Texas General Land Office
A muster roll is a register of all soldiers in a company,
who are present or
accounted for on a particular day, or for a period of time. The
commander of the company, usually a captain, was required to sign
the muster roll, pledging on his honor that the roll correctly
represented the true military service of all men in the company.
The original muster roll was then sent to the Texas Adjutant
General's Office as a record of the men's military service. A
copy, made at the same time and often signed by the captain, might
be kept for the captain's use. Muster rolls for much of the period of
the Revolution (1835-1836) were reconstructed later by members of
the companies and filed with the Adjutant General's Office.
Most of the original rolls and lists were lost in a fire in the
Adjutant General's Office, October 10, 1855. Surviving muster
rolls can be found in the Texas State Library and Archives (Adjutant
General's Records) and other libraries and archives.
Fortunately, many of the original muster rolls were copied before
the fire. Bound volumes of these copies are in the Texas General
Land Office (TGLO) in Austin.
In 1986, the Daughters of the Republic of Texas published
MUSTER ROLLS OF THE TEXAS REVOLUTION [T1], which included
transcription of the TGLO Volume, MUSTER ROLLS #2
(1856/1857) ("MR#2") [see Archive Reference A3], containing copies of rolls for service
between 1835 and 1838.
In 1996, Michael T. Moore, Archivist of the TGLO, rediscovered
another book of Republic of Texas muster rolls in their
collection. This book, now known as MUSTER ROLLS #1
1850 ("MR#1") [A2], provides earlier copies of
original rolls and lists of the commands of Fannin, Ward, Travis,
Grant, and Johnson during 1835-1836, and the first-known copy
of a muster roll of Capt. Thomas Lewellyn's Company. MR#1 was
apparently misplaced or overlooked in 1986 when the Daughters of
the Republic of Texas transcribed MR#2.
MR#1 was last mentioned in Thomas Lloyd Miller's 1967 book,
BOUNTY AND DONATION LAND GRANTS OF TEXAS, 1835-1888
[T18, p. 33], but was not listed with his TGLO sources. His
"By a joint resolution of Congress of May 24, 1838, a special headright
was granted to the heirs of those who fell with Fannin, Travis, Grant,
and Johnson in the spring of 1836. The resolution declared that a
statement by the Secretary of War should be sufficient evidence for
the board of land commissioners of each county to issue the headright
[Gammel, THE LAWS OF TEXAS, I, p.1520, now online]. Apparently the boards had
some difficulty in carrying out the provisions of this law, for an
act of February 9, 1850, required the Adjutant General to make a list
from the muster roll of those who fell with Fannin, Ward, Travis,
Grant, and Johnson and to file it with the commissioner of the General
Land Office. This muster roll is preserved in the Land Office."
MR#1 was used also by Harbert Davenport in 1936 for his study of
the men of Fannin's command [T19]. Davenport referred to the
contents of MR#1, but did not identify it as a separate volume.
Most of the rolls and lists in MR#1 appear to be copies of the
same original rolls and lists that were copied in MUSTER ROLLS #2,
with small differences in names, name spelling, and notations,
some of which appear to have been added in later years.
The online NOTE page for each roll transcription includes a
name-by-name comparison with the similar roll in the 1986 DRT
transcription [T1]. Additional rolls and
lists in MR #1 not found elsewhere are:
- A list of names from the
Record Book of Foreign Volunteers not placed
upon the original muster rolls in the Adjutant General's Office.
The Record Book of Foreign Volunteers is believed to have been
lost in the 1855 fire.
- A muster roll of Capt. Thomas Lewellyn's Company of the
Johnson and Grant Expedition (Matamoros Expedition).
Many of the rolls in MR #1 have had initials added or names
changed in another hand. (These modifications have been noted in
the transcriptions.) Notes on land certificates issued have been
added to some names, also in another hand.
MUSTER ROLLS #1 1850
The following is a description of MR#1, from Michael
This copy of the muster rolls is contained in a manuscript book
(275 mm x 424 mm) in the TGLO Archives consisting of the following
- A. Name Index (smaller than the other sections: 197 mm x 315
mm), blue paper with red vertical rules added. Ten leaves. Two
sections. Section two begins on page 6 with the title: "Index of
Names not appearing in Record of Muster Rolls." The last five
pages are blank.
- B. Name Index of commanders, 2 pages, blue lined paper with
red vertical rules added.
- C. Copies of muster rolls, white paper 31 leaves, including
insertions and blank pages, with additional documents glued in.
This copy is certified by Benjamin Hill, adjutant general, March
11, 1850 (seal of the adjutant general is attached). The
additional documents date from 1851 to 1856.
- D. Copy of section C, 33 leaves, blue lined paper with red
vertical rules added. Leaves 29-31 list donation certificates
issued 1850-1854. Certified by Stephen Crosby, land commissioner,
on verso of 31 as a copy of the "copies of the muster rolls of the
several companies that were under the command of Fannin and Ward,
and the list of names of those who fell in the Alamo with Travis,
and the list of those who fell with Grant and under the command of
Johnson, during the war with Mexico.... filed in this office in
accordance with the provisions of 'an Act for the relief of the
heirs of those who fell with Fannin, Ward, Travis, Grant and
Johnson...'" October 7, 1850.
The following is an explanation by Moore with a few additions
in square brackets.
"We have essentially two books: one made in 1856 [A3], which
includes statements that suggest that at least some of these were
copied from documents obtained by the Court of Claims in 1856; the
other book [MUSTER ROLLS #1 1850] was clearly made in 1850 by the
Adjutant General specifically for the TGLO."
"The DRT used the 1856 book, which was probably made specifically
for the Court of Claims and came to us along with the Court's
records in 1861. The TGLO was also directed to copy its muster
rolls (the 1850 book) for the Court of Claims, which would appear
to be the 'blue section' [Section D] of the 1850 book (now bound
with the original), signed and certified by Stephen J. Crosby.
Since the Court had this copy of the 1850 TGLO book, they probably
just didn't bother to add the additional names into the 1856 book
and the blue section has a note stating: 'Index of names not
appearing in record of muster rolls' (presumably a reference to
the 1856 book)."
Transcription of MUSTER ROLLS #1 1850, Section C
This online Index contains a complete transcription of Section C
of MR#1. The online transcription is separated by
military list or roll in the muster roll group, "Revolution
and Following Year 1835-1837", starting with the first listing of
Col. J.W. Fannin, Jr.'s
command. Transcription of the notes attached to some leaves (see
below) can be found with the associated commander's roll.
While a reader is viewing the pages of the group "Revolution and
Following Year 1835-1837", the
browser's FIND function can be used to search for "A2", which will
locate all parts of the transcription of Section C.
Additions and rebinding of the material in Section C have
changed the original order of the copies so that the page
numbers are no longer sequential. The following is the present
order of the leaves in Section C, with two sets of old page numbers noted.
Old circled page numbers have been transcribed within parentheses.
Leaf Old Page
37 (1) Note re Stephen Winship/Breece Comm.
38 (1) 33 Names on Record Book of Foreign Volunteers
39 (2) 34 (Cont.)
40 (3) 35 (Cont.)
42 (4) 37 Capt. Thos. H. Breece Roll
43 (2) Capt. Thos. Lewellyn Roll
44 Certification of Capt. Lewellyn Roll
46 (5) 1 List of men who fell in the Alamo
47 (6) 2 (Cont.)
48 (7) 3 (Cont.)
49 (8) 4 Lt. George C. Kimbell Roll
50 (9) 5 Capt. W.A. Wadsworth Roll
51 (10) 6 (Cont.)
52 (11) 7 Capt. U.J. Bullock Roll and verso attachment
53 (12) 8 (Cont.)
54 (13) 9 Capt. James C. Winn Roll
55 (14) 10 (Winn Cont.)/Capt. Isaac Ticknor Roll
56 (15) 11 (Ticknor Cont.)/Capt. Ira Westover Roll
57 (16) 12 (Westover Cont.)
58 (17) 13 Capt. Amon B. King Roll
59 (18) 14 Capt. B.H. Duval Roll
60 (19) 15 Capt. P.S. Wyatt Roll
61 (20) 16 Capt. David N. Burk Roll and verso attachment
62 (21) 17 Capt. Saml. O. Pettus Roll and verso attachment
63 (22,23) 18 Capt. Jack Shackleford Roll
64 (24) 19 Capt. A.C. Horton Roll and verso attachment
65 (25) 20 Col. Fannin Field and Staff / B.F. Hill Cert.
66 (26) 21 Note attached, re Perry Davis/Wyatt Comm.
22 Note attached, re Micajah Autry/Travis Comm.
(28) 23 Note attached, re Lewis Duel/Travis Comm.
26 1/4 Note re Capt. John M. Bradley's Roll
[separate sheet with book]