The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 52, July 1948 - April, 1949 Page: 129
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often settled without benefit of the judiciary. He was barely
thirty-two when he participated in the Battle of San Jacinto. In
the prime of manhood during the ten years when the new nation
was finding its feet, so to speak, he served it as lawyer, judge, and
legislator, while in his declining years, he saw Texas triumphantly
welcomed into the Great Sisterhood.
His service as a journalist, alcalde, agitator, soldier is so iden-
tified with the Texas Revolution; his career as a lawyer, legislator,
and judge is so intertwined with the beginnings of Texas law
and its administration; his comradeship with Austin, Travis, the
Whartons, and with other leading men of the period so intimate;
and his general character and temperament so consonant with
the traditions of the frontier, that it is doubtful whether any
other of the younger men of that period exercised a profounder
influence at once upon the history, the legal system, and the
manners of the people than this scion of an old Georgia family
who came to San Felipe in June of 1827, a merry-hearted youth
Thus, as in Shakespearean historical drama, the periods and
climaxes in the life of Williamson curiously coincide with those
of the state itself.
Our author, however, is careful not to strip his hero down to
his public functions but makes of him a human being first of all.
The man had an uproarious sense of humor which nothing, not
even his own physical deformity, could suppress. He was nick-
named, with the merciless hazing of the frontier, "Three-Legged
Willie," because his stiff and twisted knee, resting in a wooden
peg, gave him the appearance of having three legs. On one occa-
sion, addressing the Legislature, he declared vehemently, "I go
against this bill with both my arms and all three of my legs."
On the stump an opponent, a medical man, accused him of
having killed two men in duels. "And how many people," re-
torted Williamson, "have you killed, Doctor, in the practice of
your profession?" In the heat of the political battle for annexa-
tion, Williamson, campaigning for statehood, named his newly
born son "Annexus."
It may renew our faith in democracy to read of a poli-
tician distinguished as a legislator, lawyer, soldier, judge, who
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 52, July 1948 - April, 1949, periodical, 1949; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101121/m1/137/: accessed August 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.