Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 8, Number 1, January, 1998 Page: 42
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Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal
Gen. Houston's orders, Capt. Mosely Baker
had ordered the burning of the town of San
Felipe, when the Texans retreated across the
Brazos. As the goods were to be burnt, any
soldier was permitted to carry off what he
wanted. Among the goods in Huff's store were
some bibles, left there by Sumner Bacon. To
the astonishment of his friends, Secrest selected
a small pocket bible. The bible was his com-
panion through the campaign. He preserved it
carefully and read it attentively. Many years
after, at a camp-meeting near Rutersville, Wash
Secrest presented himself for the prayers of the
church and professed religion. At an experi-
ence meeting held on the grounds, he stated
that a sudden and unaccountable impulse seized
him to take the bible at San Felipe, and that
reading it had brought him to realize his lost
condition as a sinner. From that time, until his
death, which took place in Columbus, in 1855,
he maintained a consistent Christian character.
William B. Scates, living near the town
of Weimar, an old veteran, is one of three who
still live that were the signers of the Declara-
tion of Independence, whose action changed the
flag under which our people rallied, from the
white, red and green of the Republican party
of Mexico, to the azure field and the golden
star of the Republic of Texas.
Gail and Thomas H. Borden, with Jo-
seph Baker, were the founders of the "Tele-
graph" first published at San Felipe de Austin.
Gail Borden was the first collector of customs
at Galveston. He is famous as the inventor of
"Condensed Milk." He died in 1874, just as he
had completed his cherished object of estab-
lishing works in Colorado county for utilizing
to the best advantage, the surplus cattle of
Western Texas. He was successful in various
inventions for preserving articles of food for
transportation over long distances, and in the
smallest bulk consistent with the retention of
its nutritious and palatable qualities. He spent
twenty years of active life in Texas, studying
and developing his resources for the produc-
tion of food. As early as 1849, he was engaged
in the manufacture of "Borden's Meat Biscuit, "
which received the commendation of the high-
est authorities, both in America and Europe.
But this proved a financial failure to him. His
long cherished desire to make available the sur-
plus beef product of Western Texas, induced
him as one of the last enterprises of his life, to
establish the extensive meat works of the
"Borden Meat Preserving Company" that was
located at Borden, in Colorado county, on the
borders of a large range, where cattle could be
obtained without undergoing the fatigue and
discomforts of having been driven long dis-
tances. This undertaking was said to be a suc-
cess in every way, as long as he lived; after his
death the machinery was all removed North by
his son. The principal factory building still re-
mains at Borden, is two stories high, and is
constructed partly of stone and partly of wood,
and is enlarged by additions on different sides,
in which were placed the engine, tanks, pumps
and other machinery necessary to operate an
establishment of this kind. Cisterns are placed
in different parts of the building, convenient of
access to the places necessary to be supplied
with water, which is brought in pipes two hun-
dred and fifty yards to the factory, from a res-
ervoir in the creek, upon the banks of which
the meat works are built.
Colorado county presents a beautiful,
undulating level, with natural drainage for all
purposes. There are but few or no stagnant pools
of water in this county; consequently the people
are quite healthy. There are three beautiful lakes
in this county, that abound with fish and duck:
Adkins lake, Eagle lake and the Miller lake.
Adkins lake is twelve miles from Columbus.
The lake is in the shape of a horse shoe, about
one half a mile long, two hundred and fifty
yards wide, and about six feet deep. The coun-
try surrounding this lake is quite rich and finely
timbered. The county is well watered by streams
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Nesbitt Memorial Library. Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 8, Number 1, January, 1998, periodical, January 1998; Columbus, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth151402/m1/42/?q=nesbitt%20memorial%20library%20journal: accessed February 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Nesbitt Memorial Library.