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Texas | Columns

"ALL THINGS HISTORICAL" Archive Articles
A weekly column syndicated in 70 East Texas newspapers
by Bob Bowman & Archie P. McDonald, PhD

People

  • The Wisdom Table by Bob Bowman 1-25-09
    In towns across East Texas, big and small, there’s usually a place where elderly men gather each morning to have a cup or two of coffee--and solve the world’s problems. Well, maybe some of the problems.

  • The Cherokee Line by Bob Bowman 11-23-08
    The Cherokee Boundary Line, an important part of East Texas, finally got the recognition it deserves recently in a ceremony on a oiltop road north of Canton...

  • A man who got around by Bob Bowman 11-18-08
    Ambrose Fitzgerald really got around East Texas--and without ever leaving his homestead...

  • Celebrating a 101st birthday by Bob Bowman 10-27-08
    Known affectionately as “Ber Ber,” Bertha always has a twinkle in her eyes and has memories few other people her age can only imagine.

  • Gussie Nell Davis by Archie P. McDonald 8-25-08
    Gussie Nell Davis and the Kilgore Rangerettes

  • Howard Hughes by Archie P. McDonald 7-28-08
    Howard Robard Hughes Sr.

  • Indian tribe linked with Texas history by Bob Bowman 6-1-08
    Thousands of people drive through East Texas each year without the knowledge that an Indian reservation--one that played a role in the independence of Texas--exists within the pine forests...

  • A gifted writer by Bob Bowman 6-1-08
    Few people knew Landon Bradshaw, a self-educated writer who had a remarkable gift for telling stories in a down-to-earth fashion. He wrote only one book, “These People Actually Lived in East Texas.” People who have copies cherish it with an affection reserved only for their wives and rich uncles.

  • Humor in graveyards by Bob Bowman 5-26-08
    As Jackie Asque made her funeral arrangements, she wrote down instructions for a tombstone inscription. When she passed away at Lufkin in 1983, the epitaph was chiseled into her gravestone: “See, I told you I was sick.” Traveling across East Texas, graveyard visitors are often rewarded with other humorous and poignant tombstone inscriptions.

  • Peter Ellis Bean by Archie P. McDonald 4-28-08
    The American frontier produced many colorful characters, including Peter Ellis Bean...
  • "Take Care of My Little Boy" by Archie P. McDonald 3-31-08
    The second most quoted letter William B. Travis penned in the Alamo while awaiting Santa Anna's assault began, "Take care of my little boy. If the country should be saved, I may make him a splendid fortune; but if the country should be lost, and I should perish, he will have nothing but the proud recollection that he is the son of the man who died for his country." Travis wrote this last letter from the Alamo early in March 1836 to David Ayers...

  • Did Davy survive? by Bob Bowman 2-25-08
    Did Davy Crockett survive the battle of the Alamo, only to be sent to Mexico as a prisoner and forced to work in a mine? The possibility was raised in an edition of Southwestern Historical Quarterly in April of 1940...

  • The Printer Fires Both Barrels by Archie P. McDonald 2-18-08
    Archer Fullingim

  • Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday by Archie P. McDonald 1-7-08
  • Walter Paye Lane by Archie P. McDonald 12-10-07
  • Margie Neal by Archie P. McDonald 11-26-07
  • Pamelia Mann, Tough Texan by Archie P. McDonald 11-12-07
    A lady of my acquaintance, active in the Daughters of the Republic of Texas, once complained to me on the argumentative nature of her sisters in this hereditary Lone Star sorority. My explanation: it's in the blood...

  • James Long, Filibuster by Archie P. McDonald 10-29-07
    And Jane Long, Mother of Texas.

  • Jim Swink comes home by Bob Bowman 9-3-07
    Jim Swink, the lanky halfback who thrilled high school and Texas Christian University football fans in the 1950s, has returned home to his roots...

  • Many Places of LaSalle's Murder by Bob Bowman 7-31-07
    It may have been the first known murder of a Caucasian male in East Texas and, ever since Texas became a civilized land, the site of La Salle's murder has been a source of unbridled speculation. At least eight communities have made claims as "the place were La Salle was killed."...
  • John Henry Faulk by Archie P. McDonald 7-31-07
    Johnny Faulk had once been atop the show business ladder in New York City, only to tumble when falsely accused during the era of McCarthyism of being a communist. Perhaps it was fighting back that hurt him most...
  • A Sturdy Pioneer by Bob Bowman 7-16-07
    One of my favorite history addicts is ninety-four-year-old Pearl Weaver Havard, who also cooks a mean plate of cat head biscuits and brown gravy. Pearl has lived in the same part of Angelina Country--within the so-called prairie communities along Farm Road 1818 east of Diboll--all of her life...

  • Haden Edwards by Archie P. McDonald 7-9-07
    Haden Edwards helped influence the Anglo settlement of East Texas almost as much as Stephen F. Austin, but the state capitol and a couple of universities are not named for him. Here's why...

  • The Republic's First President by Archie P. McDonald 6-4-07
    Usually, the argument about who first served as president of the Republic of Texas involves David G. Burnet, who was appointed interim president by the Consultation that declared Texas independent on March 2, 1836, and Sam Houston, first elected president in September. Maybe Richard Ellis has a claim, too...

  • Price Daniel by Archie P. McDonald 5-21-07
    Price Daniel served in more political offices than anyone I know and he did so with distinction and honor.
  • Washington’s East Texas Cousin by Bob Bowman 4-30-07
    Alexander Hamilton Washington, a cousin of George Washington, cut a wide swath through Polk and San Jacinto counties before and after the Civil War, but finding any physical reminder of his 28 years in East Texas is almost impossible...
  • Speak for yourself, Robert by Archie P. McDonald 4-23-07
  • Jane McManus Storm Cazneau by Archie P. McDonald 3-07
  • Governor Thomas Mitchell Campbell by Archie P. McDonald 2-07
  • A Centenarian's Life by Bob Bowman 2-18-07
    A long, long time ago, Clara Davis stopped trying to remember the names of her grandchildren. But there's a good reason. At the age of 106, she has 218 of them--34 grandchildren, 91 great-grandchildren, and 93 great-great grandkids...
  • Bring 'Em Back Alive: Frank Buck by Archie P. McDonald 2-12-07
    Before the late Steve Ervin wrestled his first crocodile, ... before swimming champion Johnny Weissmuller personified Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzan and Jungle Jim in movies and serials, and before John Wayne performed in a film titled "Hatari!" about a professional trapper of animals for zoos, Frank Buck captured American and international audiences with tales of his adventures doing just those kinds of things everywhere on the planet.
  • The Love Boys by Bob Bowman 1-22-07
    For more than fifty years, brothers Olen and Seaby Love have lived on the same plot of land in rural Morris County, living in ways that haven't changed much from the days of their pioneer parents.
  • The Smith Brothers by Bob Bowman 1-8-07
    Four brothers from Delta County lived with an ordinary name in the mid-1800s, but they were far from ordinary...
  • He Done Her Wrong: The Sad Case of Mrs. Harriet Moore Page Potter Ames by Archie P. McDonald 1-2-07
    Well. One might say a whole lot of men did Harriet wrong. After growing up in New Orleans, Harriet Moore left a prosperous retail store and traveled to the wilds of colonial Texas with what turned out to be only her first husband, Solomon C. Page. Prosperity stayed behind in Louisiana.
  • "My Blue Heaven: Gene Austin" by Archie P. McDonald 12-4-06
    Gainesville, in Cooke County, gained a native son named Eugene Lucas on June 24,1900. Lucas became one of the nation's most popular entertainers during the 1930s, but by then he used his stepfather's name-Austin...
  • The Babe by Archie P. McDonald 11-20-06
    Mildred Ella Didrikson, the greatest woman athlete of the twentieth century, was the sixth child born to Norwegian immigrants Ole Nickolene and Hannah Marie Olson Didriksen, in Port Arthur, Texas, in 1911...
  • William Marsh Rice by Archie P. McDonald 10-9-06
    Everyone loves a murder mystery, especially if the murder happened a long time ago and did not involve someone they know. The story of William Marsh Rice's demise is such a case, especially since I am a beneficiary of his will. Let me explain.
  • America's Team by Archie P. McDonald 9-11-06
    The Dallas Cowboys, dubbed America's Team in 1978 by Bob Ryan, editor of NFL Films, really are East Texas' team. That is because the first owners, Clint Murchison Jr. and Bedford Wynne, were East Texans...
  • Guinn Big Boy Williams by Archie P. McDonald 8-28-06
    We talk mostly about the "stars" of movies, but we know that character actors can help a film succeed or cause it to fail. One of the best was Guinn Williams, known to generations of filmgoers-especially devotees of Westerns-as Guinn "Big Boy" Williams...
  • High Sheriff of Henderson County by Archie P. McDonald 8-14-06
    Old time East Texans refer to some of their revered and feared lawmen as the "high sheriff," likely an unwitting reference to an even older office of authority dating back to medieval England… In Henderson County, the legend was Jess Sweeten.
  • The Hardin Brothers by Bob Bowman 7-10-06
    More than 110 years have passed since East Texas outlaw John Wesley Hardin was shot down in an El Paso saloon, but he remains one of the most intriguing badmen in history. Almost lost in Hardin's history are his three brothers, Joe, Jeff and Gip, whose lives were also singed with violence...
  • East Texas Savior of the French Wine Industry by Archie P. McDonald 6-5-06
    Those who favor a glass of wine, especially French wine, may not be aware of the debt they and the French owe to Dr. Thomas Volney Munson of Denison, Texas
  • Tennessee Williams' Texas Director by Bob Bowman 5-29-06
    Without the interest of an East Texas woman, American theater icon Tennessee Williams might still be writing high school plays in a small town.
  • Father Margil by Archie P. McDonald 5-22-06
    Father Antonio Margil de Jesus helped introduce Christianity to the wilderness of East Texas, but his story began in Valencia, Spain, where he was born in 1657...
  • A Personal Hero by Bob Bowman 5-14-06
    "Leon Herman Adickes, 88, ... died recently at Hemphill -- a place where he helped make history by simply doing things to make his community a better place. Most of what he did were acts like making sure Hemphill had a doctor, a hospital, a nursing home and a Lions Club...."
  • Fall of the Largest Tree by Bob Bowman 5-1-06
    "The passing of Arthur Temple -- the man some newspapers called the last of the East Texas timber barons -- ended a link with a history reaching back more than a century."
  • The Parker Family by Bob Bowman 4-17-06
    "In the same decade that established Cynthia Ann Parker and her son, Indian Chief Quanah Parker, as living legends, another clan of Parkers wrote their own chapter of history in East Texas..."
  • Three-legged Willie by Bob Bowman 4-3-06
    Robert McAlpin Williamson
    "The Republic of Texas, which existed only a decade, had its share of interesting characters. But few of them were as colorful as Three Legged Willie, who passed away some 146 years ago..."
  • Honky Tonk Man by Archie P. McDonald 3-27-06
    Johnny Horton
  • Man with a Method by Archie P. McDonald 2-13-06
    Littleton Fowler
  • Legacy of an Oldtimer by Bob Bowman 2-5-06
    "Alvin Burchfield of Rusk is the kind of oldtimer every historian dreams of interviewing. At 92, he remembers more facts and dates than you'll find in most county history books."
  • Old Time Judge by Archie P. McDonald 1-29-06
    Thomas Whitfield Davidson
  • Fairmount Cemetery by Bob Bowman 1-24-06
    Edward Smith and the Battle of Sabine Pass, and Thomas B. Anthony
  • FDR and Nine Acres by Bob Bowman 1-9-06
    "With luck -- and an infusion of funds -- a historic Kilgore home built in the 1930s could be on its way to regaining its stature as one of East Texas’ most interesting homes. Set in sylvan splendor in the middle of the East Texas Oil Field, the home of oilman Tom Potter is best known as Nine Acres, a place where President Franklin D. Roosevelt probably visited in the thirties."
  • Adah Isaccs Menken: The lady on the Horse by Archie P. McDonald 1-9-06
  • All Journalism is Local by Archie P. McDonald 12-26-05
    Millard Lewis Cope - "Tip O’Neil reminded us that 'all politics is local.' Millard Cope taught us that the best journalism is local, too."
  • The Quebe Sisters by Bob Bowman 11-27-05
    "If Bob Wills were around today, the chances are good that he would be delighted with three teenage sisters from Burleson. Listening to the Quebe Sisters play the western swing music pioneered by Wills in the 1930s and l940s, you realize they are special musicians who love what they’re doing..."
  • Dana X. Bible and the Twelfth Man by Archie P. McDonald 11-20-05
    Dana Xenophon Bible, football coach of the Aggies and Longhorns
  • A.M.Aikin, Jr. by Archie P. McDonald 11-7-05
    "In these days of evaluating our schools—exemplary to acceptable to whatever—and multiple special legislative sessions devoted to figuring out how to spend more money on schools while taking in less revenue, Texans might want to remember A.M. Aikin Jr., who helped drag education and Texas into modern times..."
  • The Light Crust Doughboys are on the air! by Archie P. McDonald 10-24-05
  • Norris Cuney by Archie P. McDonald 10-10-05
    "By the end of the nineteenth century, Norris Wright Cuney had become the most remarkable African American leader in Texas. Cuney technically began life as a slave on a plantation..."
  • The Other Babe by Archie P. McDonald 9-10-05
    "Babe" Didrikson, the outstanding woman athlete of the twentieth century.
  • Price Daniel by Archie P. McDonald 8-22-05
  • Flying Tigers by Archie P. McDonald 8-7-05
    Claire Lee Chennault
  • “Go straight to hell.” by Bob Bowman 8-1-05
    Sam B. Hall, Jr., the son of an East Texas lawyer and judge who rose to a leadership role in Congress and finished his career as a federal judge, was one of East Texas’ most interesting contemporary politicians.
  • Casablanca’s East Texan by Bob Bowman 7-24-05
    Dooley Wilson, the piano player who sang "As Time Goes By" in Casablanca
  • My Friend Morris by Bob Bowman 7-11-05
    "Morris Frank, who gained fame for his newspaper columns in the Houston Chronicle and his speeches throughout America..."
  • Old Three Hundred by Archie P. McDonald 7-5-05
  • East Texas and the Black Sox by Bob Bowman 7-1-05
    The 1919 World Series is best remembered as the most famous scandal in baseball history, but lost in that history is an East Texas connection to the scandal.
  • Chief Executives by Archie P. McDonald 6-20-05
    East Texas has produced its share of prominent personages in entertainment, business, medicine, and other professions but prominent political figures have tended to call other sections of the state their home, especially in the last half century. It started out differently.
  • Juneteenth by Archie P. McDonald 6-6-05
    "Most East Texans who have lived here more than at least a month of Sundays know that African Americans claim June 19, or Juneteenth, as their own special day to celebrate freedom. ... But do you know why June 19 is such a special day?"
  • Pass the Biscuits, Pappy by Bob Bowman 6-1-05
    His Texas homilies, radio broadcasts, hillbilly music and affinity for rural Texas propelled him into the governor’s office for two terms.
  • Rabbi Cohen by Archie P. McDonald 5-8-05
    Rabbi Henry Cohen provided a place for thousands of Jewish immigrants routed through the port of Galveston.
  • The Lady in Blue by Bob Bowman 5-1-05
    For longer than anyone can remember, the story of “the lady in blue” has existed on the fringes of East Texas history and religion.
  • Sharecroppers by Archie P. McDonald 4-24-05
  • Doris Miller: Hero by Archie P. McDonald 4-10-05
    African American hero of WWII
  • Shacklefoot by Bob Bowman 4-1-05
    Pirate chieftain Jean Laffite supposedly picked the spot on the river and built a community of crude cabins where his band of plunderers and highwaymen would have a commanding view of the river.
  • A Soldier's Story by Bob Bowman 3-27-05
    Milton Irish - A classic story of a simple soldier involved in the momentous events that gave birth to Texas
  • Turtle Bayou Resolutions by Archie P. McDonald 3-22-05
    "Turtle Bayou originates just west of Raywood in Liberty County and flows, eighteen miles away, into Lake Anahuac. Angry Texans camped near that bayou in June 1832, trying to figure out how to gain the release of William Barret Travis and Patrick Jack, who had been arrested in Anahuac by Mexican post commander Juan David Bradburn."
  • The Air Ace by Bob Bowman 3-1-05
    Lance C. Wade, Royal Air Force of Britain, World War II
  • Bet-A-Million Gates by Archie P. McDonald 2-16-05
    John Warne Gates, a native of Winfield, Illinois, became associated with three of Texas’ most important items: barbed wire, railroads, and oil.
  • Linda Darnell by Archie P. McDonald 1-16-05
    The brief but brilliant life of actress Linda Darnell began in Dallas on October 16, 1923...
  • LBJ and East Texas Politics by Archie P. McDonald 1-5-05
    Lyndon B. Johnson’s victory over Coke Stevenson for a Senate seat by only 87 votes earned this future president the nickname of "Landslide Lyndon." Everyone agrees that Johnson’s aides "stole" that election by "finding" additional votes for their candidate in Box 13 in Jim Wells County. What everyone might not know is that Johnson had been burned by a similar tactic in a special Senate race in 1941, and had vowed never to be caught short again.
  • John Henry Kirby by Archie P. McDonald 12/20/04
    An East Texas timber baron
  • Sam Rayburn's Home by Bob Bowman 12/13/04
  • Bill Longley: Down and Out in a Nacogdoches Jail by Archie P. McDonald 12-7-04
  • McDonald Observatory - An Orphan’s Gift by Bob Bowman 11-29-04
    Standing atop Mount Locke in the Big Bend area, McDonald Observatory is far removed from East Texas, but without the interest and generosity of an orphaned Confederate soldier from Clarksville, the world-famous astronomy center might not exist today. William McDonald ...
  • Beauford Jester by Archie P. McDonald 11/22/04
    Governor of Texas
  • Katherine Anne Porter in East Texas by Bob Bowman 11/15/04
    "Porter apparently never forgot her life in East Texas. Many of her short stories reflect the geography, rural traditions and language of the pineywoods."
  • Albert Thomas by Archie P. McDonald 11/9/04
    Albert Thomas, who represented the Eighth Congressional District — essentially, Harris County and Houston — in Congress for fifteen terms until his death on February 15, 1966
  • Old Fiddler by Bob Bowman 11/1/04
    Way back in the l930s, Henderson County storekeeper John Hatton leaped from obscurity into statewide prominence when Athens started its annual Old Fiddlers Reunion.
  • The House That House Built by Archie P. McDonald 10/21/04
    Edward Mandell House of Galveston and Houston rose about as high as one can go in Texas or United States politics, yet he never held an elective or appointive office. Instead of wanting to be "king," House was content to be the "king maker."
  • Governor by Chance - Edward Clark by Archie P. McDonald 10/6/04
  • Braniff International by Archie P. McDonald 9/7/04
    "Long before American Airlines moved to Dallas or Continental dominated Houston, Braniff flew the skies over Texas."
  • Webster's Buck by by Bob Bowman
    The San Augustine Tribune, publisher Webster Hays and his buck.
  • Ela Hockaday More Than a School Omarm by Archie P. McDonald 8/8/04
    Founder of the Miss Hockaday School for Girls in Dallas
  • Mr. Ambassador by Archie P. McDonald 7/14/04
    Edward Aubrey Clark of San Augustine
  • Tragedy of Chief Bowles by Bob Bowman 7/7/04
    "Few historical figures are as tragic as Chief Bowles, the 83-year-old Cherokee Indian chief who died on a Neches River battlefield near Tyler 164 years ago..."
  • Norris Wright Cuney by Archie P. McDonald 7/1/04
    The most remarkable African American leader in Texas in the nineteenth century.
  • Characters by Bob Bowman 6/26/04
    Some people collect antiques. Others collect baseball cards. Personally, I've always been partial to East Texas characters -- the sometimes slightly off-center people who lived lifetimes doing things differently than the rest of us.
  • "Rajah of Swat" - Rogers Hornsby by Archie P. McDonald 5/19/04
  • Fort St Louis by Archie P. McDonald 5/5/04
    The life and death of La Salle.
  • Sailor's Burial by Bob Bowman 4/3/04
    Texas Historical Commission archeologists discovered the sailor's skeletal remains during the 1996 excavation of French explorer Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle's ship, the Belle, which sank in Matagorda Bay in 1686. His remains are now the oldest ever buried in the State Cemetery.
  • Robert and Harriet Potter by Archie P. McDonald 3/24/04
    "There ain¹t no good in men"
  • Texas First Cattle King by Archie P. McDonald 2/23/04
  • The Mighty Hoss by Archie P. McDonald 12/03
    Dan Blocker's story begins and ends in DeKalb, in Bowie County, located in uppermost Northeastern Texas, though most of it played out in West Texas and in Hollywood.
  • Air Pioneer by Bob Bowman 12/03
    In 1921 she became the only black pilot in the world. A year later she became the first black woman to fly over American soil.
  • James Harper Starr by Archie P. McDonald 11/30/03
  • Dick Dowling by Archie P. McDonald 11/6/03
  • Nuggets of History by Bob Bowman 9/03
    Ginger Rogers, La Salle, Custer and his men...
  • The Barrymore Shooting by Bob Bowman 6/03
  • Big Thicket Founder by Bob Bowman 5/03
    While Jackson's role in preserving the unique lands of the Big Thicket is known and appreciated within the ranks of Texas environmentalists, his work is not widely known in East Texas history.
  • George Louis Crocket: Religious Leader and early Historian of East Texas by Archie P. McDonald 4/20/03
  • The Last Hero by Bob Bowman 4/03
  • Adah Isaccs Menken: The lady on the Horse by Archie P. McDonald 12/8/02
  • Fort Parker (and Cynthia Ann Parker) by Bob Bowman 12/02
  • WACs by Archie P. McDonald 9/02
    Women's Army Corps
  • The Big Bopper by Archie P. McDonald 6/29/02
  • The First Governor of Texas by Archie P. McDonald 6/16/02
  • Sharecroppers by Archie P. McDonald 6/1/02
  • The Old Roman, John H. Reagan by Archie P. McDonald 5/15/02
  • East Texas Song Writer Ted Daffan by Bob Bowman 2/16/02
  • The LaSalle Murder Case by Archie P. McDonald 2/18/02
  • William Goyens by Archie P. McDonald 1/26/02
  • A Statue for Lightnin' by Bob Bowman 1/18/02
  • Country Doctor by Bob Bowman 1/5/02
  • When Environmentalism Began by Bob Bowman 12/16/01
  • Heavyweight Champ Jack Johnson by Archie P. McDonald 11/24/01
  • The Wrong Grave by Bob Bowman, 11/4/01
  • Our Celebrities by Bob Bowman, 10/7/01
  • Creating a Gospel Classic by Bob Bowman, 9/9/01
  • Fray Antonio Margil de Jesus: Missionary by Archie P. McDonald, 9/2/01
  • Samuel Bell Maxey by Archie P. McDonald, 7/22/01
  • Radio Days by Bob Bowman, 4/22/01
  • Ralph Yarborough, Liberal Where Liberal Isn't Cool by Archie P. McDonald, 4/15/01
  • The 50,000 Shoeshine by Bob Bowman, 4/8/01
  • Blind Lemon by Bob Bowman, 3/25/01
  • A Journalist's Hero by Bob Bowman, 3/11/01
  • Homer Bryce by Archie P. McDonald, 2/18/01
  • Lyne Taliaferro Barret by Archie P. McDonald, 2/4/01
  • East Texas' Mark Twain by Bob Bowman, 1/14/01
  • Allan Shivers by Archie P. McDonald, 11/26/00
  • The Bootblack King by Bob Bowman, 11/19/00
  • A Ranger's Ranger by Archie P. McDonald, 10/22/00
  • A Tough East Texan by Bob Bowman, 10/1/00
  • Mister Ben by Bob Bowman, 9/27/00
  • James Stephen Hogg by Archie P. McDonald, 8/27/00
Readers' Comments:
Subject: Mister Ben
I just read the column by Bob Bowman entitled "Mister Ben". I enoyed it thoroughly and thought it captured my father very well. Please thank Mr. Bowman for the delightful column - MariBen Ramsey, Legal Counsel/Grants Austin Community Foundation, October 31, 2000

Subject: Thergood's Pine
... I stumble acros [your article] "Thergood's Pine" on the internet. Well I have never been much of a history buff, and since I am African American, I figured not many records existed of my family history past my grandparents. Well needless to say, I was terrifically shocked when I read the wonderful article written by Mr. Bowman and spoke to my father and asked him if we had any family in the east Texas area. He said that he thought we had family in Point Blank but the name was originally spelled "Thergood". Well the article written by Mr. Bowman was about a slave name Collier Thergood from... you guessed it. Point Blank! I just wanted to personally thank Mr. Bowman for sparking a renewed interest in obtaining my family history with his article. Thank you again. ... - Eric Thiergood, May 22, 2001

... I truly appreciate you for running that story and casting a different light on slavery. So often as an African American, I was told at ALL slaves where treated horribly and abused, and while grievous abuse did occurred, I have gained some additional insight by learning about my great, great, great, great (not quite sure how many greats yet- Im still running down that information) grandfather.

Just so that you know about what ever happened to that land after passing through a couple of generations, my great great (again unsure of how many greats) was pressured to sell by some investors. He stood strong in refusing to sell the land the family loved so much. That relative was later found murdered on his porch and "investors" offering to purchase the land the following day. From what I understand that land was sold for pennies on the dollar and was later developed into quiet valuable real estate. Again thank you so very much for the story ... - Eric Thiergood and Family, May 23, 2001

Subject: East Texas celebrities
Your site missed blues player Ivory Joe Hunter. He died in Memphis in 1974 but was born in Kirbyville, Texas in 1914. He was a very prolific writer with some of his songs being covered by Sonny James, Pat Boone, and Elvis Presley. Hunter's songs were on the R & B charts(I Almost Lost My Mind #1 & I Need You So #2 in 1950) , the pop charts (His Since I Met You Baby was # 12), and he later was a regular on the Grand Ole Opry. Check out a web site on him at www.tsimon.com/hunter.htm - Phyllis Martin, November 08, 2002
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