Price, Hardy William Brown ( 1817 - ? )
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PRICE, HARDY WILLIAM BROWN - Although Mr. Price’s application to the Commissioner of Claims for 640 acres of donation land on his claim "that he was a soldier in the army of Texas and was actually engaged in the battle of San Jacinto on the 21st day of April A. D. 1836 or was one of the persons” who were detailed by special order of the Commanding General to guard the camp baggage at the Camp near Harrisburg”, was denied the compiler is convinced that he was one of those detailed to guard the camp.
Mr. Price was born in Georgia in 1817. He came to Texas in 1834, as is certified in Headright Certificate No. 77 for one-third of a league of land issued to him in 1838 by the Board of Land Commissioners for Sabine county. He accompanied his uncle Benjamin F. Bryant to Texas in November, 1834.
Mr. Price died in Alabama. Mrs. Julia P. Henderson, a descendant of Mr. Price was residing at 505 University Avenue, Rochester, New York in 1934. Mrs. Ward S. Becker, a great granddaughter of Mr. Price was in 1934 residing at 902 Chapel Street, New Haven, Connecticut.
On August 20, 1858 Mr. Price applied to the Commissioner of Claims for the land due him for his services in the army of the Republic of Texas. The Commission found: “no evidence that he was detailed to guard the baggage – his name not on list – Dismissed”.
Following is a copy of his petition:
To the Hon. Edward Clark, Commissioner of Claims:
The application of Hardy W. B. Price, who is now a citizen of the state of Alabama, with respect to your honor represents, that in the year A. D. 1834 he emigrated from the United States to Texas; that he remained in Texas several years; that he was a soldier in the army of Texas and was actually engaged in the battle of San Jacinto on the 21st day of April A. D. 1836 or was one of the persons “who were detailed by special order of the Commanding General to guard the camp baggage at the Camp near Harrisburg;” and that for such service he is entitled to a certificate for six hundred and forty acres of land Bounty. That he has never received any land or land certificate for such services, and that he now presents himself with the best testimony he is now able to produce for such services and prays for a Bounty Certificate or Warrant for six hundred and forty acres of land be granted to him by your honorable court, as by law he is entitled under “An act granting lands to those who were in the battle of San Jacinto and other battles, approved Dec. 31, 1837.”
And he ever prays with that respect which is due, etc.
(Signed) Hardy W. B. Price
by his agents and attorney
Aug. 20, 1858. H. C. Hancock
The following letter, found in the Fulmore Papers, University of Texas, dated at Clayton, Chilton County, Alabama, January 29, 1898, was addressed to “Z. T. Fulmore, Esq. Atty. at law, Austin, Texas.
I have been recommended to you as an atty of rare ability & hence write you this note. I was born in 1817 am a San Jacinto Veteran was in Capt. Bryant’s company second regiment (Sherman) & have only received $970 for my services. At the last session of your legislature I had presented to it by Senator Rogers from Anderson County, a memorial together with a sworn Certificate that I was the identical Hardy W. B. Price that I represented myself to be, that I participated in the battle of San Jacinto, served the term of my enlistment & was honorable discharged; The Judge of the Probate Court of this County (Barbour) made his certificate & attached his seal that I was the person that I represented myself to be. Added to this I had the sworn certificate from John W. Anderson, whose P. O. is Garrison Nacogdoches County of your State, that he was in the battle of San Jacinto, & that I was his messmate in Capt. Bryant’s Co. & served the term of my enlistment. And that I had a letter of introduction from Ex Gov Oakes of this state veryfying my identity, & all about me & my reputation as a citizen & how long he has known me. These papers were presented to your last Legislative body, & were then referred to a Committee (of which Mr. Rogers was a member) & subsequently made a favorable report upon the papers, returned them to the committee of whole, & they adopted the report of the subcommittee, & one of that body, was requested & agreed to draw a bill.
But it was never done, they were pinholed, & there they remained in the custody of the officer authorized to keep them.
Now my object in writing you is if we canaagree upon some stipulated price to employ you to look after them & get some action on them by your legislature at its next session. If I could have been there in person I am satisfied that I could have pushed them through, but I was, & am, too poor, to make the trip. I am really in indigent circumstances, & badly need what Texas justly owes me, & if it is necessary for me to make oath of my poverty, humiliate myself – I say if the laws or constitution of your State should require this, of me, of course I should have to do it, & let accompany the claim papers.
If you can get access to the papers you can see what progress they have made I risked my all for Texas, even life itself, & as before stated have only received $970 which was over 20 years ago. Texas justly owes me for my services, or she does not, & if she does she ought to pay me. Mr. John W. Anderson informs me that he has been paid & all I want is to be treated like my comrades in that war. Inclosed I had you a stamped envelope for answer. I have written you somewhat in detail, but had to do so to give you to understand my case.
The following account of the San Jacinto campaign was written by Mr. Price. The original is in the Fulmore Papers, Archives, Library of the University of Texas:
“…..Captain Bryant at once commenced canvassing for volunteers, to respond to General Houston’s appeal and in a few days about 42 men responded, were officered and took up the line of march to join Houston. The company were mounted on Texas ponies with long rifles as weapons of defense.
Benjamin Bryant was unanimously elected captain – Hunter 1st Lieut – Hale 2nd Lieut, and Epps D. Payne orderly – and without delay took up the line of march. To educate the soldiers in the necessary and accustomed duties which they would ere long be called upon to perform, every night guards were stationed around camps, although there was no apparent danger and no enemy near. Capt. Bryant passed through Nacogdoches and crossed the Trinity River at what was then known as Robbin’s ferry. There we met some families fleeing from the enemy and from there to Washington on the Brazos the road was nearly blockaded with them. And although the solemnity of this sight was enough to touch the heart of any human being, yet there were some ludicrous scenes that would force the risibilities to the surface in spite of fate. They were traveling in every conceivable way – in wagons, trucks, carts, and some of them packed their belongings upon the backs of oxen. From these frightened people we learned of the fall of the Alamo and the butchery of Fannin’s command at Goliad. The ferry at Washington was blockaded and a struggle to see who should cross the river first. In the scramble to get possession of the flat, the bottom fell out and Capt. Bryant left them amid the widlest excitement, retraced his march and proceeded down on the east side of the Brazos River to Groce’s ferry where he arrived late on Monday evening March 30 and went into camp.
Groce lived in a large white frame house but refused to let Capt. Bryant and his company occupy it with him. I suppose Groce was a very rich man and this was evidenced by the large negro quarter (the house being vacant as the negros had been sent out of the way of the enemy) as near his residence and the broad acres in cultivation. He offered Capt. Bryant his negro cabins which were accepted, as there was a slow rain falling and they offered partial protection from the weather. The moon was about at meridian but partly obscured by the clouds. Shortly after night closed in, three of us concluded to go foraging, and the only thing we could find was some bee gums. We weighted them as well as we could and selected the heaviest one and proceeded to business, and for this act of vandalism the writer was severely punished by the sting of a bee on his tongue. It caused great pain and he could scarcely talk for several hours. The next morning Capt. Bryant called a council of his company and the term of enlistment was discussed. It was agreed that Capt. Bryant should cross the river and interview Genl. Houston who was encamped in the bottoms on the west side of the Brazos and to offer our services for 30 days and if not accepted we would return home. Capt. Bryant was certain that in consequence of the close proximity of the enemy that a general engagement would be had within that time and his company wanted to return home in time to look after their farming interest.
The terms were accepted by Gen. Houston and Capt. Bryant with his company crossed the river and joined his army April 1. Another small company from eastern Texas joined Houston’s army with us and upon the same terms. On the 12th of April Houston crossed the Brazos river on a small steamer called Yellow Stone, which he had pressed into service to facilitate his crossings.
Houston’s “Fabian policy of retreat” had been severely criticised, in fact unreasonably so. We had only about 500 men when he retired from Gonzales, but his army was agmented (sic) until it reached about 1200 men on his retreat to Groce’s ferry. But before he arrived at Groce’s ferry, his army was depleated by the recruits leaving to put their families out of danger of the enemy, and hence his army would not have exceeded 700 men after the addition of the two small companies from eastern Texas that joined him at Groce’s and therefore Houston’s force was totally inadequate in number to give the enemy battle…..
……Lieutenant Hunter died at Harrisburg, Wednesday, April 20, and was buried there. A few days after the battle Capt. Bryant and company were discharged, having served 32 days in the army.”
Written by Louis W. Kemp, between 1930 and 1952. Please note that typographical and factual errors have not been corrected from the original sketches. The biographies have been scanned from the original typescripts, a process that sometimes allows for mistakes in the new text. Researchers should verify the accuracy of the texts' contents through other sources before quoting in publications. Additional information on the veteran may be available in the Herzstein Library.
- Died in Battle: No
- Company: [Capt. Benjamin F. Bryant] detailed to guard baggage
- Battle Account: Per Kemp, in the Fulmore Papers, Univ. of Texas
- Date of Birth: 1817
- Birthplace: Georgia
- Came to Texas: 1834, Nov
- Comments: May have fought in the U.S.-Mexican War.
- Family at San Jacinto: Uncle Benjamin Franlin Bryant at San Jacinto