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Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
November 17, 2010     Hays Free Press
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November 17, 2010

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Page 4D + FUTURE COLUMNISTS Hays Free Press November 17, 2010 + News traveled slowly in Mexico's largest prov- ince, but by Nov. 20, 1835 word began reaching the scattered settlements that the San Felipe Consultation had picked Henry Smith to be the first governor of Texas. "Henry who?" was the puzzled reaction of many colonists, who found it hard to believe their representa- tives had passed over far better known figures like Stephen F. Austin and Sam Houston. Yet in the frantic opening phase of the struggle for independence, Smith's untested leadership and sandpaper personality were preferred over the "Fa- ther of Texas" and the future "Hero of San Iacinto." It is possible his contem- poraries presumed there was wisdom in his years, for at 51 he was an elder statesman in the insurrection. Both Austin and Houston were only 42 years old, and most influential colonists were even younger. But Henry Smith was living Pdroof that men, unlike wine, o not necessarily improve withage. The Kentuckian came to Texas in 1827 well in advance of the Anglo-American wave. A hard-headed advocate of separation from Mexico, he gained a reputation for militancy at the 1832 Battle of Velasco by sustaining a near- fatal wound. With a creased skull as his badge of honor, Smith became a strident spokesman for the most zealous wing of the inde- pendence movement. At the November 1835 assembly in San Felipe, the loyal lobbying of allies like Branch T. Archer and John A. Wharton pushed hun past more qualified can- didates in the gubernatorial balloting. Invariably described by contemporaries as "irascible," Smith was a vainglorious char- acter cursed with an inflated sense of serf-importance. In his inaugural message to the Council, the legislative body selected at the Consulta- tion, he declared himself "the supreme executive of the free and sovereign state of Texas." Council members must have winced at his embar- rassing display of unbridled ego. As interim or provisional governor, Smith's power was by no means unFmlited, and public opinion was far from unanimous on which course the rebellion should take. From the very beginning of his tumultuous term, Smith was veto happy. Stubbornly determined to establish his executive prerogative, he quashed nearly every act and recommendation of the Coun- cil. Although the disagree- ments were often petty, he was dead-set on domination. A deeply moted hostility toward Mexicans of all politi- cal persuasions caused a bitter NewYear's confrontation be- tween Smith and the infuriat- ed Council. Their debate over a suggested offensive against Matamoros degenerated into a test of wills that wrecked the "fyou find yourself in the role of 'Family Chef' several ;.evenings a week, then why not emulate some of the great chefs of the world, and set up a little culinary herb garden that's close to your kitchen door. This is a surprisingly easy ~orOject to do, and fortunately r us central Texans, most of these culinary herbs thrive during the sunm]er and winter months. The list of these evergreen, winter-hardy herbs is exten- sive, and includes rosemary, ~avearsley, cilantro, garden sage, nder, winter savory, onion and garlic chives, Italian and Greek oregano.., and thyme. Pick a site close to your kitch- en that gets lots of sunshine. It doesn't need full sun all da~ but aim for at least 5 to 6 hours. One option would be to cre- ate a raised bed garden. A 4' x 4' IT'S ABOUT THYME square is large enough to grow at least 8 to 10 varieties. Place taller plants, such as upright rosemar~ toward the back and plant the shorter ones, such as creeping rose- mary or thyme, to the side and front. If the garden is viewed from all sides, put the taller rose- mary in the middle surrounded by shorter varieties. Sometimes having a garden plot close to the house isn't an option. An easy solution can be found in containers. Herbs can be mix-planted in larger pots, or they can be individually .planted in pots and displayed m groups. Put some herbs in tall pots, some in medium pots and some in short pots. Displayed together, they will look beauti- ful. Success with container gardening depends entirely on the quality of the soil you put in the pot. Peat moss mixed with sand, perlite and vermiculite works best. With extra feeding with organic plant food, youtr herbs should grow with the mini- mum of effort. There are plenty of commercial mixes available at local nurseries that are de- signed for container growing. Give growing herbs a try. It's easier than you think and having fresh herbs available and close to the kitchen is- as Martha Stewart would say- 'a good thing.' The idea of tak to Santa Anna str, pealed not only t( but also to the ov, majority of Texan of waiting for the invade, why not c Grande and thrm punch? An American-It assured the Corm can liberals by th, ng the fight cei mgly ap- C~ b the Council ;rwhelming Sm ~. Instead the dictator to 3, 1 ross the Rio twi r the first rot, COI orn refugee ~ oil that Mexi- the thousands an( would welcome I exans asob( liberators. Dr. Jam es Grant; Col whose personal al ;enda was to i the retrieval of his confiscated rasl property, confide~ ed the combined 1 Anglo rebels and ,' persecuted oppor topple the tyrant i Gov. Smith am mander-in-chie! the Matamoros I diametrically dit sons Denouncir g each and every Mexican a:; treacher- ous and untrustworthy, Smith rejected the scheme as a recipe for disaster. Sam Houston, who di~l not share the governor's rabid racial prejudice, cited ~he obvious itary flaws of red adventure acked into a c( mcil impulsive th's head. The] Matamoros ac B36 and in a tn ;t, appointed tl but supposed lmanders to c~ mith retaliated Council over d [ demanding ff y his edicts or C |ncil respondec aapeach the gm move the legi,, ttly predict- nol the power to e] night of the 5 mith called the anta Anna's sirr 9ly standing hi ents would Um ble to remove ] a no time. offiq :e, the dazed d~ I his corn- up ~L creek and dro blasted thei r own impeten dan but for 17 t he demoralize( Ferent rea- fail( d to muster a ( and by month's en, bot~ tared to meet Question: What kind of plants can I put in my pots this fall that are deer resistant? - Don and]eanninb Inbody, Hays Country Oald 2 Unfortunately deer love most of the winter ,t~,am..uals, es- pecially pansies and violas. The only winter and spring bloom- ing plants that deer dislike are snap dragons. However deer , I cant stand the taste of most of the fragrant culinary herbs. They won't touch rosemary, sage, oregano, lavetlder and thyme. Happy herb gardening and Happy Thanksglving~ If you have a question for Chris, send it via email to Or mail a postcard to It'sAbOut Thyme: I 1726 Manchaca ROad, Austin, TX 78748 www.itsaboutthyme. corn ill-con- Texans faced the grim chal- lenges of February and March ,rner, the1836 tragically crippled by a [y went over lack of civilian and military endorsed leadership. Smith remained :ion on Jan. governor in name only, a pa- ly bizarre thefic figurehead to whom no ree sepa- one paid the slightest atten- equal field tion. With the chain of com- :ry it out. mand in chaos, the army was by raking ripe for annihilation. e coals Destiny did not dictate the it the body sacrifice of more than Texans issolve. The at the Alamo and Goliad. If by voting Henry Smith and the Council ernor, a had not mistaken each other lators had for the enemy, those precious dorce, lives might not have been r bluff by wasted. ; ground. tim from Special Offer/Buy "Secession :puties were & Civil War"column collection ~aaing in for $14.20 and get "Outlaws .'e. On Jan. & Lawmen"or "Revolution & Council Republic"at half price. Mail uorum $21.30 to Bartee Haile, P.O. Box no longer 152, Friendswood, TX 77549 or order on-line at , CPA Fax 1512.295.8181 *Annual Pementa~ 80% or less; construction/developmea m caange ~thou~ notfae. Money Market [] $7 i,000 to $124,999 Jumbo [] 12 Month rates/terms may be different N~o prepayment penalty. ***Annual This credit union is federally insured to at least $;250,000 per member b t (Minimum Deposit of **Rate applies ins of Real Estate Call for details. 295.4089, x7194 $125,000 and Above Deposit 24 Months (Minimum Deposit of $95,000) real estate loans with a loan to value of withdrawal may apply. 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