Jessie P. Chastun Family
Jessie P. Chastun came to Texas in early 1880
and found work on the Railroad.
In 1884, he married Mary Jane Paull a young
English emigrant, at the Peach Creek Section House, between Wharton
and Hungerford. At that time the railroad was known as the New York,
Texas, and Mexican Railway, and it ran from Rosenberg and Victoria.
When Jessie and Mary Jane Chastuns first child
Mittie Dillard was born in 1886, they were living at the Section
House in Kempner, Lampasas County and Jessie was working for the
Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railway. While he continued working in
Kempner a son James Patrick Henry Chastun was born in 1889 in Sealy,
while Mary Jane attended her father's funeral.
By 1900, Jessie and Mary Jane were living in
Goliad County, at the Fannin Section house and they had three more
girls, Agnes Sarah, Mary Beatrice, and Jessie Harriett.
On November 12, 1904; Jessie P. Chastun and
wife Mary Jane Chastun bought 99-3/4 acres of farm land, from Eliza
Kempner. This became the home place
for the Chastuns and their family from then on. This plot was the
Northwest corner of the Austin Perry League, and a portion that was
inherited by Moses Austin Bryan who inherited his land from his
mother Emily Austin Perry. Mr. Bryan was one of three sons of
Emily Austin Perry who divided this league after their motherís
death. One can only speculate that Jessie was involved in the
construction of the railroad spur from Wharton to Van Vleck, about
the time that the New York, Texas and Mexican Railway and Southern
Pacific merged. How else would Jessie found such a remote area from
Goliad County? In 1904, the Chastun Family was the only white family
living in Ashwood.
Jessie and Mary Jane had four more children
born in Ashwood. Marguerite Rosalie in 1902, Thomas Joseph in 1909,
Marion Paull in 1907 and Jessie Lucille in 1911.
Jessie Harriett died as an infant at Fannin and
was buried in Victoria. Thomas and Jessie Lucille died as infants
and were buried in the family cemetery established next to there
home in Ashwood.
Marion Paull would live to be 14 years of age
before her unfortunate death, a horse riding accident, took her life
and it was decided to bury her at Cedarvale Cemetery in Bay City,
Matagorda County, Texas.
The remaining children were raised in Ashwood
and married either there or in Bay City. Mittie married Anton
Hansen, Agnes married Fred Gernand, James married Ann Muth, Mary
married George Walker and Marguerite married Clyde DeRoche. James
would later move to Bryan, Texas and Marguerite to Bay City. The
other three girls lived in Ashwood the remainder of their lives.
Jessie Chastun died in Ashwood, 1 December 1936
and Mary Jane died 14 December 1938 after a brief illness in the
Wharton Hospital. Both are buried at Cedarvale Cemetery in Bay City,