Part of an old map of the San Jacinto area from the Texas Revolution

Veteran Bio

Texian Location:  Harrisburg

The Kemp Sketch

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KEMP, THOMAS - Issued a Headright Certificate for one-third of a league of land from the Harrisburg County Board, February 24, 1838. The land was surveyed in Goliad District, Karnes County in 1839 on the waters of Medio.

He came to Texas in December, 1835.

KEMP, THOMAS -- Member of Captain Thomas H. Breece’s Company in the siege of Bexar in 1835. He was a member of Captain David N. Burke’s Company of “Mobile Greys” in the battle of Coleto and was among the three hundred and thirty, or more, who were led out to be shot at La Bahia March 27, 1836. Mr. Kemp was among the few who escaped. He made his way to the main army and, no doubt, due to the many hardships he had endured he was left at the camp opposite Harrisburg April 21, 1836.

Mr. Kemp was issued Bounty Certificate No. 2601 for 640 acres of land March 10, 1838 for having served in the army from October 16, 1835 to May 8, 1836. The certificate had been assigned to Benjamin F. Smith. He rejoined the army, December 12, 1836, and served until January 12, 1837. For this service he was issued Bounty Certificate No. 2501 for 640 acres of land. He was living in Jackson County March 28, 1838, when he sold the certificate to Thomas Simmons.

Mr. Kemp was issued Donation Certificate No. 79 for 640 acres of land May 15, 1838, for having been detailed to guard thebaggage at the camp opposite Harrisburg, April 21, 1836. The land was surveyed in the Bexar Land District.

Thomas Kemp was born in St. Helena Parish, Louisiana, a son of Isaac Kemp. Isaac Kemp was a brother of Caleb Kemp who came to Texas in 1829. Jonathan Kemp, borther of Thomas Kemp, came to Texas in 1830, and it is thought Thomas came with him, but this is not positively known. Thomas Kemp was married to Miss Eliza Scott at Houston, September 18, 1851 by Rev. W. B. Reeves. Shortly after their marriage they moved to Monroe, Louisiana, where on August 9, 1852, a son, Clarence De Lanenour Kemp was born. In February, 1853, the family moved to Texas and settled in Caney Creek. There Thomas Kemp died about the year 1854. His widow died at Wharton in 1905.

Clarence D. Kemp, son of Thomas Kemp, was married to Sarah Jane Crawford at Waterville, Wharton County, Texas, January 26, 1875. Miss Crawford was born June 25, 1857, in Wharton County. She was a daughter of William and Sarah Crawford. Children of Mr. and Mrs. Clarence D. Kemp were (1) Hattie Sarah Kemp, who married S. W. Cates. Mr. and Mrs. Cates reside at Iago, Texas; (2) Nettie Laura Kemp, who died young; and (3) Taylor Dickson Kemp, who married Jeffy Ray Smith. Mr. and Mrs. Kemp and their children, Taylor, Jr., Clarence, James and Sarah Jane reside in Wharton.

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
  • Company: detailed to guard baggage

Personal Statistics

  • Birthplace: Louisiana, St. Helena Parish
  • Came to Texas: 1835 Dec
  • Date of Death: 1854
  • Other Battles: Bexar, Coleto
  • Bounty Certificate: 2601
  • Donation Certificate: 79
  • Wife: Eliza Scott
  • Children: Clarence De Lanenour Kemp; Telitha Kemp McMahon