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Fighting Two Wars at Once: The World War I Veterans of Quakertown

William Frederick "Zade" Jones


22 Sept 1895

Mineola, Wood, Texas


Allen Jones

Della Brown


Denton, Texas


Minnie Berry

Emma D Walker

Sarah Jean Powell


26 April 1972

William Frederick Jones was born in Mineola, Texas on September 22, 1895 to Allen Jones and Della Deckard.[1] By 1910, at the age of 14, he was living on Cooper Creek Road in Denton, Texas with his mother, two brothers, grandmother, an uncle, and one cousin.  Although he had not attended school in at least a year, he can read and write.  He was working as a laborer doing odd jobs.[2] 


By January 20, 1920 he was living on Vine Street (just outside the Quakertown boundaries) in a home he owned.  He was a widower and lived with his mother, grandmother, and other family members.  He was working as a laborer.[12]  However, we know from an article in the Dallas Express that by July 2, 1921 he was assisting BW Crawford as an undertaker, undoubtably using the skills and experience he had with the Grave Registration Service in France to help him acclimate to this profession.[13]

William attended the Gumpton-Jones School of Embalming in Nashville, Tennessee[14] and in November of 1922 he received his embalming license from the state of Texas.[15] BW Crawford, former resident and funeral home owner from Quakertown, had relocated to Kansas by this time.  There is no evidence that William Jones purchased his mortuary business, however, it is clear that he was the only black mortician left in the  community of Denton at this time. 

Because William’s home on Vine Street was outside the boundaries of Quakertown, he was able to keep ownership of this home during the forced relocation.  His mother, grandmother, and various other family members lived in that home until their deaths many years later.[16] 

William and his second wife Emma began purchasing land in the Solomon Hill subdivision where the “new” community of dislocated Quakertown residents were moved shortly after the announced relocation begins. His first purchase in this area is Lot 3 Block 6 in Solomon Hill.  He purchased this lot for $150 from BF Crawford.[17]  This lot becomes 1025 E. Hickory Street, the address of Citizen’s Undertaking.[18] At one point he owned seven properties in and around the Denton area, which made him one of the most financially successful citizens in Solomon Hill. [19] 

In the years between the relocation of Quakertown and his death William stepped up to become a community leader to fill the void that was left when many long-time residents left for other states rather than move to Solomon Hill.  An article in the Denton-Record Chronical entitled, “Class Hears Talk by Wm. F Jones” reported William being invited to talk about how to succeed in business with the graduating class at the Fred Moore School. He spoke to them about “honesty, reliability, trustworthiness, and the need for rendering service unselfishly.”[20] These are all values the Army emphasized and he carried with him into civilian life.  This speaking opportunity is a good example of the regard in which he was held by the community.  Another article, “Colored Scout Troop Organized”, listed William as one of the committee members.  This is just one example of his involvement with the community.[21] He also allowed a library for black children to be set up in the lobby of his funeral home,[22] was involved with the Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church, and was a member of both the American Woodman and Free Mason Lodges.[23]

William F Jones passed away April 26, 1972.  He is buried in the Oakwood Cemetery in Denton, Texas with a military headstone noting his WWI military service.[24]


[1] “Ancestry.Com - Texas, U.S., Death Certificates, 1903-1982,” accessed April 18, 2022,

[2] “Ancestry.Com - 1910 United States Federal Census,” accessed April 18, 2022,


[12] “Ancestry.Com - 1920 United States Federal Census,” accessed April 18, 2022,

[13] “The Dallas Express (Dallas, Tex.), Vol. 28, No. 39, Ed. 1 Saturday, July 2, 1921,” Newspaper, The Portal to Texas History (The Dallas Express Publishing Company, July 2, 1921), United States - Texas - Dallas County - Dallas,

[14] “Ancestry.Com - Texas, U.S., Death Certificates, 1903-1982.”

[15] “1922 Embalming License,” Denton County Clerk, accessed April 18, 2022,

[16] “Ancestry.Com - 1940 United States Federal Census,” accessed April 18, 2022,

[17] “Deed of Sale from Crawford to Jones,” accessed April 18, 2022,

[18] “Deed of Sale from Crawford to Jones.”

[19] “Divorce Filing with Listing of Assets,” accessed April 18, 2022,

[20] “William F Jones Speaks Fred Moore School,” Denton Record-Chronicle, March 21, 1957.

[21] “William F Jones and Boy Scouts,” Denton Record-Chronicle, February 8, 1938.

[22] DENTONPL, “Borrowing Books from the Undertaker,” Denton Public Library (blog), January 21, 2020,

[23] “William F Jones Obituary,” Denton Record-Chronicle, April 28, 1972.

[24] “William F. Jones (1895-1972) - Find a Grave Memorial,” accessed April 18, 2022,