Transcriptions of Historical Documents - This is by no means ALL of them; just some that contain historical facts regarding relationships and interesting history.
REPUBLIC of TEXAS Pension Claim - "Exhibit "A"
The State of Texas
County of Hays
Before me, the undersigned authority - this day ______ and personally appeared Michael Sessum, whom I do hereby certify, is to me personally well known and who, being by me duly sworn, deposes and states upon oath that he is a resident citizen of the County of Hays in the State of Texas. That he about sixty-three (63) years of age, that he was born in the State of Tennessee in the month of March AD 1812. That he immigrated to the State of Texas in the year AD 1822 and that he has resided in said State of Texas for the period of about fifty-three (53) years, to wit: from the said year AD 1822 to the present time.
That in the war which separated Texas from Mexico AD 1836, he served as a spy under command of Capt. Thomas McGehee in the Service of the Republic of Texas; and as an interpreter of the Spanish language between the Texans and Mexicans, and as an interpreter of the indian language between the indians and whites, and that while he was not an enlisted man in the military sense of the term, yet, he served as a volunteer spy and interpreter under command of the military officers of the Republic of Texas throughout the said War of AD 1836.
That pending the movements resulting in the Battle of San Jacinto he be sworn by verbal orders in person to him from Gen Edward Burleson in person, absent from the main body of the army on special and detached service as such spy, and as such interpreter.
That he felt bound to obey the orders of Gen Burleson thus given and did so and that his obedience to the orders aforesaid, and that alone, defamed him of the privelege of participating in the enforcement on the San Jacinto.
He further states that after the establishment of the independence of the Republic of Texas, he joined himself to the party which went to the relief of Captain Dawson's Company massacred near San Antonio in the year of 1842. That he reached the scene of said massacre on the night thereafter following. That he was thus immediately attached to and (? encumbered to?) the Service of said company, and that from thence forward, he served under command of the officers employed in that expedition against the enemies of the Republic of Texas, and as such participated in the engagement which therein occurred on the banks of the Rio Hondo.
He states further more that he has never received , and that he has never applied for any manner of pension under the laws of Texas, and that h has never applied for and never received any bounty warrants for land under the laws of Texas. He further states that his personal property is of not more than $400.00 worth. That he has no homestead, nor other _______, neither land certificates. That he has a wife and children dependent upon for support. That his wife is of advanced years, and that she has no separate estate. That he is of feeble health and strength and in danger of coming to pass, and that this affadavit is made for the purpose of bringing his case as an applicant for pension and bounty land home before the attention of the Adjutant of Texas.
This 23rd day of Feb'y AD 1875
Michael Sessum (his mark)
Sworn and subscribed to before me by Michael
Sessum on this the 23rd day of February AD 1875. To which I certify
under my hand and offical seal this day and date above written.
Ed J.L. Green, Clerk, District Court, Hays Co., Texas.
Llano County, TX Deed Book P, pp. 334-335
State of Texas
County of Llano
Know all men by these presents that we Elizabeth Sessom, J.N. Sessom, James E. Sessom, Mary E. Jennings, Alexander Jennings, Walter McCall and Amanda McCall, all of Llano County and B.O. Sessom and Henry Smith and Julia A. Smith of Mason Co., Texas and Michael V. Sesssom and Gracy B. Wood and John Wood of Maverick County Texas and David C. Sessom heirs named as follows Sedone M. Kirkland and ________ (no name entered), her husband, Lucy Ann Sessom and 16 years on 14 May 1882 and Robert Sessom aged 14 years on 19 March 1882 of Kimble County, Texas, for and in consideration of the Sum of four hundred and fifty dollars to us paid by L.S. Jennings of Hays County Texas have bargained sold and conveyed and by these presents do bargain sell convey and deliver all that tract or parcel of land lying and situated in Hays County on the waters of Onion Creek, about 22 miles N 45 West from the town of San Marcos known as survey No. 531 ........ given under our hands the 1st day of February AD 1882.
Jose Wadsworth as to
Elizabeth Sessom (her mark)
John N. Sessom (his mark)
James E. Sessom
Julia A. Smith
Michael V. Sessom (his mark)
John Wood (his mark)
Sedone M. Kirkland (her mark)
Probate Records, Hays County, Texas
PROBATE Book "A" 1848-1859, p. 1
Estate of: Ellis Sessom
Michael Sessom apointed guardian of estate and person of minor, John Green Sessom. Sureties: W.E. Owen and H.L. Harvey Recorded 22 November 1848
Was initially appointed guardian 29 November 1845, Milam County, Republic of Texas. Sureties: John Berry and Jackson Berry.
Early Pioneer San Marcos Merchant Follows Code of the Old West
Editor's Note: Since this family was one of the first to settle in San Marcos, and Mike Sessom was one of the first merchants here, we chose this story for your enjoyment in the Golden Corner this week. The original story was compiled by a descendent some years back after much painstaking research and many interviews. This story, we thought, pictured a little more clearly the sense of values and hardships of our pioneer forebears.
Mike Sessom migrated from Tennessee to Texas sometime between 1832-1836. He built the second house in San Marcos in 1846 and owned and operated the only store in town where the J.C. Penney store is now located. He owned much land in the outskirts and was a rancher also.
Sessom was a member of Jack Hay's Texas Rangers and was stationed in San Marcos where the Federal Fish Hatchery now stands. He was in Capt. Henry McCullouch's command. He was also a member of the first church founded in San Marcos, the First Methodist.
He had four children enrolled in the third session of school in San Marcos. This school was taught by Mrs. D.S. Morris from January to July of 1849. These children were David, Ed, John and Julia Ann Sessoms.
In Feb. 1851, Mike Sessoms bought town lot No. 8, block 6, and in March 1851 he bought land on Purgatory Creek. He bought other acreage about the town in 1853-54-55. In 1857, he bought land in Sink Valley with a promise to pay $1,600 in six years. Six years later he sold this land for $3,000 - a good price in those days. In 1875, he bought land on Onion Creek near Driftwood.
Mike Sessom died in 1877, and his last property was sold by his widow, Elizabeth, in 1882. By this time, all the Sessoms had moved to Llano County, where some still reside.
When Mike Sessom operated his store, he treated all his customers equally. He was fair with the Indians who came in to buy supplies, and one Indian in particular became fond of Mike. This Indian always paid in gold and was a regular customer for some ten years. One day he informed Mike that he was growing old and would take him to the cache in order for someone to have knowledge of its whereabouts.
Mike was reluctant to accompany the old Indian, for he had learned of their wiles in his younger days. However, one morning he packed his mules and started toward Onion Creek with the Indian. They traveled three or four days and the Indian said they were drawing near. However, several more days passed by, and Mike concluded that the old Indian had forgotten, although he was on horseback and the Indian was walking making travel slow.
One morning they encountered a small band of Comanches who proceeded to take the life of the Indian and steal the pack mules. Because Mike was on horseback, he outran the Comanches and escaped with his life. He was lost and without food, but managed to live from berries, birds and pecans. When he arrived home, he decided not to discuss the locality of the hidden gold or of his escapade. He did not tell of it until years later, and then he would not tell where they had traveled.
Mike's son, David, was a news dispatcher with the Confederate Army and was accused of giving information to the enemy. He knew he could never be proven innocent of the crime until he found the man who issued the complaint against him. Therefore, he deserted and hid in the home of a widow in the outskirts of San Marcos.
David hid during the day and sought information of his accuser at night. He was safe for almost two months when he was betrayed by a man named Mayes, a cedar chopper in the hills. After dawn one morning, seven Confederate soldiers arrested him and about 500 yards from the house, in a small ravine, several shots were fired. Dave Sessom was killed without warning. He was unarmed and killed in cold blood; whether he was trying to escape was never known.
His son's death almost killed Mike Sesssom, and he swore that he would even the score with Mayes. Some time later, he told his wife that he was going hunting, packed his saddle bags and borrowed a finger stall from her. He searched for Mayes some three of four days and finally found him in the Wimberley hills. It was very cold and Mike hid himself until daybreak some 500 yards of the camp, took the finger stall off and placed it in the fork of a tree and drew aim.
Mike knew he had to make one shot do the job, for if he missed, Mayes could get away before he could reload and get to his horse. Mayes came out to build a fire, Mike pulled the trigger, and Mayes fell - fatally wounded.
Mayes was found later and it was considered that he had been killed by Indians.
Mike confessed to the murder 20 minutes before his death to four men from San Marcos. He told them where it had occurred and about the finger stall. The men found the remains of the finger stall, but Mike had already been laid to rest.
The crime was never mentioned, except by Mike's sons, who told their children and grandchildren and so the story comes to us. In the code of the old west "An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth."
From "Recollections of Early Texas" by John Holmes Jenkins III
In one of their raids they stole some horses belonging to a small company of Delaware Indians, who were encamped on Cedar Creek. These Delawares were friendly and honorable. They frequently camped in the settlements, hunting and trading with the whites. They even fought in the Texas Army against Mexico.
Early on the morning after the theft of the horses of their chief, "Captain Bob," and two others of their tribe started with Mike Sessom, a white man, in pursuit of the thieves. The trail was a plain one, as they had made the theft immediatley after a heavy rain. The thieves, seven or eight Caddoes, were overtaken at Onion Creek, which was very high. Having already swum the horses across, the thieves were making a raft to cross their bows, arrows, guns, and blankets. Upon seeing Captain Bob's small force, they plunged into the creek, leaving everything behind them. One of them got tangled in a vine on the opposite bank, and Sessom raised his gun to fire at him, but Captain Bob, who was more versed in such matters, stopped him, saying that he thought it possible to get the stolen horses by milder measures, whereas one shot would cause them to run. He then called to them and told them they had stolen indian horses and must bring them back. Seeing he was a red man they paused and listened to him. He bade them come over, bring the horses, and get their weapons and blankets which they had left. He assured them that in doing so they would not be hurt.
They finally consented and brought over all the stolen horses except one, which they declared was no indian horse, for they knew they took him "right at the white man's door." They would not be persuaded to restore this one. Taking a careful survey of Captain Bob's party, they looked uon Mr. Sessom with undisguised mistrust and suspicion and said. "That is a white man." The chief assured them that he was a half-breed Delaware who lived with them, and since Sessom was dressed like the Delawares, they finally accepted him as an Indian, though they never forgot to be on the alert. They finally crossed over all their luggage and then formed a circle and passed the pipe of peace around. While the smoke curled gracefully above their heads a small band of whites rode in sight. Instantly they sprang into the creek and made their escape, taking the "white man's horse" with them."