Law, Francis Marion, Jr. (1877–1970)

Type: Biography

Published: 1976

Updated: May 3, 2017

Francis Marion Law, banker and civic leader, son of Francis Marion and Mary Jane (Howell) Law, was born on January 3, 1877, in Bryan, Texas. He received a B.S. degree from the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas (now Texas A&M University) in 1895 and was a law student at the University of Texas for one term, in 1896–97. He did not complete his study at the university, but worked as a bookkeeper (and later assistant cashier) at the First National Bank of Bryan from 1897 to 1908. He was employed as a cashier at the First National Bank in Beaumont from 1910 to 1915 and as an officer of the First National Bank (now First City National Bank) in Houston from 1915 until his retirement in 1955; he served that institution as vice president (1915–30), president (1930–45) and chairman of the board (beginning in 1945).

Law was elected president of the Texas Bankers Association in 1924 and president of the American Bankers Association in 1933. After the Bank Holiday of 1933 he spent much of his time in Washington, D.C., helping in the revision of the National Banking Act and in drafting a charter for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. During that time of slow economic recovery he sought a rapprochement of conservative bankers with the federal government, particularly with President Franklin D. Roosevelt, whom he presented to the American Bankers Association at their convention in Washington in 1934. Law served on the board of directors of Texas A&M from 1919 to 1947 and was chairman of that board from 1922 to 1944. He was president of the Houston Symphony Society, a director of the Houston Baptist Hospital, and a regent of the University of Houston; he was active in numerous Houston civic projects, including work in behalf of the Port of Houston. He was on the board of directors of several corporations, including the Burlington-Rock Island Railroad, the Maryland Casualty Company, the Pritchard Rice Milling Company, and the Mound Company. Law was a member of the Philosophical Society of Texas for thirty years. He was married to Frances Mann on April 20, 1898, and they had two children. He died at age ninety-three on June 2, 1970, in Houston and was buried in Glenwood Cemetery there.

Proceedings of the Philosophical Society of Texas, 1970. Cactus (student annual of the University of Texas, Austin), 1897. Who's Who in America, 1948–49.

  • Education
  • Board Members
Time Periods:
  • Progressive Era
  • Texas in the 1920s
  • Great Depression
  • Houston
  • Upper Gulf Coast
  • East Texas

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

Anonymous, “Law, Francis Marion, Jr.,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed June 28, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.

For more information go to:

If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

May 3, 2017

This entry belongs to the following Handbook Special Projects: