History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families Page: 242
242 IIIS~tORY OF TEXAS.
hiind feet, walking toward me, swaying her.
body right and left. Her hair was all standing
on end and her ears laid back, presenting
a frightful appearance. Life was pendingon
the contest. Either Z. N. Morrill or that
lear bad to die. Tlhe only chance was to
make a good shot. The bear was now not
more than forty feet froinm me, and steadily
advancing. Remenmbering that I had but
the one slim chance for my life, depending
on the one gun-cap and the faithfulness of
my aim, I found I had the 'buck ague.' 1
had faced cannon in the battle-field, but never
did I feel as when facing that bear. I grasped
the gun, but the tighter I grasped the worse
I treinbled. The bear was now less than
twenty feet away, walking straight on ler
hind legs. By moving the gun up and down
I finally succeeded in getting in range of her
body, but not until the anin:al was within ten
feet of te did I get an aim upon which I was
willing to risk a shot! The bear was in the
act of springing when I fired. At the crack
of the gun, the hear sprang convulsively to
one side and fell. I then re-loaded and killed
The year 1867 was probably the worst season
for yellow fever that Texas ever saw.
About thirty interior towns and villages suffered
an appalling mortality. It first made
its appearance at Indianola, early in July,which
was probably the earliest for that
year in the United States. Within the first
few weeks it proceeded in its devastating
march, in turn, to Galveston, Lavaca, Victoria,
Goliad, Hempstead, Cypress, Navasota,
Millican, Brenham, Chapel Hill, La Grange,
Bastrop, Alleyton, Long Point, Co/rtney,
Anderson, Huntsville, Liberty, Lynchburg
and many smaller places. It was said to have
been successfully excluded from Richmond
and Columbus by a rigid quarantine, and also
from Brownsville and Anderson till a very
late period, though it finally broke out in
both of the latter places.
The mortality was very great. In Galveston,
for example, out of a total of 1,332
deaths reported during the epidemic, 1,134
were from yellow fever. In Harrisburg and
some other towns, considerably more than
half the cases were fatal; in other places,
half or a little less. Some cases of distress
and lack of care were truly heart-rending.
DAWSON AND SIMS.
Frederick Dawson, of Baltimore, Maryland,
who helped Texas with money in her early
struggles, was a jovial gentleman with huge
proportions, and used to come to Austin during
the sessions of the legislature after
annexation, to press his claims for settlement
with the State of Texas. He was a jolly
companion, a good liver, very fond of brown
stout, and had a laugh which waked the
echoes around to a marvelous distance.
In the amplitude of his proportions and
the magnitude of his laugh Dawson was
rivaled by Bart Sims, a resident of the Colorado
valley. They had never met before the
occasion under consideration; consequently
their points of resemblance were unknown to
each other. Upon this day, as they chanced
to be in town at the same time, the young
men of the place conceived the sportive notion
of having Dawson and Sims laugh for. a
wager. Drinks for the whole population
were staked upon the result, judges were
chosen and the cachinnation commenced.
Never before or since has there been such
a merry scene in Texas. For half an hour
IMISTSORY OP TEXAS..
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Lewis Publishing Company, publisher. History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families, book, 1893; Chicago. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth29785/m1/247/ocr/: accessed October 22, 2016), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .