Thompson H. Shackelford was the son of Wesley Shackelford and Jane Garrison of Stafford County, Virginia. He was a blacksmith and lived in Wide Water. Thompson married Emma Abel (born c.1874). In 1901, he was a constable for the Aquia District. The 1910 census denotes him as a “miner mineral mines,” possibly indicating that he was then working at the Austin Run Pyrite Mine.