Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 9, Number 1, January, 1999 Page: 42
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Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal
Jackson, and we returned to school in Sept.
1860, but we were surprised that after a few
weeks my father came for us. They felt they
could not leave us so far from them in such
When we arrived home we found ev-
erything about ready to start on the then long
trip. At this time there were several railroads
had been built, and we lived 2/2 miles from
Macon Depot. On this road we started our trip
to Texas arriving at Memphis on the Memphis
and Ohio R. R. Here we boarded the John
Simon, then said to be the largest boat on the
Mississippi. At Memphis we were joined by
Mr. and Mrs. Paine and son, Mr. Joe Ferrell,
and Mr. Jim Hickey. The last two named young
men were my father's guests on the trip to
Texas. We formed a congenial party. We landed
at the mouth of the Red River where all ve-
hicles were assembled and made ready for our
overland trip. I forgot to say that while on the
John Simon, the Natchez was drawn up beside
our boat. We were going down the river, the
Natchez was returning from New Orleans, and
here we saw Jeff Davis and Mrs. Davis on the
deck of the Natchez. A great cheer was given
him, but little did anyone think what a part he
was to play in our country's history. When we
landed the negroes seemed overjoyed to see us.
The next day, everything in readiness,
we continued our trip to our new home. We
never traveled on Sunday and sometimes
camped on Saturday that the negroes could do
washing and some extra cooking. One night I
waked to find it raining hard and water run-
ning under my cot. Mrs. Paine, mother and
sister and I were all taken to a home nearby.
Here we received a welcome and were given a
nice room and good beds, which we greatly
appreciated. We had breakfast in camp and soon
were again on our way. We were in our closed
carriage, Mr. and Mrs. Paine also in carriage,
Mr. Ferrell and Hickey on horses, sometimes
riding in a wagon. We bought provisions at the
towns we passed through and had little trouble
finding the necessary articles for camp life. We
necessarily traveled slow as we had to stop early
to have time to get all the tents in place and
supper cooked as we always had cold lunch at
As we came near an Indian town in East
Texas, and as they were the first in their native
dress we had ever seen, they were very inter-
esting to us. The first long moss we saw, my
sister and I gathered it and twined it around
our hats, and we cut palm leaves and had beau-
tiful green palm fans. Another thing I shall never
forget was hearing the negroes singing as they
traveled, and they seemed to have no care or
trouble. Once or twice I was allowed to ride in
the wagon with my black mammy, and I felt it
a privilege indeed to be with her, as she was
never called on to help in anything in our trav-
eling. We had no table. My mother had a large
box for cooked food to be kept in. On this box
a cloth was spread and provision on it. A cof-
fee pot was placed on the ground by my mother.
My father bought six oak chairs. They
were called split bottom chairs. These chairs
we found very comfortable and useful in the
camp, and my mother felt she was very fortu-
nate in having them after her arrival in Texas.
I have the pleasure of having one of those chairs
in my home now.
My father had bought land near Co-
lumbus on a visit he had made a few years be-
fore we came here to live. We thought from
letters we had had and what we had been told
that we were coming to an "Eldorado," but we
found it much like other countries, that there
must be work or little results.
After a pleasant but uneventful trip we
arrived at Columbus and camped on the east
bank of the Colorado River where Hans camp
site now is. My father and Mr. Ferrell crossed
in the ferry boat and went to his step brother's
land office, and he came over to the camp at
once and had us come to his house, Mrs.
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Nesbitt Memorial Library. Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 9, Number 1, January, 1999, periodical, January 1999; Columbus, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth151405/m1/42/?q=nesbitt%20memorial%20library%20journal: accessed May 24, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Nesbitt Memorial Library.