This boy-child, born on May 4, 1916, was the eighth child to be born in the Elijah Shanklin/Beedie Frances (Archer) McClellan farmhouse in Hill Community, Coleman County, Texas! Like his siblings before him, Lester Archer McClellan attended Hill School and was attending Mozelle High School when he and Eunice Lee Rumfield decided to wed. Their wedding was on December 23, 1933, in the home of the pastor of the First Baptist Church of Coleman, Texas. They did not inform their parents of their plan to marry, but did depend on Lester’s older brother, Jack Beal McClellan, for lodging on their wedding night in the Coleman Hotel, where Jack was manager!
Lester Archer and Eunice Lee (Rumfield) McClellan lived with Elijah Shanklin and Beedie Frances (Archer) McClellan in the McClellan house on the farm in Hill Community for almost two years. While living with the elder McClellan’s, Eunice Lee (Rumfield) McClellan delivered their first child on November 11, 1934, a boy, who was named Billy Lynn McClellan. In 1935 Lester Archer and Eunice Lee(Rumfield) McClellan planned to move into a rent house which was on the Fenton Farm in February, 1935. They had begun painting and repairing the rent house, when another family rented it “out from under them” and moved into the house! Lester, Eunice, and little Billy had to find another place to rent! In fact, they moved four times during 1935 and 1936! They did find a place to rent near Brown’s Ranch and stayed there until 1940.
1940 was an important year for the Lester Archer/Eunice Lee (Rumfield) McClellan family. Lester Archer McClellan entered into a rental agreement with Mrs. Ballard, of Coleman, Texas to rent her farm north of Coleman, Texas, near Lake Scarbrough, in Coleman County, Texas and moved his family, consisting of wife Eunice Lee, sons, Billy Lynn, age 6, Charles Lester, age 4 ½, and daughter, Carolyn, age 1 into the Ballard farm house. Also, this was the year that Lester began repairing electrical appliances for Gray’s Mercantile Store in Coleman, Texas. Customers would leave their appliances at Gray’s Mercantile for Lester to pick up for repair. He would bring the appliances to the house on the Ballard farm, where he and Eunice dedicated the “back bedroom” as his workshop. When he had made the repairs, he would return the appliances to Gray’s Mercantile for the customers to pick up their repaired appliances. His business grew so that Mr. Cecil Gray, owner of Gray’s Mercantile, built an upstairs workshop for the business that became known as “McClellan’s Radio and TV Shop.”
In 1942, Lester Archer McClellan enrolled in the National Radio Institute of Radio and Television correspondence course which he completed in 1943 and received a certificate of completion of the course. Lester Archer McClellan continued to farm and work at Gray’s Mercantile even after 1949 when his rental agreement was not renewed and he had to find a new place to live. He found a farm to rent in far eastern Coleman County on the Brown/Coleman County line, in the Liberty Community, called the Duggan Farm. This was not a happy move for Eunice Lee (Rumfield) McClellan, his wife, for she had to move into a “barracks” that had been partitioned into a three-room residence.(The barracks had been purchased from the World War II military installation in Brownwood, Texas, named Camp Bowie and moved to the Duggan Farm to house the renters.) Lester Archer McClellan did continue to work at Gray’s Mercantile in Coleman, Texas, as well as farm the Duggan Farm in the Liberty Community, about 20 miles East of Coleman. At some time after completing his studies in radio and television course, it is reported that he told Mr. Cecil Gray that he had to learn to work on television’s, so I need a TV. Lester brought to his “barracks home” a new Hoffman television set, reportedly the first television set in Coleman County, Texas!
In 1959, Lester Archer McClellan retired from farming and he and Eunice Lee (Rumfield) McClellan moved into Coleman, Texas where he continued to install television antenna towers, and sell/repair radios and televisions at Gray’s Mercantile until 1982. In 1982, Lester Archer and Eunice Lee (Rumfield) McClellan moved into the house at 713 Commercial Avenue where they lived until their deaths: Eunice Lee (Rumfield) McClellan died August 13, 1998 and Lester Archer McClellan died November 25, 2005.