Standifer, Jesse Marshall (1811–1881)

By: Brian Hart

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: December 3, 2020

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Jesse Marshall Standifer, United States Army surgeon, was born to Skelton and Lydia Echols Standifer in Eatonton, Georgia on September 27, 1811, and educated in Lexington, Kentucky. Sometime between 1837 and 1840 he moved to Shelby County, Texas, and practiced medicine with his father-in-law John E. Edwards until about 1848. In the winter of 1840 he married Eliza Panthea Edwards; the couple had three daughters. In 1848, he enlisted in the United States Army where he served as a captain and surgeon during the Mexican War and was honorably discharged on December 15, 1848. In June 1849 he joined a detail of officers and soldiers assigned to select a healthful location for a frontier post in Tarrant County. The site chosen was called Camp Worth and later Fort Worth. Maj. Ripley A. Arnold contracted with Standifer to serve as civilian post surgeon at the camp. During this time Standifer's family lived at Johnson's Station. After his wife died in December 1850, Standifer returned to Shelbyville, and on August 20, 1851, he married Caroline Mildred Edwards, his first wife's sister. The couple had seven children in addition to those from Standifer's first marriage. Standifer left his position as a surgeon with the army in 1854 and moved his family to Wise County, where he apparently operated a ranch and practiced medicine. He left Wise County and lived at Fort Belknap in Young County briefly around 1860, but returned to Wise for the remainder of his life. Standifer, a Mason, died at Garvin, Wise County, on August 1, 1881.

Julia Kathryn Garrett, Fort Worth: A Frontier Triumph (Austin: Encino, 1972). Rosalie Gregg, ed., Wise County History (Vol. 1, n.p: Nortex, 1975; Vol. 2, Austin: Eakin, 1982). Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.


  • Health and Medicine
  • Physicians and Surgeons
  • Military Physicians and Surgeons and Military Nurses
  • Military


  • Dallas/Fort Worth Region
  • Fort Worth
  • North Texas

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

Brian Hart, “Standifer, Jesse Marshall,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed September 21, 2021,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

December 3, 2020

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