Midland is a city in and the county seat of Midland County, United States, on the Southern Plains of the state's western area. A small portion of the city extends into Martin County. At the 2010 census, the population of Midland was 111,147, a 2015 estimate gave a total of 132,950, making it the twenty-fourth most populous city in the state of Texas. Due to the oil boom in Midland, certain officials have given population estimates above 155,000, it is the principal city of the Midland, Texas Metropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Midland County, the population of which grew 4.6 percent, between July 1, 2011 and July 1, 2012, to 151,662 according to the U. S. Census Bureau; the metropolitan area is a component of the larger Midland−Odessa, Texas Combined Statistical Area, which had an estimated population of 295,987 on July 1, 2012. People in Midland are called Midlanders. Midland was founded as the midway point between Fort Worth and El Paso on the Texas and Pacific Railroad in 1881.
It is the hometown of former First Lady Laura Bush, the onetime home of former Presidents George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush, former First Lady Barbara Bush. Midland was established in June 1881 on the Texas and Pacific Railway, it earned its name because of its central location between Fort Worth and El Paso, but because there were other towns in Texas by the name of Midway, the city changed its name to Midland in January 1884 when it was granted its first Post Office. Midland became the county seat of Midland County in March 1885, when that county was first organized and separated from Tom Green County. By 1890, it had become one of the most important cattle shipping centers in the state; the city was incorporated in 1906, by 1910 the city established its first fire department, along with a new water system. Midland was changed by the discovery of oil in the Permian Basin in 1923 when the Santa Rita No. 1 well began producing in Reagan County, followed shortly by the Yates Oil Field in Iraan.
Soon, Midland was transformed into the administrative center of the West Texas oil fields. During the Second World War, Midland was the largest bombardier training base in the country. A second boom period began after the war, with the discovery and development of the Spraberry Trend, still ranked as the third-largest oil field in the United States by total reserves, yet another boom period took place during the 1970s, with the high oil prices associated with the oil and energy crises of that decade. Today, the Permian Basin produces one fifth of natural gas output. Midland's economy still relies on petroleum. By August 2006, a busy period of crude oil production had caused a significant workforce deficit. According to the Midland Chamber of Commerce, at that time there were 2,000 more jobs available in the Permian Basin than there were workers to fill them. John Howard Griffin wrote a history of Midland in 1959, Land of the High Sky. In 1967, the U. S. Supreme Court heard the case of Midland County.
Midland mayor Hank Avery had sued Midland County, challenging the electoral-districting scheme in effect for elections to the County Commissioner's Court. The county districts geographically quartered the county, but the city of Midland, in the northwestern quarter, accounted for 97% of the county's population. A judge, elected on an at-large basis, provided a fifth vote, but the result was that the three rural commissioners, representing only three percent of the county's population, held a majority of the votes; the majority of the U. S. Supreme Court held that the districting inequality violated the Fourteenth Amendment's Equal Protection clause; the dissenting minority held that this example of the Warren Court's policy of incorporation at the local-government level exceeded the Court's constitutional authority. Midland is located in the Permian Basin in the plains of West Texas. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 71.5 square miles, of which 71.3 square miles is land and 0.2 square mile is water.
Midland cool to mild winters. The city is subject to cold waves during the winter, but it sees extended periods of below-freezing cold. Midland receives 14.6 inches of precipitation per year, much of which falls in the summer. Highs exceed 90 °F on 101 days per year, 100 °F on 16 days. Nicknamed "The Tall City", Midland has long been known for its downtown skyline. Most of downtown Midland's major office buildings were built during a time of major Permian Basin oil and gas discoveries; the surge in energy prices in the mid-1980s sparked a building boom for downtown Midland. For many years, the 22-story Wilco Building in downtown Midland was the tallest building between Fort Worth and Phoenix. Today, the tallest is the 24-story Bank of America Building. Four buildings over 500 feet tall were planned in the 1980s, including one designed by architect I. M. Pei; the great oil bust of the mid-1980s killed any plans for future skyscrapers. A private development group was planning to build Energy Tower at City Center, proposed to stand at 870 feet tall with 59 floors.
If it had been built, it would have been Texas' sixth tallest building. At the 2010 census, 111,149 people, 41,268 households, 32,607 families resided in Midland; the population density was 1,558.9 people per square mile. There were 47,562 housing units at an average density of 667.1 per sq
African Americans are an ethnic group of Americans with total or partial ancestry from any of the black racial groups of Africa. The term refers to descendants of enslaved black people who are from the United States. Black and African Americans constitute the third largest racial and ethnic group in the United States. Most African Americans are descendants of enslaved peoples within the boundaries of the present United States. On average, African Americans are of West/Central African and European descent, some have Native American ancestry. According to U. S. Census Bureau data, African immigrants do not self-identify as African American; the overwhelming majority of African immigrants identify instead with their own respective ethnicities. Immigrants from some Caribbean, Central American and South American nations and their descendants may or may not self-identify with the term. African-American history starts in the 16th century, with peoples from West Africa forcibly taken as slaves to Spanish America, in the 17th century with West African slaves taken to English colonies in North America.
After the founding of the United States, black people continued to be enslaved, the last four million black slaves were only liberated after the Civil War in 1865. Due to notions of white supremacy, they were treated as second-class citizens; the Naturalization Act of 1790 limited U. S. citizenship to whites only, only white men of property could vote. These circumstances were changed by Reconstruction, development of the black community, participation in the great military conflicts of the United States, the elimination of racial segregation, the civil rights movement which sought political and social freedom. In 2008, Barack Obama became the first African American to be elected President of the United States; the first African slaves arrived via Santo Domingo to the San Miguel de Gualdape colony, founded by Spanish explorer Lucas Vázquez de Ayllón in 1526. The marriage between Luisa de Abrego, a free black domestic servant from Seville and Miguel Rodríguez, a white Segovian conquistador in 1565 in St. Augustine, is the first known and recorded Christian marriage anywhere in what is now the continental United States.
The ill-fated colony was immediately disrupted by a fight over leadership, during which the slaves revolted and fled the colony to seek refuge among local Native Americans. De Ayllón and many of the colonists died shortly afterwards of an epidemic and the colony was abandoned; the settlers and the slaves who had not escaped returned to Haiti, whence. The first recorded Africans in British North America were "20 and odd negroes" who came to Jamestown, Virginia via Cape Comfort in August 1619 as indentured servants; as English settlers died from harsh conditions and more Africans were brought to work as laborers. An indentured servant would work for several years without wages; the status of indentured servants in early Virginia and Maryland was similar to slavery. Servants could be bought, sold, or leased and they could be physically beaten for disobedience or running away. Unlike slaves, they were freed after their term of service expired or was bought out, their children did not inherit their status, on their release from contract they received "a year's provision of corn, double apparel, tools necessary", a small cash payment called "freedom dues".
Africans could raise crops and cattle to purchase their freedom. They raised families, married other Africans and sometimes intermarried with Native Americans or English settlers. By the 1640s and 1650s, several African families owned farms around Jamestown and some became wealthy by colonial standards and purchased indentured servants of their own. In 1640, the Virginia General Court recorded the earliest documentation of lifetime slavery when they sentenced John Punch, a Negro, to lifetime servitude under his master Hugh Gwyn for running away. In the Spanish Florida some Spanish married or had unions with Pensacola, Creek or African women, both slave and free, their descendants created a mixed-race population of mestizos and mulattos; the Spanish encouraged slaves from the southern British colonies to come to Florida as a refuge, promising freedom in exchange for conversion to Catholicism. King Charles II of Spain issued a royal proclamation freeing all slaves who fled to Spanish Florida and accepted conversion and baptism.
Most went to the area around St. Augustine, but escaped slaves reached Pensacola. St. Augustine had mustered an all-black militia unit defending Spain as early as 1683. One of the Dutch African arrivals, Anthony Johnson, would own one of the first black "slaves", John Casor, resulting from the court ruling of a civil case; the popular conception of a race-based slave system did not develop until the 18th century. The Dutch West India Company introduced slavery in 1625 with the importation of eleven black slaves into New Amsterdam. All the colony's slaves, were freed upon its surrender to the British. Massachusetts was the first British colony to recognize slavery in 1641. In 1662, Virginia passed a law that children of enslaved women took the status of the mother, rather than that of the father, as under English common law; this principle was called partus sequitur ventrum. By an act of 1699, the colony ordered all free blacks deported defining as slaves all people of African descent who remained in the c
United States Senate
The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress, which along with the United States House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the legislature of the United States. The Senate chamber is located in the north wing of the Capitol, in Washington, D. C; the composition and powers of the Senate are established by Article One of the United States Constitution. The Senate is composed of senators; each state, regardless of its population size, is represented by two senators who serve staggered terms of six years. There being at present 50 states in the Union, there are presently 100 senators. From 1789 until 1913, senators were appointed by legislatures of the states; as the upper chamber of Congress, the Senate has several powers of advice and consent which are unique to it. These include the approval of treaties, the confirmation of Cabinet secretaries, Supreme Court justices, federal judges, flag officers, regulatory officials, other federal executive officials and other federal uniformed officers.
In addition to these, in cases wherein no candidate receives a majority of electors for Vice President, the duty falls to the Senate to elect one of the top two recipients of electors for that office. Furthermore, the Senate has the responsibility of conducting the trials of those impeached by the House; the Senate is considered both a more deliberative and more prestigious body than the House of Representatives due to its longer terms, smaller size, statewide constituencies, which led to a more collegial and less partisan atmosphere. The presiding officer of the Senate is the Vice President of the United States, President of the Senate. In the Vice President's absence, the President Pro Tempore, customarily the senior member of the party holding a majority of seats, presides over the Senate. In the early 20th century, the practice of majority and minority parties electing their floor leaders began, although they are not constitutional officers; the drafters of the Constitution created a bicameral Congress as a compromise between those who felt that each state, since it was sovereign, should be represented, those who felt the legislature must directly represent the people, as the House of Commons did in Great Britain.
This idea of having one chamber represent people while the other gives equal representation to states regardless of population, was known as the Connecticut Compromise. There was a desire to have two Houses that could act as an internal check on each other. One was intended to be a "People's House" directly elected by the people, with short terms obliging the representatives to remain close to their constituents; the other was intended to represent the states to such extent as they retained their sovereignty except for the powers expressly delegated to the national government. The Senate was thus not designed to serve the people of the United States equally; the Constitution provides that the approval of both chambers is necessary for the passage of legislation. First convened in 1789, the Senate of the United States was formed on the example of the ancient Roman Senate; the name is derived from Latin for council of elders. James Madison made the following comment about the Senate: In England, at this day, if elections were open to all classes of people, the property of landed proprietors would be insecure.
An agrarian law would soon take place. If these observations be just, our government ought to secure the permanent interests of the country against innovation. Landholders ought to have a share in the government, to support these invaluable interests, to balance and check the other, they ought to be so constituted. The Senate, ought to be this body. Article Five of the Constitution stipulates that no constitutional amendment may be created to deprive a state of its equal suffrage in the Senate without that state's consent; the District of Columbia and all other territories are not entitled to representation allowed to vote in either House of the Congress. The District of Columbia elects two "shadow U. S. Senators", but they are officials of the D. C. City Government and not members of the U. S. Senate; the United States has had 50 states since 1959, thus the Senate has had 100 senators since 1959. The disparity between the most and least populous states has grown since the Connecticut Compromise, which granted each state two members of the Senate and at least one member of the House of Representatives, for a total minimum of three presidential electors, regardless of population.
In 1787, Virginia had ten times the population of Rhode Island, whereas today California has 70 times the population of Wyoming, based on the 1790 and 2000 censuses. This means some citizens are two orders of magnitude better represented in the Senate than those in other states. Seats in the House of Representatives are proportionate to the population of each state, reducing the disparity of representation. Before the adoption of the Seventeenth Amendment in 1913, senators were elected by the individual state legislatures. Problems with repeated vacant seats due to the inability of a legislature to elect senators, intrastate political struggles, bribery and intimidation had led to a growing movement to amend the Constitution to allow for the direct election of senators; the party composition of the Senate during the 116th Congress: Art
The Progressive Era was a period of widespread social activism and political reform across the United States that spanned from the 1890s to the 1920s. The main objectives of the Progressive movement were eliminating problems caused by industrialization, urbanization and political corruption; the movement targeted political machines and their bosses. By taking down these corrupt representatives in office, a further means of direct democracy would be established, they sought regulation of monopolies and corporations through antitrust laws, which were seen as a way to promote equal competition for the advantage of legitimate competitors. Many progressives supported prohibition of alcoholic beverages, ostensibly to destroy the political power of local bosses based in saloons, but others out of a religious motivation. At the same time, women's suffrage was promoted to bring a "purer" female vote into the arena. A third theme was building an Efficiency Movement in every sector that could identify old ways that needed modernizing, bring to bear scientific and engineering solutions.
The middle class was in charge for helping reform the Progressive Era, they got stuck with all of the burdens of this reformation. In Michael McGerr's book A Fierce Discontent, Jane Addams stated that she believed in the necessity of "association" of stepping across the social boundaries of industrial America. Many activists joined efforts to reform local government, public education, finance, industry, railroads and many other areas. Progressives transformed and made "scientific" the social sciences history and political science. In academic fields the day of the amateur author gave way to the research professor who published in the new scholarly journals and presses; the national political leaders included Republicans Theodore Roosevelt, Robert M. La Follette Sr. and Charles Evans Hughes and Democrats William Jennings Bryan, Woodrow Wilson and Al Smith. Leaders of the movement existed far from presidential politics: Jane Addams, Grace Abbott, Edith Abbott and Sophonisba Breckinridge were among the most influential non-governmental Progressive Era reformers.
The movement operated chiefly at local level, but it expanded to state and national levels. Progressives drew support from the middle class, supporters included many lawyers, physicians and business people; some Progressives supported scientific methods as applied to economics, industry, medicine, theology and the family. They followed advances underway at the time in Western Europe and adopted numerous policies, such as a major transformation of the banking system by creating the Federal Reserve System in 1913 and the arrival of cooperative banking in the US with the founding of the first credit union in 1908. Reformers felt that old-fashioned ways meant waste and inefficiency, eagerly sought out the "one best system". Disturbed by the waste, stubbornness and injustices of the Gilded Age, the Progressives were committed to changing and reforming every aspect of the state and economy. Significant changes enacted at the national levels included the imposition of an income tax with the Sixteenth Amendment, direct election of Senators with the Seventeenth Amendment, Prohibition with the Eighteenth Amendment, election reforms to stop corruption and fraud, women's suffrage through the Nineteenth Amendment to the U.
S. Constitution. A main objective of the Progressive Era movement was to eliminate corruption within the government, they made it a point to focus on family and many other important aspects that still are enforced today. The most important political leaders during this time were Theodore Roosevelt, Robert M. La Follette Sr. Charles Evans Hughes, Herbert Hoover; some democratic leaders included William Jennings Bryan, Woodrow Wilson, Al Smith. This movement targeted the regulations of huge corporations; this was done through antitrust laws to promote equal competition amongst every business. This was done through the Sherman Act of 1890, the Clayton Act of 1914, the Federal Trade Commission Act of 1914. A hallmark group of the Progressive Era, the middle class became the driving force behind much of the thought and reform that took place in this time. With an increasing disdain for the upper class and aristocracy of the time, the middle class is characterized by their rejection of the individualistic philosophy of the upper ten.
They had a growing interest in the communication and role between classes, those of which are referred to as the upper class, working class and themselves, sought to define these terms. Along these lines, the founder off Hull-House, Jane Addams, coined the term "association" as a counter to Individualism, with association referring to the search for a relationship between the classes. Additionally, the middle class began to move away from prior Victorian era domestic values. Divorce rates increased as women preferred to seek freedom from the home. Victorianism was pushed aside in favor of the rise of the Progressives. Magazines experienced a boost in popularity in 1900, with some attaining circulations in the hundreds of thousands of subscribers. In the beginning of the age of Mass media the rapid expansion of national advertising led to the cover price of popular magazines falling to about 10 cents, lessening the financial barrier to consuming them. Another factor contributing to the dramatic upswing in magazine circulation was the prominent cover
Supreme Court of the United States
The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the federal judiciary of the United States. Established pursuant to Article III of the U. S. Constitution in 1789, it has original jurisdiction over a narrow range of cases, including suits between two or more states and those involving ambassadors, it has ultimate appellate jurisdiction over all federal court and state court cases that involve a point of federal constitutional or statutory law. The Court has the power of judicial review, the ability to invalidate a statute for violating a provision of the Constitution or an executive act for being unlawful. However, it may act only within the context of a case in an area of law over which it has jurisdiction; the court may decide cases having political overtones, but it has ruled that it does not have power to decide nonjusticiable political questions. Each year it agrees to hear about one hundred to one hundred fifty of the more than seven thousand cases that it is asked to review.
According to federal statute, the court consists of the Chief Justice of the United States and eight associate justices, all of whom are nominated by the President and confirmed by the Senate. Once appointed, justices have lifetime tenure unless they resign, retire, or are removed from office; each justice has a single vote in deciding. When the chief justice is in the majority, he decides. In modern discourse, justices are categorized as having conservative, moderate, or liberal philosophies of law and of judicial interpretation. While a far greater number of cases in recent history have been decided unanimously, decisions in cases of the highest profile have come down to just one single vote, exemplifying the justices' alignment according to these categories; the Court meets in the Supreme Court Building in Washington, D. C, its law enforcement arm is the Supreme Court of the United States Police. It was while debating the division of powers between the legislative and executive departments that delegates to the 1787 Constitutional Convention established the parameters for the national judiciary.
Creating a "third branch" of government was a novel idea. Early on, some delegates argued that national laws could be enforced by state courts, while others, including James Madison, advocated for a national judicial authority consisting of various tribunals chosen by the national legislature, it was proposed that the judiciary should have a role in checking the executive power to veto or revise laws. In the end, the Framers compromised by sketching only a general outline of the judiciary, vesting federal judicial power in "one supreme Court, in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish", they delineated neither the exact powers and prerogatives of the Supreme Court nor the organization of the Template:Judicial branch as a whole. The 1st United States Congress provided the detailed organization of a federal judiciary through the Judiciary Act of 1789; the Supreme Court, the country's highest judicial tribunal, was to sit in the nation's Capital and would be composed of a chief justice and five associate justices.
The act divided the country into judicial districts, which were in turn organized into circuits. Justices were required to "ride circuit" and hold circuit court twice a year in their assigned judicial district. After signing the act into law, President George Washington nominated the following people to serve on the court: John Jay for chief justice and John Rutledge, William Cushing, Robert H. Harrison, James Wilson, John Blair Jr. as associate justices. All six were confirmed by the Senate on September 26, 1789. Harrison, declined to serve. In his place, Washington nominated James Iredell; the Supreme Court held its inaugural session from February 2 through February 10, 1790, at the Royal Exchange in New York City the U. S. capital. A second session was held there in August 1790; the earliest sessions of the court were devoted to organizational proceedings, as the first cases did not reach it until 1791. When the national capital moved to Philadelphia in 1790, the Supreme Court did so as well.
After meeting at Independence Hall, the Court established its chambers at City Hall. Under Chief Justices Jay and Ellsworth, the Court heard few cases; as the Court had only six members, every decision that it made by a majority was made by two-thirds. However, Congress has always allowed less than the court's full membership to make decisions, starting with a quorum of four justices in 1789; the court lacked a home of its own and had little prestige, a situation not helped by the era's highest-profile case, Chisholm v. Georgia, reversed within two years by the adoption of the Eleventh Amendment; the court's power and prestige grew during the Marshall Court. Under Marshall, the court established the power of judicial review over acts of Congress, including specifying itself as the supreme expositor of the Constitution and making several important constitutional rulings that gave shape and substance to the balance of power between the federal government and states; the Marshall Court ended the practice of each justice issuin
Republican Party (United States)
The Republican Party referred to as the GOP, is one of the two major political parties in the United States. The GOP was founded in 1854 by opponents of the Kansas-Nebraska Act, which had expanded slavery into U. S. territories. The party subscribed to classical liberalism and took ideological stands that were anti-slavery and pro-economic reform. Abraham Lincoln was the first Republican president in the history of the United States; the Party was dominant over the Democrats during the Third Party System and Fourth Party System. In 1912, Theodore Roosevelt formed the Progressive Party after being rejected by the GOP and ran unsuccessfully as a third-party presidential candidate calling for social reforms. After the 1912 election, many Roosevelt supporters left the Party, the Party underwent an ideological shift to the right; the liberal Republican element in the GOP was overwhelmed by a conservative surge begun by Barry Goldwater in 1964 that continued during the Reagan Era in the 1980s. After the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the party's core base shifted, with the Southern states becoming more reliably Republican in presidential politics and the Northeastern states becoming more reliably Democratic.
White voters identified with the Republican Party after the 1960s. Following the Supreme Court's 1973 decision in Roe v. Wade, the Republican Party made opposition to abortion a key plank of its national party platform and grew its support among evangelicals. By 2000, the Republican Party was aligned with Christian conservatism; the Party's core support since the 1990s comes chiefly from the South, the Great Plains, the Mountain States and rural areas in the North. The 21st century Republican Party ideology is American conservatism, which contrasts with the Democrats' liberal platform and progressive wing; the GOP supports lower taxes, free market capitalism, a strong national defense, gun rights and restrictions on labor unions. The GOP was committed to protectionism and tariffs from its founding until the 1930s when it was based in the industrial Northeast and Midwest, but has grown more supportive of free trade since 1952. In addition to advocating for conservative economic policies, the Republican Party is conservative.
Founded in the Northern states in 1854 by abolitionists, modernizers, ex-Whigs and ex-Free Soilers, the Republican Party became the principal opposition to the dominant Democratic Party and the popular Know Nothing Party. The party grew out of opposition to the Kansas–Nebraska Act, which repealed the Missouri Compromise and opened Kansas Territory and Nebraska Territory to slavery and future admission as slave states; the Northern Republicans saw the expansion of slavery as a great evil. The first public meeting of the general anti-Nebraska movement, at which the name Republican was suggested for a new anti-slavery party, was held on March 20, 1854 in a schoolhouse in Ripon, Wisconsin; the name was chosen to pay homage to Thomas Jefferson's Republican Party. The first official party convention was held on July 1854 in Jackson, Michigan. At the 1856 Republican National Convention, the party adopted a national platform emphasizing opposition to the expansion of slavery into U. S. territories. While Republican candidate John C.
Frémont lost the 1856 United States presidential election to James Buchanan, he did win 11 of the 16 northern states. The Republican Party first came to power in the elections of 1860 when it won control of both houses of Congress and its candidate, former congressman Abraham Lincoln, was elected President. In the election of 1864, it united with War Democrats to nominate Lincoln on the National Union Party ticket. Under Republican congressional leadership, the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution—which banned slavery in the United States—passed the Senate in 1864 and the House in 1865; the party's success created factionalism within the party in the 1870s. Those who felt that Reconstruction had been accomplished, was continued to promote the large-scale corruption tolerated by President Ulysses S. Grant, ran Horace Greeley for the presidency; the Stalwart faction defended Grant and the spoils system, whereas the Half-Breeds pushed for reform of the civil service. The Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act was passed in 1883.
The Republican Party supported hard money, high tariffs to promote economic growth, high wages and high profits, generous pensions for Union veterans, the annexation of Hawaii. The Republicans had strong support from pietistic Protestants, but they resisted demands for Prohibition; as the Northern postwar economy boomed with heavy and light industry, mines, fast-growing cities, prosperous agriculture, the Republicans took credit and promoted policies to sustain the fast growth. The GOP was dominant over the Democrats during the Third Party System. However, by 1890 the Republicans had agreed to the Sherman Antitrust Act and the Interstate Commerce Commission in response to complaints from owners of small businesses and farmers; the high McKinley Tariff of 1890 hurt the party and the Democrats swept to a landslide in the off-year elections defeating McKinley himself. The Democrats elected Grover Cleveland in 1884 and 1892; the election of William McKinley in 1896 was marked by a resurgence of Republican dominance that lasted until 1932.
McKinley promised that high tariffs would end the severe hardship caused by the Pa
John Henninger Reagan
John Henninger Reagan was an American politician from the U. S. state of Texas. A Democrat, Reagan resigned from the U. S. House of Representatives when Texas seceded from the Union and joined the Confederate States of America, he served in the cabinet of Jefferson Davis as Postmaster General. After the Confederate defeat, he called for cooperation with the federal government, an unpopular position, he was elected to Congress in 1874, after his predictions of harsh treatment for resistance were proved correct. He served in the U. S. Senate from 1887 to 1891, as chairman of the Texas Railroad Commission, he was among founders of the Texas State Historical Association. Reagan was born in 1818 in Tennessee, to Timothy Richard and Elizabeth Reagan, he traveled to Texas. He worked as a surveyor from 1839 to 1843, farmed in Kaufman County until 1851. During the time he worked as a surveyor, he served as a private tutor to the children of John Marie Durst. Reagan was licensed to practice in 1846, opening an office in Buffalo.
The same year he was elected a probate judge in Henderson County. In 1847 he was elected to the Texas House of Representatives, but was defeated for a second term in 1849, he was practiced in both Buffalo and Palestine, Texas. Reagan was elected as a district judge in Palestine, serving from 1852 to 1857, his efforts to defeat the American Party led to his election to Congress in 1857 from First District. Reagan was a staunch supporter of slavery, he believed abolition would require Southern whites to "exterminate the greater portion of the race." He believed in the federal protections of slavery under the U. S. Constitution as extensions of private property rights, therefore he supported the Union, but when it became clear that Texas would secede, Reagan resigned from Congress on January 15, 1861 and returned home. He participated in the secession convention that met at Austin on January 31, 1861. Chosen as a member of the Provisional Confederate Congress, within a month Reagan was appointed by President Jefferson Davis as Postmaster General.
Reagan was an able administrator, presiding over the only cabinet department, described as functioning well during the war. Despite the hostilities, the United States Post Office Department continued operations in the Confederacy until June 1, 1861, when the Confederate service took over its functions. Reagan sent an agent to Washington, D. C. with letters asking the heads of the United States Post Office Department's various bureaus to come work for him. Nearly all did so, bringing copies of their records, account books, etc. "Reagan in effect had stolen the U. S. Post Office," historian William C. Davis wrote; when President Davis asked his cabinet for the status of their departments, Reagan reported he had his up and running in six weeks. Davis was amazed. Reagan cut expenses by eliminating costly and little-used routes and forcing railroads that carried the mail to reduce their rates. Despite the problems the war caused, his department managed to turn a profit, "the only post office department in American history to pay its own way," wrote William C.
Davis. Reagan was the only member of the cabinet to oppose Robert E. Lee's offensive into Pennsylvania in June–July 1863, he instead supported a proposal to detach the First Corps of the Army of Northern Virginia to reinforce Joseph E. Johnston in Mississippi, so that he could break the Siege of Vicksburg. Historian Shelby Foote noted that, as the only Cabinet member from west of the Mississippi, Reagan was acutely aware of the critical consequences of Vicksburg's capture; when Davis abandoned Richmond on April 2, 1865, shortly before the entry of Army of the Potomac under George G. Meade, Reagan accompanied the president on his flight to the Carolinas. On April 27, Davis made him Secretary of the Treasury after George A. Trenholm's resignation. Reagan served in that capacity until he, Texas Governor Francis R. Lubbock were captured near Irwinville, Georgia on May 10. Reagan was imprisoned with Confederate Vice President Alexander Stephens at Fort Warren in Boston, where Reagan spent twenty-two weeks in solitary confinement.
On August 11, he wrote an open letter to his fellow Texans urging cooperation with the Union, renunciation of the secession convention, the abolition of slavery, letting freed slaves vote. He warned of military rule that would enforce these policies if Texans did not voluntarily adopt them. For this, he was denounced by Texans, he was released from prison that year and returned home to Palestine in December. To those who felt that the Reconstruction was unduly harsh, his prescience was hailed—he became known as the "Old Roman," a Texas Cincinnatus, he was part of the successful effort to remove Republican Edmund J. Davis from the governorship in 1874, after Davis attempted to illegally remain in office after he had lost the election; that year Reagan was elected to the Congressional seat he held before the war, serving from March 4, 1875, to March 3, 1887. In 1875, he served in the convention. In Congress, he advocated federal regulation of railroads and helped create the Interstate Commerce Commission.
He served as the first chairman of the Committee on Post Offices and Post Roads. Though he had been elected by the Texas State Legislature to the US Senate in 1887, he resigned to become chairman of the Railroad Commission of Texas at the behest of his friend, Governor James Stephen "Jim" Hogg, chaired it until 1903. Hogg had run on a platform of state regulation of railroads. Conscious of the importance of history, he was a founder of the Texas State Hist