Mather, Samuel E. (1812–1878)

By: Stephanie P. Niemeyer

Type: Biography

Published: September 22, 2008

Samuel E. Mather, state legislator and businessman, was born on October 8, 1812, in Northumberland, England, son of Andrew Mather. Mather married Sarah Parker Smith on August 28, 1846, in San Augustine, Texas; they had at least one child. They moved to Williamson County and settled on the North San Gabriel River in 1849. He built a gristmill on the river; the town Gabriel Mills soon developed in the mid-1850s. A flood in 1854 destroyed his mill, but Mather was undeterred, and by 1856 he had rebuilt, adding a church and school to the area. In 1858 he was the postmaster for Gabriel Mills. Mather was a Mason and a founding member of the Mount Horeb Lodge No. 137, A.F. & A.M.

Mather served as a Texas state representative in the Ninth Legislature from 1861 to 1862. He moved to New Braunfels in September 1863 and founded a new gristmill on the Comal River. Already a center for flour milling, this new mill was meant to aid in the production of paper. Mather and his partner, Theodore Koester, named their company the Texas Paper Manufacturing Company. Samuel Mather died in Hays County in the vicinity of the future community of Kyle on May 17, 1878, and was buried there two days later.

History of Gabriel Mills, TX (, accessed October 3, 2006. History of Mount Horeb Lodge No. 137, A. F. & A. M (, accessed October 3, 2006. Family Search, "Samuel Mather" (, accessed October 3, 2006. Paper Manufacturing and Paper Shortages in the South, 1861–1865, Austin Gazette, September 30, 1863 (, accessed October 3, 2006. Charles E. Spellman, ed., The Texas House of Representatives: A Pictorial Roster, 1846–1992 (Austin: Texas House of Representatives, 1992). Postmasters & Post Offices of Williamson County, Texas 1849–1930 (, accessed October 3, 2006.
  • Ninth Legislature (1861-1863)
  • House

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

Stephanie P. Niemeyer, “Mather, Samuel E.,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed June 29, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

September 22, 2008