January 27, 2015

William Pryor

William Pryor, one of Stephen F. Austin's Old Three Hundred colonists, was born in either Virginia or Alabama. He received title to a labor of land now in Waller County on August 24, 1824. By January 1825 he was living on the Brazos River close to San Felipe. William B. Travis recorded in his diary that Pryor died at San Felipe on September 9, 1833. Travis attended his funeral on September 10. Pryor left his estate to his five daughters and disinherited his son.

Note
This is a cenotaph. During the Texas Revolution, the town of San Felipe was largely destroyed by Mexican troops chasing after the Texan army. Nothing was spared, not even the town graveyard. The majority of those buried here prior to 1836 are no longer marked, so although William Pryor is known to be buried here, the exact location has been lost.

GPS Coordinates
29° 47.894, -096° 06.043


San Felipe de Austin Cemetery
San Felipe

January 20, 2015

Hayden S. Arnold

Hayden S. Arnold, army officer in the Texas Revolution and legislator in the Republic of Texas, was born in Tennessee in 1805 and moved to Texas late in December 1835. At Nacogdoches on January 14, 1836, he took the oath of allegiance to the Mexican government and enrolled for six months' service in the Volunteer Auxiliary Corps. On March 6 he was elected captain of his company, which became the First Company of Col. Sidney Sherman's Second Regiment, Texas Volunteers. Arnold led the Nacogdoches troops at the battle of San Jacinto, where his new London Yager rifle was shot from his hands and broken through at the breech.

After the company disbanded on June 6, 1836, he was elected to represent Nacogdoches in the House of Representatives of the First Congress of the Republic of Texas. He served from October 3, 1836, to June 13, 1837. In 1836 Sam Houston appointed him to serve as secretary of a commission to treat with the Indians. He later served as district clerk pro tem of the Nacogdoches District, until at least December 20, 1838. Arnold died on July 3, 1839, at his home in Nacogdoches and was buried in Oak Grove Cemetery there. His widow, Selina, was appointed administrator of his estate. In 1936 the state of Texas erected a monument over his grave. On November 17, 1851, Adolphus Sterne introduced a bill for the relief of Arnold's heirs before the Senate of the State of Texas.

GPS Coordinates
31° 36.179, -094° 38.972


Oak Grove Cemetery
Nacogdoches

January 13, 2015

William Pettus Hobby

William Pettus Hobby, editor, publisher, and governor of Texas, was born in Moscow, Texas, on March 26, 1878, the son of Eudora Adeline (Pettus) and Edwin E. Hobby. One of six children, Hobby moved in 1893 with his family from Livingston to Houston, where he entered Houston High School. In 1895 he began working for the Houston Post as a circulation clerk. Hobby became a business writer for the Post in August 1901. He began to take an active interest in politics, was a founder of the Young Men's Democratic Club of Houston and in 1904 was secretary of the party's state executive committee. He became city editor, then managing editor of the Post, and participated in the covering of some of the most spectacular stories of the time.

In 1907 he left the Post to become manager and part owner of the Beaumont Enterprise, which he soon acquired. Hobby was elected lieutenant governor in 1914 and was reelected in 1916. He was married in 1915 to Willie Cooper, daughter of former United States Representative Samuel Bronson Cooper. She died in 1929. When Governor James Edward Ferguson was removed from office in 1917, Hobby became the twenty-sixth governor of Texas and the youngest man, at thirty-nine, to hold the office. Hobby served during an eventful period. During World War I he set up an effective military draft system for Texas, a state in which half of the country's military camps and most of its airfields were located. In 1918 Hobby defeated Ferguson by the largest majority ever received in a Democratic primary. Hobby's administration saw the passage of measures for drought relief, runoff requirements in party primaries, and state aid for schools and highways. He appointed the first Highway Commission in 1917. Laws included measures for oil conservation, the establishment of the oil and gas division of the Railroad Commission and of the Board of Control, and provision for free school textbooks.

After completing his term, he returned to the Beaumont Enterprise and purchased the Beaumont Journal. He retained control of both papers for more than a decade. In 1924 he became president of the Houston Post-Dispatch. When J.E. Josey acquired the newspaper in 1931 from Ross S. Sterling, Hobby continued in the presidency and maintained executive control. In 1939 he acquired the paper, again called the Post. In February 1931 Hobby married Oveta Culp of Killeen and Houston, a former parliamentarian of the Texas House, who became a Post staff member, served in World War II as commander of the Women's Army Corps, and served in the Dwight David Eisenhower administration as the first secretary of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. The Hobbys had a son and a daughter. Under Hobby, the Post grew in circulation and prestige. The Houston Post Company also included the radio station, KPRC, and the television station, KPRC-TV. In August 1955 Hobby became chairman of the board of the company, with Mrs. Hobby as president and editor. Hobby died in Houston on June 7, 1964. A state historical marker at his birthplace was dedicated at Moscow in 1964. Hobby Field and Hobby Elementary School in Houston were named for him.

GPS Coordinates
29° 45.854, -095° 23.166

Section H3
Glenwood Cemetery
Houston

January 6, 2015

Gene Tierney

Gene Tierney, movie star, was born in Brooklyn, New York, on November 20, 1920, the daughter of Howard S. and Belle Taylor Tierney. Her father, a successful insurance broker, and her mother were wealthy socialites, and as a child Tierney enjoyed a privileged life that included private schools in Connecticut and finishing school in Switzerland. After completing her schooling, where she had exhibited some interest in acting, Tierney earned a supporting part in the Broadway comedy Ring Two in 1939. In the early 1940s she went to Hollywood and established herself as a star for 20th Century Fox, usually playing elegant social characters. Her early films included The Return of Frank James (1940), Belle Star (1941), and Heaven Can Wait (1943). It was, however, her 1944 portrayal of the title character in the murder mystery Laura that established Tierney as a major screen star. In this movie she played a high-society woman who is an apparent murder victim and with whom a police detective, played by Dana Andrews, falls in love through her pictures. Two years after this movie, Tierney was nominated for an Academy Award for her melodramatic role as a self-centered woman who commits suicide in Leave Her to Heaven (1945).

Tierney exuded a patrician air and was strikingly attractive, causing some critics to suggest that her acting did not live up to her presence. But others found her a refreshingly direct actor, and she enjoyed continued success throughout the 1940s and 1950s in such movies as The Razor's Edge (1946); The Ghost and Mrs. Muir (1947), in which she costarred with Rex Harrison; and The Left Hand of God (1955). While Tierney enjoyed professional success during her years as a screen star, tragedy struck in her personal life. In 1943, while married to designer Oleg Cassini, she gave birth to a severely brain-damaged daughter. She and Cassini had another daughter in 1948, but the couple divorced four years later.

In 1955 Tierney left Hollywood, suffering from stress and depression, and became a patient at the Menninger Clinic in Topeka, Kansas. She was determined to regain a happy life, and in 1960 she married W. Howard Lee, a Houston oil executive and the former husband of Hedy Lamarr. She joined Lee in Texas, where she lived for the next thirty-one years. After her marriage she made a few more movies, including Advise and Consent in 1962 and The Pleasure Seekers in 1965, but subsequently, with more than thirty movie credits to her name, she retired permanently from films. Tierney later made a few television appearances but spent most of her time traveling with her husband and participating in civic and charitable causes in Houston, a life she said was preferable to her years of Hollywood stardom. In 1979 her autobiography, Self-Portrait, was published by Wyden Books. Gene Tierney died of emphysema in Houston on November 6, 1991. She was preceded in death by her husband and was survived by her two daughters, four grandchildren, and one sister.

GPS Coordinates
29° 45.899, -095° 23.142

Section E-1
Glenwood Cemetery
Houston