The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 60, July 1956 - April, 1957 Page: 502
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
contents, including Major Kerr's field notes, sketches, and three
Another well-known Texan who did surveying was George B.
Erath. He settled in Robertson County in June, 1831, and en-
gaged in farming and surveying. At times, Erath found it im-
possible to survey because of Indian hostilities. Once he enlisted
in a company commanded by John H. Moore and went on a
warlike expedition.2 Erath later went on another surveying
journey about the headwaters of the San Gabriel and Brushy
Creek. One of his men, Lang, was killed in a fight with the
Indians. Between putting in crops and surveying trips, Erath
was usually found scouting for Indians. He fought at the battle
of San Jacinto in 1836 and later returned to his farm in Robert-
son County. He again resumed his occupation of surveying and
while out with a small surveying party, one of his men, Curtis,
was killed in a fight with the Indians. Erath, as a surveyor, staked
off the city of Waco.
During 1838, Richard Sparks, a Barry, and a Holland, who
belonged to a surveying party, were killed by Indians on the
south side of Richmond Creek, twelve miles from the present
city of Corsicana.8 The Indians had placed themselves in ambush
near the line the surveyors were running. Others of the party
escaped by running away. Sparks was a well-known land surveyor
from Nacogdoches and his name as surveyor is signed to many
land titles in that part of Texas. The three surveyors killed by
the Indians were never buried. Some of their surveying instru-
ments were found twelve years later four miles south of Corsicana.
During the summer of 1838, a surveying expedition com-
posed of ten men from Bastrop County went up the Guadalupe
River.4 After reaching the place where the party intended to
start surveying and not seeing any sign of Indians, the members
neglected to take the customary precautions to guard against
surprises. Because some did not consider it necessary to stand
guard at night and keep a good lookout in the daytime, one old
1John Henry Brown, Indian Wars and Pioneers of Texas (Austin, 1896), 15.
2J. W. Wilbarger, Indian Depredations in Texas (Austin, 1889), 246.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 60, July 1956 - April, 1957, periodical, 1957; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101163/m1/542/: accessed July 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.