Texas Progressive Alliance July 9, 2012
The Texas Progressive Alliance thinks America doesn’t look a day over 235 as it brings you this weeks blog roundup.
BossKitty at TruthHugger sings back to the choir, you know that small loud minority willing to sacrifice everybody else to satisfy their selfish rhetoric. Op Ed: Crazy Weather Really A Liberal Conspiracy?
Now that the Affordable Care Act has cleared the Supreme Court hurdle, when will uninsured Texans begin to get health insurance? WCNews at Eye on Williamson says that it’s up to the Texas GOP, What health care choices will the Texas GOP make?
The NAACP opened their national convention in Houston this week, and with Joe Biden and Mitt Romney on the speaker’s list, it promises to be newsworthy. PDiddie at Brains and Eggs has a media credential and will be filing reports from the scene.
Neil at Texas Liberal blogged about Danny Glover coming to Houston on behalf of Houton janitors looking for a modest raise.
Spanish governor issues ordinance on cattle branding
July 10, 1783 , Domingo Cabello y Robles, Spanish governor of Texas, issued a bando, or ordinance, imposing strict guidelines for the roundup, branding, and export of unbranded cattle. At the time, the province was in the midst of a protracted livestock controversy. Cattle rustling between vecinos and missions, depletion of cattle through wasteful slaughter and excessive exports, and noncompliance with an ordinance of January 1778 were holdovers from the administration of Cabello’s predecessor, Juan María de Ripperdá. Enforcing existing regulations and preventing illegal exports became Cabello’s major concerns. Cabello’s enforcement of livestock regulations resulted in much animosity from ranchers. Soon after his departure from the province in 1787, the ranchers filed a memorial against Cabello charging him with arbitrary and unjust decrees and misrepresentations that denied them rights to unbranded cattle. The case did not adversely affect his career, for by 1797 Cabello had reached the rank of field marshall.
Lamar expresses good will to Chief Colita
July 09, 1839 Mirabeau B. Lamar, president of the Republic of Texas, wrote to Colita, chief of the Coushatta Indians, expressing regret that conflicts had occurred between the Indians and white settlers. The event is notable because it marked a sharp divergence from Lamar’s general Indian policy. Unlike Sam Houston, whose administration had attempted to conciliate the Indians–especially Houston’s “own” tribe, the Cherokees–Lamar thought that the Indians should be either exterminated or driven from Texas. This animus helped to bring about several of the most serious clashes between Indians and whites in early Texas. Lamar’s proffer of friendship toward the Alabamas and Coushattas was therefore a striking exception to his usual policy. Perhaps he was remembering how these East Texas Indians had helped the white settlers to escape from the Mexican army in the Runaway Scrape (1836). In any case, Lamar offered land to the Alabamas and Coushattas and appointed Joseph Lindley as a mediator between the Indians and the settlers. The gesture turned out to be futile, however, for when the Indians saw their land being marked off, they assumed it was for white settlers and abandoned the area; whereupon white settlers took the land.
Presidential candidate drowns in Galveston Bay
July 11, 1838, James Collinsworth fell or jumped off a boat in Galveston Bay and drowned. Collinsworth, born in Tennessee in 1806, was a candidate for the presidency of the Republic of Texas, along with Mirabeau B. Lamar and Peter W. Grayson. Collinsworth served as a district attorney in Tennessee, where he was a political ally of Andrew Jackson and Sam Houston, but moved to Texas by 1835. He represented Brazoria at the Convention of 1836 and was a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence. Collinsworth later served as Houston’s aide-de-camp, in the Senate of the republic, and as the first chief justice of the republic. He also helped organize the Texas Railroad, Navigation, and Banking Company and was a charter member of the Philosophical Society of Texas. His death, which occurred less than two weeks after the announcement of his candidacy for president, was generally presumed to have been a suicide, and his body lay in state in the capitol in Houston. In 1876 the legislature named Collingsworth County in his honor, though the act establishing the county misspelled his name.
Chief Kicking Bird retires after fighting McClellan at the Little Wichita
July 12, 1870, at the battle of the Little Wichita River, Capt. Curwin B. McClellan and a force of fifty-five troopers of the Sixth Cavalry attacked a camp of Kiowa Indians under Chief Kicking Bird. The Indians had crossed the Red River into Texas and terrorized white settlers across Wichita, Archer, Young, and Jack counties. McClellan caught up with them on the Little Wichita River in what is now Archer County. He soon realized that he was outnumbered by two to one, and that the Indians were equipped with Spencer rifles, superior to his equipment. His men were attacked from all sides, and three died during a retreat. After cowboys from the Terrell Ranch and twenty troopers reinforced McClellan, Kicking Bird broke off the engagement. In his report McClellan praised Kicking Bird’s generalship and called for larger forces to protect the frontier. This was the last time Kicking Bird was ever involved in hostilities. He dedicated the rest of his life to establishing better relations between the Kiowas and the whites.
New law authorizes sale of state land to finance education
July 14, 1879, the state of Texas authorized selling state land for fifty cents an acre. Half the proceeds were to go for reduction of the public debt and half to pay into the Permanent School Fund, established in 1876. The state sold 3,201,283 for $1,600,641.55 in fifty-two West Texas counties. On January 22, 1883, the Fifty Cent Act was repealed as a public necessity resulting from fraudulent speculation in the land.
Texas government offers huge prize for eradicating long-nosed cotton pest
July 13, 1903, a proclamation was made from the steps of the Texas Capitol offering a $50,000 prize for the discovery of a way to rid Texas of the boll weevil. This small snout beetle had been ravaging cotton crops in Mexico for at least two millenia. Its introduction into Texas seems to have been first announced by Charles W. DeRyee of Corpus Christi in a letter dated October 3, 1894. It had reached all of East Texas by 1903 and by the 1920s had spread north and west to the High Plains. The insect continued to spread through Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, the Carolinas, Tennessee, and Virginia. Calcium Arsenate was found to be reasonably effective against it, and during the 1920s fluorides were introduced. Since the weevil does not survive well on the high plains of Texas, this region proved to be more favorable to future cotton production. The 1903 prize was never awarded to anyone.
Transplanted Baylor College of Medicine opens in Houston
July 12, 1943, Baylor College of Medicine opened in a former Sears, Roebuck store in Houston. The school, the only private medical school in the southwest, was founded in Dallas in 1900 as the University of Dallas Medical Department, even though the University of Dallas did not yet exist. Baylor University assumed control three years later, and awarded 1,670 M.D. degrees between 1903 and 1943. In the latter year, however, a severe conflict arose between civic leaders and physicians in Dallas and Baylor’s Baptist administrators over the denominational character of the school. In exchange for fiscal support and new quarters in a proposed medical center to be erected on Hines Boulevard in Dallas, the school was expected to relinquish administrative control and denominational affiliation. Under longtime dean Walter H. Moursund, a Presbyterian, the school extricated itself from this dilemma by accepting an invitation from the M. D. Anderson Foundation and other Houston benefactors to relocate to that city instead. In 1947 the school moved to the Roy and Lillie Cullen Building, becoming the first institution to locate in the Texas Medical Center. The relationship between the Baptist General Convention of Texas and Baylor College of Medicine was terminated by mutual agreement in 1969, and the school became a nonsectarian, freestanding nonprofit corporation.