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Lamar inaugurated as president of the Texas Republic


On this day in 1838, Mirabeau Buonaparte Lamar was inaugurated as the second president of the Republic of Texas. His predecessor, Sam Houston, appeared in colonial costume and powdered wig and gave a three-hour "Farewell Address." Algernon P. Thompson, Lamar's secretary, reported that the new president was indisposed and read his inaugural remarks. Lamar's inaugural speech declared the purposes of his administration to be promoting the wealth, talent, and enterprises of the country and laying the foundations of higher institutions for moral and mental culture. Though he had only mixed success as president, Lamar's support for education was one of the high points of his administration. His proposal that the Congress establish a system of education endowed by public lands resulted in the act of January 26, 1839, which set aside land for public schools and two universities. Although it was decades before the school system was established, Lamar's advocacy of the program earned for him the nickname "Father of Texas Education."

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