Shurtleff family gathers for annual reunion

Text: T T

Mary Eubanks Voss and Jene Steakley, the eldest daughter and eldest grandchild of Fay Shurtleff Eubanks, were honored at this year’s reunion. Mary Eubanks Voss and Jene Steakley, the eldest daughter and eldest grandchild of Fay Shurtleff Eubanks, were honored at this year’s reunion. The descendants of W.W. and Eletha Birdie “Ma” Shurtleff gathered June 12 to celebrate 104 years since the Shurtleffs established their homestead in Lampasas County.

The 17th annual reunion was at the Adamsville Community Center with more than 80 family members and friends in attendance.

The original Shurtleff homestead is still in the family, with the second- through fifth-generations coming home to celebrate their roots in Lampasas County.

Mary Fay Shurtleff Eubanks (1898-1993), the second child born to W.W. and Ma Shurtleff, was honored at this year’s reunion. She was a born teacher, and the impact she made on many lives was a highlight of the celebration.

She and her husband, Carl Eubanks, lived many years in Gatesville where former students still fondly think of her.

The couple had four daughters, Mary Voss, Billie Short, Bobbie Steakley and Martha McCoy. The two surviving daughters, Mary and Billie, told stories of their mother, and seven of her eight grandchildren also spoke.

Following a lunch of barbecue, fried chicken, homemade sides and desserts, the family participated in a silent auction organized by Sheryl and Bobby Dunlap. Proceeds will benefit future reunions.

A panoramic group photo was also made at this time.

Later in the afternoon family and friends enjoyed swimming in Sims Creek on the Shurtleff place, and in the evening, the family gathered at Robert and Mary Shurtleff’s home close to the site of the original homestead. The group enjoyed a hot dog and marshmallow roast at sunset.

Billy Joe and Lois Piper provided homemade peach ice cream. They are descendents of the neighbor family, the Will Pipers, who lived next to the Shurtleff land.

Descendents of W.W. and Ma Shurtleff attended the reunion. The couple had two daughters and five sons. Descendents of the eldest daughter, Fay Shurtleff Eubanks and husband, Carl, in attendance were Mary Eubanks Voss of Gatesville; Billie Eubanks Short and Susan Short Harrison, and husband, Bo, twin sons Cullen and Ryan, and Cullen’s friend, Megan, all of Wimberley; Heather Harrison Harton and her husband, Matt, of Lampasas; Sheryl Short Dunlap and husband, Bobby, and Melissa Dunlap Buchanan, husband Jeff, and daughter, Brooklyn, all of Waco; Zollie Steakley and his fiance’, Michelle, of Sweetwater; and Scarlett Steakley of Austin.

Also attending the reunion were Jene Steakley and wife, Elaine, of Snyder, and Amy Steakley Boyer and husband, Brad, and son, Luke, of Friendswood; and Dan Steakley and wife, Patti, Stephen Steakley and wife, Alyson, Will Steakley, wife, Karen, and Stella, and Ashley Steakley Kim and husband, Benedict, all of Austin.

Others were Margaret McCoy Sargent, Jill Sargent Sapp and husband, James, and sons, Andrew and Henry, and daughter, Margaret Ellen, all of Arlington; Lauren Sargent Cooley and husband, Bo, and daughters Mia, Georgia and Evelyn, all of San Antonio; Mike McCoy, Michael McCoy and Magan McCoy of Lampasas; and Stephanie McCoy of Austin.

Descendents of Sam and Dicie Shurtleff were unable to attend this year.

Robert O. Shurtleff and his wife, Ethel, had descendents in attendance. They were Robert T. Shurtleff and wife, Mary, from Adamsville (living on the original Shurtleff farm), and Tom Shurtleff and wife, Kami, daughters, Rylee and Taylor, of Ada, Okla; and Hunter Shurtleff and wife, Lynn, and daughter Megan, and son, Ryan of College Station.

Descendents of T.C. Shurtleff and wife, Eileen, were in attendance. Mrs. Shurtleff was unable to attend. Others in attendance included Carolyn Shurtleff Perkins and husband, Jimmie, and son, Damon Perkins and wife, Connie, and Hollie Chambers Smith, husband, Dustin, and son, Xi, all of Lampasas; David Perkins and son, Kodie, and friend Ashley Cullen, daughter, Brytlyn of Austin; and Amie Chambers of Fort Worth.

Descendents of Fern Shurtleff Townsen and husband, Luther, were not able to attend.

The family plans to gather again June 13, 2011, to celebrate 105 years of family at the homestead. The family will present a special tribute to the memory of secondborn son, Samuel Hillyard Shurtleff.

Any friends who would like to share a memory of Sam Shurtleff may contact Robert T. Shurtleff at 768-3403 or Margaret Sargent at

2010-07-09 / Life

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