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History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas
By Capt. B. B. Paddock in 2 volumes (1906)


PREFACE

That Americans are becoming aware, of the fact that they have a history is a matter of frequent observation and remark among writers and men of affairs generally. It was one of the changes in American thought considered worthy of especial note by Hon. James Bryce, on his recent visit to this country after an absence of twenty-five years. This keen student of American institutions thus expresses the result of his observation: “Reverence for the past and a desire to maintain every sort of connection with it is a strong and growing force among educated people.” Furthermore, this is one of the hopeful signs of the times. Well it is, for the nation as for the individual, when its career is anchored at both ends; is descended from a sturdy and virile ancestry and looks forward to a not less worthy posterity; rejoices both in the memories of a splendid past and in the hopes of a brilliant future. Such a nation or individual holds true in the course of best ideals and endeavors, is in the line of progress of its greater destiny. .

It is this growing reverence for the past that renders such a work as the History of North and West Texas both valuable and timely. Even now many of the personalities and achievements of the county’s pioneers are matters of written record only, and, too often, those records are scanty and insufficient and difficult of access. To gather up and piece together in historical form and according to relative importance these records is the purpose of this work, in the preparation of which the constant endeavor has been to make a standard, comprehensive and authentic history, which, while narrating the wonderful story of the past, describes also the present, in its various aspects, with such thoroughness as to make this work a historical “base-line” from which all subsequent civic growth and progress may be computed.

Closely interwoven with every present event of material and civic progress are the character and activities of men. The Alamo lives forever because Travis and his comrades died there, and in their death gave birth to Texas Liberty. So, in only lesser degree, every town, every institution, every industry of North and West Texas exists and grows because men have devoted some portion of their energy and character to its upbuilding. It has been the purpose of this work to bring out this personal aspect of the history of North and West Texas; to mention events mainly in relation to the persons most closely connected with them; to describe the country as far as possible through the careers of the men who have developed it. This is the true office of biography—to bring events into their proper relation with persons. To carry out this novel and interesting plan of history writing sketches have been sought of representative men who have figured in the various phases of North and West Texas affairs up to the present time, and whose careers illustrate both local and general history.

In line with these purposes, it is believed that this work is a real and permanent contribution to the history of Texas. By observing historical proportions and setting the facts in a narrative form, it has been necessary to exclude irrelevant details that, however interesting in themselves, give bulk rather than symmetry; rather than make these volumes an encyclopedia of historical information, it has been thought best to pour over the rubble of facts the cement of literary narration. No effort has been spared to secure accuracy, and acknowledgement is due to the many who have heartily co-operated with and assisted the editorial staff in obtaining data for the history.

Volume 1  |  Volume 2


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