Indian wars and pioneers of Texas / by John Henry Brown. Page: 266 of 894
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INDIAN WARS AND PIONEERS OF TEXAS.
it was destroyed by fire. Upon the organization of
counties in the Republic of Texas, the territory embracing
a large tract of land was named Harris in
honor of John Richardson Harris. Mrs. Jane
Harris, his widow, could never be prevailed upon to
leave her homestead and lived there until her
death, which occurred August 15th, 1869. She
left four clillren, De Witt Clinton Harris, who
married Miss Saville Fenwick, Lewis Birdsall
Harris, who married first, Miss Jane E. Wilcox,
and, after her death, Mrs. Amanda C. Dell;
Miss Mary Jane Harris, who married Judge
Andrew Briscoe, and John Birdsall Harris, who
married Miss Virginia Goodrich. The only one
of her children surviving her is her daughter, Mrs.
Judge Andrew Briscoe was the son of Mr. Parmenas
and Mrs. Mary (Montgomery) Briscoe. He
was descended from a cavalier family of England.
Four brothers of this family emigrated to Virginia
about the year 1655, in Cromwell's time. His
grandfather, William Briscoe, married Miss Elizabeth
Wallace in Virginia and, in 1785, emigrated to
Kentucky. Soon after becoming of age, Mr. Parmenas
Briscoe emigrated to the Mississipl)i Territory
where, on December 18th, 1809, he married
Miss Mary Montgomery, daughter of Mr. Samuel
and Mrs. Margaret (Crockett) Montgomery. He
was commander of a company in the Creek War,
and also in the war of 1812-14. He was for
several years General of militia of Mississippi and
served as a member of the Territorial Legislature
and the State Senate. While a member of the
latter body he introduced a bill which urged an
investigation of the status of the numerous banks
which were doing business without a substantial
capital. It resulted in breaking them upl. Briscoe's
bill was famous in Mississippi, as the measure
aroused very bitter feelings. In 1843, he was reelected
to the State Senate by a larger majority
than ever and was urged to allow his name to go
before the people as a candidate for Congress.
This he refused to do, but continued a recognized
leader of Democracy up to March, 1851,
when he went to California. He died on
his return trip in 1851 aboard ship near
Acapulco, Mexico, and was buried at sea. His
son, Judge Andrew Briscoe, subject of this
memoir, was born November 25th, 1810, in Adams
County, Mississippi; emigrated to Texas in 1834,
carrying with him a large stock of goods, and
established himself at Anahuac, the chief port of
entry on Galveston Bay. His resistance to the
arbitrary collection of customs dues June, 1835,
sought to be collected by Capt. Tenorio, the Mexican
commander of the garrison, upon goods merely
to be transported from one town in the colony to
anotlier, led to the first active measures of resistance
taken by the patriot Texians in 1835. Led by
Wm. B. Travis, a band of Texians collected at
Harrisburg and vicinity, loaded a six-pound cannon
on board the sloop " Ohio," attacked the Mexican
garrison at Anahuac, disarmed the Mexicans
and released Andrew Briscoe from the loathsome
prison in which he had been confined for several
days. In October, 1835, he was elected Captain of
the Liberty Volunteers, who participated witli him
in the battle of Concepcion, October 28th, 1835.
He was one of tile volunteers who stormed an(l
took San Antonio, D)ecember 6th, 1835, and was
later elected a member of the convention to assemble
at Washington, Texas, March 1st, 1836, and
hut for this circumstance would have been one of
tle victims of the Alamo. He left the army at
San Antonio in the latter part of February, but a
day or two before the town was invested by Mexicans.
Arriving at Washington he affixed his name
to the Declaration of Independence, which made
Texas a free and independent republic. He raised
a company of regulars for the army, which, as
Company A., he commanded in the battle of San
Jacinto, April 21st, 1836. Soon after this event,
which assured the tranquillity of the Republic, he
was appointed Chief Justice of Harris County.
August 17th, 1837, he married Miss Mary Jane
Harris, daughter of Mr. John R. and Mrs. Jane
(Birdsall) Harris. In 1839 he obtained a charter
for the Harrisburg and Brazos R. R., the first obtained
in Texas. A few miles of grading]was done
but the enterprise was abandoned. The route
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Brown, John Henry. Indian wars and pioneers of Texas / by John Henry Brown., book, 1880~; Austin, Tex.. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth6725/m1/266/: accessed October 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .