Lawmen of Shelby County Memorial
Deputy - Shelby County
J. W. Jackson was born to Thomas Washington Jackson and Sarah
Ann Rachel Ridden on 26 March 1889 in Louisiana.
He married Ollie B. Ryans (Rhymes) March 26, 1911. They had
four children: James, Julius, Annie Bell and Ruby M.
James Walter was a Shelby County Deputy under Sheriff H. E.
Holt. On Thursday, May 5, 1927 he was on patrol and was getting out
of his car in front of his father’s store in Center, Texas when his
pistol fell to the running board, accidentally discharging and a
bullet pierced his stomach. He died on Monday morning, May 9, 1927
in the Center Sanitarium. He was 38 years old.
He, along with a Shelby County Constable, is on the Officers
Down Memorial Page website
www.odmp.org honoring them as officers killed in the line of
Constable - Timpson
Edward “Ed” Chapman was born November 27, 1878 in Shelby County to
James Chambers and Mary A. Stratford Chapman. He married Annis Ida
Prince and they had four children Edgar Levi, Ruth, Harrison Lovice
and Wiley Doyce.
Ed Chapman was Constable for
Timpson and died while on duty November 13, 1936 two days after
being wounded in a shooting at the Stockman School gymnasium, where
an Armistice Day dance was in progress.
Two people attending the dance
got into an argument and one of the men
knocked the other one down with a gun. The victim then went and
informed Constable Chapman and a justice of the peace what had
happened. The three then went back and found the suspect and
Constable Chapman asked him if he had a gun. The man said he did not
have a gun, but when asked again he suddenly produced a .38 caliber
revolver and shot Constable Chapman twice.
The suspect then shot and
killed the justice of the peace as Constable
Chapman returned fire,
killing the suspect.
Constable Chapman had been appointed constable only seven months
earlier when the previous constable had resigned.
John David “J.D.” Murphree was born September 6, 1930 in Shelby County to Ed
Murphree and Dovie Irish Murphree. He attended Center Schools graduating in 1950
from Center High School.
J.D. married Elora Mae Oswalt,
daughter of Wesley Oswalt and Rena Fleming Oswalt, July 1, 1950. He worked for
the City of Center and the Center Police Department. A good friend W. D. Lawler
encouraged J.D. to become a Texas Game Warden. He graduated from the 11th Texas
Game Warden Academy in 1958. He was stationed in Orange County. About 1961 he
returned to Center and worked Shelby County for two years, leaving and going
back to Orange County. Not long after returning back J.D. was killed by a Vidor
youth near Mauriceville December 8, 1963.
J.D Murphree’s name has been
enshrined in the National Police Hall of Fame. There is 8,400 acre wildlife
management area near Port Arthur that was named The J.D. Murphree Wildlife