Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 10, Number 1, January, 2000 Page: 36
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Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal
After his controversial stint as deputy sheriff, Rowan Green took up the prac-
tice of law. Shortly, however, he too had made it his business to encourage settlement in the
area, and, not coincidentally, to sell real estate. He made no attempt to attract foreigners,
turning his efforts instead to his home state, Georgia. He went to Georgia in August 1874,
carrying with him circulars that trumpeted the merits of moving to Colorado County. He
returned to Columbus in September, having set the wheels of migration in progress. His
efforts began to pay off in late 1875, when a number of families apparently followed his
suggestion. The same year, Green wrote a long letter praising the county which was pub-
lished in at least one Georgia newspaper. In 1876, he expanded the letter into a pamphlet.
The following year he expanded the pamphlet and reprinted it. Whether spurred by Green or
not, many more migrants from other parts of the United States arrived in Colorado County in
early 1877. These new settlers, like those from Europe, were welcomed warmly, at least
partly for political reasons. As the local newspaper acidly noted on October 19, 1871, "the
arrival of large numbers of honest immigrants who, to a man, want a white man's govern-
ment" was seen by the conservatives as "a stunning argument to the negro" who "want the
African floodgates opened, and cannibals imported to counteract the influence of these
white people upon the political status of the State." By 1878, however, even some of the
white immigrants had begun to grate on the locals; the Colorado Citizen complained that,
because of the success of the immigration agents, the county had become overrun "with
impecunious tramps, who cannot get work, and finally resort to crime."48
Old Homestead Publishing, 1983) vol. 1, pp. 37-38). Despite the discrepancies, we must presume that
these were the voyages of the Erna and the Bremen which delivered the last 338 of Malsch's passen-
gers. This leaves the 250 or so immigrants who arrived in Columbus on October 13 unaccounted for.
Obviously, these immigrants could not have arrived on the Texas or the Iris, as neither vessel arrived
in Galveston before October 13. We can only speculate that the missing 250 immigrants first sailed into
another American port (perhaps New Orleans), or that other ships arrived in Galveston in 1871.
48 Colorado County District Court Records, Minute Book E, p. 213; Colorado Citizen,
October 19, 1871, August 6, 1874, September 10, 1874, October 28, 1875, November 4, 1875, December
23, 1875, January 13, 1876, April 13, 1876, May 18, 1876, July 20, 1876, August 17, 1876, January 11,
1877, April 12, 1877, February 8, 1877, April 19, 1877, January 17, 1878, January 24, 1878; Rowan Green,
Colorado County, Texas: Its Health, Climate, Soil, Advantages andResources (Columbus: Colorado
Citizen, 1877). Some people, notably Washington County's state senator, Matthew Gaines, a black
man, had strongly suggested that Texas attempt to encourage immigration from Africa. He was moti-
vated at least in part by his belief that a marked increase in the number of whites in the state relative
to the number ofblacks would erode black political power. Colorado County's state senator, Robert P.
Tendick, though a Republican, ridiculed the notion of encouraging African immigration in a speech he
made on April 19, 1871, saying in part: "The children of the ancestors of Senator Gaines do not
encumber their minds with money used as a valuable medium of circulation: many of them even never
thought of the luxury of clothing to cover themselves. Now, then, will the Senator inform me who
would pay the passage of his countrymen," and "If the Senator from Washington is afraid, as he said,
that too many white people are coming into the State, and they would sooner or later tell him to pick
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Nesbitt Memorial Library. Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 10, Number 1, January, 2000, periodical, January 2000; Columbus, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth151408/m1/36/?q=nesbitt%20memorial%20library%20journal: accessed October 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Nesbitt Memorial Library.