A Guide to the Charles Grandison Bryant Papers, 1842-1867, 1941
A soldier, farmer, artisan, and merchant, Charles Grandison Bryant (1803-1850), who began studying house building around the age of 9, established an architectural firm in 1825 at Bangor, Maine. With two others in 1837, he founded a military school, which became a center for training Canadian separatists. After a planned invasion of Canada failed, Bryant and his son Andrew Jackson Bryant moved to Galveston, Texas, in 1839. He joined the Galveston Fusiliers in 1841, serving the next year during the invasion of Rafael Vásquez. He then chopped cedar for Hall’s Bayou, before returning to architecture in 1847. He designed Galveston’s St. Mary Cathedral Basilica, completed in 1848. In 1850, Bryant, now a Texas Ranger, encountered Lipan Apaches in a skirmish near Chocolate Bayou that resulted in his death.
Bryant married Sarah Getchell in 1827. The couple had seven children: Andrew Jackson (1828-1843), a sailor in the Texas Navy who died at sea when his ship sank; Charles Carroll (b. 1830); Martin Van Buren (b. 1834); Dewitt Clinton (b. 1836); Wolfred Nelson (b. 1839), father of Gideon Randall; Edwin Moore (b. 1845); and Mrs. Welthea Leachman (b. 1847).
Handbook of Texas Online, s.v. "Bryant, Charles Grandison,"http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/BB/fbrcb.html (accessed June 30, 2010).
Mundy, James H., and Earle G. Shettleworth. The Flight of the Grand Eagle: Charles G. Bryant, Maine Architect and Adventurer. August, Maine: Maine Historic Preservation Commission, 1977.
Photocopied manuscripts and a typescript comprise the Charles Grandison Bryant Papers, 1842-1867, 1941, which relate to Bryant’s activities with the Texas Rangers during the Mexican invasions of 1842, his financial reverses in the construction business and agricultural and cedar-cutting ventures, his family's migration from Maine to Texas, and his murder by Apache Indians. The collection also concerns the service of Andrew Jackson Bryant in the Texas Navy, his wounding in the Naval Battle at Campeche, and his death at sea. Materials include correspondence, invitations, newspaper clippings, a biographical sketch on Charles Bryant, and a poem by Welthea Bryant Leachman.
Charles Grandison Bryant Papers, 1842-1867, 1941, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
Basic processing and cataloging of this collection was supported with funds from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) for the Briscoe Center’s “History Revealed: Bringing Collections to Light project,” 2009-2011.
Detailed Description of the Papers