BIOGRAPHIES of HENDERSON COUNTY

Tillman Achilles & W.H. LANCASTER

T. A. and W. H. Lancaster were born in Hardin County, Tennessee, near Saltillo, and near the Sulphur Well. They are sons of Jesse L. and Susan E. Lancaster. The family moved to Decatur County during the sixties, and there remained, excepting two years when they lived in the State of Illinois, until 1895, at which time they moved to Lexington, where, in 1897, the mother died, and in 1898 the father died. These two boys were educated in the short term public schools of the County, and taught several years in said schools. T. A. attended the Academy at McKenzie several terms; and W. H. at Clifton and Decaturville. They both finished their literary education at the Southern University of Illinois, located at Carbondale, in 1885. They each taught school thereafter T. A. at Decaturville, one year, and then at Chattanooga three years; W. H. at Scott's Hill two years and one year at Sardis and two years at Chattanooga.

T. A. graduated from the Law school of Cumberland University in 1891, and began the practice of Law at Jackson with Judge S. J. Everett, but remained in Jackson only one year after which he formed a partnership with Judge John E. McCall at Lexington. There he was engaged in the practice until early in the year 1926, when he was appointed Federal District Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee. Judge McCall appointed him Referee-in-Bankruptcy, and he continued in said position until the death of Judge McCall, some years ago. On November 9, 1926, T. A. died at his home in Lexington. It has been generally said of him that he gave more pains and attention to his clients, and gave less offense to his adversaries than any lawyer in West Tennessee, and that he was the best and most proficient Referee West Tennessee ever had. It was his life practice to do the fair thing with every body, and he was held by the Bar as one of Tennessee's most eminent lawyers, and honored citizens. He gave much of his time to the promotion of the school interests of Lexington and Henderson County, serving as chairman of both the City and County Boards of Education for many years. Although he had no children, he loved children devotedly, and the cause of education with great ardor. He was elected to the Legislature from Henderson County, in 1902, served one term, and was then elected County Judge and served in that office six years, resigning to accept appointment as Referee-in-Bankruptcy . He was local Attorney for the N. C. & St. L. Railway for more than twenty years, giving up this connection when he was appointed Federal District Attorney. He was Presidential Elector on the Harrison ticket in 1888.

W. H. Lancaster resigned as principal of the McCaully Street High School in Chattanooga in June 1891, returned to his home in Decatur County, manufactured staves two years, then entered the mercantile business in Decatur County, and then at Lexington, where he had moved in 1897, and then in Jackson. He gave up the mercantile business in 1908, began the study of law, was admitted to the Bar in 1909, began the practice in January, 1910, and has since been in the practice, although he has many other matters in hand. He was Republican Elector for the Eighth Congressional District of Tennessee on the McKinley ticket, in 1896 and was such Elector for said District in 1928 on the Hoover ticket. Hoover carried the State by about 40,000 majority. When the Tennessee Electors assembled in Nashville in January 1929, W. H.·was made chairman of the board of Electors that cast the vote of Tennessee for President Hoover. He served as County Judge from September 1916 to September 1918, and upon the death of L. B. Johnson, was chosen County Judge for six months, until the next August election. T. A. & W. H. Lancaster have been connected with much of the litigation in the Courts, both State and Federal, in Henderson and adjoining counties, for many years. They each have had to do with almost all the big cases in the territory round about. They worked together loyally and were each to the other not only a brother in the true sense, but each, in a way, was father to the other, and W. H., the survivor, has no more fond recollections than of those wherein he and "Ack" were closely connected from boyhood on through the years, and no sadder than the death of his brother whom he loved as few men love others.

Auburn Powers 1930 History of Henderson County TN
Tennessee General Assembly Biography - Tillman Lancaster

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