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J Eldon Doughty Biography

submitted by his son Joe Doughty

 

Joseph Eldon Doughty was born March 8, 1917 in Manifest, Louisiana.
He was the 2nd son of a family of 7 children born to Rev. Millard Thompson Doughty & Gussie May Wright. He attended school at Manifest school where he graduated the 11th grade in 1934.

Eldon joined the Navel Air Force as a student pilot. He was stationed in Jacksonville, Florida and received a medical discharge just prior to World War II. Eldon moved back to Manifest and attended Louisiana College. While in College he worked to help support himself. He was a sales clerk in a men's clothing store, he worked in the Louisiana College Cafeteria, and he also worked for building and grounds. All of the large pine trees around the Louisiana College circle drive were planted by Eldon. During the summer he would come home and raise a crop of Cotton & Corn to help supply more income for school. He graduated Louisiana College in May, 1947, with a bachelors degree in Education.
He began teaching at Enterprise High School in the fall of 1947 and in January 1948 he was named Principal of Jonesville
Elementary School. On May 22, 1948 he married Edith Monk, who was the Home Demonstration Agent for Louisiana State University in Catahoula Parish.

They had three children; Rissa Mae Doughty,October 18, 1949; Deborah Dee Doughty, September 21, 1952; and
Joseph Eldon Doughty, Jr., January 4, 1957.

In the fall of 1948 Eldon was named Principal of Manifest Elementary School where he stayed until 1953 when he moved
to Pitkin High School to become Principal. That same year the Paper Mill at Elizabeth went on strike and Eldon's life was threatened three times so he resigned at Pitkin because his life was more important than a job.

The family moved to Jena where Edith became Home- Demonstration Agent for LaSalle Parish. An old friend called Eldon and told him of an opening at a school in Olla. Eldon applied for the job and got it. He taught school in Olla for 1/2 year until the fall of 1955 when he was again named Principal of Manifest Elementary School. At Manifest, he was Principal, Basketball Coach, & 8th grade teacher. In the summer months he measured cotton in Catahoula Parish to help supplement his family's income. In 1969, he was named Assistant Principal of Martin Junior High School in Sicily Island, where his tenure lasted only two weeks. At this time he was chosen to become Principal of Harrisonburg High School, at the beginning of integration. He stayed at HHS until his retirement in 1976 and was instrumental in the construction of the New Harrisonburg High School on the Manifest Highway.

After his retirement he worked for several years as a farmers assistant to his good friend Slim Christiansen, who farmed on the Jonesville/Harrisonburg highway. He always raised a large garden, providing food for the family members he loved so much. He enjoyed hunting and fishing and was in the woods up in his tree stand or on the water in his boat as much as possible. He built a tree stand in Brooks Brake Hunting Club near Ferriday, and it became a landmark and was nicknamed "Eldons' Hotel Stand" because it had walls, a tin roof and a swivel seat. It was the most unique tree stand because you
could sit up in it and stay warm, dry and swivel 360 degrees. Now these type of tree stands are very common among deer hunters. They are called box stands and Eldon apparently built the first one ever. If he could have only got a patent!

In 1980 he became an area coordinator for the U. S. Census Bureau and was very instrumental in the census count of
Catahoula parish.

Eldon was a member of the Masonic Lodge #194 in Harrisonburg and was master of the lodge many times. He also served
as District Deputy Grand Master and was very involved in the Louisiana Masonic Lodge. In 1969 he became a member of the Scottish Rite of Monroe receiving the 33rd degree.

In 1965 Eldon became a member of Kappa Delta Phi, an honorary educational fraternity. He was also selected to be a member of the Red Red Rose Association, an honorary educational organization.

In 1956 Eldon was ordained a Deacon of Pisgah Baptist Church in Manifest. In 1986 he was licensed to preach the gospel by the First Baptist Church of Jonesville, and on September 28, 1986 he was ordained as a minister of the gospel and served at Mt. Hermon Baptist Church who had called him as their pastor.

He died of a massive heart attack on Christmas night, December 25, 1986, and was remembered by a large number of relatives, friends and co- workers, who attended his funeral. He is buried in the Richardson Cemetery in Jena.


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