George Henry. Sweet, newspaperman and soldier, was born in Ulster County, New York, on November 28, 1830, the son of Walter and Mary M. Sweet. He was a Mexican War veteran having served as a private in the regular army and he was apparently well-educated. On September 7, 1859, he married Lizzie Thompson of San Antonio. He would marry twice more, first to Fannie Vaughn, then to Lena Geering Ross. In 1860 he replaced James Pearson Newcomb as editor of the San Antonio Herald.
In the early days of the Civil War Sweet enlisted as a private in Company F, Fourth Texas Infantry, and served with the Texas Brigade in Virginia. Sweet was elected captain of Company A, Fifteenth Texas Cavalry, on January 1, 1862, and was elected colonel on March 10. Sweet's regiment marched to Arkansas in the summer of 1862 and was dismounted to serve as infantry on July 24. Sweet and most of his men were captured at Arkansas Post on January 11, 1863. Described by a fellow soldier as a “proud, vain and very sensitive man,” Sweet was exchanged in the spring of 1863 and was sent to the Trans-Mississippi Department in the fall to collect the men of his regiment who had escaped from Arkansas Post. In the fall of 1864 he was the commander of Camp Ford, the Confederate prison at Tyler.
In the summer of 1866 Sweet made a trip through Mexico and kept a travel diary. In 1871 Sweet published an immigrant's handbook, Texas: Her Early History, Climate, Soil, and Material Resources. In that same year he became publisher of the Texas New Yorker, a monthly magazine published in New York and designed to promote investment in and immigration to Texas. Sweet continued this journal until 1878, when he moved to Galveston and became the publisher of the Galveston Journal. He sold the Galveston paper in December 1881. In 1885 he returned to his native New York, where he lived on his savings. Sweet died at his home in Linden, New Jersey, on August 7, 1912. He is buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Brooklyn, New York.
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Bruce S. Allardice, Confederate Colonels: A Biographical Register (Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 2008). R. M. Collins, Chapters From the Unwritten History of the War between the States (St. Louis: Nixon-Jones, 1893; rpt., Dayton, Ohio: Morningside Bookshop, 1982). Dallas Herald, May 24, 1862. F. Lee Lawrence and Robert W. Glover, Camp Ford, C.S.A.: The Story of Union Prisoners in Texas (Austin: Texas Civil War Centennial Advisory Committee, 1964). San Antonio Daily Herald, May 24, 1862. Marilyn M. Sibley, Lone Stars and State Gazettes: Texas Newspapers before the Civil War (College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 1983). George H. Sweet, Notes of Travel Made by George H. Sweet of San Antonio (MS, Texas State Archives, Austin).
Editors and Reporters
Publishers and Executives
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.
“Sweet, George Henry,”
Handbook of Texas Online,
accessed June 26, 2022,
Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Original Publication Date:
Most Recent Revision Date:
July 28, 2011
This entry belongs to the following Handbook Special Projects: