On December 16, 1861, Oscar Branch Colquitt was born. His family soon moved to Daingerfield, where the young man worked as a tenant farmer. In case you haven't brushed up on your history in awhile, Colquitt became a newspaper publisher (he founded the Pittsburg Gazette), a state senator, and eventually, the Texas governor. He ran on a platform of anti-prohibition, and had the kind of personality that drew Texans to hear him speak.
On December 16, 1826, Benjamin Edwards and 30 men rode into Nacogdoches and declared the Republic of Fredonia, attempting a minor rebellion known as the Fredonian Rebellion. His brother Haden had received a land grant near Nacogdoches and had settled fifty families there, and Benjamin was afraid the land would be taken by Mexico. Sadly for the brothers, the Mexican authorities easily crushed the revolt, and Edwards was forced to flee across the Sabine. He later died in Mississippi.
On December 18, 1860, Texas Rangers attacked a Comanche hunting camp at Mule Creek, and they were surprised to find a white woman with blue eyes among the tribe, as well as her baby. It turned out to be Cynthia Ann Parker, who had been captured 24 years earlier and who was now fully entrenched in Comanche life. She didn't want to be "rescued," though, and tried several times to flee her white family and go back to her Comanche family. Her brother took her to live in Van Zandt County, and later she moved in with her sister near the Anderson/Henderson County border, where she died around 1870.
Other interesting Texas history events from December 14-20:
December 18, 1883: Ranald Slidell (Bad Hand) Mackenzie, a hard-driving cavalry officer, was diagnosed as suffering from "paralysis of the insane."
December 20, 1907: Democratic leader John Cleary was killed by a shotgun blast while sitting in a San Diego restaurant.
December 20, 1886: The Driskill Hotel opened in Austin, becoming a place favored by social leaders and politicians; currently, restoration efforts continue.
December 19, 1890, rival Lubbock County towns consolidate, move their homes and buildings to a new homesite, and agree to be called Lubbock.
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