San Jancinto Museum of History

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Wyly, Alfred Henderson  ( ?  -  1867 May 11 )

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WYLY, ALFRED HENDERSON--Captain of a Volunteer Company of 17 men at San Jacinto. Five of the men in this organization are known to have been members of Captain L. Smith's Company at muster April 5, 1836. Captain Wyly's Company was omitted from the General San Jacinto muster rolls originally prepared by Adjutant General John A. Wharton. Wharton, however, on May 16, 1836 submitted the roll with this statement, found on page 140 of the army rolls in the General Land Office: I do hereby certify that owing to an oversight of the proper officers, within report was not hand to the Adjutant General in time to accompany the report to the Commander-in-Chief, and further that Captain Wyly's Company should have been reported as having participated in the Battle of San Jacinto.

Captain Wyly was issued Donation Certificate No. 124 for 640 acres of land October 13, 1848 for having participated in the Battle of San Jacinto.

The compiler has been unable to learn when Captain Wyly came to Texas. In compliance with an act of the Legislature approved August 6, 1856, Headright Certificate No. 4146 for one-third of a league of land was issued to him August 19, 1856 but in the certificate the date of his emigration is not shown.

Captain Wyly was married to a widow, Mrs. Josephine Louise (Burk) William, and to them the following children were born: Josephine, Mrs. Alex Melson, Richard, Mrs. J. M Nichols, and R.E. Wyly. In 1931 Mrs. Nichols and R.E. Wyly lived in Pickton, Hopkins County, Texas and Mrs. Alex Melson lived in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Captain Wyly died in Hempstead, Waller County, May 11, 1867 and was buried in the cemetery there. Mrs. Wyly at her death (date unknown to the writer) was buried at Pickton, Hopkins County.

On May 9, 1880, Mrs. Josephine L. Wyly, made application for a bounty of land as the widow of Captain Wyly. In her petition she stated that Captain Wyly served in the army from March 20 to July 24, 1836. She gave May 11, 1867 as the date of the death of Captain Wyly. Mrs. Wyly was at that time living in Hopkins County but she did not state where Captain Wyly died. Her claim was allowed and she was granted 320 acres of land.

The following letter dated Sulphur Springs, Texas, March 17, l931, from Mr. C.O. James, Attorney-at-Law, was addressed to L. W. Kemp, at Houston: "The county clerk, Mr. Kitts, turned your letter over to me for reply, concerning Captain Wyly. My oldest brother, W.B. James, now dead, married a daughter of Captain Wyly, and she now lives at Pickton, Texas, this county, and is the wife of J.M. Nichols, at that place. Captain Wyly also has a son, R.E. Wyly, now living at Pickton. The oldest Wyly child lived in Oklahoma City, a Mrs. Alex Melson, whose address, I do not know. I knew Captain Wyly's widow, but she is long since dead. She was a remarkable woman, most highly educated. I remember seeing a letter written to Captain Wyly, in the own handwriting of General Rusk, which they used to exhibit, but of late I have been trying to see if they could find the letter, but no one seems to know about it.

They were a fine family of people. Captain Wyly married his wife, Josephine Williams Wyly, when she was a widow, Mrs. Williams. They had an old slave negress named Fan who died at Panhandle City, out near Amarillo. If you would write to Mrs. Minnie Sims at Pan Handle City, she might give you some information. This old negress died with them, there. I know Captain Wyly was in this battle, for the reason I recollect the letter from Thomas J. Rusk. Horace James, a nephew of mine lives here, and he is a grandson of Captain Wyly. I trust this will give you a "starter" so you can get something worth while for your work. With great respect, and wishing you success. I am sincerely, (signed) C.O. JAMES" WYLY, ALFRED HENDERSON-- He came to Texas in January, 1836.

Major Leander Smith had recruited a number of men for the army of Texas and was with them at Harrisburg when the cannons "Twin Sisters' were brought there from Cincinnati. With Major Smith he transported the guns to the main army then stationed at the plantation of Leonard W. Groce on the Brazos. (See the sketch of Stephen F. Sparks in this volume). That Major Smith was at Harrisburg April 1, 1836, is shown in Comptroller's Military Service Record 479. On that date he signed the following receipt there: "Received of Edward Gritton a small American horse to go on public service, which shall be returned when the duty for which he is pressed shall be performed."

Among the muster rolls in the General Land Office is one of Major Smith's at muster April 5, 1836. Many of the men shown on the roll served in Captain Wyly's Company at San Jacinto.

The names of Captain Wyly and those of the men of his company were omitted from the official rolls as printed in 1836. The muster roll of his company, however, is among the San Jacinto rolls at the General Land Office. It was submitted May 16, 1836, by Adjutant General John A. Wharton with the following explanation: "I do hereby certify that owing to an oversight of the proper officers, the within report was not handed to the Adjutant General in time to accompany the report to the Commander-in-Chief, and further that Capt. Wyly's Company should have been reported as having participated in the Battle of San Jacinto."

On Captain Wyly's roll as submitted by Adjutant General Wharton are the names of five men who are shown on other rolls. These are Joseph Doan of Fisher's Company; Philip Stroh and Joseph Miller and Andrew Fogle of Baker's Company and Robert Hood of Captain Billingsley's Company. The compiler is assuming that due to the small number of troops in Captain Wyly's command, the men mentioned were attached to his company for the battle. Their names have, accordingly, been removed from the rolls of the other companies.

In Comptroller's Military Service Record No. 1106 issued to William Cartwright, Captain Wyly signed his name as a Captain of the First Regiment of Texas Volunteers. On October 3, 1848, Captain Wyly was issued Donation Certificate No. 124 for 640 acres of land for having participated in the Battle of San Jacinto. His widow, Mrs. Josephine Wyly, on May 8, 1880, in her petition for a Veteran's Donation Certificate, stated that he served in the army from March 20 to July 24, 1836.

Captain Wyly was married to Mrs. Josephine Louise (Burk) Williams. According to the statement of Mrs. Wyly, Captain Wyly died May 11, 1867. His death occurred at Hempstead, Waller County. Mrs. Wyly died in Pickton, Hopkins County. Captain and Mrs. Wyly resided in Rusk County for a number of years and in 1855-56 Captain Wyly was a member of Clinton Masonic Lodge No. 23 at Henderson.

Children of Captain and Mrs. Wyly were (l) Josephine, at this time it is unknown if she married; (2)Name unknown, married Alexander Melson and lived in Oklahoma City; (3) Richard, at this time it is unknown if he married; (4) Name unknown, married J.M. Nichols and lived in Pickton, Texas; (5) R.E. Wyly, married-name unknown at this time, lived in Pickton, Texas.

Notes: R.W. Wiley lived at Athens, Henderson Co. Representative 11th Legislature aged 50. Born in North Carolina.

Wyly signed name as Captain of A Company of Second Regiment with Wharton's report.

Captain A. H. Wyly: Men on Captain Wyly's roll were: A.H. Wyly; H.B. Balch; J.A. Hueser; F. Hickos; John Balch; Jas. Doan; Wm. Gammell; Philip Stowe; Jos. Miller; Robert Hood; Andrew Fogle; Lewis Kratz; Augustus Henderstron; Dr. Tobias Duhrower; of these the following fought in other companies: Joseph Doan-Fisher's Company; Philip Stowe-Baker's Company; Joseph Miller-Baker's Company; Robert Hood-Billingsley's Company.

On page 65 of the Land Office Rolls the following names are listed under the caption: "Return of men raised for 3 months by Major L. Smith, April 5, 1836." 1. Daniel Sayers 2. Wm. O. Blanton 3. Robt. Hood 4. Henry M. Brewer 5. Thomas Byley 6. Henry Chapman 7. Zacaheriah M. 8. Wm. Gammell 9. F. Hickox 10. John Barker 11. Michael Short 12. ___ Stebbins 13. Redd --of Georgia 14. William Gould 15. J. Hunter 16. John Frederick Wiehl 17. Joseph Doan 18. Jas. T. White 19. Levi Howard 20. August Henderstrong 21. Ulyses Roberts 22. H.B. Balch 23. A.H. Wyler 24. Wm. Bernbeck 25. A. Vogel 26. Philip Straugh 27. ___ Miller 28. T. Dumbromer 29. James McCocklin 30. name unknown



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: Captain
  • Company: Second Regiment Texas Volunteers

Personal Statistics

  • Came to Texas: 1836 Jan
  • Date of Death: 1867 May 11
  • Burial Place: Hempstead, Waller County, Texas
  • Donation Certificate: 124
  • Wife: Josephine Louise Burk Williams
  • Children: Josephine Wyly; Wyly Melson ?; Richard Wyly; Wyly James Nichols ?; R. E. Wyly


Related Artifacts

 
 

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