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WOOD, DAVID L. (?–?). David L. Wood, early settler and newspaperman, lived in Pennsylvania and Illinois before moving to Texas, but little else is known regarding his early life. In the late 1830s he settled in what became Fort Bend County. He founded the Richmond Telescope, which was published from April 27, 1839, until sometime in 1840. In June 1839 Wood served on a committee chaired by Wyly Martin to discuss the routing of railroads through the county. Wood married the daughter of William Primm of Fayette County. In 1841 Wood was charged with the crime of miscegenation. Mrs. Wood was apparently white in appearance, but her father testified that she was born a slave and legally remained one. Wood later petitioned Congress to legalize his marriage, lest he be forced by the "spirit of persecution to seek a home with his wife in a foreign land." It is unclear if Congress honored his request, but probable that it did not, since shortly thereafter Wood disappears from Texas records, and it seems that Wood and his wife left the state.


Douglas C. McMurtrie, "Pioneer Printing in Texas," Southwestern Historical Quarterly 35 (January 1932). Harold Schoen, "The Free Negro in the Republic of Texas," Southwestern Historical Quarterly 39–41 (April 1936-July 1937). Telegraph and Texas Register, June 12, 1839.

Stephen L. Hardin


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

Stephen L. Hardin, "WOOD, DAVID L.," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed November 28, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.