Crowell, Chester Theodore (1888–1941)

By: Aly Clyburn

Type: Biography

Published: June 1, 1995

Chester T. Crowell, newspaperman and writer, was born on October 14, 1888, in Cleveland, Ohio, to William Theodore and Adelaide (Chichester) Crowell. The family moved to Texas while he was a young boy. He attended public schools in Beaumont, Houston, and San Antonio, won a writing contest, and was recognized by the San Antonio Express. The paper offered him a job as soon as he graduated from high school. In 1907 Crowell moved to Mexico City to become the managing editor for the Mexican Herald. At the time, he had difficulty understanding and communicating in Spanish, yet by the time he left Mexico in 1909 he was translating and writing fluently in both English and Spanish. Upon returning to San Antonio, Crowell once again worked for the Express, this time as an editorial writer. In 1911 he became managing editor for the Austin American-Statesman, where he remained until 1916, when he became a staff correspondent for the Dallas News for a year. In 1923 he became an editorial writer for the New York Evening Post. From this time until his death in 1941, he did free-lance writing. In 1924 Crowell was awarded the O. Henry Short Story Award for his short story "Margaret Blake." Another story, "Ruth," was included in a book of the world's 100 best. Yet another of his short stories was published in the O'Brien collection of 1924, entitled The Twenty Best Stories of the Year. Crowell was a member of the Authors League of America. He was also a Democrat and paid careful attention to politics. When he moved to Washington, he was appointed special assistant to the secretary of the treasury. After resigning from this position, he wrote Recovery Unlimited: The Monetary Policy of the Roosevelt Administration (1936), one of his best-known books. Crowell first married in 1911. He and his wife, Mary Frances (Beaulac), had five children. On October 24, 1937, Crowell married Evelyn Miller Pierce, a Dallas-born writer and the daughter of Lieutenant Governor Barry Miller. Their marriage was a short one, for Crowell died on December 27, 1941. He was buried in Washington.

Sam Hanna Acheson, Herbert P. Gambrell, Mary Carter Toomey, and Alex M. Acheson, Jr., Texian Who's Who, Vol. 1 (Dallas: Texian, 1937). Dallas Morning News, December 27, 1941. Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin. Who's Who in America, 1934–35.
  • Journalism
  • Newspapers
  • Editors and Reporters
  • Writers, Authors, Publications, and Literature
  • Literature
  • Dramatists and Novelists
  • Fiction

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

Aly Clyburn, “Crowell, Chester Theodore,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed June 30, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

June 1, 1995