The Texas Historian, Volume 40, Number 4, March 1980 Page: 1
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MILDRED PAXTON MOODY:
FORMER FIRST LADY OF TEXAS
by MARTHA MOODY
O. Henry Junior High School, Austin
IN ABILENE on April 20, 1897, George and
Matilda Paxton became the proud parents of
a baby girl, Mildred, who was to become Mrs.
Dan Moody, first lady of Texas. Paxton's family
had been horse breeders in Kentucky; his wife
came from a family of Arkansas farmers. Both
were devout Baptists.
Mrs. Moody remembers a happy childhood.
The family lived in a large, semi-colonial house
on the north side of town, next door to the
"We had to make our own fun," Mrs. Moody
recalls. One of her favorite pastimes was "Cow-
boys and Indians." She adored the game, ex-
cept when the boys of the neighborhood forced
her to be a "squaw," instead of a warrior. An-
other source of entertainment was a pony and
cart. The children longed to ride the pony, but
when one of her sisters tried it, the pony
balked and sent her flying into a pond.
As Mildred grew older, her interests shifted
from ponies to automobiles, the newest craze.
Finally, after much pleading, her banker father
bought one of the first cars in Abilene.
After graduation from Simmons College (now
Hardin-Simmons University), she received a
masters in English at the University of Texas.
She wrote for the student newspaper, which
traditionally allowed a girl to serve as editor
one day each year. In 1918 she was awarded
that privilege and was grateful that Mrs.
Hobby, first lady at the time, allowed her to
crash a reception for President Woodrow Wil-
Mildred Paxton dressed for her wedding to
Dan Moody, April 20, 1926. All photographs
courtesy of Mrs. Dan Moody.
son's daughter, Margaret, who was in Austin
on a nationwide concert tour for the benefit of
the American Expeditionary Forces. The fu-
ture Mrs. Moody was very impressed with the
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Texas State Historical Association. The Texas Historian, Volume 40, Number 4, March 1980, periodical, March 1980; Austin, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth391511/m1/3/?q=%22georgia%20battalion%22: accessed April 9, 2020), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.