Emmet Marshall was born in Dexter Texas in the Delaware Bend country near the Red River in 1877, the eldest of many children. He was raised a rancher and helped his father with cattle and the family merchandise store in Dexter. He married in 1898, raised a large family of his own, and moved into Gainesville sometime soon after marrying. He bought and sold land and, later, oil rights, was the superintendent of the Gainesville School Board for many years, and was widely respected for his honesty and fairness. He died in 1957 and is buried in Fairview Cemetery, Gainesville, with his wife Lillian Washington Marshall.