Granddad Goes to Washington…well, almost

Once again, please welcome my grandfather, G.M.C. Massey as a guest blogger with another memoir excerpt.

Gordon J. Russell

Gordon J. Russell, Texas Representative, U.S. Judge

Back in east Texas, in 1910, I was living in the THIRD Congressional District and Gordon Russell, Was the representative of that District, And he was appointed to the Federal Judgeship of a certain location in the north East Texas, And his place as representative of that district was made vacant By His appointment to the Federal Judgeship. And there in the middle of summer, When I found out that it would be open to aspirants for the place to fill the vacancy by Election, Instead of appointment; I got into the race for the unexpired term, And when I did it was only Six days till the election, and there were about six counties in the district, And I was only known as a teacher and then in only about three counties. And then there were practically no mode of travel that you could depend upon to get you to a place for an Appointment except Train “practically no buses at that time,” and the use of private conveyance: So I started out on this campaign by getting a neighbor to drive one of my mules to an open topped buggy to Quitman, here I made my formal announcement in the weekly Paper, and ordered my name to go on the Ballot for the Election; and on leaving home I left My wife strictly under the care of Our Family Physician Dr. P.M. Eaks and had him informed of my whereabouts each night.

Texas Attorney General Robert Vance Davidson

Texas Att’y. Gen. Robert Vance Davidson

So I went on my Trusting in the Lord and a mighty good Physician, And I very well covered the Territory that I was not acquainted with in that short time as well as could be expected for the time and the mode of travel. And on the night of the 14th of July I was at Gilmer, And I had found out that Robert Vance Davidson, The attorney General of the state of Texas, that was making the race for Governor of Texas WAS going to speak at the courthouse at Nine O’clock on the morning of the 15th. So I arranged to be there at the time; so that I could get to speak at the end of his speech, to all that would remain to hear me. But before I got my Breakfast that Morning I had a long distance call from Dr. Eaks, informing me that I was the Father of another fine young man, Who was born to me in the early hours of the day.

Well I cut my speech that morning to as short Speech as I could, so that I could get the same train that Davidson would get to his next appointment, At Pritchett from the back of the coach, and the train held up for me a few minutes so I could keep up with him at Big Sandy, But at Big Sandy I got off and I had plenty of time as the Train went on that Carried Davidson to TYLER, and my next stop was at Mineola and my train from Big Sandy to Mineola was an hour off. So I met a lot of people here after my speech, and was very well received and applauded So that I felt fine over my prospect: for several that were there was people that knew me and recommended me to those of their friends that was there.

Then when I got to Mineola That night there was a Reunion going on and I got to the stage and got permission for an announcement, And got in a very good small after supper announcement, and at the first Opportunity I went on up to Quitman as I had promised the Dr. that I would, and he had that neighbor that carried me off at the start to come down to Quitman to get me, and I made a talk after I got home down at the Store and P.O., And we had to wait till the papers come out on Monday to find out what the result was, And we found out that I was Second on the list.

The county Judge of Vanzandt co, had nosed me out. Of course if things were not as they are we do not know just how they would be, But I promised the People in every speech that I made that if I was elected that I would be a contender for a regular term in the future. You see the reason that the Election was put off so long; was that the people reasoned that the man that was nominated in the primary for the regular term, Would be appointed to the rest of the unexpired term and the matter when it was settled we had such a short time for the Election, that a man that was not widely known did not stand a chance. And as I was not successful in that game I did not feel that I had made a promise to the people of another Race at any time, And being bound up as I was with lack of means, I always felt that my case would be almost fruitless without backing, that I felt that I did not have.

And as to any other Ambitions that I might have had along a political line was also a matter that my family was more concerned in than I was: For I had a responsibility to them that I could not ignore.


About bullersbackporch

I am a native Austinite, a high-tech Luddite, lover of music, movies and stories and a born trainer-explainer.
This entry was posted in Buller, Family, G.M.C. Massey, politics, Texas and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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