Last Wednesday’s post by Thomas Rosell on Apartments on Jackson’s North Street commented on builder Tom B. Scott, who is credited in the MDAH database with three buildings in Jackson, followed by the intriguing question “Does anyone know more about Mr. Scott?” Readers’ comments added that he was one of four Scott brothers in the Woodland Hills neighborhood of Jackson, and newspaper research indicated he arrived in Jackson in 1928 working with the Jackson Land Company, and subsequently formed Tom B. Scott & Company, Contractors in 1930. It turns out that there is a lot more to the story of Tom B. Scott (and his brothers and their wives), and just enough holes in the stories in the Clarion-Ledger between 1921 and 1978 to make me wonder “where exactly did these people live?”
Tom B. Scott comes to Jackson
The Jackson Daily News mentions Tom B. Scott on December 10, 1921 in connection with the sale of land in the Hicks-Crisler Subdivision, with Charles C. Scott of Scott & Scott as the attorney. In 1924, the Clarion-Ledger reported the owners of Country Club Place had secured Tom B. Scott from Santa Monica, California as the new manager of the Jackson Development Company (Sept. 14, 1924, p. 6).
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Scott Welcomed to Jackson.
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Scott, who have been in California and points in the west for several years, are now making Jackson their place of residence and during the week will take possession of the home on the Clinton Boulevard formerly owned by Mrs. M. W. Curry. Mr. Charles Scott, who has been in the Bellenger home, will be with these new comers. Mr. Scott is associated in business with his brothers, Scott and Scott. Little Miss Sybil and Master Thomas, Jr., are the children of this happy family circle. (Clarion-Ledger, July 13, 1924)
The Jackson Development Company was established in 1923, with Dr. J. O. Segura as president, W. C. Wells, vice president, and Charles Scott, secretary-treasurer. Jackson Development Company purchased the property of Mrs. M. W. Curry on Clinton Boulevard for the development of what would become Country Club Place, described as
…the largest and most beautiful subdivision ever opened and offered to the people of the Capital City.
By 1926, Scott was building homes in a number of subdivisions, including Belhaven, and apparently opened his own company:
Tom B. Scott & Co. End Successful Year….built a large number of homes in Jackson during the past year…came to Jackson about two years ago…had experience in this business both in Wyoming and California. (Clarion-Ledger, January 17, 1926,p. 7)
Apparently in 1930, Jackson Development Company defaulted on payments to Mrs. Curry, and a portion of undeveloped Country Club Place was sold at auction (Clarion-Ledger, Dec. 13, 1930). The Jackson Development Company does not appear in local news after 1934.
The Scott Brothers in the Early Years
Frank T. Scott completed Millsaps College in 1914. He was an attorney and served as city judge and sheriff. In February 192?, he and his wife moved into the “splendid colonial home in Woodland Hills” off Old Canton Road near Fondren. Charles C., also an attorney, and his new wife moved into their new home in Woodland Hills in November 1928. Tom B. Scott and his wife were living in Country Club Place in 1928. Dr. W. W. Scott moved to Jackson in April 1928, and gave up his medical practice to become manager of the Jackson Baking Company plant at 519 S. President in July 1928. He re-opened his medical practice in January 1929 in the Century Building. By this time, Tom and his wife were living at 911 Euclid with their daughter Sybil and son Tom, Jr., but in January 1933 they moved into their new home at 1004 Euclid. The Clarion-Ledger Dec. 17, 1939 reported the Scotts sold their home at 1004 Euclid to William Young Westervelt, and described it as a 2-story white frame house. However, in 1941, and subsequently in all news articles, the Tom B. Scotts remained at 1004 Euclid.
Tom B. Scott continued to construct houses in a number of subdivisions, including Country Club Place and Belhaven, sometimes in association with builder J.R. Flint. He built the Bufkin Duplex in 1939 and the Isidore Lehman house off old Canton Road, designed by James T. Canizaro.
Among his commercial buildings (including renovations and alterations) were the W. G. Avery Body Company on Larson between High Street and Spengler, Millstein’s on Capitol and Farish, Dixie Glass Bottling Company, Ethredge-Hemphill-McGee Building at 520 E. Capitol, and Wright & Ferguson Funeral Home on West Street (now 350 High Street.)
Scott also did renovations and alterations on several schools, including Barr, Duling, Power, and Lanier High School.
On April 14, 1946, Tom B. Scott was elected Vice-President of the newly organized Associated Building Contractors of Mississippi. He died in 1978, according to a legal notice in the Clarion-Ledger by his son, Tom B. Scott, Jr., attorney handling the affairs of the deceased. I can find no obituary for Tom, Sr. or his wife, Lola Emery Scott.