A Guide to the Albert Clinton Horton Papers, 1850-1881
Albert Clinton Horton (1798-1865), the first lieutenant governor of Texas, moved to Texas from Alabama in the spring of 1865. Before coming to Texas, Horton served as a State Representative in Alabama (1829–1830, 1833–1834). An early supporter of the Texas Revolution, Horton returned to Alabama in 1835 to recruit army volunteers, creating the Mobile Grays. Additionally, Horton helped organize a cavalry unit in Matagorda in February 1836 and served under Colonel James W. Fannin. Horton’s unit served as a scouting party prior to the battle of Coleto Creek. Upon returning to find Fannin and his men surrounded by Mexican forces, Horton and the scouts fled. This action ultimately saved his life as Fannin and his men were executed shortly afterwards in the Goliad Massacre. However, his escape, perceived as cowardly, hindered his later political career.
Following the war, Horton served as a senator in the Texas Congress until 1838, when he lost a campaign for the vice presidency of Texas. He went on to chair the 1839 committee to locate a new capital for Texas, to serve as a captain during the Mexican incursions of 1842, and to attend the Convention of 1845. Subsequently, Horton became the first lieutenant governor of Texas in 1846, and governor pro tem from May to November 1846 during Governor James Pinckney Henderson’s absence to deal with the Mexican War. After his term as lieutenant governor, Henderson never held another public office. He attended the Democratic national convention in Charleston in 1860 and the Secession Congress in 1861.
Horton retired to his plantation on Caney Creek in Wharton County prior to the Civil War. He also possessed another plantation near Matagorda. By 1861, he owned over 150 slaves. However, the war bankrupted him, and he died at Matagorda in 1865.
Source: Handbook of Texas Online, s.v. “Horton, Albert Clinton,” http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/HH/fho62.html (accessed July 21, 2010).
Legal papers, a will, a property inventory, and correspondence comprise the Albert Clinton Horton Papers, 1850-1881, and relate to Horton’s financial and business activities. The bulk of the papers concern the sale of slaves to Horton by Josiah S. Brown of Charleston, South Carolina, and Brown's subsequent efforts to collect payment from the sale. The papers include a mortgage containing the names of these slaves. The will and property inventory pertain to the settling of Horton’s estate following his death in 1865.
The collection is open for research use.
Albert Clinton Horton Papers, 1850-1881, 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.
All or a portion of this collection is available on CAH microfilm 18,335 Series G, Part 1, Reel 33. Photocopies should be made from microfilm, not from originals. See microfilm inventory on Reference shelves under the title, “Ante-Bellum Plantations.”
Detailed Description of the Papers