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Milam County, Texas

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Leonard Isaacs


by Kathy Reed

Leonard Isaacs, son of Dr. Abram Conn Isaacs and Elizabeth Jane Hunnicut was born November 26, 1854 in Fayette County, Texas. Leonard first married Alice Brodnax who died in 1878. Leonard’s first wife died, as reported in the Galveston Daily News - Wed., 2 Oct. 1878, p.3, c.1. - "Cameron Sentinel: At Rockdale on Tuesday last, Mrs. Isaacs, wife of Leonard Isaacs, feeling indisposed, retired to her chamber and for the purpose of relieving her headache saturated a handkerchief with chloroform and spread it over her face and when an effort was made to awaken her, she was dead."

On December 7, 1880, Leonard Isaacs married Annie Letcher King in Milam County, Texas. Annie Letcher King, daughter of Kenneth Andrew King and Mary Elizabeth “Bettie” Letcher King, was born October 12, 1861 in Davilla, Milam County, Texas (also see Biography of Frank Bozeman King, her brother). Leonard and Annie had two sons, Burford King Isaacs, born September 23, 1883, in Milam County, Texas, and Conn Rufus Isaacs, born January 25, 1887, in Milam County, Texas.

Leonard Isaacs died August 11, 1932 in Rockdale, Milam County, Texas, as reported in the Rockdale Reporter and Messenger - Thursday, August 18, 1932, page 1 and 8, columns 6; 3 and 4 - "Funeral Is Held For L. Isaacs Here Friday – Death Comes to One of City’s Oldest Citizens Thursday. The death of Leonard Isaacs at his home in this city last Thursday evening removes from Rockdale one of her oldest and most highly respected citizens.

Following a partial stroke of paralysis in February, 1928, Mr. Isaacs had remained more or less of an invalid, and for the past year or more had been confined to his home. His condition gradually grew worse during the past several months, and his death had been expected for several weeks. He passed quietly away last Thursday at 8 p.m., surrounded by members of his family and faithful friends.

Funeral services were conducted at the family home at 5:30 p.m. Friday, by Rev. L. E. Strickland, pastor of the First Baptist church, assisted by Rev. J. A. Hall, a former pastor, of Waco. Friends from all sections of the county and from distant points were present in large numbers.

Following the religious services the remains were taken in charge by Rockdale Lodge, No. 414, A.F.&A.M.,and interment at the I.O.O.F. cemetery was under the beautiful Masonic ritual. The attendance of Masons was the largest that has been noted at a Masonic funeral in Rockdale in many years. Pall bearers were Messrs. E. H. Coffield, O. K. Phillips, H. G. Perry, B. W. Baldridge, Ed A. Swafford and W. E. Gaither.

Leonard Isaacs was a native Texan having been born in Fayette county, November 26, 1854. When but a lad, his father, the late Dr. A. C. Isaacs, moved to Milam county and established what came to be known as the Isaacs ranch, a few miles north of Rockdale. At one time this ranch embraced more than 6,000 acres, occupying most of that territory that now lies between the Rockdale-Minerva road and the San Gabriel river, a portion of which still remains in the family.

Upon the founding of the town of Rockdale in 1874 Dr. Isaacs moved to the new town and established his home and from the age of 20 years until his death 58 years later, Leonard Isaacs was a valued and prominent citizen. In the earlier days of the town’s history he was identified with its business interests, first with the mercantile firm of Tracy & Isaacs, later with the firm of Isaacs & Lockett, and with other enterprises. He was one of the original stockholders in the first waterworks and electric light company organized, and later acquired and conducted the industry for many years, disposing of this property to the city government and the Texas Power & Light Company less than twenty years ago. After retiring from this business he continued active in civic affairs, devoting his time to his farm properties and other personal business.

In his long and useful life Leonard Isaacs was ever identified with the religious, fraternal, social and civic activities of the community. He was one of the charter members of the First Baptist church and was a deacon for more than 25 years. He held the office of city secretary-treasurer for 25 or 30 years and it has been said of him that he never refused a call for duty in any matter that had a bearing on the best interests of his town. His father, Dr. A. C. Isaacs, was a charter member and the first Worspful Master of the local Masonic Lodge, and later Leonard Isaacs also served as Worshipful Master, and also as secretary of the order for a long period of years. P

The esteem in which he was held by his townsmen was reflected by the closing of all places of business for the funeral in response to a public proclamation issued by Mayor E. A. Camp.

Mr. Isaacs was twice married, the first time to Miss Alice Brodnax. Two children were born to this union; one a girl, who died in infancy; the other a son, L. B. Isaacs, now an attorney in Fort Worth. His second marriage was to Miss Annie King in 1880. Two sons, B. K. Isaacs, also a Fort Worth attorney, and Conn R. Isaacs, local banker, were the result of this union. He is survived by his wife, the three sons named, one full brother, Dr. Young Isaacs, and six half brothers and one half sister, as follows: Robert, Basil, Alan, Edgar, Weaver, and Irvine Isaacs, and Mrs. Lucinda Powers. P

Among the nearest relatives here for the funeral were Mr. and Mrs. M. C. Powers and daughter; Dr. and Mrs. Frank B. King and Mr. and Mrs. Maurice Sullivan and son; all of Houston; Messrs. And Mesdames L. B. and B. K. Isaacs, of Ft. Worth; Mrs. Ruth Tidwell and two children of Graham; Mrs. N. K. King, of Laredo; Mr. and Mrs. Roy Robertson, of Rosebud.

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Note: No newspaper or date of publication cite provided.

Leonard’s wife, Annie Letcher King Isaacs died July 2, 1946, in Houston, Texas. FUNERAL IS HELD HERE THURSDAY FOR MRS. ISAACS Well Known Woman Had Been Resident of Rockdale Since the Year 1880

Thursday afternoon at 3:00 o'clock final rites were held at the Phillips and Luckey chapel for Mrs. Leonard Isaacs who was returned to Rockdale on Wednesday following her passing that morning in a Houston hospital where she had been ill only a few days from a heart attack suffered while visiting in the home of friends.

A large gathering of local friends and relatives together with others from out of town assembled to pay their last tribute of love and respect. The casket rested in the chapel surrounded by embankments of a rare display of floral pieces large and small, elaborate and simple in delicate coloring of plant life.

The service was conducted by Rev. Jesse Garrett of Ft. Worth, a former favorite pastor of the First Baptist church here. It was just a little heart-to-heart talk in which briefly were extolled the virtues and Christianity of Mrs. Isaacs.

Special music was played by Mrs. L. W. Sledge a close friend and the solos were sung by Mrs. W. G. Harsha, past Worthy Matron, of Cameron, with whom Mrs. Isaacs had been associated in Order of Eastern Star work for some years.

Burial was made beside other members of the family at the I.O.O.F. cemetery. Following the brief graveside service a coverlet of flowers was placed over the newly made mound. Serving as casket attendants were H. H. Coffield, Jim Eads, W. E. Gaither, J. E. Dyer, W. C. Marrs, E. H. Coffield, and three friends of long standing who acted as honorary escorts were J. W. Garner, A. A. Offield, Dr. I. P. Sessions.

Annie King Isaacs was the eldest child of Dr. and Mrs. Kenneth A. King, born at Davilla, a community where a large contingent of pioneers settled and had contributed to the upbuilding and cultural life of this section. An only daughter of a family whose several sons were talented men of varied professions, she was the only survivor, her last brother Harry Tom King, attorney and statesman, having died at Abilene some months ago. She received her education at Davilla and at Salado which was then a leading college for culture.

Mrs. Isaacs, considered a young woman of striking beauty, was widely known as a belle of her day among social circles throughout this section. She came to Rockdale in 1880 as the bride of Leonard Isaacs, a young business man. During his life he was outstanding in church and business life of Rockdale and until resigning served as city secretary for thirty years. Mr. Isaacs died in 1932.

Through the years Mrs. Isaacs allied herself with the interest and influences favorable to the community and like her husband had been associated with the First Baptist church since the early days. She was a talented artist and until recently portrayed beautiful scenes with her brush. Years before garden clubs became popular Mrs. Isaacs promoted programs toward beautifying the city. She was a charter member of the oldest social organizations, the Scrap Book Club founded in 1900, took active part in the Cemetery Association, was one of the founders of the Rockdale Art League, and the Rockdale Garden Club. She stood high in Eastern Star circles developing through her great capacity for leadership numerous worthy achievements. She was the last charter member of the Rockdale Chapter, Order of Eastern Star, having helped organize and work faithfully with it at all times. She also organized chapters of O.E.S. in Cameron, Gause and Milano, and had received recognition for her efforts from high officials. She was a Past Worthy Matron of the local chapter and some years ago she called a group of women to her home from over the district and organized a Past Worthy Matrons Chapter of the district.

Mrs. Isaacs was one of the far-visioned social leaders of her time and belonged to that small group of women who clearly saw the future and were willing to do something about it. Since being established the Isaacs home was noted for its hospitality and especially were the young people welcome. Both Mr. and Mrs. Isaacs were friends to the youth and gave counsel to numbers who were left without parents. Many a worthy young relative or friend were taken into the home while preparing for the future and many there are who have returned to the home through the years to pay tribute to these two beloved people who befriended them.

Last fall Mrs. Isaacs left her home here to spend the winter and spring with a son and his family in Ft. Worth and in Dallas with a friend. The early part of June she went to Houston to visit in the home of Mrs. Toy Hinton, to whom she had been a mother, and had planned to return to Rockdale for the remainder of the summer. While there she reveled in the pleasures of being surrounded by relatives and former Rockdale friends who came to visit or to spend the day affairs.

It was only Friday before her passing on Wednesday that she suffered a heart attack which caused her death and prevented the return to her home which had been her castle.

There survive two sons, B.K. Isaacs of Ft. Worth, Conn R. Isaacs, Rockdale, a step-son, Leonard B. Isaacs of New Orleans whom she reared from a small child. There are five grandchildren, C.R. Isaacs, Jr. B. K. Isaacs Jr., Mrs. Wiley Clarkson, Mrs. Florese Neveille, Miss Elizabeth Isaacs, and one great grandchild, besides a large connection of relatives and intimate friends who had been in the home.

The following list were members of the family from out of town and relatives who were in the home of Mrs. Isaacs for the funeral service last Thursday.

Mr. and Mrs. B. K. Isaacs, Mr. and Mrs. B. K. Isaacs Jr., Mr. and Mrs. Wiley Clarkson, Mr. and Mrs. Harry Thatch all of Ft. Worth; Mrs. Lillian Carson Trotter, Mr. and Mrs. Horace Tidwell, Miss Joy Powers of Dallas; Mrs. Robert Isaacs, Miss Willie B. Isaacs of Georgetown; Mr. and Mrs. Frank DeWalch, Mr. and Mrs. James Lawler, Mrs. Toy Hinton, Mr. and Mrs. Vernon Frost, Mrs. Herman Detering, Mrs. M. J. Sullivan, Charlie Sullivan, all of Houston. Mrs. M. C. Powers, Rosebud, Mr. and Mrs. Roy Robertson, Mr. and Mrs. Joe Letcher Robertson, Mr. and Mrs. Edgar Isaacs, Mrs. Jane Walker, Sammy and Alice Walker, all of Waco; Mrs. J. H. Smilie, Mr. and Mrs. C. O. Wall, Mrs. Smilie of Rosebud, Mr. and Mrs. Irvin Isaacs of Austin, Mr. Alice Isaacs Hughs and daughter, Mrs. Hoyt of Hearne. Among the out of town friends were: Mrs. Graham Gillis, Mrs. W. E. Gaither, Mrs. E. A. Flinn, Mrs. E. G. Love, Mrs. Nellie Cox, Judge and Mrs. Jeff T. Kemp, Mr. and Mrs. Chas. Hicks, Mr. and Mrs. Ed Gunn, Mrs. Pearl M. Graves, Mrs. Irma Porter Kelly, Mr. and Mrs. Bill Alex Bonds, W. A. Robinson, A. R. McLerran, Mr. and Mrs. Chamberlain, Mr. and Mrs. Homer Nabours, all of Cameron, Mrs. W. G. Robertson, Mrs. D. U. Barry, Mrs. Judge Glass, Mrs. W. M. Cone and Mrs. Bardie Huddleson, Jessie Blankston, Mrs. Luella Newton Elam of Milano.

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