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By Barney Green

My father, Morris F. Green, was born in Lafayette, Louisiana, on April 9, 1882. He was the second oldest in a family of ten children born to Mr. and Mrs. Joe Green. Not much is known about them since both of them died before M. F. Green was married. About all that is known by any of us about Joe Green and his wife is that he came down to Louisiana from the North after the Civil War, and his wife was a native of Louisiana, of Creole French descent.

Morris F. Green became a permanent resident of Nederland about 1909. He came by way of a boat to Port Arthur with the rest of his family. They were fleeing a hurricane at Johnson's Bayou, which had wiped out their farm. He had been to Texas on previous occasions. One time, he came as a volunteer to help clean up Galveston after the 1900 hurricane there. He had also come here after the Lucas gusher came in near Beaumont and he worked there for a while as a roughneck. His memories of that period were of wagons travelling to and from Spindletop all night long. Also he told of the fledgling oil companies stealing oil and everything else from each other, even of stealing boilers still hot from the fires that had been in them.

After coming here in 1909, he continued to work in the oil fields and to help his parents get their farm started again after it was destroyed by the hurricane of 1900. He also worked for rice farmers in the Nederland area. He became known as one of the few area men who could work well with a yoke of oxen. Dad always said that oxen were better for plowing in muddy ground. They were stronger than either horses or mules, but they were a lot more stubborn.

One of the things that the people of that early period feared most was a cattle drive by an area rancher. If a person had any loose cattle on the prairie, that rancher's cow hands would veer to the right or left in order to pick up the loose cattle on the prairie and get them into their herd. Whenever the rancher would acquire new property, the first thing he would do was put up posted signs. The standard joke of that period was that nobody had to worry about "going to hell," because that rancher was down there and he already had all of Hell posted.

Morris F. Green continued to take care of his parents until they were both dead before he gave any thought to marrying or acquiring a permanent residence of his own. That was about 1919. He bought three lots in the 600 block of Eleventh Street in the Burson Addition, and he built his home there.

In 1921 he married Myrtle Kennedy of Carriere, Mississippi. He was already 39 years old at that time. The four children that were born of that marriage were Raymond Morris Green, born on January 11, 1923; Barney Lee Green, born on August 24, 1926; Ruby Joyce Green, born on February 20, 1933, and Peggy Jean Green, born on March 21, 1937.

Morris F. Green continued to live on Eleventh Street during all the years he worked for Sun Oil Company. He retired from there in 1952 at the age of 70. He died on April 15, 1968, at the age of 86. My mother, Myrtle Green, died on April 4th, 1970, at the age of 70.

Copyright 1998-2016 by W. T. Block. All rights reserved.
Unless otherwise indicated, the material published on this site is copyrighted by William T. Block.
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