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CULLEN, EZEKIEL WIMBERLY

CULLEN, EZEKIEL WIMBERLY (1814–1882). Ezekiel Wimberly Cullen, early legislator, jurist, and lawyer, was born in 1814. He moved from Georgia to Texas in 1835 and settled at San Augustine, where he established a law practice. In 1835 he joined the Texas revolutionary forces and participated in the siege of Bexar. While representing San Augustine County in the House of Representatives of the Third Congress of the republic (1838–39), where he was chairman of the education committee, he sponsored the Cullen Act, which started land endowments for public schools and universities, thus laying the basis for an eventual Texas public-education system. In 1839 President Mirabeau B. Lamar appointed Cullen to judgeship of the First District, vacant after the death of Shelby Corzine. Cullen practiced law in San Augustine until 1850, when he was appointed purser in the United States Navy. He lived for a time in Pensacola, Florida, and later in Washington, D.C. He returned to Texas in 1871 and opened a law office in Dallas, where he lived until his death in 1882. Noted oilman and philanthropist Hugh Roy Cullen was his grandson. The Ezekiel Cullen Building on the University of Houston campus, constructed in 1950, was named in his honor.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 
Hall of Remembrance: The Heroes and Heroines of Texas Education (Dallas: Texas Heritage Foundation, 1954). Texas House of Representatives, Biographical Directory of the Texan Conventions and Congresses, 1832–1845 (Austin: Book Exchange, 1941). Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.
Christopher Long

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

Handbook of Texas Online, Christopher Long, "Cullen, Ezekiel Wimberly," accessed September 26, 2016, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fcu05.

Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.