Indian wars and pioneers of Texas / by John Henry Brown. Page: 214 of 894
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INDIAN WARS AND PIONEERS OF TEXAS.
most part was cheered by the successful results
of his enterprise and foresight. Whenever he
took a stand on any great public question he
did so after mature deliberation and adhered to
his views with consistency and firmness, apparently
as little disturbed by adverse prospects as elated
with success. His temperament and mental organism
were not such as characterize the partisan or
popular politician. He was not capable of viewing
a question wholly from one standpoint, but naturally
considered it in all its bearings, and if he had
prejudices and prepossessions that warped his
judgment and influenced his conclusions, they never
appeared in anything that he said or wrote. He
never indulged in the crimination and recrimination
so common to the press in times of political
excitement, nor showed prejudice against a person
or cause on personal grounds. Neither did he
deal in vague generalities or exhibitions of feeling
or sentiment. Palpable facts and the most direct
and logical conclusions from them constituted the
means which he employed to influence public
opinion. Raised in the political school of Calhoun
and deeply imbued with its principles, he held with
constancy to the fixed political opinions of his
younger years, firm in the belief that they were
well founded and must be ultimately vindicated
or the government lose the vital elements of liberty.
In his manner toward and intercourse with
others Mr. Richardson was singularly modest and
unobtrusive. With an abiding faith in the future
of Galveston and Texas, he invested the proceeds
of his business in property that grew in value with
the development of the country and spent his
money with a liberal hand in the erection of elegant
and costly buildings. The first four-story brick
building put up in Galveston was erected by him
before the war for the office of the News. The
opera house and stores connected with it, extending
to and adjoining the office of the NYews, followed,
involving investments which but few men
would have ventured to make at that time, but
which were all made with the cool calculation of
the man of business, as well as the laudable pride
of a man who had identified himself with the building
up of the city and was willing to stand or fall
with it. He also made other valuable improvements
in other parts of Galveston and contributed
to almost every enterprise for the improvement of
the city and its connection with the commerce of
In former years he sometimes served as alderman
and was once elected and served as mayor of Galveston,
althiough he had not announced himself as
a candidate. He declined to run for re-election.
He frequently expressed repugnance to office holding.
He had no ambition to occupy a conspicuous
position in the public eye, either living or dead, and
placed little value upon ostentatious display, preferring
the solid and useful to that which is ornate
and showy. With the increase of years and the
pressure of business he gradually relaxed his editorial
labors, having for some years prior to his
death retired from any active management of the
NezTs. Though he found time afterwards to contribute
to its columns, he had ceased to do so
regularly for a long time and held no position in
the division of the labors of the establishment.
He took an active interest in the benevolent order
of Odd Fellows, of which he was a life-long member
and for which he exercised his pen even after he
had ceased to labor on the columns of the News.
At the session of the Grand Lodge of the United
States, held in April, 1874, it was resolved that the
history of the order should be written and an appeal
was made to members throughout the country for
aid in the work. In accordance with a resolution
then adopted by the Grand Lodge, M1r. Richardson
received the following appointment through the
Grand Master of Texas:"'
OFFICE OF R. W. GRAND MASTER,
"' R. W. GRAND LODGE I. 0. O. F. OF THE
" STATE OF TEXAS.
W'ACO, TEXAS, April 24th, 1874.
"By virtue of the authority in me vested, and in
compliance with the spirit and object of the enclosed
copy of circular letter, I hereby nominate,
constitute and appoint you Historiographer of our
beloved order in the State of Texas. While you
deservedly have the reputation of being the Nestor
of journalism in this great and rapidly growing
State, you are also esteemed properly by the
brothers of this jurisdiction as the father of Odd
Fellowship in Texas. No one in my knowledge is
more imbued with the cardinal virtues, and has
more interest in and zeal for our Order in Texas
than yourself, and no one is better prepared to
give accurately, thoroughly and attractively the
rise, progress and rapid development of Odd
Fellowship in Texas than yourself. Hoping that
you will accept the appointment, and at once open
correspondence with Brother Ridgeley, I am, fraternally
" M. D. HERRING,
" Grand Master."
This labor of love Mr. Richardson, then seventytwo
years of age, at once set out to accomplish,
and the result in a short time was a handsome book
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Brown, John Henry. Indian wars and pioneers of Texas / by John Henry Brown., book, ; Austin, Tex.. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth6725/m1/214/: accessed April 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .