Robert Wooster

ARMSTRONG, JAMES (ca. 1811–1879). James Armstrong, politician, was born in Kentucky about 1811. He came to Texas shortly before the Texas Revolution and joined Capt. James Chessher's company of Jasper Volunteers on March 3, 1836. He was discharged on July 26 of that year. Armstrong was elected to represent Jasper County at the Fourth Congress of the Republic of Texas in 1839–40. He subsequently was district attorney for Jasper in 1840–41 and served as president of the board of land commissioners of Jasper County before moving to Beaumont. Jefferson County voters elected him to serve in the House during the Ninth Congress (1844–45) and in the Convention of 1845. After annexation he was elected to the House of the Second Legislature from Jefferson County. Armstrong moved in 1848 to Williamson County, where he became an attorney and a rancher. He subsequently returned to public life and served in the Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Texas legislatures as the senator from his home district, which included Williamson County. By 1860 he owned three slaves and had a total estate of some $6,000. He had at least five children. He returned to Beaumont about 1868. He served as a member of the Constitutional Convention of 1868–69, where he was one of the leaders of the conservative faction, and represented the First District, including much of Southeast Texas, in the Thirteenth Legislature. Armstrong was listed as an attorney in the census of 1870, when his estate was valued at $13,000. He was a Mason. He died of pneumonia on December 21, 1879.

Texas House of Representatives, Biographical Directory of the Texan Conventions and Congresses, 1832–1845 (Austin: Book Exchange, 1941). W. T. Block, A History of Jefferson County, Texas, from Wilderness to Reconstruction (M.A. thesis, Lamar University, 1974; Nederland, Texas: Nederland Publishing, 1976). Galveston Daily News, December 23, 1879. Members of the Texas Legislature, 1846–1962 (Austin, 1962).

Image Use Disclaimer

All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.

For more information go to:

If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.


The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Handbook of Texas Online, Robert Wooster, "ARMSTRONG, JAMES," accessed August 19, 2019,

Uploaded on June 9, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

Get this week's most popular Handbook of Texas articles delivered straight to your inbox