Additions, corrections, comments, complaints and compliments concerning this page should be submitted to Betty Miller and Betty Phillips.
Is one of the old settlers of Van Zandt county. His father moved here from Talediga county, Ala and arrived November 26, 1850. The father was a neighbor to the family in Alabama, so that D. L. and J. L. M. Curry were born near together the latter of course, being much older but the families were intimate and much regard is yet entertained for the Currys by Mr. Riley and all his brothers. Mr. Riley was born in the Alabama home July 27, 1846 and for further (sic) information concerning his family see sketch of A. J. Riley in this issue. It will be seen from above that he was four years of age when the family came to Van Zandt county. He is therefore practically a native as his life has been spent in the county. When they came, the country was sparcely (sic) settled. The Edom country and the northeastern portion of the county were settled early and a few scattering settlements were found elsewhere Mr. Hambrick was probably the first slave holder in the county and settled in the Edom country in an early day. The country was filled with game and wild cattle and was new and had all the elements of a frontier. The was came at a time to interfere with the education of young David but he made the very best use of the opportunities he had and has continued to be student all the years since. He is educated in the highest and best sense, has a good knowledge of things and is a thinker. He grew to manhood in the county and in 1866 Aug. 26, married Miss Mary Hobbs who was related to the Hobbs family who also came to Texas early. Six children were born to this union all of whom are living and are devoted, in a special degree to the interests and happiness of the father, Sept. 13, 1879 his wife died. Oct. 31, 1880, he married Miss Nannie Thompson who still survives. They have five children living, two dead. She was also an Alabamaian (sic) and came to Texas in early life. Mr. Riley has been a uniformly successful business man, and attributes his success to special application and rigid economy. Mr. Riley says no man can succeed as a merchant without special study of his line and continued thought. He embarked in business in Canton in 1873, in drugs. In 1878 having sold his former business established himself again in drugs but in 1880 sold it again and embarked in the general merchandise business and has uninterruptedly gone forward in it ever since. He is probably the 2nd merchant in age now doing business in the county who has had no serious breaks or reverses. He made merchandising the business of his life and gave it his attention and the best powers of his mind and body and thus became one of the reputed small per cent of merchants who ultimately succeed. He is the head of the D. L. Riley Co. now having his sons interested with him, and they carry a full line of general merchandise and is growing in volume and results all the while. He has been a writer for the press all along and some of his contributions have attracted wide attention and contain much merit and display more than ordinary talent in this line. Mr. Claud Riley, who is active in the management of the business assisting his father has a family and is also giving his best energies to the business. Mr. Riley is gentle, decided, commanding, yet conservative and sympathetic. He is a baptist (sic) and has given much time to his church work. Is useful in his town and county.