Recently, I ventured into plotting my second western historical novella titled, Matelyn and the Texas Ranger. The story takes place in Texas around 1875. So while planning how I would put my heroine through h-e-double hockey sticks, I discovered something that I'd bet most Texans don't know. There was another devastating hurricane before the 1900 Galveston strike.
The name of the town was Indianola and it was a major Texas port. In 1853, it had been relocated to Matagorda Bay and Powderhorn Bayou to take advantage of deeper waters.The steamships of Morgan Lines could easily navigate these waters making them able to enter the bay through Pass Cavallo and sail to Indianola in a few hours.
The relocation, however, made the town more vulnerable to rising waters and storm surges from tropical storms and hurricanes. It also meant the road leading out of the town would've been submerged making it impossible for the residents to escape. They would've been forced to ride out the storm in their homes only a few feet above sea level.
The hurricane of September 1875 inflicted extensive damage and loss of life. Approximately 300 people were killed and nearly three-quarters of the town's buildings were destroyed. Unwilling to concede to the forces of nature, the locals only partially rebuilt the town. A mere eleven years later, in August of 1886, another hurricane wreaked havoc to this area of the Texas Coast and finally brought to an end this once prosperous frontier seaport. Below is what's left of Indianola today.
I guess you can tell how my heroine, Matelyn O'Donnell, arrived in Texas. Now she has to make her way to North Central Texas. Wish her luck.
My western historical romance novella I told you about last month, Katie and the Irish Texan, is now on Amazon. I hope you'll give it a read and let me know what you think.
Katie and the Irish Texan
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