University of Texas, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History

A Guide to the Jefferson Chaison-Holland Family Papers, 1880-1999

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Chaison, Jefferson
Title: Jefferson Chaison-Holland Family Papers,
Dates: 1880-1999
Abstract: Family papers document the Chaison and Holland families in Beaumont, Texas from 1880 to 1999 including the family businesses of The Texas Rice Land Company, Chaison Construction Company, and Jefferson Chaison Townsite Company.
Accession No.: 2003-168
Extent: 12 ft., 4 in.
Laguage: Materials are written in English.
Repository: Dolph Briscoe Center for American History,The University of Texas at Austin

Biographical Note

Claude Elery Holland was born in 1904 to William Claude Holland, son of William E. Holland and Josephine Brown, and Ola Gripon. Claude Elery Holland graduated from Beaumont High School; South Park Junior College; The University of Texas at Austin, where he earned a bachelor’s in business administration; and Houston’s School of Law. After graduating from law school, Claude Elery held many positions in insurance, the military, and law. He worked for T.H. Mastin and Company, in the insurance industry, as a territorial manager, and eventually retired as the owner-operator of Holland Insurance Agency. While working for T.H. Mastin and Company Holland married Eloise Chaison, who was born in 1909, and who also attended Beaumont High School. Prior to her marriage to Claude Elery, Eloise was wed to Edward Laughlin, who died May 13, 1937. She was a civic and church leader involved in the Junior League of Beaumont and the Texas Gulf Historical Society. Together Claude and Eloise had two children, David and Jimmie. While the children were still young, Claude Elery began a lengthy career in the Navy spanning 1942 to 1962. He sailed on the USS Starlight to Pearl Harbor, where he was an administrative assistant to the commander of the Pearl Harbor Navy Yard. Additionally, he was an air raid warden for Harris County in 1942. Claude Holland was a member of many organizations including the Beaumont Country Club, International Hospitality Committee, and Royal Order of Jesters. Both Claude and Eloise were members of the Anglo-Texan Society founded in 1953 to foster and promote friendship between Texas and the United Kingdom. One of Claude Elery’s cousins, Corwin G. Mendenhall, had a celebrated military career in the Navy. He was the Captain of the USS Warrington and wrote about his experiences aboard the USS Sculpin and the USS Pintado in his book, Submarine Diary.

Eloise Chaison Holland was born to Charles James Chaison and Lola Lebleu. Charles founded both the Jefferson Townsite Company, which engaged primarily in the rental of real estate and the construction of homes, and the Texas Rice Land Company, which profited from rice farming and cattle raising. Her grandparents were Clara Baldwin and Thomas Jefferson Chaison, who served as Jefferson County’s first county judge in 1890. Her great-grandparents were Elizabeth McFaddin and a cattle rancher, Magloire Chaison. Eloise Chaison’s lineage traces back to Jean Baptiste Chaison, the father of Magloire Chaison, and one of two veterans of the American Revolution buried in Jefferson County.

Scope and Contents

Correspondence, legal and financial documents, printed material, case files, maps, photographs, scrapbooks, and artifacts document the Chaison and Holland families in Beaumont, Texas from 1897 to 1999. The collection is comprised of five series: Claude Elery Holland papers, Eloise Chaison Holland papers, Holland family papers, Chaison family papers, and family business interests. Family members are listed chronologically within the Holland family papers and Chaison family papers. The majority of the records were created by Claude Elery Holland and Eloise Holland. Claude Elery’s papers document his life in the navy from 1941 to 1962, including military education, training orders, guides, and a typed diary of his experiences at Pearl Harbor. Eloise Chaison Holland’s papers document the resolution of her first husband, Edward Laughlin’s, estate, as well as Eloise’s presidency of the Junior League of Beaumont and membership in the Texas Gulf Historical Society. The Holland family papers reflect the lives of William Claude Holland, Ola Gripon, William E. Holland, Tracy Gripon, David Holland, Jimmie Holland, and Corwin Guy Mendenhall, including William Claude Holland’s career as an auto mechanics teacher at South Park Public Schools. The Chaison Family papers are comprised largely of correspondence between Charles J. and Lola Lebleu Chaison and their daughter Eloise. Assorted correspondence, ephemera, and newspaper clippings document Beaumont history, including early church history, Spindletop, and social events, as well as Chaison family members and friends, including Jefferson Chaison, Jean Houk, Jean Baptiste Chaison, Clara Chaison, and other prominent members of the Beaumont community. Family business interests include the Texas Rice Land Company, Chaison Construction Company, and Jefferson Chaison Townsite Company. Records of the Texas Rice Land Company and its parent company, the Jefferson Chaison Townsite Company, document the administrative history of the company, family struggles over the company’s management, and property lines. The Chaison Construction Company is documented only by a company calendar.


Use Restrictions

A portion of these papers is restricted. Contact repository for further information.

Index Terms

Chaison, Jefferson
Holland, Claude Elery
Holland, Eloise Chaison
Mendenhall, Corwin Guy
Chaison Construction Company
Jefferson Chaison Townsite Company
Texas Rice Land Company
Rice farmers-Texas
World War II

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Jefferson Chaison-Holland Family Papers, 1897-1999, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.

Detailed Description of the Papers


Claude Elery Holland Papers

4M816A Personal papers
Correspondence, July-October 1934
4M816B November 1934-1935
4M816C 1944-1983, undated
4M817A Education
Beaumont High School
Creative works
Composition book, undated
Dictation, undated
High School News, 1919-1923
Sketches, 1913, undated
Typing exercises, 1921
Printed material
Report card, 1917
Typing certificate, 1920
South Park Junior College
Creative works
English assignments, 1923-1924, undated
The Sparkplug, 1923
The Navigator, 1924
4M817B Printed material
Student term report, 1923
Diploma, 1925
Reunion program, 1983
University of Texas at Austin
Creative works
Chemistry exams, 1924
Business statistics assignments, 1925
Business administration notes and assignments, 1925-1926
4M817C Government course assignments, 1927
Philosophy essays, 1927
Physical Anthropology assignments, 1927
College notebook, 1927, undated
Assorted essays, undated
Printed material
International trade desk maps, undated
Commencement program, 1927
Law school
Exams, 1930-1933
Legal documentation
Birth certificate, 1904
Abstract of title, 1956-1957
4M818A 1962, 1970
Agreements, 1947-1970
Deeds, 1945-1960
Liens, 1965, 1976
Real estate
Averill Addition property, 1955-1961
4M818B D. Brown survey, 1954-1956
Kenwood, 1957-1960
West End buildings, 1951-1970
Financial documentation
Bank statements, 1962, 1967-1969, 1981
Financial notebook, 1938-1942
Mortgage repayment schedule, 1957-1977
Real estate tax receipts, 1955-1980
Receipts, 1981, 1983
Printed material
Certificates, 1976, 1979
4M818C Organizations
Anglo-Texan Society, 1968
Milege and expense travel record, 1938
Catalogs: Teatros and Conciertos, 1967
Greece, 1976
Trip mementos, 1967-1977
Beaumont Country Club
Membership list, 1946
Yearbook, 1948
International Hospitality Committee
Tentative program for Mr. Gurugobindo Basu, of Calcutta, India, 1961
Royal Order of Jesters
Roster, 1983
Newspaper clippings, 1963-1966, undated
Professional papers
Insurance manager
Letterhead, undated
Correspondence, 1942-1984
4M819A undated
Printed material
Forms, 1942-1956, undated
Indentification cards, 1942-1945, undated
Information guide for officers first reporting for duty, 1943
Naval reserve law seminar roster, 1957, 1959
Navy certificates, 1943-1962
Organization of German Secret Service charts, undated
Programs, 1944-1953
Travel vouchers, 1942-1945
Active duty for training orders, 1949-1962
Officer service record, 1956
Physical examination, 1941-1945
Creative works
Correspondence course, 1949-1957
History of USS Tarawa, undated
Notes on trip from Norfolk to Pearl Harbor, undated
Ships present at Navy Yard in Pearl Harbor, 1945
Financial documentation
Expenditure claims, 1943-1944
Receipts, 1942-1945
Assorted material, undated
3S116 Photographs
Naval Reserve Law Company, 1955-1957
Restricted Negatives, 1943, 1945
4M819A Harris County Air Raid Warden
Identification card, 1942
Training course final examination, undated


Eloise Chaison Holland Papers

4M819B Edward Laughlin Estate, 1915-1945
4M819C 1969-1999
4M820A Beaumont High School
Graduation book, 1925
Financial documentation
Balance sheet, 1956
Bank statements, 1947-1951
4M820B 1952-August 1954
4M820C September 1954-1960, 1982
Car license receipts, 1967-1972
4M820C Legal documentation
4M820C Birth certificate, 1909
Agreements, 1960, 1966
Deed, 1977
Junior Leage of Beaumont
Annual report, 1966-1967, 1970-1971
Program, 1946
4M821A Texas Gulf Historical Society,
Texas Gulf Historical and Biographical Record, 1972
4N78B Scrapbooks (2),
1901-1924, undated
4N79 1901-1924, undated
4M821A Newspaper clippings, 1949-1984, undated
Assorted material, 1940, undated


Holland Family Papers

4M821A William E. Holland
Legal documentation
Abstract of title, 1926, 1955
Deed, 1945
Funeral announcement, 1908
Tracy Gripon
Notebook of poems and letters, 1880
Mrs. Hal Gripon estate file, 1954
4M821B William C. Holland
Personal papers
Correspondence, 1900-1902
1911-1945, undated
Postcard collection, 1909-1912
University of Texas at A&M
Geometric plates, 1901
The Long Horn, Texas A&M Yearbook, 1903
Legal documentation
Deeds, 1923-1941
4M821C Trusts, 1905, 1955, 1961
Gould monument works guarantee, 1949
Funeral programs, 1964
Memorial service book, 1964
Sympathy cards, 1964
Professional papers
Beaumont High School
The Bee, 1911
Southpark High School
Exam administered, 1909
Legal documentation
Teaching certificate, 1912-1913
Teachers' contract, 1924-1927
Spindletop, 1920-1921
Heating, Ventilating, Air-Conditioning
Printed material
Letterhead, undated
4M822A Ola Gripon
Correspondence, 1898-1901, 1924-1944, undated
South End Beaumont School
Report book, 1894
Newspaper clippings, undated
Jimmie Holland
Creative works
School notes, 1954-1956
Printed material
Certificate, 1945
Newspaper clippings, undated
4M822B David Holland
Correspondence, 1966-1999, undated
4N25b Scrapbook, 1960-1965, undated
4M822C Newspaper clippings, 1955-1984
3S116 Photographs, undated
4M822C Corwin Guy Mendenhall
Printed material
Programs, 1939, 1956
Newspaper clippings, undated
Assorted individual newspaper clippings, 1935-1996, undated
3S116 Family photographs, 1976, undated


Chaison Family Papers

4M822C Jefferson Chaison
Printed material
Funeral announcement, 1897
Charles J. Chaison
Correspondence, 1942-1943, undated
Lola Leblue Chaison
Correspondence, 1922-1968, undated
4M823A Financial documentation
Receipts, 1951-1968
Chaison family newspaper clippings, 1960, 1972, 1976, undated
Assorted material
Beaumont history newspaper clippings, 1961-1980, undated
Correspondence, 1926-1987
Ephemera, 1902-1968, undated
Material, 1938
Newspaper clippings, 1899-1999, undated
3S116 Photographic material
Unidentified photos, undated
Unidentified negatives, 1944, undated


Family Business Interests

4M823B Texas Rice Land Company
Board of Director's meeting minutes, 1910, 1972-1976
Stockholders, 1967, undated
Proxy statement, undated
Annual reports, 1916-1917, 1930-1959
4M823C 1960-1972
Correspondence, 1937, 1949-1981, undated
Notes, 1955-1973, undated
Employee time book, 1968-1969
4M824A Holland's case file, 1972-1973, undated
Financial documentation
Estimated cost per acre of first crop rice, 1940-1952, 1975
Financial statements, 1957-1978
Invoices, 1951, 1955
Receipts, 1967-May 1968
4M824B June 1968-1982
Rice sales, 1967-1968
Sales tickets, 1951
Legal documentation
Legal correspondence, 1973-1974
Easement, 1975
Exxon royalties, 1975, 1981
Notice of producer rice acreage allotment, 1950-1981
Open space land application, 1980
Property descriptions of right of way deeds, 1967
4M824C Record of cooperator's decisions and progress in application, 1964
Record of premeasured acreage, 1960-1965
Report of acreage and certification of compliance, 1971-1973
Warehouse storage note and security agreements, 1970-1971
Water contract with Lower Neches Valley Authority, 1974
Cattle account, 1955-1958, 1968
Cattle inventory, 1966-1973
Soil and water conservation plan, undated
Printed material
Maps, 1956-1963, undated
OD1316 Oversize maps
East Lovell's Lake, Jefferson County, Texas, 1969
Geological structure map, undated
Map indicating land divisions and ownership, undated
Plan of proposed fresh water reservoir located on the property of Texas Rice Land Company (blueprint), 1944
Plat showing acreage of tracts in Texas Rice Land Company, 1949
Sketch map of P. Lemane and J.J. Chaison surveys, 1951
Soil and capability map, 1958
Unidentified maps, undated
Oversize newspaper clippings
4M824C Measurement conversion tables, undated
Newspaper clippings, 1953, 1971-1973, undated
Postcards, undated
Agricultural Stabliziation and Conservation Service
Committee minutes, 1959
Cotton and rice coverage plan, 1984
Newsletter, 1959
American Rice Incorporated
Stockholders meeting, 1979
American Rice Grower's Cooperative Association
Correspondence, 1953-1982
Report of examination, 1962-1972
4M825A Settlements, 1952, 1970-1973
Written notification of by-law consent, 1963
Farmers Storage Association
Balance sheet, 1970
Correspondence, 1982
Gulf Coast Storage Association
Balance sheet, 1970-1972
Correspondence, 1982
Mobil Chemical Company
Papers concerning waste water, 1965, undated
Rice Outlook
Conference articles, 1981-1982
Texas Agricultural Extension Service-Texas A&M University System
Publications, 1978-1984
United State Department of Agriculture
Jefferson County Soil Survey, 1965
United States Department of Commerce
Census of agriculture, 1968-1969
3S116 Photographs
Equipment, undated
4M825A Jefferson Chaison Townsite Company
Cattle branch record, 1971
Report on soil investigation, undated
Stockholders meeting minutes, undated
Chaison Construction Company
Calendar, 1965
Artifact Collection