford Greer, Thomas Johnson Greer, Melvin Glen Greer and Charles Hyde Greer.
Willie Idela Greer (1877-1963) married John Elbert Shelton (1871-1928). After passing the Texas Bar exam without formal education, John Elbert Shelton practiced law. He served both as county attorney and district attorney of Travis County. The couple had six sons, John E. Shelton Jr., Polk Shelton, Emmett Shelton, Edgar Shelton, Earl Shelton, and Harold Shelton. Both Polk Shelton and Emmett Shelton practiced law in Austin.
John E. Shelton, Jr. married Kathryn Cavett Shelton on April 27, 1919. Both graduated from Austin High School in 1918. John E. Shelton Jr., served as Travis County Commissioner during the 1930s. Elected in 1934, and reelected in 1936 and 1938, he served with A.P. Chote, Warren Freund, and J.T. Parker. Additionally, John E. Shelton Jr. served in the military during WWII (1939-1945).
Sources: Adapted from Handbook of Texas Online
Correspondence, photographs, certificates, newspaper clippings, diplomas, printed material, notes, artifacts, and oversized material document the activities of the John E Shelton Jr. Family. The collection (1898, 1907, 1914-1919, 1933-1964, 1976, undated) is divided into three series, John E. Shelton Jr. (1898, 1907, 1919, 1933-1964, undated), Kathryn Cavett Shelton (1914-1918, 1945, undated), and Oversized Material (1916-1919, 1951). The bulk of the collection is composed of correspondence (1918-1919, 1933-1951) within the John E. Shelton series from John E. Shelton Jr. to his wife Kathryn Cavett during World War II (1939-1945). The series also includes 1898 and 1907 ribbons commemorating Terry's Texas Rangers. The Kathryn Cavett Shelton series features a 1918 "school memory" scrapbook from her time as a student at Austin High School. Oversized Material (1916-1919, 1951) consist of a certificate for Willie Idela Greer Shelton from the Daughters of the Confederacy, a Texas National Guard Certificate, a Criminal District Attorney Election certificate for John E. Shelton and an Austin High School Diploma for John E. Shelton, Jr.
Material donated by John E. Shelton, Jr.
John E. Shelton, Jr. Family Papers (AR.I.001). Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, Texas.
Donor #: DO/1970/023
Donation Date: 3/19/70
Initial Inventory and Preliminary Processing by Tim Wilder, 1991. Final Processing and Encoding by Wendy Thompson, March, 2013. Revisions by Susan Rittereiser March, 2013.
Detailed Description of the Collection