From the Garland Local History & Genealogical Society, Volume 1- Number 1, October 1972


Author:                  Unknown

James Wesley Raines, his wife, Sarah (Allen) Raines, and four young children came to Garland, Texas, iin 1874 from Tennessee.

James was born in 1843 in Cocke County, Tennessee.  He was the son of James Raines and Mary (Jones) Simmons Raines of that county.  All available records indicate this Raines family came into Tennessee from North Carolina.

The name "RAINES" (spelled RAINS also) is Celtic and is found in United States records as early as the 1600's.

Sara Allen, wife of James Wesley Raines, was born in 1845 in Cocke County, Tennessee, and was a daughter of John Allen and Sarah (McNabb) Allen.  The Allen family can be traced back to the early 1700's in Virginia.

Two or more of Sara (Allen) Raines' brothers followed this family to Garland as well as James Raines' brother, Thomas A. Raines, and his two sisters, Amanda (Raines) Edwards and Nancy (Raines) Roberts.  All of the above families settled for a time in Garland and several remained there the balance of their lives.

James Wesley Raines fought as a Confederate from East Tennessee in the Civil War along with his father who was 52 years old when he enlisted.  James Wesley Raines and Sarah Allen were married in 1864 in Cocke County, Tennessee.  The 1870 census of Tennessee found this couple living in Giles County, Tennessee where they made a brief stop before coming to Garland in 1874.

Dallas County, Texas, land deeds show James Raines as having owned several farms in the Garland vicinity; however, the family settled on a farm which is the present site of Space Corporation on Shiloh Road.  Three more children were born to James and Sarah while living there.

The seven children of James and Sara (Allen) Raines were Fannie, born 1868 in Tennessee; Louis Franklin, born 1869 in Tennessee; Walter, (see later) born in 1871 in Tennessee; Mary (Raines) Penneybaker, born 1873 in Tennessee; Thomas Wiley, born 1876 in Garland, Texas; William Virgil, born 1878 in Garland, Texas, and John R. Raines, born 1881 in Garland, Texas.

Walter Raines (cited above), married Martha Izella Goforth in Dallas County, Texas in 1893.  izella is the daughter of Samuel Goforth and Catherine (Capps) Goforth and the granddaughter of John Goforth and Elizabeth (Boothe) Goforth, all of Tennessee.  Samuel and Catherine Goforth moved with their children to Garland in 1884 from Bradley County, Tennessee.

Walter Raines and Martha Izella (Goforth) Raines were the parents of only one child, a son, Oscar H. Raines, who was born in 1894.

Oscar H. Raines married Winnie Davis in Dallas County, Texas, in 1915.  Winnie Davis being the daughter of Walter C. Davis and Susie Aldora (Wynn) Davis.

Walter C. Davis was the son of Archibald Davis and Martha (Newton) Davis who came to Texas from Georgia after 1870.  They settled in the community of Smithfield, Texas, in Tarrant County.

Susie Aldora Wynn was the daughter of Henry A. Wynn and Ann Elizabeth (Conoway) Wynn and the granddaughter of Thomas Wynn and Nancy (Heath) Wynn of Warren County, Georgia.  Henry A. Wynn brought his family to the Garland area from Georgia in 1881.

The children of Oscar H. Raines and Winnie (Davis) Raines are Fredna; W. C.; Glen; Doris; Bill; and Don.  Five of these still reside in Garland,  Don Raines being the present mayor of the city.

James Wesley Raines' family belonged to the Antioch Baptist Church of Garland, Texas.  A son, William Virgil Raines, was licensed to preach in this church in 1898.

James died in 1891 and is buried in the Old Garland Cemetery (sometimes called the Masonic Cemetery) on Miller Road.

The following two articles appeared in the Garland News following his death in 1891:


James W. Rains was born in Cocke County, Tennessee on July 23, 1843; was married to Sarah Allen on July 3, 1864; moved to Texas in 1874.  Since that time he has lived in the Garland neighborhood.  He had been afflicted for two years previous to his death, and suffered a great deal.  He was conscious up to the time of his death and requested his wife and children to meet him in heaven.  He told his boys to keep good company and stay with their mother.  It seemed that leaving his wife alone was all that he cared for.

Since it is God's will to take our brother, we feel that our loss is his gain.  He leaves a wife and five sons and one married daughter to mourn his loss, besides a host of friends.  To the bereaved family, we would say, weep not, for he left evidence that he died in the triumphs of the Christian religion. He cannot come to you, but you can go to him and be reunited in a better and brighter world above.


Mr. J. W. Rains died at his home two miles west of Garland on last Sunday about 3 o'clock.  He was buried under the auspices of the Odd Fellow Lodge of which he was an honored member.

Mr. Rains was an upright and highly esteemed citizen, an exemplary Christian man, and expressed himself as being perfectly willing to die, as he expected to go to a brighter and better world.  He leaves a wife and several children, most of whom are grown up.  They are well-provided for, as Mr. Rains leaves a good farm and plenty of stock and was free from debt.

(Note:  "Rains" spelling used in articles but his tombstone bears the spelling as "Raines".)