TWOHIG, JOHN (1806–1891). John Twohig, San Antonio merchant and banker, was born in Cork County, Ireland, in April 1806. After serving as an apprentice on a British merchant vessel and engaging in coastwise trade between New Orleans and Boston, he established a mercantile business in San Antonio, Texas, in 1830 and took part in the siege of Bexar in 1835. At the time of the Adrián Woll invasion of San Antonio in September 1842, Twohig blew up his store to keep ammunition from the enemy. Captured and taken to Mexico, he and fourteen other San Antonians held in Perote Prison cut a tunnel and effected their escape on July 2, 1843; Twohig was one of nine not recaptured. He returned to San Antonio, became a banker, and was widely known for his breadline for the unfortunate. This breadline, which he financed personally, was continued by his sister for several years after his death. In April 1853 Twohig married Bettie Calvert of Seguin. In the years prior to the Civil War he amassed a large personal fortune. His banking business declined because of the effects of the war, but soon recovered. In 1870 Twohig was among the 100 wealthiest men in Texas, with real property estimated at $90,000 and personal property worth an additional $50,000. He died at his home in San Antonio in October 1891.
Gussie Scott Chaney, The Breadline Banker of St. Mary's Street (San Antonio Public Service Company, 1936). Telegraph and Texas Register, January 25, 1843. Texas State Gazette, May 7, 1853. John Twohig Papers, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin. Ralph A. Wooster, "Wealthy Texans, 1870," Southwestern Historical Quarterly 74 (July 1970).
Image Use Disclaimer
All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.
For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.Handbook of Texas Online, Erma Baker, "Twohig, John," accessed February 14, 2016, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/ftw04.
Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Get Texas history everyday,
with day by day
Each day's email tells a little bit more of the story of Texas and links to our collection of more than 27,000 articles