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Miles, Alfred H.  ( ?  -  1837 Nov 10 )

The Kemp Sketch (What is this?) | Download the original typescript

MILES, ALFRED H. -- born in Richmond, Virginia. Served in Captain William S. Fisher's Company at San Jacinto. He was one of the captors of Santa Anna. He was issued Bounty Certificate No. 1653 for 320 acres of land for serving in the army from March 16 to June 16, 1836. He was issued Bounty Certificate No. 9652 for 640 acres of land for serving in the army from June 1, 1837 to November 10, 1837, when killed. San Jacinto Donation Certificate No. was issued to the heirs of Mr. Miles, September 17, 1838.

Mr. Mile was Second Lieutenant of a company of eighteen mounted gunmen commanded by First Lieutenant A.B. Benthuysons on a scouting expedition against Indians. On November 3, 1837 a Keechie Indian was in the act of shooting Miles when he was killed by other members of the party. This occurred near the forks of the Brazos. On November 10th at the headwaters of the Trinity River in what is now Wise County, the rangers fell in with a party of 150 Toweash Indians. A battle lasting from three to four-thirty in the afternoon ensued, ending with the death of an Indian chief. Up to this time the Texans had lost four men and six horses. After a few minutes rest the Indians made a second attack, after setting the woods afire on three sides of the Texans. The Texans charged but were repulsed losing all in ten killed and three wounded. Lieutenant Miles was among those who fell. The following obituary notice of his death appeared in the TELEGRAPH and TEXAS REGISTER, Houston, December 10, 1837: Killed in an engagement with the Indians, Lieutenant A.H. Miles, formerly of the city of Richmond, Virginia. This young man, at the first call for volunteers, gallantly came forward to assist the sinking and apparently desperate cause of Texas. He was at the Battle of San Jacinto and was the real capturer of Santa Anna. His modesty while living induced him (together with the fact that he believed he had only done his duty) silently to see others reap the honor of the capture. He had, however, in his possession certificates of the late Secretary of War and Adjutant General of the Army, of the above facts. He left to mourn his loss an affectionate mother and sister, together with a numerous circle of friends and acquaintances. They, however, will find consolation by knowing that he died struggling for well being of his adopted country.

The mother and sister of Lieutenant Miles were residing in Houston at the time of his death.

In Book 3, page 65, Probate Records of Harris County it is shown that in February 1838, James W. Scott asked to be appointed--Administrator of his estate. In his petition he said in part: Your petitioner will ever pray said Miles was killed in an engagement with the Indians on the frontier some three months since and is entitled to his Headright as a single man which I am desirous of procuring for his mother with whom I am acquainted, both being residents of the same city. He left this country for the frontier and had resided here some time previously and had no permanent residence elsewhere.."

NOTE: #1653 for 320 acres, July 6, 1854 March 16 to June 16, 1836 No Headright Duplicate S.J. No. 592,, July 6, 1854.

LETTER: Natches, August 6th, 1839 Capt. Wm. M. Logan

Dear Sir: Your favor bearing date 13th July, duly came to hand on the 5th inst., being long looked for. I assure you its contents were not ungratifying regarding the location of the land placed in your hands by me for location, truly entirely upon your own judgment and integrity, in full belief that you will not misuse either in a good cause.

Having left the employ of J. Sorito(?) and Co., about two and one-half months since and being our of business, as times, now dull, situations scarce, and loafers plenty, I have been somewhat in the notion for travelling, but this I must for a time delay for divers reasons too numerous to mention. When I do move, tis my intention to take my way to the woods, and live for a time forgetting the words, and be by the words forgot.

Please inform me when you have decided for me in the land, so that I may come over and banish myself to the woods. A chap may as well go to sleep for seven years as to try to do anything under the present existing circumstances. Why shan't I grumble? Since I have been occupied dealing liquor to others, I can mix and swallow for myself at leisure, eat, and sleep well.

You speak of "keeping up a regular correspondence" with me. In this I fully agree, hoping also that it may long continue and not without interest to both, promising to use my utmost endeavor (not to displease) shall I fail to amuse or instruct.

The late "Gallon Law" of Mississippi has not taken entire effect - the last of the licenses granted by counties or corporations for the "small sale of ardent spirits" does not expire until March 4th. Some whose licenses have expired (new licenses are not longer granted) have closed while others keep open and serve lemonades and ice cream, putting in occasionally a little truck, which they style "Orange Flower Water," or some other name, a small portion of which answers to a person's desire--that is, Broziness, Dissiness of the brain and other terms.

The weather is very warm-frequent showers lately, cool the air. The corn crops are very poor, the cotton is growing thought will be more productive than common, though long drowths and the louse in some places have been disadvantageous.

The VICKSBURG VOLUNTEERS (2 companies) have come down today on a visit and the city is at this time quite an uproarous state--those with five independent companies of this place made quite a military parade--the expenses for the maintenance of the whole will cost about $7,000, quite a large sum to be spent on such an occasion in the present dull state of affairs.

There are but few; improvements on hand now, the depot for the Rail Road and a large Ware House opposite are the principals. The cars run toward Jackson about twenty miles. The work is going on well. General Quitman has not yet returned from England. He went to procure a loan for the completion of the work.

Our papers now are mostly filled with documents of murders, robberies, etc.

As usual give my best respects to all engineering friends. Being at the end of my row I must close by soliciting a furtherance of our correspondence.

Adieu. Yours most Resp. & Obt. Svt. Edward Miles

Note: Copy of a letter from Edward Miles, Natchez, Mississippi to Captain William M. Logan, Liberty, Texas. The original was in possession of : Mr. J.P. Logan, Port Arthur, Texas, on October 17, 1938.

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.


Battle Statistics

  • Died in Battle: No
  • Rank: Private
  • Company: Capt. William S. Fisher

Personal Statistics

  • Birthplace: Virginia, Richmond
  • Date of Death: 1837 Nov 10
  • Comments: One of group that captured Santa Anna.
  • Bounty Certificate: 1653

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