True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young. Page: 146
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146 TRUE STORIES OF OLD
as the negro porter expressed it, "they shoe was enjoyin' theirselves."
Now Captain Bickley would last on a modern newspaper about
half a minute, but in those days he was Just looked upon as
quite the thing, just so long as he could keep sober enough to
JIMMY DAW has been dead and buried for forty years, but,
if I were a Spiritualist, I would swear that he has been
around me for the last three nights. I have not thought
of him for about forty years and yet he was not a man to be
soon or easily forgotten. Two or three nights ago I woke up
thinking of Jimmy and he has been with me ever since. Perhaps
he has gotten hold of a Chronicle and has seen where I have
been writing about some of the old boys and wants to come in
for his share. Anyway, I am going to pretend that I believe
that and gratify him. However, he is entitled to a place in The
Chronicle on his merits, as Captain William Christian, Mr. A.
B. Nibbs, Mr. I. C. Lord, Henry Thompson, Colonel Phil Fall or
any of the real old-timers will bear witness.
When Mr. William R. Baker was county clerk, or something
of that sort, in the very early 50's, Jimmy was his chief clerk
and right-hand bower. He was devoted to Mr. Baker and thought
there was no man on earth like him. He was a man of some
education, good manners, and, while he knew nothing of "sonatas,"
"movements," "positions" and all those kind of things
violinists love to talk about, he was quite an accomplished
fiddler and made delightful music. I remember him first on
account of his fiddle and next, in after years, by the strange
philosophy he developed and the strange theories he fathered.
He was always a bit of a character and in his old age he developed
into a most pronounced and highly entertaining one.
He lived out near the old graveyard, not far from hangman's
grove, and I used to go out there to hear him talk. Mr. Baker
took care of him in his old age, sQ he was quite comfortable
and had nothing else to do but think and talk. One of his pet
theories was that the world had been ruined by education.
"It makes me mad to hear the preachers talking about hell,"
he said one day. "There ain't no hell. It's all education; that's
what it is. You take the lowest form of life, the jellyfish or
the earthworms. They don't know anything; they float or squirm
around, picking up what they want to eat as they go. They
don't know anything, they don't have to work or do anything
but eat, sleep and enjoy themselves. That's heaven. Now, come
a little higher-to the birds and small animals. They know
something and they have to pay for it, too, for they have to
rustle for a living. That's sorter between heaven and purgatory.
Next, we come to horses, cows and animals that have got
more sense, and they have to work and toil for everything they
Here’s what’s next.
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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/m1/146/: accessed June 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .