Dr. Henry Patillo Poindexter (1792-1854) and his wife Sarah Paup came to Hempstead County in 1844 from Surry County, North Carolina. In North Carolina, Poindexter had been a member of the North Carolina House of Representatives from Surry County from 1818 to 1820, and in 1840 was in the Senate.
In Arkansas, Poindexter quickly acquired a plantation and, apparently, many friends for only two years after his arrival, he ran for a seat in the Arkansas senate on the Whig ticket and defeated Harvey Y. Smith, the Democratic candidate, by a vote of 400 to 172. He was re-elected again easily in 1848, but in 1850 he had a difficult campaign against the Democratic challenger, Charles B. Mitchel. The difficulty arose due to re-districting which brought in a far greater percentage of Democratic votes from Hempstead and Pike Counties. It was said that Colonel Poindexter “was a man of wonderful tact and address” and only won the election because he was “unfailing in resources.”
Poindexter wrote the letter to Tyre Glen (1800-1875), the son of Thomas Glen (1773-1847) and Ann Speer (1781-1860). Tyre engaged in every conceivable kind of business — land speculation, slave trading, merchandising, whiskey-making, iron mongering — “anything that would make money.” After making a large fortune in business, he bought up much of the surrounding land, and at the death of his father, Tyre bought out the interest of all the other heirs, enlarging his holdings even further. At its peak, his plantation — “Glenwood” — consisted of 6,000 acres and 360 slaves. In addition to cropland his property also had a dam, gristmill, quarry, and a ferry across the Yadkin River, from which he made additional income.
Tyre Glenn married 21 year-old Margaret Bynum in 1837. She was the,daughter of a very prominent North Carolina family. They had 11 children. Following his marriage, Tyre built a very large Greek Revival style mansion house on his land.
Tyre became postmaster at Red Plains, Yadkin Co., N.C. in 1844, and also operated a dry goods store. He also sold liquor, farmed, bought and sold land, and was a subscriber in the Yadkin Navigation Company. He was a member of the home guard, a founding member of the Enon Baptist Church, a man of some education, and held several positions of responsibility in his community. During the Civil War he opposed secession and was nearly hanged as a traitor by Confederate soldiers. His plantation was raided so many times that by war’s end, most of the slaves had fled, and all of his livestock was stolen.
After the war he continued farming and operating his store until his death in 1875. Duke University has the “Tyre Glenn papers” in its special collections, including his personal correspondence, business records, bills of sale for slaves, etc.
Addressed to Tyre Glen, Esqr., Post Master, Red Plains, Surry County, North Carolina
Spring Hill, [Arkansas]
December 28th 1844
I received your letter by last mail and noticed the contents, I had for some time previous intended writing to you whenever I had anything worth your attention to communicate. And first as to the business on which you addressed me I can give you no additional information on the Armstrong matter not before communicated. The agreement took place in Gilman’s Room and it seems to me he would recollect it by his attention being called to the subject. Speak with Mr. Jarratt. He was also present and is interested in the settlement. I certainly wish you to contest the matter with Stipe. He acknowledged the account to Thomas Long sometime before I warranted him as also to myself each article and after I brought suit he admitted he got all the articles in the account before Isaac Church and Solomon Conrad, Esqr.
When I first called on him, he said after looking over the account he remembered getting all the articles but had done some hauling to Fayetteville and back for P___ & Clingman before I became interested in the store but supposed it would make no difference if he took it up in our store as Frank was interested in h____. I told him if he would get and acknowledge that the firm of P____ & Clingman owed him that amount, I would take it and receipt him and he set a day by which he would settle with them and come and see me but the day passed by without his doing so. I then brought a warrant which was returned at Brookstown. He again put off the trial on the same plea of a settlement with Pur____ & Clingman but agreed that Squire Sol Conrad should take the warrant & account and a set day we would appear and habe the matter disposed of. THe evening before I received a letter from him asking farther time and setting a day next week. I accordingly attended at the time. He did not. I handed his letter to Squire Conrad showing him that day had been set by Stipe and he entered the judgement. Stipe having at the first as mentioned before acknowledged the account but plead the ____.
Some time after the judgement, I was present in Huntsville when Stipe & Frank examined the Book of Pur___ & Clingman and Stipe had a credit for the very hauling he had claimed and was still, if I recollect right, some behind with them — at least they owed him nothing which both Pur___ & Frank had previously told me was the case, I suppose he must have sworn hard to get it in Court, but if he has given security as I expect, he has I think you can fix it on him.
As regards the agreement with Frank to have the Negro case to Poindexter & Bayden, I am well satisfied. Frank can hardly expect for me to take a note for the Negroes when he recollects the amount of money I have had to pay for the concern and must know to what inconvenience I have been subjected and that funds at present are of considerable importance, more than perhaps will ever be the case hereafter. I therefore decline his offer. I am fully satisfied as I have always expected to be with the arrangements you have made with mu business and wish you to continue to manage it as if it was your own. I shall certainly be glad to receive whatever may be due as soon as it can be collected and still wish the land sold as soon as possible and prompt pay will be more acceptable even at a sacrifice that a larger sum at long time.
I am pleased with this country as far as I have yet been enabled to examine it. I had intended to give you as full a description of it as I could but as my sheet is full, must defer it to some future time. My health is as good or better than usual. My wife’s much better. All the family well, and the neighborhood generally healthy.
A great deal of game. I kill a deer almost when I please — sometimes three of a day — and am called the most successful hunter about Spring Hill. Last evening, I brought in three old gobblers and a large deer. I have killed as many as eight deer in one week all still hunting.
Remind me to friends. I have some there I shall never forget. And accept for yourself & Mrs. Glen the best wishes of myself & wife.
— H. P. Poindexter