Part 7, Note 57

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Letter of Benjamin F. Williams, November 7, 1867, Records of the Office of Civil Affairs for the Department of Texas and the Fifth Military District, 1865-1870, U. S. Department of War, Records of the United States Army Continental Commands (RG 393), National Archives, Washington, D. C.; Notes from sub-assistant commissioner's field records: Letters of Enon M. Harris, July 15, 1867, July 22, 1867, July 29, 1867, August 5, 1867, August 12, 1867, August 19, 1867, August 23, 1867, August 26, 1867, September 2, 1867, Barry A. Crouch Collection (Ms. 41), Archives of the Nesbitt Memorial Library, Columbus; Election Returns, 1868, Colorado County, Texas, Records of the Secretary of State (RG 307), Archives and Records Division, Texas State Library, Austin; Columbus Times, June 6, 1868. Happily, the February 1868 vote totals were broken down by race. The totals for the black voters were: for the convention 999, against the convention 0, Foster 994, Williams 921, Leyendecker 77, Boettcher 5. The totals for the white voters were: for the convention 85, against the convention 64, Foster 7, Williams 3, Leyendecker 151, Boettcher 145. Foster, the candidate who got the most votes, has not been definitely identified. Men named Henry Foster appeared on both the 1860 and 1870 censuses of Colorado County. The 1860 Henry Foster was a white, 22 year old farmer who had been born in Texas. He enlisted in a Confederate infantry unit on June 1, 1862, but seems to have spent most of the war absent with an illness. He finally was declared absent without leave on August 31, 1863, after which no further record of him has been found. The 1870 Henry Foster was a black, 22 year old farm laborer. Neither man seems likely to be the man elected as a delegate to the constitutional convention in 1868 (see Eighth Census of the United States (1860), Colorado County, Texas, Schedule 1; Ninth Census of the United States (1870), Colorado County, Texas, Schedule 1; a synopsis of the 1860 Henry Foster's military record can be found in Bill Stein, "Consider the Lily: The Ungilded History of Colorado County," part 6, Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, vol. 7, no. 2, May 1997, p. 120).