Henry, John Lane (1831–1907)

By: Cecil Harper, Jr.

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: January 1, 1995

John Lane Henry, lawyer, judge, and Confederate soldier, was born in Culpeper County, Virginia, on October 18, 1831. He attended Union University in Tennessee and moved in 1852 to Huntsville, Texas, where he read law in 1854 and was admitted to the bar in 1855. In 1856 he moved to Livingston and began a law practice. In 1860 he was elected district attorney for the Thirteenth Judicial District, and in December of that year he married Cornelia Jameson (Jamison) in Rutherford County, Tennessee. The couple had five children. In 1862 Henry joined Henry M. Elmer's Twentieth Texas Infantry regiment. He served in the Texas coast defense until the end of the Civil War. He moved to Tyler in 1869, and in 1870 he served as United States district attorney pro tem for the district court of the Western District of Texas. From 1871 to 1873 he represented Smith County in the Texas Senate. He was a delegate to the state Constitutional Convention of 1875, where he served as a member of the judiciary committee. He moved to the Dallas area in 1879 and was soon involved in the city government of East Dallas, a separately incorporated community, where he served two terms as mayor and one as alderman. In addition to his political activities, he maintained a highly successful law practice and served as a director of the Dallas and Wichita Railroad Company in 1885. In November 1888 he was appointed associate justice of the Texas Supreme Court, a position he held until 1893, when he resigned to return to his private law practice. Henry was active in the Dallas Bar Association and had been its president for several years at the time of his death. He died on October 21, 1907, and was buried in Greenwood Cemetery.

Dallas Morning News, October 22, 1907. Lewis E. Daniell, Personnel of the Texas State Government, with Sketches of Representative Men of Texas (Austin: City Printing, 1887; 3d ed., San Antonio: Maverick, 1892).
  • Law, Law Enforcement, and Outlaws
  • Lawyers
  • General Law
  • 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.

Cecil Harper, Jr., “Henry, John Lane,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed May 20, 2022, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/henry-john-lane.

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

January 1, 1995

This entry belongs to the following Handbook Special Projects: