Green, Duff (1791–1875)

By: W. W. White

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: January 1, 1995

Duff Green, real estate promoter and speculator, son of William and Lucy Ann (Marshall) Green, was born on August 15, 1791, in Woodford County, Kentucky. In 1816 he moved to Missouri, where he engaged in land speculation, established a large mercantile business, studied law, and participated in state politics. He was editor of the St. Louis Enquirer from 1823 until 1825, when he became editor of the United States Daily Telegraph, an early organ of Andrew Jackson's administration. Green was a member of the "Kitchen Cabinet" until 1831, when he split with President Jackson and aligned himself with John C. Calhoun.

As an advocate of the annexation of Texas, Green was appointed United States consul at Galveston in 1844, with additional duties of carrying messages to Mexico in the interest of acquiring Texas, New Mexico, and California for the United States. During the absence of Andrew J. Donelson, chargé d'affaires of the United States, Green tried to secure passage of a bill by the Texas Congress establishing the Texas Land Company and the Del Norte Company. These companies, aided by a Texas army and Indians from the United States, were to occupy and claim for Texas the northern provinces of Mexico. Green offered President Anson Jones stock in the proposed companies if he would support the plan. When Jones refused, Green allegedly threatened to start a revolution and overthrow the Jones administration. On December 30, 1844, Jones gave Green his passport and barred him from Texas as a consular official. The incident did not seriously impair the friendly relations existing between Texas and the United States.

After the Mexican War Green promoted coal, iron, and railway development projects in the South. Among his industrial ventures after 1865 was the organization of the Sabine and Rio Grande Railroad. Among his publications was Facts and Suggestions, Biographical, Historical, Financial, Addressed to the People of the United States (1866). Green died on June 10, 1875, at Dalton, Georgia, and was buried there.

E. D. Adams, British Diplomatic Correspondence Concerning the Republic of Texas, 1836–1846 (Austin: Texas State Historical Association, 1918?). Dictionary of American Biography (New York: Scribner, 1928–81). Herbert Gambrell, Anson Jones: The Last President of Texas (Garden City, New York: Doubleday, 1948). Anson Jones, Memoranda and Official Correspondence Relating to the Republic of Texas (New York: Appleton, 1859; rpt. 1966). Annie Middleton, "Donelson's Mission to Texas in Behalf of Annexation," Southwestern Historical Quarterly 24 (April 1921).

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

W. W. White, “Green, Duff,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed August 16, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

January 1, 1995