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ELLETT, WILLIAM A. (1834–?). William A. Ellett, Texas legislator, was born in 1834 in Alabama to Dr. Ambrose King and Anne (Innes) Ellett. In 1839 the Ellett family moved to the area of Red River County, Texas, that would later become Bowie County. William A. Ellett studied law with Amos Morrill, J. J. Dickson, and J. A. N. Murray and was admitted to the state bar before November 1857. He relocated to Wise County and opened a law practice. On September 14, 1859, William A. Ellett married Thirza Reed; the couple had three children.

In August 1859 W. A. Ellett was elected to represent the counties of Wise, Jack, Denton, Montague, Collin, Cook, Young, Clay, Archer, and Throckmorton. He served through 1861 when he signed a public document advocating the rejection of the ordinance of secession. At the outbreak of the Civil War Ellet served as a lieutenant in a local militia company. After the war he was reelected to the state House of Representatives, and was defeated in a bid to become speaker of the House in 1873 by Marion DeKalb Taylor. W. A. Ellet was recorded as the head of a household in the 1880 census. William A. Ellett died in Red River County between 1880 and 1900.


William DeRyee and R. E. Moore, The Texas Album of the Eighth Legislature, 1860 (Austin: Miner, Lambert, and Perry, 1860). Journal of the House of Representatives of the State of Texas (, accessed March 17, 2008.

Jennifer Eckel

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The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Handbook of Texas Online, Jennifer Eckel, "Ellett, William A.," accessed November 19, 2017,

Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Modified on November 26, 2014. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.