Reminiscences of reconstruction in Texas ; and, Reminiscences of Texas and Texans fifty years ago Page: 33 of 58
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TEXAS AND TEXANS FIFTY YEARS AGO. 33
Navarro county was taken from the district and given to the Ninth.
By Act of the Legislature in 1852 or 1853, a new judicial district
was created, called the Thirteenth, embracing all of the counties
of the Third District north and east of the Brazos river, towit:
Brazos, Robertson, Falls, Limestone, Hill, Navarro, Freestone and
Leon counties. Henry J. Jewett was the first judge of this district.
Later on a new county called Madison, formed out of the
territory of Grimes, Walker and Leon, was added to the district;
and in January, 1858, Brazos county was taken from the district.
The writer arrived in Leon county in 1851, in which county he
resided continuously until 1883. He had, therefore, an opportunity
to become acquainted with the judges and many of the lawyers,
resident and non-resident, of the Thirteenth District, who
practiced in it in the early fifties, and in the old Third District.
Of the resident lawyers of the Third and Thirteenth Districts, he
remembers the following: Asa M. Willie, of Washington county;
H. J. Jewett, R. S. Gould, John W. Durant, T. W. Blake, Thos.
V. Mortimer, James Gregg, A. H. Weir, William Holman and
Aaron Kitchel, of Leon county; F. L. Barziza, of Robertson
county; Charley Stewart, Thomas Harrison and T. P. Aycock, of
Falls county; D. M. Prendergast and Joseph Lynn, of Limestone
county; R. Q. Mills, C. M. Winkler, William Croft and A. Beaton,
of Navarro county; John Gregg, W. L. Moody, James Walker and
John Whitt, of Freestone county. Of non-resident and visiting
lawyers, the writer remembers the following: Henderson Yoakum,
W. A. Leigh, A. M. Branch and A. T. Wiley, of Walker county;
John H. Reagan, Reuben Reeves and A. T. Rainey, of Anderson
county; W. B. Ochiltree, of Nacogdoches county, and Richard
Coke, of McLennan county.
As a meager tribute to the worth and merit of some of these
men, the writer offers the following short sketches, embracing simply
his recollection of them, and the impressions made on his mind
as to their individual excellences. None of them were natives
of Texas, but they gave to their adopted State a loyalty and devotion
that could not be surpassed by any native. Restricted by the
limitations of a new and sparsely populated country, yet they did
their whole duty in helping to lay deep and strong the foundations
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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/m1/33/: accessed June 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .