Angier, Eugene Luther (1870–1949)


By: Charles W. Monday and Jane Clements Monday

Type: Biography

Published: April 29, 2022

Updated: April 29, 2022


Eugene Luther Angier, Jr., physician, teacher, and community leader, was born on November 3, 1870, to Eugene Luther Angier, Sr., and Ida Jimmie (Hightower) Robertson Angier in a plantation home located seven miles west of Huntsville, Texas. The house was built by Eugene’s grandparents, Hardy and Harriet Hightower, in 1841. Eugene Angier, Sr., was a deputy county clerk of Walker County. He also served as worshipful grand master of Forrest Masonic Lodge No. 19. Eugene Jr. was one of six siblings that survived infancy. His twin brother, Horace Kendall Angier, died shortly after birth. His siblings were James Samuel Sr., Ida Catherine, Mary Elizabeth, Alonzo Prince, and Ezwoh Howze Angier.

Angier attended local schools and graduated from Huntsville High School. He attended Sam Houston Normal Institute (now Sam Houston State University) and earned a teacher’s certificate in May 1892. (In 1889 Eugene worked as a bricklayer and laid the first brick during construction of “Old Main,” the architectural symbol of the university that burned in 1982.) He taught school for two years in order to earn money to attend medical school. His first year-long teaching position took place in a one-room schoolhouse in Goshen (West Sandy), and his second year was in Corrigan. In 1894 he entered the University of Texas School of Medicine in Galveston, where he took classes within the landmark Ashbel Smith Building (“Old Red”). He completed his medical training in May 1897.

During his practice Angier developed a reputation for his ability to make accurate diagnoses along with his refusal to leave the bedside of a dying patient. Upon resuming his regular calls some patients were known to ask, “Doctor, did you lose a patient?” He also received letters of deep appreciation for his care from survivors of the early 1900s yellow fever epidemic.

As America entered World War I, Angier served as a medical examiner for local draftees. In 1918 he formally retired from medical practice after twenty-one years of service in Huntsville. He briefly emerged from retirement to lend his services during the influenza pandemic of 1918–19 (see EPIDEMIC DISEASES). Angier also served as a camp physician for the Boy and Girl Scouts of America (see BOY SCOUTS). By 1925 he was working as a physician for the Texas State Penitentiary at Huntsville. He was dismissed in 1929. The prison described him as “an able practitioner and operator.”

Angier was an active participant in many professional and civic organizations. He was a member of the Texas Medical Association, the American Medical Association, the Woodman of the World, the Texas State Fox Hunters Association, and the Texas University Ex-Students Association and was a charter member of the local Kiwanis Club and the Walker County Historical Society. He also served as president of the Sam Houston Normal Ex-Students Association and vice president of the Walker County Medical Society. He supported the Democratic party.

On May 1, 1907, he married Sarah Elizabeth Bohannon, and they divorced on March 24, 1915, having produced no children. On September 15, 1918, he married Nancy Lenora Bowden. The couple had two children: Eugene Luther Angier III and Mary Aline Angier. In 1919 Angier was informed by a Houston heart specialist that his life expectancy was six months or less. He died thirty years later on August 2, 1949, in Huntsville. He was buried in Oakwood Cemetery in Huntsville, Texas.

Huntsville Item, August 4, 11, 1949. Walker County Genealogical Society and Walker County Historical Commission, Walker County, Texas: A History (Dallas: Curtis Media Corporation, 1986).

Categories:
  • Education
  • Educators
  • Health and Medicine
  • Physicians and Surgeons
  • General Practitioners
Time Periods:
  • Late Nineteenth-Century Texas
  • Progressive Era
  • Great Depression
  • Texas in the 1920s
Places:
  • East Texas
  • East Central Texas
  • Huntsville

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

Charles W. Monday and Jane Clements Monday, “Angier, Eugene Luther,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed May 23, 2022, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/angier-eugene-luther.

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

April 29, 2022
April 29, 2022

This entry belongs to the following Handbook Special Projects: