- Get Involved
SWEARINGEN, RICHARD JOHNSON
SWEARINGEN, RICHARD JOHNSON (1808–1861). Richard Johnson Swearingen, physician, farmer, and state legislator, was born in Edgefield County, South Carolina, in 1808, according to his headstone. (Many genealogy sources give the birthdate as June 5.) He was the son of Frederick Swearingen and Sarah (Bettis) Swearingen. Swearingen was raised in the South and studied medicine as a young man. On November 2, 1830, he married Margaret M. Connor in Greene County, Alabama. They had up to seven children. The family lived in Mississippi before coming to Texas; several children were born in Noxubie County, Mississippi. In 1848 Swearingen moved with his family to Texas and settled near Chappell Hill in Washington County, where he established himself as a doctor and farmer. He became one of the leading members of the community and was a large landowner, an active Baptist, and owned thirty slaves by 1850. The 1850 census listed Swearingen’s worth at $12,000. He represented Washington County in the House of the Fifth Texas Legislature from November 7, 1853, to November 5, 1855, and was on the Education, Internal Improvement, Penitentiary, and State Affairs committees. In the mid-1850s Swearingen played a key role in founding Soule University, a Methodist institution in Chappell Hill, and donated ten acres of land for use in its construction. After the death of his first wife, he married Amanda M. Walker on June 12, 1859. Swearingen died on January 20, 1861, and was buried at the Masonic Cemetery in Chappell Hill, Washington County, Texas.
“Dr Richard Johnson Swearingen,” Find A Grave Memorial (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=93206246), accessed October 1, 2014. Frank W. Johnson, A History of Texas and Texans (5 vols., ed. E. C. Barker and E. W. Winkler [Chicago and New York: American Historical Society, 1914; rpt. 1916]). Legislative Reference Library of Texas: Dr. R. J. Swearingen (http://www.lrl.state.tx.us/legeLeaders/members/memberDisplay.cfm?memberID=5273&searchparams=chamber=~city=~countyID=0~RcountyID=~district=~first=~gender=~last=swearingen~leaderNote=~leg=~party=~roleDesc=~Committee=), accessed October 1, 2014. Worth Stickley Ray, Austin Colony Pioneers (Austin: Jenkins, 1949; 2d ed., Austin: Pemberton, 1970).
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, Aragorn Storm Miller and Laurie E. Jasinski, "SWEARINGEN, RICHARD JOHNSON," accessed May 26, 2019, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fsw33.
Uploaded on October 3, 2014. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.