The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 91, July 1987 - April, 1988 Page: 37
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Land Grants in the Robertson Colony Area
however, was his sponsorship of the bill creating the General Land
In 1838 Senator Robertson retired to devote his time to raising Ara-
bian race horses, becoming the first known Texan to keep written records
of horse breeding in this state. He had an Arabian stallion named Black
Douglass, sired by Leviathan, from the royal stables in England, and he
named his colts after characters in Sir Walter Scott's novels. He died near
Nashville, Texas, on March 4, 1842, and is now buried in the Texas State
Cemetery in Austin.9
In November, 1837, following the Revolution, Robertson filed suit in
the Travis County District Court, asking that his claims and rights as
empresario of the Nashville, or Robertson's, Colony be settled and con-
firmed. However, it was not until December of 1847-after both Robertson
and Stephen F. Austin were dead-that the Supreme Court of the state
of Texas handed down a verdict. The court found evidence that 100
families had been introduced to Robertson's Colony previous to the
renewal of his contract in 1834, 279 families during the tenure of William
H. Steele as Robertson's land commissioner, 100 families previous to
March, 1836, and 121 previous to that time but not recorded, making
a total of 600 families. To give the reader an idea of what such a decision
meant, it must be pointed out that an empresario was entitled to five
leagues and five labors (or a total of 23,027.5 acres) for each one hun-
dred families introduced. With 600 families to his credit, Robertson would
have been entitled to 138,165 acres of premium land. He was also entitled
to a league and a labor as head of a family. However, because of con-
flicting claims and the subsequent relinquishment of some claims and their
replacement by others, the total given here does not correspond with the
total given under his name in the list below.'"
In 1939 this author began compiling documents concerning Robert-
son's Colony. In 1945 he made a progress report and in 1974 began
8Webb, Carroll, and Branda (eds.), Handbook of Texas, I, 338 - 339, II, 488; Biographical
Directory of the Texan Conventions and Congresses, 1832 - 1845 (n.p , n.d.), 159 - 160; muster
roll of Captain Robertson, Jan. 17, 1836, General Land Office Muster Roll Book, II,
119, General Land Office Record Group (RG 305) (photostatic copy, Archives Division,
Texas State Library, Austin), muster roll of Captain Boales, Sept. 11, 1836, ibid., 120
9Malcolm D McLean, Fne Texas Horses- Their Pedgrees and Performance, 1830 - 1845 (Fort
Worth: Texas Christian University Press, 1966), 32 - 36, 131 - 134; Webb, Carroll, and
Branda (eds.), Handbook of Texas, II, 488.
"'Houston v. Robertson, 2 Tex. 30 (1847). Translations of the colonization law of
Coahuila and Texas can be found in McLean (comp. and ed.), Papers Concerning Robert-
son's Colony, II, 269 - 288, and in H P N. Gammel (comp.), The Laws of Texas (10
vols.; Austin: Gammell Book Company, 1898), I, 40 - 46, 99 - 106, 125 - 133
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 91, July 1987 - April, 1988, periodical, 1987/1988; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101211/m1/63/: accessed December 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.