Michael has a BA in History & American Studies and an MSc in American History from the University of Edinburgh. He comes from a proud military family and has spent most of his career as an educator in the Middle East and Asia. His passion is travel, and he seizes any opportunity to share his experiences in the most immersive way possible, whether at sea or on the land.

Texas Independence Trail Region

Markers (click on a topic to jump to that section.)
Custer, Gen. George and Libbie, Campsite | Hempstead, C.S.A. | Liendo | Morgan, Stacye Ann Marlin | Waller County | Waller County Historical Museum
Uncommemorated Sites (click on a topic to jump to that section.)
Camp Groce

Map of Waller County

Custer, Gen. George and Libbie, Campsite

Marker Title: Gen. George and Libbie Custer Campsite
Address: 2 mi. E of Hempstead on FM 1488, then .25 mi. S on Wyatt Chapel Rd.
City: Hempstead vicinity
County: Waller
Year Marker Erected: 1995
Marker Location: 2 mi. E of Hempstead on FM 1488, then .25 mi. S on Wyatt Chapel Rd., Hempstead vicinity.
Marker Text: Soon after the Civil War General George Armstrong Custer and his cavalry unit arrived in Texas as part of a large U.S. force sent to establish order and counter the threat posed by French-controlled Mexico. From August to October, 1865, Custer, his wife Elizabeth (Libbie), and several U.S. Cavalry units camped here on the Liendo plantation of Leonard W. Groce, heir of "Old 300" settler and cotton baron Jared Groce. The Custers enjoyed warm relations with the Groces and area Texans in part because of his insistence that federal troops treat Texans and their property with respect. Sesquicentennial of Texas Statehood 1845-1995

Hempstead, C.S.A.

Marker Title: Hempstead, C.S.A.
Address: Waller County Courthouse grounds, SH 6 and 12th St.
City: Hempstead
County: Waller
Year Marker Erected: 1963
Marker Location: Waller County Courthouse grounds, SH 6 and 12th St., Hempstead.
Marker Text: Major Civil War center in Texas with railroad, troop training, manufacturing, and supply activity. Training camps Groce and Hebert kept troops in readiness to move by rail to Houston and thence to the coast of Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas to prevent invasion of state. Camp Groce became second largest prisoner of War camp in state receiving first Union prisoners in 1863. Textile mill, foundry, grist mill products supplied to Confederate Army. Field transportation bureau shop made and repaired wagons, saddles, harness. A memorial to Texans who served the Confederacy. Erected by the State of Texas 1963 (back of Hempstead, C.S.S.) Breakup at War's End In the spring of 1865 Texas troops returning from Louisiana and coastal defenses gathered at Camp Groce. Rumor reached them of General Robert E. Lee's surrender at Appomattox. Some doubted, but soon the news was confirmed. Confederate generals Kirby Smith, John B. Magruder, and John H. Forney were there and bade their troops farewell. Comrades-in-arms of the recent conflict left to walk their weary way home in one of the last sad scenes of the southern Confederacy.


Marker Title: Liendo
Address: 5 mi. N on FM 1488 to Wycliff Chapel Rd.
City: Hempstead
County: Waller
Year Marker Erected: 1964
Marker Location: 5 mi. N of Hempstead on FM 1488 to Wycliff Chapel Rd.
Marker Text: 1853 - named for Spanish grantee Justo Leindo, first to own this land. Mansion built by Leonard W. Groce, who surrounded it with model plantation industries. In Civil War, site of Camp Groce, a camp of instruction and then P.O.W. center. Occupied in 1865 by Gen. Geo. W. Custer, later to be a central figure in the Little Big Horn tragedy. Owned, 1873-1911, by family of sculptress Elisabet Ney, commemorated with a marker on grounds. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1964.

Morgan, Stacye Ann Marlin

Marker Title: Stacye Ann Marlin Morgan
County: Waller
Year Marker Erected: 1968
Marker Location: Pattison Cemetery; 1 mile north of Pattison on FM 359.
Marker Text: (Feb. 14, 1819 -- March 23, 1894) Survivor of the famous Morgan Massacre; daughter of settler James Marlin, In Falls County, Jan., 1, 1839, Indians killed and scalped several members of the Morgan and Marlin families. Isaac Marlin, 10, ran 7 miles for help. His sister, Stacye Ann, was severely wounded and left by the Indians for dead. However, she recovered, married William J. Morgan, and brought up a large family. Died in Waller County.

Waller County

Marker Title: Waller County
City: Hempsted
County: Waller
Year Marker Erected: 1936
Marker Location: 1 mile north of Hempsted on Hwy 6 between SH 290 overpasses.
Marker Text: Created from Austin and Grimes Counties, April 28, and organized Aug. 16, 1873. Named for Edwin Waller (1800-1861), a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence, 1836; Postmaster General, Texas Republic; First mayor of Austin. Site of rich 1831-1874 Groce plantations, later home of sculptress Elisabet Ney. Hempsted, founded 1857 during building of Houston & Texas Railroad, an important transportation center, is the county seat. Since 1876, county has been site of Prairie View Agricultural and Mechanical College. Economy is based on industry, diversified agriculture and oil production.

Waller County Historical Museum

Museum Name: Waller County Historical Museum
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 1548
City: Brookshire
Zip Code: 77423
Street Address: 906 Cooper
Area Code: 281
Phone: 934-2826
County: Waller

Camp Groce

Colonel Leonard W. Groce's Liendo plantation stood on Clear Creek two miles east of present-day Hempstead in Waller County. Camp Groce, or Camp Liendo as it was frequently referred to, was probably established in 1862 to house Union soldiers captured by Confederate forces at the Battle of Galveston. Camp Groce served as a recruiting station for the Confederate Army and a refugee center for women and children fleeing southern states. In December of 1864, all of the prisoners at Camp Groce were paroled and the camp was permanently abandoned as a military prison as nearly 500 prisoners were taken to the port of Galveston where they were turned over to Union forces.

Chappell Hill Blood Trail
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