1887 William Elisha Hodges

Birth: 28 Jan 1887 in Englewood, Kansas, USA
Death: 10 Jan 1972 in San Diego, California, USA

William Elisha Hodges, or “Buster,” as his children and grandchildren called him, was the baby of his family. His parents had migrated from Kentucky where his siblings were born to Kansas where he was born. His mother, Nancy Louisa Hawkins, died when he was nine. Then his father, James L. Hodges, died when he was just fifteen.

A lawsuit was brought by James L. Hodges over a piece of land acquired during the Oklahoma land rush. James died before the case was decided in the Supreme Court in Washington, so the results were given in the name of the children as heirs of the case. This Supreme Court decision binds W. E. Hodges with his siblings from Kentucky.

One of Buster’s sons told the story of how his dad survived in the his orphan years. He lived with a man who ran a tavern. Buster, who was small anyway, would sit behind the counter with a bottle of whiskey and a six-shooter. His guardian would tap one shoulder for him to pour a drink or the other shoulder to hand him the gun. It was life in a territorial frontier.

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