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Milam County, Texas

“Old Settlers of Milam County (Texas)
By M. H. Addison of Caldwell

It was in the late summer or late fall of 1835, that my father with his family, consisting of mother, four daughters, six sons and a grand-mother on the maternal side, entered the territory in question, locating the grand-mother’s headright of a league and labor of land “Mark Carnaghan head right” on the county abstract in Sterling C. Robertson’s colony. Let me say right here, this grant was made on the motion and demand of the land agent who gained one half for the locating. It was later declared invalid on the claim that the grantee was not the head of a family. The grant was subsequently confirmed though I believe at a time when the agent securing it was a member of the Texas congress. I cannot resist the temptation to indulge in a little personality at this point. It was the agreement of the Mexican government with its empresarios, that each son coming of age was to receive 640 or 320 acres of land. The republic of Texas assumed the responsibilities of that of Mexico, and three of my older brother’s received the allotment. I was in my non-age at the time of annexation, but the state of Texas fell heir to all the responsibilities of the republic of Mexico. As I have never received the 640 or 320 acres of land, it is or ought to be a just unliquidated demand against the state of Texas. I know of only three other persons I the same list – S. A. Scott of Williamson County, B. A. Porter of Burleson and T. A. Porter of Big Springs. This is a simple statement of one of the facts bearing on the history of the times. My oldest brother did not accompany the family from Baltimore at the time of the removal, but about a years time from our arrival in the country we were no little surprised by a visit from him. He was on his way to the “States” from San Antonio, where he had participated in the first capture of the Alamo. He had been one of the “Irish Greys,” a noble ally of Texas in her extremity, whose generous conduct far anterior to “Tatnallo|” had demonstrated and illustrated that “blood is thicker than water.” He afterwards became a citizen of Texas for some years, but unable to stifle “first love,” returned to his native city, where he died in 1849. Perhaps I have devoted to this already more space than it is entitled to, but I crave your slightly further indulgence. Such men as Isaac S. Addison are not born every day. The same may be said of others. Judge H. B. King (your father) may be named among them, upright, honorable, reliable, and yet with a reasonable appreciation of his own dignity. He was though, a later emigrant than any other named, coming to Texas in 1833. Esq. John W. Porter, ever active and indefatigable in his own business, meddling with that of no one else. The Scott brothers, James W., a lay preacher self-appointed, I presume, unless he may have considered his credentials attested by a greater than Solomon. Then there was his half-brother, Robert W. Scott, an ordinary good man with no special traits segregating him from the common. Not so his brother, Phillip B. Scott, who with the coolness, equilibrium and self poise suggestive, if not of the control of fate, of a superiority to and disregard of sternest threatenings, in diseased, enfeebled body, had and exhibited the energy of a Napoleon. Isaac S. Addison was built on a different plan from any and all the others. If not self-depreciating, he had a retiring and self-distrusting spirit, yet under the leadership of duty no ordeal could confront him, capable of turning him from a course choosen (sic) as the proper one, obediently to the ordering of chance, or the ruling of a supreme power. The individuals thus newly met as emigrants from the different states of the United States, were with one exception members of the M. E. church, they forming a nuclus (sic) for an organization of that church when the proper time came. It used to be considered both wise and funny to expend witticisms at the cost of those who, in coming to Texas, had left their country for their country’s good. Whatever grounds there may have been for this in other places, it may be safely said that in no other region under Heaven was there ever introduced a new civilization and a new religion by a more upright and orderly array of exponents.

SOURCE: Addison, M. H.. “Old Settlers of Milam County (Texas).” Proceedings of the Sixth Annual Reunion of the Old Settlers’ Association of Bell County - Held at Belton, Texas, November 5, 1904 and Papers Read at the Reunion, p. 8-9.

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Created on 15 Feb 2001 and last revised on 4 March 2003.