Lorance, McDonald (1823–1884)

By: Aragorn Storm Miller

Type: Biography

Published: August 27, 2008

McDonald Lorance, farmer, Confederate soldier, county official, and state representative, was born in Smith County, Tennessee, on February 22, 1823, the son of Hiram and Martha T. (Abernathy) Lorance. Lorance immigrated to Texas with his father in 1844, settling in Smith County and engaging as a farmer. When Tyler was established in Smith County in 1846, Lorance became the first mayor of the city. On February 24, 1853, Lorance married Mary E. Raspberry in this county; they had one son and two daughters. On the eve of the Civil War Lorance opposed secession, but once hostilities commenced he enlisted in the Confederate Army. Following the war Lorance returned to Smith County.

With the onset of Reconstruction in 1867, he assumed a leading role in the moderate Republican faction of the community. Lorance won election in 1870 as representative for Smith County to the Twelfth Texas Legislature and in October of that year won a second term as mayor for Tyler. He was elected county treasurer in both 1878 and 1882. During this time he was relatively prosperous, expanding his estate to include $3,160 in personal and real estate property. Lorance died in Smith County on September 19, 1884, and was buried there at Oakwood Cemetery.

Cemetery Records of Smith County, Texas (Tyler: East Texas Genealogical Society, 1981). City of Tyler, "Past, Present, Future…Annual Budget 2006–2007" (http://www.cityoftyler.org), accessed June 25, 2007. L. M. Green, History of Smith County (Tyler, Texas: (n.p.), 1918). Sidney S. Johnson, Some Biographies of Old Settlers (Tyler, Texas: Sidney S. Johnson, 1900). Sidney S. Johnson, Texans Who Wore the Gray (Tyler, Texas: Sidney S. Johnson, 1907). IGI Individual Record: "McDonald or Mack Lorance" (http://www.familysearch.org), accessed June 25, 2007. Smith County, Texas, Marriages (Tyler, Texas: The East Texas Genealogical Society, 1979).


  • Fourteenth Legislature (1874-1875)
  • House

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

Aragorn Storm Miller, “Lorance, McDonald,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed October 17, 2021, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/lorance-mcdonald.

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

August 27, 2008