Lent Munson Hitchcock, Jr. was born on October 15, 1815 in Southington, Connecticut, into a seafaring family of New England merchants. He went to sea aboard his father’s ship at about age fourteen, and learned seamanship, navigation, and business on trading voyages to the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean. In 1836, at the age of 20, he signed aboard the Texian Navy schooner-of-war Independence at New Orleans as a Midshipman, and in May was commissioned a Lieutenant aboard the Texas Navy schooner Brutus, under Captain William A. Hurd.
Hitchcock served aboard Brutus for almost a year, until April 10, 1837. During that time, Brutus patrolled the Texas coast and spent several months refitting and recruiting in New York. After resigning his commission in April, Hitchcock was appointed as a pilot, qualified to guide vessels in and out of the treacherous entrance to Galveston Bay. Hitchcock also opened a chandlery and general merchandise business in Galveston, often coordinating with his father, Lent Munson Hitchcock, Sr., who commanded the schooner Corine running between New York and Galveston. Hitchcock was active in civic affairs, serving as Galveston’s first designated Harbor Master, as a City Alderman, and in numerous local organizations.
During the Civil War, Hitchcock helped organize the defenses at Galveston and, as an operating officer of the Galveston, Houston & Henderson Railroad, supervised the line’s government contracting for the transportation of troops, supplies, and charters or locomotives and rolling stock.
Hitchcock died at Galveston on February 27, 1869. After his death his widow, Emily Elizabeth Clifford Hitchcock, donated property to the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railway in mainland Galveston County, on the condition that the stop there be named Hitchcock in honor of her late husband. Lent Munson Hitchcock, Jr. and Emily Elizabeth Clifford Hitchcock are buried in Old Episcopal Cemetery in Galveston.
Join the Texas Navy Association on Saturday, October 21, at 10 a.m. at Old Episcopal Cemetery in Galveston, for a medallion ceremony recognizing Lent Munson Hitchcock, Jr., who served as an officer in the Texian Navy during the Revolution in 1836-37. The Texas Navy Association is a private, 501(c)(3) organization, dedicated to preserving and promoting the historical legacy of the naval forces of the Republic of Texas, 1835-45. Membership in the Texas Navy Association is open to all persons age 16 and over who have an interest in Texas history and want to help support the goals of the organization.