Henry Edward and Lillian Mae (Foster) Hixson
Henry Edward "Ed" Hixson was born October 7, 1883 in Mountain View, Arkansas. He attended the common schools of Mountain View and in due time attended the local high school. After putting his textbooks aside he began teaching in the rural schools of the county and at Big Flat, where he met his future wife, Lillian Foster, who was one of his students. He also taught at Jamestown and for some time he was principal of the school at Lexington, Stone County, Arkansas. In all he engaged in educational work for seven years. At the termination of that time he entered the mercantile business and became associated with the H.J. Patterson, the firm operating under the name of Stone County Mercantile Company. After two years in the partnership, Ed Hixson sold his interest and in 1913 bought the Ozark Times. Later he consolidated it with the Stone County Record. W.H. Nelson (his uncle) became his partner. In 1914 Ed bought his partner's interest. "The policies," according to a book called Centennial History of Arkansas, "of the paper were democratic and this paper has done much to further the interest of the party in the county. It was published weekly and has a circulation of some seven hundred. Mr. Hixson does job printing also. He is a man of varied business interest being part owner of the Sands & Company Mercantile Store in Mountain View and also of the Gem of Ozark a moving picture theater." Ed eventually sold the paper in Mountain View and moved to Newport to start a new one. This venture was not prosperous so he sold out and went to work for the Batesville Guard. Later he moved back to Mountain View and bought the Mountain View Herald.
On the 30th of April, 1911, Ed Hixson married Lillian Mae Foster, who was born December 17, 1890, in Big Flat, Arkansas. Ed and Lillian lived for each other. Ed was quoted as calling Lillian a queen on more than one occasion. Lillian played the piano and her favorite song was Whispering Hope. "Mrs. Hixson," says the Centennial History of Arkansas, "is a woman of culture and refinement and she takes an active interest in the club and social affairs of this community." A sign of the times - Lillian's advise on sex when Inez got married was this: "If you get pregnant before your period, you have a boy. If you get pregnant after your period you have a girl." Ed and Lillian were both members of the Methodist Episcopal Church and took an active part in the church work.
To their union one child, Inez, was born on January 9, 1913 in Mountain View, Arkansas.
Lillian died of liver cancer that started from breast cancer on October 10, 1943, in Mountain View, Arkansas. During the time she was sick, Inez would get extra ration stamps (as it was during World War I and gas was rationed) from the taxi company. The gas man would also give her 2-3 gallons per stamp which was illegal. These generous things made it possible for her to visit during this difficult time. Lillian is buried in the Mountain View Cemetery.
Ed owned 40 acres of forests outside Mountain View. He would jug up water from a spring. After Lillian's death, he sold the house in town and went up and built two cabins out on this land that they called Kahoka. Inez and the granddaughters saw less of him after that.
Ed remarried a second time to a woman he met through writing letters in a lonely hearts club. She was a college instructor in Tennessee. They were divorced after a short time as she wasn't inclined to stay home and cook as he was used to. He married a third time, a Rosa B. McClaire Williams, whom he had known before he met Lillian.
Politically Ed gave his allegiance to the democratic party, having firm belief in the principles of that party as factors in good government. He was at one time mayor of Mountain View. Fraternally, he was identified with the Independent Order of the Odd Fellows, being secretary of the local lodge, and he was also affiliated with the Modern Woodmen of America, in which organization he as an escort . Also he was a member of the Klu Klux Klan, a fact he tried to hide from most people. In the line of his newpaper work he was a member in the National Press Association and the Arkansas Press Association. Centennial History of Arkansas says, "Mr. Hixson is one of Mountain View's most public-spirited and representative citizens and there is no movement for general development and improvement that seeks his aid in vain. He is one of the substantial citizens of Mountain View and Stone County is proud to number him among his native sons. The high and honorable interest have won for him the confidence and respect of his fellowmen and Mountain View is indeed fortunate in having him for a citizen."
Here are a few personal stories told of Ed Hixson. Mary Hawkins Presley says one of her most vivid memories was, "He would tell us to sit down and listen to the editorials on the radio. He was a very strong willed man. He would read editorials to us from the Gazette." Linda Hawkins Muse says she remembers him teaching the granddaughters to eat biscuits with syrup poured in a hole made in the center. Red-eye gravy was another favorite. Inez Hixson Hawkins tells on a number of times he would take them fishing, driving the Chrysler down a steep rock road. Then the car would get stuck and they'd have to wait on a farmer and a tem of mules to pull them out. Ed was an avid hunter. One of his favorite (although not to Inez) dishes was squirrel and dumplings. Inez says that Ed had one favorite of each type of food and that's all he'd eat. Puffed wheat was this favorite cereal.
Ed Hixson died on July 28, 1957 in Mountain View, Arkansas, and is buried next to his wife, Lillian, in the Mountain View Cemetery. His name is misspelled (Hixon) on his tombstone and Inez says he would turn over in his grave if he knew as he was very proud of the way his name was spelled.
Centennial History of Arkansas - Dallas T. Herdon Publ. 1922
Personal conversations and interviews
Henry Hixson and Lillian Foster Hixson's Marriage Certificate
Henry Hixson and Lillian Foster Hixson's Death Certificates
Henry Hixson and Lillian Foster Hixson's Tombstones
Henry Hixson and Lillian Foster Hixson's Family Photos