Digital Collections

Fowler Family Papers



Letter to Missouri M. Porter.
May 3, 1838.


Letter from Nathan Bangs. 
July 1, 1837.

deed of sale

Nacogdoches, Texas
Deed of Sale.
November 7, 1837.


Receipt from Kyle & Love.
October 19, 1841.

Letter from Robert Paine.
October 24, 1842.


Letter from H.D. Bigham.
May 25, 1838.

About the Collection

Holding library: Bridwell Library

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This collection comprises personal letters, legal documents, and business records created or collected by Methodist minister Rev. Littleton Fowler (1803–1846), his wife, Missouri M. Porter Fowler (1807–1891), their son, Rev. Littleton M. Fowler (1841–1917), Mrs. Fowler’s third husband, Rev. John C. Woolam (1813–1894), and descendants. Rev. Littleton Fowler arrived in Texas in 1837 as one of three ministers officially appointed to organize the Texas Mission of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

Littleton Fowler (1803–1846) was born in Smith County, Tennessee. In 1806 the Fowler family relocated to Caldwell County, Kentucky. At the age of sixteen Fowler joined the Methodist Episcopal Church. Seven years later, in 1826, he was admitted to the Kentucky Conference, receiving his deacon’s orders in 1828 and his elder’s orders in 1830. In 1832 Rev. Fowler joined the Tennessee Conference, where he served as financial agent of La Grange College between 1833 and 1837.

Fowler was one of three missionaries commissioned by the Methodist Episcopal Church to the Republic of Texas in 1837. During 1838 and 1839 he served as Superintendent of Methodism in the Republic. Fowler was then appointed Presiding Elder of the Eastern District of the Missouri Conference (1840), the San Augustine District of the Texas Conference (1841), the Lake Soda District of the Texas Conference (1843–1844), and the Sabine District of the Texas Conference (1845). At the denominational level Fowler was a delegate to the historic Methodist Episcopal Church general conference of 1844 and the organizing convention of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, that followed in 1845.

Littleton Fowler married Mrs. Missouri M. Lockwood Porter on June 21, 1838, at Nacogdoches, Texas. They had two children: Mary and Littleton Morris Fowler. Mary Fowler married Professor G. M. L. Smith. Like his father, Littleton Morris Fowler became a Methodist minister in Texas.

Missouri M. Lockwood (1807–1891) was born in Louisiana. She married Dr. J. J. Porter in 1825, and the couple moved to Nacogdoches, Texas, where Dr. Porter died tragically in 1836. Her second marriage, to Rev. Littleton Fowler, lasted from 1838 until his death in January 1846. In 1849 Missouri Porter Fowler married another Methodist minister, Rev. John C. Woolam. At her death in 1891, Mrs. Woolam was hailed as the “sainted matriarch of the East Texas Conference.”

A finding aid is available at Texas Archival Resources Online. For more information about the Fowler Family Papers, please contact Bridwell Library Special Collections.


Please cite Bridwell Library Special Collections, SMU, as the source of this collection. A high-resolution version of manuscripts in this collection, may be obtained by contacting Special Collections (