Southwestern Historical Quarterly
than have all the honors that came to him, and those same Hood
Texans were said to have had a place in the heart of Robert E.
Lee that no other command ever won.4
As Cassius pondered about Caesar, so might one conjecture:
"Upon what meat did this our Texan feed that he was grown so
great?" Is he to be explained in terms of his ancestry, his history,
or his environment? The history is too long for telling here; the
environment is intangible; the ancestry mixed. In this Sputnik
day, televised meetings of historical associations could have ani-
mated cartoons to depict the prodigious growth of the Texan be-
tween 1850 and 1860, or a color chart could divide the subject into
anatomical sections to show in which veins flowed Caucasian or
Negroid blood. There might be a trace of green for Irish immi-
grants and a bit of royal blue to indicate descendants of the "first
families of Virginia." In this less colorful and less animated situa-
tion, the more prosaic approach of the small print in the report
of the United States Census will have to suffice. A statistical ap-
proach can show something of where the Texan came from, what
he did for a living, to which organizations he belonged, and where
he worshipped. Almanacs and lists of imprints can fill in the de-
tails of his schooling, his travel facilities, and his reading habits.
One may also check what his contemporaries said of him.
The first United States Census was taken in Texas in 1850. A
decade later the Eighth Census stated: "The vast region of Texas
ten years since was comparatively a wilderness. It now has a popu-
lation of over 6oo,ooo [604, 15], and the rate of its increase is
given as 184 per cent."" Many of these migrants had come to Texas
to join their relatives, and most of the many were from the South,
where ties of blood were strong and cousins several degrees re-
moved were still considered "kissing kin." Their objective was to
better themselves, whether to establish homes, escape punishment,
or gamble on the rising value of land in an area "where mistakes
were forgotten and dreams could come true." According to a
4J. B. Polley, Hood's Texas Brigade: Its Marches, Its Battles, Its Achievements
(New York, 1910), 287; Douglas Southall Freeman, R. E. Lee: A Biography (4 vols.;
New York, 1934, 1935), IV, 155-162.
SEighth Census of the United States (Washington, 1864), Volume I, Population
of the United States in 1860, vi.
6Maybelle Virginia Glasgow Stone, Immigration to Texas, 1836-1845 (M. A. thesis,
University of Texas, 1938), 1.
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 62, July 1958 - April, 1959. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101173/. Accessed January 30, 2015.