Smith County, Texas

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By Alliene Gaston Coker

Finish Ewing Gaston was born 7 October 1849. Bessie C. James, daughter of Daniel D. James and Angeline Love, was born 5 January 1855. They were married in Simpkins Chapel, Nashville, TN, 4 May 1876.

He died 16 July 1923 and she died 5 January 1855. They are both buried in Oakwood Cemetery, Tyler, Smith County, TX.

Finis Ewing Gaston and wife, Bessie had six children as follows:

  1. Thomas Ewing was a Dentist like his father, born 22 February1877 died April 24, 1936. Married Homer Callier, 2 children Frank & Margaret. 2nd wife Berenice Lane
  2. Margaret Lena was a musician, studied organ in Dallas and was Organist for Fist Presbyterian Church many years. At the time of John Anderson's ministry in our Church, we built the new church on corner of Rusk and College, and my sister, Margaret Gaston Willimas gave them a new organ in memory of her late husband, Thell C. Willimas who was a faithful officer in the Church for many year. Margaret was born 13 November - died 3 November1973. Lacked a few days of being 94. She is buried in Rose Hill Cemetery, Tyler, Smith Co, TX.
  3. Roy James studied at Tyler Commercial College and his first job was Secretary to the President of First National Bank of Mineola, Texas, of which bank he later served as President. He married Reba Perkins of Palestine
    • James is with a large corporation from which he is now retired and lives in Mexico.
    • Lois lives in Los Angeles, Calif, now retired from the Los Angeles School System after serving as Principal of one of the schools.
  4. Bessie Florelle, who was a talented artist; married Herbert Harper of Terrell who was in furniture business. Bess had a very crippling kind of arthritis from which she suffered for years until her death on 30 May 30 1961. She was born May 19, 1884.
  5. Finis Earl Gaston, born 28 July 1887; died in California 25 October 1957. His first wife, Nona Egan was a fine person and they had two lovely daughters:
    • Alice Gaston Murphey is wife of John R. Murphey of New Orleans. They race horses and spend several months of the year near race tracks. They have one son, John R. Murphey Jr. who lives in Houston. They are kept very busy with activities of three sons who are at athletic sports age.
    • Ruth Gaston Thomas was first married to George Kean on 19 June 1937. He died in 1953. They had three fine daughters. Ruth's second husband, was James R. Thomas - they were married in Dec. 26, 1957. He died Nov. 15, 1974. I feel very close to these two sisters and wish I could be with them more often.
    • Earl, a fine son who grew up in Tyler in his Aunt Margaret's home and is now a prominent physician of Kingsville, Texas. Earl married Mattie Tadlock of Dayton, Texas who was Technician in John Sealy Hospital. They are a fine family. I don't think Kingsville could have thrived nearly so well without the Gastons.
  6. Alliene was born 17 June 1891 and married at the age of 17 years to Frank Reichardt Coker, of whom I was very proud then and remained so during the rest of his life which ended 19 April 1955. Sixteen years before that, he had a complete A-V hear block from which or Tyler-Dallas doctors pronounced a probable life span of nor more than 2 weeks. But he became a consultant patient of Dr. George Hermann, head of heart department of John Sealy Hospital who taught him to live with this trouble which lasted 16 year of very busy, happy life; making gifts of wood which he carved on his electric tools for children who were happy company for him. He also found that he had a talent for painting, which he had never had the time to pursue before. His painted pictures are a beautiful living memory to me. He died at his desk at Coker Electric Company on 19 April 1955. Alliene died 24 October 1991 in Dallas, TX - over 100 years old.
    • Dorothy is my pride and joy. She married a prominent lawyer in Dallas, whose name is O. Marcus Stubblefield. They are both active in Highland Presbyterian Church and its choir. She was born 03 Sep 1909 and died 2 January 2002 in Dallas, TX He was born 3 December 1903 and died 8 January 1990 in Dallas, TX

Note: Death date for Alliene addred from the Social Security Index as well as birth and death dates for the Stufflefields. Some other dates were added from the Cemetery Records of Smith County, Vol. 1, ETGS. - MLB

A special thanks to Joe Gaston who transcribed this manuscript and to
Ann Stubblefield Ince of Knoxville, TN, granddaughter of Alliene Gaston Coker,
for giving permission to publish the manuscript.

History of Tyler and the Gaston Family


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