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The Marston Sutphen Family

Marston Sutphen was born May 17, 1881 in Wyoming, son of Martin Van Dyke Sutphen and Ella Marston. He was in Texas by 1900, and is on the 1900 census in Thurber Town, Erath County. He was 19 years old, living in a boarding house, and working as an assistant Auditor.

Marston’s father, Martin, was the son of Ralph Sutfin (born about 1813, died 14 Mar 1864) and Margaritt Crego. Martin was also the father of Minnie Leora Sutphin by Mary Elizabeth Harris Sutphin.

Ella Marston was the daughter of Rev. Sylvester W. Marston, a Baptist minister who also served as Superintendent of Sunday Schools for the Missouri Baptist General Association. Later he was appointed by President Ulysses S. Grant to be the United States Agent for the Indian Territory. William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri, named Marston Hall after him.

In 1900, Thurber was a “company town,” everything was owned by the Texas & Pacific Coal Company. Marston’s uncle, Edgar Marston, worked for T&P.

"The Thurber coal miners' strike of 1903, which ended when a contract was signed by John L Lewis and Edgar L. Marston (for Texas & Pacific) in the old Worth Hotel in Fort Worth, was the beginning of the labor movement in the southwest." (

Edgar Marston eventually became President of T&P Coal Company in 1915. He succeeded Col. Robert Hunter, his father-in-law.

Marston Sutphen married Lady Swan Jordan in 1906. Swan was born in Texas on April 18, 1886, daughter of James Alvin Jordan and Blanche Way.

The 1910 census shows Marston and Swan in Precinct 1, Comanche Town, Comanche County, Texas. Marston is a bookkeeper in a department store.

Between 1910 and 1918, Swan and Marston had four children: Jordan, Mark, Margaret, and an infant son who was born prematurely and did not survive. He is buried in Mt. Olivet Cemetery in Ft. Worth, Texas. The family lived at 2004 College Ave. in Ft. Worth at the time of his death in 1917.

Swan Jordan Sutphen died of encephalitis in Ft. Worth on April 5, 1921 and was buried in Mt Olivet Cemetery. The family was living at 3618 Avenue H in Polytechnic, Tarrant County, Texas.

Polytechnic Heights is located on the southeast side of Ft. Worth, and was named for Polytechnic University, now Wesleyan University. It was an independent suburb until 1922, when it was annexed by the city of Ft. Worth.

Marston Sutphen may have died shortly after his wife, but no death record has been found. The 1930 census shows Jordan, Mark, and Margaret living with their aunt Wren Jordan Howard, her husband Robert, and their children Richard and Helen. They are still in the house at 3618 Avenue H in Fort Worth, so it seems likely that Wren and her family moved into Marston’s house after his death. Wren was still living in the house when she died in 1974.

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