BOYKINS, EUWART GLADSTONE
BOYKINS, EUWART GLADSTONE (1898–1972). Euwart Gladstone Boykins, successful undertaker and philanthropist, was born to Mary J. Long on September 15, 1898, in Rockdale, Milam County, Texas. He and his mother moved to Temple in 1901 and later moved to Waco in 1912, where he attended public schools. In 1916 Boykins got his start in the funeral home business by working as an undertaker for Philips Undertaking Company. On November 18, 1920, he was granted an embalmers license by the state and bought one-half interest in the Jones & Arvis Undertaking Company which was subsequently changed to include his name.
In 1923 he bought out Jones and changed the name of the business to Boykins Funeral Home, and in 1924 he and Walter L. Dennis, former manager of Phillips Undertaking Company, formed a partnership known as Dennis & Boykins Undertakers. Boykin’s first location was on Bridge Street across from the Mecca drugstore, and he was very successful. He later renovated and moved across Bridge Street to a more suitable location.
Boykins married Pauline Quinn around the late 1920s; the couple did not have children. They “adopted” two nieces Edythe and Marjorie, whom they raised as their own. Boykins and his funeral home were a staple in the African-American community. During the Great Depression, he continued to offer funeral services to the public even though they did not have the money to pay him. His funeral home was popular because he cared about the African-American community and helped anyway he could.
Boykins wanted to improve the African-American community, so he sponsored a baseball team for young men. He was also active in the local YMCA. He was a member of Second Baptist Church, and when the congregation experienced financial trouble, Boykins bailed them out completely. E. G. Boykins died on March 11, 1972, at Temple Hospital in Bell County, Texas. He was buried in Greenwood Cemetery in Waco.
Andrew Webster Jackson, A Sure Foundation and a Sketch of Negro Life in Texas (Houston, 1940). Oral Memoirs of Edythe B.Heslip and Marjorie B. Pryor (http://www.baylor.edu/content/services/document.php?id=16290), accessed November 1, 2012. Waco News-Tribune, March 14, 2012.
Image Use Disclaimer
All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.
For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.Handbook of Texas Online, Keysha Schlotterbeck, "Boykins, Euwart Gladstone ," accessed August 30, 2016, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fbobk.
Uploaded on January 23, 2013. Modified on May 21, 2013. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.