Matagorda in Matagorda County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
Early Texas Freighting
Industry that moved goods to build, sustain distant settlements in 18th-19th century Texas. Teamsters defied Indians, Bandits, and Texas weather to supply outlying forts and inland towns, which suffered if imports from the Gulf Coast, U. S. or Mexico slackened.
One of few regular runs was Austin--Matagorda. Wagons left each city on 1st and 15th of every month, crossing Matagorda, Wharton, Colorado, Fayette, Bastrop and Travis Counties. Houston was major Texas freight center because of access to Galveston Bay. George T. Howard and Charles Ogden were early freight men.
First carts, later wagons with 3000-7000 lbs. of cargo were drawn by 3 to 6 yoke of oxen or mule teams. "Grass rates" for oxen, grazed on way, were less than "Corn rates" for faster mules. Early wooden carts were 15 ft. Long with two 7ft. Wheels and a thatched roof. Their hubs were greased with prickly-pear leaves. For heavy loads, rough roads, the 2-ton "Prairie schooner" was best. Caravans varied from 5 to 150 wagons.
When resting or attacked, wagons formed a round, protective ctorral and trained mules took their places instantly. Teamsters often
Early Travel, Transportation and Communication series
Erected by the Moody Foundation 1967
Erected 1967 by State Historical Survey Committee. (Marker Number 1357.)
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Industry & Commerce.
Location. 28° 41.342′ N, 95° 58.299′ W. Marker is in Matagorda, Texas, in Matagorda County. Marker is at the intersection of Fisher Street and Laurel Street, on the left when traveling west on Fisher Street. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Matagorda TX 77457, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Site of Dream Colony of Jane McManus (here, next to this marker); Commemorating Gulf High School (a few steps from this marker); Old Matagorda Post Office (a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named Old Matagorda Post Office (a few steps from this marker); Frontier Building (a few steps from this marker); School House (within shouting distance of this marker); Fisher-Sargent-Gottschalk House (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Matagorda Lodge No. 7, A.F. & A.M. (approx. ¼ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Matagorda.
Credits. This page was last revised on October 27, 2020. It was originally submitted on October 27, 2020, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. This page has been viewed 32 times since then. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on October 27, 2020, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.