Monday, September 12, 2011

Carlos G. Stratton (1900-1967)

Attorney, Humanitarian, Author
Born April 4, 1900, Louisville, Kentucky
Died September 16, 1967, Los Angeles, California

Carlos Gordon Stratton was born on April 4, 1900, in Louisville, Kentucky, the only child of a pair of Hoosiers. His father, Don Carlos Stratton, was born in June 1869 when the memory of the Civil War was still fresh. It's likely that Don C. Stratton was named for the Union general, Don Carlos Buell, who lived in Indiana before the beginning of the war. Carlos Gordon Stratton, then, was named for his father and his mother, and perhaps indirectly for a Civil War hero.

The Stratton family moved from Kentucky to Colorado sometime between 1900 and 1910, when the census taker found them in Las Animas. By 1920, they were in Denver. Carlos Stratton served as a private in the Student Army Training Corps (S.A.T.C.) in Denver during World War I. He went on to graduate from the University of Denver in 1922 and the Denver Law School in 1925.

Stratton practiced patent law in Denver and wrote for Dicta, a journal of the Denver Bar Association. According to a family member, Stratton met with great success as a lawyer in Denver and retired to Mexico to take up writing. One result may have been his lone story for Weird Tales, "A Pair of Mummies," from March 1925. 

By 1930, Stratton was back in Denver, but only for a while. Family troubles and his disillusionment with the city sent him packing to southern California in 1934. There Stratton built a new career and a large estate. Stratton Lane in San Marino, California, is named for himStratton served for a time as acting consul of The Netherlands for Colorado and New Mexico. He was also very involved in the Rotary Club, the Republican Party, the Presbyterian Church, and various professional groups. Carlos Gordon Stratton died on September 16, 1967, in Los Angeles.

Carlos G. Stratton's Story in Weird Tales
"A Pair of Mummies" (Mar. 1925)

Further Reading
You can read more about Carlos Stratton in The Rotarian magazine, as well as in his obituary in the Los Angeles Times, September 18, 1967. Another brief article and a photograph appeared on the front page of the Torrance Herald, September 11, 1941.

Carlos G. Stratton in a diminutive photograph from his college yearbook at the University of Denver, 1922.
Carlos G. Stratton

Note: Thanks to Randal Everts for further information on Carlos G. Stratton, including the portrait photograph.
Text and captions copyright 2011 Terence E. Hanley


  1. I wonder if he's any kin to WK Stratton, the famous actor and author?

    1. Dear Anonymous,

      I have just read up on W.K. Stratton. "He" is actually a "they":

      Actor Walter Kirk Stratton, Jr., was born on August 2, 1950, in Front Royal, Virginia. He appeared on the television show Baa Baa Black Sheep (Black Sheep Squadron).

      Author William Kip Stratton was born in Guthrie, Oklahoma. I don't his age nor his date of birth. He has written books of poetry, biography, history, and sports.

      This is a starting point for research but I'm afraid I can't be the one to do it. I will, however, accept a comment here from anyone who comes up with good results.

      Thanks for writing.