Friday, January 30, 2009

Edward Larls Massey 1890-1958

"Ed" Massey was born near the town of Rhea Mills' in Collin County, Texas on 15 Aug 1890 and was the son of Wahren Massey (1837-1900) and Sallie Osburn. Ed was a small child when his mother died and about ten years old when his father died. Ed was raised in Montgomery County by his half-brother, John and only achieved a third-grade education.

Ed received 26 acres as payment for working at a local saw mill (currently owned by his son Earl). Before his retirement, he purchased the last two tracks of land that made up the Massey Farm. A house was on the new section of land, but the house was just a shell that was later finished out to become his retirement home.

Serving in the United States Army during World War One, he was originally assigned to a machine-gun squadron but asked to for a transfer because he recently gave his life to Christ and could not bring himself to kill another person. Little is known of his time in the Army and his great-grandson tried to get a copy of his records from the government, but the official records can not be found at this time. Ed's son's believed that he was assigned to the base hospital at Camp Mac Arthur in Waco, Texas and we do have several letters that he wrote home during this time that indicate he was in stationed in Waco. Ed's son Earl has a metal and several other pieces that were Ed's from his time in the U.S. Army.

After the war, a friend introduced Edward to Lila Mae Thomas (09Apr1900-02Oct1975). They were married on 03Apr1920 in San Jacinto County, Texas. Lila was born in Nacogdoches County, Texas and was the daughter of William Marion Thomas Jr. (01Jan1875-Aug1956) and Lena Cravey (06Sep1875-01Dec1947). William and Lena were married on 14Oct1896.

Edward did not have a birth certificate but needed one due to government requirements related to World War Two. He traveled to Collin County, Texas where his half-brother's wife, Minnie E. Massey swore to his birth date and place so that on Edward could receive his birth certificate on October 5, 1943.

Edward and Lila once lived at 4075 Congress Street in Beaumont, Texas.

Ed was one of the founding member of the Wigginsville Assembly of God Church in Wigginsville, Montgomery County, Texas (30°15'29"N at 95°20'13"W; next to Grangerland, Texas) and a Sunday School teacher for the adult class in the church for a period. There was even a portrait of him and a few other founders hanging in the entry of the church at one point, but no one can find the paintings anymore. A few remaining members of the church insist that the painting was of another founding member, but Ed's children, grandchildren, and great-grandson remember the painting.

He worked thirty-four years (ca1921-1955) at a Magnolia Petroleum Company oil refinery (now the Mobil Oil Company) and at one point was a pipe fitter. He also worked for the Criskoak Mfg. for a short time in Beaumont, Texas. He was a member of the United Workers Oil Company union.

According to his son Leveritt, Edward was "always about 200 pounds" and was a very strong man. His life was full of physical labor and he had large strong arms.

At the end of his life, he did not want Lila to have to sleep in the room where he may die. Ed had his bed moved to the parlor in their home and that is where he died on 03 Nov 1958.

Aunt Minnie wanted Edward to be buried at the Dry Creek Cemetery with their father, but Edward's wife and children buried his body at the Mims Cemetery in Conroe, Texas.

• 1920 Marriage Records in San Jacinto County, Book E, Page 199.
• Birth Records Volume 33, Page 214 in the Collin County, Texas.
• Massey Family Bible
• Interviews with Ed’s sons

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