Lane, Jonathan (1853–1916)

By: David S. Walkup

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: May 2, 2017

Jonathan Lane, state senator and attorney, was born near Decatur, Alabama, on October 15, 1853, the son of Charles Joseph and Ellen (Crockett) Lane. His father was a Methodist minister, and his mother was a niece of David Crockett. The family moved to Fayette County, Texas, when Jonathan was eighteen months old. Lane received his education from private schools there, took up the study of law in 1880 while he was working in a mercantile store, and in 1882 was admitted to the state bar. In November 1886 he was elected to the state Senate by a 1,500-vote majority. He served Fayette, Bastrop, and Lee counties in the Twentieth and Twenty-first legislatures (1887–89). He gained fame as a strong antiprohibition speaker. In 1888 he helped organize the First National Bank of La Grange. He moved to Houston in 1899 and joined the law firm that eventually became Lane, Wolters, and Storey. In Houston he held the presidency of various business firms such as the Cane Belt Railroad Company, the American Surety and Casualty Company, the Guarantee Life Insurance Company, and the Continental Trust Company. He was also a director of the Union National Bank and the Bankers Trust Company. Lane City, Wharton County, was established by the Cane Belt in 1901 and named for Jonathan Lane. He was a member of the Democratic party and served as chairman of its state convention in 1892. He was a Shriner, Mason, Knight Templar, Knight of Pythias, and Methodist. He married Alma Harrison on December 29, 1876; they had a daughter who died in Houston about 1906 and an adopted son. Lane died at Port Aransas on May 27, 1916, and was buried in the Flatonia City Cemetery.

Houston Post, May 28, 1916. Frank Lotto, Fayette County: Her History and Her People (Schulenburg, Texas: Sticker Steam Press, 1902; rpt., Austin: University of Texas Press, 1981).

  • Law, Law Enforcement, and Outlaws
  • Lawyers
  • General Law
  • Twentieth Legislature (1887-1888)
  • Twenty-first Legislature (1889)
  • Senate
Time Periods:
  • Late Nineteenth-Century Texas
  • Progressive Era
  • Houston
  • Upper Gulf Coast
  • East Texas

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

David S. Walkup, “Lane, Jonathan,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed July 05, 2022,

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May 2, 2017

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