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: 474
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HISTORY OF TEXAS.
were among the early settlers of that district,
and in ante-bellum days were people of means.
But the ravages of the Civi, war reduced
their estates, and this, added to the loss of her
husband, left the mother of the subject of
this sketch in straitened circumstances.
Her courage and industry were often put to
the test in providing for her four small children.
Of necessity the education which they
received was restricted to such as they could
get in the local public schools, and even of
this the share that fell to John II. was obtained
in fragments and at irregular intervals,
his time being taken up mostly with his
duties on the farm. Tiring of this state of
things and being desirous of doing something
for himself, he went to a friend one day and
borrowed $25, added to it $13 of his own
money, being all he had, and put the whole
of it into a railroad ticket, boarded the cars
and came to Texas. His ticket reached to
Hearne, in Robertson county. From that
point he continued his way west afoot, crossing
the Brazos and striking into Milain
tie began at once to inquire for work along
the route and found his first job at Maysville,
in this county, where he took employment at
$12.50 a month ou a farm. This was in December,
1879. For four years he made that
his home and was variously engaged, mostly
at farmn labor, when, in 1883, he came to
Caumeron and clerked for a year and a half in
a store for B. Vogel, and then about the same
length of time for R. F. Pool. January 1,
1887, he went into the Sheriff's office as
deputy under A. J. Lewis, and held this position
until 1890, when, in a ' free-for-all
race," where there were six candidates in the
field, he was elected Sheriff by a Ate of
2,257 out of a total vote of 4,140. He gave
such satisfaction that lie was made the Demo
cratic nominee for the office in August, 1892,
by acclamation, and in November following
wis elected, by a vote of 2,907 out of a total
vote of 4,837 cast. It is the generally expressed
opinion among the people of Milam
county that John Bickett is one of the best
Sheriffs they ever had. His courage, industry
and executive skill make him a model officer
in a position like that of Sheriff, which requires
the constant exercise of these qualities.
Mr. Bickett married in Brenham, this
State, September 10, 1891, Miss Minnie
Muse, daughter of Dr. J. S. Muse and sister.
of Judge E. B. Muse, present County Judge
of Milamn county.
HESTER, deceased, was born near
Hamburg, Germany, September 17,
1835, a son of John and Isabella Hester,
natives also of that country. He
learned the druggist's trade in his native
plate, and in 1855 emigrated to Texas, locating
in Lexington, Lee county. He was employed
as clerk for Titus Mundine several
ycara,^nd at the opening of the late war he
enlisted as a private in Gray's company of
cavalry, in which he served two years. After
returning from the war Mr. Hester continued
the sheep industry, in which he had engaged
just prior to that struggle. Two years afterward
he sold his sheep and embarked in the
drug business, to which he later added a
general mercantile stock, and his business
prospered and enlarged until he became- the
leading merchant in his section. Mr. Hester
was a man of strong character, shrewd in
business and of tireless energy. He was a
true Christian, and of a generous nature,
yielding to the demands of the poor and of
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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/m1/509/: accessed July 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .