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Commemorative plaque - Jefferson

200 block of West Austin
Jefferson (Texas, United States)
Geographic coordinates : 32.7584,-94.3444
Commemorative plaque (Local or national famous person)

Captain William Perry. (April 5, 1813 - January 2, 1869) William Perry was among the first settlers of Jefferson, arriving ca. 1840. Through his shipping business and his work in dredging a turning basin for ships in the Big Cypress Bayou, he played a significant role in the early growth and development of Jefferson as an inland port. He bought and developed large tracts of land in the area, becoming quite wealthy in the process. After traveling to California during the late 1840s gold rush, Perry returned to Jefferson and built a home at the corner of Polk and Clarksville streets for his wife Sardinia (1826-1912) and their children. The home was later moved to 203 Clarksville Street and incorporated with another structure. In addition to his real estate dealings and shipping interest, Perry owned a hotel which is now a part of the historic Excelsior House. A respected community leader, he served as mayor of Jefferson from 1863 to 1864. On January 2, 1869, Perry was fatally shot while walking home after midnight. William Perry and his wife, along with other family members, are buried in Jefferson's Oakwood Cemetery. #8076