Thursday, March 26, 2009

Red Brick Ranch

One of the landmarks of early Texas is Red Brick Ranch at Egypt, Texas, in Wharton County. This ranch was established by the Northington family in 1842. George Northington Jr. set up a museum near the ranch house. The first mention of Red Brick Ranch involves something known as the Runaway Scrape. This happened when the Mexican Army invaded Texas. People fled in wagons, buggies, horseback and on foot. The Mexican Army, headed by General Lopez de Santa Anna, met little resistance as it marched through Texas. The history of the Battle of the Alamo is well documented. From there the Mexicans marched on to the LaPorte area, and set up a large camp at a place known as San Jacinto. At this point the Mexicans were relaxed. They had captured a mulatto woman, a freed slave, at a plantation near LaPorte. This woman was turned over to Santa Anna. It was then that Sam Houston and a ragged army of Texans invaded the Mexican camp during the siesta hour. Santa Anna was in bed with the mulatto woman. He made a soldier give him a uniform worn by peasants. This disguise did not save him and he was captured by the Texans. Many in Sam Houston's army wanted to hang Santa Anna, but Houston thought it was better to have him as a captive so he could be used as a bargaining tool. That was what happened, and Texas was declared free of Mexico. Santa Anna was released and sent back to Mexico.

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