The Kemp Sketch
McFADIN, DAVID HUTCHESON -- Born in Montgomery County, Tennessee, May 22, 1816, the only child of William and Sarah (Jett) McFadin, both of whom were born in Tennessee. On August 5, 1835 William McFadin received title to a league of land in Vehlein's Colony situated in what is now Polk County. In the Headright Certificate issued to David H. McFadin, by the Jefferson County Board of Land Commissioners for a league and labor of land it is stated that he arrived in Texas in 1834.
Mr. McFadin was issued Bounty Certificate No. 1007 for 640 acres of land January 14, 1852 for having served in the army from March 6 to September 2, 1836. He was a member of Captain William M. Logan's Company at San Jacinto and on January 14, 1839 was issued Donation Certificate No. 748 for 640 acres of land for having participated in the battle.
In 1842 he was elected Sheriff of Jefferson County. Mr. McFadin was married to Jerusha Dyches, daughter of Joseph Dyches, at the home of the bride's parents in Jefferson County, March 19, 1838. They moved to Williamson County and in 1858 Mr. McFadin and a Mr. Gillette erected a mill on the San Gabriel river. In that year William Durgan began constructing a stone residence for Mr. McFadin on a bank of the river about two miles below the present town of Circleville. Mrs. McFadin was born in Louisiana and died July 7, 1880. In 1881 Mr. McFadin was married to Mrs. Cordelia Kendrick Finnin-Armstrong. She was born in Harrison County, Kentucky January 5, 1822. Her father was Major James O'Burke Kendrick who was born August, 15, 1786, in Virginia, and died at Palmyra, Missouri, September 23, 1840. Major Kenrick served in the War of 1812, in the Kentucky Militia, and was wounded in the defense of Fort Meigs in May, 1813. Cordelia Kendrick first married Michael Finnin, December 18, 1837, at Palmyra, Missouri. Michael Finnin was killed by a gunshot wound in Aberdeen, Mississippi, May 13, 1854. She next married James Armstrong, September 11, 1856, at Austin. After the death of her second husband she was married to Mr. McFadin. She died June 9, 1892 and was buried in the cemetery at Georgetown. Mr. McFadin died August 7, 1896 and is buried beside his first wife in the family cemetery near their former home, Circleville, Williamson County. Mr. McFadin was a member of the Texas Veterans Association. He was a cousin of William McFadin, who also served in the Texas Army in 1836.
"EARLY HISTORIC HOME OF A TEXAS PIONEER" The old Colonial home of Mr. and Mrs. David Hutchenson McFadin on the banks of the San Gabriel River, six miles north of Taylor, in Williamson County, is still standing, like a veritable fortress, the walls inside and out are said to be twenty-seven inches thick, built as a protection against the ever present danger of raids by bands of marauding Indians.
Mr. McFadin was born in Montgomery County, Tennessee, May 22, 1816. At the age of twelve he moved with his parents to Texas in 1828, settling in one of the few civilized settlements in Liberty County. At that time Texas was a Republic. After helping his father to open up a farm, this self-reliant and independent young David started out on his own account. When the Indians became so annoying to the settlers, it was necessary to do something for their protection so he joined the army March 6th (sixth) under the command of General Sam Houston and was a member of Captain William Logan's Company when the decisive battle of San Jacinto was fought on April 21st, Santa Anna captured, and Texas freed from Mexico.
After the Battle of San Jacinto, David was still in his 19th year, he reached his 20th birthday on the 22nd of May 1836 and served in the Texas army for six months after which time he returned to his parents home in Liberty County. In November 1836 he was married to Miss Jerusha Dyches, a native of Louisiana, and a daughter of Joseph Dyches, a well-known Pioneer. She came to Texas in 1832. There are written tales of courage and strength in the face of odds; these historic stories will keep the pages of history alive for all time, yet, too often the narrators of these tales overlook that same staunch "Early Settler"--the Pioneer Woman.
Unheralded and unsung, the Pioneer women defied danger and in spite of deeds that rivaled the most valorous of the pioneer men, she just as nobly bore the hardships and reared her children in the midst of all the trying hardships. Their biographies, had they been written, would have been dramatic and more stirring than a fiction writer can ever conceive.
Jerusha Dyches McFadin, who was a PIONEER WOMAN, possessed great force of character with superior ability, and was well fitted to become the companion of a man who had his fortune to make in a frontier country. David H. and Jerusha Dyches McFadin had eight children, but only thee of them attained maturity. Of the three, John N. McFadin was the eldest son, born August 11, 1838, and was an outstanding citizen of the same community. He was married to Mollie Teague Sherman, born April 11, 1843, and they had ten children, eight of them still living at the date of this writing, February 6, 1941.
William D., born in 1840, never returned after the Civil War and it was presumed he was killed as he was never heard from, and Irvin A., born in January 1842, was married in 1863 to Elizabeth M. Moore, and had four children, two of them living at this date, February 6th, 1941.
David McFadin traded with his cousin William McFadin, for a headright of land in what is now Williamson County, and in December 1846 he removed with his family to this landed estate and began the task of making it a permanent home. He was a real Pioneer of this section of the state, having ridden horseback with another man over Williamson County, he located at an ever-lasting spring of water and settled there on the San Gabriel River.
He cultivated his land and engaged extensively in the stock business, he was successful in his undertakings and prosperity smiled on his endeavors.
They first lived in a Log Cabin but immediately set about collecting rock, quarried from the surrounding hills and having it hauled to the spot where the old stone house, a land mark of that section of the State now stands. The building of the house was soon started and it was ready for occupancy some time in the 1850's. The wood used in its construction, oak, walnut and cedar, was hauled more than 200 miles by ox wagon across country from Houston, Texas.
The house reflects the architecture of the Old South, with its tall-pillared front porch and dignified lines; this home was known for its hospitality extended to its guests in true southern style, among them were many prominent men who had the future of a new country at heart. This noble old house was made a welcome retreat and asylum for weary travelers up to the time of Mr. McFadin's death, October 7th, 1896. It also offered helpful assistance and service to the officers and men being recruited for service in the Civil War.
The approach to the house was under an old fashioned arbor of roses. At the "rockspring-house" was kept the milk and food which was almost icy-cold from the spring-water which flowed through. The making of shrines of these old homes and preserving them for posterity is a most worthy work which should be the willing objective of the descendants and admirers of Texas Pioneers. Immediate interest in the preservation of this historical heritage must come if it is to be of value, other-wise these old land marks will have fallen. It seems irrelevant that a house which was so much a part of the background of the Texas Commonwealth should be allowed to crumble and be lost to the state and county, rather it should seen that it be made a shrine for school children, students of history and those who revere ancient land marks.
Destruction of these Pioneer homes will rob our great commonwealth of much historic charm and the rising generations will have few reminders of those who possessed faith in the frontier country and were willing to risk their lives and their substance in founding a new settlement.
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
- Rank: Private
- Company: Capt. William M. Logan
- Alternate Names: McFadden, McFaddin; Hutchenson, Hutchinson, Hutcheson
- Date of Birth: 1816 May 22
- Birthplace: Tennessee, Montgomery County
- Came to Texas: 1834
- Date of Death: 1896 Aug 7
- Burial Place: Circleville, Williamson County, Texas
- Bounty Certificate: 1007
- Donation Certificate: 748
- Wife: 1. Jerusha Dyches; 2. Cordelia Kendrick Finnin Armstrong
- Children: John N. McFadin; William D. McFadin; Irvin A. McFadin; Sidney McFadin; George McFadin; Sarah McFadin; 2 others who died in infancy