The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 98, July 1994 - April, 1995 Page: 82
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
a "Public Debt Paper" in 1854. He also received a headright certificate
in 1838, for having been a Texas citizen prior to March 2, 1836, granti-
ng one league (4,428 acres) for grazing herds, and one labor (177
acres) for tillage.4
Dix was also one of six petitioners who on May 23, 1837, requested es-
tablishment of a seminary in Coles Settlement at the First Congress of
the Republic of Texas. This was to be the first school chartered in the
new republic, and was the precursor of Baylor Female College at Inde-
On February 15, 1847, John James Dix left home to become involved
in the Mexican War. He was first employed as a sutler on Brazos Island
near the mouth of the Rio Grande, but in June accepted duties of a
quartermasterman at sixty dollars a month under Captain Ogden of the
U.S. Army.6 The quartermaster department on Brazos Island was respon-
sible for transferring foodstuffs, troops, and livestock from ocean-going
vessels onto river steamboats for shipment up the Rio Grande. This was
an integral link in the supply line of Gen. Zachary Taylor's army in
northern Mexico. Dix kept a daily journal for a year. Thus, began a disci-
plined tradition of documenting personal and business notations in vari-
ous diaries, daybooks, ledgers, stock records, and journals.
Cynthia Jemima McNeill (1840-1890o) was wed to John James Dix on
October 21, 1856, at Fort Merrill, Live Oak County, Texas.' They began
a ranching and farming operation, Rancho Ramirefia, at the confluence
of Ramirefia and Lagarto Creeks, near where their waters flowed into
the Nueces River. Felix A. Blucher, agent and attorney for Victoriano
Ramirez, transacted this land exchange from an original grant by the
Spanish crown to Jose Antonio and Jose Victoriano Ramirez." During
this period Blucher was probably influential in directing Dix toward the
vocation of surveying, in which he continued for many years.
John Salmon "Rip" Ford (1815-1897) formed a Ranger force in No-
vember 1859, under orders from Gov. H. R. Runnels to quell raids by
Mexican revolutionaries led by Juan Nepomuceno "Cheno" Cortina
along the Rio Grande. Ford had been an attorney, physician, legislator,
journalist, and surveyor, and served as adjutant for John Coffee (Jack)
4 Certificate No. 267, signed by Stephen R. Roberts, president of Board of Land Commission-
ers for Washington County, dated Feb. 1, 1838 (General Land Office, Archives and Records Di-
* Lois Smith Murray, Baylor at Independence (Waco: Baylor University Press, 1972), 5, 6.
6Journal ofJohn James Dix (1847-1860), Dix collection.
' L. E. Daniell, Personnel of the Texas State Government, With Sketches of Representatzve Men of Texas
(San Antonio: Maverick Printing House, 1892), 335
1 Book 3, PP. 138, 139, 284-287, Deed Records of Live Oak County, George West, Texas.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 98, July 1994 - April, 1995, periodical, 1995; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101216/m1/110/: accessed March 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.