Saturday, September 2, 2017

Crockett Brothers

Photographer: Crockett Bros
New Boston, Texas

William Wallace Crockett
(22 Sep 1864 - 11 Sep 1946)
Eli C. Crockett
(11 Dec 1870 - 7 Jul 1895)
Nathanial Crockett
(Jan 1862 - )
Samuel Ransom Crockett
(16 May 1859 - 16 Jun 1911)
John Crockett
(1871 - )

Research is hindered somewhat as Crockett is a widely popular name in Texas so there is a city, a county, several buildings and streets and a very large family named Crockett. Not to mention that these Crockett Brothers were in the family line with the Famous Crockett.

There were five Crockett brothers living in east Texas in the late nineteenth century. There is evidence that William Wallace, Nathan C. and Eli C. were photographers. The other two brothers do not appear to have been photographers at any point.

That established, there seems no evidence that any of the three photographer brothers ever lived in New Boston, TX. Mentions were found in Durant, OK, and Clarksville, Detroit, Longview and Blossom, TX. These towns are all within a one hundred mile circle in North East Texas. New Boston, TX, is also within that range.

Eli C. Crockett is a bit harder to find. It appears he died in 1895 at 25 years old.

William Wallace Crockett seems to be the most persistent in the photography business. He started about 1890 and continued until his death in 1946. Further, William Wallace Crockett’s son William Yxl Crockett worked as photographer with his father and continued with his own studio according to records, as late as 1956. David Alma Crockett, another son of William Wallace Crockett, was also a photographer.

Since William Wallace Crockett moved around a bit, city directory listings for him are scarce. The dates and birthplaces of his children have been added to the timeline to

assist in establishing his locations in those years.

1862 Jan
Nathaniel C. Crockett born
1864 Sep 22
William Wallace Crockett born
1870 Dec 11
Eli C. Crockett born
Nancy Rebbecah Crockett, a sister, marries George Campbell Baum another photographer who also lived in Texas, mostly in Whitesboro.
1885 May 08
Galveston (TX) Daily News - Detroit, TX, photograph gallery of E. C. Crockett damaged in wind storm. If this is Eli C. Crockett, he would be only about 15 years old. This could mean that there was another E. C. Crockett working in the same area. (See next row, below)
1885 May 09
William Crockett’s daughter Mona May Crockett born in Clarksville, TX

1888 May 12
William Crockett’s daughter Ora R. Crockett born in Red River County, TX (Probably Clarksville)
1890 - 1892
Texas State Gazette - Blossom, TX, Eli and William listed as Crockett Brothers Photography
1891 Apr 19
William Crockett’s son David Alma Crockett is born in Texas (apparently Blossom, TX)
1893 Sep 14
William Crockett’s daughter Ila Vee Crockett was born in Clarksville, TX
1895 Jul 07
brother Eli C. Crockett dies in Grayson County, TX
1896 - 1898
Texas State business directory - Clarksville, TX, as Nathaniel C. and William listed as Crockett Brothers Photography
1898 Apr 06
William Crockett’s daughter Dimple Dee Crockett is born in Clarksville, TX

1901 Jan 16
William Crockett’s daughter Leona C Crockett is born in Texas
1905 Jun 26
William Crockett’s son William Yxl Crockett is born in McAlester, Oklahoma
McAlester, OK, city directory as photographer at 223 e Choctaw; daughter Ora R. Crockett works in studio
1907 Aug 23
William Crockett’s son James Azo Crockett is born in Oklahoma
1910 Apr 23
US census in McAlester, OK, as photographer with Art Gallery
1920 Jan 08
US census in Colfax, NM, as photographer with Art Gallery; note at same address John D. Witers, spouse of daughter Leona A. Crockett, is also a photographer
1940 May 06
US census as photographer in Gregg, TX

1940 Dec 26
Texas Death Certificate wife Kate C. (Butler) Crockett dies in Gregg, TX
Longview, TX, city directory as photographer; son William Yxl Crockett at same studio
1946 Nov 09
William Wallace Crockett dies at age 82 in Longview, Gregg County, TX

This cabinet card must have been finished around those years 1890-1892 when William and brother Eli C. Crockett worked together in Blossom, TX, or perhaps the years 1896-1898 when William and brother Nathan C. Crockett worked together in Clarksville, TX.

New Boston is about 60 miles from Blossom, TX, and about 40 miles from Clarksville, TX.

See another example of Crockett Brothers photography at Langdon Road web site.

Galveston (TX) Daily News - Detroit, TX -
08 May 1893

Not the one you were looking for? Here's the photographer's INDEX by name. Listed here are all the Cabinet Card photographers of the 19th century found in LOST GALLERY. This is a work in progress. For a look at the original postings go to LOST GALLERY.


  1. I have card photographs that were taken in Oklahoma at what I believe would have been a Presbyterian Indian School. The time frame is in the mid 1880s I believe. My grandmother was a missionary there and appears in several of the photographs. They all indicate Crockett Bros, Clarksville, Texas. I am trying to discover where the school was located in Oklahoma, it no longer exists but I have no other information. The building was a large woodframe dormatory style building with a bell tower. Contacts may have been W F Ford and Dr Ellis and Will Ellis and their families along with my grandmother Martha Evelyn Ashley or Brown

    1. Thanks for your note.

      From all I have found, the Crockett brothers worked in many places in Texas and Oklahoma. It’s clear they might have gone anywhere there was a rail line.

      There are records that put William Crockett in Clarksville, TX from 1885 to 1898. Also, William Crockett lived in McAlester, OK, around 1905 to 1910. It is no stretch to guess there would have been rail lines connecting them with Ardmore, OK.

      Perhaps if you contacted the Ardmore Historical Society they might be able to locate the school building site for you. They also have a Facebook page where you could post a photo of the building.

      If you send scans or photographs of your cards, I will add the examples to the Crockett page and perhaps someone will recognize the location. In your scans, be sure the edges show, no cropping, as the edges sometimes tell a lot about the age of the card. If sending photographs of the cards, avoid shadows or glare. Send to the email address in the profile at the bottom of the page.

      Thanks again!


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