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

Veteran Bio

Texian Location:  Participant

The Kemp Sketch

(What is this?) | Download the original typescript

TUMLINSON, JOHN JAMES -- Probably a son of Joseph and Elizabeth Tumlinson. Mrs. Tumlinson, as a widow, on August 16, 1824 received title to one league and one labor of land in Austin's first colony. A part of the town of Columbus, Colorado County was later surveyed on her land. On December 19, 1833 the land was partitioned to the six heirs of Mrs. Tumlinson, Joseph, Thomas C., John James, and Elizabeth Tumlinson, a Mrs. Bostick and an absent heir.

Captain John J. Tumlinson was born in Tennessee and came to Texas in November, 1821. He was married and had three sons. Altho he settled on the Colorado he on December 8, 1831 received title to one league of land in De Witt's Colony situated in the present county of De Witt. On 1838 he was issued Headright Certificate No. 314 for one labor (?) of land by the Board of Land Commissioners for _______ County. The land was surveyed in Rusk and Fannin Counties.

Captain Tumlinson (who signed his name simply as "John") was Alcalde of the Colorado District in 1823. That he was a married man with a family is stated in a letter he wrote to Baron de Bastrop, from "Colorado 5th March 1823". In it he said:

A few complain of the expence which I thought as reasonable. As could be allowed for the time and trouble of so disagreeable an office, to wit at the rate of five cents per Mile, as for own part I have not yet made a charge for my own service and time which you know is Valuable to a man a new country with a large family --- (The Austin Papers, Vol. 2, Part 1, page 583.)

Captain Tumlinson was appointed a captain in the corps of rangers by the General Council of the Provisional Government, November 28, 1835. He participated in the Storming and Capture of Bexar, December 5 to 10, 1835 and in the battle of San Jacinto. At San Jacinto he was a member of Captain William J. E. Heard's Company of "Citizen Volunteers."

In Comptroller's Military Service Record No. 436 it is certified that Captain Tumlinson was elected captain of a company of rangers February 25, 1836, serving as such until April 18. In Comptroller's Military Service Record No. 961 it is shown that he served in Captain William J. E. Heard's Company from February 25 to May 25, 1836. He was issued Bounty Certificate No. 1783 for 1280 acres of land, January 12, 1838 for having served in the army from November 28, 1835 to August 27, 1836. On December 28, 1838 he was issued Donation Certificate No. 722 for 640 acres of land for having participated in the Storming and Capture of Bexar, December 5 to 10, 1835. Having received one donation Certificate he was not issued one for having participated in the battle of San Jacinto. On July 13, 1838 he received Bounty Certificate No. 4048 for 320 acres for having served from February 25 to May 25, 1836.

While living in Bastrop County, October 11, 1838 Captain Tumlinson sold Certificate No. 1783 to Thomas Kenney for $400.

Captain Tumlinson commanded the volunteer company of rangers that fought Indians August 9, 1840. The savages had on the previous day burned Linville, Calhoun County, after murdering many of its citizens and plundering their homes.

Land on Donation Certificate No. 722 was surveyed in Hill County, April 9, 1859, but it has not been ascertained whether or not Captain Tumlinson was alive at that time.

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. William J. E. Heard

Personal Statistics

  • Alternate Names: John James; John Jackson
  • Birthplace: Tennessee
  • Came to Texas: 1821
  • Other Battles: Bexar
  • Comments: Information on John James and John Jackson Tumlinson may be confused.
  • Bounty Certificate: 4048
  • Donation Certificate: 107