Charles Ernest Wooten

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Back in 1893, the World’s Fair Edition of the Monroe Evening news, highlighted several businesses and businessmen of Monroe and West Monroe.  Among the businessmen profiled, was C.E. Wooten, a partner of Ivy Isaac Davis in the general store of Davis & Wooten.  He was 26 years old at the time. After his partnership with Davis ended, he graduated Tulane Law School in the May, 1899 class and was prominent in state politics.  He practiced law in Jennings, LA before becoming a state representative of Caldwell Parish.  He was a member of the Knights of Pythias and very prominent in social circles. After a career of selling dry goods, politics and law, Wooten went into business selling life insurance.  It was at this point in his career he would suffer a major fall from grace.

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According to the October 15, 1908 Vicksburg American, Deputy Sheriff T.A. Grant (who would later become Sheriff Grant) served a warrant on Wooten out of Grant parish.  There were seven charges against him.  He and two other men were taking insurance payments without turning them into the national office.  It was a clear case of embezzlement.  Wooten asked to go see a lawyer so he could get a bond.  Deputy Grant took him to his lawyer and politely waited outside in the hall.  Unfortunately, there was a door to the outside.  Wooten just kept on walking and never returned.  As far as I know, he was never seen again.  I’m sure it took a long time for deputy Grant to get over the embarrassment of loosing his prisoner!

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