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 »


Edith Harriette Long

TOM, WILLIAM (1792–1871). William Tom, early settler, Texas Revolutionary soldier, and Texas Ranger, son of William and Nancy (Brown) Tom, was born in Southwest Territory on January 1, 1792. He participated in the battles of Horseshoe Bend and New Orleans in the War of 1812. In 1817 he married Mary Files, and they had five children. After his first wife's death, Tom married Kessiah Hines, and they had six children. He moved his family to Stephen F. Austin's colony in Texas in February 1835 and homesteaded at Washington-on-the-Brazos. In June and July 1835 Tom organized his neighbors for campaigns against the Comanche and Tawakoni Indians. He joined the Volunteer Army of Texas at Gonzales on October 10, 1835, and marched with it to San Antonio, where he participated in the battle of Concepción and the Grass Fight.qqv He was with Ben Milam in the siege of Bexar and remained in San Antonio under the command of James C. Neill until February 11, 1836, when he returned to Washington-on-the-Brazos in time to assist in the evacuation during the Runaway Scrape. Tom commanded a ranger company on the Sabinal River during the period of the Republic of Texas. In 1846 he moved to Seguin and was elected sheriff of Guadalupe County. Mrs. Tom died in 1870, and Tom died in 1871. They were buried in the family cemetery near Seguin, but on July 18, 1937, their bodies were reinterred in the State Cemetery.

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, Edith Harriette Long, "TOM, WILLIAM," accessed May 29, 2020, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fto14.

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...