Heritage, Volume 6, Number 3, Fall 1988 Page: 20
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DeMorse's ship was eventually released
by the British and sailed to New Orleans,
where he wounded another man in a duel.
Soon after, he made his way to Texas,
arriving in Galveston in early March 1836.
DeMorse joined the Texas Navy, serving
aboard the Independence while the defeated
Santa Anna was held there after the
Battle of SanJacinto. He later served in the
Republic's army before it was disbanded in
1837 by General Sam Houston.
After practicing law and marrying in
the Gulf Coast town of Matagorda, DeMorse
relocated to the new capitol city of
Austin. He was appointed stock commissioner
by President Mirabeau Lamar, and
served as a reporter for the House of Representatives
during the 1841-42 session of
the Texas Congress. He left Austin in 1842
after being persuaded by members of the
Red River County congressional delegation
to move to Clarksville and begin
publishing a newspaper.
DeMorse found a sparsely settled region
with few passable roads, flood-prone creeks
and streams, and intermittent mail delivery.
Despite these hardships, The Northern
Standard prospered, moving to a larger office
in 1846 and attempted to expand by
opening a branch office in Bonham.
During the next 45 years, DeMorse
exerted considerable influence over decisions
that would affect his adopted state.
His strongly worded editorials helped mold
public opinion on questions of statehood
(he favored it), secession (he supported it
and served as a colonel in the Confederate
army) and the Texas Constitution of 1876
(he helped draft the document). The
Northern Standard also contained typical
social, local and political news of the day,
as well as publishing required legal notices.
The Northern Standard continued publication
for one year after DeMorse's death
in 1887. The complete files of the newspaper
are stored at the University of Texas at
Austin library, providing a unique glimpse
of the political, economic and social life of
Texans during the state's earliest years.
Like the newspaper, the DeMorse
House also reflects the lives of Texans
during the RepUblic and early statehood
years. Its rich historical and architectural
value should be preserved for all future
generations of Texans.
[Contributions to the restoration of the DeMorse House
Interior shots of the DeMorse House that show the may be made to the Red River County Historical Society,
current status of the building. P.O. Box 1261, Clarksville, Texas 75426. -Ed.]
Ken Walen is Administrative Aide to Rep.
Barry Telford in Austin.
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Texas Historical Foundation. Heritage, Volume 6, Number 3, Fall 1988, periodical, 1988; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth45436/m1/20/: accessed December 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas Historical Foundation.