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Simeon Hart

Simeon Hart first came to the Southwest with the Missouri Cavalry Unit in 1848. In 1849 he moved to the Pass of the North with his new bride, Jesusita Siquieros of Chihuahua. There he established his flour mill, El Molino. Several years later, he built a large, luxurious residence that served as a haven for travelers to the area. The building still stands as it did then; it is now La Hacienda Cafť, a popular restaurant in El Paso.

Hart signed several contracts with the U.S. Army that made him very wealthy; in the census of 1860 he was the wealthiest man in the area. He served as county judge from 1852 - 1854.

During the Civil War Hart was pro-South and a secessionist. Because of they were against secession, Anson Mills and his brother William were bitter enemies of Hart. In fact, at one point Hart was responsible for W.W. Millsís incarceration. The two men had fierce battles both in and out of the courtroom over the rights to Hartís property, which was sold after the Civil War because Hart was a Union sympathizer. The struggle ended in 1873 when the Mills brothers accepted a payment of $10 for the property. Hart died in 1874, and was buried in an unmarked grave.

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extended activity
Imagine that Simeon Hart came back to his old home at La Hacienda and was acting as a tour guide. What kinds of stories would he tell? Be creative.

Related Links:

Texas Handbook
http://www.tsha.utexas.edu/handbook/online/articles/view/CC/fca49.html

San Angelo Standard-Times history article
http://www.lahaciendarestaurant.com/history.htm

Read More, Learn More:

Broaddus, J. Morgan. 1963. The Legal Heritage of El Paso El Paso: Texas Western College Press.

Strickland, Rex W. 1963. Six Who Came to El Paso: Pioneers of the 1840's El Paso: Texas Western College Press.