David G. Burnet
A Piece of the Action
Burnet may not have been any more successful as a businessman in Texas than he was in Ohio, but his gift of gab and interest in politics impressed his new neighbors. In 1833, he represented the Liberty area at the convention in San Felipe, where the colonists pleaded with the Mexican government for better representation. In 1834 he was named to head the Brazos District Court. He would be known the rest of his life as "Judge Burnet."
Burnet opposed what he considered "war fever" in the cause of Texas independence. As a result, his more radical neighbors did not elect him to the Consultation of 1835 or the Convention of 1836, which were formed to take Texas out of the Mexican union. Undeterred and wanting to be part of the action, he showed up at Washington-on-the-Brazos anyway.
For once in his life, David G. Burnet was in the right place at the right time. The Convention was looking for a president of their new republic and had decided not to elect one of their own members. The articulate and strong-minded Burnet politicked quickly enough to win the post by a mere seven votes.