Forty years at El Paso, 1858-1898; recollections of war, politics, adventure, events, narratives, sketches, etc., by W. W. Mills. Page: 11 of 163
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FORTY YEARS AT EL PASO.
Anson nail the information that three certain citizens
were liars, etc., and here, just ten years later, I gave the
same information regarding B. F. Williams. Foolish?
The flouring mill of Simeon Hart, about a mile above
the village, was the chief individual industrial enterprise
in the valley, and ground the entire wheat crop from
both sides of the river, and supplied flour to all the people
and the military posts.
The proprietor, a man of wealth and influence, staked
all and lost all in the Confederate cause.
The dam which supplied water to this mill had been
constructed two hundred years ago by the people of the
Mexican side of the river, who kept it in repair for all
these years without asking any assistance from the people
of the Texas side, although they generously divided the
water with us.
The patience and industry displayed by this people
in repairing and rebuilding this dam, when washed away
by annual floods, can only be compared to that of
The Texas bank of the Rio Grande was then (1858)
only a short distance south of where the Santa Fe depot
now stands, but just how far south it is impossible for me
or any one else, I believe, to tell, though I have been
often asked to testify as to where the river bed was then,
and in later years. It found its present bed more or less
gradually by erosion and revulsion during these years,
and left very few landmarks.
The bed of the river was narrower then than now, and
many cottonwood trees grew upon each bank.
At the end of El Paso street was the ferry, where pedestrians
crossed in small canoes, and vehicles and wagon
trains in larger boats.
Here’s what’s next.
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Mills, William W. Forty years at El Paso, 1858-1898; recollections of war, politics, adventure, events, narratives, sketches, etc., by W. W. Mills., book, 1901; Chicago. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth6112/m1/11/?q=Forty%20Years%20at%20El%20Paso,%201858-1898:%20Recollections%20of%20War,%20Politics: accessed July 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .