Members Only Area
Bookmark and Share


WHITE, CHARLES (1824–1905). Charles White, one of the earliest settlers of Odessa, Texas, was born at Woodville, North Carolina, on November 15, 1824, to Caleb and Mary White. His Quaker parents moved to Indiana, and Charles grew to manhood there. He married Lucy Haughton, daughter of William and Sarah Johnson Haughton, on May 24, 1852. They became the parents of six children, three of whom died in infancy. White moved to Odessa in 1887 from Raysville, Indiana. He built one of the first eleven houses in the city, helped establish the county government, operated a general mercantile store at what is now the corner of Third and Grant streets, and was perhaps the founder of agricultural effort in Ector County when he planted sorghum cane and cotton as well as an orchard of peach and pear trees on his property. The orchard and crops were irrigated with water piped from a wooden windmill into an earthen holding tank. As a result of being kicked by a horse, White died of peritonitus in Odessa on June 14, 1905, some few months short of his eighty-first birthday. He was buried in Odessa. His family moved to Mineral Wells in 1906. A son had his body disinterred later and moved to Mineral Wells to lie beside his wife Lucy.


Velma Barret and Oliver Hazel, Odessa: City of Dreams (San Antonio: Naylor, 1952). Odessa American, May 13, 1956, August 28, 1959. Wayne White, White Family Genealogy (MS, Ector County Historical Commission Archives, Odessa, Texas).

Bobbie Jean Klepper


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

Bobbie Jean Klepper, "WHITE, CHARLES," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed March 27, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Modified on September 29, 2013. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.