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: 256
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HISTORY OF TEXAS.
He was reared in his native county, passing
has boyhood and youth on his father's farm.
He left there in 1836, being then in his
twenty-first year, and went to Alabama,
where he took up his residence with his
maternal uncle, William B. Wilson. He
made his home in the family of this uncle
for some years, in fact until his removal to
Texas and his marriage here at a later date.
Mr. Oxsheer first set foot on Texas soil in
January, 1837, coning on a prospecting tour
that year and remaining about six weeks,
when he returned to Alabama. He came to
make this his home in December, 1839, being
one of a party composed mostly of relatives
of his uncle, William B. Wilson, and his servants.
This party settled near old Wheelock
in Robertson county, which was then the
first halting place of most of those intending
to make central Texas their home. From
there he came, in the spring of 1842, to what
is now Milam county. His recollection of
the country at that date and of early events
and early settlers as well as his own personal
record, is best given in the narrative in which
he related it to the writer.
'- A- I was induced to come to Texas to
live by the impression made on me during
my visit in 1837, a reference to that impression
is proper at the outset of what I have
to say. Texas then, according to my recollection
of it, was as near an earthly paradise
for a man of simple tastes and fond of nature
as I have ever saw or have since read of.
To the eye it presented the appearance of
a vast stretch of undulating country, threaded
at intervals by clear streams of running water
and divided almost equally between timber
land and prairie. All kinds of game, such
as buffalo, deer, antelope, bear, wild hogs
and turkey were here in abundane while
the climate, barring the occasional' heavy
rainfall in winter, was almost ideally perfect.
To use a little rhetoric, none too strong,
however, for the facts, I would say it was
the hunter's home, the pioneer's paradise and
the poet's dream of breathing beauty. Added
to this was the promised pleasure of association
with a class of people the like of whom
could be found only in such a country,-a
people who were a little rude, perhaps, in
ways, but honest, brave, candid, steady in
purpose and steadfast in friendship,. generous
and hospitable to a degree, as I believe, never
witnessed elsewhere in the world.
" It was in such a country and among such
people that I took up my residence in what
is now Milam county more than fifty years
ago. For the first few months after coining
here I lived with my uncle, William B. Wilson,
who settled on the homestead now
occupied by his son, W. S. G. Wilson, about
four miles southwest of Oameron. We located
in the woods on Little river and the
first few months were occupied in clearing up
some land, erecting buildings, making a crop
and getting things in readiness to move out
that fall the family, which was then at
Wheelock. I had but little time to make
excursions over the country, but the settlers
were so few that we knew one another for
miles and considered ourselves acquainted
on first meeting. I remember there were
several families living near where Cameron
now stands, mostly in the river bottom and
along the breaks from a mile to a mile and a
half east of the present site of the town.
These were Daniel Monroe, Josiah Turnham,
Shapley P. Ross, Giles 0. Sullivan, John
and William Thompson with their widowed
sister, Mrs. Frazier; Mat Jones, a Mr. Wortham
and an eccentric old man without a
family calied 'Dad Anders.' At Nashville
lived W. D. Thompson, John Beal, Daniel
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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/m1/265/?rotate=90: accessed October 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .