My Master

The Inside Story of Sam Houston and His Times

978-1-933337-23-4 Paperback
6 x 9. 176 pp. 12 B&W Photos; 1 Diagram; 1 Drawing; 2 Documents; Bibliography; Notes; Index.
Pub Date: 09/17/2007
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Jeff Hamilton, only thirteen when purchased in 1853 by Sam Houston at a slave auction in Huntsville, Texas, was Houston's personal body servant during the period Houston was U.S. Senator, during both governorships, and was with Houston at his death. Originally published in 1940 shortly before Hamilton died at age 100, these memoirs contain Hamilton's fascinating and intimate viewpoints of the important issues during the last years of Houston's life.

Aware of Hamilton's narrative abilities and of the historical importance of his first-hand accounts of one of our nation's most prominent figures, the 1936 Centennial Association of Texas commissioned Lenoir Hunt, author of Bluebonnets and Blood to interview Hamilton to "save for posterity his rare recollections . . . one of the very few men now living who passed through the hates and passions of the 1850s and 1860s and who may give us an eyewitness picture of life and conditions in that eventful era." And what a picture! Hamilton saw "most of the meanness as well as the good things that were going on about me. . . . there are not many boys who have the distinction of being whipped by one of the great men of history."

Containing revealing and intimate anecdotes nowhere else published, My Master is a valuable contribution to American folklore and history. In Hamilton, Lenoir Hunt had found "a guileless old soul who could give me from an entirely new angle a simple account of the stirring times in which he lived . . . an aged Boswell anxious to tell the inside story of the colorful empire-maker who had liberated a people and who directly and indirectly had added over a million square miles to the area of the United States."

Published by State House Press