Description[Houston vs. Runnels Gubernatorial campaign]. Facts for the People. 8vo. 32 pp. Possibly disbound pages from a pamphlet. Text in two columns. Moderate foxing with some rippling, small tears, and very minor loss to edges. Minor pencil marking at rear. A generally very good copy of this exceedingly scarce item.
This publication presents reasons for voting against Sam Houston--and re-electing H. R. Runnels--in the upcoming Texas Gubernatorial election of 1859. After a general outline and synopsis of Houston's record, "Governor Runnels and the Frontier," along with the "Constitutional Powers," and the "Record of Gov. Runnels" is is addressed. Runnels additionally authors a "Circular" to his fellow citizens dated June 23rd, 1859. Following is a "Report of the Peace Commissioners to his Excellency Gov. H. R. Runnels," along with statements of Maj. Neighbors, Capt. John A. Nelson, and numerous others. A damning indictment of "Houston's Frontier Record" and his protection of the Indians is given ample room later in these pages. Several pages of reprinted letters follow.
"The people of Texas have never been called upon to exercise the right of suffrage in an ejection of such importance as that which is to come off in August next.
The recent letter of Gen. Houston accepting the nomination of the "Austin Faction," as their candidate for Governor, has aroused the democracy of the State, and we are encouraged in the belief that proper exertions on our part will give us a most triumphant majority, and extinguish forever the little vitality left in the Know Nothing-Opposition Party." From the papers of B.A. Shepherd.
Benjamin Armistead Shepherd was born in Virginia on May 14, 1814. Due to the poor conditions of the land and a dwindling family fortune, he left Virginia in the 1830s and arrived in Galveston, Texas. He married Mary Dobson in 1841 and settled in the growing town of Houston. A personal friend of General Sam Houston (whom he had met at age 19), Shepherd established himself as a prominent landowner and one of the foremost citizens of Houston, involving himself in many entrepreneurial adventures before founding and serving as president of the First National Bank of Houston in 1866. In 1875, he arrived in the newly formed San Jacinto County where he organized the town of Shepherd along the proposed Houston, East, and West Texas Railway. He died in Houston in 1891.
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