The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 55, July 1951 - April, 1952 Page: 42
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
his duties faithfully and well" and was said to have been one of
ten who wanted to continue the pursuit of the Mexicans when
the other members of the expedition decided to turn back.25
In 1846 Rice settled on Brushy Creek at a site then called Blue
Hill but later known as Rice's Crossing. In 1848 he and Wash-
ington Anderson circulated a petition requesting the formation
of a new county.26 The population of the proposed county was
so small that even women and children signed the petition, but
the county was created later in the same year. Rice was a member
of the commission which selected the county seat.27
Rice had a reputation for being first, as even the court docket
will affirm. The first civil case tried in Williamson County was
M. C. Hamilton vs. James O. Rice, for trespass to try title.28 The
first tavern in the new county was established by Rice; he was
also an early postmaster.29
By 185o Rice was the second wealthiest man in the county,
paying taxes on a $15,000 valuation. For the next ten years Rice
apparently lived a quiet and peaceful life. Shortly before 186o
he rejoined the rangers and, his wife having died, arranged for
a guardian for his daughter, a minor.30
In 1864 Rice operated a tanyard between the two forks of the
San Gabriel approximately where the Georgetown Country Club
is now located.31 The last official record concerning Rice is a
deed which he executed in 1873.32 The actual date of his death
is not known, but supposedly he died before 1900oo and was buried
in Georgetown.33 Thus passed one of the most colorful of Texas
25Memoirs of John S. Ford (MS., Archives Collection, University of Texas Li-
brary), II, 264-274.
26Makemson, Sketch of the First Settlement and Organization of Williamson
County, Texas, 18.
soFiles No. R-1 and R-2, Nancy D. Rice, Probate Court, Williamson County
(MS., County Courthouse, Georgetown, Texas).
slUndated clipping, Williamson County Scrapbooks (Wm. L. Mann Papers, Ar-
chives Collection, University of Texas Library).
32Deed Records, Williamson County, Texas (MS., County Courthouse, George-
town, Texas), Vol. 16, p. 468.
saBrown, Annals of Travis County and the City of Austin, Chapter V, p. 26.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 55, July 1951 - April, 1952, periodical, 1952; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101139/m1/64/: accessed June 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.