Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 2, Number 3, September, 1992 Page: 164
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Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal
good crops of cabbage, lettuce, sweet and Irish potatoes, melons, celery,
pumpkins, squashes, tomatoes, vines and vegetables of all kinds are reared with
little care and attention. It is also excellent for fruits, pears, peaches, plums,
grapes, etc., experiments having been made on a small scale with all of them.
Though Rock Island is out in the prairie about half a mile there is plenty of timber
convenient suitable for building purposes, consisting of live-oak, pin-oak, post-
oak, water-oak, burr-oak, black-jack, hickory, walnut, pecan, cottonwood,
cypress, willow, sycamore, elm, ash, mulberry, hackberry, wild china, wild
peach, holly, and other varieties. Among these timbers may be found appropriate
woods for the manufacture of the finest furniture (some of our walnut having
already been exported for that purpose) gin-stands, hay-presses, side-boards,
plow-stocks, wagons, ax and hoe handles, brooms, buckets, fence and other
posts, and, indeed, almost any of the necessary wooden vessels used in the
The rich, waving grasses of the prairies afford ample scope for the success
of the stock interests. Second only to the agricultural interests is the stock raising
industry, the settlement being about equally divided into timbered and prairie
lands, affords ample facilities and unlimited advantages for stock grazing and
raising. Its vast stretches of up-land prairie, while some less productive of general
crops than the river and creek bottom lands, affords ample grazing for countless
herds of cattle and horses, to say nothing of the immense crops of hay yielded
by the native grasses for nothing but the trouble of harvesting. As before stated,
the Colorado river traverses the county near its center, from the northwest to the
southeast, and its tributaries extending on either side to the remotest parts of the
county, afford an abundance of rich alluvial bottom lands to agriculturists, while
the high rolling prairies that intervene, very much of which is scarcely less fertile,
is partially occupied by the stock raisers. Many gentlemen have fenced up large
tracts of country and
KEEP THEIR HERDS ENCLOSED,
while others avail themselves of the "free grass" afforded by the thousands of
acres still unfenced, so that while the cotton crop, which is the chief one made
for market, brings a handsome annual income to the county, the revenue derived
from the sale of beef cattle and other stock, which costs far less labor, is almost
if not equally as great. Improved breeds of cattle, horses and jacks are constantly
being introduced and the quality of the stock greatly enhanced.
THE DRAINAGE OF ROCK ISLAND
is excellent, the fall of nine inches being sufficient to lead the rainfall to the Pin-
oak and Mustang creeks on the south, while the Sandies on the north and the
Crasco on the northwest and west perform a similar service for that vicinity.
Town property is not sold on speculations, lots being rated very cheap; and the
town offers a good opening for all kinds of business. Immigration cars come in
TWO EXCURSIONS PER MONTH
bring in prospectors from different parts of the country, the able and efficient
management of the Aransas Pass courteously affording every aid and encourage-
ment to the company and to intending settlers. The town was laid off in January,
1896, and the first building erected by Mr. D. A. Black in February last. Notwith-
standing the depressed condition of the times the growth of Rock Island has been
phenomenally steady, and on an extra "boom" of course, but moving right along
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Nesbitt Memorial Library. Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 2, Number 3, September, 1992, periodical, September 1992; Columbus, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth151386/m1/36/?q=nesbitt%20memorial%20library%20journal: accessed May 25, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Nesbitt Memorial Library.