William Wald Glover Interview
Born 31 July 1846, Dallas County,
Died 13 March 1928, Dallas, Texas
(submitted by M. C. Toyer)
Biographical Note: William
Wald Glover was the first recorded birth after Dallas County
was formed in 1846. His father, George Washington Glover, came
to Texas from Alabama in 1843, with a caravan that included Samuel
S and Martilla Bobbitt Stockton. Samuel Stockton died soon after
his arrival and George Washington Glover later married the widow
Martilla Bobbitt Stockton who inherited the land grant of her
deceased husband. He located the claim adjacent to the northwest
corner of the claim of James Jackson Beeman in the area now known
as Urbandale in the city of Dallas. The W W Glover Cemetery on
Military Parkway is on this original claim.
Editorial Note: This interview
was published in 1925. The following was copied from a hand written
document from the estate of Frances Ida Beeman Cutchin, granddaughter
of W W Glover and Julia Lanhan and a great granddaughter of John
Beeman and Emily Hunnicutt. It has been transcribed verbatim
from that copy, but it is not known if this is the entirety of
the interview. Minor clarification of names and abbreviations
have been added in parentheses and additional paragraph breaks
have been inserted.
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often told me as a little fellow of the Indians. When she came
to Dallas, the Caddo Indians were located down about Caddo Lake
and part of the Cherokee tribe were living on land granted them
by General Houston in Nacogdoches County. Both tribes passed
to the north of Dallas on buffalo hunts, and to the south on
The Delaware located north of the
Red River, ranged as far south as Dallas, and were very friendly.
They were armed with rifles and the terror of the Comanche, who
had only bows and arrows. The settlers were always glad to have
the Delaware near them, since they knew there would be no danger
from the Comanche so long as he Delaware were about. Delaware
Frank, the Chief of the Delaware was always a welcome guest of
Before long the Cherokee Indians
of Texas got to stealing horses and cattle on so extensive a
scale, that the settlers rose up against them and ran them out
about 1849. After leaving their lands down about Cherokee County
they lived for a while on little Elm in Denton County, but finally
went to Indian Territory in Oklahoma.
The grant of land they had now
lies partly in Cherokee and partly in Henderson and Van Zandt
Counties. The town and county of Cherokee were named for the
tribe, but there were no Indians in this part of the country
in my time, namely from 1850 on.
The ground was covered with the
bones and skulls of buffaloes, but there were no live buffaloes
this side of Fort Worth, although now and then a few scattered
ones were found as far in as Grand Prairie. Wild horses too,
had for the most part, retired west of the Trinity. The settlers
had tried to exterminate them because of their bad example. The
gentlest plow horse getting among them became in two days the
wildest of the bunch.
Some people made it a business
to kill wild horses and boil the oil out of the flesh. Horse
oil made the finest soap grease in the world, and it was used
extensively by tanners in dressing leather. There were several
factories in North Texas in early days for rendering up the fat
of wild horses and hunters killed horses for their fat, just
as they killed buffalo for their hides.
The early settlers of the West
had no use for cattle as long as the buffaloes remained in the
country, but as the buffaloes were killed and driven out they
were obliged to substitute cattle. At first cattle died almost
as fast as they were brought to Texas. Calves born here generally
lived but were feeble and degenerate.
The Cherokee Indians had a species
of small wobbly cattle a large number of which they left on their
lands when they so hastily left Cherokee County and it was from
there that the settlers got a breed of cattle that throve in
this section. There were usually descendants of these cattle
all over the country until I was grown.
The first hogs introduced here
consisted of twenty-five or thirty head driven here by my father
from Red River early in the 1840's. He turned them loose in the
river bottoms above Dallas, as he was totally dependant on meat
for food. But the wolves, bear and panthers soon scattered them
and he lost them. It was however, no great loss since they were
worthless so long as there were plenty of bear.
From what I remember these hogs
were razorbacks, with the speed of greyhounds or jackrabbits.
They grew to a great size provided they were permitted to live
eight or ten years.
I have heard it said that the only
people in Dallas down to 1846, when the county was organized
were John Neely Bryan, J W Smith, Adam Haught, J M Patterson
and Colonel John C McCoy and their families. Col McCoy told me
when he arrived in 1845, he found John Neely Bryan clad in a
buckskin suit with moccasin shoes, the whole suit and man topped
by a coonskin cap.
Col McCoy was beloved of all classes
and we children flocked to him as the children of old fell in
behind the Pied Piper.
The inconvenience of having the
county seat as far away as Nacogdoches was soon felt by the settlers
and they started a movement to remedy things. They mapped off
what they considered would be a county of working size and a
mass meeting selected John Beeman to present it in the legislature,
not knowing how else to proceed.
But, Mr Beeman was denied a seat
in the legislature for the very plain reason that the county
he claimed to hale from was not found to be on the map, not to
mention that the election at which he was elected seemed to have
been held according to no known rules.
But, Mr Beeman, by the advice of
men more experienced than he in such matters, got the representative
of Robertson County to introduce a bill providing for the organization
of Dallas County. The bill becoming a law, the county was organized
by the election of county officers in July 1846.
The News has already published
that the first suit tried in the county was a divorce case and
the plaintiff, a woman, immediately was married to the foreman
of the jury granting the divorce.
The pioneers lived in a simple
and primitive way. With the exception of growing a little corn
and wheat, they did not attempt to farm. There were no mills
and the people pounded the corn in mortars, Indian fashion. Later,
small steel mills were introduced.
Local shoemakers made all the footwear
of the community. The materials for clothing were woven on handlooms.
The women wore linsey-woolsey and the men jeans. A pair of jeans
trousers fixed with buckskin was guaranteed to last always,
They needed nothing from the outside
but sugar, coffee, salt and tobacco. When the Civil War came
and cut off all importations we had to look out for ourselves.
We found rock salt at Grand Saline and a salt spring in Young
County. Settlers went to these places and boiled out their own
For sweetening we made out with
wild honey, which was easily found until 1863 or 1864, when African
cane was introduced from which we made sorghum and sugar.
Men did without tobacco for some
time but the desire lingered with such force we undertook to
grow the weed. What we raised was better than no tobacco at all,
but North Texas is not a tobacco growing region. But I still
raise my own tobacco and this old cob pipe I am smoking is loaded
with the genuine long green.
We never found a substitute for
coffee. We made a coffee colored drink of parched rye and other
things, but it was not coffee.
Land was cheap for a long time.
The Grigsby League sold for 25 cents an acre in the early 1850's.
In the late 1840's two sections of land just below Bois d'Arc
Island were bartered for a sack of salt. In fact land had but
little value until the settlers began to cultivate cotton in
the 1870's. I know a man who jumped at an offer of $ 5 an acre
for his land. He then rented part of the land and pitched a crop
of cotton. He was to give one-fourth of the crop to the new owner
of the land. The rent he paid the first year amounted to $ 6
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14 December 2000, by M C Toyer.
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