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Words of Wisdom

"Time is what we want most, but what we use the worst."
~William Penn

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Moments in Texas History ~ 7.19.2011


Sam Houston relieves Edwin Moore of command of the Texas Navy
July 19, 1843
On this day in 1843, President Sam Houston relieved Commodore Edwin Moore of command of the Texas Navy. Moore had clashed with Houston over the navy's activities in support of Mexican rebels in the Yucatán. Houston proclaimed the navy to be pirates and requested any friendly country to capture the navy's ships and return them to Galveston. Before this could happen, Moore returned voluntarily to Galveston, whereupon Houston dishonorably discharged him without so much as a court-martial. Moore appealed to the Congress of the Republic of Texas and finally got a fair trial in August 1844, in which he was found not guilty. In November 1843 the entire fleet was put up for auction, though the people of Galveston, incensed at the thought of selling the navy, prevented the submission of bids. Nevertheless, Moore's July cruise marked the end of the operative career of the Texas Navy.

Texas outlaw fatally wounded in robbery
July 19, 1878
On this day in 1878, Sam Bass was mortally wounded when he and his gang of outlaws tried to rob the bank in Round Rock. The Texas Rangers were waiting for them. The next day Bass was found lying in a field outside of town. He was brought back to Round Rock, where he died two days later. Bass, an Indiana native, had worked in a sawmill, as a cowboy, and as a freighter. He also owned a fast racehorse. After squandering money earned on a trail drive, he recruited a gang and began robbing stagecoaches and railroads. He died at the age of twenty-seven.

St. Denis arrives at San Juan Bautista
July 19, 1714
On this day in 1714, Louis Juchereau de St. Denis arrived at San Juan Bautista Presidio. The French governor of Louisiana had dispatched St. Denis, born near Quebec in 1674, and a company of men from Mobile in 1713 to assist Francisco Hidalgo in reestablishing missions in East Texas. The commandant at San Juan Bautista, Diego Ramón, placed St. Denis under house arrest while awaiting instructions on what to do with a foreigner bearing goods banned by Spanish mercantile restrictions. So mild was St. Denis's confinement that he ended up engaged to the commandant's beautiful granddaughter, Manuela Sánchez, whom he married in early 1716. He subsequently participated in the founding of six missions and a presidio in East Texas. St. Denis died at Natchitoches in 1744.

T&P finally reaches Fort Worth, touching off celebration
July 19, 1876
On this day in 1876, the Texas and Pacific Railway finally completed its line into Fort Worth. Construction of the line had stalled just sixteen miles to the east, at Eagle Ford. Eager to reach Fort Worth before the Texas legislature could revoke its charter and withhold its land subsidy, the T&P hired Welshman Morgan Jones to complete the line before the legislature adjourned. Work continued day and night, while a little more than a mile a day of track was laid. A holiday spirit filled the town when Jones's line finally reached Fort Worth on time. The success made the Welshman a local hero and marked the beginning of a new era of growth for Fort Worth.
posted by Jeff ~ 7.19.2011  The Texas State Historical Association

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