History

Thu
04
Apr

Multiple investigations made on Caney Creek ship wreck

This is a model of the Black Cloud, which was investigated in 1980 by students from the Nautical Archaeology Program at Texas A & M University. It illustrates construction techniques used later in western steamboat design. Several of the Black Cloud’s dimensions can be compared to the Caney Creek wreck. The Black Cloud was built in Orange, Texas, in 1864.

   Caney Creek, in Southeast Texas, was an important thoroughfare for steam navigation in the 19th century. 
   This creek provided communication between the wealthy upstream plantations, and the ports of Matagorda, Indianola, and abroad. In the 1800’s, Caney Creek, also known as “Cane Brake Creek,” or “Old Caney” emptied into the Gulf of Mexico just east of Matagorda Bay. 
   During the period of rising sea levels, a wide estuary occupied the present Caney Creek area. This estuary gradually filled with fluvial deposits of the Holocene Brazos-Colorado Delta. 
   The main eroding stream, presently the main channel of the Colorado River, split away from the older (Caney Creek) channel and diverted flow to the west. The massive log jam trapped sediments in the Colorado and prevented the river from creating a delta into Matagorda Bay until it was removed in 1929. 

Thu
28
Mar

"George Morgan: Matagorda Peninsula Bar Pilot" By Russell Huebner Matagorda County TXGenWeb

   Life on Matagorda Peninsula has never been easy. Historically, it was a place of dreams that never came true by dreamers enticed to the island by its own subtle beauty among other reasons.
   In the late 1600s, a French explorer, Rene Robert Cavalier Sieur de La Salle arrived near there. Twelve of his party of settlers ended upon the peninsula for a while and only six of them left a few weeks later.
   Karankawa Indians were responsible for the deaths of some of the six, leaving rattlesnakes, disease, and hunger to take care of the rest.
   This is borne out by documents from the resurrection of La Salle's ship La Belle in Matagorda Bay. Discoveries from La Belle enabled historians and archeologists to sort out LaSalle's almost every movement.
   But La Salle's men were just a part of the peninsula's history.

Thu
21
Mar

Carrington obituary in 1931

   Capt. J.C. Carrington, one of this section’s most highly respected and best loved of men, died at his home in this city this morning at 9:45 o’clock after many months of illness.
   The funeral, under the direction of Taylor Brothers, will be held Thursday afternoon at 2:30 o’clock from the Baptist Church with Captain Carrington’s pastor, Rev. Odis Rainer, Baptist minister in charge of the ceremonies.
   In the death of this good man the city and county lose one of our foremost citizens, his family a loving husband and father, his associates a splendid friend and his community, a matchless neighbor. His life amongst us was one of example, rectitude and dependability. His character was frank and sincere and his loyalty unquestioned. His jovial smile and genuine handclasp will be missed by all of those with whom he was wont to mingle.

Thu
14
Mar

"The Lost Santa Rosa treasure ship in West Matagorda Bay" Ray Theiss Lone Star Ghost Towns

A modern-day reproduction of a 18th century Spanish treasure ship.

Matagorda Bay is a large body of water located in-between Galveston and Victoria. 
   The bay itself is divided into two separate entities, East and West Matagorda, and both empty directly into the Gulf of Mexico.
   Since the mid-1500s, Matagorda Bay has been mapped and explored by sailors from Spain and France. 
   Over the course of its lengthy history, there are numerous accounts of shipwrecks and lost treasures scattered in the vicinity of the bay and upon the narrow strip of land named today as Matagorda island. 
   Of all the stories and legends though concerning Matagorda Bay and Matagorda Island, there is one that has caused serious speculations and research for over 30 years and that has yet to be fully discovered. 

Thu
07
Mar

Jane McManus: Texas’ only female colonizer

   Jane Cazneau [pseuds.: Montgomery, Cora Montgomery, Corrine Montgomery], journalist, author, promoter, and unofficial diplomat, daughter of William Telemachus and Catharina (Coons) McManus, was born in or near Troy, New York, on April 6, 1807. 
   Her father served in the United States Congress from 1825 to 1827. 
   She had three brothers, including Robert O.W.  
   She was apparently raised Lutheran, but seems to have become Catholic as a young woman. 
   She married William F. (or Allen B.) Storms in 1825 and had a son but was divorced in 1831. 
   Three years later she was named as Aaron Burr’s mistress in a divorce suit brought against the former United States vice president. 

Thu
28
Feb

"Duncan Plantation influence continues through present" By Thelma Smith Submitted by Willie Wiley Jr. and Jerrilyn Capers

Matagorda County TXGenWeb
This cemetery is located on property once owned by John Duncan. There is a Texas Centennial marker located at the site. There are also slaves buried on the property, but the names are unknown.

   Stephen F. Austin’s famed “Old Three Hundred” settlers in the 1820s and 1830s included several pioneers who created Caney Creek plantations.
   One of the historic plantations along Caney Creek was the John Duncan Plantation of the 1840s – 60s.
   John Duncan was born in Pennsylvania in 1788. He left the state and moved to Alabama, where he met and married Julia Coan. The couple’s five children were: Thomas, Sarah, John Jr., Mary and Samuel.
   In Alabama, Duncan had a successful steamship business that included a line on the Alabama River between Catawaba, Moblie and Selma. It’s unknown why, but Duncan abandoned his business, his plantation and his family and moved to Texas.
   Whatever the reason, Duncan arrived in Matagorda County in 1835. He enlisted in the Matagorda and Bay Prairie Company of Texian volunteers. He participated in the Oct. 9, 1835, capture of Goliad under Captain George M. Collinsworth, also of Matagorda County.

Thu
28
Feb

'Black Faces in Films and Movies' on exhibit now

Sentinel photo/Jessica Shepard
Donnye Stone's annual Black History Month exhibit is at the Matagorda County Museum from now until Spring Break. Stone's exhibit features “Black Faces in Films and Movies” across decades of cinema history. Stone pays special attention to Spike Lee and Tyler Perry's success in the movie industry and highlights their works in her exhibit.

Thu
21
Feb

State historical marker dedication for Palacios Colored School

Matagorda County Historical Commission Chairman Ona Lea Pierce welcomed those attending the state historical marker dedication for the Palacios Colored School Saturday. The dedication program included, from left: Bonnie M. Benson, the author of the marker narrative; Troy S. Lewis, with the Palacios Community Coalition; Pierce; and the Rev. Eric Young, pastor, Agape Family Outreach Church, who attended Palacios Colored School.

Thu
14
Feb

Palacios Colored School met the responsibility of educating its students

   EDITOR’S NOTE: A ceremony to dedicate a Texas Historical Marker for the Palacios Colored School will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 16, at the Sanford Community Center (see accompanying announcement on this page).
   In conjunction with this special event we’re again running the story behind the Palacios Colored School that was researched and written by Bonnie M. Benson as part of the state’s historical marker process.

By Bonnie M. Benson

Thu
07
Feb

Texas Revolution cannons named for Matagorda twin sisters

By Kathleen Tatum
Updated by Pat Morrow McMicken (Great, Great Granddaughter 
of Charles W. Rice)
    The sad news reached Geneva, New York, when their newspaper ran this obituary – “Died at ‘Mettagorda,’ (Matagorda) on the 11th of October,1838, after an illness of four months, Dr. Charles W. Rice, formerly of Geneva, New York in the 35th year of his life, brother of Mr. E. O. Rice of Seneca, New York. 
   Dr. Charles W. Rice married Margaret Hester Shaw in the state of New York, where their twin daughters Elizabeth Mars and Eleanor Madden were born.  
   Their other daughter, Calista Winegar Rice was born March 7, 1834 in New Orleans, Louisiana. 
   Dr. Rice applied for a Texas citizenship January 10,1838. 
   He stated he first came to Texas May 5, 1837 and brought his family November 3, 1837. 
   He applied for a conditional land certificate for 1, 280 acres of land March15, 1838. 

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