Category Archives: Uncategorized

“Murder Most Texan” Already in Second Printing!

Just heard from my publisher that “Murder Most Texan” completely sold out of the first printing six days after the official publication date of November 11!  The History Press has authorized a second printing, as it scrambles to fill all the back — and future — orders.

So I must say that my second book of 2014 is off to a great start.  Many thanks to those readers that have made “Murder Most Texan” such a rousing success!

Bartee

 

Crew Talked Captain Out Of Abandoning “Houston”

“A Japanese torpedo so badly damaged the HOUSTON on the night of Oct. 13, 1944 that the captain of the light cruiser gave the order to ‘abandon ship.'”

That’s how the Wednesday, October 8 through Tuesday, October 14 column for “This Week in Texas History” starts.  The second World War II fighting ship to bear the name of Texas’ biggest city looked like it would follow the first to the bottom of the Pacific, but that would spoil the story. Read all about it in your local newspaper or with a private email subscription available on the web site.

 

Waco Mob Could Not Wait For Justice

A week to the day after he was arrested for the rape and murder of a wealthy white woman in Robinson, Jesse Washington was found guilty on May 15, 1916 by an all-white, all-male jury and sentenced to death.

But a Waco mob could not wait for the black man’s legal hanging.  Washington was dragged from the courtroom and lynched on the square, where his body was set afire and burned for two hours.  Photographs were taken of the gruesome sight and made into postcards that sold like hot cakes. 

 

“Clubfooted Comet” Wins Triple Crown

The Wednesday, May 7 through Tuesday, May 13 installment of “This Week in Texas History” tells the story of Assault, the 1946 winner of horseracing’s Triple Crown and the first bred outside of Kentucky.

Can’t read this column because your local newspaper doesn’t carry the longest running feature of its kind in Texas history?  There’s a simple solution.  Sign up right now on this web site for a private email subscription to “This Week in Texas History.”  It’s that easy!

Houston Beat The Daylights Out of Congressional Critic

Final arguments were presented on May 7, 1831 in the U.S. House of Representatives trial of Sam Houston for the public beating of Rep. William Stanbery of Ohio.

Three weeks earlier, Houston confronted his critic on Pennsylvania Avenue and thrashed the Congressman with a hickory cane.  Stanbery pulled his pistol only to have it misfire sparing the life of the future President of the Texas Republic.  The House voted to convict Houston of contempt of Congress, but his punishment was a mild reprimand.

Eyewitness Report From San Jacinto Day

The annual San Jacinto Day festivities were moved to Saturday, April 26 this year and from what I could tell the turnout showed it.  I won’t win any prizes estimating the size of crowds, but my rough guess was somewhere in the range of eight to ten thousand.

Must admit this was the first San Jacinto Day I attended in person since the Sesquicentennial back in 1986.  My chief reason for going was to watch the battle reenactment, and I came away mildly disappointed. 

The fault may well be mine since I never have seen any reenactment up close and personal and probably expected too much.  Nonetheless, I see no reason to drag out an eighteen minute battle to a full hour with scenes from the “Runaway Scrape” and skirmishes of the day before the battle.