Robert Lee Williamson
Grave of Alfred Benjamin Fontaine Kerr
Grave of Alfred Benjamin Fontaine Kerr. Courtesy of Jim and Cheryl Schouten Photography. Image available on the Internet and included in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107.

KERR, ALFRED BENJAMIN FONTAINE (1823–1881). Alfred Benjamin Fontaine Kerr, Methodist minister, the son of Hugh and Lucy (Thomson) Kerr, was born in Giles County, Tennessee, on January 1, 1823. In company with forty other families, the Kerr family arrived at Harrisburg, Texas, on April 21, 1831, and proceeded to the area of present western Washington County to take up land. On March 10, 1847, at the seventh session of the Texas Conference of the Methodist Church, Kerr was admitted on trial. He later became a prominent minister in this conference. In August 1847 he helped organize a church at the site of present San Marcos. He was appointed agent for Rutersville College on December 12, 1849, and served in that capacity until 1852. While covering his circuit on horseback he sought donations and subscriptions for the college. In 1853 he was transferred to another circuit and became pastor at Goliad, where he assumed the duties of agent for Payne Female Institute. Ill health because of exposure caused Kerr's retirement from the ministry. In 1876 he moved with his family to San Marcos.  Kerr died on November 21, 1881, and is buried in San Marcos Cemetery in San Marcos, Texas.


Macum Phelan, History of Early Methodism in Texas, 1817–1866 (Nashville: Cokesbury, 1924); A History of the Expansion of Methodism in Texas, 1867–1902 (Dallas: Mathis, Van Nort, 1937).

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

Handbook of Texas Online, Robert Lee Williamson, "KERR, ALFRED BENJAMIN FONTAINE," accessed February 25, 2020,

Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Modified on April 13, 2016. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
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