Rash Ramblings

A runner once, an explorer always!

Category : Holiday

Memorial Day 2011

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Texas Independence Day

In honor  of the 175th anniversary of the declaration of Texas’ independence I am posting a letter my great-great-great grandfather, Samuel T. Allen, wrote upon his arrival into Texas. This letter was written to his brother Caleb back in Stonington, Connecticut. The original letter is on file in THE SAMUEL T. ALLEN PAPERS at THE CENTER FOR AMERICAN HISTORY on the University of Texas Campus at Austin. This letter was transcribed by Gary Rash on April 5, 2003.

San Jacinto Augt 25th 1830

Dear Brother,

This will inform you of my safe arrival in the province of Texas in good health and spirits. I arrived on the 21st of July after a long tedious & rather dangerous passage of eleven days from New Orleans the trip very often made in 4 days – we were blown off the coast and suffered much for water – but I feel thankful that our fate was no worse for on examining the vessel after our cargo was discharged we found her to be completely rotten – so bad that I could pierce my knife through her plank I think therefore that I have been peculiarly fortunate to escape as well as I have I am certain that in the future I shall not put to sea without first ascertaining whether I am in a sea boat or a mere wreck.

I purchased a mule immediately on my arrival and have been travelling ever since in this time I have seen nearly the whole of this province and I must agree with all others who have seen it that it far surpasses any other country I have ever seen I believe this spot to be the Eden of North America I think I have at last arrived at the promised land – the fairest spot on earth.

My dear Brother you have requested of me to inform you when I found a place where you could do well by your trade I have now found that place a golden opportunity now presents itself for you to accumulate a fortune on a short time by your trade I shall proceed to print out to you the advantages—Common wool hats such as sell in Connecticut for 75 cents are here worth from $2.00 to $2.50 – roram(?) hats that sell with you for $3.00 & $4.00 are here worth $8. to $12.00 & hats of better quality sell proportionatably high – furs are cheaper here than with you wool is about the same – If you become a citizen under the Mexican government (which is a republican government like the one under which you now live) as I have you will receive 1111 acres of land – if you area a married man you will receive four times this amount which is 4444 acres this of itself is certainly a great inducement

A gentleman with whom I now board by the name of Lynch says that if you will come here & commence your business: he wall pledge himself to give you one acre of Land in a very suitable place & convenient for your business as it borders on the San Jacinto river . so that you would never want for water close to your door . I think this place will be an excellent place for your business you can live here and take up your land where you please. —

I do not wish to urge you to come to this country on account of my dear Mother and Sisters who I know need someone to remain with them – but still feeling for you the affection of a Brother. I cannot bear the idea that you should work so hard and so long as you do and will if you remain in Connecticut and barely gain a subsistence after all your toil – when if you were to come to this country you could accumulate property with so much more facility – this argument alone must outweigh every objection – we all wish to make money as fast & as easy as possible, it is what we all strive for in this world – It was for the purpose of accumulating wealth that I first left my native country. the land of my birth. And all those that were near and dear to me – and until I have accomplished this end at least in a measure I shall never cease to strive I think it to be a duty incumbent upon the Brother & Son of the widow & fatherless to strive to make all in their power and endeavor to alleviate their wants

I would advise you my dear Brother as one who feels deeply interested for your future welfare & prosperity to come to this country as soon as possible and be assured that as far as lies in my power I will render you any service which you may want—

Uncle George is here with me and coincides me in opinion in respect to your emigrating to this country he says that I must tell you not to delay but to come on as soon as possible before some one stops you in your place –

Write me as soon as you receive this and inform me of your determination – If you conclude to come out I will write you a letter of instructions – informing you of your route and cheapest mode of conveyance – likewise what will be necessary to bring with you.

Give my best love to all with you & mother & sister when you see them & be assured I remain your affectionate & loving Brother.

Samuel T. Allen

 

03/02/2011     Apparently a PR for my 2 mile course this morning.     Wed  16:50.45

Gary

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Some days…

 Some days you wake up and you just don’t want to do what you know you need to do. I got up this morning with the intent to go run, but really the last thing I wanted to do was run. I got dressed and sat on the couch mediating and meditating and anything else I might conjure to get my rear out the door. I did make it out and started on my run. They talked last night like it might be raining this morning. I could feel the moisture in the air and when I picked up the newspaper, the little bag it was in was wet. I guessed it might have been misting a little earlier.

I took off on my run with the initial goal of getting to the one mile marker on the trail, which would give me about 4.5 miles. I was really stiff and uncomfortable and not really enjoying myself, but I pressed on anyway. I knew I wasn’t going to break any records today. I did, after a mile or so, decide that as long as I was out I might as well go to the spider which would be more like six miles.

After I made the spider and was about a quarter of a mile into the return trip, I saw a figure coming toward me on the trail. It was a heavy set little man, dressed all in blue and he had snow white hair and a beard. This hit me as a funny image to be seeing here in the early morning darkness of Christmas Eve. Then as he passed me, he says “Good morning!” His voice was dep and robust. I guess it seemed funny because as many times as I had made this run, I had never noticed him out before. I liked the images though, because it took my mind off my discomfort.

I continued on and eventually finished in just under an hour. I walked around the block before I went inside. As I was making my way to my back on to my street, it started misting. It was warm enough I didn’t mind too much. Just after I got back inside the house I could hear a light rain starting. It is funny how things just work out right sometimes. I am glad I went ahead and made the run like I did.     Thu W34:00.68     Fri  59:55.16

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It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…

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