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HATCH, JOHN G.

HATCH, JOHN G. (1828–1903). John G. Hatch, innovator in grape culture, was born on June 28, 1828, in South Carolina, son of Mary (Simmons) and George C. Hatch. He moved to Colorado County, Texas, in 1841. He never married. He apparently left Texas in 1850 for California; however, he was back in San Patricio County, Texas, in 1863 and may have enlisted in the Confederate forces under Capt. John Rabb of the Twenty-ninth Battalion. After his father was murdered in 1873, Hatch returned to Ingleside and had enough California gold money left to buy his siblings' interest in the Hatch estate. John improved the vineyard started by his father, increased it to seventy-five acres, and, with the help of his widowed sister, Ann Hatch Byrne, who ran the house, built a wine industry that flourished in the area until the 1920s. At the winery's peak, grapes were shipped out of Ingleside by the carload. The wine was marketed in Corpus Christi and other South Texas towns. Produce was also taken into Corpus Christi by the wagonload over the Reef Road and by boat. Vines and rootstock from the Hatch vineyards were sent to France frequently from 1888 to 1914 because they were resistant to a grapevine louse. John prospered and invested in Corpus Christi real estate. He died riding after cattle on August 14, 1903, leaving his entire estate to Ann Byrne, who continued to run the plantation for a number of years. Hatch is buried in Rose Hill Cemetery, Corpus Christi. The Hatch and Robertson Building in Corpus Christi is still standing.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Corpus Christi Caller, August 21, 1903. Keith Guthrie, History of San Patricio County (Austin: Nortex, 1986).

Keith Guthrie

Citation

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Keith Guthrie, "HATCH, JOHN G.," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fhafj), accessed August 27, 2014. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.