The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 5, July 1901 - April, 1902

Texas and Texans .Fifty Years Ago. 113
REMINISCENCES OF TEXAS AND TEXANS FIFTY
YEARS AGO.
W. D. WOOD.
When we look backwards into the long ago, and conjure from the
recesses of memory the scenes and incidents of fifty years past, time
plays at witchery, making real the shades and shadows that flit
across our recollection, in the midst of which we seem again to live
and move and have our being. The old soldier loves to tell of the
incidents of his soldier life, and in the telling fights his battles over
again. The old man is garrulous, and he delights to recall the men
and the occurrences of his earlier days and set them moving, in his
mind's eye, upon the stage of action, as if they were a part of the
actual living present. As an old man, I propose to make a note of
some of the things I saw and heard, and of some of the men I knew
in Texas fifty years ago.
By no means do I intend to write my own biography. Suffice it
to say, by way of introduction, that I am a native of North Caro-
lina, reared mainly in the State of Indiana. This latter State I
left when twenty-two years of age for Texas by way of Alabama,
with no other fortune than a license to practice law issued by the
supreme court of Indiana and the hope that animated thousands
of others who came to Texas of bettering my condition in that then
new State. Arriving in Alabama I found my means exhausted; so
perforce I halted in that State and taught an old field school, in
order to obtain means to complete my journey. From Alabama I
walked to Texas, and arrived at Centerville, Leon county, on the
14th day of November, 1851. My brother, who was a printer,
accompanied me. As we had no means, and meat and bread,
clothes and shelter, were practical pressing necessities that could
not be well ignored or put off, we concluded to start a news-
paper at Centreville, if we could raise the money to buy the plant.
We thought that the novelty of the thing, in what was then almost
a wilderness, would attract attention and patronage and thus give
us an occupation that would enable us to earn our daily bread. We

Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 5, July 1901 - April, 1902. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101021/. Accessed December 28, 2014.