Reminiscences of reconstruction in Texas ; and, Reminiscences of Texas and Texans fifty years ago Page: 18 of 58
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18 RECONSTRUCTION IN TEXAS.
in September, before the election in November, a convention of representative
democrats or Confederates from the three counties
assembled at Fairfield, and selected, or it would be more proper
to say conscripted, three men, one from each county, to run for the
Legislature. Horatio Hearne was selected from Robertson county,
H. Manning from Freestone, and the writer from Leon. Success
in the district was almost a forlorn hope, considering the apathy
of the Confederates or democrats and the negro majority, but it
was understood that every member of the convention would go
home, go to work, and induce every white man, if possible, not only
to register, but to turn out and vote. It was also agreed that each
candidate should devote all of his energies to his own county.
With this understanding, the writer went aack to his county and
went earnestly to work. In this work of regeneration he was efficiently
and nobly aided by such men as Gen. W. B. Middleton,
Col. J. W. Durant, Capt. J. E. Anderson, Capt. J. N. Black, Capt.
D. C. Carrington, Capt. W. M. Johnson, Hon. Bruno Durst and
numbers of others. Barbecues and public speaking were had at
every village and crossroads in the county, the people urged and
persuaded in every possible way to register and turn out and vote.
Some three or four weeks were spent in the county in this way.
The effort was not in vain. The people of the county once more
asserted their manhood, registered and voted, and the result in
Leon county was that the writer received every vote cast except
sixty, and the whole ticket received a large majority in the county.
The same effective work was done in Freestone and Robertson
counties, and, in fact, all over the State, for an overwhelming
majority of democrats were elected to the Legislature, or rather to
the House of Representatives. The writer and Mr. Manning were
elected by large majorities. Hearne was defeated by Mr. Salter,
an independent, but good democrat.
At the election in Centreville an incident occurred that illustrates
the spirit of Radical rule that dominated Texas at that time.
The Radical boss and manipulator of the counties of Robertson,
Freestone and Leon, with some two or three lieutenants, was present
at Centreville on the morning of the first day of the election.
After the polls were opened the writer proceeded to circulate/
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Wood, William D. Reminiscences of reconstruction in Texas ; and, Reminiscences of Texas and Texans fifty years ago, book, 1902; (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth14387/m1/18/: accessed April 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .