"Negro Riot at Millican" July 25, 1868


"Negro Riot at Millican" July 25, 1868




"Negro Riot at Millican", Dallas Herald [Dallas, Tx] 25 July 1868: 2.


Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers


Dallas Herald


July 25, 1868


Taylor Smith




Newspaper Article


The Negro Riot at Millican
The Houston Telegraph of the 17th gives the following particulars of a serious riot which occurred at Millican, Brazos County:
Information has just reached us of a serious disturbance at Millican between the whites and blacks. From passengers on the train we learn that it had its origin in a charge made against a young man named Holliday of having assisted in the hanging of a negro recently in the Brazos bottom. Holliday denied the charge, and said that the negro, who it was asserted had been killed, was alive in Washington county, and offered to produce him. This, it seems, was not satisfactory to the nergroes who assembled in force yesterday afternoon and marched through Millican fully armed. The Deputy Sheriff at once called out a posse of twenty men and went in pursuit. A short distance from town the Sheriff’s party met the negroes returning. The negroes immediately formed a line and commenced firing upon the sheriff’s party when the latter returned the fire and charged, killing five of the blacks, wounding several others, and completely routing the party. The sheriff then sent to others, and completely routing the party. The sheriff then sent to Navasota and Bryan for assistance. Last night a train came down from Bryan with about 75 men. On their arrival at Millican, the nergroes made peace overtures to the whites, and agreed to let the matter rest, whereupon the train returned to Bryan with the greater portion of the men who came down upon it. Thus matters stood during the night, but about 4 o’clock this morning the nergroes were assembled in large numbers at Freedmansville, near Millican, and when the passenger train arrived from Bryan, another conflict appeared to be imminent. During the night Millican was surrounded by white pickets and the nergroes were encamped in and around Freedmansville to the number of several hundred. Two of the latter attempting to pass the picket lines extending around the town were fired upon and one of them killed. It is said that a prominent Loyal Leaguer visited the nergro camp this morning and attempted to conciliate them, but was driven away. The negroes are headed by a man named Brooks, who declared his intention to have revenge for the killing of the men by the Sheriff’s party yesterday.
The Central Railroad freight train was seized by the Sheriff of Brazos county, on its way down and turned back to Bryan for help. The rioters are said to number two or three hundred negroes, and positively refuse to disperse. One hundred and fifty persons left Bryan on the 16th for the scene of troubles. The number of negroes killed in the first affair is estimated at fifteen. Col J.P. Austin, from Bryan informs the Telegraph that the Agent of the Freedmen’s Bureau at Bryan, came down from there to Millican night before last with about 150 men, to inquire into the disturbance; that he did so, and found about 300 negroes in array; that he went out to them under a white flag and demanded their surrender to the civil authorities, but was driven off; that be then put himself at the head of the whites, declaring that he would arrest them by force, and the Sheriff and whites were acting under him, and that the fighting of yesterday must have been under his command.
The number of negroes killed during the rioting was about 25.
The negroes almost three to five hundred strong are fortifying themselves three miles from Millican. Excitement prevails for several miles around. Every effort has been made to conciliate them, but to no effect. Captain Randett. Sub Assistant Commissioner Freedmen’s Bureau, has done all in his power but his efforts have been spurned and they refuse to lay down their arms.
Late advices state that about twenty Federal soldiers had arrived at the scene of the riot: that they rioters have dispersed and gone to their homes with the exception of the negro Brooks, the leader of the mob, and a small escort who are believed to have gone to Austin.
It is now ascertained that the difficulty arose from the supposition that negro member of the loyal league had been hung: but he has since been found. These Loyal Leaguers have been drilling and prowling around Millican for a period of a month, directly against the orders of Capt. Randett, commissioner of the Breedman’s Bureau.
The latest dispatch say:
Houston, July 17th- 8pm- the Millican insurrection is substantially quelled. The main body of the negroes has dispersed, leaving Brooks and yellow adjutant with a small squad roaming at large. A sufficient force is in pursuit. Three negroes were killed last night by Federal pickets. The Federal soldiery were hostile to the mob, but were restrained from attacking by the Captain, who said he went to pacify and not to fight.
The railroad is clear and trains running regularly. The weather is very hot.




“"Negro Riot at Millican" July 25, 1868,” Millican "Riot," 1868, accessed May 13, 2021, https://millican.omeka.net/items/show/171.