The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 8, July 1904 - April, 1905 Page: 260
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Texas Historical Association Quarterly.
of Captain William Ryan, of Fort Bend County. Later this ex-
pedition went to pieces on the Rio Grande, a part returning to Texas
with Somerville, and the others crossing over into Mexico. John
Fenn, through the influence of Robert Herndon, joined with the
former band, and thus escaped the horrors of the captivity and
decimation, which have made the term "Mier prisoners" suggestive
of all the suffering that humanity is capable of enduring.
In 1852 John R. Fenn married Miss Rebecca M. Williams. She
was born in Wilkinson County, Mississippi, and came to Texas
with her parents in 1845, settling on Oyster Creek, one and a half
miles from Clear Lake, in Brazoria County. Mrs. Fenn's ancestors
were distinguished in the war of the American Revolution. One
great-grandfather, General Nathaniel Randolph, served on the staff
of General Lafayette, and Ezekiel Ayers, another great-grandfather,
served with equal honor in another branch of the colonial army.
The grandfather, Isaac Williams, was for some time colonial gov-
ernor of the province of Mississippi.
After their marriage, Mr. and Mrs. Fenn also settled on Oyster
Creek, on the Thomas Barnett League. For many years past Hous-
ton has been regarded as their place of residence, but there was
also a home maintained on the old plantation, where they entered
upon life together, where he always retained supervision over his
plantation affairs, and where, at his request, he was laid away when
his period of life ended.
Mr. and Mrs. Penn early became members of the Texas Veterans'
Association, attending nearly every meeting. He became first vice-
president, and was always an active, useful member. Upon the
organization of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas his wife
was made president of San Jacinto Chapter, and, as an earnest
worker for the preservation of the historic associations of the old
Republic of Texas, was ably aided by his counsel. They were truly
united in patriotic fervor, as in all the objects of life. In 1902 they
celebrated their golden wedding at their home in Houston, and on
that happy occasion there were gathered around them their two
sons, Francis Marion Otis Fenn, and Joseph Johnson Fenn, with
their wives and children; their daughters, Mary-with her hus-
band James J. McKeever, Jr.-and Miss Belle Fenn; and num-
bers of loving friends.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 8, July 1904 - April, 1905, periodical, 1905; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101033/m1/267/: accessed April 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.