The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 63, July 1959 - April, 1960 Page: 405
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The History of Hempstead
times the oaks and the sand reminded me of Kent; but these oaks are
not the same species as ours, yet are the Texans fine trees. The dwarf
"Black Jack" is abundant all about.2
II. THE INTERDEPENDENCY OF HEMPSTEAD
AND THE RAILROAD MOVEMENT
At the time of Miss Murray's visit, work was progressing upon
the Houston and Texas Central Railroad, which was to bring
Hempstead into being. This railroad company had its genesis in
a convention held at Chappell Hill, Washington County, Texas,
on July 3, 1852. Although the railroad was largely the project of
leading business men in Houston, the company included Doctor
Richard Rogers Peebles and James W. McDade, the organizers
of the Hempstead Town Company.s
On December 29, 1856, these two men entered into an agree-
ment to form the Hempstead Town Company
for the purpose of laying off and building up a City or Town to be
called Hempstead in the County of Austin in the State of Texas, at or
about the Fiftieth mile of the Houston and Texas Central Railway
upon the line thereof from the City of Houston in said State toward
the Brazos and Red Rivers upon the contemplated line of the said
Railway, which town is to be located upon the certain tract of land
this day sold and conveyed by the said Peebles and his wife Mary
Ann by deed of even date herewith to the said McDade which land
is described in said deed as follows to wit: "Beginning at a stake on
a mound inside of the head right league of Jared E. Groce Jr. ...
The area comprised being (2ooo acres) Two thousand acres of land.4
The company began operation immediately. In 1857, when the
railroad was in operation only to Cypress City, the twenty-five-
mile station, Hempstead was being built.
2Amelia M. Murray, Letters from the United States, Cuba and Canada (New
York, 1856), 293. Andrew F. Muir, of Houston, Texas, called this quotation to the
attention of the writer.
STri-Weekly Telegraph (Houston), May 4, 1859, lists the Board of Directors. See
also St. Clair Griffin Reed, A History of the Texas Railroads and of Transportation
Conditions under Spain and Mexico and the Republic and the State (Houston,
1941), 67-68. Chapter IX deals with the Galveston and Red River Railway Com-
pany and Houston and Texas Central Railway Company.
4Peebles to McDade, December 29, 1856 (MS., Deed Records of Waller County,
County Clerk's Office, Hempstead), A, 631-634. "Hempstead .. was named after
Dr. G. S. B. Hempstead of Portsmouth, Ohio, brother-in-law of Dr. R. R. Peebles,
a founder of the town," states the Houston Chronicle, January 18, 1950.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 63, July 1959 - April, 1960, periodical, 1960; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101186/m1/509/: accessed May 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.