Lone Star by Joseph Najera

texas

You can see the word Maverick in the highlighted portion of this map. That is the name of this particular county. You can find the Rio Grande and the small town called Eagle Pass. Across the river is Mexico.

You also can see the small town of Piedras Negras. That is where my father was born.

There is another small town, which you can see on the map, called Crystal City. Milady and I taught for a year there. We liked it there and considered staying but circumstances brought us back to California.

Just north of Crystal City is an even smaller town called La Pryor. There are many families there who share my last name. I may never know if we are related.

One more thing concerning this map of West Texas is towards the top a small town called Bracketville. The town of Del Rio, Texas is off to the left and San Antonio this to the right over a hundred miles east.

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Bracketville is where John Wayne shot his movie of The Alamo. We took some time to visit that movie set. It was pretty complete back then, in the 1970’s. I heard that it has been abandoned for many years now.

That brings me back to the map of Maverick County. It was created in 1856 and named for a man. His name was Samuel Maverick. He was a politician and land baron and a cattleman.

maverick                                                                  (1803-1870)

He was born in Pendleton, South Carolina. He grew up and attended Yale University, graduating in 1825. He became a lawyer.

Ten years later his life led him to Texas. It was a land of opportunity and he joined the many who were seeking to make a fortune.

He participated in the Siege of the Alamo until Travis sent him out to get reinforcements from the men meeting at theTexas Convention. As we know he returned to late.

Throughout the remainder of his life he continued to invest in land and participate in the politics of the state. For a time he was the mayor of San Antonio.

He was a cattleman. One curious thing was his lack of interest in branding is cattle. Eventually any cow or steer found without a brand was called a Maverick.

His descendents continued to live in the San Antonio area. One of them owned a dairy away from the center of town on Babcock Road. The dairy is gone now the farm house is still there.

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Here’s the front of the house. The walls are made of stone. It’s in pretty good shape for being over 100 years old.

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This is a closer look at the front of the house. That is a guest bedroom on the left. Milady and I have spent many nights there visiting the owner.

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There are chairs on the veranda. It makes a nice place to sit in the shade and do some bird watching.

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There is a deck in the back. It is covered and makes some nice shade for visiting and for meals.

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The screen door leads into the kitchen. There’s a room to the left with comfortable seats and a big screen TV.

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There’s a formal dining room next to the kitchen. We have only dined there once. It makes sense since I am not very formal.

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The living room gets plenty of use. It is used on Sundays for a Christian service.

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That’s Crissy Villarreal on the left. She organized a family reunion for her husband’s birthday. We see two of the three caterers who are setting up the food.

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It is hard to beat Texas brisket.

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We live in California so my wife does not get to see her family very often. There’s Milady, AKA Jackie with the red hair. One of her sisters, Joan is sitting across from her.

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   More family were there.

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There’s the Man of the Day, and the Man of the House, The Reverend Johnny Villarreal, Milady’s older brother. He married my wife and I.

   (There has to be a better way to phrase that.)

 

 

About jedwardnajera

I am a Poet. I live the life of a poet. I am an artist, a member of Gallery 9 in Los Altos, California. I published a novel Nena the Fairy and the Iron Rose, available through Amazon Books. I spent over thirty five years in a classroom. My father kept a living record of his lifetime as he lived through the Twentieth Century. He was born in 1908 and almost lived long enough to see us enter the new millennium. He was a mechanical engineer and had a wonderful love of history and science. He entrusted to me nearly 400 pages that he wrote through the years. He wrote in Spanish and I have spent six months translating these pages into English. Now I am in the process of editing, rewriting, and revising them. I am trying to post a new entry or chapter each Friday. Check in on us at least once a week for the latest post.
This entry was posted in Family History, Family Reunion, Movie History, Texas History, The Alamo and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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