While our physical offices are closed until further notice in accordance with Austin's COVID-19 "stay home-work safe" order, the Handbook of Texas will remain available at no-cost for you, your fellow history enthusiasts, and all Texas students currently mandated to study from home. If you have the capacity to help us maintain our online Texas history resources during these uncertain times, please consider making a 100% tax-deductible contribution today. Thank you for your support of TSHA and Texas history. Donate Today »


JONES, HENRY (1789–1861). Henry Jones, early Texas official and one of Stephen F. Austin's Old Three Hundred colonists, was born in Richmond, Virginia, on March 15, 1789. In 1817 he and his brother John went by flatboat to New Orleans and up the Mississippi River to the mouth of the White River, where they joined Martin Varner for hunting and trapping in the Missouri Territory. Sometime before 1820 Jones began operating a ferry across the Red River just above the mouth of Little Pine Creek and gave his name to the settlement of Jonesborough. In January 1821 he married Nancy Styles, either on the Red River or in Missouri; they became the parents of twelve children, the first of whom was born in Texas in 1822. In April 1824 Jones voted in an election in the Austin colony and on July 8, 1824, received title to a sitio in what is now Fort Bend County. The census of 1826 listed him as a stock raiser with a wife, two infant sons, and one servant. In 1830 the Jones home, eight miles below the site of present Richmond, served as a voting place. Attorney William B. Travis, riding between San Felipe and Brazoria as part of his practice, frequently stopped at the Jones plantation. In the spring of 1836 Jones was detailed to guard the fleeing families on the Runaway Scrape. He fell ill, however, and had to be taken by wagon from his plantation before the arrival of the Mexican army. Mexican troops camped at his river landing, from which they tried to capture the steamboat Yellow Stone with lassos. In 1837 Jones served on the Fort Bend County grand jury. The next year he was the administrator of his brother John's estate. In 1860 the Jones property was valued at $200,000. Jones died on June 8, 1861.

Andrew Jackson Sowell, History of Fort Bend County (Houston: Coyle, 1904; rpt, Richmond, Texas: Fort Bend County Historical Museum, 1974). William Barret Travis, Diary, ed. Robert E. Davis (Waco: Texian Press, 1966). Clarence Wharton, Wharton's History of Fort Bend County (San Antonio: Naylor, 1939).

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: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml

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, "JONES, HENRY," accessed May 31, 2020, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fjo50.

Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
visit the mytsha forums to participate

View these posts and more when you register your free MyTSHA account.

Call for Papers: Texas Center for Working-Class Studies Events, Symposia, and Workshops
Hi all! You may be interested in this call for papers I received from the Texas Center for Working-Class Studies at Collin College...

Katy Jennings' Ride Scholarly Research Request
I'm doing research on Catherine Jennings Lockwood, specifically the incident known as "Katy Jennings' Ride." Her father was Gordon C. Jennings, the oldest man to die at the Alamo...

Texas Constitution of 1836 Co-Author- Elisha Pease? Ask a Historian
The TSHA profile of Elisha Marshall Pease states that he wrote part of the Texas Constitution although he was only a 24 year-old assistant secretary (not elected). I cannot find any other mention of this authorship work by Pease in other credible research about the credited Constution authors...