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: 439
O F T
vation 110 acres. Hle produced a large cotton
crop in 1892, and, holding a portion,
secured the benefit of the high prices prevailing
in the fall of that year.
Mr. Peterson was united in marriage, in
June, 1892, to Miss Ellen Blomquist, a
daughter of C. M. Blomquist. Both are
worthy members of the Lutheran Church,
and enjoy the regard of a wide circle of
^\\ S. PORTER.-It is rarely the case
that one expects to find much romance
in the lives of successful business men,
especially as it is known that the elements
that enter into and lead then step by
step through the circuitous paths of toil and
oftentimes deprivation, toward the attainment
of financial success, are plain, hard,
common-sense, energy, perseverance and determination.
Yet to go over the life of the
subject of this sketch one can not fail to detect
the romance underlying it and to feel
that he is perusing a work of fiction rather
than the career of a practical man of blusiness.
Raymond S. Porter was born in Hall
county, Georgia, June 22, 1836. His parents
were Benjamin F. Porter and Delaney
Scott Bell, both of whom were also natives
of Georgia, the father being a planter and
merchant of some means. Raymond S. was
reared in his native county, where lie attended
the local schools up to his sixteenth year. At
that age he ran away from home and then
began that wild life of adventure alluded to
above. The outlines of this portion of his
career can not be better given than in the
language in which he narrated it to the
writer. Questioned as to his early life he
"My boyhood until I was sixteen wvas passed
pleasantly enough on my father's farm, and(l
there was no reason for tlhe rash step I took
when I ran away except a desire to see the
world. It was in the spring of 1852 that I
decided to take a trip to the then muchtalked-of
gold fields of California. Hastily
gathering up a handful of clothing, I stole
out one day and sallied forth with heart brave
enough, as I thought, to conquer a world. I
acknowledge now that my ignorance of what
lay before me was one af the chief sources of
my courage. I had heard only of the romantic
side of life in the 4" Far West;" I was
now to learn some of its hardships and dis
"On leaving home I went direct to Atlanta,
where I secured transportation to New Orleans,
at which place I took passage on a
steamer bound for San Francisco, California.
Our route lay by way of Havana, Aspinnwall,
and Panama and thence round by the west
coast of Mexico, where we touched at various
ports, reaching San Francisco after a two
months' voyage, travel then by steamer being
much slower than now and considerable
time bei ng consumed on our trip by the stops
we name. Once in the land of gold I set off
immediately for the ' diggings,' going out by
way of Sacramento and Marysville toward
the Yuba river country and thence to Dry
creek, where I was soon fully initiated into
the business. I mined in that locality for
three years, mostly on Yuba river. It was a
wild, desultory, exciting sort of a life, those
three years that I spent on the Yuba river. I
do not mean that it was immoral or unlawful;
it was just such a life as the average
miner led in those days,-inevitable because
of the condition of things around. The literature
of the country had been flooded during
the last quarter of a century with de
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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/m1/471/ocr/: accessed October 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .