James Spurgeon Williams
Navarro County, Texas


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James Spurgeon Williams was born on August 27, 1891 at Raleigh, Navarro County, Texas. He was the son of Joseph Thomas Williams and Alice Zelina (McAfee) Williams.  James Spurgeon Williams was a police officer in Corsicana and the photo to the left was taken from Chief Will Knight's Police book which states he was a patrolman.  James' father was a former Frost, TX marshal and also appears in Will Knight's book as the Corsicana Jailer.  James was married to Dollie Ellis and later to Zella Mae Barnes on April 10, 1943.  He died at his residence at Athens, Henderson Co., TX on December 14, 1948 and was buried at the Hamilton-Beeman Cemetery, Retreat, Navarro County, Texas.

 

Children of James Spurgeon Williams & Dollie (Ellis) Williams:

Name

Born

Died

Spouse

Mary Joe Williams abt 1920 UNKNOWN Donald F. Price [bur at Oakwood Cem, Corsicana, TX]
James D. "Bud" Williams
Obituary
Mar 12, 1924 - Mar 12, 1989 Edna O'Connor

James Spurgeon Williams

 
Hamilton-Beeman Cemetery
Navarro County, Texas

Spurgeon Williams
1891 - 1948
In our hearts you live forever

 

J. S. Williams Will Be Tried in Dallas Court

CORSICANA, Texas, Nov. 17 - A change of venue for J. S. Williams, formerly city policeman, was granted Monday by District judge Hawkins Scarborough and the accused will be tried in Dallas County, according to a statement Tuesday.
Williams was tried with Jim Green, city policeman, and Earl Horton, railroad officer, in connection with the fatal shooting of Jack Coker of Ellis County in the eastern portion of Corsicana the night of March 6, 1924. Horton and Green were acquitted by the jury and Williams found guilty of manslaughter and his punishment was assessed at two years in the State penitentiary.
Upon motion of the defense several months ago, Judge Scarborough granted a new trial for the accused and the case was set for the July term of the District Court. The case was reset for the October term of court.

Williams Given Suspended Term

J. S. Williams, former policeman of Corsicana, was found guilty of manslaughter Thursday by a jury in Judge C. A. Pippen's Criminal District Court and was given a two-year suspended sentence. He was alleged to have shot and killed Jack C. Coker in Corsicana on March 6, 1924. The officer said he was fired upon when he attempted to stop an automobile and returned the fire.
Two other officers who were with Williams when the shooting took place were tried and acquitted. Williams was found guilty of manslaughter and sentenced to two years in the penitentiary. He was granted a new trial and change of venue to Dallas County.

 

Policeman's Trial Nearing Close

Testimony in the case of J. S. Williams, former policeman of Corsicana, being tried for the second time charged with the killing of Jack C. Coker in Corsicana on March 6, 1924, will probably be finished Wednesday morning in Judge C. A. Pippen's Criminal District Court.  Williams will be placed on the stand in his own defense about 10 a.m. Wednesday, said Fred Upchruch, former City Attorney of Corsicana, who is one of the defense attorneys.
Two other former officers who were with Williams when the shooting took place, testified Tuesday afternoon that they returned the fire after five men in an automobile had opened fire on them when they attempted to stop the automobile.  They were Jim Green and Earl H. Horton, then a railroad detective at Corsicana and now a special deputy of Dallas County.
All three officers were indicted following the killing, and Green and Horton were acquitted, while Williams was found guilty of man slaughter and given a two-year penitentiary sentence in his first trial. he was granted a new trial and the case brought to Dallas on change of venue.
Mr. Green testified that on the night of the killing he, with Williams and Horton, were about a block from the house of Lucille Harris when they heard shouting and a commotion and saw three men struggling on the front porch of the house. Two of the men dragged the third man out to an automobile standing at the curb and got into the car. Two other men, whom the officers had not seen up to that time got into the car from the other side and the auto was started. Mr. Green said. The officers attempted to stop the car and Williams leaped onto the running board. Some one in the back seat fired three shots at Williams, who fell to the ground.
"I thought Williams was shot and shot at one of the tires to stop them," Mr. Green said. "The other two men then began to shoot, too. I fired only one shot. They drove away but later were arrested. Only two men and the dead body of Coker were in the car then. The other two men have never been located and we never learned who they were."
Thirty-five members of the civics class from the Garland High School headed by Superintendent E. D. Bussey sat in the courtroom and listened to the testimony in this case. They were also shown through the jail and Criminal Courts Building by Deputy Sheriffs.

 
OBITUARY

J. S. WILLIAMS IS VICTIM OF HEART ATTACK TUESDAY
James Spurgeon Williams, aged 75 years, native of Raleigh, Navarro County, died at his home in Athens Tuesday morning with a heart attack.
Williams was reared at Emmett and Frost and resided in Corsicana for many years where he served for some time as a city policeman.
He later was engaged in the produce business here. At the time of his death he was in the trucking business.
Surviving are his wife, Mrs. Mae Williams, Athens, a son, J. D. Williams, Athens; a daughter, Mrs. Mary Jo. Price, Corsicana; mother, Alice Williams, Corsicana, two brothers Joe H. Williams, Corsicana, and Charles Reno Williams, Ft. Worth; three sisters, Mrs. J. D. Skinner, and Mrs. W. C. Watson, both of Corsicana and Mrs. R. J. Cox, Fort Worth; four grandchildren and a number of other relatives.
Funeral services will be held on Wednesday afternoon from the Wednesday afternoon at 2 o'clock from the Corley Funeral Home

The Corsicana Daily Sun - December 14, 1948
 

OBITUARY

FUNERAL SERVICES FOR J. S. WILLIAMS HELD WEDNESDAY

Funeral services for James Spurgeon Williams, 57, who died at his home in Athens with a heart attack early Tuesday morning, were held Wednesday afternoon at 2 o'clock from the Corley Chapel. Burial was in the Hamilton Cemetery. Rev. R. E. Bost, Athens Baptist minister, conducted the rites.
Born at Raleigh, Williams was reared at Emmett and Frost and was a policeman in Corsicana during the oil boom, later entering the produce business. He was a truck operator at the time of his death.
Surviving are his wife, Mrs. Mae Williams, Athens, a son, J. D. Williams, Athens, a sister [daughter], Mrs. Mary Jo Price, Corsicana; mother, Mrs. Alice Williams, Corsicana; two brothers, Joe H. Williams, Corsicana, and Charles Reno Williams, Fort Worth; three sisters, Mrs. J. D. Skinner, and Mrs. W. C. Eatson [Ellington], both of Corsicana, and Mrs. R. J. Cox of Fort Worth; four grandchildren, and a number of other relatives.
Pallbearers were P. B. Denis, W. F. Price, E. W. Braley, H. Tipton, C. A. Patterson and Sam S. Skinner.

The Corsicana Daily Sun - December 15, 1948

Notes:

  • TXDI: James Spurgeon Williams; Henderson Co., Dec 14, 1948; 52827

    Corsicana City Directory:
    1926 - J. Spurgeon (Dollie) huckster h712 S 14th
    1931 - J. Spurgeon (Dollie) h 712 S 14th
    1936 - J. Spurgeon (Dollie) driver H 712 S14th

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Edward L. Williams & Barbara Knox