Bastrop County, Texas


This page contains extracts from letters, submitted by researchers.

Bastrop County History

A short look at the beginning of this county

These letters are written by Mariah Louisa Stanley Moore Cook Jones. They were to her daughter, Ellen Josephine Moore Hughes, wife of William Frank Hughes. She was married to Levi Moore, Tobias Cook, and William J Jones. They discuss her daily life and the search for the killer of her son. The verbiage, punctuation and spelling have not been changed. These letters were found in the family bible and were together, but it does seem to be two separate letters.

Contributed by: Shirley Hughes Hickman.

Marion S Hughes>William Frank Hughes>James Dempsey Hughes> Grady Frank Hughes> Shirley Hughes.

september the sixt

desdimonia po b

eastland Co.

Dear son and daughter

I will this lonsome day

try to write you a few

lines this leaves all

well romillder Moore

is Maried (1896)his name

is hugh nollen now

betty has got john

faribell bulley an

demsey frunill an

murcel the baby they

call him bud they

hav got bob jentry

under a too thousin

bond i dont see how

they will keep him

from haning they

air giting plain proof

that he kild

bome with out

any caus

The united state has

taken it in hand

they sent here and

taken jim cook to

fort smith he had a

bill found the trial

will come off in

nov- december there will about foore go down

ther from here gess Mickey is yet in the

nation he is dooing

all he can he has

found one man that

saw him shoot bome

bob jentry is a meen

man and the people

is afraid of him

john has rented a plase in three miles of me for next year

well ellen I was

glad to git the

childrens picturs

netti is tall as me

ira is nearly grone

Dillan is nine the

twenty third of last

january they air

all fine looking

perry is slender

bilt he is a good

boy just as good to

mind me as he can

bee and good to work

he is agoing to make

a fine looking man

we hav bin having

aheap of bad colde


ellen if I live to

git free from home

I will come

to see you again

i hope i will see that

time again on this

earth Levi don't go to

see aney of the girls he

is just like som olde

maried man he is

not able to worke

hard but he has to

worke well write

when you can I

doo hope you all

hav maid plenty

to doo you I will

close for this time

I remain your

Mother until


M L Jones

to ellen hughs

Ellen I will tell

you my dear childe

I never expect to

git well aney

moore I am in

bad health just

abel to git around

about the plase the

docters sais I hav

got the hart troubl

sometimes I smother

so bad that I half

to sit up in the bed

from midnite

untill day write

to me don't git mad

at me for I can not

write I am sick so

much farewell to all

M L Jones to all

Well ellen there

is a drouth on us

there wont bee much

cotton maid but little

corn the people will

see hard times untill

they make another

crop loo has joind the

christen church there

is too metings going on

but I don't git to go

to non of them for

Mother is so I canot

take her aney where

she is as much

troubel as a little

childe and acts as

simpel as one at times

you may no that I

hav a hard time and

a lonsom time here

alone with her she

is no compney to me.


The entries from October 1 to 14, 1839, are in the issues for January 26, June 29, and December 14, 1883.  Printed in the Presbyterian

Tuesday, Oct. 1st, 1839. Got off at 1:30 for Austin, the new Capital, on a small Mexican mare, for which I had given $100.00, Texas money. I soon began to regret my trade for such a beast. Rode to Dr. H's., twenty-four miles, rather poor fare, dirty beds, but paid enough, $3.75.

Wednesday, Oct. 2nd. Rode to San Felipe de Austin, twenty-seven miles. Stopped at Kingsburry's, wretched fare, great noise in a billiard room adjoining, slept but little, but no charge.

Thursday, Oct. 3rd. Went to Dottery's, twenty-five miles. But little timber, rolling prairie. Some very agreeable prospects. Some Dutch settlers. Good fare for $3.00. Met with Backus, from Montgomery, Alabama.

Friday, Oct. 4th. Rode to Rutersville with Backus. Stopped at Reid's. Walked to campmeeting. Heard Bro. Sullivan preach.

Saturday, Oct. 5th. Rained while Dr. Hanie was preaching. An uncomfortable day. I preached at 3 p. m. from Is. 53:5. Snead preached at night.

Sabbath, Oct. 6th. Communion at 3 p. m. at campmeeting. I went to La Grange, and preached at night at the house of Mr. Fitzgerald, from Is. 41:21. A good congregation. Loughridge and Dr. Barnet with me.

Monday, Oct. 7th. Returned to campmeeting. Bro. Hill holding forth at 11 a. m. At 3 p. m. made a missionary address, Clark also, a good result. I preached at night from Phil. 1:27. Great excitement afterwards but little seriousness.

Tuesday, Oct. 8th. Campmeeting closed. Curious tactics of Dr. Hanie, for effect, at parting. Set off for Bastrop. Rain. Stopped at Hill's, twenty miles. Met with Judge Webb's family.

Wednesday, Oct. 9th. Got to Bastrop, twenty miles. River very high. Preached at Henderson's. Stayed at Brown's.

Thursday, Oct. 10th. Spent the day at Bastrop. Found several Presbyterians. Saw a coat with a small hole in the front, made by a poisoned Indian arrow, from which the wearer had died in great agony very soon.

Friday, Oct. 11th. Set of at 12 m. Got to Glascock's. Waters had been high but had abated. A lonesome road, had been recently infected by the Indians. Whithurst and I alone, neither of us armed. Slender fare for $4.00. Passed a house where Mrs. Coleman and her son had been recently murdered by Indians.

Saturday, Oct. 12th, 1839. Arrived at Austin, 15 miles, at 12 m., safe and sound, but tired. A few men just setting off to bury the bones of thirteen men recently murdered by Indians, on Brushy Creek, twenty miles from Austin. They soon returned, reporting that Indians had been within ten miles of the city, and had shot two men the day before. There was great encitement, but more talk than action. Guards were posted around the town. Slept very well at Bullock's the principal hotel, a large number of boarders, met a number of acquaintances.

Sabbath, Oct. 13th. Attended Sabbath School, at 10 a. m., twenty-two scholars. Preaching at 11. After preaching, organized the Presbyterian Church of Austin, consisting of six members. Brethren Bullock and Burke were chosen Elders. At 4 p. m. administered the communion of the Lord's Supper to eight persons; the first time that ordinance had ever been celebrated so far southwest, by Protestants, in North America. But few spectators present; could not have preaching at night, owing to the excitement about the Indians. General Burleson arrived about dark, with seventy men, to go after the Indians. May the Head of the Church make this small germ then and there planted a great tree, whose branches shall overshadow the nation. O Lord, behold and see and visit this vine and make it to flourish. Slept on the floor in Bullock's large room with General Burleson's army.

Austin had been located in June. Now there were some seven hundred people there, in cabins and shanties and tents. The government offices were in log cabins, on the main Ave., fronting the river. “Beautiful for situation” is Austin, with its seven hills.

Monday, Oct. 14th. Spent the day visiting friends and making acquaintances. Supped on Buffalo meat, and hot coffee in a tin cup, with Bro. Woodruff, in his camp. The Bullock Hotel was a curious structure. A substantial frame first story, on this two log rooms on either end, with a commodious room between, all enclosed. (After nineteen years I was there again. It was then Smith's Hotel, the same frame and log rooms.)