Family Histories of Coleman County, Texas

by Randy Briscoe

From A History of Coleman County and Its People, 1985 
edited by Judia and Ralph Terry, and Vena Bob Gates - used by permission

“Jay” Hunter was born August 6, 1902, a few miles south of Coleman, son of John Wesley and Anna Lee (Shelton) Hunter.  John Wesley, born in July 1873 in Mississippi, son of Johnny James and Margaret (Jumper) Hunter.  Anna Lee, born in October 1882 in Mississippi, daughter of Thomas Andrew and Rachel Adeline (Wood) Shelton.  Thomas Andrew had formerly resided in Pontotoc County, Mississippi.  John Wesley Hunter and Anna Lee Shelton married in Delta County, Texas, in 1898 (see Dossie Andrews Maples).  They moved from Delta County to Coleman County in 1901.  In 1906, they bought a place near Echo.

“Jay” Hunter married Sara Mae Trent, November 11, 1922 (see Emory Trent).  They have four living children: James F. of Coleman, Mary Louise (Hunter) Glass of Austin, Norma Lee (Hunter) Briscoe and Donald Ray “Don” Hunter of Midland.  “Jay” died January 13, 1976, having lived in Coleman since 1969.  Mae Hunter is still living in Coleman, near her son, James.

Excerpts of various conversations: Jay: “We had a bad drought in 1906 and 1918.  I’ve heard mamma talk about the one in 1906.  All of 1917 was dry.  Papa made 7 bales of cotton in 1917.  In 1918, we never put a sack in the field.  We’d got a bale sacking over that 60 acre field.  We got married in 1922 - that was a wet year; made a good crop.  James was born on the Jay Gould place, Louise on the Gates place and Norma, in ‘29, on the Morris place.  We were on the Morris place in ‘28, ‘29’, ‘30, and ‘31.  We were living on the river place when Don was born.  I had a big crop on the Morris place one year.  I made 84 bales of cotton; picked it all by hand.  In ‘32 I bought the place at Rockwood.  I don’t know how we kept from getting killed plowing by them mules.  I’ve plowed lots of times when there would be 7 or 8 of us plowing in the field.  We had a pair of mules - they were two and three years old when Papa bought ‘em.  We called ‘em Mike and Julie.  When he bought ‘em they weren’t broke.  They stayed together all their lives - they were 24 and 25 when they died.  We used to know people that would trade horses: have a wagon, have a whole bunch tied around it, go through the country from one trade day to the next.  First Monday was Coleman’s trade day, 3rd Monday was Cross Plains.  I’ve made ‘em both.”

Jay Hunter raised lots of cotton on rented land and fought the grasshoppers and boll weevils.  He also suffered through the droughts, dust storms and hailstorms.  He was a man of high integrity.  He worked from a young age at jobs that called for hard labor and perseverance.  He was a man of few words and had a calm temperament that was not easily aroused.

(Image to be added)

Mr. and Mrs. J. A. Hunter – 50th Wedding Anniversary

Families History Index
Coleman County Index
Please send additional links, comments or suggestions for articles to:

This page last updated November 27, 2005
© 1982 - 2005 Ralph Terry.  All rights reserved.