Details for Houston, Margaret Moffette Lea (Atlas Number 5507014506)

Historical Marker — Atlas Number 5507014506


Marker Number 14506
Atlas Number 5507014506
Marker Title Houston, Margaret Moffette Lea
Index Entry Houston, Margaret Moffette Lea
Address 1836 Sam Houston Ave.
City Huntsville
County Walker
UTM Zone 15
UTM Easting 255551
UTM Northing 3400607
Subject Codes women, women's history topics; Texas Revolution, Republic of Texas
Marker Year 2008
Marker Location 1836 Sam Houston Ave.
Marker Size 27" x 42"
Marker Text (April 11, 1819-December 3, 1867)Margaret Moffette Lea was born on her family's farm in Pleasant Valley, near Marion, Alabama. She graduated from Judson Female Institute in Marion in 1837, and in 1839 she met General Sam Houston. Houston, who had completed his term as the first President of the Republic of Texas, was visiting Alabama for business ventures. Despite their 26-year age difference, the two married in 1840. During their marriage, Margaret was successful in curbing the General's use of alcohol and in encouranging him to become a dedicated church member.The Houstons owned residences in Houston City and in Cedar Point. In 1841, Gen. Houston was elected to his second term as President of the Republic of Texas. For the first time, Texas had a First Lady, as Margaret joined her husband at the temporary capital of Washington-on-the-Brazos. During the presidency, the couple had the first of their eight children. After the term, the Houston family moved to a plantation they named Raven Hill (14 mi. E). While her husband later served a s a U.S Senator, Margaret Houston managed the plantation and participated in church, social and literary activities. She also underwent surgery and treatment for breast cancer.The family later lived in Huntsville at their Woodland home and in Independence. Margaret Houston continued to raise her family and, when General Houston became Governor, again served as First Lady. The couple later moved to the Steamboat House in Huntsville. After her husband died in 1863, Margaret Houston returned to Independence, where she provided for her children until her death from yellow fever in 1867. Today, Margaret Moffette Lea Houston is remembered as a First Lady and the matriarch of one of the most significant families in Texas history. (2008)