Young, Charles G. (1816–1871)

Revised by: Randolph B. "Mike" Campbell

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: April 18, 2019

Charles Glidden Young, businessman and railroad promoter, was born in Grafton, New Hampshire, on April 7, 1816. He was the son of Daniel and Mary (Glidden) Young. He graduated from Philadelphia College and in 1838 moved to Louisiana. In 1842 he married Mary Louisa Chamberlain, possibly in Hamilton, Ohio. In 1850 he lived in Greenwood, Caddo Parish. He became president of the Vicksburg and Shreveport Railroad Company, but when work was interrupted by the fall of Vicksburg in 1863, he moved his family and slaves to Texas. He lived briefly at Chapel Hill but soon moved to Cherokee County and set up a foundry six miles south of Jacksonville. In addition to the foundry, Young operated a sawmill, brickyard, and store, which he supplied by wagon train from Galveston and Matamoros. Emancipation at the end of the Civil War freed Young’s labor force and forced him to close the foundry. Young relocated to Rusk in Cherokee County and soon played a major role as a director in chartering the Houston and Great Northern Railroad Company in 1866. On June 1, 1867, he became president of the company that planned to build from Houston north to Clarksville on Red River where it would connect with the Memphis and El Paso Railroad. Construction began in 1870, and on August 9, 1871, Young was killed in a derailment accident while inspecting the first completed section of road near Houston. Young and his wife Mary had a family of six children in 1870.

Dallas Morning News, December 7, 1924. Vera Lea Dugas, "Texas Industry, 1860–1880," Southwestern Historical Quarterly 59 (October 1955). Houston Daily Telegraph, August 24, 1871. S. G. Reed, A History of the Texas Railroads (Houston: St. Clair, 1941; rpt., New York: Arno, 1981).

  • Business
Time Periods:
  • Late Nineteenth-Century Texas

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

Revised by Randolph B. "Mike" Campbell, “Young, Charles G.,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed August 15, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

April 18, 2019