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 »


Robert Bruce Blake

NORRIS, SAMUEL (1783–?). Samuel Norris, son of Edmund and Sarah (Rogers) Norris, was born in St. Mary's County, Maryland, in 1783. His parents moved to Natchez, Mississippi, in 1802 and in 1803 to the Rancho Naconichi near Attoyac Bayou in what is now Nacogdoches County, Texas. The family remained there until 1813, when they were driven into Louisiana by Joaquín de Arredondo. In 1820 Norris returned to Nacogdoches and in the fall of 1825 was elected alcalde. The election was contested by his opponent, Chichester Chaplin, son-in-law of Martin Parmer.qqv Chaplin, supported by Parmer, seized the alcalde's office, but the political chief in Bexar ruled that Norris was the legally elected alcalde. Norris finally got possession of his office, but his lack of training and education made him unpopular, especially with the Anglo-American squatters. In what is known as the Fredonian Rebellion that group, headed by Parmer, took possession of Nacogdoches, arrested Norris and the clerk of the ayuntamiento, organized a court martial, tried them, and removed Norris from office, declaring him "forever incapable of holding any office of trust, honor, or profit in the said district." Norris was temporarily restored to office, but the political chief recognized the impropriety of keeping him there by force and soon replaced him. Norris moved to Louisiana, where he spent the remainder of his life.

Eugene C. Barker, ed., The Austin Papers (3 vols., Washington: GPO, 1924–28). Bexar Archives, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin. Robert Bruce Blake Research Collection, Steen Library, Stephen F. Austin State University; Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin; Texas State Archives, Austin; Houston Public Library, Houston. Nacogdoches Archives, Steen Library, Stephen F. Austin State University; Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin; Texas State Archives, Austin.

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, Robert Bruce Blake, "NORRIS, SAMUEL," accessed May 24, 2020, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fno08.

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...