Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 4, Number 2, May, 1994 Page: 51
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Colorado County, Texas:
Its Health, Climate, Soil, Advantages and Resources
by Rowan Green
Rowan Green was born in Georgia in 1833 and died in Jones County, Texas
on February 4, 1888.1 He was in Texas as early as 1860, where federal census takers
found him living and working as a physician in Wharton County.2 From November 4,
1861, when he enlisted, until May 17, 1865, when he was paroled, he served in the
Confederate army. For most of his tenure, he was a private in his regiment's medical
department. He was appointed surgeon on June 22, 1864.3 By 1870, he had abandoned
both Wharton County and the practice of medicine. Though he still referred to himself
as Dr. Rowan Green, he was employed by Colorado County as a deputy sheriff.4 Two
years later, he took up a new career. On February 7, 1872 he applied for a license to
practice law. He was granted the license eight days later.5 As a deputy sheriff, he had
gotten involved in numerous sales of land that had been seized andauctioned off because
the owner had failed to pay taxes. These auctions may have prompted him to begin
functioning as a real estate agent, and it was probably his interest in real estate which
stimulated him to begin his efforts in the mid 1870s to encourage immigration to
He made his first known such effort in August 1874, when he journeyed to
his home state with a number of circulars in hand. He returned in September, and, the
following month, heard from an Atlanta man that 200 families were ready to come to
Colorado County to settle on farms.6 Whether or not any of these families ever arrived
is unknown, but Green continued his efforts. In late 1875, he wrote a letter that praised
the advantages of living in Colorado County to the newspaper in Cuthbert, Georgia, the
Cuthbert Messenger. The letter was printed in the Messenger on November 24, 1875,
and in his hometown newspaper, The Colorado Citizen, on January 13, 1876. Green
later greatly expanded that letter fora 32 page pamphlet, which was printed at the Citizen
office in 1877. The pamphlet, as is indicated by its title, Colorado County, Texas: Its
Health, Climate, Soil, Advantages and Resources, is packed with information about the
Though nothing is known about the size of the print run or the distribution
of the pamphlet, original copies are now quite scarce, perhaps indicating that most of
1 See The Colorado Citizen, February 16, 1888.
2 See Eighth Census of the United States (1860), Wharton County, Texas.
3 See Confederate Pension Application 33104, Comptroller Records, Texas State Library and
Compiled Service Records of Confederate Soldiers Who Served in Organizations From the State of Texas
(M323). After the war, Green frequently referred to himself as "Major Rowan Green," but he seems never
to have formally held that rank.
4 See Police Court Minutes 1862-1876, page 189, and Deed Book P, page 69, Office of the County
Clerk, Colorado County, Texas.
5 See District Court Record Book E, page 182, Office of the District Clerk, Colorado County, Texas.
6 See The Colorado Citizen, August 6, 1874, September 10, 1874, and October 28, 1875.
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Nesbitt Memorial Library. Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 4, Number 2, May, 1994, periodical, May 1994; Columbus, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth151391/m1/3/?q=nesbitt%20memorial%20library%20journal: accessed June 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Nesbitt Memorial Library.