John Henry Brown.

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power. He attended the Brockport Academy dur-
ing the school year ; always spending his summer
vacations in the country, on one of his father's
farms, where the free, open air and exercise would
remove any tendency of the physical system to
an unhealthy development, and where his mental
faculties could recover their normal vigor after a
year of hard study. The Brockport! Academy, in
1867, was converted into a State Normal School,
and young Silliman was a member of its second
graduating class, delivering the first graduating
oration in July, 1869, his subject being: "Men
the World Demands." He then went to Albion,
Mich., where his parents had removed, and there
engaged in teaching in the intermediate department
of the public schools. In 1871 he went to New
Orleans, where he was appointed first assistant in
the Fisk Grammar School, and afterward, in a
competitive examination, was awarded the pro-
fessorship of natural sciences in the Boys' High
School of that city. After filling the duties of that
position successfully until 1874, he resigned and

went to Santa Barbara, Cal., a desire to see the
Pacific Coast country prompting the change. Here
he was for a year engaged as professor of mathemat-
ics in Santa Barbara College. The following year
he went to Oakland to fill a chair in the CaUfornia
Military Academy, then under the direction of the
Reverend David McClure, the founder and proprie-
tor. In 1877 he was elected assistant in the Boys'
High School of San Francisco, a position he held
for four years, During this time Mr. Silliman took
a complete course in Hastings College of the law,
and in 1881 was graduated from that department of
the University of California with the degree of
LL.B., being a member of the first graduating law
class of that institution of learning.

Resigning Ms position in the high school, he im-
mediately entered a wider field of usefulness at San
Diego, Cal. , by engaging in the practice of the law,
but finding that merchandising in that part of the State
would afford greater opportunities for acquiring a
competency, he temporarily abandoned the law and
became managing partner of the firm of Francisco,
Silliman & Company, which was succeeded later by
that of Gruendike & Company. Mr. Silliman
remained in business at San Diego until 1884, and
then came to Texas to look after several tracts of
land he had previously acquired in his trading enter-
prises. While investigating the inexhaustible re-
sources of this State, he concluded that it would
be a good field for a land business, and he accord-
ingly opened an office in the Masonic Temple in
Austin, Texas, being associated with John Mc-
Dougall, an old Louisiana friend, who had a branch
oflBce at New Orleans. In 1885, Mr. Silliman went
to England and succeeded in organizing the com-
pany of which he is now the manager. Through his
exertions, aided by his wife's relatives, sufficient
capital was raised and the company was organized
with Mr. Alderman, Benjamin S. Brigg, J. P., of
Keighley, England, as chairman. The other direct-
ors were the Hon. Harold Finch-Hatton, David
MacPherson, Esq., Swire Smith, J. P., Joseph C.
Wakefield, Esq., and William Woodail, M. P.
Messrs. Smith, Payne & Smiths are the London
bankers, and Alfred T. Jay is the London manager.
The company organized with a capital of £500,000
of which only £11,000 was paid up when they
began operations. The development of the busi-
ness was rapid. Ample funds were offered as fast



as they could be profitably employed, and in four
years' time the nominal capital was doubled. The
company has confined itself exclusively to advance-
ments on first mortgages of freehold real estates,
not exceeding fifty per cent of their market value,
and has been eminently and uniformly successful,
paying satisfactory dividends to its stockholders,
besides accumulating a reserve fund of £60,000.

From the inception of the company until the
present time Mr. Silliman has had the management
of its affairs in Texas, and its uniform success, and
the fact that it went through the panic of 1893
without the slightest inconvenience, reflects great
credit upon his executive ability as a financier. In
1889 Mr. Silliman removed his offices from Austin to
Fort Worth, and since his residence there has been
closely identified with the advancement of the
" Queen City," and to his public spirit and liberal-
ity is due to a great extent the reputation Fort
Worth enjoys as a commercial and financial center.

In his capacity as president of the Chamber of
Commerce he has labored heroically and unceas-
ingly to secure for the city factories, railroads and
other industrial enterprises to employ labor, and
has proven himself a tower of strength in encourag-
ing and aiding in the development of the city, her
industries and institutions.

His interests are many, and he is an extremely
busy man. Three times he has visited Europe on
business in connection with his company. He is a
shareholder in several of the national banks, of the
Fort Worth Stock Yards Company, and is largely
interested in Texas real estate. His worth as a
progressive and enterprising citizen is fully ap-
preciated by his fellow-citizens, and few stand

higher than he in the esteem and admiration of all.
He is a member of the various orders of Free
Masonry, being a Past Master of Austin Lodge No.
.12, and a past officer in the commandery, and the
Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, having re-
ceived the thirty-second degree. He takes great
interest in church work, being a deacon of the First
Baptist Church.

Mr. Silliman was married on the 15th day of July,
1876, in the Church of the Annunciation at New
Orleans, La., to the daughter of Benjamin Jack-
son, of Louisville, Ky. Mrs. Silliman's mother's
maiden name was Swire, her people coming from
Keighley, Yorkshire, England.

Mrs. Silliman's home is known as the Somerville
Place. It is situated on the bluff overlooking the
Trinity river in the western part of Fort Worth,
where he has recently erected one of the handsom-
est residences in the city. The residence is modeled
after the colonial style of architecture, and is built
of granitic pressed-brick, with stone trimmings, and
is three stories in height. On the first floor are
the parlors, library and dining-room ; on the second
the sleeping apartments and billiard room ; while the
third floor is almost entirely taken up by the art
studio of Mrs. Silliman, who enjoys quite a local
reputation as an amateur artist. The entire house
is lighted by electricity and is heated by the most
approved appliances. Artesian water is supplied
by a deep well located on the premises. The house
is furnished in exquisite taste, and all in all is one
of the most elegant and hospitable homes in Fort
Worth, as will be attested by many at home
and abroad who have been entertained within its



Came to Texas in 1836, and crossed the Brazos
river into the town of Old Washington, in Wash-
ington County, December 25, of that year. He
came hither from Mississippi but was a native of
Florida, where he was born near the city of Talla-
hasse, October 10, 1797. Two brothers, John and
Jesse Lott, preceded him to Texas. John lost his
life (killed by Indians) near Killum Springs, in
Grimes County, about the year 1838. Jesse located
at San Antonio, where he died late in the 60' s.

Eobert A. Lott located in Washington County,
about four miles southwest of Washington, and in
1854 returned to the old town of Washington, where
he kept a hotel and did a general merchandising
business until the breaking out of the late Civil War,
when he closed out his business. He took part in
the Somervell expedition and was one of the Tex-
ains captured at Mier. He drew a white bean at
the hacienda of Salado and thereby escaped death
at that place. Those who drew black beans were



■shot, pursuant to orders received from Santa Anna.
He died January 3, 1861, at sixty-three years of
■age. He doubtless grew up in Florida in the stock-
raising business, as he brought a band of fine horses
with him to Texas. He married Susan C. Behn,
January 17, 1828, who survived until February 28,
1895. She was eighty -four years of age at the time
of her death. She was born May 29, 1812, and was
the mother of eleven children, five of whom, at this
writing (1895), are living, viz. : William R., Jesse
JJ., James F., Laura L. (who is now Mrs. John C.
JMcKinney), and Phrandius K.

Jesse B. Lott, son of Robert A. Lott, is a well-

known merchant of Navasota. He was born in
Washington County, near the old town of Washing-
ton, on his father's farm, April 1, 1842, and there
grew to manhood. He learned merchandising in
his father's store at Old Washington and there fol-
lowed same until 1889, when he engaged in busi-
ness for himself in Navasota, where he now resides
and owns a large mercantile establishment. He
married in Washington County, Miss Augusta L.,
daughter of Col. Henry A. Lockett, a Texas
pioneer of 1856.

Mr. and Mrs. Lott have three children : Jessie,
Alice and Edward T.



The subject of this sketch is one of Navasota's
tmost enterprising citizens. He is a native of
Alabama, born January 5th, 1849, in the city of
Mobile, in that State. His father was of English
and his mother of German birth. His father, John
Horlock, was a ship-chandler by occupation ; estab-
lished himself in Mobile in 1840 and came from
.that city to Texas in 1860 and located at Galveston,
where he engaged in ship-chandelery at the corner
of Twentieth and Market streets. His store was
■one of the very few that kept open for business
during the prolonged period covered by the war
between the States, sustaining serious losses. He,
in 1865, returned to England and opened a store in
the city of Liverpool, taking his family with him.
He, however, came again to Galveston and soon
after his return there died in 1868. His wife sur-
^vived him until 1892. She died in Navasota. She
reared seven children, three of whom are now
living, viz.: Robert A., Mrs. T. C. Ogilvy and
William, all of whom are living at Navasota. Mr.
Robert A. Horlock was about twelve years of age
■when his parents moved from Mobile to Galveston
The war broke out about this time, schools were
closed and business disorganized. Young Hor-
lock, although a mere lad, absorbed the spirit of
:the times, boarded a blockade runner in Galveston
harbor, presented himself to the commander for
duty and was enlisted as Captain's boy. He re-
mained in service in this capacity until the fall of

Richmond and Lee's surrender and experienced all
the excitements and adventure incident to this most
hazardous feature of warfare.

The old blockade runner, the steamer Denbiegli,
happened to be lying in Galveston harbor when the
closing event of the war took place. News of Lee's
surrender reached Galveston several days before the
arrival of Federal authorities at that port, but was
immediately abandoned and her hull and boilers
have since lain off Bolliver point, a land-mark often
visited by local fishermen, who make large catches
from its ruins.

Mr. Horlock went to England with his parents
and returned to Galveston with them, where he was
employed as buyer for a firm of hide and wool, deal-
ers until 1870. He then spent one year in the hard-
ware business on the Strand, and late in 1871,
moved to Navasota, in Grimes County, Jsince which
time he has been a conspicuous figure in the busi-
ness development of that place. He is at the head
of the firm of Horlock & Hawley (cotton ginners
and manufacturers of ice), and is, also, senior
member of the firm of Horlock & Schumacher,
jewelers. *

He is manager of the Schmacher Oil Company
and has extensive landed interests in the Brazos
Valley in Grimes County.

Mr. Horlock has been twice married, in 1872 to
Miss Ella Lyon, of Evansville, Ind., who died in
1876, leaving one son, Robert, and a daughter.



Emma, and in 1877 to Miss Agnes White, of New
Orleans, who has born him seven children, viz. :
Agnes, Effle, Ida, Arthur, Gladys, Naniscah and

Mr. Horlock is a member of the K. of P. Uni-
formed Knights and Knights of Honor fraternities
and is an officer with the rank of Colonel on the
staff of Gen. Hopkins, in the U. E. K. of P.



His father, Capt. James Dunn, and mother,
whose maiden name was Miss Isabella Caufleld
(natives of Ireland), sailed from Belfast to America
early in the present century ; after a brief residence
in South Carolina, settled in 1815 in Alabama,
where they lived until 1832, when they started for
Texas, reaching the Irish settlement in Robertson's
Colony known as "Stagger Point" in January,
1833, and shortly afterwards moved to Wheelock's
prairie, where the following year Capt. Dunn loca-
ted a headright, the first of the kind made in
that section. Here he built a log-house which
became the nucleus of a frontier settlement. In
1837 his house was fortified and armed, and be-
came a place of considerable importance, the land-
offlce,Courtof the Alcalde, etc., being located there.
During his twenty years residence in Texas, he was
engaged mainly in locating lands and became the
owner of large bodies of " wild land" and great
numbers of cattle. He died in August, 1852.
His wife survived him eleven years, dying in
August, 1863. They had four children who
reached maturity. Mary (twice married, first to
Felix Robertson, and after his death, to David
Love), James (who served in early days against
the Indians and died in Navarro County, in 1865),
George H. (subject of this sketch), and Catherine
A. (who married Joseph Cavitt and is now
deceased). George H. Dunn was born in Green
County, Ala., September SO, 1824; and was
mainly reared in Robertson County, Texas ; was
brought up in the saddle and at an early date was
one of the best known stock-raisers in Eastern or
Central Texas ; inherited large landed and cattle
interests from his parents and through his untiring
energy and thorough knowledge of the business soon
forged to the front as the leading cattleman in his

section ; was commissioned by the Confederate
Government, with the rank of Captain, to purchase
cattle and forward them to the soldiers at the front,
and during the war between the States disbursed
thousands and thousands of dollars in this service ;
during his active business career, which continued
until a number of years ago, when he sold his cattle
and invested all of his means in land and good
securities, his cattle roamed over a dozen counties
and he effected many large sales, ranging from
$20,000.00 in one instance to $90,000 in another.
It would have been impossible for him to have
handled this volume of business alone, as he had
no educational advantages. He found a valuable
assistant in his wife, Mrs. Nancy J. Dunn, who took
charge of the clerical end of his business affairs.
She was a daughter of Judge Samuel B. Killough
(mention of whom will be found elsewhere in this
volume) and was born in Robertson County, Texas.
She was united in marriage to C?ipt. George H.
Dunn, February 24th, 1861. Thirteen children
were born of this union: Mary Ann, James Black-
burn, Isabella (who married M. C. Armstrong and
died December 9th, 1892) ; Josephine (wife of T.
A. Sims of Robertson County) ; Willie, wife of Rev.
John H. Jackson) ; Sallie E. (wife of Marsh
Mitchell of Wheelock) ; George R., John C, Annette
Woodward (wife of Wm. G. Curry of Wheelock) ;
Samuel R. Nancy J., and twins Ida and Ada.
Mr, and Mrs. Dunn have twenty grandchildren

Both Capt. and Mrs. Dunn are members of the
Methodist Church.

Capt. Dunn was a member of the Masonic fra-
ternity for many years, joining the order in Wheel-
ock, where he held a membership as long as the
local lodge remained in existence.

i i
i i






Mr. Ahrenbeck was born and reared in Hanover,
Germany, whence he emigrated to America in 1855,
landing at Galveston in November of that year.
He settled on Spring Branch in Harris County,
where he resided two years, and then moved to
Hempstead. In 1867 he moved from Hempstead
to Navasota, his present place of residence. Mr.
Ahrenbeck learned the milling business in Ger-
many ; but, on coming to this country, for lack of
«mployment at his trade, worked as a wagon-
maker. He built a flour-mill at Navasota in 1877 ;
but, after a short and unprofitable run, shut it
•down, and resumed work as a wagon-maker. In
1891 he again went into the milling business, which

he has since followed. Mr. Ahrenbeck was accom-
panied to this country by his brother Charles, and
they were always associated together in business
until the latter's death September 23, 1885. Both
were competent mechanics, and struggled hard
during their early years in Texas to secure a foot-
hold. Their efforts were finally rewarded with
success. They built up a good trade and secured
a first-class standing in the community where they
lived. Mr. Ahrenbeck is one of the leading citi-
zens of Navasota, a man of means and is highly

He married Mrs. Weston, of Grimes County, in
1869, but has no children.



Col. James Quincy Yarborough, son of Alfred
und Mary Yarborough, was born in Coosa County,
Ala., September 8, 1827, and was reared in Marengo
and Sumter counties in that State, growing up on
liis father's farm, where his boyhood and youth were
divided between the duties and sports of the farm
and his attendance at the local schools. His op-
portunities for obtaining an education were good
and he availed himself of them. At about the age
of twenty-one he married and began life as a
planter upon his own account. He engaged in
planting in his native State until the death of his
wife in 1852, when, unsettled by that event and
filled with a desire to try his fortunes in the new
West, he went to California in 1849 where, however,
he remained only a short time, returning thence to
Alabama. In 1859 he came to Texas, settling at
Apolonia, in Grimes County, where he was residing
at the opening of the late war. He entered the
•Confederate army as a member of Company H.,
Carter's Regiment, with which he served in Texas,
Arkansas and Louisiana until the close of the strug-
gle. His services were rendered in the capacity of
a private, but the title of "Colonel," which he
subsequently bore, was not a purely honorary dis-

tinction, as he was Colonel of the State Militia in
Alabama previous to his removal to Texas, and took
an active part in military matters in that State.

After the war, in 1869, Col. Yarborough became
associated with Lewis J. Wilson and W. E. Howell,
under the firm name of Wilson, Yarborough & Co.,
and embarked in the mercantile business at Ander-
son, Apolonia, and Navasota, in Grimes County,
and at Madisonville, in Madison County. This
partnership lasted until 1875, when Col. Yarborough
disposed of his interest, and subsequently engaged
in business on his own account in Navasota. Later
he moved his business to the present station of
Yarborough, on the Gulf, Colorado & Santa Fe
Railway, ten miles from Navasota, and there
followed merchandising and farming until his
death. He met with more than ordinary suc-
cess both as a merchant and planter and left a
handsome estate. He was entirely devoted to
business, never holding any public positions and
taking only such interest in politics as good citizen-
ship required. When occasion demanded, how-
ever, he never hesitated to go to the front in every
movement and he always displayed in public mat-
ters much of the same spirit, energy, and enterprise



which brought such pronounced success in his own
undertakings. He was especially active in securing
the extension of the Gulf, Colorado & Santa Fe
Railway through Grimes County and gave to the
company the grounds on which the station of Yar-
borough is situated to which he added a bonus of
$2,000 in cash to aid in the construction of the
road. Jij Whatever tended in any way to stimulate
industry, to increase the value of property or build
up the community, found in him an intelligent and
cordial supporter. In politics he was a staunch
Democrat, adhering strictly to the principles and
traditions of the party. He never asked office for
himself but always stood ready to assist with his
means and personal efforts those who were honored
as standard bearers of the party, and in his quiet
but vigorous way did good service for the men
and measures of his choice. Col. Yarborough
was a man of strong likes and dislikes. There was
not the slightest trace of the compromise element
in his nature. He always took sides and sought in
every 'legitimate way to carry his point. If he pro-
fessed friendship for one he was ready to testify to
that friendship in a substantial way, and if any one
incurred his displeasure he did not hesitate to let
the fact be known. He was of a retiring disposi-
tion but did his own thinking, acting vigorously and
promptly as occasion demanded. He was of genial
nature, affable to his friends and easily approached

by strangers. Persistent in what he believed to be
right or expedient, he never abandoned his matured
opinions at the suggestion, or as the result of the
opposition of any one. He joined the Masons in
Alabama previous to his removal to Texas, and was
a liberal contributor to every worthy purpose.

Col. Yarborough was three times married and left
surviving him ten children. His first marriage
occurred in Alabama and was to Miss Mary A.
Parham. a native of that State and a daughter of
Mathew Parham, a respectable and well-to-do-
planter. The issue of this union was one son, the
present Mathew Parham Yarborough, of Navasota.
His second marriage occurred in Texas and was to-
Miss Alice Scott, a daughter of Judge James Scott,
of Grimes County. Three children were born of
this union, viz., Mant, now Mrs. Tom Owen, Alfred,
and Jas. L. Yarborough. His last marriage took
place in Florida and was to Miss Fannie A. Milton,
a native of Marianna, that State, and a daughter
of Governor John A. Milton, who served in the
Florida Indian wars and was Governor of the State
during the war between the States. The six chil-
dren of this union are : Earle H. , J. Milton, Martha
E., Virgil H., Guy and Hunter.

Col. Yarborough's death occurred December 23,.
1890, and called forth many expressions of sorrow
from the people of Grimes County, to whom he was-
well known and by whom he was greatly respected-



Was born in Harwinton, Litchfield County,
Conn., December 12th, 1832. While an infant his
parents moved to Marion, Ala., where they resided
until he was fourteen years old, when he was sent
North to complete his education, where he remained
until he was nineteen years of age.

Mr. Wilson came of an old Connecticut family,
one that has long been prominent in the history of
that State. His father, Samuel Wilson, a merchant
of large means, moved from Connecticut to
Marion, Ala., in the early 30' s and there engaged
in the mercantile business until 1851, when he
came to Texas and established a business at Ander-
son, in Grimes County, in copartnership with
Chester M. Case, under the firm name of Case &
Wilson. The son, Lewis J., came out to Texas in

1852, took 'the position of bookkeeper and generar
manager for the firm and, later, acquired a pro-
prietary interest in the business. Mr. Lewis J.
Wilson served as a member of Capt. J. R. Alston'^
Company, Twenty-first (Carter's) Regiment of
Texas Cavalry for two years during the war between
the States, and was then honorably discharged from
active service in the field on account of physicai
disabilities. Returning to Anderson, he was soo»
after made chief clerk in the ordnance department
at that place, remaining until the war was over.
Immediately after the war he began merchandising
in his own name. In 1866 he associated himself
with Col. J. Q. Yarborough and, in 1869, Mr. W.
R. Howell was admitted to a partnership in the firm.
Mr. Wilson and his partner,. Mr. Yarborough, sooi>



after moved to Navasota and opened up a general

Online LibraryJohn Henry BrownIndian wars and pioneers of Texas → online text (page 79 of 135)