James P. Hamilton, Republic of Texas minister to Great Britain, wrote a letter to Monroe Edwards on November 23, 1840 informing the swindler that he knew his letters of introduction from famous Americans were forgeries and that he was a fugitive from Lone Star justice.
Rather than return to Texas where a prison cell was waiting for him, Edwards went to New York. Convicted of forgery in a sensational trial, he was sentenced to a long stretch in Sing Sing. Beaten by guards for an escape attempt, Edwards soon died of his injuries.
Yielding to mounting public pressure, David G. Burnet resigned as the temporary head of state on October 22, 1837 making way for Sam Houston to be sworn in a month early as the first president of the Republic of Texas.
This is the subject of the “This Week in Texas History” column for Wednesday, October 16 through Tuesday, October 22. Read it in your local newspaper or with a private email subscription available on this web site.
John A. Wharton chartered a ship to sail to the rescue of his brother William H. Wharton, held captive by Mexican forces at Matamoros, but had to swim ashore when boat sank in a storm on October 3, 1837.
John discovered that William and rest of Texas prisoners had long since escaped making his dangerous rescue attempt totally unnecessary. Prominent figures in the Texas Revolution and the Republic, the Wharton brothers died three months apart: John from the fever at age 32 in December 1838 and William from the accidental discharge of his own gun at 37 in March 1839.
When the Second Congress of the Lone Star Republic convened on October 5, 1837, Texans finally got down to the business of creating a government that could actually run the county. It had taken them a year and a half to face the fact they would not be a part of the United States anytime soon.
That is the subject of the “This Week in Texas History” column for the week of Wednesday, October 2 through Tuesday, October 8. Read it in your local newspaper or as an email with a special private subscription. See website for details.
North Carolina congressman Robert Potter castrated two men on August 28, 1831 he suspected of fooling around with his wife. The subsequent scandal and a six-month jail sentence led to his departure for Texas in 1835.
Potter signed the Declaration of Independence and was elected to the Republic senate in 1840. A participant in the Regulator-Moderator Feud, a band of Regulators surrounded his home in March 1842. Potter ran for a nearby lake but was shot to death before he could reach the safety of the water.
“This Week in Texas History” for Wednesday, August 28 through September 3 examines the fourth and final presidential election held in the Republic of Texas.
With Sam Houston and his chief rival, Mirabeau Lamar, sitting this one out, the two primary candidates generated more yawns than interest. The only thing Edward Burleson had going for him was his reputation as an Indian fighter, while Anson Jones was a little too full of himself for the typical Texan. But someone had to win and preside over the Republic until statehood took effect.
On June 16, 1838 a bitter ex-President, back in Washington as a lowly congressman, began a one-man filibuster to keep the Republic of Texas out of the Union.
Seventy year old John Quincy Adams had a long list of reasons for his name-calling crusade, including the fervent belief that the Texas Revolution was nothing more than a pro-slavery land grab. When he finished his talkathon 21 days later, annexation had been put on the back burner for the next seven years.