Texas Genealogy Trails

State News Gleanings


Little Rock, Ark., July 28
Late from Texas
A gentleman who returned a few days ago from the Southern counties of this Territory, informs us that very late advices had just been received there from Mr. Austin's settlement on the Colorado, in the province of Texas, stating, that a great and unusual rise of that river had taken place this Spring, which had overflowed and destroyed nearly all the corn and other crops of the settlers.  This distressing calamity happened so late in the season as to prevent the possibility of replanting and great suffering was anticipated by the settlers in consequence of the loss of their crops.  Game was exceedingly scarce, and many of the inhabitants  were obliged to subsist on wild horses or mustangs.  A large portion of the settlers were in indigent circumstances and the prospects of all by no means favorable.  So much for the rage for emigrating to Texas .  May their sufferings prove a warning to those who evince a disposition to follow them.  Gazette. (Source: Republican Compiler (Gettysburg, Pennsylvania)  August 24 1825 - Submitted by: Nancy Piper)

Captain Leftwitch of Russellville , Kentucky in behalf of an association formed for that purpose has obtained from the government of Mexico a grant of land between 6 and 8 million of acres, in the province of Texas .  It consists of land ceded away by the United States in exchange for the Floridas and lies along the borders of Louisiana.  One of the conditions of the grant is that a certain number of settlers shall be obtained with an exemption from taxation for five years. – Balt. Amer. (Source: Republican Compiler (Gettysburg, Pennsylvania)  August 24 1825 - Submitted by: Nancy Piper)

General Wilkinson it appears by the Arkansas Gazette, has procured a grant for a large tract of land in the Province of Texas and wishes to settle it with a body of honest and well disposed Americans.  He contemplates establishing a colony at the Bay of Trinity on the Sabine river, forty-five miles from Natchitoches , but as the emigrants from the United States to the province have heretofore met with little else but disappointments, the inducements must be very powerful to attract any considerable number of adventurers to the new establishment. (Republican Compiler (Gettysburg, Pennsylvania)  September 14, 1825 - Submitted by Nancy Piper)


From Texas, (In Mexico)
Arkansas, Oct. 10
Emancipation of Slaves in Texas.
   We learn by a gentleman of this place who arrived a few days since from Miller county, that a citizen of that county had returned just before he started from the Province of Texas, bringing information that great excitement prevailed throughout the several Colonies in that country, when he left there, in consequence of the recent passage of a law by the Mexican Government for the Emancipation Of All The Slaves In The Province Of Texas, and that orders had been received for carrying it into immediate effect.  As many well be supposed, this information produced the greatest consternation among the slave-holders, all of whom had emigrated to that country under an assurance, as we are informed, from the local authorities of Texas, that they could hold their slaves; though we are under the impression that slavery is prohibited throughout the Republic by the Constitution of Mexico.
    The large slave-holders were hurrying off their slaves in great numbers in Louisianna nad Arkansas; and we have heard of several persons who emigrated from this Territory who have recently crossed the line into Louisiana, with their slaves.  Those persons who have but few slaves, have held meetings at which it was resolved that they would stand by each other in resisting the execution of the law until they can gather this year s crop after which they have determined to leave the country.
    We also learn that the Indians have been very troublesome for some time past, to the colonists, and that in many settlements they were under the necessity of erecting forts for their protection, and retreating into them for security.  Several persons had been killed by the Indians within a few months, but at the latest advices, the alarm was subsiding.  The crops are said to be short this season and the country very sickly. Gazette. (Source: Republican Compiler (Gettysburg, Pennsylvania November 22, 1826 - Submitted by Nancy Piper)


Revolt in Texas
The Alexandria (Louisiana) Messenger of December 22, contains the following paragraph: Col. Butler arrived in town two or three days since and brought the intelligence that the province of Texas had taken up arms to free itself from the Mexican Republic.  If such a thing is but now in progress, the day is not distant when it will take place.  Those who emigrate to that country are undiminished in expressing their determination, as the provincials do, to make a stand and set up for themselves, whenever they feel strong enough to resist the parent government. Knowing these things and the disturbances and want of government in the province, we think there is every probability that the report is true. (Source: Republican Compiler (Gettysburg, Pennsylvania January 31, 1827 - Submitted by Nancy Piper)

New York, Feb. 15
From New Orleans
We have received by the packet ship Azelia, New Orleans papers to the 27th ult., inclusive.  The Advertiser of the 25th says, We learn by the steamboat from Natchitoches, that hostilities have commenced between the forces of the Mexican Republic and the Revolutionists in Texas.  It appears that a party of Mexicans, about sixty in number approached a fortified house in the vicinity of Nacogdoches, which was garrisoned by the Fredonians.  About fifteen of the latter sallied out to meet the assailants, who were repulsed with the loss of four killed and several wounded.  It was doubtful which party would prevail in the end.  Our information leads us to believe that a large proportion of the colonists in Texas have taken sides with the revolutionists. (Republican Compiler (Gettysburg, Pennsylvania February 28, 1827 - Submitted by Nancy Piper)

The Nachitoches Courier  (&?...) some further advices relative to the insurrection in the Province of Texas, from which it appears, that the emigrants in Austin s Colony have declined joining the insurgents, or Fredonians, as they stile themselves.
   The same paper contains a letter from Col. Edwards, detailing the particulars of a skirmish, which took place on the 4th ultimo, at Nacogdoches, between a party of the friends of the Mexican Government and about 20 whites and Indians of the insurgent party, in which the former were defeated, with the loss of one killed and 8 or 9 wounded, three of whom have since died.
   The letter writer says, notwithstanding the absurdity of this attempt at Freedom, in the opinion of many, it will cost the Mexicans great trouble and very heavy expense to suppress the insurrection and if the numerous nations of Indians who inhabit the Province are as determined on keeping the country independent, it will be a long and savage war, but in our opinion they will be eventually exterminated or drove to the Rocky mountains.
   The number of Indians in the Province is very large; it is said by some who have been among the Commanchas, that they have between five and six thousand Warriors; others estimate their numbers to be between ten and fifteen thousand; these Indians have been at war with the Spaniards ever since they have been in the country, but their warfare has been of late, carried on by small parties, whose principal object is plunder.  There are 15 or 20 other tribes but their numbers are small and as there has always been a want of unanimity among the Indians in carrying on wars, it is probable that the last named will not co-operate with their brethren in opposing the Mexicans. (Republican Compiler (Gettysburg , Pennsylvania April 11, 1827 - Submitted by Nancy Piper)


From The Rio Grande
Murder and Lynch Law
By the arrival of the steamship Yacht we have received the American Flag of the 17th inst. There were reports of Indian depredations between Brownsville and Point Isabel. The house of Mr. G. L. Stillwater, near the Sal Colorado, was attacked by eleven Indians, who, however, were repulsed. It is supposed that a Mr. Holbrook was killed by them. The Flag relates that a young Mexican who shot and killed another Mexican at Monte Bank, and attempted to escape by swimming the river, was captured, brought back, and hung in twenty minutes from the time the murder was committed. Another occurrence of the same kind took place on the 11th inst. The night before, at a fandango, or rather after having left it, Capt. John Brannen was followed, stabbed, and killed by a notorious ruffian, named Bill Hardy. He was arrested next morning about daylight, ironed and taken to jail. The only cause assigned for the brutal outrage was the refusal of Brennan to let Hardy have money while at Brazos. On learning the character of the man, and the insecureness of the jail, the citizens of Brownsville determined, as the prisoner had confessed his guilt, to cut short his murderous career at once. A meeting assembled, and it was voted that the culprit should be hung forthwith. The Flag describes the rest of the proceedings as follows: "The crowd then proceeded to the jail and demanded the culprit. The prisoner was unfettered and brought forth, and in that condition permitted to walk to the place of his execution. He evidenced the most perfect indifference as to his fate, not suffering a muscle of his face or limb to betray the least emotion, and even took the rope that was to hang him and tied the hangman's knot to show how it was done, without the slightest perceptible tremor of the nerve.  N. O. Pic. July 23. Gallipolis Journal (Gallipolis, Oh.) Thursday, August 8, 1850 - Submitted by Kathy McDaniels


Texas Flood Imperils 800 Lives
A dispatch from Houston, Tex., published in yesterday s papers says:  Loss of life, from one to three hundred.  Loss to farmers, from $5,000,000 to $15,000,000.  Damages to railroads and bridges, from $2,000,000 to $4,000,000.
   The foregoing figures area a conservative estimate of the terrible work wrought by the flood in the fairest part of Texas.  The estimates are taken in the whole area.  It is known that more than sixty people have met their death; that many bodies have been recovered; it is not believed that all of them will ever be recovered.  In the Brazos bottoms, eight hundred people, without food, are isolated on a small piece of land.
   In all, twenty-four counties are submerged to a greater or less extent and thousands of acres of cotton lands are under water.  The loss of cotton yield alone is estimated at from 15,000 to 30,000 bales in each county, entailing a monetary loss of fully $8,000,000. (Source: Bedford Gazette (Bedford , Pennsylvania) July 7, 1899)


Lumber, Tex.—Loading ties on cars for shipment has been reduced to an economic science at this camp by G. E. Davidson, manager of the tie department of the Kirby Lumber Company. That company is now decidedly active here loading ties. The loading device of Mr. Davidson comprises an endless chain operated -by an electric motor. The power is furnished by a. gasoline engine operating a dynamo. Two men are required to place the ties on the chain at one end and two remove them at the other end and place them on the car.  (The Lumber Trade Journal 1916 - Submitted by Tina Easley)

W. C. Shippee has been appointed South Texas representative of the Louisiana Red Cypress Company of New Orleans, succeeding Robert Learmont. Mr. Shippee has been in Texas for two years traveling for the Waco Sash & Door Company, and is well known in the short time he has been in that state. He is insisting upon a rigid enforce. He has been a decided success as a salesman, a fact vouched for by his being able to secure such an important traveling position with the Louisiana Red Cypress Company.  (The Lumber Trade Journal 1916 - Submitted by Tina Easley)

The old Benford Lumber Company, Benford. Tex., has passed from existence and in its place there is the Mardez Lumber Company. The plant and properties of the old company were recently acquired by Lynch Davidson, of Houston, Tex., president of the Continental Lumber Company. Mr. Davidson is president, H. J. Cullen, vice president, and G. M. Seaman, secretary and treasurer of the new company. In addition to the plant facilities the company has 100 million feet of virgin pine timber.  (The Lumber Trade Journal 1916 - Submitted by Tina Easley)

Reports from Hornbeck, La., state that city is showing signs of great prosperity as a result of activity on the part of small sawmill operations. Ed Morgan has started construction of a 25,000 capacity mill within the city limits. McCray & Morgan are putting up another mill east of that place. D. B. Pate and associates are putting up a mill 10 miles east of Hornbeck.  (The Lumber Trade Journal 1916 - Submitted by Tina Easley)

The R. W. Wier Lumber Company announces it will have its mill at Texla, Tex., ready for operation soon after the first of the year. The mill was operated by another concern up to a short time ago, when the old owners were compelled to take it over. The owners are just completing a series of extensive improvements. The mill has a capacity of 50,000 feet per day.  (The Lumber Trade Journal 1916 - Submitted by Tina Easley)

The Lutcher & Moore Lumber Company, Orange, Tex., last week closed a contract for steel rails for 35 miles of new railway it will build north from Niblett's Bluff. The rails are of 56-pound weight and it will take about 4,000 tons for the mileage necessary. The contract was given to the Joe Kaufman Company, of New Orleans.  (The Lumber Trade Journal 1916 - Submitted by Tina Easley)


Torrential rains, squalls and high tides along the Texas Gulf Coast Thursday flooded highways and left a small boat missing in the gulf. The squally weather extended on up into the state, indirectly causing three highway deaths.The wreckage of a Port Aransas boat owned by Gaines Hicks and participating in the Tarpon Derby there was washed ashore near theSouth Pier In Port Aransas late Thursday afternoon. The four occupants rode ashore on pieces of wreckage; but J. G. Waggonfehr, one of the four, died from exhaustion and possible heart attack later despite resuscitation efforts of volunteer firemen, Coast Guardsmen and others.
    Another small vessel, apparently caught in raging off-shore squalls was missing off Galveston. A faint distress signal from it was received by the Galveston Coast Guard late Wednesday night.
    Freakish weather hit in West Texas. Blowing dust at Wink at 5:30 p.m. reduced visibility there to two miles. An hour later a thunderstorm light rain hit Wink. The weather bureau said it was a local condition, unrelated to the Gulf storm.
    A thunderstorm dumped heavy rain on San Antonio at 7:30 p.m. with wind there only three miles per hour heavy drops plummeted down.
    At the same time Corpus Christi reported 20-mile-per-hour winds, indicating a thunderstorm In the vicinity. Rain fell at Lufkin, Austin, Galveston and Houston. The latest highway death was that of Steve Earl Hitt, 31, of Blooming Grove. He was Killed when his car skidded on the highway near Galveston Thursday during a rain and hit a culvert.
    Downpours forced some 100 families from their homes at Lake Charles, La.
    The tides In the Sabine-Neches Canal at their highest level In nine years caused two maritime collisions in the heart of Port Arthur.
    The tide's swift currents and strong winds were blamed for veering several craft off course. In one mishap a tug towing three barges struck the fenders of a bridge. In another a tug towing three barges loaded with oil collided with another tug pulling two empty barges, one loaded barge was torn loose and oil covered the water. Total amount of damage was undetermined.
    Heavily traveled US. Highway 90 between Orange, Texas, and Louisiana was closed. So was US 87 between Sabine Pass and High Island. At Houston the Lynchburg ferry went out of service when three feet of water covered highway approaches on both sides of the Houston ship cannel
    As heavy rains added to the nearly fifteen inches recorded there since Tuesday, ninety-three families were moved out of their homes at Lake Charles Air Force Base. Another seven or eight families were evacuated from homes near Lake Charles High School
    The rain reached far inland.
    Near Waco, Theodore Hill, 47, of Marble Falls, and an unidentified woman died when their truck skidded on rain-slick pavement and smacked into another truck.
    Intermittent light showers still fell at Orange as the city fought to get back to normal after being soaked with ten inches of rain in forty-eight hours.
    Firemen at Orange rescued a woman from her trailer after she'd been trapped several hours when the downpour tore an awning loose and pinned it against the trailer door. Shouts from the woman finally attracted a neighbor's attention.
    At midafternoon Thursday rain, fog and heavy clouds cloaked a wide area from the Texas coast far inland.
    Showers fell at Dallas, Lufkin, Houston, Galveston, Fort Worth, Longview, Big Spring, Beaumont and Tyler.
    Temperatures over the state ranged from the 70's along the coast to the mid- 90's in West Texas, the only area with clear skies.
    The Weather Bureau said the Gulf Coast disturbance which brought all the rain was weakening. (Source: Dallas Morning News July 18 1952 - submitted by: Barb Ziegnemeyer)

Auto Accidents Claim 47 lives
Texas' hopes for a safe Christmas-New Year's holiday record were fading fast late Saturday as highway accident fires and shootings piled up the violent death toil.
     By midnight Saturday, at least eight-one persons had met violent death since Christmas Eve. Of these, forty-seven had died in traffic accidents. Before the holiday period started Col. Homer Garrison, director of the State Department of Public Safety, had predicted that 202 persons would be dead because of violence by New Year's Day. Of that number he estimated that 105 would die in traffic mishaps. On the basis of the first three days of reported deaths, Garrison thought Friday the state had a chance of lowering its expected year-end death toll. But a flurry of serious accidents late Friday and Saturday dimmed the prospects that violence would be less this year. Meanwhile, the toll of deaths across the nation neared 600, and the number of traffic fatalities edged tragically close to a record for a four-day Christmas week end. By midnight Saturday, traffic accidents across the nation had claimed 414 lives. Fifty-eight persons had died in fires and seventy-six in miscellaneous accidents.
     Heavy highway traffic Saturday night and Sunday, with many travelers homeward bound, could push the traffic toll past the previous record slaughter 555 during the four-day Christmas holiday in 1936. At least fourteen new deaths occurred in Texas from midnight Friday to midnight Saturday.
     John (Pat) Philley, 61, retired real estate man and farmer, was burned to death when fire damaged his home early Saturday morning at Abilene.
     Dave Morris, 60, injured in a Christmas Eve automobile accident in Fort Worth, died Saturday.
     George Sanchez, 27, of Palacios died Saturday of gunshot wounds received Christmas Day. A deputy sheriff said he shot Sanchez when the latter refused to drop a pistol.
     Mrs. Paul Lucas, 27, of Belton, mother of four small children, was shot to death Saturday at her home and her father was charged with murder without malice. Her husband was charged with aggravated assault in the affray.
     Larry Weldon Burton, 4, was burned to death Saturday when a gasoline stove exploded at his home at Carlisle, Trinity County.
     Roy Sanders, 16, of Oak Hill, near Henderson, was accidentally shot to death Saturday while squirrel hunting:
     The body of Fannie McAfee, 23-year-old Henderson woman, was found badly slashed Saturday near Henderson, She had been missing since Christmas Eve. An ex-convict is being held for questioning.
     Casher Looper, 50, of West Los Angeles, Calif., was killed when he rammed his car into the back end of a truck near Colorado City Saturday.
     Airman First Class William John Webb, 21, of Kelly Air Force Base, San Antonio, was shot to death Saturday at the home of his wife's parents. His wife told officers she playfully pointed the rifle at her husband and thought she had an unloaded gun.
     Mrs. Betty Jane Hippard, about twenty-six, was shot to death at her Odessa home Saturday. A small automatic pistol was found beside her, and officers said there would be no verdict because she died in the presence of a doctor.
     Henderson Berry Willingham, 45, died Saturday from injuries received when his car left the road and hit a culvert near Comfort in Central Texas.
     K. B. Harris, 62, Lubbock, died Saturday from burns received earlier in an explosion and fire in the small cafe he operated.
     J. B. Goodman, about 26, died Saturday from gunshot wounds received Christmas Day in a shooting affray at Lamesa.
     A Cabaniss Field sailor was killed instantly Saturday right in a two-car collision near Aransas Pass. Identification was withheld pending notification of next of kin. (Source: Dallas Morning News Dec 28 1952)



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