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PEASE, LUCADIA CHRISTIANA NILES

Elizabeth Whitlow

An updated version of this entry will be available following the forthcoming publication of the double biography of E. M. and Lucadia N. Pease.

Lucadia Pease, hand-painted tintype portrait (circa 1860s)
Lucadia Pease, hand-painted tintype portrait (circa 1860s). Courtesy of the Austin History Center. Image available on the Internet and included in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107.
Portrait of Elisha Marshall Pease
Portrait of Elisha Marshall Pease. Image courtesy of the Texas State Library and Archives CommissionImage available on the Internet and included in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107.

PEASE, LUCADIA CHRISTIANA NILES (1813–1905). Lucadia Christiana Niles Pease, wife of Texas governor E. M. Pease, was born on June 25, 1813, in Windsor, Connecticut, to Col. Richard Niles and Christiana (Griswold) Niles. Lucadia Niles and E. M. Pease, both from Hartford County, Connecticut, were cousins through the Marshall family. He came to Texas in 1835, and, after service to the provisional government and the Republic of Texas, he began practicing law in Brazoria; he represented Brazoria County in the first three Texas legislatures. While he was in Connecticut visiting his family in 1848, Pease proposed to Lucadia Niles. They married on August 22, 1850, in Poquonock, arrived in Galveston on November 12, and subsequently established a home in Brazoria. Although the small town was the seat of Brazoria County, Lucadia regarded Brazoria as “a backwoods” and “dull” when she arrived and did not recognize the economic value of the rich soil of the area. Their first two children were born there: Carrie Augusta in 1851 and Julia Maria in 1853. The family moved to Austin in December 1853, when Pease was elected governor. The couple’s third child, Anne Marshall, was born there in 1854. The family moved into the Governor’s Mansion when it was completed in June 1856 and lived there until the end of his second term in December 1857.

In 1859 the former governor bought a home west of Austin from James B. Shaw. The Peases named the large elegant house, its working farm, and vast surrounding wooded acres “Wood Lawn.” As Unionists, the Peases risked staying there during the Civil War. Before and after the war, Wood Lawn (family letters later used the spelling of Woodlawn) served as the center of the family’s hospitality, offered to innumerable people from the city, state, and nation who had interests in politics, civic affairs, artistic endeavors, and more. After the governor’s death in 1883, Lucadia Pease continued to live at Woodlawn with her daughter Julie and the three surviving children of Lucadia’s late elder daughter, Carrie P. Graham. Lucadia Christiana Niles Pease passed away at home on January 23, 1905, after having broken a hip. She was reported to have had a “natural cheerfulness . . . up to the very last,” and was called “one of Austin’s oldest and best beloved citizens.” She was buried next to her husband in the Pease family plot at the Austin City Cemetery (Oakwood Cemetery).  

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Lucadia Christiana Niles Pease, Find A Grave Memorial (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/66738620/lucadia-christiana-pease), accessed December 4, 2019. Pease, Graham, and Niles Families Papers, Austin History Center, Austin Public Library.

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Citation

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Handbook of Texas Online, Elizabeth Whitlow, "PEASE, LUCADIA CHRISTIANA NILES ," accessed May 27, 2020, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fpe61.

Uploaded on December 10, 2019. Modified on March 5, 2020. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
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