W. F. Brooks, clerk and master of the chancery court of Henderson County. was born in the town where he now resides, in 1842; he is the youngest and only living one of a family of four children born to William and Margaret (McCauley) Brooks. The father was born in Newtonlavady, Ireland, in 1805. He emigrated from his native land in 1822 to Hardinsville, Middle Tenn., and began merchandising; in 1832 he moved to Lexington, continuing the sale of goods. In 1835 he visited the Emerald Isle and married Miss McCauley, who was born in Londonderry in 1811. They at once came to America. In 1860 they went on a visit to the scenes of their youth. After a mercantile life of thirty-four years in Henderson County, and one which was replete with success, Mr.. Brooks in 1865 turned his business over into the hands of the son, W. F. and December 31, of same year, died. His good wife's death occurred six weeks previous to his own. The subject of this sketch received an excellent education in the academy at Lexington, Andrew College, Trenton and West Tennessee College, Jackson. In 1860 he departed for Europe, making an extended visit of two years, seeing all the principal cities and curiosities of that country. He returned to America in 1862 and during the war remained in the Northern States; coming home in 1865. he assumed charge of his father's business, the next year entering into partnership with Saml. Howard and A. H. Rhodes in merchandising. Mr. Brooks was manager. He continued mercantile life until 1875, having different partners at various times, when he engaged in farming. Mr. Brooks has always affiliated with the Democratic party, casting his first vote for George B. McClellan; although the county has a Republican majority of over 300, Mr. Brooks is so highly regarded, popular and efficient, that he has held public offices for a period of fifteen years. In 1871 he was appointed deputy sheriff, serving two years; in 1876 he became deputy county court clerk, and served twenty-one months; in 1877 he was elected county superintendent of public instruction for two years; in 1879 he was appointed by Judge G. H. Nixon, clerk and master of chancery court, and in 1885 was reappointed to the same position. December 25, 1867, he married Miss M. .E. Covey, who was born in Henderson County, in 1847, and a daughter of A. K. Covey. Mr. and Mrs. Brooks are devoted members of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, in which Mr. Brooks has been an elder for six years. He is also a member of the A. O. U. W. Lodge, No. 32, of Lexington, and K. of H., Lodge No. 199, of Jackson.
Goodspeeds History of Tennessee