December 27, 1836
Stephen Austin, who became known as the “Father of Texas” and who is shown through historical records to have spent a short time in Arkansas, died in Texas at the age of forty-two in a two-room shack, most likely from pneumonia. Austin had run unsuccessfully for the U.S. Congress from territory that included what is now the state of Arkansas. He had also been appointed by Arkansas territorial governor James Miller to serve as circuit judge. He held that position only two months before moving out of the territory. At the time of his death, however, he had helped carry out his father’s plan to populate Texas with American emigrants and establish a new republic, which later became the state of Texas.