December 29, 2015

James Shannon Mayfield (1808-1852)

James S. Mayfield, lawyer, legislator, and soldier, was born in Williamson County, Tennessee on November 1, 1808, to John and Polly (Martin) Mayfield.  James Shannon married Sophia Ann Crutcher on July 10, 1833, and the following year the family relocated to Jackson County, Illinois. Between 1834 and 1871 the Mayfield family expanded to include seven children. In 1837 Mayfield arrived in Nacogdoches County, Texas, where he joined the military to combat incursions from Native Americans and began practicing law in Nacogdoches with Joseph M. White. In 1839 he accompanied Albert Sidney Johnston, David Burnet, I. W. Burton, and Thomas J. Rusk as a commission to propose to the Cherokee Indians that they leave Texas upon payment for their improvements by the republic. The Cherokee refused the offer on July 16, 1839, which resulted in hostilities with the military.  Mayfield participated in the ensuing battles as aide-de-camp for Brigadier General K. H. Douglas and authored field reports for Johnston. Mayfield represented Nacogdoches County in the Fifth and Sixth congresses (1840-42) and introduced the Franco-Texian Bill. From February 8, 1841, to September 7, 1841, Mayfield served as secretary of state under Mirabeau B. Lamar, except for the period from April 30 to September 7, when Joseph Waples and Samuel A. Roberts served consecutively in his place. On October 28, 1841, Mayfield relocated his family to La Grange in Fayette County, where he continued to practice law.

During a speech in the Texas House of Representatives on January 4, 1842, Mayfield disparaged fellow congressman David S. Kaufman. The two men exchanged gunfire and Kaufman ultimately died from a wound to the abdomen, but the encounter was considered a fair fight and Mayfield did not face charges. On September 16, 1842, Mayfield assembled a company of fifty-three volunteers from La Grange, to follow Capt. Nicholas Dawson in an attempt to repel Gen. Adrián Woll's Mexican army from San Antonio. His group, joined by others under the command of Jesse Billingsley and W. J. Wallace, arrived at the scene of the Dawson massacre on Salado Creek while it was occurring. Mayfield, as the commanding officer, determined that his group was too far outnumbered and remained in the distance until the following day, when he joined the command of Mathew Caldwell. Mayfield commanded one of the battalions but opposed pursuing Woll further south due to overwhelming force and the inevitable arrival of Mexican reinforcements.

In 1842 Mayfield was a member of the Somervell expedition but did not join the subsequent Mier expedition. Congressman Robert Potter died in 1842 and bequeathed one-third of his estate to Sophia as well as his favorite horse “Shakespeare” to James. In 1843 he presented himself as a candidate for major general of the Texas army but removed himself from consideration because, he said, of ill health. It is probable, however, that accusations of cowardice during the Woll invasion leveled by Mathew Caldwell and Edward Burleson had much to do with his decision. Mayfield represented Fayette County at the Convention of 1845 and in September challenged Burleson to a duel but did not go through with the engagement. In 1846 Mayfield served as an inspector of the La Grange Female Institute and in April he helped organize the Democratic party in Texas. On July 28, 1849, he killed Absolom Bostwick in self-defense during a political argument regarding the special election of the sheriff.  Bostwick’s death led to the discovery of an organized gang of thieves operating from Missouri to the Rio Grande. In July 1850 Mayfield was one of a committee appointed in a meeting at La Grange to consider insurrectionary movements in Santa Fe County. Sophia died in La Grange on March 2, 1852 and James passed away later that year on December 3. The Mayfields were buried in the front yard of their home in La Grange, but relocated to the La Grange Cemetery in 1858. On March 6, 2004, the Daughters of the Republic of Texas held a dedication ceremony to adorn the grave with a bronze medallion identifying Mayfield as a “Defender of the Republic of Texas.” Source

COORDINATES
29° 54.643
-096° 52.109


Old La Grange City Cemetery
La Grange

December 22, 2015

Xavier Blanchard Debray (1818-1895)

Xavier Debray, soldier, was born in Selestat (Schlettstadt), near Epinal, France, on January 25, 1818, the son of Nicholas Blanchard, a government official, and his wife Catherine Benezech. He is often said to have attended the French Military Academy at St. Cyr and then served in the French diplomatic service until he immigrated to the United States via New York on September 25, 1848. St. Cyr, however, has no record of his attending. He moved to Texas in 1852, settled in San Antonio, and was naturalized there on April 5, 1855. That same year he established a Spanish newspaper with A. A. Lewis called El Bejareño. Later he worked in the General Land Office as a translator. He also established an academy that prospered until the Civil War began. In 1859 Debray ran a strong but losing race for mayor of Austin. After brief service with Company B, Fourth Texas Infantry, Debray served as aide-de-camp to Governor Edward Clark during the summer of 1861. In September, 1861, he was commissioned major of the Second Texas Infantry. On December 7, 1861 he was elected lieutenant colonel and commander of Debray's Texas Cavalry battalion and on March 17, 1862, colonel of the Twenty-sixth Texas Cavalry.

From January to June of 1862 he commanded on Galveston Island. In July he assumed command of the military sub-district of Houston in the Department of Texas. He commanded some of the Confederate troops in the recapture of Galveston on January 1, 1863. On February 13, 1863, he was relieved of command of the eastern subdivision of Texas in the Trans-Mississippi Department, and on May 30 he took command of the troops on Galveston Island in the District of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona. British observer Arthur Fremantle found Debray “a broad shouldered Frenchman, and a very good fellow,” who'd left France because of political differences with Emperor Napoleon. Although he was assigned temporary command of the eastern sub-district of Texas in June 1863, by July 1 he had resumed his position on Galveston Island. Debray led his regiment in the Red River campaign in Louisiana during the spring of 1864. For his participation in the battles of Mansfield and Pleasant Hill, he was appointed brigadier general by General Edmund Kirby Smith on April 13, 1864, but this was never confirmed by President Jefferson Davis. Nevertheless, he commanded a brigade consisting of the Twenty-third, Twenty-sixth, and Thirty-second Texas Cavalry regiments. Debray discharged his men on March 24, 1865. After the war he moved to Houston and then to Galveston, working as a teacher and a bookkeeper before eventually returning to his position as translator in the General Land Office. He died in Austin on January 6, 1895, and was buried in the State Cemetery. Source

COORDINATES
30° 15.905
-097° 43.643

Republic Hill
Texas State Cemetery
Austin

December 15, 2015

Corwin Anthony "Amazing Grace" Hawkins (1965-1994)

Corwin Hawkins attended St. Peter's Catholic School in Houston, and, after graduation, decided he wanted to be an entertainer. He was fascinated by the drag culture and began competing - and quickly started winning - female impersonator competitions. In 1991, his favorite and most popular character "Amazing Grace" was crowned Miss Gay Texas; the next year he took the title of Texas Entertainer of the Year and went on to capture the 1992 National Entertainer of the Year title in Louisville, Kentucky. He was also awarded an invitational tryout at the L. A. Improv. After appearing on Def Comedy Jam, BET and HBO Comedy specials, he was discovered by Keenan Ivory Wayans and hired for the role of "Wayman" in the film A Low Down Dirty Shame, a part originally written for RuPaul. Sadly, he was unable to capitalize on his new-found fame; he passed away on August 5, 1994 at Baylor Hospital in Dallas of pneumonia. He was 29 years old.


COORDINATES
29° 33.780
-095° 21.116

Section 18
Houston Memorial Gardens
Pearland

December 8, 2015

Placido Olivarri (1815-1894)

Placido Olivarri, a famed scout for the Texas Revolutionary Army, son of Simon Olivarri and Guadalupe Garza de Torres, was born in San Antonio, Texas, in February 1815. The Olivarri family initially arrived in San Antonio when José Olivarri, from the Basque region of Spain, established himself in the city as one of the first settlers. Placido Olivarri is most famous for his service as a scout and guide for the Texas Revolutionary Army under Sam Houston. His proficiency as a scout was so great that Gen. Martín Perfecto de Cos of the Mexican Army offered a substantial bounty for Olivarri’s capture, dead or alive. During the Texas Revolution, Mexican sympathizers in San Antonio tried to apprehend Olivarri, but he was able to evade capture by concealing himself on Bowen’s Island on the San Antonio River. Following the Texas Revolution, Olivarri became a landowner and wagon train manager in San Antonio. Texas General Land Office records show that he received a certificate for one-third of a league of land in February 1838. Olivarri was married twice. His first wife, Juana Padillo y Olivarri, was born in 1816 in Bexar County and died around December 1862. She left her estate to her natural son born of a previous marriage. After her death, Placido Olivarri married Micaela Jimenes (or Ximenes), who was born in June 1844 and lived until 1917. Together, they had fourteen children. Late in his life, Olivarri was a member of the Sociedad Mutualista Mexicana. He was listed in San Antonio city directories in the 1880s and into the early 1890s as a “ranchman.” The San Antonio Daily Express on May 2, 1892, listed a Placido Olivarri (possibly Olivarri himself or his son) as chairman of his voting precinct. Olivarri lived in San Antonio throughout his life, and died on September 8, 1894. He was buried in the San Fernando Cemetery No. 1. The Texas Centennial Commission erected a Centennial marker at his grave in 1936.

COORDINATES
29° 41.548
-098° 51.215

Block 3
San Fernando Cemetery No. 1
San Antonio

December 1, 2015

The Von Erich Family

The Von Erichs were a wrestling family, best known for their dominance in the 1980s and the so-called "Von Erich Curse". They all primarily wrestled in World Class Championship Wrestling (WCCW), the organization their father Fritz ran and owned in Dallas. They are all buried together in the same section of the cemetery.

Fritz Von Erich was born Jack Barton Adkisson on August 16, 1929 in Jewett, Texas. Originally trained by Stu Hart, Fritz became a top star in many National Wrestling Alliance (NWA) promotions, most notably in St. Louis and in World Class Championship Wrestling (WCCW). He held a variation of the AWA World Heavyweight Championship at one time in the 1960s. Despite never winning the NWA World Heavyweight Championship, he maintained his presence within the NWA, holding many other major belts. Fritz also served shortly as NWA President in the 1970s, as well as President of WCCW when it moved to Dallas, Texas. Fritz was also a major part of Japanese wrestling, where he was known as "Tetsu no Tsume" - The Iron Claw - and helped rebuild the business after the death of Rikidōzan. On September 10, 1997, Fritz died of lung cancer that had spread to his brain.



COORDINATES
32° 47.257
-096° 43.146

Hilltop Section
Grove Hill Memorial Park
Dallas


"The Yellow Rose of Texas" David Von Erich was the third son of Fritz Von Erich. He was born David Alan Adkisson on July 22, 1958 in Dallas, Texas. David worked in the World Class Championship Wrestling promotion with the rest of his family. It was there that he faced off with Harley Race and later Ric Flair several times for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship (never winning), as well as teamed with brothers Kevin and Kerry against their mortal enemies The Fabulous Freebirds. David also wrestled in Missouri, winning the Missouri Heavyweight Championship on a couple of occasions. From late 1981 to mid-1982, David wrestled in the Florida territory to show that he could work as a heel. This run was successful, with David enjoying brief reigns as both as singles and tag team champion. David died on February 10, 1984 in Tokyo, Japan of acute enteritis. Ric Flair wrote in his autobiography, To Be the Man, that "everyone in wrestling believes" that it was a drug overdose that really killed him and that Bruiser Brody (the wrestler who found David) disposed of the narcotics by flushing them down a toilet before the police arrived. Mick Foley also claims that he died from an apparent drug overdose. A tribute show was held a couple of months later in his honor, during which his younger brother, Kerry Von Erich, won the NWA World Title from Ric Flair.

COORDINATES
32° 47.264
-096° 43.146

Hilltop Section
Grove Hill Memorial Park
Dallas


Kerry Von Erich was the fourth son of Fritz Von Erich. He was born Kerry Gene Adkisson on February 3, 1960 in Niagara Falls, New York. Known as "The Modern Day Warrior" and "The Texas Tornado", Kerry was by far the best-known of the Von Erich family. Much like his brothers, Kerry spent the majority of his career wrestling in World Class Championship Wrestling. Among the many major feuds he had were those against Gino Hernandez, Iceman Parsons, Chris Adams and The Fabulous Freebirds. Kerry won the NWA World Heavyweight Title from Ric Flair at the David Von Erich Memorial Parade of Champions, a tribute show to his deceased older brother. He lost the belt three weeks later to Flair. Kerry also wrestled for several months in both the World Wrestling Federation (where he won the WWF Intercontinental Championship at SummerSlam on August 27, 1990) and Global Wrestling Federation. Kerry committed suicide via a .44 caliber gunshot to the heart on February 18, 1993 on his father's ranch in Denton County, Texas. There is a marker placed by his father Fritz of an angel on the spot Kerry had shot himself. Bret Hart states in his biography, Hitman: My Real Life in the Cartoon World of Wrestling, that Kerry had told him months before about his plans, that he had wanted to follow his late brothers, that they were calling him. His marriage had fallen apart as well and he thought his death was inevitable. He is buried alongside his father.

COORDINATES
32° 47.257
-096° 43.146

Hilltop Section
Grove Hill Memorial Park
Dallas


Mike Von Erich was the fifth son of Fritz Von Erich. He was born Michael Brett Adkisson on March 2, 1964 in Dallas, Texas. Mike replaced David in the feud the Von Erichs had with The Fabulous Freebirds following David's death. According to the documentary Heroes of World Class, Mike wanted to work for World Class as a cameraman and had no interest in being in the ring full-time. His only previous involvement on-screen was being involved in an angle where Ric Flair insulted him and wrestled him as a run-up, to what was planned, as David winning the NWA World Heavyweight Championship, but Fritz forced him into the ring after David's death. Mike was married on February 14, 1985 to Shani Danette Garza. Shortly after his wedding, Mike suffered a shoulder injury on a tour of Israel and was forced to have surgery. After the surgery it was discovered that he was suffering from Toxic Shock Syndrome, a rarity in men. He had to retire from wrestling after not being able to return to the ring at full strength. He committed suicide on April 12, 1987 by overdosing on tranquilizers.

COORDINATES
32° 47.264
-096° 43.146

Hilltop Section
Grove Hill Memorial Park
Dallas


Born Chris Barton Adkisson on September 30, 1969 in Dallas, Texas, Chris Von Erich was the youngest of the Von Erich family. Due to his short stature (5'4"), asthma, and extremely brittle bones that were prone to breaking, Chris was never able to reach the success his father and brothers reached. He made many attempts to succeed in the squared circle due to an incredible love of wrestling that kept him going despite numerous injuries. He managed one major feud with Percy Pringle in the USWA/World Class, but his career didn't take off like the rest of the family's. On occasion, he, his brothers Kerry and Kevin, and Chris Adams wrestled tag-team matches against Percy Pringle and Steve Austin, but Chris only wrestled Pringle, while the much more athletic Adams, Kerry or Kevin wrestled Austin. After several years of not being able to succeed in the wrestling business, Chris became depressed and frustrated. He was also heartbroken over the loss of his brother, Mike. In 1991, 18 days before his 22nd birthday, he committed suicide via gunshot to the head. Source

COORDINATES
32° 47.264
-096° 43.146

Hilltop Section
Grove Hill Memorial Park
Dallas

November 24, 2015

Rosalyn Renee Brunswick-McDuffie (1969-2008)

Rosalyn McDuffie was born in Los Angeles on January 19, 1969 to Joseph and Rose Brunswick. In 1970, the Brunswicks relocated to Houston. She graduated from Sam Houston High School in 1987, then furthered her education by becoming a certified dental technician from Texas Dental School. At the age of seventeen, Rosalyn sang with a band called Leon Mitcheson & Company. Mitcheson took her to Los Angeles to collaborate with Quincy Jones and Larry Dunn on a solo soul project, but after some reconsideration, she decided to leave a soul music career behind and returned to Houston. She became active in the local Christian theatrical community, performing in the plays I Need a Man, Momma I'm Sorry, Sneaky, and Fake Friends. On June 1, 1996, she married pastor Efrem Z. McDuffie. Her recording career began at Abundant Life Cathedral as their lead vocalist. In 2003 Rosalyn recorded her independent solo release Just Rosalyn featuring the hit single Speak to Me, which she performed on Gospel Superfest and at religious conferences throughout the country, launching her solo career nationally. In 2005, she and a 350-voice choir opened the Houston meeting of the Congress of Christian Education of the National Baptist Convention USA. In 2006 Rosalyn and Rhonda McLemore, who were background singers for gospel icon Donnie McClurkin, agreed to join forces and start a group called Lyric Sings. Lyric Sings released a project Brand New Day on Canvas Records which garnered them a Stellar Award nomination for Best New Artist. She also recorded another solo album, Together We'll Stand, with Al Jarreau. Later that year she and her husband founded the Willie C. McDuffie Adolescent Treatment Center for at risk youth. On July 26, 2008, Rosalyn died of ovarian cancer at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. She was only 39.

COORDINATES
29° 57.584
-095° 24.701

Section 19
Earthman Resthaven Cemetery
Houston

November 17, 2015

Joffre James "Jeff" Cross (1918-1997)

Infielder Jeff Cross signed as an amateur free agent with the St. Louis Cardinals before the 1938 season and spent five years in the minor leagues before getting his first look at major league pitching with the Cardinals on September 27, 1942. He appeared in one game for the team, managed one hit in four tries, and spent the next three years (1943-1945) with the United States Navy during World War II. Jeff returned to the St. Louis Cardinals after the war and was used mainly as a back-up infielder in 1946 and 1947 before being purchased by the Chicago Cubs on May 2, 1948. Jeff appeared in 18 games for the Cubs and was sent to the Texas League Shreveport Sports where he appeared in 81 outings and called it a career at the seasons end. Cross's major league stats showed he appeared in 119 games and hit at a .162 clip. He did better in the minors hitting at a .250 number while appearing in 645 games. Jeff's best batting average came in 1939 when he hit .288 with four home runs for the Mobile Shippers of the class B Southeastern League. Jeff played with five different clubs during his six seasons in the minors. After baseball Cross worked forty years in the insurance business in Houston, retiring in 1988. Cross passed away on July 23, 1997 in Huntsville, TX. Source

COORDINATES
29° 78.340
-095° 61.414

Chapel Of The Oaks Mausoleum
Memorial Oaks Cemetery
Houston

November 10, 2015

Thomas Barnett (1798-1843)

Thomas Barnett, pioneer settler and public official, was born on January 18, 1798, in Logan County, Kentucky. Before 1821 he moved to Livingston County, Kentucky, where he was sheriff for two years. In 1823 he moved to Texas as one of Stephen F. Austin's Old Three Hundred and on July 10, 1824, received title to a league of land on the east bank of the Brazos River in what is now southeastern Fort Bend County. The 1826 census of Austin's colony noted that Barnett owned two slaves. About 1825 he married Mrs. Nancy Spencer. They had six children. On February 10, 1828, Barnett was elected comisario of the district of Victoria in the ayuntamiento of San Felipe de Austin. In 1829 he was elected alcalde; he represented Austin Municipality at the Consultation and on November 18, 1835, was elected a supernumerary member of the General Council. Barnett was one of the three delegates from Austin Municipality to the Convention of 1836 at Washington-on-the-Brazos, where he signed the Texas Declaration of Independence. On December 20, 1836, President Sam Houston appointed him chief justice of Austin County. Barnett represented Fort Bend County in the House of the Third and Fourth congresses of the republic, 1838-40. He died at his home in Fort Bend County on September 20, 1843, and was buried in the family cemetery. Source

COORDINATES
29° 58.625
-95° 88.680


Barnett Cemetery
Rosenberg

November 3, 2015

Rosie Lee Moore Hall (1899-1967)

Born in Robertson County, Texas, in 1899, Hall was a native of the community of Pin Oak, located between Hearne and Wheelock. She married Ollie Chambers at age 17 and remained in Pin Oak. She left Hearne in her late 20s when her marriage failed, losing contact with her family for 19 years. By then she had made Oklahoma City her home and was working for Quaker Oats. While working in the advertising department of Quaker Oats she learned of the search for a new Aunt Jemima. According to family and friends, she perfectly exemplified the trademark, which was why her round smiling face adorned Aunt Jemima products for almost two decades. From 1950 to 1967 Hall continued the tradition started by other Aunt Jemimas and traveled the country showing off her culinary talents by making melt-in-your-mouth pancakes. She was at her best when she was cooking pancakes. And cook pancakes she did: at world’s fairs and annually at the Texas State Fair; everywhere she went, she jovially served her syrup and buckwheat cakes. During her last years at Quakers Oats, Hall told her family she was excited about a new syrup recipe she was creating. After she began the role of Aunt Jemima, her family looked forward to her annual visit home during Christmas. They would gather at the family home and sing Christmas carols, while Hall would talk about her experiences as Aunt Jemima. Her sisters say she was perfect for the job because she liked people so much. Her family never saw any of her official demonstrations, but they were always delighted when she returned home, because she would cook her famous pancakes for them. The last time she visited was Christmas 1966. Two months later she suffered a heart attack on her way to church and died on February 12, 1967. An elaborate funeral was held in Oklahoma City, and she was buried in the family plot in the Colony Cemetery near Wheelock, Texas. Although she died over a quarter of a century ago, Hall had no grave marker until 1988. A special ceremony was held May 7, 1988, and her grave was declared a historical landmark. Hall’s reign as Aunt Jemima is significant because she was the last “living” Aunt Jemima.. Source

COORDINATES
30° 54.717
-096° 31.398


Hammond Colony Cemetery
Black Jack

October 27, 2015

Marvin Ivan "Buck" Barrow (1903-1933)

Buck Barrow was born in Jones Prairie, Marion County, Texas, the third child of Henry and Cumie Barrow. He got the nickname Buck from an aunt, who said he ran around like a horse. In the early 1920s, Marvin went to Dallas, ostensibly to work for his brother Clyde repairing cars, but he quickly became part of the West Dallas petty-criminal underworld. He began his criminal career as a cockfighter, but moved up quickly; just before Christmas 1926, Marvin and Clyde were arrested with a truck full of stolen turkeys they intended to sell. Marvin took the rap for himself and his brother and went to jail for a week. He met his future wife, Blanche, on November 11, 1929 in West Dallas and she soon became part of the loose Barrow gang. He was shot and captured two weeks later after a burglary and given four years in the state prison. He escaped from the Ferguson Prison Farm on March 8, 1930 by simply walking out and stealing a guard's car. He and Blanche married on July 3, 1931 in Oklahoma. Blanche convinced him to return to prison and serve the rest of his term, which he did. After two years, he was issued a pardon by the governor, mostly due to the lobbying done by his wife and mother, partly due to the effort to reduce prison overcrowding. Upon his release on March 22, 1933, he and Blanche joined Clyde, his girlfriend Bonnie and W. D. Jones and began the crime spree the Barrow gang became notorious for. A few robberies and murders later, Buck was mortally wounded during a shootout with the police at the Red Crown Tourist Court in Platte City, Missouri. He hung on for a few days in a delirium until July 29, 1933, when he died of pneumonia aggravated by his head injury.

Note: Marvin's year of birth on his stone is incorrect. His mother gave the engravers her daughter Nell's birth year by mistake.

COORDINATES
32° 45.957
-096° 84.663


Western Heights Cemetery
Dallas

October 20, 2015

Clyde Chesnut Barrow (1909-1934)

Clyde Chesnut Barrow, outlaw and partner of Bonnie Parker, was born just outside Telico, Texas, on March 24, 1909, the son of Henry Barrow. The family moved to Dallas in 1922, and in 1926 Barrow was first arrested for stealing an automobile. During the next four years he committed a string of robberies in and around Dallas. In 1930 he met Bonnie Parker, but their relationship was cut short when Barrow was arrested and jailed in Waco on charges of burglary. While awaiting trial he escaped with a handgun slipped to him by Bonnie and fled north, but was captured a week later in Middletown, Ohio. Barrow was found guilty and sentenced to a fourteen-year term at hard labor in the state penitentiary. Unwilling to endure the work at one of the state-operated plantations, he had another convict chop two toes off his left foot with an axe. Ironically, a short time later in February 1932, Barrow was given a general parole and released. Reunited with Bonnie and joined by bank robber Raymond Hamilton, Barrow began a series of violent holdups in the Southwest and Midwest. He and his accomplices made national headlines after murdering a number of people, including several law officers, and their exploits continued to hold the public's fascination for the next two years.

   After Hamilton was captured in Michigan, Bonnie and Clyde were joined by Clyde's brother, Buck, who had been recently released from prison, and his wife, Blanche (Caldwell) Barrow. They rented a small garage apartment in Joplin, Missouri, as a hideout, but suspicious neighbors tipped off the police. On the afternoon of April 13, 1933, law officers raided the hideaway. In the shootout that followed, two lawmen were killed. The gang narrowly escaped, but they left behind a roll of film from which many of the famous photographs of the pair originated. For most of the remainder of their brief criminal careers, Clyde and Bonnie were constantly on the move, committing one robbery after the next while managing to stay one step ahead of the law. In Platte City, Missouri, the gang once again was ambushed by police officers; Buck Barrow was killed, and Blanche was taken into custody, but Bonnie and Clyde escaped once again. In January 1934 the two made a daring attack on the Eastham Prison Farm in Texas to free Raymond Hamilton and another prisoner, Henry Methvin, in the process machine-gunning several guards and killing one. With Hamilton and Methvin in tow, Barrow and Parker went on another robbery rampage in Indiana. After a short time, however, Hamilton quarreled with Barrow and struck out on his own, leaving Methvin with the gang.

   Officials, led by former Texas Ranger Francis A. (Frank) Hamer and FBI special agent L. A. Kindell, finally tracked down the Barrow gang at Methvin's father's farm near Arcadia, Louisiana. Hamer arranged a roadside ambush in Gibsland, Louisiana. On May 23, 1934, at 9:15 a.m., Clyde and Bonnie, traveling alone, were killed in a barrage of 167 bullets. The bodies were taken to Arcadia and later put on public display in Dallas before being buried in their respective family burial plots. In later years Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker were sometimes characterized as latter-day Robin Hoods. Their exploits became the basis of more than a half dozen movies, most notably Bonnie and Clyde in 1967, starring Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway as the title characters. The originals were often compared with the other criminal figures of the Great Depression era, including John Dillinger and Al Capone. Barrow and Parker, however, despite their later glamorous image, were both ruthless killers who displayed very little in the way of a social conscience or remorse. In marked contrast to the legendary gangsters of the era, they were in reality small-time hoods whose largest haul was only $1,500. Source

COORDINATES
32° 45.957
-096° 84.663


Western Heights Cemetery
Dallas

October 13, 2015

Bonnie Elizabeth Parker (1910-1934)

Bonnie Parker, outlaw partner of Clyde Barrow, was born at Rowena, Texas, on October 1, 1910, to Henry and Emma Parker. She had an older brother, Hubert (Buster), and a younger sister, Billie. Her father, a bricklayer, died in 1914, and Emma Parker moved the family to "Cement City" in West Dallas to live closer to relatives. In the public schools Bonnie was an honor student. She enjoyed writing poetry and reading romance novels. At four-feet-ten and eighty-five pounds, she hardly looked like a future legendary criminal. In 1926 she married her longtime sweetheart, Roy Thornton. For the next several years, they suffered a tumultuous marriage; however, she refused to divorce him. Bonnie worked at Marco's Cafe in Dallas until the cafe closed in November 1929. About this time Thornton was sent to prison for a five-year sentence. Bonnie had "Roy and Bonnie" tattooed above her right knee to commemorate her marriage to Thornton. She met Barrow in January 1930. Their romance was interrupted when Barrow was jailed a month later. During this time she wrote to him pleading with him to stay out of trouble upon his release. In early March she smuggled into his cell a pistol, which he used to escape. He was recaptured in Middletown, Ohio, after a robbery and sent to Eastham Prison Farm in Crockett on April 21, 1930. He was released in February 1932, more bent on destruction than before; and Bonnie was more determined than ever to prove her loyalty to him, even to the extent of assuming his manner of living.

   Upon his release Parker and Barrow began robbing grocery stores, filling stations, and small banks. In March 1932 Bonnie was captured in a failed robbery attempt and jailed in Kaufman, Texas. Clyde murdered merchant J. W. Butcher of Hillsboro on April 27, 1932. On June 17, 1932, the grand jury met in Kaufman and no-billed Bonnie, thus securing her release. Within a few weeks she connected with Clyde. Once again, they were on the run. The couple killed two officers in Atoka, Oklahoma, where they had attended a dance and were apprehended in the parking lot. For a while they swept through the Midwest and Southwest challenging the law in Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Missouri. They gunned down a grocery-store owner in Sherman, Texas, a citizen in Temple, and another law officer in Dallas. Law enforcement agencies from several states initiated a manhunt but to no avail. The couple temporarily settled down in a small stone bungalow in Joplin, Missouri, with Barrow's brother and sister-in-law. Not surprisingly, they were rowdy residents, and the neighbors began complaining to the police. Suspicious that this could be the Barrow gang, the officers promptly responded. Upon their arrival they were met by the four inhabitants and a barrage of bullets. After a bloody shoot-out, Bonnie and Clyde escaped. They left behind two more dead lawmen and six rolls of film, from which many of the famous photographs of the couple came.

   Bonnie and Clyde traveled constantly, throughout Kansas, Missouri, Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Iowa, Illinois, and Arkansas. On June 10, 1933, Bonnie was burned after their car rolled over an embankment near Wellington, Texas, and was treated at a nearby farmhouse. Officials sent to investigate were kidnapped and later freed in Oklahoma. Near Alma, Arkansas, the two killed the town marshal. Later, their gang holed up in Platte City, Missouri. In yet another bloody face-off with the law, Clyde's brother was killed, and his sister-in-law was taken into custody. In January 1934 Parker and Barrow helped their buddy Raymond Hamilton escape from Eastham Farm, and a guard was killed. At this time the head of the Texas prison system and the governor hired former Texas Ranger captain Francis (Frank) Hamer to track down the couple. By the middle of 1934 Hamer and his associates had begun to follow Bonnie and Clyde. One of the couple's most blatant murders occurred on Easter Sunday, 1934, on the outskirts of Grapevine, Texas. According to a witness, a Ford halted alongside a public highway. The occupants of the vehicle, laughing and talking among themselves, tossed whiskey bottles out of the windows. When the two highway patrolmen stopped their motorcycles to check on the "stalled" car, the people in the car leveled guns at the officers and opened fire. Bonnie reportedly walked over to one of the officers and rolled him over with one foot, raised her sawed-off shotgun, fired two more shots, point-blank, at the officer's head and exclaimed, "look-a-there, his head bounced just like a rubber ball." Less than a week later, on April 6, 1934, Parker and Barrow committed their last murder by killing a constable in Commerce, Oklahoma. Afterward they were in continuous flight, with law officers in pursuit. They drove into a trap near their hide-out at Black Lake, Louisiana, on May 23, 1934, at 9:15 A.M. and were gunned down in a barrage of 167 bullets. Bonnie Parker was found riddled with bullets, holding a machine gun, a sandwich, and a pack of cigarettes; Clyde Barrow, barely recognizable, was clutching a revolver. The car was taken to Arcadia, Louisiana, and the bodies were later delivered to Dallas. Thousands viewed the mangled bodies and the car of the legendary lovers. Finally, amid public clamor and hysteria, the bodies were buried in their respective families' burial plots. Source

COORDINATES
32° 52.045
-096° 51.835

Block 4
Crown Hill Memorial Park
Dallas

October 6, 2015

William Templeton Millican (1780-1843)

William Millican, pioneer, attorney, and public official, the son of Nancy Jane (McNeil) and Robert Hemphill Millican, was born in Spartanburg County, South Carolina, in the 1780s. As a member of Stephen F. Austin's Old Three Hundred colonists he arrived in Texas in December 1821, in company with other members of the Millican family. He received title to one sitio of land in what is now Brazos County on July 16, 1824. Horatio Chriesman had surveyed the land by October, but by September 1825 Millican had moved to land purchased from Henry Whitesides and Jack C. Davis and was in conflict with Henry and Boland Whitesides over his title. The census of March 1826 listed Millican as a farmer and stock raiser, aged between twenty-five and forty. His household included his wife, Libitha, two sons, two daughters, and one slave. In July 1826 his home was a polling place for the election of delegates to a provisional judiciary for the colony. He was elected as a delegate from the Washington district to the Consultation of 1835. In 1839 he was elected justice of the peace for Washington County. He was appointed agent for various Washington County residents in 1840, and in 1841 he was elected justice of the peace for Navasota County. Millican served in the Texas army during the Texas Revolution and was to receive a bounty warrant for 320 acres from the secretary of war for service from April 25, 1836, to July 25, 1836. He died in September 1843, however, and the Brazos County land was not patented to him until October 10, 1845. In a letter filed in the probate court of Brazos County, his brother, Dr. Elliott McNeil Millican, stated that their mother was William Millican's only heir-at-law, and she received title to his land. At his death, Millican was survived by his wife, three sons, and four daughters.

COORDINATES
30° 28.283
-096° 21.030


Weaver Cemetery
Millican

September 29, 2015

Walter Howard "Slim" McGrew (1899-1967)

Slim McGrew was born August 5, 1899, in Yoakum, a small southeastern Texas town. He was recruited by the Washington Senators as a Major League Baseball pitcher in 1922, and made his professional debut on April 18. An imposing figure on the mound, the 6 ft. 7½ inch McGrew held the record for tallest baseball player of the era. In 1924, he was sent down to the Memphis Chickasaws, the Senators' farm league team, where he went 15-5 with a 2.84 ERA. After a disappointing season, McGrew was released. He played his last professional game on June 8, 1924 for the Senators, ending a 30 inning, three year career. McGrew passed away in Houston on August 21, 1967 at the age of 68 and buried in Humble.

COORDINATES
29° 57.631
-095° 16.095


Section 9
Rosewood Cemetery
Humble

September 22, 2015

Charles Stanfield Taylor (1808-1865)

Charles S. Taylor, member of the Texas Revolutionary Committee of Correspondence and signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence, was born in London, England, in 1808. His parents died while he was young, and he was reared by an uncle. Taylor immigrated to the United States in 1828, and from New York City he moved to Nacogdoches where he established a mercantile business. On April 1, 1830, he took his Mexican citizenship oath in Nacogdoches and stated that he was Catholic and unmarried at the time. Taylor participated in the battle of Nacogdoches and represented Nacogdoches in the Convention of 1832. In 1833 he moved to San Augustine, where he was elected alcalde on January 1, 1834. In summer 1834 he returned to Nacogdoches, and on April 25, 1835, he was appointed land commissioner for San Augustine and issued land titles until the Texas Revolution began. He was one of the four representatives from Nacogdoches at the Convention of 1836 and signed the Texas Declaration of Independence. Taylor left Texas after he signed the Declaration of Independence and stayed in Louisiana until the revolution was over. Two of his children died during this time. He was appointed chief justice of Nacogdoches County on December 20, 1836.

In November 1838 he was nominated by President Sam Houston to run the boundary line between Texas and the United States, however Mirabeau B. Lamar succeeded Houston as president, and the nomination was withdrawn. Taylor was licensed to practice law in the republic in 1839. He was appointed district attorney by President Lamar but was not confirmed by the Senate. He was a candidate for Congress in 1845 but was defeated by three votes. He was elected county treasurer of Nacogdoches County in 1850 and 1852. Taylor boarded in the home of Nicholas Adolphus Sterne when he first arrived in Nacogdoches and on May 28, 1831, married Mrs. Sterne's sister, Anna Marie Rouff, daughter of John R. Rouff of Weerenberg, Germany. She was born on March 1, 1814, and died on February 8, 1873. They became parents of thirteen children, some of which died of exposure during the Runaway Scrape. Their sons, Charles Travis, Milam, William Adolphus, and Lawrence S., joined the Confederate forces in 1861. Lawrence married the daughter of Dr. Robert A. Irion. Charles S. Taylor was chief justice of Nacogdoches County from August 1860 until his death on November 1, 1865. He was a member of Milam Lodge No. 2 and an original member of the Grand Lodge of Texas. In 1936 the Texas Centennial Commission erected a joint monument at the graves of Taylor and his wife in Oak Grove Cemetery, Nacogdoches, Texas. Source

Note: His middle name is misspelled on his stone.

COORDINATES
31° 36.166
-094° 38.952


Oak Grove Cemetery
Nacogdoches

September 15, 2015

Lisa Gaye (1935-2016)

Born Leslie Gaye Griffin on March 6, 1935 in Denver, Colorado, Lisa came from a show-business family. Her mother, Marguerite, performed in vaudeville theaters and nightclubs as Margaret Allen, and Lisa's three siblings all went into acting - sister Debralee, who became Debra Paget; sister Marcia, who became Teala Loring; and brother Frank, who spent a decade as an actor before becoming a leading makeup artist. When Marcia landed a film contract with Paramount, the family moved to Los Angeles and Leslie was taught dancing and acting at the Hollywood Professional School. She made her stage début as a dancer in The Merry Wives of Windsor, starring Charles Coburn, at the Los Angeles Biltmore Theatre. At the start of her Universal contract in January 1953 (her mother insisted that she and her sister work for different studios to avoid competition) she adopted the stage name Lisa Gaye and was given lessons in drama, singing, dancing, fencing and horse riding. She made her feature-film debut in a bit part in The Glenn Miller Story (1954) as one of a mob of teenagers. She was Audie Murphy’s reserved fiancée in Drums Across the River (1954), co-starred in Shake Rattle and Rock (1956) and seemed well on her way to mainstream success; however, the studio dropped her after little more than two years, partially because a back injury meant that she had to wear a brace.

Gaye left the studio system and appeared alongside Dean Martin in Ten Thousand Bedrooms (1957), in which she dances to an Italian version of Rock Around the Clock. In La Cara del Terror (1962), a Spanish thriller, she played an escaped asylum patient whose disfigured face is restored to beauty by Fernando Rey’s pioneering doctor - until the serum wears off, of course. Night of Evil (1962) gave Gaye her only top billing, as a raped high-school cheerleader who becomes a stripper, then commits armed robbery. Night of Evil received dismal reviews on release and she decided to seek other outlets for her acting. She broke into television in the mid-50s, first in small cameo roles in sitcoms like The Burns and Allen Show, but it was in Westerns that Gaye found her niche. Her horse-riding experience proved invaluable as she dipped into episodes of more than 20 popular series, from Annie Oakley (1956), Northwest Passage (1958), Cheyenne (1960), Rawhide (1960), Maverick (1961) and The Wild Wild West (1966-1967). In Death Valley Days alone, between 1960 and 1969, she acted in 10 different roles. In 1955, Lisa married Bently Ware, a business executive, and in 1970 retired from acting to raise their daughter, Janell. Following her husband's death from a heart attack in 1977, she moved to Houston, where she worked for nineteen years as a receptionist at KETH Channel 14, a local religious television station. Gaye passed away on July 14, 2016 and encrypted at the Houston National Cemetery.

COORDINATES
29° 55.837
-095° 26.765

Section C-14
Houston National Cemetery
Houston

September 8, 2015

Frank Octavius Mancuso (1918-2007)

Born May 23, 1918 in Houston, Texas, Frank Mancuso began playing baseball in 1937 in the minor league system of the New York Giants. After hitting .417 for Fort Smith in 1938, the Giants moved him up to their major league roster for the entire 1939 season as a third string catcher, but he did not get into a single game during the regular season. That disappointment was offset by the opportunity he had to warm up pitcher Carl Hubbell, and sharing the company of other great Giants like OF Mel Ott and manager Bill Terry. He was sent back to the minors before the 1940 season. After hitting .300 or more in three minor league seasons, Mancuso entered the U.S. Army as a paratrooper at Fort Benning, Georgia in December 1942. In 1943, he suffered a broken back and leg when his chute opened late and improperly. He almost died from his injuries and was subsequently discharged from the service for medical reasons. A part of his injury was an unfortunate condition for a catcher, where in looking straight up caused him to lose the flow of oxygen to the brain, and he would pass out. As a result, he never regained all of his mobility after the parachute jump and was never responsible for catching pop-ups. Mancuso spent the rest of his life with back and legs pains, but he worked himself back into shape and returned to baseball in 1944 as one of two catchers for the only St. Louis Browns club to ever win an American League pennant. He shared duties with Red Hayworth, hitting .205 with one home run and 24 RBI in 88 games. The Browns lost to the St. Louis Cardinals in the 1944 World Series in six games, but Mancuso hit .667 and collected one RBI in injury-limited pinch-hitting duty. His most productive season came in 1945, when he posted career-numbers in games (119), batting average (.268), RBI (38) and runs (39). In 1946 he hit .240 with a career-high three home runs in 87 games. He played his last major-league season with the Washington Senators in 1947 at the age of 29.

   From 1948 to 1955, Mancuso earned further respect as a catcher for top minor league clubs like Toledo and Beaumont, among others, and with the 1953 Houston Buffs, a minors club that preceded the Colt .45s & Astros. He also played winter baseball in the Venezuelan League during the 1950-51 and 1951-52 seasons. In his first season, he hit .407 with 49 RBI and also became the first player in the league to hit 10 home runs in a 42-game schedule. In a four-year major league career, Mancuso played in 337 games, accumulating 241 hits in 1,002 at bats for a .241 career batting average along with 5 home runs, 98 runs batted in and a .314 on-base percentage. He posted a ,987 fielding percentage as a catcher. In his seventeen-year minor league career, he played in 1,267 games, accumulating 1,087 hits in 3,936 at bats for a .276 career batting average along with 128 home runs. After baseball retirement, Mancuso served for 30 consecutive years (1963-93) on the Houston City Council. During his political life, he gave of himself generously to the needs of the young people and to causes benefiting disadvantaged children. He also supported the creation of Lake Livingston and Lake Conroe reservoir to meet the city's long-term water needs, the construction of Houston Intercontinental Airport, and was chairmanship of a special committee that recommended the Houston Fire Department have its own ambulance service.  In the late 1990s, Harris County built the Frank Mancuso Sports Complex, a facility that reaches out to the needs of inner city kids, in his honor. His 2003 induction into the Texas Baseball Hall of Fame reunited him with his older brother, Gus Mancuso (1905-1984), as the second member of the family to be inducted. Mancuso died August 4, 2007 in Pasadena, Texas at the age of 89. Source

COORDINATES
29° 42.903
-095° 18.129

Section 55
Forest Park Lawndale Cemetery
Houston

September 1, 2015

Richard Bennett Hubbard (1832-1901)

Richard Hubbard, governor of Texas and diplomat, son of Richard Bennett and Serena (Carter) Hubbard, was born in Walton County, Georgia, on November 1, 1832. He spent his formative years in rural Jasper County, Georgia. He graduated from Mercer Institute (now Mercer University) in 1851 with an A.B. degree in literature and was elected National University Orator, a high honor at Mercer. He briefly attended lectures at the University of Virginia, then went to Harvard, where he was awarded the LL.B. in 1853. Later that year he and his parents moved to Smith County, Texas, where they settled in Tyler and then on a plantation near the site of Lindale. Hubbard first entered politics in 1855, when he opposed the American (Know-Nothing) party. In the 1856 presidential election he supported James Buchanan, who appointed him United States district attorney for the western district of Texas, a position he resigned in 1859 to run for the state legislature. He served in the Eighth Legislature, where he supported secession. After his failure to win election to the Confederate States Congress from the Fifth District, he recruited men for the Confederate forces. During the Civil War he commanded the Twenty-second Texas Infantry regiment and served in the Trans-Mississippi Department in Arkansas and Louisiana.

Hubbard's postwar law practice, supplemented by income from real estate and railroad promotion, enabled him to resume his political career by 1872, when he was chosen presidential elector on the Horace Greeley ticket. He was elected lieutenant governor in 1873 and 1876 and succeeded to the governorship on December 1, 1876, when Richard Coke resigned to become a United States senator. Hubbard's gubernatorial term was marked by post-Reconstruction financial difficulties, by general lawlessness, and by the fact that the legislature was never in session during his administration. Though political opponents prevented his nomination for a second term, he remained popular with the people of Texas. His accomplishments as governor include reducing the public debt, fighting land fraud, promoting educational reforms, and restoring public control of the state prison system.

When he left the governorship in 1879 he was the object of acrimonious political and personal attacks. In 1884 Hubbard served as temporary chairman of the Democratic national nominating convention. He campaigned vigorously for the party nominee, Grover Cleveland, who appointed him minister to Japan in 1885. His oratory gained him the cognomen "Demosthenes of Texas." His four years in Japan marked a delicate transitional period in Japanese-American relations. Under American and European influences, Japan was emerging from feudalism and dependency and had begun to insist on recognition as a diplomatic equal, a position Hubbard strongly supported. He concluded with Japan an extradition treaty, and his preliminary work on the general treaty revisions provided the basis for the revised treaties of 1894-99. When he returned to the United States in 1889, he wrote a book based upon his diplomatic experience, The United States in the Far East, which was published in 1899. Hubbard was a Freemason, a member of the Smith County Agricultural and Mechanical Society, and a member of the board of directors of Texas A&M. In 1876 he was chosen Centennial Orator of Texas to represent the state at the World's Exposition in Philadelphia. There he urged national unity and goodwill in an acclaimed oration. Hubbard was a Baptist. He was first married to Eliza B. Hudson, daughter of Dr. G. C. Hudson of Lafayette, Alabama, on November 30, 1858; one daughter of this marriage, Serena, survived. Hubbard's second marriage, on November 26, 1869, was to Janie Roberts, daughter of Willis Roberts of Tyler. Janie died during Hubbard's mission to Japan, leaving him a second daughter, Searcy. Hubbard lived his final years in Tyler, where he died on July 12, 1901. Hubbard in Hill County is named for him. Source

COORDINATES
32° 21.218
-095° 18.556


Oakwood Cemetery
Tyler

August 25, 2015

George Washington Teel (1784-1856)

George W. Teel (Teal), member of the Old Three Hundred, was born in Maryland on May 4, 1784, and was married in Missouri in 1823 to his second wife, Rebecca Johnson. He entered into Texas with the Stephen F. Austin colony in 1824, and on August 3, 1824, received title to a Spanish sitio of land in what is now Fort Bend County. After making some improvements to the land he transferred his title to Michael Turner. By December 22, 1824, Teel was in San Felipe, where he participated in the alcalde election, and by the fall of 1828 he was in the Ayish Bayou District, where he settled six miles west of what is now San Augustine. Sometime in the late 1820s he established a cotton gin in the vicinity of San Augustine. Teel fought in the battle of Nacogdoches, August 1-3, 1832, and was enrolled in Capt. William Kimbrough's company in the summer of 1836. Teel became a successful farmer and landowner. He took an active part in the early Methodist movement in the newly formed San Augustine Municipality. The noted Stevensons, preachers of the Louisiana circuit, held a meeting in Teel's home in 1835. He was selected as one of the fifteen trustees to form the board of the University of San Augustine. George Teel died on August 20, 1856, and his wife Rebecca died on August 10, 1866. They were buried in the family cemetery near their homesite. George Teel's will was probated in San Augustine County. In the early 1990s all that remained of the Teel family cemetery was parts of five broken monuments piled under a nearby tree. Source 

COORDINATES
31° 32.243
-094° 12.873


Teel Family Burying Ground
San Augustine

August 18, 2015

Charles Atherton Hartwell (1841-1876)

Charles Hartwell was born on May 6, 1841 in Natick, Massachusetts to Stedman and Rebecca Dana (Perry) Hartwell. He entered the Civil War as a private in the 7th New York State Militia, but shortly afterward received a commission as a 1st Lieutenant in the 11th U.S. Regular Infantry, where he served as an aide-de-camp to Major General Nathaniel P. Banks. When Congress authorized the enlistment of black soldiers, Hartwell was promoted to Colonel and became the commander of the 77th U.S. Colored Troops. During the War, he fought in several key battles, including Bristoe Station, Rappahannock Station, Yorktown, Hanover Courthouse, Mechanicsville, Gaines Mills, Savage Station and Port Hudson. On December 2, 1865, Hartwell was brevetted a brigadier general for excellence in service. He remained in the army after the war and died in Castroville while on active duty on October 3, 1876.


COORDINATES
29° 25.300
-098° 28.008

Section A
San Antonio National Cemetery
San Antonio

August 11, 2015

Robert Potter (1799-1842)

Robert Potter, legislator, cabinet member, and signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence, was born in June 1799 in Granville County, North Carolina. He joined the United States Navy as a midshipman in 1815 and resigned in 1821 to study law. By 1826 he had been admitted to the bar and had begun to practice law in Halifax, North Carolina. He soon transferred his law practice to Oxford, North Carolina, where in 1826 he was elected to the state House of Commons. In April 1828 he married Isabel A. Taylor, with whom he had two children. That same year he was elected as a Jacksonian Democrat to the United States House of Representatives, where he served two terms, from March 4, 1829, to November 1831. He resigned after an incident that occurred on August 28, 1831, in which Potter, in a jealous rage, maimed his wife's cousin and another man. For the attacks he was tried in a Granville County court in September 1831, found guilty, sentenced to six months in prison, and fined $2,000. His wife divorced him in 1834. After his release from prison Potter was again elected to the North Carolina House of Commons; he took his seat in 1834. In January 1835, however, he was expelled from the House for "cheating at cards," but the real motivation was probably the maiming. His domestic, legal, and political troubles in North Carolina caused Potter to decide upon Texas as a place for a new beginning.

He arrived in Nacogdoches on July 1, 1835, and almost immediately became embroiled in Texas political and military affairs. On October 9, 1835, he enrolled in Thomas J. Rusk's Nacogdoches Independent Volunteers to assist in equipping men for the siege of Bexar, but he decided to resign on November 21 to offer his services to the fledgling Texas Navy. Also in 1835 Potter was selected as a delegate to the Consultation, which met at San Felipe, but he did not attend. The next year he was elected as one of four delegates to represent Nacogdoches Municipality at the Convention of 1836. There he voted for independence from Mexico, signed the Texas Declaration of Independence, assisted president Richard Ellis when questions of parliamentary procedure were raised, and served on the committee appointed to draft the Constitution of the Republic of Texas. Before being appointed secretary of the Texas Navy and commander of the port of Galveston in 1836, Potter participated in the battle of San Jacinto, refused to sign the treaty afterwards negotiated with Antonio López de Santa Anna, and joined those advocating the execution of the Mexican president. In September 1836 he entered into a marriage of dubious legality with Harriet A. M. Ames. The couple had a daughter and a son. In 1837, after Sam Houston was elected to the Texas presidency, Potter retired first to a residence in Harrison County and then to a home built on his headright grant on Soda (now Caddo) Lake in what is now Marion County. Potter's new neighbors elected him their senator in the Congress of the Republic of Texas; he served from November 2, 1840, until his death. He became involved in the Regulator-Moderator War in Harrison County, where he quickly became a Moderator leader. A Regulator band surrounded his home and killed him on March 2, 1842, as he attempted to escape. He was initially buried at Potter's Point near his home, but on October 9, 1928, he was reinterred in the State Cemetery in Austin. Potter County in the Texas Panhandle, established on August 21, 1876, was named in his honor. Source

Note: Both the birth and death dates on his stone are incorrect.

COORDINATES
30° 15.930
-097° 43.648

Republic Hill
Texas State Cemetery
Austin