Cadwell Walton Raines, historian and state librarian, son of Thomas A. and Aletha (McClendon) Raines, was born on September 18, 1839, in Upson County, Georgia. In 1858, after completing his junior year at Princeton, he moved to Texas and settled at Paris. He was admitted on trial by the East Texas Conference of the Methodist church in 1860. Though opposed to secession, he enlisted in 1861 under Richard M. Gano and served as a private throughout the Civil War. He was twice captured and escaped and twice wounded and reported dead. When offered a commission he refused because he did not want the responsibility of leading men into battle. After the war he taught school at New Braunfels, practiced law in partnership with J. J. Hill at Canton, was county judge of Van Zandt County, and published newspapers at Wills Point, Mineola, and finally at Quitman. During his residence in Quitman he was elected county judge of Wood County. The friendship of Raines and James Stephen Hogg, who also served as a Wood County official, was a lasting influence in their lives. When Hogg became governor in 1891, Raines was appointed librarian of the Texas State Library. He served in this post from May 5, 1891, to January 1895 and again from July 7, 1899, until his death. When he assumed office, the State Library was practically nonexistent, since little had been done for its rehabilitation after the old Capitol burned in 1881. Hogg took a particular interest in the library and supported an annual appropriation of $500 to enable the state librarian to collect Texas historical data. Under Raines the present invaluable collection of Texana was begun.
After being ousted from the position of state librarian by a new state administration, Raines devoted his time to scholarly work. In 1896 he published a Bibliography of Texas. His "Life of Antonio López de Santa Anna" appeared in the Texas Magazine (Austin, Dallas) from May 1896 to April 1898. To the Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association he contributed a number of articles. He wrote the introduction to The Laws of Texas in ten volumes, published by Karl H. P. N. Gammel (Austin, 1898), edited Six Decades in Texas or Memoirs of Francis Richard Lubbock (Austin 1900) and Speeches and State Papers of James Stephen Hogg, with a Sketch of His Life by C. W. Raines (Austin, 1905), and compiled Year Book for Texas (two volumes, Austin, 1902, 1903) and Analytical Index to the Laws of Texas, 1823–1905 (Austin, 1906). Raines was one of the founders of the Texas State Historical Association and a member of the Texas Academy of Science, John B. Hood Camp of Confederate Veterans, and Austin Lodge No. 12, A. F. and A. M. He was married twice: first to Mary Bowden of Nashville, Tennessee, on May 17, 1861, and after her death to Mrs. Isabella M. Mason of Amarillo, on December 25, 1901. He had four children. He died on August 2, 1906, and was buried at Round Rock.