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Kerrville in Kerr County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

James Kerr

(1790-1850)

 
 
James Kerr Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Cosmos Mariner, May 28, 2014
1. James Kerr Marker
Inscription.  

Kentucky native James Kerr, the son of a Baptist minister, was reared in Missouri. Kerr fought in the War of 1812 and was later sheriff of St. Charles County, Missouri. He married Angeline Caldwell in 1818 and served in the Missouri Senate and House of Representatives. Kerr was appointed Surveyor General of the Texas colony of Green DeWitt in 1825. With his wife, three children and several slaves, he joined Stephen F. Austin's "Old Three Hundred" colony in Brazoria. In August 1825 he set out to select a site for the DeWitt colony. Kerr named the community Gonzales in honor of the governor of Coahuila, Mexico. By this time, Angeline Kerr and two of the children had passed away.

Kerr was active in area politics and law enforcement during the formative years of the Republic of Texas. He acted as attorney and surveyor for Benjamin Rush Milam in 1827. He negotiated for peace before the Fredonian Rebellion, signed a treaty with the Karankawa Indians and fought other tribes. He was the Lavaca delegate at the Convention at San Felipe de Austin in 1832 and served as a member of the Second and Third Conventions. Two years later, he married
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Sarah Fulton. He became a major in the Texas Rangers in 1835 and in the Republic of Texas army in 1836. He was elected to the Third Texas Congress in 1838.

Kerr's later years were spent practicing medicine in Jackson County. In 1856, pioneer Joshua Brown gave the land around this site in order that Kerr County be named for his longtime friend, Texas frontiersman and patriot James Kerr.
 
Erected 2000 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 12322.)
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Settlements & SettlersWar of 1812War, Texas IndependenceWars, US Indian.
 
Location. 30° 2.836′ N, 99° 8.377′ W. Marker is in Kerrville, Texas, in Kerr County. Marker is on Main Street north of Earl Garrett Street, on the right when traveling north. Marker is located in plaza in front of the Kerr County Courthouse, between the parking lot and the main entrance. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 700 Main Street, Kerrville TX 78028, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Kerr County (here, next to this marker); Early Settlers of Kerr County (here, next to this marker); Bocock Civil War Cannon (within shouting distance of this marker); Kerr County War Memorial
James Kerr Marker, on the right in this group of three markers image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Kayla Harper, November 28, 2019
2. James Kerr Marker, on the right in this group of three markers
(within shouting distance of this marker); Joshua D. Brown (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Charles A. Schreiner (about 300 feet away); Guthrie Building (about 300 feet away); Kerrville Mountain Sun (about 300 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Kerrville.
 
Also see . . .
1. James Kerr.
Though he was admired and respected by his associates, even his family members admitted that he was not much for looks. One day when he was visiting a saloon, a homely stranger approached him and announced, "I'm sorry, but I'm going to have to kill you." Kerr calmly asked the man why such drastic action was necessary, whereupon the visitor explained, "I have always said if I ever saw a man uglier than I am, that I was going to shoot him." Kerr invited the man over to the window and, after inspecting the man in the daylight, wryly commented: "Shoot away, stranger, if I'm any uglier than you I don't care to live!" Kerr spent his last years practicing medicine. On December 25, 1850, he died in his Jackson County home. In 1856 Kerr County was named in his honor. (Submitted on December 9, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
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2. Transcript of Letter from James Kerr to Stephen F. Austin, August 5, 1830.
Copy of transcript for a letter from James Kerr to Stephen F. Austin in which Kerr informs Austin that Capt. Chrisman delegated the task of surveying a piece of land to Kerr. (Submitted on December 9, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 1, 2019. It was originally submitted on December 9, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 376 times since then and 62 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on December 9, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.   2. submitted on November 30, 2019, by Kayla Harper of Dallas, Texas. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.

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Jul. 21, 2024