Lock E. Houston

Source: Rowland, Dunbar, ed. Mississippi, Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, Arranged in Cyclopedic Form, in three volumes. Vol. 3. [Contemporary Biography] Atlanta: Southern Historical Publishing Association, 1907. pages 356-357

Houston, Lock E., who died at his home in Aberdeen, Jan. 20, 1897, was one of the able legists and jurists of Mississippi, and was a citizen of prominence and influence, commanding the high esteem of the general public and of his professional confreres. Judge Houston was born in Blount county, Tenn., in the year 1814, and was a son of Robert and Martha (Blackburn) Houston, both of whom were born in Virginia. The latter's father, Capt. William Blackburn, was killed in the battle of King's Mountain, in the War of the Revolution, and her uncle, Rev. Gideon Blackburn, was known as the "fighting preacher." Judge Houston was reared and educated in Tennessee, having been graduated in the academic department of the State university, at Knoxville, from which he received the degree of Bachelor of Arts. After his graduation, he was a successful teacher in Tennessee and Alabama, in the meanwhile taking up the study of law. He was admitted to the bar at Eutaw, Ala., and in 1843 he came to Mississippi and located in Aberdeen where he passed the remainder of his life and where he attained to marked distinction in his profession. During the "reconstruction" period, after the Civil war, he rendered great service to the State in keeping the negroes under proper subjection and in rehabilitating the prostrate civic and industrial life of this commonwealth. During this period, and for many years thereafter, he was chairman of the Democratic committee of his county, having been one of the most loyal supporters of the cause of his party. Shortly after taking up his residence in Aberdeen he was elected to the legislature, and he was a member of the same during the war, being speaker of the house the greater portion of this critical era in the history of the State. He was also a member of the constitutional convention of 1865. Prior to the war he served as judge of the circuit court and during the administration of Governor Lowry he was again appointed to this office, which he resigned some time prior to his death. The governor conferred this appointment upon him in March, 1887. He dignified the bench by his able services, even as did he his profession, and his life counted for good in all its relations. He was affiliated with the Masonic fraternity and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, in the Aberdeen lodge, of which latter he was the first incumbent of the office of "Noble Grand." His religious views were in harmony with the tenets of the Presbyterian chruch, though he was not formally identified with the same. For more than forty-two years the firm name of Houston & Reynolds has stood continuously representative of the prominent legal associations of Monroe county, the original principals having been the subject of this memoir and Col. R. O. Reynolds, and the present members of the firm being the respective sons, Judge David W. Houston and R. O. Reynolds, Jr. In 1857 Judge Houston was united in marriage to Miss Sue Maury parish, daughter of David Winston Parish, of Nashville, Tenn., and cousin of Commodore Maury, and she preceded him to the life eternal, her death having occurred in October, 1885. Of the seven children of this union the following brief record is entered: Mary is the wife of Benjamin H. Gillespie, of Aberdeen; Robert P. is a successful business man of Aberdeen; Elizabeth is the wife of John F. Johnston, of Decatur, Tex.; Doctor Lock E. died in Aberdeen in 1902 at the age of thirty-nine years; David W. is individually mentioned in this compilation; Joseph S. is commercial agent for the Cotton Belt railroad and resides in Memphis, Tenn.; and Sue Maury, who resides in the city of Aberdeen.


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