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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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SANDERS, JOHN - Born in Brownsville, Haywood County, Tennessee May 6, 1816, and emigrated to Texas in December, 1835. With other immigrants he located in the eastern portion of the present county of Shelby and established what is known as "old East Hamilton." He enlisted in Henry Teal's Company at Nacogdoches January 8, 1836, for a period of two years and was a member of Captain Teal's Company at San Jacinto. He received Donation Certificate No. 191 December 26, 1849, for 640 acres of land for having participated in the battle. When discharged November 23, 1837, he was a member of Captain Jacob Snively's Company He did not receive the bounty land due him for his services in the army.

Mr. Sanders returned to Tennessee and in 1838 he was married to Rachael Willingham. With his wife he returned to Shelby County, Texas. A Headright Certificate for a league and labor of land was issued to him in compliance with an Act of the Legislature approved February 4, 1844. (Note: Texas 1835 H R No. 390 L & L San Augustine)

When Mr. Sanders returned to Texas his parents Robert and Sarah D. Sanders came with him to make Texas their future home. Mr. Sanders was born April 25, 1790 and died January 8, 1856. Sarah D. Sanders was born September 4, 1786 and died November 12, 1852. The two are buried in Fairview cemetery at Center.

John Sanders, subject of this sketch, died August 5, 187l. Mrs. Sanders was born in Brownsville, Haywood County, Tennessee, May 3, 1820, died June 4, 1881. Their graves in Fairview Cemetery at Center, Shelby County, are marked. Children of Mr. and Mrs. Sanders were (1) John Sanders, Jr., (2) R. J., (3) Ellen (4) Bettie, (5) Eliza (6) James (7) A. E. and, (8) Susan Sanders.

The following are copies of the furlough and discharge granted to Mr. Sanders, as found in the Memorials and Petitions, Archives, Texas State Library:

"The Bearer John Saunders a Member of Capt. Irvins Company (A) first Regiment of Infantry, Aged Twenty Years, five feet nine inches high fair complexion Blue eyes & Brown hair, by profession a Farmer & Enlisted at Nacogdoches on the 8 January 1836 in the Service of Texas, is hereby furloughed from the Head Quarters of the Army of Texas, until the President of the Republic shall issue his proclamation for all soldiers on furlough to join their Respective Regiment, Corps, or Company, then should the said John Sanders be without the limits of the Republic a period of days will be allowed for him to respond to the call & if within the bounds of the Republic, forthwith to comply with the proclamation, in failure whereof he will be reported a deserter, no excuse except a certificate of a Surgeon for sickness will be received for a violation of this furlough.

Subsistence has been issued to the said John Sanders to the 30th day of May 1837. And Pay due him from enlistment.

Given under my hand at Camp Bowie this 30th day of May 1837

Sam B Carson 1st Lieut. Commd (A) Comp Barton H Peek Capt. Comdg 1st Inf.

Republic of Texas


KNOW YE, that the bearer hereof, John Sanders, a private in Captain Snively's Company (A) 1st Regiment of Infantry aged _______ years,______feet______inches high, of ______ complexion,______ hair, and by profession a _____ who enlisted on the 8th day of January 1836 to serve for the period of during the way having faithfully performed his duty as a soldier, is hereby HONORABLY DISCHARGED from the army of the Republic of Texas, haveing been in the Battle of San Jacinto

Houston Nov 23rd 1837 (Duplicate) Barnard E Bee Secy of War

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. Andrew Briscoe

Personal Statistics

  • Alternate Names: Saunders
  • Date of Birth: 1816 May 6
  • Birthplace: Tennessee, Haywood County, Brownsville
  • Came to Texas: 1835 Dec
  • Date of Death: 1871 Aug 5
  • Burial Place: Fairview Cemetery, Center, Shelby County, Texas
  • Donation Certificate: 191
  • Wife: Rachael Willingham
  • Children: John Sanders; R. J. Sanders; Ellen Sanders Wilburn; Bettie Sanders Wilburn Osborn Jones; Eliza Sanders McCauley; James Sanders; A. E. Sanders; Susan Sanders