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MOUNT BONNELL

Excellent views of the Texas Hill Country, the Colorado River/Lake Austin to the west and downtown Austin to the SE

RISING 775 FEET ABOVE SEA LEVEL, THIS LIMESTONE HEIGHT WAS NAMED FOR GEORGE W. BONNELL, WHO CAME TO TEXAS WITH OTHERS TO FIGHT FOR TEXAS INDEPENDENCE, 1836. WAS COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS IN REPUBLIC OF TEXAS UNDER PRESIDENT SAM HOUSTON. MOVED IN 1839 TO AUSTIN; THERE PUBLISHED THE "TEXAS SENTINEL", 1840. MEMBER TEXAN-SANTA FE EXPEDITION, 1841. WAS CAPTURED BUT RELEASED IN TIME TO JOIN MIER EXPEDITION, 1842. WAS KILLED IN CAMP ON RIO GRANDE, DEC. 26, 1842.

FRONTIERSMAN W.A.A. "BIGFOOT" WALLACE KILLED AN INDIAN HE MET FACE TO FACE WHILE CROSSING A NARROW LEDGE 50 FEET ABOVE RIVER, 1839. HE ALSO TOOK REFUGE IN A MOUNT BONNELL CAVE TO RECOVER FROM "FLUX", BUT WAS MISSING SO LONG HIS SWEETHEART ELOPED.

IN THE MID-1800'S MORMONS BUILT A MILL ON THE COLORADO RIVER AT FOOT OF MOUNT BONNELL. MILL WAS DESTROYED BY FLOOD AND THE MORMONS MOVED ON WEST.

MOUNT BONNELL WAS SITE OF PICNICS AND OUTINGS IN 1850'S AND 1860'S. AS IT IS TODAY. LEGEND HAS IT THAT AN EXCURSION TO THE PLACE IN THE 1850'S INSPIRED THE POPULAR SONG "WAIT FOR THE WAGON AND WE'LL ALL TAKE A RIDE". AS A STUNT IN 1898, MISS HAZEL KEYES SLID DOWN A CABLE STRETCHED FROM THE TOP OF MOUNT BONNELL TO SOUTH BANK OF THEN LAKE MCDONALD BELOW.

plaque from 1969

Submitted by John Bradley JEB

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