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Hughes, Reece (1811–1893)

B. J. McMillan Biography Entry

Reece Hughes, early settler, was born in Bedford County, Tennessee, on November 28, 1811. The family later moved to Franklin County, Alabama. In 1829 Hughes went to Texas on a buffalo hunt, but his party was driven out by Indians. He and his brother Robert returned to Texas in the spring of 1838 and stopped at Blossom Prairie, Red River County, to raise a crop. In 1839 they moved south along Trammel's Trace and settled near the site of present Hughes Springs in Cass County, where they were joined by other members of their family. In April 1841 Reece Hughes married Elizabeth Rose, daughter of William Pinckney Rose; later he participated in the feud between Rose and Robert Potter. After the death of his first wife in 1853, Hughes married her sister, Mrs. John W. Scott. In 1856 he moved to a site 3½ miles southeast of Hughes Spring, built a home called the Brick House, and erected an iron furnace. His opposition to secession caused considerable disagreement with Confederate authorities during the Civil War. The Confederate government confiscated his iron furnace and operated it from 1863 to 1865. Hughes was ruined financially by the war. He died at Hughes Springs on October 18, 1893, and was buried in the family cemetery, one mile east of Hughes Springs.

Howell R. Hughes Papers, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.

Time Periods:

  • Antebellum Texas

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

B. J. McMillan, “Hughes, Reece,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed November 30, 2020,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.