Thomas Price Caldwell ’33

Thomas Price Caldwell ’33, a longtime Hattiesburg, Miss., resident and retired attorney for Exxon, died Sept. 18, 2012, at Provision Living, where he had been a resident for three years. He died two days after celebrating his 100th birthday in the company of most of his family and a great many of his friends and fellow residents. Caldwell was born in Yazoo City, Miss., Sept. 16, 1912, the second son and fourth child of Dr. and Mrs. William James Caldwell, D.D. His father was the minister of the First Presbyterian Church of Yazoo City from 1911 to 1945.

Caldwell earned his B.A. from Davidson in 1933 and a law degree from the Jefferson School of Law in Louisville, Ky., which later merged with the University of Louisville School of Law. Later, he earned additional law credits at the University of Michigan. After serving as a law clerk for Judge Holmes of the 5th Circuit Court in New Orleans for five years, he joined Humble Oil Company, later Exxon-Mobil, in Hattiesburg, and became expert in the field of lease law. He also served as a consultant for the company in New Orleans between 1961 and 1975. He was a member of the Mississippi Bar Association and over the years provided much of the language of the Mississippi code in the field of lease law.

He was well known as a golfer and once held the course record at Hattiesburg Country Club. He boasted five holes-in-one during his career and was awarded a plaque for a “memorable round,” having shot 78 over 18 holes at the age of 91. He was also known as a raconteur and wit. Everyone who heard him speak or read his letters knew him to be in love with words, and his ability to quote lines of poetry from Shakespeare and Tennyson was legendary. His wife, Helen Frances Clay, died in 2006.

He is survived by six children, Thomas Price Caldwell, Jr. ’62 (Alice Carol), 403 Gillespie St., Starkville, MS 39759, William Clay Caldwell (Livia), Delia Brown (Wayne), Jane Caldwell Rose (Jack), Margaret Elizabeth Preus (John), and Anne Avent Caldwell Schloemer (Doug). He also had 16 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren. He always said his greatest accomplishment was his family.