Marker location: Spring and Bowie St., Columbus
Marker erected: 1976
Marker Text: Fiftieth Anniversary Celebration of the American Declaration of Independence
Most of the "Old Three Hundred" settlers in Stephen F. Austin's first Texas Colony in the early 1820s came from the United States and were proud of their Anglo-America Heritage. Austin discouraged any display of American loyalties which might anger the Mexican authorities or violate colonization laws. Many customs persisted, however, including observance of July Fourth as American Independence Day. On July 4, 1826, settlers around Beason's Crossing, nucleus of the present town of Columbus, planned a barbecue to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the signing of the American Declaration of Independence. No doubt, many colonists traveled long distances for this important gathering. West of the Colorado River in Green DeWittt's Colony, a small group set out from Gonzales on July 2 to attend the barbecue at Beason's. While camped for the night, they were attacked by Indians but managed to escape. Returning to Gonzales, they found their homes plundered and one man killed. The other settlers were visiting at a nearby cabin and escaped the Indian raid. The survivors then proceeded to the safety of older settlements along the the Colorado. (1976)
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