MATTHEWS, JOHN (1796–1861). John Matthews was born in Campbell County, Virginia, in 1796, moved to Texas around the time of the Texas Revolution, and settled in Jackson County. In 1837 he moved to the east side of the Colorado River in southern Colorado County, where he bought lands granted to James Nelson in 1824. His first home was built in the riverbottom, but frequent flooding drove him to a higher site that became known as Matthews Prairie. His new home was built by slave labor with cypress lumber brought by ship from Florida to Columbia on the Brazos River and then hauled overland by ox-drawn wagons. The 1840 tax records credit Matthews with 2,222 acres and seventeen slaves. The 1850 census valued his property at $10,000 and showed ownership of fifteen slaves. As his holdings increased, a community named Matthews developed in the area around the plantation, and by 1860 his total property, including 140 slaves, was valued at $225,000. That year he produced 10,000 bushels of corn and 589 bales of cotton on 800 acres of improved land. Matthews never married. In January 1861, when he became ill, his brother Nathaniel took him back to Virginia for care. Before leaving Texas John deeded the entire plantation to his brother who, in turn, passed it to his children. John Matthews died in Virginia in 1861.
Colorado County Sesquicentennial Commemorative Book (La Grange, Texas: Hengst Printing, 1986).
Image Use Disclaimer
All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.
For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.Handbook of Texas Online, Jeff Carroll, "Matthews, John," accessed March 28, 2017, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fmaaq.
Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Modified on October 24, 2013. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.