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Texans fight at Chickamauga
September 19, 1863
On this day in 1863, the two-day battle of Chickamauga began, ending in one of the last great field victories for the Confederacy. The first day's action, fought in densely wooded terrain, became a classic "soldier's battle" in which generalship counted for little and the outcome was decided by fierce small-unit encounters.Texas units in the Georgia battle included Hood's Texas Brigade, Ector's Brigade, Deshler's Brigade, and Terry's Texas Rangers. As Hood's Brigade went into battle they called to a regiment of exhausted Tennesseans, "Rise up, Tennesseans, and see the Texans go in!" When they in turn came staggering back from the woods after being repulsed by Union cavalry, a Tennessean was waiting to yell, "Rise up, Tennesseans, and see the Texans come out!" Among the Texas casualties in the battle were Gen. James Deshler, who was killed, and John Bell Hood, who lost a leg.
Forerunner of Bergstrom Air Force Base is activated near Austin
September 19, 1942
On this day in 1942, Del Valle Army Air Base was activated. The facility was constructed on 3,000 acres of land donated by the city of Austin. It was renamed Bergstrom Field on November 11, 1943, in honor of Capt. John A. Bergstrom, the first Austinite killed in World War II. In 1948 the name was changed to Bergstrom Air Force Base. The base closed on September 30, 1993. The land was returned to the city of Austin, and in May of 1999 Austin-Bergstrom International Airport was opened on the site and Robert Mueller Municipal Airport was closed.
La Grange Intelligencer publishes last issue
September 19, 1846
On this day in 1846, the last issue of the La Grange Intelligencer was published. The Fayette County weekly began publication in January 1844 with James Langley and William P. Bradburn as editor and publisher. William B. McClellan was publisher by August 1845. Smallwood S. B. Fields, who became editor about May 30, 1844, announced that he planned to devote a part of each issue to information on "Politics, Science, Agriculture, Religion, Foreign Affairs, Miscellaneous Items, and Domestic Matters" but kept the right to "animadvert freely" on government practice. The paper was against Sam Houston and for Edward Burleson for president in 1844, and Fields engaged in an editorial war with Thomas Johnson of the National Vindicator. In the September 12, 1845, issue, Fields asked for the friends of the paper to support it with "corn, fodder, potatoes, meat, lumber, cattle, or anything from a dozen eggs to a stick of firewood" to keep it from closing. Evidently his appeal was in vain.
Jane Long sees her filibustering husband for the last time
September 19, 1821
On this day in 1821, James Long left his wife, Jane, at Fort Las Casas on the Bolivar Peninsula, for a journey to La Bahía. But James, who was plotting and working for the overthrow of the Mexican government, was captured at San Antonio and taken to Mexico City, whence he never returned. Three months after he left, Jane gave birth to a daughter. After losing her husband, Jane unsuccessfully sought a pension from Governor José Félix Trespalacios, a former compadre of James Long. Forced to earn a living, she ran a boarding house in Brazoria for several years before moving to her land grant in the Austin colony. In Richmond, Texas, she opened another boarding house and built a plantation. By the time of the Civil War she was rich. But the war reduced her to near-penury. She lived dependent upon her children and grandchildren, and died in 1880 in Richmond. Her old reputation as the "Mother of Texas" was based on her own inaccurate claim to be the first English-speaking woman to bear a child in Texas; several had preceded her. In her imaginative, old-age account of her early suitors, she claimed to have been courted by Texas greats including Milam, Houston, and Lamar.
posted by Jeff 9.19.2011 The Texas State Historical Association