English, Clarence T. (1902–1941)

By: Sarah Jane English

Type: Biography

Published: January 1, 1995

Updated: September 12, 2019

Clarence T. English, businessman, the son of Oscar Butcher and Sarah Jane (Mooney) English and great-grandson of Rev. James English, was born in Commerce, Texas, on April 17, 1902. Clarence lived with his family, which included twelve brothers and sisters, on a farm where cattle, cotton, and wheat were raised. He attended Overland School, near Brashear, and the University of Texas in Austin, where he earned a teaching certificate in 1920. He became a teacher and school principal when he was eighteen years old. Clarence married Myra Childress on July 14, 1929, in a Ford tri-motored monoplane flying over Dallas-an event well-covered by the local newspapers-before leaving on a honeymoon cruise to Havana.

He and his brothers Henry and Manzy were pioneers in the transportation industry in Texas. Clarence was the general manager of Red Ball Motor Coach Company and, in keeping with his love for all forms of transportation, had his own private plane. He owned a stock farm with horses and enjoyed leading the opening processions at rodeos on his favorite palomino, as well as hunting trips on horseback in Colorado and Wyoming. English was featured in "Men of Dallas in Pen and Ink" by Jack Moranz in the Dallas Morning News on January 20, 1937. He was a Mason, a Shriner, a Knight Templar, and a member of the Dallas Chamber of Commerce, the Community Chest, and Highland Park Presbyterian Church. He was president of the English Freight Company and secretary and treasurer of Air Line Motor Coaches, Incorporated, which operated buses in Texas and Louisiana. He started in his freight business in 1933 with one small truck and built it to a fleet of 108 trucks by 1937. He was in the bus business by 1926, when he organized the Southern Bus Owners Association, which arranged and scheduled passage, operations, and tickets. He began insuring operators in 1927. He was a member of the Common Carrier Motor Freight Association and the Southwestern Tariff Bureau. By 1939 his company had a fleet of 200 trucks operating in Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arizona, and California. English instituted fair labor practices with his workers, a measure that kept the company viable during difficult times and the freight delivered on time.

The Englishes had two daughters and a son. Clarence died in Dallas on April 24, 1941, after an automobile accident and was buried at Restland Cemetery in Dallas. In 1943 the English Freight Company hauled vital World War II supplies under the direction of his widow, then company president. Mrs. English, who was born in McKinney, Texas, on December 28, 1900, died in Dallas in April 1959 and is buried at Restland beside Clarence.

  • North Texas
  • Dallas/Fort Worth Region
  • Dallas

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

Sarah Jane English, “English, Clarence T.,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed June 30, 2022, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/english-clarence-t.

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

January 1, 1995
September 12, 2019

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