What happened today in Texas history? October 8 | Arts & Culture
On this day in 1821, James Long and his Army of filibustering Texans surrendered at La Bahia to Colonel Juan Ignacio Perez, leader of Mexican troops in the area. Long's expedition was an early attempt to gain control of Texas from Spain, an effort he devoted his career to.
After initial success in 1819, Long's men were driven out by Colonel Perez in October. Long regrouped and established headquarters at Point Bolivar. His wife, Jane Long, who eventually became known as "The Mother of Texas," joined him at Point Bolivar, where they remained for some time. In 1821 Long and 52 men sailed to capture La Bahia, and they had success...initially.
Four days later, Long was force to surrender to Colonel Perez, and was taken prisoner and sent to Mexico City. While he was there, his wife Jane vowed to wait for him at Point Bolivar (opposite Galveston Island) until he returned, whenever that might be. Jane was pregnant with their third child at the time.
James Long was killed, supposedly accidentally, by a guard while imprisoned in Mexico City in 1821, but Jane didn't know. She stayed at Bolivar Point, as she promised, bearing the winter and dwindling supplies, and was left alone, as most of the other inhabitants of the fort left due to dwindling supplies. All who remained were Ann, her daughter Ann, and her maid, Kian.
Jane gave birth to Mary James Long in an icy tent on December 21.
Finally, in March, a friend of her husband persuaded her to leave Bolivar Point. She became well-known in Texas, buying and running a boarding house, running a plantation, and other ventures, and was pursued by suitors such as Sam Houston and Stephen Austin. However, she remained true to her husband her entire life, and died his widow at the age of 82 in 1880. Read more about Jane on lsjunction.com and tshaonline.org.
On this day in 1926, The Witte Memorial Museum in San Antonio opened. Have you visited the Witte? It's located adjacent to Brackenridge Park in the midtown area. It is dedicated to natural history, science and South Texas heritage. The Witte Museum is named for San Antonio businessman Alfred G. Witte who bequeathed $65,000 to the city for construction of a museum of art, science, and natural history.
Today's Texas quote: "Van Horn, Texas, is so healthy, we had to shoot a man to start a cemetery." ~Bill Goynes, who coined this civic slogan for the town of Van Horn, then was gunned down during an argument and was the first man buried in the Van Horn cemetery in 1892. (via texasbob.com)
Today's Texas song: Luckenback, Texas by Waylon Jennings