Osceola Plantation

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Brazosport Archaeological Society

 

            After the death of his wife Eliza Martha Westall Hill, William Green Hill developed the Osceola Plantation from the James E. B. Austin 3 League tract on the west side of the Brazos above the town of Columbia 1849-1850. This property had been inherited by his wife Eliza M. Hill from the estate of her first husband, J. E.B. Austin, brother of Stephen F. Austin. After the death of her second husband Zeno Phillips in 1835, Eliza married William G. Hill in 1836. Before Eliza’s death in 1847 William and Eliza Hill had been raising their family and her son by James E. B. Austin and her daughter by Zeno Phillips on the east side of the San Bernard River at Waverly Plantation (named by William G. Hill) the property of her deceased second husband.

 

Osceola copy.jpg

 

Map 1879 Texas General Land Office

 

William G. Hill and his six children by Eliza Hill made their home at Osceola developing it into a cotton plantation until his death in 1860. After the Civil War Paul N. Spofford of New York gained control of the plantation and built a large sugar mill in the early 1870’s. Leasing the property to John Wells in the late 1870’s convict labor was potentially available to harvest the cane and corn crops at Osceola. With banking and shipping lines at their disposal Paul N. Spofford and Thomas Tileston were the owners of one of the largest investment and mercantile houses on the east coast, Spofford Tileston & Company of New York. During this same time period they purchased the Waldeck Plantation just south of Osceola. Paul N. Spofford chose to finance his holdings in Osceola on the east coast through the Sewell Estate. In 1880 the estate took over the Osceola Plantation and for the year 1882 John Wells again leased the property. In 1889 Branch T. Masterson bought the property at auction. Harris Masterson, T. L. Smith, John G. Smith, and Branch T. Masterson gained control of the large plantation in the early 1890’s. T. L. Smith started to divide part of the plantation up into small tracts and sell them to a group of Italian immigrants in 1893. The Italians seemed to have little knowledge of cane or cotton production and were gone from the area after only a couple of years. After trying rice farming for a couple of years, a scheme which didn’t prove profitable, in 1905 T. L. Smith bought out his partners. Cattle ranching became the main use of the property and the plantation remained with heirs of the Smith family until 2007.

 

Elizabeth Martha Westall (1807-1847) was the daughter of Thomas and ??? who lived at the Westall Plantation on the west side of the lower Brazos River. James Elijah Brown Austin (1803-1829), the brother of Stephen F. Austin, married Eliza M. Hill March 20, 1828 at San Felipe de Austin. Noah Smithwick added that Brown Austin was anxious to show due respect for the Mexican law and had notified Padre Muldoon but the padre failed to arrive on time. “The bride was ready and so was the feast, but everything had to await the pleasure and convenience of the dilatory priest.” Stephen F. Austin wrote to James F. Perry, “You are doubtless ere this informed by Brothers letters of the important change that has take place in his situation. He was married on the 20 of this month at this place to Miss Eliza Westall—he has made a good choice and I think has secured his domestic happiness—we are trying to arrange matters to set him and John Austin up in the Mercantile business…” A few months later Brown wrote to Stephen, “As to our future plans I have concluded to remain here for the present year, and am now employed putting the Gin in good order for the present crop…I am going to make a crop this season and if the Negroes hire low we should hire them…” The location of Brown’s gin is not exactly clear. He may have been working on his 3 league tract on the west side of the Brazos above Columbia. A portion of this property is often referred to as the ”Gin Tract” or on the out skirts what was to become Brazoria. He was required by Mexican law to show improvement on his property. Stephen F. Austin wrote a short time later to his sister Emily Perry, “You ask me how I like my sister in law—I am very well pleased with her, and think Brown has made a happy choice—they live very happily together and have the prospect of an heir this winter or early in the spring…” February 1829 their only child Stephen Fuller Austin II (1829-1837) was born. James E. B. Austin went into partnership with John Austin in a mercantile business fifteen miles upstream on the west side of the Brazos River. Stephen F. Austin gave the name “Brassoria” to this location.   The partnership was expanded to include a mercantile store in Brazoria. John Austin and Brown made their home in Brazoria. Brown’s home and possibly the gin with out buildings were on the out skirts of town.

The next year Stephen F. Austin wrote to Emily again, “I am now at brothers who has settled at this place probably for life or at least for a few years—he is quite in the woods as yet, tho comfortable, and has a fine Boy as ever I saw—this place is 20 miles by water from the Mouth of the river and about 10 miles from the coast in a direct line. I think it will become a place of business.” Brown wrote to Emily Perry about the coming year just before sailing to New Orleans, “Crops look fine and we have every prospect of an abundant harvest, about 500 Bales of Cotton was made last year for exportation and about sixty or 80 hogsheads of Sugar. This year the Sugar crop will treble and a much larger Cotton crop than ever before.” Having left his family July 3, 1829 on a business trip to New Orleans James E. B. Austin died there August 14, 1829 of yellow fever.

 

Died of yellow fever in New Orleans on Friday the 14th of August, after 63 hours of sickness in the 26th year of age, MR. JAMES E. B. AUSTIN, a native of Potosi, Washington County, Missouri, and for the last eight years, a resident of Texas. He visited New Orleans on business, had been there but a few days, and was to have left the day he was taken sick.

 

H. D. Thompson wrote to Stephen F. Austin from New Orleans after Brown Austin’s death stating Brown had met with Thompson and Captain Harris at about 6 a.m. on an excessively hot day, and had made arrangements to meet Thompson again at his home that evening. Brown had complained of “being a little unwell” but did not appear in any way seriously ill. At 1 p.m., however, he complained of a pain at the pit of his stomach and a slight pain in the head. A physician was called, but by 3 a.m. the following day, Brown Austin was dead. He was interred at 5p.m. the same day “and had a deasent funeral”.

 

The first of the next year, Eliza M. Austin wrote to Emily M. Perry, “…I scarcely know what to say. You must long before this heard of the death of your dear Brother. You my dear Sister can well imagine what my feelings are; looseing all that was Dear to me in this world, my Husband, my friend, my protector, my all. But my Sister there is no remedy for the decrees of providence, but submission. Brother Stephen was at the same time very sick and not expected to live. We all thought that every moment was his last but God was merciful to us, and spared him to take care of his dear little Stephen…As I think it is not prudent for me to keep house alone in this new country, I intend to have me a room put up joining Capt. Austins. He has always been to me a brother and his wife a sister. We have lived together so long that I cannot think of leaving them…Little Stephen has been very sick with a singular breaking out. I at first thought it was the hives. He is now getting much better and thank you very much for his cap and beeds. He could walk a few steps before he was taken sick. He is now beginning to talk…”

 

Shortly after the death of her first husband Eliza M. Austin was courted by Zeno Phillips. Zeno Phillips was one of Stephen F. Ausitn’s Old Three Hundred colonists. He had received a league of land west of Columbia on the San Bernard River in 1824 and bought a portion of Samuel May William’s league on the opposite side of the river.  The census of March 1826 classified him as a farmer and stock raiser, a single man aged between twenty five and forty, with one servant and twenty-two slaves.  In 1829 he was in partnership with John R. Harris in one of the first contracts for cotton in Texas, when they bought about 100 bales from Jared E. Groce. Though there may have been several years’ difference in their ages, Zeno and Eliza were wed by May 1830 according to some court documents. They were already together when Moses Austin Bryan son of Emily M. Perry visited his aunt in January 1830:

 

 …went to my Aunts about five miles from Mr. Bells they were extremely glad to see me and I am very much pleased with her & Col Phillips. I stayed their 10 days and then I came hear and stayed with Mr. Williams 7 or 8 days…I dident have pleasure of seeing my Uncle nor my little cousin my uncle started 3 weeks before we got hear and my cousin was down at Mr Westales my Aunt wanted me to wait & she would go down and fetch him up but I was very anxious to get up hear that I could not wait…

 

While Moses A. Bryan expressed he was “very much pleased” with Eliza and Zeno Phillips being together this did not sit well with the rest of the family; perhaps the mourning period was a bit short. Before the end of the year Eliza Phillips was in communication with Stephen F. Austin who was the executor of James E. B. Austin’s estate and another side of Eliza’s personality started to emerge:

 

                …writing now and I am anxious to know how the business is or will be settled. You told me last spring you would send me down a pertition to sign—for one league of land—on Galviston. I want to know if the pertition was answered—or whether you are authorized to grant it. I also wish to know what right John (Austin) had to Lease out my hous and 10-acres for five years. that I always considered my property. and it is hard to give it up. I loaned John last spring My watch on a business day. he has not returned it. that I wish to reserve myself for Stephen   his father bought it for him and gave it to me to keep it. the house John knows the circumstance very well…

 

Stephen F. Austin was hearing the other side of the story from his close personal friend John Austin at nearly the same time:

 

…I do not Comprehend the whole affair   if I have taken a liberty with the place to rent it etc. I thot. it yours and done what I believed to be of your interest, I never  have received one cent of the rent Eliza has received it all, I have paid for some repairs making a chimney, etc, If she has complained of me I wish to know it, I never had any other feeling for her than I ought to have had for a sister. My conduct towards her will prove it   in me she found a friend and protector if she complains of a liberty that I have taken with anything she conceived her property I am astonished for She has taken as many liberties with my things as my wife and has always been welcome…

 

The property under contention was later appraised “House and out buildings at the Prairie-$225.00” and “The gin house and cotton gin, as it stands-$140.00”. The only other description was given by John Austin, “The buildings are good the Gin house is sound with the exception of some of the posts on which it stands not much work to replace them…” There were several local residents interested in leasing the property but Jesse Thompson gave them the best offer to rent the Gin Place and may have won the deal.

 Eliza and Zeno Phillips would have a daughter Sarah Olivia Phillips ( ?-1841). In order to receive an education Stephen F. Austin II would stay at Peach Point the plantation home of Emily Perry, Stephen F. Austin’s sister. Eliza paid tuition of $2.00 per month for seven months in 1834 to Thomas J. Pilgrim, who had several students from the area. Stephen F. Austin wrote to James Perry expressing “I wish to spare no pains or care in having little Stephen…well educated,” and “There will be enough out my property to educate him and Guy  in the best manner possible. I wish them to have a finished education and to study law so as to take care of future interests of the family.

James F. Perry wrote to Stephen F. Austin on the progress of his namesake’s schooling and an ominous bit of information on the health of Zeno Phillips:

…Mr. Pilgrim continues with us   the children are very well. Stephen F. Austin is going to school to him and begins to learn fast. Col. Philips is in a very bad health  it is doubtful whether he will recover…

A year later, May 22, 1835 Zeno Phillips died and may have been at the beach for the healthful sea breezes before his death. Emily Perry wrote to her husband James F. Perry from Peach Point:

…I hear that the Scarlet Fever is above Mrs Phelps is very ill with it, not expected to live, it is very ketching, & Dr. Jones informed me, with grown Persons generally Fatal; do not go where it is for God Sake; I shall not see one moments comfort until I see you; Col Phillips is Dead, & the Family have all left the Mouth- I expect you will be Solisted to settle his estate; I hope you will have nothing to do with it…  

 

Emily Perry should not have worried that her husband would have to settle Zeno Phillips’ estate. William Green Hill (1801-1860) would become administrator of the estate and more. In 1825 William G. Green had married Mary Catherine Hall in Madison County, Alabama. They moved to Nashville, Tennessee where their two children were born. Shortly after the birth of their son Thomas Elihu Hill on May 23, 1829, Mary Catherine died. Thomas E. Hill would be raised by his grandparents in Tennessee until he was 16 or 17 when he joined his father in Texas. William G. Hill entered Texas in 1830.

 In 1835 he entered the Texas army as a private in Fannin’s Brazos Guards. He fought at the battle of Concepcion on October 28, the Grass Fight on November 26 and the siege of Bexar on December 5-10. By January 1936 he had moved to the rank of captain of cavalry. February 25, 1836 he took leave of his military duties and entered into a $10,000 bond marriage with Eliza M. Phillips, widow of Zeno Phillips. Another less than customary time of mourning led to more whispers among the community and to another family which would later be cause for concern to the Hill family as Zeno Phillips had several brothers and sisters in Texas. Instead of returning to the army William G. Hill took steps to take care of his new family and property during Santa Anna advance across Texas. William Fairfax Gray encountered him at Ballow’s Ferry on the Sabine River:

 

At the ferry we found Colonel Wm. G. Hill, late of the San Bernard, who had been to take his family and that of E. Waller to the United States. He is now on his return. Waller, whom I saw at Beaumont, has charge of the negroes belonging to himself and Hill. They are trying to take them up Red River. Hill’s address will be Alexandria, La.

 

 From June to October 1836 Hill served in Capt. Washington H. Secrest’s company of Columbia Cavalry.

Zeno Phillips’s estate:

 

                1 Negro Man named  Eoline                                               $1000

                1  Do       Do     Do      Lewis                                                 1000

                1  Do      Do      Do     Abram                                                 1000

                1  Do Woman   Do     Lucy                                     700

               1  Do     Do      Do     Lila                                                           600

                1  Do     Boy     Do     Lew                                      1000

                1  Do     Girl     Do     Adeline                                                  120

                1  Do    Child   Do     Hastings                                                200

                1 League of land on the Brazos & Navasota                     2214

                                                                                Total                       $7714

 

This inventory completed in 1837 does not include the Zeno Phillips League and the portion of the Samuel M. Williams League which he had purchased. This is also a substantial less number of slaves than he had in 1826.                                                                                      

In December 1836 Stephen F. Austin would die of pneumonia at Columbia and in February 1837 Stephen F. Austin II would also. Many in the county had felt that through Eliza’s neglect her son by J. E. B. Austin had died and she was not entitled to his and her first husband’s estate but the courts would decide otherwise. A lawsuit was filed in the Brazoria District Court in 1838 by the Perrys against Eliza M. Hill and later taken all the way to the Republic of Texas Supreme Court where it was settled in 1842. The question at issue came from the construction of a single clause in the olographic will executed by Stephen F. Austin April 19, 1833 before seven witnesses, which is as follows:

 

“That all the residue of my property shall be divided into two equal portions, as nearly as may be, and I give unto my sister Emily F. Austin, wife of James F. Perry, one of said portions, and the other portion I give and bequeath to my nephew Stephen F. Austin, son of my brother James E. B. Austin, and Eliza Martha Westall his wife. In case my said nephew should die without legal issue, then the bequest to him shall pass to, and be inherited by my sister Emily, and her heirs, and no other person whatsoever.”

 

Whereas most of us who read this clause in Stephen F. Austin’s will feel we know that Austin wanted all his property to go to his sister Emily Perry if his nephew did not live and have any children; we are not students of Spanish law. William G. Hill was a lawyer and understood the necessity of getting a good lawyer to present their case. It is not clear who made the final presentation for the plaintiffs but Patrick C. Jack made the plea for the defendants James F. Perry & Wife. His presentation may not have been on the highest level. The elaborate argument prepared by the plaintiffs makes the plea that the additional provision made by Austin which directed the bequest to the sister, if the nephew died without issue, was contrary to the Civil Law and also the Constitution of Texas. This clause is a disposition of the kind known in the civil law as a fideicommissry substitutuion. All fideicommissry substitutuions are a branch of, and included under the general name of fideicommissa. All fideicommissa were strictly prohibited by the express legislation of both Spain and Mexico at the time the will was written. The case was therefore governed by the Civil Law, as the English common law did not replace the Civil Law in Texas until January 20, 1840. The Texas Supreme Court ruled for the plaintiffs. Eliza M. Hill became the instant owner of many thousands of acres in several different Texas counties. The entire Bryan and Perry families would continue to harbor considerable bitterness toward the Hills for many years.

William G. Hill named Zeno Phillips’ homestead on the east bank of the San Bernard Waverly. At this home Eliza and William began their family. Six children would be born to them while they lived there. Andrew McCormick whose father had a neighboring plantation described Eliza Hill:

…She was a widow the time when she married Colonel Hill…but was still young and very attractive. She had been educated in the best schools in “The States,” was handsome and highly intellectual. She received from her first husband a large estate. Colonel Hill and his family lived sumptuously at their Bernard home, which was everywhere known as “Waverly,” which he had given it. He loved company, and organized his home with the view of indulging his taste in that direction and so that he might entertain much company well and easily. After he had been living at Waverly a number of years, he and his family were one day visitors at Madam Bell’s, when she casually made allusion to some of the inconveniences of living on the public road. “Think Madam,” he said “what it must be at the end of the public road.”

 

                In September 1841 Sarah Olivia Phillips died and was buried at Waverly near her father Zeno Phillips and his brother John Clark Phillips. In 1842 the Zeno Phillips estate is listed on the tax rolls as having 7 slaves and 13,084 acres of land. William G. Hill’s own property is listed as 27 slaves and 36,681 acres of land plus many lots in various towns, a great portion of which was Eliza’s inheritance. The surveying and division of property with the Perrys would take several years. William G. Hill wrote many times to James F. Perry during the early 1840’s concerning the surveying that was progressing much too slowly for him and Eliza. All of these were addressed “On Bernard” or “Waverly” indicating the family was still living at Waverly.

William and Eliza’s last child, Charles Norfleet Hill, was born in 1846 and Eliza died in June or July 1847. All her property was placed in her estate with William G. Hill as executor. Immediately after her death James R. Phillips applied as executor but was not allowed as he was part of a law suit against Eliza and William G. Hill. Since Zeno Phillips had died intestate and Sarah Olivia Phillips was a minor the Phillips family was claiming a portion of the slaves and land owned by Zeno Phillips before his marriage. This case was taken to the Texas Supreme Court but was sent back for further litigation. Additional litigation ended with the Phillips family receiving ownership of much of Zeno Phillip’s land including the Waverly Plantation. In 1848 William G. Hill is listed in the tax record as still the administrator of Zeno Phillips’ estate and by 1850 James R. and Sidney Phillips are listed as the property owners.

 

WilliamGHill.jpg

 

William G. Hill Sr. Unknown Date

 

            By 1850 William G. Hill had moved his family to Osceola Plantation. This 6500 acre cotton plantation was on the west bank of the Brazos River above Columbia in the James E. B. Austin 3 League tract which had been inherited by Eliza Hill. The 1850 Census lists the Hill family with only his daughter Ann E. missing probably at school:

 

William G. Hill                       49 M                       North Carolina

Wm. G. Jr.                              4  M ?                     Texas (Should be 11 or 12 years old)

James W.                               9  M                        Texas

A Eenas (A. E. Phelps)        7  M                       Texas

John B.                                   5  M                       Texas

Charles N.                              3  M                        Texas

B. C. Jeffries (Bricklayer)     24 M                       Virginia

 

            The 1850 Agricultural Census lists William G. Hill with 275 acres under cultivation. The tax rolls list 47 slaves, 28 head of horses, and 400 head of cattle in his possession. As administrator of the Eliza M. Hill estate he had applied for at least $1500 per year from the estate to support the children. As money or liens became due Hill would sell or auction off a tract of land to supplement the income of the cotton sold each year.

 

1847 Cotton Crop

                16 Dec                    9   Bales                 $201.97

                30 Dec                    12 Bales                 $290.07

                17 Feb                    6  Bales                 $174.24

                13 March               22 Bales                 $646.21

                11 March               10 Bales                 $300.81

Total                                       59 Bales                 $1613.30

 

1848 Cotton Crop

                15 Dec                    10 Bales                 $222.16

                 2  March               7  Bales                 $151.20

                20 Feb                    8  Bales                 $201.18                  

Total                                       25  Bales                $574.54

 

1849 Cotton Crop

                14 Nov                   5 Bales                  $231.88

                14 Nov                   20 Bales                 $985.15

                14 Nov                   5 Bales                  $223.17

                April                       30 Bales                 $1154.80

                27 April                  21 Bales                 $862.24

                1 July                      30 Bales                 $1282.34

                 1 July                     8  Bales                 $334.12

                1 July                      5 Bales                   $214.81

Total                                       114 Bales               $4248.33

 

1850 Cotton Crop

                                                76 Bales                 $2216.08

1851 Cotton Crop

                                                105 Bales               $3351.66

1852 Cotton Crop

                                                86 Bales                 $3528.45-15 Bales unsold to be sold later

 10 Bales                $399.36

 

1855 Cotton Crop                 131 Bales               $6690.21

1856 Cotton Crop 67 Bales                 $4712.99

 

1857 Cotton Crop 85 Bales                 $4490.03

 

1858 Cotton Crop 141 Bales               $7284.97

 

1859 Cotton Crop 165 Bales               $8319.40 (1858 & part of 1859 crops together not sure break point)

 

1860 Cotton Crop ?                              $2819.24

 

                It appears that possibly after 1848 that cotton was produced on a larger scale which might indicate the move to the Osceola plantation with 1848 being the first year to break ground.                                                                                                              The pattern of life at Osceola seems fairly consistent until October 1, 1857 when William G. Hill’s daughter Ann E. Hill married Dr. Robert H. Boxley.

            The 1860 Census lists the William G. Hill household:

 

William G. Hill, Sr. (Planter)      59 M                North Carolina

Wm. G. Jr.                               21 M                Texas

James W.                                 19 M                Texas

Phelps E.                                  17 M                Texas

John B.                         15 M                Texas

C. Norfleet                               13 M                Texas

Joseph F. Goode                      5/12 M             Alabama

H.M. Rhodes (Overseer)          27 M                Georgia

P. V. Sisson (Teacher)  23 M                New York

J. V. Mason                             52 M                District Columbia

 

            William G. Hill’s son by his first marriage had also moved to Brazoria County and by the ages of his children he had been in Texas for several years:

 

Thomas E. Hill (Lawyer)           31 M                Tennessee

Frances A.                               25 F                 Louisiana

William B.                                3 M                 Texas

Hellen                                       1 F                  Texas

 

            Tax records list 66 slaves, 26 head of horses, and 300 head of cattle in William G. Hill’s possession. The 1860 slave census records 66 slaves and 15 slave dwellings. Evidently at this time William G. Hill may have been in bad health. His immediate business was the partition of his personal property from the estate of his wife Eliza M. Hill. In May of 1860 twenty four slaves (men, women, and children) were valued at $21950. These slaves were then divided into two lots of fairly equal value. The lots were drawn with one lot for the Estate of Eliza M. Hill and the other for William G. Hill. The estate of Eliza M. Hill then had a total of 47 slaves valued at $42,600. Six lots were then made and drawn by each of the children. Eliza M. Hill’s estate had vast land holdings stretching from Brazoria into Austin, Matagorda, Wharton, Fort Bend, Brazos, Bexar, Denton, and Burleson counties. Each child received an estimated value of ~$17,000 in slaves and property from the estate.

            The urgency of getting the inventories and partitions completed became apparent as on June 30, 1860 William G. Hill gave his nuncupative will on his death bed: “To his son Thomas E. Hill his land received from Carson, Negroes Liam, Lily & Ephaim and all the rest of his property to be equally divided between all his dear children…Request that he should be buried with his wife or by her side and one slab over them both with his name on one side and his wifes on the other…  June 30th 1860”

                William G. Hill’s estate totaled $25,562.03 including 24 slaves, 1000 head of cattle, and less than 2000 acres of land. The slaves were again partitioned into seven lots with each child drawing their lot.

            Thomas E. Hill and Dr. Robert H. Boxley, husband of Ann E. Hill, were appointed guardians and administrators of the estate. As there were several minor children Dr. Boxley paid their expenses from the Eliza M. Hill estate and credited every one with a 1/6 share from the sale of the cotton crop. The plantation itself was rented from the estate for $2000/year by the heirs. At the start of the Civil War the plantation produced a good crop of cotton in 1861 which sold for $6356.40. Expenses for 1861 and 1862 list transportation costs to and from Chappell Hill where John B. and C. Norfleet Hill may have been attending school for this time period. According to Abner Strobel some the boys were in the Confederate Army and made distinguished records. Charles Norfleet Hill served in Company F 35th Texas Calvary.

Their 1862 crop of 103 bales of cotton sold for $9375.30 and they made an additional $862.50 on 690 bushels of corn. In 1863-1864 the effects of the war could be seen on the price of cotton and corn. Osceola produced half the crop in bales of cotton as to the previous year but twice the amount of money. Money that was rapidly decreasing in value:

               

Oct 19, 1863           6  Bales                $1825.00 $304.17/Bale          Dr. Perkins

Jan 13, 1864           20                            $5439.42 $271.97                   S. A Styles Confederate States

Jan 21                     12                            $3158.00 $263.17                   R. & D.G. Mills                                    

Mar 1                      12                            $4359.00 $363.25                   R. & D.G. Mills    

April 1                    7                             $5910.00 $844.29                   John Adriance

                Total       57 Bales                 $20591.42

 

Nov 19, 1863         171 Bushels           $514.30                   J. Kennedy

Dec 12                      42                          $106.20                   A. Sessums                          

Dec 15                      27                            $80.00                   J. W. Lawrence

Dec 29                    508                         $698.50                   Capt. Ransom

                Total       748 Bushels           $1399.00

 

                Totals for 1864-1865 are incomplete. A. E. Phelps Hill may have been in bad health and he sold his slaves and his share of the plantation to Dr. Robert H. Boxley and his wife in 1864.  The plantation then ran on 1/5 shares with the rest of the children. Phelps Hill died in 1867. William G. Hill Jr. and his family continued to run the plantation for the next several years. In November 1869 William G. Hill Jr. died and willed his property and interest in the plantation to his two sons William G. Hill III and James W. Hill with no mention of a wife alive at this time. His estate only lists a ¼ portion of 200 acres being the homestead on Osceola Plantation.

February 1870 the Osceola Plantation less the 200 acre homestead was sold at auction to John Adriance, a local merchant from East Columbia, for $10050. Shortly thereafter he purchased the homestead. The estate auctioned the property due to debt owed Adriance in the running of the plantation for several years.  John Adriance sold the Osceola Plantation the same month for $20,000 to Paul N. Spofford of New York. He built a large sugar mill near the Brazos River ~1870-1873. J. H. Colson, a carpenter, worked on the mill October 25, 1872–June 16, 1873 with $440 owed for his services.  Although Paul N. Spofford was part owner with Thomas Tileston in Spofford Tileston & Company of New York, one of the largest investment and mercantile houses on the east coast which had banking and shipping lines at its disposal, he financed Osceola through private mortgages in 1874 and 1875. For operating expenses for 1875 and 1876 he used Spofford Bros. & Co. to which consigned the annual crop. When additional financing was needed he turned to Clinton C. Baker and Louis H. Rowan trustees for the Thomas Sewell estate. His company purchased the Waldeck Plantation, a large sugar and cotton plantation, just to the south of Osceola during this same time period.  Leasing the property to John Wells in the late 1870’s convict labor (38 Convicts) was potentially available for the cultivation and harvest of the cane and corn crops at Osceola. For operating capital he consigned the corn and cotton crop to S. H. Kimball. In 1880 the Sewell estate purchased the Osceola Plantation at a foreclosure sale on Paul N. Spofford.  Their first year “the crop of cane sugar, molasses, corn, and other products.” was consigned to Mark Marx & Harris Kempner of Galveston and they mortgaged “mules, wagons, kettles, coolers” to secure the note for money and supplies to run the plantation. For the year 1882 John Wells again leased the property and he continued to have access to convict labor. The 41 convicts listed may have been used on Waldeck and Osceola Plantation as he leased both properties.

Several less than honest foreclosure deals took place in 1888.  Clinton C. Baker and his wife Frances Isabella Sewell Baker brought suit against Harris Masterson et al and the suit was settled in the Galveston Federal Court in the Bakers’ favor. In 1889 at an auction by the US Marshal Branch T. Masterson bought Osceola for $12000 with all of that amount going to Clinton and Frances Isabella Baker.

Harris Masterson, T. L. Smith, John G. Smith, and Branch T. Masterson gained control of the large plantation in the early 1890’s. John G. Smith had arrived in Brazoria County in the late 1860’s with his brother Travis L. Smith arriving a couple years later in 1871. They ran a mercantile business, J. G. Smith & Bros., in East Columbia and had seven steam boats running on the Brazos River of which the Alice Blair and Hiawatha were top of the line.

 

Osceola1893Map.jpg

 

Plat Map Osceola 1893

 

T. L. Smith started to divide part of the plantation up into 40 acre tracts and sell them to a group of Italian immigrants in 1893.  The Italians seemed to have little knowledge of cane or cotton production and in their first year planted onions. Since there was not a large market for onions, Travis built a galvanized-iron warehouse and stored them. The roof of the warehouse leaked spoiling the onions which to be pushed down a chute into the Brazos River. At the same time that the majority of the Italians were planting onions, a few planted cotton. However, the Italians sold the Paris Green mixture which was given them to dust the cotton to kill pests to neighboring farmers instead of using it on the cotton. They were gone from the area after only a couple of years. T. L. Smith tried rice production for a couple of years but this scheme didn’t prove profitable either. The 1900 hurricane partially destroyed his first crop and the next year the lakes on the northern part of the property which he used for irrigation went dry. In 1905 T. L. Smith bought out his two partners for $5000 each. In 1909 he added the Manor Plantation just north of Osceola to his holdings.  Cattle ranching became the main use of the property and the plantation remained with heirs of the Smith family until 2006 when it was sold to the Spanish Trail & Cattle Co.

            While no excavations or survey work have been done in the area of the residence, slave quarters, or cotton gin area at Osceola, in 1996 limited excavations to identify the structural components were conducted by Joan Few at the sugar mill. The sugar mill since it was built 20-25 years later than most of the mills in Brazoria County had many of the structural components still intact.

OsceolaMillFew.jpg

ChimneyOsceola1996.jpg

 

Photos January 1996 Osceola Boiler Chimney ~45’ Height (Courtesy W. Sue Gross)

 

BoilerOsceolaLength1996.jpgBoilerMakerOsceola1996.jpg

 

Photos  January 1996 Osceola Boiler 28’ Length (Courtesy of W. Sue Gross)

 

 

 

 

 

CrusherFoundationOsceola1996.jpg

 

Photo January1996 Osceola Crusher and Engine Foundations (Courtesy W. Sue Gross)          

 

FireBoxOsceola.jpg

 

Photos January 1996 Osceola Fire Box (Courtesy W. Sue Gross)

 

  

OsceolaEXC1996.jpg OsceolaUNk1996.jpg

 

Photos January 1996 Excavations (Courtesy of W. Sue Gross)

 

 

 

Osceola1Gen1996.jpgOsceola2Gen1996.jpg

 

Photos 1996 Osceola (Courtesy of W. Sue Gross)

 

 

Osceola3Gen1996.jpgKettleOsceola11996.jpg

 

Photos 1996 Osceola (Courtesy of W. Sue Gross)

 

 

 

Osceola1996Excavations.jpg Osceola2Excavations.jpg

Photos Excavations 1996 Osceola (Courtesy of W. Sue Gross)


 

 

Appendix A

Genealogy

 

Elizabeth Martha Westall b. 1807 Potosi County, Missouri? Tennessee? Virginia? (Thomas Westall & ???)

                                          d. June or July 1847 Waverly Plantation, Brazoria County, Texas

                                married 1st     March 20, 1828 San Felipe de Austin, Texas

James Elijah Brown Austin b. October 3, 1803 Potosi County, Missouri

                                                  d. August 17, 1829 New Orleans, Louisiana

                1. Stephen Fuller Austin II b. February 1829 Brazoria County, Texas

                                                                 d. February 1837 Waverly Plantation, Brazoria County, Texas

 

 

                                married 2nd  May 1831 Brazoria County, Texas

Zeno Phillips b. ?

                        d. May 22, 1835 (Quintana ?, Brazoria County, Texas)

                1. Sarah Olivia Phillips b. Waverly Plantation

                                                     d. Sept. 10, 1841 Waverly Plantation, Brazoria County, Texas

 

 

                                married 3rd February 25, 1836 Brazoria County, Texas(his 2nd marriage)

William Green Hill b. 1802 Franklin Co., North Carolina (Jordan Hill and Mary Nancy Green)

                                   d. June 30, 1860 Osceola Plantation, Brazoria County, Texas

                1. William G. Hill Jr. b. 1838 Waverly Plantation, Brazoria County, Texas

                                                      d. November 10, 1869 Osceola Plantation, Brazoria County, Texas

                                married September 27, 1861

                 Elizabeth C. Burney b.

 

                2. Ann E. Hill b. 1839  Waverly Plantation, Brazoria County, Texas

                         married October 1, 1857 Brazoria County

                    Dr. Robert H. Boxley b. 1831 Virginia

                                                         d. January 17, 1896  Hempstead, Texas

 

                3. James W. Hill b. 1840 Waverly Plantation, Brazoria County, Texas

                                             d. ?

                4. Aneas E. Phelps Hill b. 1842 Waverly Plantation, Brazoria County, Texas

                                                          d. 1867

                               

                5. John B. Hill b. August 4, 1845 Waverly Plantation, Brazoria County, Texas

                                     d. October 31, 1899 Houston, Harris County, Texas

                           married February 19, 1867 Fort Bend County, Texas

                 M. Louisa Tomlinson b. 1848

                                                     d. ~1877 Fort Bend County, Texas

 

                6. Charles Norfleet Hill b. June 1846 Waverly Plantation, Brazoria County, Texas

                                                        d. August 10, 1902 Sandy  Point, Brazoria County, Texas

                          married March 5,1873

                 Q. B. Cash b. 1856 Sandy Point, Brazoria County, Texas

                                       d. November 29, 1933 Corpus Christi, Texas

           A. John Harvey Hill (1874-before 1933)  B. E. (Luana) H. Hill (1876-?)

           C. Rose P. Hill (June 18, 1879-?)  D. Charles Norfleet Hill Jr. (1887-1933)

           E. William G. Hill (1890-before 1942)

                               


 

 

Appendix B

Eliza M. Hill Estate Personal Property 1848

 

Negroes           Digga   Man aged about 50 years         Value   $200.00

                        Dick                                26                               700.00

                        Washington                     30                               600.00

                        George                            30                               600.00

                        Joshua                             28                               650.00

                        Lawrence                        28                               650.00

                        Ben                                 26                               700.00

                        Daniel                              26                               700.00

                        French                             32                                600.00

                        Jim                                  30                                700.00

                        Henry a boy                    14                               600.00

                        Willis                                 8                                300.00

                        Abram                               7                                300.00

                        George                              4                                250.00

                        Tom                                  4                                250.00

                        Charles                  3                                200.00

                        Green                                1                                100.00

                        Aley a Woman aged        35 years                       500.00

                        Kitty                                40                                300.00

                        Chancy                55                                100.00

                        Mary                               26                                450.00

                        Rose                               26                                450.00

                        Betsy                               26                                450.00

                        Susan                              18                                500.00

                        Lotty a girl                       14                                400.00

                        Mary Ann                        10                                 350.00

                        Cindarilla                         10                                 350.00

                        Frances                             8                                 250.00

                        Phillis                                 8                                 250.00

                        Celia                                 5                                 225.00

                        Priscilla                  3                                 200.00

                        Clarinda                            2                                 100.00

                        Nancy                               1                                 100.00

 

300 Head of horned cattle valued @ 3 ½ each                1050.00

 

                        Furniture

One Side Board value at                                                                75.00

One Mahogony Armour                                                               175.00

Two Bureaus                                                                                 30.00

One Doz Mahogony chairs                                                            40.00

One Pr. Lard tubs                                                                          10.00

One Mahogony Bed Stead                                                            50.00

Three Cherry Bed Steads                                                           30.00

One Mahogony wash stand                                                           5.00

One Mahogony Rocking chair                                           2.00

One Pr.  Dining Tables                                                      5.00

Three Hair Matresses                                                                 40.00

One Feather Bed                                                                        20.00

Four Pr. Bed blankets                                                                 20.00

Four Pr. Sheets                                                                          15.00

Four Marseilles Bed Spread                                                       16.00

Ten feather pillows                                                                      10.00

Four feather bolsters                                                                   12.00

Two Cut Glass Stands                                                                10.00

Two Cut Glass dishes                                                                   6.00

Four Cut Glass Decanters                                                           12.00

Eight Cut Glass Goblets                                                                8.00

Two fruit dishes or baskets (china)                                                5.00

Two Claret Decanters                                                                   6.00

Two Stock Decanters                                                                   6.00

Eighteen Silver Table Spoons                                                    100.00

Eighteen Silver Tea Spoons                                                         50.00

Eighteen Silver Dining forks                                                       100.00

Eighteen Silver Breakfast forks                                        50.00

Two Solar Lamps                                                                         5.00

One Astral Lamp                                                                        10.00

One Pr. Brass andirons                                                   10.00

Four Brass Fenders                                                                    12.00

Three Prs. Shovel & Tongs                                                           3.00

 

                        Real Estate                  


 

Appendix C

Deed Records

 

 GRANTORS

GRANTEES

Kind of Instrument

Book

Page

Month

Day

Year

Acres

Description

Mexican Government

James E.B. Austin

Deed

SR

 

July

10

1824

 

J.E.B. Austin 3 League Tract

Estate James E. B. Austin

William G. & Eliza M. Hill

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Estate of Eliza M. Hill & Estate of Wm. G. Hill

A. E. Phelps Hill

Deed

K

437/38

March

19

1864

 

1/6 Of his mother’s estate & 1/7 of his father’s estate in slaves, livestock, and lands

A. E. Phelps Hill

R. H. Boxley & William G. Hill Jr

Deed

K

458/59

July

27

1864

6500

$2500 Confederate Treasury Notes 1/6 Interest in Osceola

A. E. Phelps Hill

R. H. Boxley

Deed

K

482

Nov

5

1864

 

4 Slaves $850

Robert H. Boxley

Administrator

Eliza M. Hill

John Adriance

Deed

Q

488/89

Feb

7

1870

 

¼  of 200 acre homestead  residence & improvements $750

Robert H. Boxley

Administrator

John Adriance

Deed

Q

490/91

Feb

5

1870

 

$10050 All of Osceola less homestead at auction

Heirs of Estate & creditors

Paul N. Spofford

Release

Q

491/92

Feb

25

1870

 

Release their claims to Osceola homestead

John Adriance

Paul N. Spofford

 New York

Deed

M

566/68

Feb

17

1870

6500

Osceola Place $20,000

Heirs of Estate 

John Adriance

Release

Q

493/95

Jan

24

1871

6500

Osceola Plantation

J. H. Colson

Paul N. Spofford

Mech. Lien

N

758

Aug

4

1873

 

Carpenter work on Sugar Mill 25 Oct 1872-16 June 1873  $440

Paul N. Spofford

Daniel Dodd

Mortgage

O

324/26

July

13

1874

6500

$20000  note secured by Osceola Lands

Paul N. Spofford

Susan Spofford

Mortgage

O

611/13

Feb

11

1875

~6700

$25,000 note secured by Osceola lands

Paul N. Spofford

Spofford Bros. & Co.

Deed

O

777/78

June

29

1875

 

Consignment of Crops from plantation to pay operating expenses

Paul N. Spofford

Jacob Cromwell

Mortgage

P

366/68

Feb

10

1876

6500

$10,000

Susan Spofford

Jacob Cromwell

Agree

P

368/69

Feb

10

1876

 

Her lien subordinate to his

Paul N. Spofford

Spofford Bros & Co.

Deed

P

557

June

12

1876

 

1876 crop consigned to Spofford Bros

Daniel Dodd

Mercantile Trust Company

Release

Q

496

Oct

4

1876

 

$16333.42 release his note

Mercantile Trust Company

Clinton C. Baker

Louis H Rowan

trustees

Deed

Q

500/01

Oct

18

1876

6500

Osceola Plantation for Frances Isabel Sewell Baker

John Adriance

Paul N. Spofford

Release

Q

497

Oct

11

1877

6500

$20,000 note paid

Jacob Cromwell

Paul N. Spofford

Agreement

Q

497/98

Oct

15

1877

6500

Agreement to allow Spofford to finance additional loan

Susan Spofford

Paul N. Spofford

Agreement

Q

498/99

Oct

15

1877

6500

Same

Paul N. Spofford

C. G. Baker

Louis H. Rowan

Mortgage

Q

500/01

Oct

15

1877

6500

$27,500 for Isabella Baker now carries 3 mortgages

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Paul N. Spofford

William P. Ballinger & D. Noble Rowan

Deed Trust

Q

504/08

Oct

15

1877

6500

$27500

Jacob Cromwell

Clinton C. Baker

Louis H Rowan

trustees

Deed

Q

501/02

Oct

19

1877

 

$3000 3/10 of mortgage P 366/68

G. K. Garrison

Clinton C. Baker

Louis H Rowan

trustees

Deed

Q

674

Jan

18

1878

 

Agrees his mortgage subordinate to Baker & Rowan

Paul N. Spoffard

John Wells

POA

R

172

July

15

1878

 

Power to mortgage crops on Osceola

John Wells

S. H. Kimball

Deed

R

173

Aug

20

1878

 

Consignment of Corn & cotton crop for money to run plantation will receive  commission

Clinton G. Baker

Ballinger & Rowan

Request

S

430

Nov

25

1879

 

Request to foreclose on Paul N. Spofford

Clinton G. Baker

Linn A. Stewart

Request

S

432

Jan

16

1880

 

Request  to foreclose on Paul N. Spofford

Linn A. Stewart

Clinton C. Baker

Louis H Rowan

trustees

Deed

S

433/35

Feb

15

1880

6500

$18000 All land, machinery, livestock foreclosure sale

Clinton C. Baker

Louis H Rowan

trustees

Thomas W. Moore

Deed Trust

S

626

April

22

1880

6500

$40500

Clinton C. Baker

Louis H Rowan

trustees

Thomas W. Moore

Deed

S

630/31

April

22

1880

6500

$40500

Thomas W. Moore

Frances Isabel Sewell Baker

Deed

S

631/32

April

22

1880

6500

Osceola Plantation $40500

Clinton G. & Frances I. Baker

Marks Marx & Kempner

Galveston

Mortgage

T

40/42

Feb

24

1881

 

Consignment 1881 crop of cane sugar, molasses, corn etc. for money & supplies to run plantation used mules, wagons, kettles, coolers to secure note

Marx & Kempner

C. G & Frances I Baker

Release

U

41/42

Jan

27

1882

6500

Release  T40/42

Frances Isabella Baker

John Wells

Lease

U

85

Jan

27

1882

6500

Lease for 1 yr for $5 and payment of taxes for purpose of sugar plantation

Sheriff Auction

Galveston

Harris Masterson

Deed

W

136/38

March

4

1884

6500

Marx & Kempner suit against G.C & Frances I. Baker

M. J. Hickey Shr.

H. W. Chinn

Deed

1

31/32

Mar

6

1888

 

$100 Auction Oseola

H. W. Chinn

H. Masterson

Deed

4

70

June

15

1888

 

$35 Osceola

Clinton C. Baker

Louis H Rowan

trustees

Harris Masterson et al

Decree

4

70/74

Feb

18

1889

6500

Court in favor of Baker set sale date

US Marshal

Auction

Branch T. Masterson

Deed

3

105/07

June

5

1889

6500

$12000  Osceola Plantation suit against H. Masterson et al.

T.L.Smith

Various Italian Families

Deed

21

523,25,46,48,

55,84,

86,87,

89

Aug

4

1893

 

Various 40 acre tracts from Osceola not mill area $1500-$2000 each

 

 

 

24

44

Aug

5

1893

 

Plat

B.T. Masterson , J. G. Smith, and H. Masterson

T. L. Smith

POA

25

166

Oct

16

1893

 

Authorize T. L. Smith to sell tracts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

H. Masterson

T. L. Smith

Deed

67

194/95

April

1

1905

6500

$5000 + any debts against the property 1/3 share

B.T. Masterson

T.L. Smith

mortgage

70

278/79

July

14

1905

 

$5000  his 1/3 share

B. T. Masterson

T. L. Smith

Release

70

279

July

15

1906

 

 

T.L.Smith

Osceola Irrigation Co.

Deed

71

336

Aug

1

1906

 

Osceola Irrigation Co. $49800

E. P. Keenan

T. L. Smith

Deed

85

330

Mar

27

1909

 

Manor Plantation

TL Smith Family

Osceola Surface Partners

Deed

 

 

July

10

2006

 

2006040535

Osceola Surface Partners

Spanish Trail & Cattle Co

Deed

 

 

July

24

2006

 

2006043465

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Primary Sources

 

UNPUBLISHED PAPERS

Brazoria County Historical Museum Library, Angleton, Texas

            James F. Perry and Stephen F. Perry Papers

Osceola Plantation File

Travis L. Smith Family File 20

McCormick, Andrew Phelps, “Scotch-Irish in Ireland and in America” Unpublished book distributed to relatives and friends of Andrew Phelps McCormick, 1897

Streeter Collection on Microfilm

 

Texas State Archives, Austin, Texas

Biennial Reports of the Directors and Superintendent of the Texas State Penitentiary at Huntsville, Texas with The Report of the Prison Physician, Commencing December 1, A.D. 1878, and terminating October 31, A.D. 1880, News Book and Job Office, Galveston, Texas, 1881

 

Biennial Reports of the Penitentiary Board and Superintendent of the Texas State Penitentiary at Huntsville, Texas, with Reports of Physician and Chaplain, November 1, 1880 to October 31, 1882, E. W. Swindells, State Printer, Austin, Texas, 1882

 

NEWSPAPERS AND PERIODICALS

Texas Gazette

 

GOVERNMENT DOCUMENTS

Deed and Probate Records Brazoria County, County Clerk’s Office, Angleton, Texas

 

Brazoria County Tax Records on microfilm Brazoria County Historical Museum, Angleton, Texas

 

Federal Population Schedule, Seventh Census of the United States.

1850        The State of Texas, Brazoria County

“Schedule 2—Slave Inhabitants in the County of Brazoria, Texas”

 

 

 

Federal Population Schedule, Eighth Census of the United States.

1860      The State of Texas, Brazoria County

“Schedule 2—Slave Inhabitants in the County of Brazoria, Texas”

 

Federal Population Schedule, Ninth Census of the United States.

1870               

 

Secondary Sources

 

BOOKS, ESSAYS, THESES, AND DISSERTATIONS

Barker, Eugene C. ed., The Austin Papers, Vol. II, American Historical Association, United States Government Printing Office, Washington D. C., 1928

 

Creighton, James A., A Narrative History of Brazoria County, Texian Press, Waco, Texas, 1975

 

Few, Joan, Sugar, Planters, Slaves, and Convicts, Few Publications, 700 Hill Street, Gold Hill, Colorado, 2006

 

Gray, William Fairfax, From Virginia to Texas, 1835 Diary of Col. Wm. F. Gray, Fletcher Young Publishing Co., Houston, Texas, 1965

 

Jones, Mary Beth, Peach Point Plantation, Texian Press, Waco, Texas, 1982

 

Smith, Travis L. Jr., “Steamboats on the Brazos” & “Travis L. Smith”in A History of Brazoria County:  The Old Plantations and Their Owners in Brazoria County, Texas:  Steamboats on the Brazos, n.p., 1958

 

Smithwick, Noah, The Evolution of a State, Stec-Vaughn Company, Austin, Texas, 1968

 

Strobel, Abner J., The Old Plantations and Their Owners of Brazoria County Texas, Revised Edition, The Union National Bank, Houston, Texas, 1930

 

The Handbook of Texas Online

 

 

 



Elizabeth could be the daughter of Thomas Westall and his first wife who died in Virginia.

Smithwick, Noah, The Evolution of a State, Stec-Vaughn Company, Austin, Texas, 1968, p. 70.

John Austin was a close friend of Stephen F. Austin but may have been only a distant relative.

Barker, Eugene C. ed., Letter Stephen F. Austin to James F. Perry, March 31, 1828, San Felipe de Austin, The Austin Papers, Vol. II, American Historical Association, United States Government Printing Office, Washington D. C., 1928, pp. 28-29.

Ibid., Letter James E. B. Austin to Stephen F. Austin, September 16, 1828, pp. 107-109.

Ibid., Letter Stephen F. Austin to Emily M. Perry, October 24, 1828, pp. 135-136.

Handbook of Texas Online, s.v. "," http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/AA/fau8.html (accessed December 11, 2008).

Creighton, James A., A Narrative History of Brazoria County, Texian Press, Waco, Texas, 1975,  p.37.

Barker, Eugene C. ed., Letter Stephen F. Austin to Emily M. Perry, May 26, 1829, Brasoria, The Austin Papers, Vol. II, American Historical Association, United States Government Printing Office, Washington D. C., 1928, p. 217.

Ibid., Letter James E. B. Austin to Emily M. Perry, Brasoria, May 26, 1829

Creighton, James A., A Narrative History of Brazoria County, Texian Press, Waco, Texas, 1975,  p.37.

The Texas Gazette, October 3, 1829

Jones, Marie Beth, Peach Point Plantation The First 150 Years, Texian Press, Waco, Texas, 1982, p.13.

Barker, Eugene C. ed., Letter Eliza M. Austin to Emily M. Perry, January 6, 1830, Brazoria, The Austin Papers, Vol. II, American Historical Association, United States Government Printing Office, Washington D. C., 1928, pp. 318-319.

Handbook of Texas Online, s.v. "," http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/PP/fph5.html (accessed December 11, 2008).

James F. Perry and Stephen S. Perry Papers, Letter Moses Austin Bryan to William Joel Bryan, San Felipe, February 5, 1830.

Barker, Eugene C. ed., Letter Stephen F. Austin to Thomas Barnett, July 6, 1830, Brazoria, The Austin Papers, Vol. II, American Historical Association, United States Government Printing Office, Washington D. C., 1928, pp. 442-443.

Ibid., Letter Eliza Phillips to Col. Stephen Austin, October 24, 1830 p. 521.

Ibid., Letter John Austin to Stephen F. Austin, ~Oct 24, 1830, p. 522.

Ibid., Report of Appraisers, November 1, 1830, pp. 526-527.

Ibid., Letter John Austin to Stephen F. Austin, November 1, 1830, pp. 525-526.

James F. Perry and Stephen S. Perry Papers, Letter Eliza M. Phillips to T. J. Pilgrim, 1834

Guy M. Bryan son of Emily Perry by her 1st husband James Bryan.

Jones, Mary Beth, Peach Point Plantation The First 150 Years, Texian Press, Waco, Texas, 1982, p. 71.

Barker, Eugene C. ed., Letter James F. Perry to Stephen F. Austin, May 13, 1834, San Felipe de Austin, The Austin Papers, Vol. II, American Historical Association, United States Government Printing Office, Washington D. C., 1928, pp. 1055-1056.

James F. Perry and Stephen S. Perry Papers, Letter Emily M. Perry to James F. Perry, Peach Point, May 26, 1835.

In 1833 is a letter of introduction from an old friend of Stephen F. Austin: “This letter will be handed you by my friend Col. William K. Hill of this place, he is on a visit to Texas for the purpose of making a permanent location for himself and family; You will find him a gentleman of intellingence, and every way worthy of your attention and friendship… he has been for several years clerk to the Senate of this State And discharged his duties with approved ability and skill…” Barker, Eugene C. ed., Letter Charles W. Webber to Stephen F. Austin, February 15, 1833, Columbia, Tennessee, The Austin Papers, Vol. II, American Historical Association, United States Government Printing Office, Washington D. C., 1928, pp. 928-929. Some family sources have his arrival as 1830. This may not be William G. Hill but he was known as Col. Hill before any service with the Texas army.

Handbook of Texas Online, s.v. "," http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/HH/fhi27.html (accessed December 11, 2008).

Gray, William Fairfax, From Virginia to Texas, 1835 Diary of Col. Wm. F. Gray, Fletcher Young Publishing Co., Houston, Texas, 1965, pp. 169-170.

Ibid.

Probate Case #382 Zeno Phillips

Stephen F. Austin Jr. possibly buried at Waverly Plantation.  I have not been able to locate grave.

Streeter Collection, Document # 667 Argument prepared by  ____ Andrews for the Plaintiffs Eliza M. Westall & Wm. G. Hill vs James F. Perry & Wife.

Jones, Mary Beth, Peach Point Plantation l The First 150 Years, Texian Press, Waco, Texas, 1982, pp.92-93.

Streeter Collection, Document # 667 Argument prepared by  ____ Andrews for the Plaintiffs Eliza M. Westall & Wm. G. Hill vs James F. Perry & Wife

Jones, Mary Beth, Peach Point Plantation l The First 150 Years, Texian Press, Waco, Texas, 1982, pp.89-95.

McCormick, Andrew Phelps, Scotch –Irish in Ireland and America, Private Publishing, New Orleans, Louisiana, 1897, 142.

James F. Perry and Stephen S. Perry Papers, July 19, 1839 Bernard, September 16, 1842 discusses division of  property “below me on the Bernard”, April 7, 1845 Waverly, July 20, 1845 Waverly, January 13, 1846 Waverly, February 28, 1846 Waverly, June 15, 1846 Bernard, and August 20, 1846 Waverly, Brazoria County Historical Museum, Angleton, Texas

Probate Case # 258 Eliza M. Hill, County Clerk’s Office, Brazoria County Courthouse,  Angleton, Texas.

Civil Cases 974 & 975 James R. Phillips et al vs Eliza M. Hill & William G. Hill, County Clerk’s Office, Brazoria County Courthouse, Angleton, Texas.

 Probate Case # 258 Eliza M. Hill, County Clerk’s Office, Brazoria County Courthouse,  Angleton, Texas.

Probate Case # 258 Eliza M. Hill, County Clerk’s Office, Brazoria County Courthouse,  Angleton, Texas.

Record of Wills Volume C Page 307, Brazoria County Clerk’s Office, Brazoria County Courthouse, Angleton, Texas.

In the Probate Case #748 William G. Hill is the bill from David Davies for $10.00 to dig his grave and also a bill for $20.00 for two lots in the Columbia Cemetery. William G. Hill is listed as owning Lots 5 & 6 in Block 5 in the records of the cemetery although there are no markers on these lots. The question is whether William G. Hill is buried with Eliza in the Columbia Cemetery ?  Was Eliza buried at Waverly and her remains removed to Columbia? Where are the remains of Stephen F. Austin II?

Record of Wills Vol. C  pp. 493-394, County Clerk’s Office, Angleton, Texas.

Strobel, Abner J., The Old Plantations and Their Owners of Brazoria County Texas, Revised Edition, The Union National Bank, Houston, Texas, 1930, p. 20.

Mrs. Q.B. Hill, “Widow’s Application for Confederate Pension,” no. 30454

Record of Wills Vol. D pp. 6-7, County Clerk’s Office, Angleton, Texas.

BCDR: K 458/59 & K 482.

Probate William G. Hill Jr. Case #895

BCDR: Q 490/91 &  Q 488/89

BCDR: N 758

BCDR: O 324/26 & O 611/13.

BCDR: O 777/78 & P 557

BCDR: Q 500/01

See Waldeck Plantation Report

BCDR: R 17 & Biennial Reports of the Directors and Superintendent of the Texas State Penitentiary at Huntsville, Texas with The Report of the Prison Physician, Commencing December 1, A.D. 1878, and terminating October 31, A.D. 1880, News Book and Job Office, Galveston, Texas, 1881, p. 51.

BCDR: R 173

BCDR: S 631/33

BCDR: U 85 & Biennial Reports of the Penitentiary Board and Superintendent of the Texas State Penitentiary at Huntsville, Texas, with Reports of Physician and Chaplain, November 1, 1880 to October 31, 1882, E. W. Swindells, State Printer, Austin, Texas, 1882, p. 36.

BCDR: 1 31/32 & 4 70.

BCDR: 3 105/07.

Smith, Travis L. Jr., “Steamboats on the Brazos” & “Travis L. Smith”in A History of Brazoria County:  The Old Plantations and Their Owners in Brazoria County, Texas:  Steamboats on the Brazos, n.p., 1958, pp. 71-72.

Plat of Osceola 1893 BCDR: 24 44

BCDR: 21 523, 525, 546, 548, 555, 584, 586, 587,  & 589

Brazoria County Historical Museum Family File #20.

BCDR: 67 194/95 & 70 278/89

BCDR: 85 330/31

Few, Joan, Sugar, Planters, Slaves, and Convicts, Few Publications, 700 Hill Street, Gold Hill, Colorado, 2006, pp. 107-114.


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