Capt. Samuel Evans biography

CAPTAIN SAMUEL EVANS, deceased, and often referred to in these pages, was born in Garrard county, Kentucky, October 28, 1831, the fifth of thirteen children born to Hezekiah and Nancy (Cole) Evans. He completed his schooling at the age of fifteen years, after which he taught for a time, and remained with his parents until coming to Texas in 1853. In the same year he located in Tarrant county and during the first three months served as deputy sheriff of Robinson county. He next went to Brownsville where he purchased a herd of ponies, brought them to this county, and ever since made his home here. Mr. Evans purchased and located on a tract of land which he improved and farmed until the opening of the late war. He was the first to take a cargo of hides from Tarrant county to New Orleans, and brought the first drove of Mexican ponies to this locality.

In 1853, when the Weatherspoon family were massacred by Indians, Mr. Evans organized a company of sixteen men and followed them to the Twin mountains, where a fight took place, also in Erath county at Ball mountain at the head of Stroud’s creek and in Palo Pinto county. Darkness then overtook them and the Indians were lost sight of. A number of men were killed, and two men and several horses were wounded, but they succeeded in getting nine scalps. Mr. Evans rode a horse which was a half-brother to Grafton, the first horse ever sold over $10,000 in the United States. His horse was slightly wounded.

In 1861, at the outbreak of the Civil war, our subject organized and drilled a company of cavalry, afterward left his company and went to New Orleans, thence to Montgomery, Alabama, after which he returned home and was the only one to raise a company of infantry in Tarrant county. Mr. Evans first served in the Twenty-first Texas Regiment, Trans-Mississippi Department, took part in a number of battles, had many narrow escapes from death, and served until the close of the struggle. He was at Galveston at the time of the surrender, and he then brought his command to Robinson county, where they disbanded.

After returning home Mr. Evans brought a drove of sheep on credit which he shipped to New Orleans and sold at a loss of $800. While returning on the boat to Galveston, he made the acquaintance of a Jew cotton buyer and engaged with him to buy cotton, and at the end of two months he had made $2,800, the Jew having shipped the money to him in nail-kegs, and for which he never asked security or a receipt. During his four years’ service Mr. Evans never drew but two months’ pay, and he gave that to two boys to return to their homes. He paid a short visit to his mother, also spending some time in Chicago, and then returned to this county. He next took a drove of cattle to Kansas, shipping them from there to St. Louis, Chicago, and Philadelphia, and they were the first cattle bought and driven from Tarrant county.

In 1866 Mr. Evans was elected to represent his county in the legislature of Texas, and after the reconstruction served as a senator four years, his term in the lower house being in the eleventh, and in the upper house in the twelfth and thirteenth legislature. After witnessing the corruption of the parties, he denounced them both, and still refuses to be a believer in the principles of either. In 1877 he joined the call for a Greenback convention to be held at Memphis, and at that convention there were only seven delegates to represent the fifteen southern states. He was instrumental in bringing the first seven railroads to Fort Worth, and no man has ever done more to start and keep the wheels of progress rolling about Fort Worth than he.

Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas, Vol. I (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), pp. 246-247.