History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families Page: 293
IILSTORY OF TEXA~~~~~~~~~~~. 293~~
country, and one that lhas an honoral)le record.
The Hookers were originally from England.
They emigrated to the NewWorld in Colonial
times, and settled in New England, where
they are credited with having founded- the
town of Hartford, Connecticut, and where
they secured a strong footing and were afterward
influential factors in the settlement of
that locality. From there the branch to
which the subject of this notice belongs
moved to North Carolina, where three brothers
settled at a point in what is now Greene
county, named Hookerton +)r them. John
Hooker, the grandfather of James D., of this
article, was a North Carolina planter, a man
of some means, and a patriot in the times
that, as the historian wrote, i" tried nien's
souls." He served in the Revolution and
died in South Carolina. James W. Hooker,
the father of James D., was born in South
Carolina, in 1797, and there grew to inanhood,
receiving a liberal education in the
schools of that State. He early eAlihited a
taste for mathematics and became in a few
years proficient in astronomy and other applied
branches of that science. When a
young man, he went to Alabama, where he
married and became a pllanter arid slave
trader. Later he moved to Jackson county,
Florida, where he spent the remainder of his
life. He served in the Seminole war under
General Jackson; filled the office of Justice
of the P'eace in his county, became a ininister
of the Methodist Church, which he
served faithfully for twelve years, and died
in the enjoyment of a large property, and in
the consciousness of a well spent life. He
was greatly respected and exercised a wide
influence both as a citizen and as a minister.
His learning, his readiness as a talker, his
earnestness, his character as a man, made him
a tower of strength for order, law, morality
and Christianity in the newly settled localities,
where lie lived, and made hiis (leath a
public loss. lie died January 16), 1841.
Lavica Simmons, the wife of James W.
Hooker, and the mother of the subject of
thllis notice, was also a native of South Carolina,
being a daughter of Fountain and Elizabeth
Sinmmons, who were probably born in
South Carolina, being residents of the locality
where the Hookers lived, and who moved
about 1820 to Alabama. It was the attachment
that had been formed for the daughter
Lavica in the old State that took James AV.
to Alabama. This lady died in 1829, leaving,
four children, three of whom, Martha, Elizabeth
and Jane, are now deceased, the only
sur,'vivor being Jamnes D., of this article.
The last named was born in Dale county,
Alabama, June 24, 1828. lIe was reared in
Florida, Alabamna, and Georgia, and received
good educational advantages. In 1850 lie
caine to Texas and entered Fowler Institute,
at Rusk, where he remained three years.
He then engaged in teaching in Cherokee
county. Later lie engaged in farming, in
that and Houston .ountiez, following this
successfully till the opening of the war. lie
entered tlhe Confederate army in 1861, enlisting
in Company A, Carter's brigade of cavalry,
with which he served about a year, when
lie had to quit on account of sickness, and
returned homee. In 1863 lie moved to Milami
county, and settled on a farn-m near the present
town of Milano, where lie followed farming
for twenty years. In 1882 lie moved to
Milano, where he embarked in the mercantile
busitless. to which and his farming interests
lie has since devoted his time. He owns a
large amount of real estate in Milamn county,
which represents his earnings since moving
here thirty years ago, and considerable personal
property also. Hle has served as Con.
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Lewis Publishing Company, publisher. History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families, book, 1893; Chicago. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth29785/m1/307/ocr/: accessed December 8, 2016), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .