Jasper Goodwill

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Jasper Goodwill

In office
1955  1958
Preceded by John T. David
Succeeded by Frank T. Norman

Born November 18, 1889(1889-11-18)
Minden, Webster Parish, Louisiana, USA
Died November 10, 1974 (aged 84)
Minden, Louisiana
Nationality American
Political party Democratic Party
Spouse Annie Eldredge Goodwill
Children Marion Jasper Goodwill
Gloria Goodwill
Robert Eldredge Goodwill
Occupation Businessman
Religion Methodist
(1) Businessman Goodwill was a transitional mayor between the longer terms of John T. David and Frank T. Norman; having won a special election, Goodwill did not seek a full four-year term in 1958. (2) Despite his brief service, Goodwill led the implementation of health insurance and pension coverage for municipal employees.
Jasper Goodwill (November 18, 1889November 10, 1974) served from 19551958 as the Democratic mayor of the small city of Minden, the seat of Webster Parish in northwestern Louisiana. He was the mayor who implemented health insurance and a pension plan for municipal employees.
Goodwill prevailed in a
special election on May 10, 1955, to fill the remaining three years in the term of John T. David, who resigned amid scandal after nine years in the position. Goodwill defeated Paul Wallace, a furniture store operator and a former member of the Minden City Council, 944 (52.4 percent) to 858 (47.6 percent).[1]
Minden Mayor Jasper Goodwill crowns Earlene Mendenhall, later Earlene Lyle, as "Miss Minden" in 1956.
David had also narrowly defeated Wallace in the regular Democratic
primary in 1954. Goodwill did not seek a full term in the 1958 primary, which brought Democrat Frank T. Norman, a sitting council member, to the mayor's chair for the first of two four-year terms.
Goodwill was one of five children born to Alfred Jasper Goodwill (father's year of birth: 1855) and the former Sallie Fort. Goodwill's paternal grandfather,
Confederate Captain Alfred Goodwill, who maintained a large general store in downtown Minden, was first married, until her death, to a grandmother of former Louisiana Governor Murphy J. "Mike" Foster, Jr. Goodwill Road in Minden is named for Captain Goodwill, Mayor Goodwill's grandfather.[2]
Jasper Goodwill graduated from
Minden High School, probably in 1906. When he entered the United States Army during World War I, he had no middle name. The Army required at least a middle initial, and he was assigned a "K", which stood otherwise for nothing. He remained in the United States throughout the war.[3] An older brother, Christopher Goodwill (1867-1901), was shot to death while making an arrest. Ralph Goodwill, another brother, was the co-owner of a clothing store in Minden known as Brown-Goodwill.[2]
Grave of former Mayor Jasper Goodwill in Minden Cemetery in Minden, Louisiana
Goodwill was assistant
postmaster in Minden from after his military service until 1923, when joined the staff of Empire Southern Gas Company, having retired as the manager in 1954. He and his younger son, Robert Eldredge Goodwill (born June 21, 1928),[4] started a hardware and sporting goods store on Broadway Street in 1952, which closed in 1978.[1]Goodwill was married to the former Annie Eldredge (July 2, 1889June 18, 1959), a medical secretary originally from Abbeville, the seat of Vermilion Parish in south Louisiana. In addition to Robert, who resides in Minden, the couple had an older son, Marion Jasper Goodwill (born January 2, 1925)[4] of Shreveport. Daughter Gloria died a few months into infancy. The couple also had four grandchildren and were affiliated with First Methodist Church in Minden.[3] They are interred in Minden Cemetery.[5]
Preceded by
John T. David
Mayor of Minden, Louisiana Jasper Goodwill

Succeeded by
Frank T. Norman



  1.  a b Minden Herald, May 12, 1955, p. 1
  2.  a b John Agan, "Captain Alfred Goodwill's Descendant (Murphy J. Foster, Jr.) Makes News", Minden Press-Herald, November 3, 1995
  3. a b Statement of Robert Eldredge Goodwill of Minden, Louisiana, October 6, 2008
  4. a b Net Detective, People Search
  5. Minden Cemetery gravesite

Submitted by Billy  Hathorn, Class of 1966