Robert Quincy Lee, banker, railroad builder, and congressman, was born on January 12, 1869, near Coldwater, Mississippi, the son of J. A. and Mary (Sandidge) Lee. His father was born in Mississippi and was a descendant of the Lee family of Virginia. Mary Lee's father was J. W. Sandidge, who helped finance the completion of the Texas and Pacific Railway to Fort Worth in 1870. The Lees moved to Fort Worth in 1886, when Robert was seventeen; he attended public schools there. In 1891 he moved to Caddo in West Texas. At the time, Caddo was the center of a prosperous agricultural and cattle district, and Lee became a farmer, cattle raiser, and merchant and also served briefly as postmaster. In 1913 he moved to Cisco, where he became a leader in business and civic affairs. His businesses prospered from the oil boom of 1917 and the subsequent growth and expansion of Eastland and Stephens counties. His farming interests were also large and diversified. He became president of the Cisco Banking Company and helped build and finance a branch of the Cisco and Northeastern Railway from Cisco to Breckenridge. The line had the best of connections, including a reciprocal relationship with the Texas and Pacific and the Missouri, Kansas and Texas railways at Cisco. Lee was president of the Cisco and Northeastern from 1919 to 1927. He first married Ada Cook of Caddo, and the couple had three children. After Ada died, Lee married Clara E. Lee, of Memphis, Tennessee, and they had two children. Lee was a Baptist who contributed generously to Randolph College in Cisco. He served as president of the West Texas Chamber of Commerce in 1926–27. He was elected as a Democrat to the Seventy-first Congress in 1928 and served as a United States Representative from March 4, 1929, until his death from a stroke on April 18, 1930, in Washington, D.C. Lee was buried in the Carbon Restland Cemetery at Carbon.
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Buckley B. Paddock, History of Texas: Fort Worth and the Texas Northwest Edition (4 vols., Chicago: Lewis, 1922). Texas Biographical Dictionary (Wilmington, Delaware: American Historical Publications, 1985). West Texas Historical Association Year Book (1930).
Ranching and Cowboys
Activism and Social Reform
Patrons, Collectors, and Philanthropists
Ranchers and Cattlemen
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.
Jeanne F. Lively,
“Lee, Robert Quincy,”
Handbook of Texas Online,
accessed June 30, 2022,
Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Original Publication Date:
Most Recent Revision Date:
March 1, 1995