Henniger Reagan as U.S. Senator |
Photographed by Mathew Brady
Henninger Reagan, known as “The Old Roman” served as the Confederate Postmaster
General and also as Confederate Secretary of the Treasury. But his public service
wasn’t limited to the Confederate States. After the war, Reagan served as a U.S.
Senator and while serving in that capacity, he posed for the photographic portrait
(above) by famed Civil War photographer Mathew Brady.|
|The second figure
on the Reagan Monument shows a seated pensive soldier in Roman dress, holding
a Confederate flag on a broken staff. His leather helmet is embossed with stars
representing the thirteen states of the Confederacy.|
Coppini returned to his native Italy only once after arriving in America and
during that trip he supervised the casting of the two figures of this memorial.
The funding for the oversized figures came from the Reagan Chapter of the UDC
although they fell some $2000 short of their goal. The Confederate Veteran (newspaper)
solicited contributions to cover the difference.*
Although Coppini arrived
long after the war was over, he created some of the most poignant statues of that
conflict. His Confederate soldier in Victoria,
Texas is one of the best of its kind. The Reagan Memorial is in Reagan Park
in Palestine, near the intersection
of Reagan and Crockett Streets.
from A Comprehensive Guide to Outdoor Sculpture in Texas by Carrol Morris Little.
Ten Thing You
Should Know About John H. Reagan
Born in Tennessee, he left in 1838 to come to Texas
via Natchez, Mississippi.
He participated in the Cherokee War in 1839 and then worked as a surveyor.
After statehood, he was elected first county judge of Henderson County and in
1847 he became a member of Texas’ second legislature.
He was reelected as Henderson County judge in 1856 and became a US Congressman
from East Texas. In 1859 he won reelection
but resigned his seat to become the Confederate Postmaster General in 1861.
At the end of the Civil War, Reagan was captured with other members of Jefferson
Davis’ cabinet near Abbeville, Georgia.
Held in solitary confinement in Boston for nearly six months, Reagan appealed
to the people of Texas to recognize that they were
back to being a part of the Union, but it didn’t win him friends. He returned
to Texas in December of 1865.
who was proven right on how Texas would fare by opposing
reunification, became known as “The Old Roman.” He was given amnesty, and his
citizenship was restored.
1875 to 1887 Reagan served in Congress before being elected to the U.S. Senate.
- He became
the first Railroad Commissioner of Texas when that body was formed in 1891.
Reagan ran unsuccessfully for governor in 1894 and remained chairman of the Railroad
Commission until 1903 when he retired and returned to Palestine.
He died there two years later of pneumonia.