True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young. Page: 106
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106 TRUE STORIES OF OLD
living in or near Houston and San Jacinto Day, April 21, was
always celebrated in great style. The "Twin Sisters" were taken
down to the corner of Commerce Street and a salute was fired,
after which the town was literally turned over to the heroes of
San Jacinto. I remember well one of the most conspicuous of
them. He was Tierwester, an old Frenchman. At the battle of
San Jacinto he had a powder horn slung to his neck. This powder
horn was a cow's horn scraped very thin and had a wooden
plug at the large end and a small plug at the little end of the
hopn. During the battle a Mexican bullet struck this horn and
entered through one side, but did not have enough force to go out
of the other. Tierwester never removed the ball, but on San
Jacinto Day he came to the reunion wearing this horn round his
neck and the drunker he got the louder he told the story and
rattled the bullet. He was a great character and lived and died
in what was then known as Frosttown, not far from the Hutchins
residence, now the center of Houston almost.
But these San Jacinto celebrations were not always fun alone.
Tragedy cropped up occasionally. I remember one which occurred
when I was a little boy. The "Twin Sisters" had been
taken out, as usual, for the salute. A man named Tom Ewing
took charge of the big end of the gun and volunteered to hold his
thumb on the vent hole, a necessary Precaution to keep the gun
from exploding after it became heated. Mr. Warren Stansbury
performed the duty of loading the piece. The salute was about
half over and Stansbury was ramming home a charge when the
gun became so hot that Ewing, thoughtlessly, took his thumb
from the vent. Instantly the piece was discharged and Stansbury's
arm was so' badly mutilated by the rammer that amputation
was necessary. He recovered and lived several years after.
Of course all has been done that can be done to locate the
"Twin Sisters," but there is one question that can be and should
be settled: Which Twin Sisters were used at San Jacinto?
Those presented by the ladies of Cincinnati or those by General
Chambers As a native Texan, I had the greatest respect and
reverence for the brass pieces of market square and I would like
to know if I have been worshipping false gods all these years.
I know nothing of the Chambers iron cannon, but if they should
be proven to be the real San Jacinto cannon I am willing to
transfer my homage and allegiance to them.
* HOW HE LOST HIS EGGS.
OMEONE asked ne the other day how I managed to think
of so many things of the past to write about. The truth
is that I have more things, unwittingly, suggested to me
every day than I could write up in a week. I rarely meet one of
my old-time friends that some subject is not discussed which,
directly or indirectly, suggests something of the past Then, too,
a line in the daily papers will cause me to think of some occur.
rence, which has no apparent relation or reference to the sub.
*~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~~~~~Oe~c otesb
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Young, Samuel Oliver. True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young., book, 1913; Galveston, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth24646/m1/106/: accessed June 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .