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Sunday, June 21, 2015

1877 :: A Prosperous City

Rockdale - A Statesman Attache Takes a Glimpse at the Place and Some of its Business Men.

Weekly Democratic Statesman

Austin, Texas
Thursday, June 21, 1877

Rockdale, Texas, for a long time the terminus of the International and Great Northern Railroad, is a prosperous city of nearly two thousand inhabitants and is the shipping point for most of the cotton and other produce raised in Cameron and the adjoining counties.

A representative of this paper spent a very pleasant as well as a profitable day, last week, in this pretty little city, and was astonished at the amount of business done, as well as the large stocks carried by the merchants.

Everybody looked happy, and the prospects for trade were never better.

We will only mention a few of the principal merchants and business men and do up the rest at some future time.

Rockdale has only one bank, under the firm name of J.S. Perry & Co. The business is managed by Mr. E.E. Wynne. This firm does a general banking and exchange business and is reliable.

H.P. Hale & Co. carry a full stock of general merchandise under the management of Mr. E.M. Scarbrough.

Mr. H. Goldsticker, the wholesale and retail dealer in liquors, cigars and tobacco, can be found on the corner of Main and Cameron streets, and he is always pleased to serve his friends with the best of whisky, wine and lager beer.

Mr. John Redding is the largest saddle and harness dealer.

The firm of Giles & Wolf keeps a large stock of hardware, stoves and tinware; they sell as low as the lowest.

Mr. J.O. Sitman carries a stock of groceries that will please those wanting good and fresh goods at living prices.

The Grangers run a grocery and feed store on the corner of Main and Milam streets, opposite the depot. Mr. J.A. Hargrove is in charge and assisted by the "Louisiana tiger." This house is very popular.

Mr. Solon Joynes, the commission merchant, deals very largely in all kinds of farm and mill machinery. He also buys produce, paying the best prices.

Isaacs & Coffield are wholesale and retail druggists, and have a well selected stock of goods.

The Osborne Brothers run the lumber yard near the depot.

W. Max & Co. are now the owners and proprietors of the Max House and restaurant. Mr. George B. Randle, late of Austin, is in charge, and knows how to keep a hotel. The table will compare with the best in Texas. "Slim Jim" is the chief cook, if not bottle washer, and does things up in brown style.

J.J. Mosely keeps a first-class livery and feed stable, and fits people out either for the city or country.

Messrs Witcher & Co., retail liquor dealers, carry a full stock and do a live business.

Mr. A. Kaiser does the leading business in clothing, dry goods, boots, shoes, etc.

Dr. W.A. Brooks is the proprietor of the "Brooks House." His rooms are good and the table first-class.

M.L. Kritser's livery and feed stable and wagon yard are convenient to the Max House. He carries on an open and shut game; that is, he opens to many customers, treats them well, and shuts down on much filthy lucre.

Mrs. E.S. Lapper [sic, i.e., Loper] presides over Rockdale's most fashionable millinery and dressmaking establishment, and puts to shame many city emporiums.

Only one paper -- a wonder to be told -- is published in Rockdale. Mr. Enoch Breeding is publisher of the Messenger, and he makes it a live, newsy paper.

The leading physician of the city is Dr. A.C. Walker, who is besides a pleasant gentleman.

Rockdale has passed through the period that distinguishes new railroad towns, and is now as quiet and law-abiding a place as any in Texas. This fact is to be attributed both to the character of its citizens and the excellent administration of Hon. F.A. Hill, its mayor.

Once in a while some one of the Statesman will take Rockdale in, and its resources and progress will be more extendedly noticed.

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