John Henry Brown.

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coming to Texas he married Miss MaTy B. Hunt,
adopted daughter of Capt. William G. Hunt. This
union has been blessed with six children : William
Hunt, Howard C, Mabel, Mary E., Thomas J.,
and Francis Wilmans Morris.

Rev. Mr. Morris is one of the most progressive
and truly representative men of his county, and
deservedly ranks high as a citizen and Christian



Was born February 12, 1846, in Saxe-Gotha, Ger-
many. His father, Ernest Kott, one of the early
German settlers of Texas, came to America in
1854, landing at Galveston inthatyear, from which
place he proceeded almost immediately to Freder-
icksburg, via Indianola, New Braunfels and San
Antonio. He was a bookbinder by trade and,
although the active years of his life were spent in
farming, did during the last ten years of his life
more or less work at his trade on his farm in
Gillespie County. He was born in Saxe-Gotha,
Germany, in 1816 ; followed his trade there, and
there married Miss Louise Deetzel. They brought
four children with them to this country, viz. : Her-
mann, who was a soldier in the Confederate army
and lost his life at the battle of Mansfield, Louisi-
ana, in 1863 ; Lena, Richard, and Julius. Erna,
Edward and Clara (the latter now deceased) were
born to them in this country.

Richard, the subject of this notice, was but
eight years of age when his parents reached Texas,

and had but meager schooling, and with bis father
waged the battle for bread on the family farm in
what was then a frontier country, and on the open
cattle range. He soon acquired a taste for and a
broad experience in the saddle, and recalls many
interesting experiences on the range and in pursuit
of Indians.

Mr. Kott has been an active and successful busi-
ness man, turning his attention, at various
times, to freighting, merchandising, speculat-
ing, etc. Some time since he built, and is
now running, the Kott Hotel, at Comfort. He
married, in 1869, Mrs. Johanna Heim, widow of
Antone Heim. Her maiden name was Miss Allar-
kamp. She had two daughters, Matilda and
Antone Heim, by her first marriage. She has
borne Mr. Kott three sons: Hermann, Ernest, and
Hugo. Mr. Kott is an enterprising, progressive
and intelligent citizen. He has given his children
excellent schooling privileges, and they are all well
settled in life.





William Elliott, a pioneer of Texas in 1839, and
well known in his day as aa energetic and success-
ful business man of San Antonio, was a native of
Ireland, born in the year 1799. His father was a
merchant in a small town and apprenticed him to a
seven 3'ears' service with a mercantile house in Dub-
lin. Here he received thorough disciplining in
and a thorough knowledge of business methods.
At twenty-one years of age (in 1820) he came to
America and engaged in merchandising and mining
in Mexico. It Is known that he was embarked in
business at Matamoros, Mexico, in 1836, and in
1839 came to Texas and located at San Antonio,
where he formed a copartnership with Edward
Dwyer and opened a mercantile establishment in a
storehouse situated on the site of the present How-
ard Block on Soledad street. This connection con-
tinued but a short time. Mr. Elliott remained suc-
cessfully engaged in trade until the time of his

death, which occurred in New Orleans while on a
trip, May 12th, 1847. He was a thrifty merchant,
and had business relations with both the Castro
and New Braunfels colonies.

He married Miss Eleanor Cornolly in New Or-
leans in 1835. She also was of Irish birth, and
at two years of age came to this country with her
parents. Her father was a well-known wholesale
merchant at New Orleans.

Mr. and Mrs. Elliott had three children : Will-
iam H. Elliott (deceased in 1889), who served as a
Captain in the Confederate army, and left a widow
and three children surviving him ; John B., also a
soldier in the Confederate army, who died at
Brownsville, Texas, in 1864 ; and Mrs. Mary Ell-
iott Howard, a most refined and cultured lady, who
resides at San Antonio.

Mrs. Elliott died at San Antonio, August 27th,



James Cole, of Burnet, was born in Maury
County, Tenn., in 1828, and accompanied his
parents to Texas in 1845. His father was William
Cole, and his mother before marriage was a Miss
Joplin, the father being a native of Virginia and the
mother a native of Tennessee. William Cole was
in the War of 1812 ; settled in Tennessee in 1818 ;
moved thence to Mississippi and thence to Texas,
settling in Fayette County, where he died in 1860,
at the age of 65 years. His wife, mother of the
subject of this notice, had previously died in Mis-
sissippi. The father was accompanied to Texas by
his two sons, William and James, the former re-
turning to Mississippi soon after coming to this
State, and dying there.

James Cole was in his seventeenth year when he
came to Texas. His youth was spent in Fayette
County. In 1861 he enlisted in the Confederate
army as a soldier in the Sixteenth Texas Infantry
(Flornoy's Eegiment), McCulIoch's Brigade, and

served during the war in Arkansas and Louisiana,
taking part in most of the military operations in
that section, notably those incident to Banks' Eed
river campaign. His regiment was a part of
Walker's Division, which did such gallant service
at Mansfield, Pleasant Hill, Yellow Bayou and other
engagements. From 1865 to 1883 Mr. Cole farmed
in Fayette County. Then, on the recommendation
of his physician, he moved to Bryan County for his
health, making his home at the town of Burnet,
where he has since resided.

He married Miss Mariame, a daughter of David
Shelby, who came to Texas as one of Stephen F.
Austin's first three hundred colonists, and settled
at Richmond, in Fort Bend County. He was in the
frontier service for many years — in the army during
the early days of the revolution (1835-6), and was,
as long as he lived, a respected citizen of the
county, dying in Austin County in 1872, after
having passed the three-score years and ten allotted




to man. Mrs. Cole was born in Austin County.
Her brother, James Shelby, was in the frontier ser-
vice of Texas and was murdered by Indians while
on the frontier some time during the " forties."
Mr. and Mrs. Cole have three daughters: Mrs.

Cora Hamill, Mrs. Lela Hill, and Thula, un-

By industry and good management Mr. Cole has
accumulated a competency and is spending his
declining years in ease.



The subject of this memoir was born in Frank-
lin County, Tenn., July 10, 1813. His parents
were Jacob and Mary Van Zandt. His father was
a native of North Carolina, the youngest son of
Jacob Van Zandt, who, about the beginning of this
century, moved out of the Moravian settlement in
that State, and established himself as an agricul-
turist in Franklin County, Tenn. His mother's
father, Samuel Isaacs, about the same time
migrated from South Carolina, and settled in Lin-
coln County, Tenn., an adjoining county to that
of Franklin. On both sides he came of revolution-
ary patriot ancestry. His grandfather Van Zandt
participated in several of the batles that won our
independence of the British Crown, and his grand-
father Isaacs, all through the war, was a zealous
and active follower of the fortunes of Marion in all
of his dashing and hazardous raids against the
English foemen, and their home allies, the traitor-
ous tories.

All through his boyhood and youth Isaac Van
Zandt was a victim of ill-health, and for this rea-
son his attendance at school was desultory, and not
as fruitful of educational benefit to him as it would
otherwise have been. But his enforced absence
from the school room gave him an opportunity to
indulge at his home his relish of good books. He
read with an ardent yearning to acquire a knowl-
edge of the subjects treated of in the volumes he
perused, and thus, perhaps, he fully compensated
himself for all the loss he sustained by being com-
pelled to forego scholastic instruction. With Eng-
lish literature and general history he became quite

At the age of twenty he married Miss Fannie
Lipscomb, a relative of the late Chief Justice
Lipscomb, of Texas, and commenced merchandising
at Salem, in his native county, having his father
for a partner. This business, however, continued
only for a few months ; for, his father dying in

1834, the concern had to be wound up so as to
facilitate a speedy distribution of the paternal
estate among the heirs. As soon as this had been
effected, Isaac Van Zandt promptly sold for cash
his portion of the estate, consisting mainly of
land and negroes, and in 1835 went North and
invested the proceeds of his patrimony in a stock
of goods. This stock he shipped to Coffeeville,
Miss., and there resumed the mercantile bus-
iness, expecting to be a life-long merchant and
nothing else. This was the flush time in Missis-
sippi. Bank paper was abundant ; everything
vendible was bought and sold at high valuations ;
the credit system was in vogue and everybody went
deeply into debt. At length the bubble burst and
the culmination came in the shape of broken banks,
bankrupt tradesmen and a financially ruined people.
Having invested all he was worth in the Missis-
sippi mercantile adventure, when the crash came,
in 1837, Van Zandt found himself well-nigh penni-
less. He struggled for a time against the tide of
ill fortune, made every possible effort to collect the
debts due him, and pay off those he owed, but his
debtors, in most cases, neither by persuasion nor
court process could be induced to meet his de-
mands against them, and this failure to meet their
obligations to him made him impotent to meet his
creditors. Even bedding woven by the wife was
sold to meet the debts of the husband. As long as
he had anything that could be turned to the credit
side of his indebtedness, it took that direction and
he had the proud consciousness of knowing that he
had held back nothing to which, either by the law
of the land or that of moral obligation, his cred-
itors had a rightful claim. While residing at
Coffeeville, his talent for public speaking was first
developed. He became a member of a debating
club, consisting of the young lawyers and others of
the little town, and to his own surprise, as well as
that of others, he soon displayed a rare readiness



of speech and unusual aeuteness of argument in the
discussions that occurred. This almost purely
accidental discovery of a latent, and hitherto
unused talent, determined his future career in life,
for, shorn of all his property, he had no resource
but his native gift of intellect. He determined to
turn his attention to legal studies, took up the ele-
mentary books on English law, and by assiduous ap-
plication to a perusal of them, in somewhat less than
a year, so far mastered their contents as to obtain,
on due examination, admission to the bar. In this
manner his reverse of fortune proved to have been
a blessing in disguise, his commercial disaster
leading him to a pursuit for which his natural
abilities eminently fitted him. By this change of
vocation he speedily won back more than he had
lost pecuniarily as a merchant, and at the same
time achieved an honorable distinction among bis
fellow-men, far surpassing that which ordinarily
comes to the most successful follower of mere
trade. This success came to him in Texas, whither
he migrated, carrying with him his family, in 1838.
His first home in the young Eepublic was in Panola
County, at that time but lately organized and very
sparsely settled. An humble, lonely log cabin
there sheltered him and his loved ones for some
months. He did not locate himself in that county
with the intention of abiding there permanently,
but for economic reasons, and that, before offering
himself as a general practitioner of the law, he
might have a quiet retreat, where he might, by
private study, make himself familiar with the stat-
utes of the Republic, and the modes of procedure
in its courts. During their residence in that
-county, the hardships and privations of frontier
life in their sternest forms were the daily experi-
ence of himself and his family ; but his wife, who,
as well as he, had been nursed in the lap of plenty,
met the severe allotment with fortitude, and so
cheerfully bore herself through the ordeal of want
and discomfort, that no sense of discouragement
ever oppressed him. She was, verily, a helpmeet
to him in those days of adversity, and to her
unmurmuring accommodation of herself to her
<;hanged circumstances, and the words of cheer and
hope that came to him from her lips, he was greatly
indebted for the after success that crowned his
struggle with adverse fortune. Had a querulous,
discontented spirit influenced his life beneath that
lowly roof in Panola County, the energies of her
husband might have been sapped, and the outcome
of his career might have been very different from
what it was — an outcome that she now looks
back upon with just pride and pleasure. She
richly merits the quietude and affluence she now

enjoys in the evening of her days, underneath the
shade of the tree she helped her husband to plant,
during the dark time of their earlier Texian life.

In 1839 Isaac Van Zandt moved to Marshall and
engaged in the active practice of the law. Success
attended him from the start, and he rose rapidly
to the front among his legal competitors. Soon the
minds of the people around him turned upon him
as a suitable man to represent them in the Congress
of the Republic. To the sessions of 1840-41, with
great unanimit3' they sent him as their delegate to
the lower house of that legislative body, and the
zeal he manifested in this new sphere of action,
not only in behalf of the interests of his immediate
constituents, but of those of the people at large,
endeared him to the whole country, and the ability
he displayed in the committee rooms and on the
floor of the House, commanded the respect and ad-
miration of his co-legislators. He speedily became
a marked man both at the bar and in the halls of

His next ofl9cial position was that of Charge
d'Affairs to the United States, which was conferred
upon him by President Houston, in 1842. During
the two years that he resided at Washington City,
as the diplomatic agent of the Republic, he labored
assiduously with the government to which he was
accredited, to bring about the annexation of Texas
to the United States, and when this measure had
become a certainty in the near future, he resigned
the oflSce and returned home.

In 1845 he was a delegate to the convention that
completed the work of annexation, and framed the
first constitution of the "Lone Star" State. In
that body there were many brilliant intellects, and
in the galaxy his was an orb of no mean magni-
tude. Some of the members were far older than he,
and among them, no doubt, could have been found
a profounder jurist than he as yet had had time to
become ; but on questions of State policy, and of
what was needful as component elements of the
organic law they were framing, he displayed a
wisdom that left its impress upon the instrument
that came from their hands, and won for him the
prestige of unusual statemanship.

In 1847 he was before the people of Texas as a
candidate for the office of Governor, and while
making an active, and what promised to be a suc-
cessful canvass of the State, he was stricken down
by yellow fever, at Houston, and died there on
the eleventh day of October. In fact, during the
canvass his election was recognized as a certainty.
His remains were transferred to Marshall, and by
loving hands laid in the city cemetery, where to his
memory they have reared a monument that will tell

■' - "• " *?■*'# -*i




to the stranger where sleeps a man whom all Texians
of his day delighted to honor.

In person he was above the average stature, erect
and well proportioned. His head was covered with
abundant locks, that were as black as the raven's
plumage. His face was comely and attractive in a
marked degree ; his dark gray eyes sparkled with
intelligence, and his look habitually wore the im-
press of frankness and benignity. His carriage
was easy, graceful and dignified, and his manners
were urbane and courteous. In a word, none
could come near him and not feel that they were in
the presence of a true gentleman.

This sketch would be incomplete with no mention
of the fact that Isaac Van Zandt was a Christian.
From his early youth he had been a member of the
Baptist Church, and his exemplary walk in life
indicated that revealed truth had been heartily ac-
cepted by him, and been allowed to mould his
heart and character. The serene composure of his
dying hours, and the devout expressions of Chris-
tian hope and resignation that characterized them,
grandly witnessed that : —

" The chamber where the good man meets his fate,
Is privileged beyond the common walks
Of virtuous life — quite on the verge of Heaven."



Mrs. F. C. Van Zandt was born in Louisa
County, Va., March 4th, 1816. Her parents,
William and Ann (Cooke) Lipscomb, were both
Virginians. In the fall of 1826 she, with the other
members of her father's family, moved to Franklin
County, Tenn. Her life here for the next
seven or eight years passed quietly and pleas-
antly. The State then afforded few opportunities
for the acquisition of that education acquired
through schools ; but, despite this disadvantage
the years of her girlhood, passed in the society of
a sainted mother, were by no means devoid of
broadening, educating influences. Even then she
began to evince that sweetness of disposition
and remarkable strength and force of character
that have all through life distinguished her ; that
rare blending of the clear foresight and cool judg-
ment of a man with the quick intuition and warm,
tender sympathy of a woman.

In December, 1833, she married Isaac Van Zandt,
afterwards such a prominent figure in Texas
history, and then barely upon the threshold of
manhood. Those older Texians now living who re-
member him, remember him as a man of noble and
commanding presence. Even as a youth his fine,
intellectual countenence, indicative of sensibility,
thought and purpose ; the grace and dignity of his
carriage and his polished and genial manners, gave
to him an air of distinctiou and inspired respect
and confidence.

Upon his death Mrs. Van Zandt was left with five
children, the oldest of them twelve years of age.


She had loved her husband with a strength and
depth of devotion that would have been impossible
in a woman of a less noble spirit ; but, now alone,
she calmly took up the work that the two had begun
and set herself first of all to the task of raising and
educating her children. The friend to whom she
looked for advice and help during the early years
of her widowhood was Mr., afterwards Colonel, J.
M. Clough, who had been her husband's partner,
and who later married her oldest daughter, Louisa.
Col. Clough relieved her as far as possible of all
business troubles and aided her no little in the
direction of her children. Mrs. Van Zandt had
joined the Primitive Baptist Church soon after her
marriage, but later became much interested in the
meetings of Alexander Campbell, and, convinced
that his views in regard to the Bible and the Church
were correct, in 1852, at the first opportunity
offered her, united with the Christian Church.
Four years later she took her younger children to
Tennessee to put them under the teaching of Mr.
Tolbert Fanning, at Franklin College. Her princi-
pal object in selecting this instructor and institu-
tion was to have them properly taught the Word of
God, for, above all things else, she desired them to
be Christian men and women. They returned to
Marshall when this school work was finished, and
there her children were married. To-day all of
them live in Fort Worth: Mrs. Clough, whose
husband, gallant Lieut. -Col. J. N. Clough, of the
Seventh Texas, was lulled at Fort Donelson ; Maj.
K. M. Van Zandt, Dr. I. L. Van Zindt, Mrs. E. J.



Beall (with whom her mother makes her home),
and Mrs. J. J. Jarvis.

Mrs. Van Zandt is a woman remarkably
young for her years, which now number nearly
four score. She lives surrounded by her chil-
dren and her children's children, and finds re-
newed in them her own youth. An earnest, de-
voted Christian, one may see her in her accustomed
seat in church on almost every Sunday of the year.
Her faith is one of works, too, as well as prayer,
and all love her for the kind word and helping hand
so often given in time of trouble. Her only wish

has been realized — all of her children having grown
up to be active Christian men and women, honored
for their integrity and their adherence to what they
believe to be right. Their mother, with her un-
swerving faith in the Bible as an all-sufficient guide,
with her untiring earnestness in every good work;
and with her unfailing cheerfulness in every time of
trouble, is to them and their children a continual
inspiration to lead useful and worthy lives. Truly
that saying of her Master, than which there can be
no higher praise, maybe spoken of her also: "She
hath done what she could."



Albert E. Devine, youngest son of the late Judge
Thomas J. Devine, was born March 28th, 1862, in
San Antonio, Texas, where he received his early
schooling. He took a literary course of study at
Rock Hill College, Maryland, and after making a
tour in South America and Africa attended Cum-
berland University, Tennessee, in 1883, from the
law department of vrhich he graduated the year fol-
lowing. He then visited the Paciflc Coast cities,
returned to San Antonio and engaged in stock rais-
ing in which he has excelled as a breeder of fine
registered and standard bred horses. At San
Antonio in 1882 was organized the banking firm of

Smith & Devine, of which he became a member.
He married, in 1890, Miss Bessie Weil, of San
Antonio, a daughter of Henry Weil, a well-known
stock-raiser of Southwestern Texas, long identified
with the best interests of that section.

One child has been born of this union. Mr.
Devine has never engaged in politics but under Gov-
ernor Culbertson served as a member of the Board
of Directors of the West Texas Insane Asylum.

He is a wide-awake, progressive and able man,
thoroughly in sympathy with all movements that
promise the promotion of the welfare of his people
and State.



James H. Astin was born in Marion County,
Ala., in November, 1833; came to Texas in 1854;
shortly thereafter went to California, where he fol-
lowed the life of a miner until 1859; returned to
Texas ; entered the Confederate army at the open-
ing of Ihe war between the States as a soldier in
Company I., Fourth Texas Cavalry, Hood's Brigade,
with which he served until severely wounded at the
battle of Chickamauga ; returned to Texas and settled

in Navarro County; in 1864 married Miss Celia
Allsbrook in that county, and a year later moved to
Bryan; followed various occupations for two or
three years and then rented a piece of land and
moved into the Brazos bottom; his sole earthly
possessions at that time were a wagon and a team
and ten dollars in money and a family consisting of
a wife and baby ; rented for ten years and then in
1877 made his first purchase ; has bought land from



time to time since and now owns 7,000 acres, 6,000
of which are under cultivation ; raises about 5,000
bales of cotton annually and is considered one
of the wealthiest planters in his section of the

His wife died in December, 1874. She left him
four sons, James Robert, now an attorney at law at
Dallas ; William E. , a planter in Robertson County ;
John E. , on the farm with his father, and Joseph
P., bookkeeper in the Hearne National Bank.

In 1878 Mr. Astin married Miss Ona Ward, at
Bryan, Texas. The issue of this union has been
three children : Irwin, Daisy, and Roger Q. He is
a man of unbounded energy and exceptionally fine
judgment and is thorough-going in his business

methods. He has grown wealthy, as he expresses

Online LibraryJohn Henry BrownIndian wars and pioneers of Texas → online text (page 92 of 135)