The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 88, July 1984 - April, 1985 Page: 386
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Southwestern Hzstorical Quarterly
and his daughter Patience died before Horton himself did. The "cruel
war crushed his great heart." Within months of emancipation, on Sep-
tember 1, 1865, Albert Clinton Horton died at age sixty-six. Sycamore
Grove, a two-story mansion built of logs, "with the traditional upstairs
gallery overlooking the peaceful creek and fields," remained in the
family until its destruction in 1960."7
The question about Albert C. Horton is how a life that began with
such wild roots could produce such a civilized flower. Born in the back-
woods of Georgia, living on the Indian frontier in Alabama, and mov-
ing to Texas when the Anglo presence could barely be noticed on the
barren landscape, Horton spent his youth and early adulthood a pio-
neer. His gambling and later religious conversion marked him a man
of the frontier as much as did his quick temper. Horton, however, was
no boor from the brush; he also tried to tame the uncultivated fields
and forests and to bring commerce, schools, and churches to places
where there had been none. It is the development of the young man of
the woods into the mature planter of the coastal plain that remains an
intriguing puzzle. A final glance at his portrait hanging in the State
House provides no answers. It gives no hint that the stern, solemn fig-
ure of rectitude portrayed in the painting could disrupt the dignity of
government with fisticuffs or run for office by conducting a campaign
of embarrassing self-promotion. The firm posture in the portrait can
suggest both a religious man, certain of God's providence and guid-
ance, and a "vain" man, whose self-control masked an unyielding will
and a restless ambition."' A single portrait could not contain all the con-
tradictions: the revolutionary and the stable pillar of society, the propo-
nent and later opponent of the railroad, the successful man facing ulti-
57Johnson, A Hzstory of Texas and Texans, III, 1,540, Davenport Papers, Vols. VII, IX; Burleson
quoted in Carroll, A lizstory of Texas Baptists, 503 (ist quotation); Houston Post, Oct 16, 1970
(2nd quotation). "The cause of death was listed as pleurisy, an inflammation of the chest-cavity
membrane, a form of pneumonia " Turner, "A Towerlng Influence," 20.
58W. J. Jones to Lamar, Apr. 22, 1838, Gulick et al (eds), Papers of Mzrabeau Buonaparte
Lamar, II, 142
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 88, July 1984 - April, 1985, periodical, 1984/1985; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101210/m1/452/: accessed July 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.