The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 69, July 1965 - April, 1966 Page: 543
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data were procured in over two hundred personal interviews.
But, importantly, wherever possible she has let Houston speak
for himself. He was marvelously articulate, never reticent, nor
ever at a loss for words. The pungency of his pen and the elo-
quence of his oratory are part of the rewarding revelation of this
In Sam Houston's Texas, Miss Flanagan's camera has recorded
historic landmarks identified with Houston's career, as well as
places he visited and sights he probably saw on his incessant
travels. The Texas Revolution, for instance, is recalled in such
scenes as the Old Stone Fort at Nacogdoches, site of a ringing
call-to-arms, and the gnarled Which-Way Tree, where the general
faced his moment of truth and then turned right to San Jacinto.
Houston's deep involvement with the land he loved was ex-
hibited in many ways, but never more tangibly than in the vari-
ous homes he made. This passion for sinking his roots in Texas
soil led to the establishment of seven different homes. Miss Flan-
agan has trained her camera upon them-or upon the spots where
once they stood. In one scene of haunting beauty, a pine tree
broods and towers above the solitude of Raven Hill. Cedar Point
on Galveston Bay, described by Houston as "a Fairy region ...
beneficial to my health," still harbors the enchantment that once
inspired those words. The succession of homes included those at
Nacogdoches, Grand Cane near Liberty, and Independence, and
also the two Huntsville homes, which still survive in the 196o's.
Each of these in its time supplied sanctuary and strength for its
owner, who weathered in his lifetime a staggering measure of
slander, reversals, and strife.
One segment of the book deals vividly with the gruelling
gubernatorial campaign of 1857. Joining forces with an itinerant
plow salesman, the sixty-four-year-old Houston hit the campaign
trail in a crimson buggy with huge gilt letters plugging "War-
wick's Patent Plow." They jogged 1,55o miles over East Texas
terrain in abominable weather, camping out fifty-eight nights;
and Houston made forty-seven speeches in sixty-seven days.
Though a losing battle, the effort was magnificent. Miss Flanagan,
sans buggy, retraces the route-an efficacious device for focusing
on such memorable settings as the old Excelsior Hotel in Jeffer-
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 69, July 1965 - April, 1966, periodical, 1966; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117144/m1/621/: accessed August 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.