The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 11, July 1907 - April, 1908 Page: 61
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Reminiscences of Reconstruction in Texas.
fere, because he knows the Coke people are right and that the Davis
followers are wrong. You all know me; you know that I live
in Austin, and that here is all I have. You live in Austin,
and all you have is here. It is not to the interest of the whites
and blacks of this city to be fighting each other. If the conflict
is kept up, you are all liable to be killed. A few bad white men
are misleading you, and when they get you into a fight with the
white people, cowards as they are, they will run away and let the
white people kill you. I again order you to disperse and go to
To the mayor's surprise, when he stopped talking at least half
of the negroes stepped out of the ranks and said, "Nobody shan't
hurt Mr. Wheeler, so dey shan't." He then said, "I am going
to town for your good, for if I don't go you will all be killed."
Hill stepped in front of the mayor and said, "You shall not go."
The mayor replied, "As a free American citizen I have a right to
go where I please if I am not interfering with the rights of some
other person," and at the same time walked rapidly towards Hill,
who began to back up the slope until he got to the gate of the
arsenal enclosure. On reaching that, he said, "You can tell your
people that we will hold this arsenal or die on the door sill." The
mayor replied, "If you and your little crowd stay here one hour,
you will all be dead men."
Two bad negroes had followed the mayor up the hill presenting
their guns as if ready to fire at him. He told them several times
to change the position of their guns and not to shoot. They did
not shoot, but kept their guns in the threatening attitude. When
the mayor and Hill reached the gate, Cox, who belonged to the
same fraternity as the mayor and who had observed the conduct of
the two negroes, placed himself as near the mayor as possible, fol-
lowing him entirely across the Avenue and until the negroes ceased
their threatening demonstration.
The mayor ran rapidly toward town, meeting along the way
armed men and turning them back. He soon heard the long roll,
which was being beaten on Congress Avenue.' Just after he was
arrested some person had ridden on horseback up this avenue crying
out, "The negroes have the mayor." Thereupon the stores were
'The principal business street of Austin.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 11, July 1907 - April, 1908, periodical, 1908; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101045/m1/65/: accessed September 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.