Writer Mary Austin Holley introduced English-speaking readers of the 1830s and '40s to Texas, which she called a land of "surpassing beauty . . . a splendid country." She visited Texas in 1831, and several times over the next twelve years, with plans to settle there. Sadly, she died of yellow fever in 1846 and never settled in the place that had captured her heart, but her work provides invaluable accounts of life in early Texas. Read more about Holley and listen to the episode of Texas Originals that aired on KUHF, Houston Public Radio, on November 10, 2012. More»

Portrait of Mary Austin Holley. Frontispiece illustration from Letters of an Early American Traveller, Mary Austin Holley, 1784–1846.