Dolph Briscoe, Jr. was the 41st governor of Texas. He was born April 23, 1923 in Uvalde County, Texas to Leigh Adolphus (Dolph) and Georgia M. Garvey Briscoe. His grandparents were Leigh Adolphus (the first of his Briscoe ancestors to be born in Texas) and Lucy A. Briscoe. Going further back on the Briscoe side, his great grandfather was Robert Permenias Briscoe and his great grandfather was Andrew Briscoe, a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence and a settler in the old Fort Bend area.
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(Image credit: FreddyFender.com)
Freddy Fender was born Baldemar Garcia Huerta in San Benito, Cameron County, Texas on June 4, 1937. His parents were Serapio and Margarita Garcia Huerta, who were migrant farm workers. Huerta was the oldest of four children and was raised around music, including lively “conjunto,” a traditional style of music that includes a blend of Tejano and references to German polka, including the use of an accordion. He performed as early as the age of ten on a Harlingen, Texas radio station. He dropped out of high school and lied about his age to join the United States Marine Corps. He served from 1954 to 1956. Huerta married in 1957 as he began to perform as “El Be-Bop Kid” and other stage names, doing covers of popular American hits of artists like Elvis Presley but singing them in Spanish. He and his wife Evangelina had five children. They divorced and remarried at one point, but otherwise were married for about forty-five years.
Sarah Horton was born in Virginia on 13 January 1819 to Enoch and Martha Stinson Horton. She moved with her family to Dallas County, Texas near Eagle Ford in 1844, becoming one of the pioneer families in the area. In September of 1847, she married Alexander Cockrell.
“Twin Sister” replicas at San Jacinto Battleground (image in public domain)
The “Twin Sisters” refers to two field pieces (artillery pieces) donated by ladies of Cincinnati, Ohio to the cause of the Texas Revolution. According to an article in the Austin American-Statesman from 1874, they were two identical six pound rifle cannon that were built by a Mr. Tatum at a foundry in Cincinnati and shipped by riverboat to Texas. They were delivered in person by Mr. Tatum himself in time to be used by General Sam Houston in the Battle of San Jacinto. Following the Revolution they became prized relics and were known to have been fired at ceremonial occasions including the fifth anniversary of the Battle of San Jacinto and the inauguration of Gen. Houston as President of the Republic of Texas.
Buddy Holly was born Charles Hardin Holley to Lawrence Odell and Ella Pauline Drake Holley on September 7, 1939 in Lubbock, Texas. He began to perform in the country music genre in Lubbock at high school dances. He had won a singing contest at age five but got his first guitar when he was fourteen. Buddy and a former junior high school friend named Bob Montgomery formed a duo they called Buddy and Bob and played anywhere they could get a foothold. They also were the opening act when other artists would tour the area and two different times, they opened for Elvis Presley in 1955 and one time the same year for Bill Haley and the Comets (“Rock Around the Clock”). Buddy and some high school friends then formed a group they called Buddy Holly and the Crickets and were known around Lubbock for playing dances and also spots on local radio. The Crickets were Jerry Allison on drums, Joe Mauldin and Nicky Sullivan on guitars. Buddy did the lead singing.
(Image credit: lrl.texas.gov, the Legislative Reference Library)
Governor Beauford Halbert Jester was born in Corsicana, Texas on January 12, 1893. His parents were George Taylor and Francis Paine Gordon Jester. His father George Jester had served as Lieutenant Governor of Texas under Governor Charles Allen Culberson. Beauford was also descended from the Hampton McKinney family, thought to be the earliest settlers in Corsicana in the 1840s, as his great grandfather was Hampton McKinney and his grandmother was Diadema McKinney, the daughter of Hampton McKinney. Beauford graduated from Corsicana High School in 1911 and University of Texas in Austin in 1916. He had attended Harvard Law School for around two years but enlisted in the United States Army when the U. S. entered World War I in 1917. He was only a month or so from being eligible to graduate when he enlisted.
Walter Leland Cronkite, Jr. is not a name that most people would associate with the State of Texas, but he had Texas roots. Walter, Jr. was born November 4, 1916 to Dr. Walter L. and Helen Lena Fritsche Cronkite in Missouri. The surname Cronkite is thought to be derived from a similar sounding Dutch name. However, traditional genealogical sources show that this particular Cronkite family had resided in the United States as far back as the middle 1600s with similar spelling, though for a time it was spelled “Cronkhite,” with an h after the k. Dr. Cronkite was a dentist like his own father had been. The family moved to Houston, Texas when Walter, Jr. was ten years old when Dr. Cronkite had accepted an offer to teach at a local dental school.