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

Veteran Bio

Texian Location:  Participant

The Kemp Sketch

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COOK, JAMES R. -- Born in the Territory of Alabama, a son of Nathan and Harriat Anthony (Herbert) Cook. One of his grandmothers, Ellen (Hampton) Cook, was a daughter of Henry Hampton, brother of Wade Hampton of South Carolina. His other grandmother, Elizabeth (Hampton) Herbert, was a daughter of Edward Hampton, brother of Wade Hampton.

John Cook, grandfather of James R. Cook, was born in South Carolina of English parents. He was married to Ellen Hampton. Nathan Cooke, a son of John and Ellen (Hampton) Cook was married to Harriet Anthony Herbert, daughter of John and Elizabeth (Hampton) Herbert.

Nathan Cook, father of James R. Cook, was reared and educated in the State of his birth, in what was then the Territory of Mississippi, but is now embraced in the State of Alabama. He mainly educated himself by study at home, was admitted to the bar in Alabama and served as a Judge for more than twenty years. He died in Alabama in 1888, his wife having died many years previous.

James R. Cook came to Texas in December, 1835, as is stated in the Headright Certificate issued to him February 1, 1838 for one-third of a league of land. In Service Record No. 7475 it is certified that he served in Captain Peton S. Wyatt's Company from December 28, 1835 to March 20, 1836, when he was elected First Lieutenant in Captain Henry W. Karnes' Company of cavalry, being discharged June 5, 1836. From June 5 to November 1, 1836, he acted as a Captain of Cavalry. On May 18, 1838 he was issued a Donation Certificate for 640 acres of land for having participated in the battle of San Jacinto. On December 14, 1838 he received Bounty Certificate No. 3079 for 960 acres of land for having served in the army from December 25, 1835 to November 1, 1836.

The minutes of the Constitutional Convention at Washington of March 6, 1836 show that Captain Cook "was invited to take a seat within the bar of the convention, in testimony of the regard for the services he has rendered Texas in her struggle for freedom."

Captain Cook was elected Colonel of a regiment in the Somervell Expedition in 1842.

In an altercation with a former friend, a Mr. Adkins, Colonel Cook was shot and killed at Washington, Texas, March 31, 1843. The Telegraph and Texas Register carried an account of his death.

Colonel Cook married to Sarah Ann Lott in Washington County, December 20, 1838. Mrs. Cook's father was one of the first settlers in the town of Washington. The Probate Records of Washington County show that Mrs. Cook died in that county in 1866.

Colonel and Mrs. Cook had two sons, both alive in 1894, John F., living in Texas and James Cook of Louisiana.

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: First Lieutenant
  • Company: Capt. Henry Wax Karnes

Personal Statistics

  • Alternate Names: Cooke, James Russell
  • Date of Birth: 1812 May 8
  • Birthplace: Georgia, Jones County, Clinton
  • Origin: Alabama
  • Came to Texas: 1835 Dec
  • Date of Death: 1843 Mar 30
  • Burial Place: Farquhar Cemetery, Washington County, Texas
  • Comments: Somervell Expedition
  • Bounty Certificate: 3079
  • Profession: Farmer
  • Wife: Sarah Ann Lott
  • Children: John W. Cook; James Russell Cook