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The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 40, July 1936 - April, 1937

Memoirs of Mrs. Annie P. Harris

The subject of this sketch was born in Philadelphia, May 2, 1823.
Her parents were also Philadelphians, belonging to the Society of
Friends, or Quakers, as they were often called. Her father must
have possessed an inclination to roam, for very soon after his mar-
riage he made his way out to Missouri, which at that early period
was not even a state; was only a territory.
Not being successful in that country, he returned to Pennsyl-
vania, and it was at that period that the subject of this sketch
was born.
Mrs. Harris' maiden name was Annie Pleasants Fisher. Her
father was Mr. S. Rhoads Fisher,2 and her mother, Miss Ann
Pleasants. When the little daughter, Annie, was only five years
of age, the parents made another move, this time going to Ten-
nessee. She remembers that while in Nashville, she saw President
Andrew Jackson and his wife, also General Sam Houston, at that
time quite a young man.
It was some time in the year 1830 that Mr. Fisher joined
Stephen F. Austin's colony to go to Texas,8 and as early as that
period he had decided to settle in the town of Matagorda.4 He
did not, however, move his family out to Texas until the winter
of 1832.5 They then embarked for New Orleans, on a large and
handsome ship, The Archer, but as she was new and untried, she
came very near being lost in a storm off Cape Hatteras. Between
1Given to the University of Texas by ,Mrs. C. L. Davenport, daughter
of Mrs. Harris by her second husband, John W. Harris. Valuable assist-
ance in the preparation of this manuscript was given by Mrs. Davenport.
'Thrall, H. S., A Pictorial History of Texas, 539; Baker, D. W. C.,
A Texas Scrap Book, 279.
'This statement is borne out in S. Rhoads Fisher's letters of August 14,
1830, and of August 23 of the same year. The Austin Papers, II, 462-
65, 471.
4Ibid., 462-65.
'Letter of January 22, 1832, Ibid., 739, part of which is quoted here
since it adds to the interest of the move: "I have at last safely arrived
with my family, after an unpleasant and tedious passage. I am a good
deal occupied endeavoring to fix up some place to go in; and unfortunately
am deprived of Mrs. Fisher's management, in consequence of a fall she
received a day or two since."


Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 40, July 1936 - April, 1937. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. Accessed May 6, 2016.

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