The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 35, July 1931 - April, 1932

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

JOHN RICE JONES
GAYLE TALBOT
It has ever been a matter of much pride to native Texans that
the men who came with and followed Stephen F. Austin into the
virgin valleys of the Colorado and the Brazos were almost without
exception individuals of uncommon worth and ambition. The
plans they laid, the public documents they framed and the sacri-
fices they so boldly made upon every battle field proved them to
be of the better stuff. History, yet incomplete, is adding from
whatever source the dole of credit due them.
Among those pre-Republic pioneers who played a modest, yet
noteworthy, part was John Rice Jones, of whom but little has
been written. His timely labors would suggest more than pass-
ing mention, for his was the hand that penned the initial decla-
ration against Mexican unfairness at San Felipe on July 14,
1835, and he later became the first Postmaster General of the
Republic of Texas and one of the executors of the estate of Wil-
liam Barrett Travis. He was born in Kaskaskia, Illinois (then
Northwest Territory), January 8, 1792, a son of Judge John
Rice Jones and Mary Barger Jones, and came to Texas in 1831,
after having served in the war of 1812 under Captain Henry
Dodge, along with his brothers, Adolphus and Myers F. Jones,
the two last named later moving to Texas and playing worthy
parts, as elsewhere shown. Soon after arriving in Texas, John
Rice Jones received under headright a league of land in Fayette
county and a labor of land in Brazoria county, but political and
army history seems to have placed his residence as at San Felipe,
although he died in Fayette county in 1845, and was buried near
"Fairyland Farm," the original headright. He was married
twice, the first time to a daughter of Major James Hawkins, of
Missouri, in 1818, who died at Velasco soon after San Jacinto,
while her husband was in office under the administration of Presi-
dent Burnet during Santa Anna's incarceration there. His
second wife was Miss Sarah Fidelia Heard, a sister of Captain
William J. E. Heard, who rendered service in the battle of San
Jacinto in command of Company L, Texas volunteers. For a

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 35, July 1931 - April, 1932. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101092/. Accessed July 29, 2014.