Thomas W. Mitchell
Nov. 4, 1896
Aged 65 years
Photo Credit: Rosa G. Gonzales
The simply stone marking the resting place of the remains of Thomas W. Mitchell only records his death date as 4 November 1896 at the age of 65 years (thus born about 1831). The early death records of Corpus Christi (page 94 #1368) record that he died of "apoplexy" (the usual term for a stroke). During the early 1890s there is a T. W. Mitchell who is referred to in numerous articles from the paper. He is usually listed as the deputy collector of customs under C. G. Brewster and a clerk under Sam Johnson. In May of 1890, for instance, he advertised in the local paper that he had four gallons of mescal and a mule for sale. They had been seized for violation of revenue laws and put up for sale at public auction (May 31, 1890 quoted in Caller-Times of June 1, 1930, Section 2, page 6). In December of 1890 he is praised along with his assistant for his efficiency. At that time Brewster is in charge as Collector of Customs for the area of south Texas (quoted in 28 December 1930 Caller-Times, Section 2, page 2). Presumably after he was retired or replaced in his office (as often happened in those days due to a change of federal administrations) he is listed as the new general manager of the new Hardware Firm of N. Gussett which had formerly been the J. B. Mitchell company (quoted in Caller-Times, 13 May 1934, page 13). It would later be purchased by Bluntzer and Robertson. It is Eli T. Merriman in an article on the old Customs House who states that the collector of customs after Plato was Sam Johnson and that T. W. Mitchell was one of his clerks. He states that "after four years the republicans, winning in the national election, more changes were made. Col. Brewster was appointed as the new collector. Mr. Mitchell was re-appointed special deputy collector under Brewster." (Caller-Times Nov. 1931).
Research and transcription: Michael A. Howell