Heritage, Volume 6, Number 3, Fall 1988 Page: 24
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12180 Burnet Road, Suite A
Austin, Texas 78758
The Texas Historical Foundation joins
the state government in promoting and
publicizing the cultural, intellectual and
economic payoffs of tourism within Texas.
The atlas The Roads of Texas supports and
enhances the goal of making all of Texas
attractive and available to travelers.
Early Days on the Bayou
Early Days on the Bayou, 1838-1890; The
Life and Letters of Horace Dickinson Taylor.
By Ellen Robbins Red, Texian Press;
Early Days on the Bayou is a biography of
the author's great grandfather, Horace D.
Taylor, who came to Texas in 1838 at the
age of seventeen. After numerous adventures
in the new Republic of Texas, he
settled in Houston in 1848, and the many
letters he wrote and received give a firsthand
account of the daily life of a young
cotton merchant in those pioneer days.
The heart of the book, and its most
valuable and interesting section, is the
collection of letters written by Horace to
his sister Ellen in Charleston during the
period 1818-1852. The letters give a fascinating
look at daily life in early Houston
and at Houstonians of the time. Horace
spoke of yellow-fever epidemics and described
Texas northers so cold that parishioners
of the Presbyterian church were
forced to wear blankets over their clothes
while attending services. He also describes
his use of an umbrella during the entire
eighty-mile horseback ride from Houston
to Independence for protection from the
"scorching rays of the sun." Author Red
suggests that although one usually does not
picture the hearty pioneers of Texas riding
along with umbrellas raised overhead,
even the Indians appreciated the American
umbrella, and it was a popular item at
their trading posts. Present-day Houstonians
will be fascinated by the disclosure
that "moschetos abound here in great profusion,
but roaches are scarce...too hot for
In January 1859, Horace formed a partnership
with Thomas Bagby to establish a
cotton-commission business. Both the
business and the city of Houston survived
the Civil War without too much inconvenience,
and both began to prosper at the
end of the hostilities.
In 1866, Horace was elected mayor.
Under his administration, the streets of the
city were improved and given names, and
the Houston Direct Navigation Company
was formed to dredge Buffalo Bayou, making
it navigable from Houston fifty miles to
Red gives much credit to Horace and
men like him for the growth and progress of
the city on the bayou. She says, "That
Houston is now a great city and a world port
is due to the tireless efforts of its citizens,
from that day to this." Her book supports
Early Days on the Bayou is a readable,
factual story about an honest and sincere
man, and appeals to readers of all ages.
Whether watching whales from the deck of
a schooner, riding his horse across the
prairies, or shipping cotton from his warehouse
on the bayou, Horace Taylor is a
likeable character whose life took place in
a memorable time.
Reviews by Carolyn Fasel
St. Edward's Portraits
St. Edward's Portraits. By Dr. Richard B.
Hughes, Acorn Press, 1988; 100 pages.
The major premise of St. Edward's Portraits,
Dr. Hughes tells us, is to "refute the
idea that only in Hollywood, New York
and Washington D.C. where public relations
people 'puff' and package celebrities,
are Americans worthy of our concern."
The book is not a cold, sad monument, but
rather a collection of portraits that sings
with happy memories and salutes the
extraordinary, ordinary people. You may
even see friends in these portraits.
The language is informal, first person,
anecdotal and unapologetically personal.
It is written in the idiom of the feature
story, the informal essay and the verbal
portrait. The first section is devoted to
people that Dr. Hughes has known in his
thirty years of teaching. The stereotypical
is not seen here.
Richard Fry was a gifted cartoonist of
the class of 1952. Fry admired Bill Mauldin,
whose earthy GIs, Willie and Joe, usually
got the best of authority and were not
trapped by bureaucracy. Similarly, Fry's
classmates managed to survive the blackrobed
Holy Cross priests and brothers who
represented authority on campus. Two
...an exciting book by
Dr. Richard B. Hughes
...this volume sparkles with
photographs and line art.
Richard Hughes shares
his insight into the "soul"
of a university.
Dedicated to Brother Hilarion
Brezik. Published by his friends!
"The perfect gift for anyone who
has enjoyed a small campus and
for those who feel indebted to
great teachers." - Maisie Paulissen
Information on availability:
The Acorn Press
5451 Burnet Road
Austin, Texas 78756
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Texas Historical Foundation. Heritage, Volume 6, Number 3, Fall 1988, periodical, 1988; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth45436/m1/24/: accessed June 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas Historical Foundation.