“Bond reflected that good Americans were fine people and that most of them seemed to come from Texas.”–Ian Fleming, Casino Royale
The third largest state in the membership rolls of the Germanna Foundation is the Lone Star State of Texas.
We are proud of our Lone Star members, whose ancestors brought their heritage of liberty from Fort Germanna to Texas and were prominent in its struggle for independence from Mexico.
Germanna families have been building a strong culture of Texan self-reliance under the flags of Mexico, the Republic of Texas, the Confederacy, and the United States, and include descendants of the Germanna Broyles, Fishback, Fleischman, Haeger, Hitt, Kemper, Otterbach, Rector, and Wilhoit families.
More await to be discovered by our volunteers!
KEMPER, John Frederick (1802-1844)
John F. Kemper, founder of Kemper’s Bluff (later Kemper City) in Victoria County, married the Millers’ daughter Eliza in Tennessee and came to Texas with Miller’s Nashville Battalion as second in command. At Kemper’s Bluff in 1845 Kemper apparently became the last white man killed by Karankawas before settlers drove the Indians out of South Texas. Elizabeth Grace Miller, who was visiting her daughter at the time, fought off the attackers until nightfall, when she escaped with her daughter and two grandchildren to nearby settlements. Angry settlers subsequently hunted down and killed the Indians.
Craig H. Roell
O. W. Nolen, Fowlerton, Texas, “Exodus Of the Carancawas.” Frontier Times Magazine, (Vol 5 No. 12 – September, 1928), http://www.frontiertimesmagazine.com/0928.html
The Caranacwa Indian tribe, made their final exodus out of the state of Texas November, 1844. But the departure of this tribe did not commence until a brutal raid was committed.
Kemper’s Bluff [now Kemper City] at the right bank of the Guadalupe twenty-two miles below Victoria, was named after John F. Kemper, who was the first settler at that place, where he built a cabin in the fall of 1844.
Late in the month of November of that year his mother-in-law, Mrs. Elizabeth Miller, accompanied by her son, Joseph Miller, went down from Victoria to visit her daughter. As it was early in the evening when they arrived at the bluff, young Miller and a man who lived with Mr. Kemper went to the bottom to shoot ducks.
In the meantime, near sun-set, about thirty Carancawa Indians, men, women and children, appeared in the rear of Mr. Kemper’s cow-pen and shot one of his cows with an arrow. Whereupon, Mr. Kemper walked towards them with his rifle and bade them, by signs, to depart, but as he turned to walk back to the cabin an arrow struck him in the shoulder.
Mrs. Miller met him at the door and pulled out the arrow. He stepped away for a moment, ‘and returning, fainted and fell in the door and soon expired. It was now dark and the Indians retired to an old shanty in the rear of the house, and collecting a quanity of dry moss pushed it under the house and set it on fire. The blaze rose for a few moments nearly to the roof, but the cabin logs being new and unseasoned, did not ignite. Besides, Mrs. Miller threw a bucket of water on the flames.
The doors had no shutters and the Indians were wary of exposing themselves in front of them, but ventured to throw a fire-brand on Kemper’s body, probably to test whether there was life in it. Mrs. Kemper fired the rifle once at the Indians, but could not tell whether the shot took effect. As there were no more bullets for the rifle Mrs. Kemper made some slugs by hammering a piece of lead.
Finally, these heroic women resolved to make an effort to escape with the children Mrs. Miller took the three-year-old girl, Amanda, in her arms and Mrs. Kemper her five-months-old infant, and both simultaneously dashed out of the front door, passing near a fire that was blazing in the yard, the light from which exposed them for a moment to the view of the Indians, who shot several arrows at them …
Mentions: J. H. Kuykendall, soldier, scholar and historian. His father, Capt. Abner Kuykendall, was a member of Austin’s’ Colony and settled on the Colorado river January 1, 1822 * Mr. Bass on the Coleto * Mrs. Miller *
Germanna Family Tree: http://trees.ancestry.com/tree/8670462/family?fpid=-557734405
KEMPER, SAMUEL (d. 1814)
Samuel Kemper, filibuster, was born in Fauquier County, Virginia, and moved with his father to Ohio in 1800. The next year Samuel, Reuben, and Nathan Kemper took up their residence in southwestern Mississippi and West Florida. Frequently in trouble with Spanish authorities, the Kemper brothers led an abortive rebellion in West Florida in 1804.
Kemper operated a tavern at Pinckneyville until he became a major in the Gutiérrez-Magee expedition. He led the advance guard, which forced Royalist defenders of Nacogdoches to retreat and paved the way for the village’s occupation on August 12, 1812. When Augustus W. Magee died at La Bahía on February 6, 1813, Kemper became commander of the American contingent.
At that time Simón de Herrera and Manuel María de Salcedoqqv were besieging La Bahía; but under Kemper’s leadership the filibusters defeated the Royalists and forced them to retreat to San Antonio. On March 19, 1813, Kemper and Gutiérrez marched toward the capital of Texas, San Antonio, with an army of 800 men.
Ten days later they defeated the Royalists in the battle of Rosillo, an engagement that turned into a rout when Kemper and Reuben Ross led a furious charge against the Spanish forces. Salcedo attempted to parley for the capitulation of San Antonio, but Kemper demanded and received an unconditional surrender.
Accompanied by several officers, he dined with Salcedo and Herrera on April 1, and on the next day Salcedo disarmed his men. The murder of Salcedo, Herrera, and other officers on April 3 disgusted Kemper, and he decided to withdraw from the expedition.
He accepted a furlough from Gutiérrez, arrived at Natchitoches, Louisiana, on May 7, 1813, and reached St. Francisville, Louisiana, on May 26. Other filibuster leaders attempted to interest Kemper in efforts to renew the fight; but, seriously ill, he refused their invitations and died at St. Francisville in 1814.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: Isaac Joslin Cox, The West Florida Controversy, 1798–1813: A Study in American Diplomacy (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, 1918). Julia Kathryn Garrett, Green Flag Over Texas: A Story of the Last Years of Spain in Texas (Austin: Pemberton Press, 1939). Harris Gaylord Warren, The Sword Was Their Passport: A History of American Filibustering in the Mexican Revolution (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1943).
Harris Gaylord Warren
Germanna Family Tree of father, Rev. Peter Kemper
RECTOR, ARTHUR EVERETT (1855–1955)
Arthur Everett Rector, Methodist circuit rider, son of Nelson Simpkins and Harriet Caroline (Kirk) Rector, was born at Kendalia, Texas, on April 25, 1855. When he was a young child his family moved to a farm near the site of present-day Manor to escape the danger of Indian attacks, and in 1866 they moved to Austin. In 1875–76 Rector attended Texas Military Institute, Austin, where he finished first in his class.
After graduating he taught at Belton Collegiate Institute and soon was elevated to principal. In 1877 he spent a year studying at the University of Heidelberg, Germany. Rector had a religious conversion in 1871, during a large camp meeting just north of Austin. A breakdown in his health in 1877 left him an invalid for the next six years. During this illness he felt a call to the ministry. He entered the West Texas Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, as a minister in 1883.
His career included various duties and transfers to many different places. He was pastor of a congregation in Boerne and then of First Methodist Church, San Angelo, 1886–90; in San Antonio from 1890 to 1896 he worked toward establishing a church at the new West End addition. From 1896 to 1912 he served with the German Mission Conference, first in Houston and then as district superintendent at Fredericksburg.
From 1909 to 1912 he supervised the Methodist Immigrant Bureau in Galveston. In 1912 he returned to the West Texas Conference as Sunday school field secretary and then pastor at Pharr and Hallettsville. He was transferred to the Kerrville District and spent a year at Hyde Park Methodist Church, Austin, then two years at Harlandale in San Antonio.
A final year of teaching at Texas Wesleyan Institute brought his active ministry to a close in 1929. On his 100th birthday he received tributes from Judge M. A. Childers, president of the Judicial Council of the Methodist Church, from representatives of the Baptist Church, the Boy Scouts, Travis Park Church, and others. Rector married Emma Donaldson of Shavano (now Shavano Park), Texas, on November 14, 1888, in San Antonio. They had four children. Rector died on July 23, 1955, at his home in San Antonio and was buried in the Masonic Cemetery.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: Olin W. Nail, Southwest Texas Conference of the Methodist Church (Austin: Methodist Planning Committee, 1956). Macum Phelan, History of Early Methodism in Texas, 1817–1866 (Nashville: Cokesbury, 1924). Macum Phelan, A History of the Expansion of Methodism in Texas, 1867–1902 (Dallas: Mathis, Van Nort, 1937). Levi Brimner Salmans, History of the Descendants of John Jacob Rector (Guanajuato, Mexico, 1936; photostat, Texas State Library Genealogy Collection, Austin). San Antonio Express, April 25, 1955. Sunday San Antonio Express and San Antonio News, July 24, 1955. Yearbook and Minutes of the Southwest Texas Annual Conference, Methodist Church, 1956.
RECTOR, CLAIBORNE (1802–1873)
Claiborne Rector, early settler and soldier in the Texas Revolution, was born in Alabama on September 28, 1802. He moved to Texas in January 1830 and settled in the area of present Brazoria County. On March 1, 1836, he enlisted in David Murphree’s company, Second Regiment, of Sam Houston’s army; he participated in the battle of San Jacinto.
Rector served in Byrd Lockhart’s spy company in July 1836 and remained in the Texas army until September 1 of that year. He settled in what is now Wilson County by 1840 and received a 4,000-acre patent of land in December 1845. Rector represented Wilson County at the Secession Convention in 1861. He was captain of the Cibolo Guards Light Infantry in the Texas State Troops during the Civil War.
Rector married twice and had three children. He died on March 23, 1873, and was buried in the Concrete Cemetery, Guadalupe County, Texas.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: Sam Houston Dixon and Louis Wiltz Kemp, The Heroes of San Jacinto (Houston: Anson Jones, 1932). Deed L. Vest, A Century of Light: The History of Brahan Lodge No. 226, A.F. & A.M., La Vernia, Texas, 1858–1959 (Fort Worth: Masonic Home and School, 1959).
Louis W. Kemp
Born in Tennessee in 1805, a son of Rev. Morgan and Amelia Carter Rector. In Headright Certificate No. 21 issued to him for a league and labor of land by the Fort Bend County Board of Land Commissioners, February 6, 1838, it is stated that he came to Texas in January, 1830. He was a first cousin of Elbridge Gerry Rector, who also participated in the Battle of San Jacinto.
In Service Record No. 328, it is stated that Mr. Rector served in the army from March 1 to September 1, 1836. On September 2, 1847 he was issued Donation Certificate No. 87 for 640 acres of land for having participated in the Battle of San Jacinto. Claiborne and Pendleton Rector are shown on the muster roll of Captain Byrd Lockhart’s Company at muster in July 4, 1836.
Mr. Claiborne Rector was twice married. By the first marriage, three children were born, James Rector, Mrs. Emily Rector McClung and Mrs. Eveline Rector Tiner. His second wife was Mrs. Kirkman Milborn, and to this union no children were born. Mr. Rector died at Lavernia, Wilson County, Texas, March 23, 1873, and his wife died shortly afterwards. The two are buried in the Concrete Cemetery near Lavernia, but in Guadalupe County.
Germanna Family Tree: http://trees.ancestry.com/tree/10027640/family?fpid=-708744280.
Claiborne was the brother of Pendleton Rector.
Germanna Family Tree: http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=PED&db=ryalsl&id=I636&style=TEXT
RECTOR, ELBRIDGE GERRY (1816-1902)
Born in Sevier County, Tennessee February 19, 1816. In Headright Certificate No. 205 issued to him in 1838 for one-third of a league of land by the Board of Land Commissioners for Fort Bend County, it is stated that he came to Texas in December, 1835.
He was issued Bounty Certificate No. 253 for 640 acres of land April 16, 1847 for having served in the army from March 1 to September 1, 1836. He was a member of Captain William H. Patton’s Columbia Company and on February 17, 1840 was issued Donation Certificate No. 1022 for 640 acres of land for having participated in the Battle of San Jacinto.
On page 232 of the army rolls in the General Land Office, there is an affidavit signed June 21, 1856 by Colonel Jesse Benton, Jr. in which he stated that Mr. Rector was wounded in an arm in the battle.
Mr. Rector was married to Amanda M. McFarlane. Mr. Rector died October 19, 1902 while an honorary of the Texas Veterans Association. Mrs. Rector, born in Warren County, Tennessee in April 1831, died in December, 1927. Mr. and Mrs. Rector are buried in the Masonic Cemetery in Merced, California.
Children of Mr. and Mrs. Rector were William Fielding, Thomas Blackstone, Elbridge Nelson, Mary Elizabeth and Dollie Rector. Their grandchildren are William and Thomas Rector of Merced, California.
In a letter to Mr. J. B. Graves, Cameron, Texas, dated at Merced, California, January 2, 1902, Mr. Rector gave a brief sketch of his life:
“Your friendly letter came duly to hand about one month ago, please excuse me in not answering at once. I at that time was unwell is my excuse for not answering at its reception.”
“I was on the vessel that was wrecked at the mouth of the Brazos River, the precise date of which I can not remember, that was early in April 1835. I remember your mother’s family being on board the same vessel, and I shall never forget the terrible storm that we encountered on the Gulf of Mexico, between New Orleans and the mouth of the Brazos River, I presume that you have heard your mother relate. On board the same vessel was Mr. Nibling whom I remember well. What wonderful changes since that date I have passed through. I have passed through many scenes of pleasure and many hardships as well. I will give you short line of my wanderings. I was in Brazoria County at the breaking out of the war with Mexico. On the reception of the news that Santa Ana had entered San Antonio, I with others started in that direction. This news we received through the Travis letter, who was at the Alamo. I was on the Guadalupe River at Gonzales when General Sam Houston arrived; He the same day sent out a small squad of men to learn the fate of the Alamo. In a short time they returned bringing the sad news of the fall of the place. There were forty-two women at Gonzales waiting to hear the news who had husbands in the Alamo. Language can not describe the heart rending scene which still lives vividly in my brain. I was in the battle of San Jacinto and was wounded in the arm and side, the wound in the side is hurting me at this writing.
“I joined Capt. Ben McColloch’s company of scouts in the war between the United States and Mexico; was out only three months. On the second of May I left Texas for California by the Southern route. After some hardships landed in Mariposa County then in all its mining glory. I did not succeed as did many in mining, so I left the mines in 1853, and tried my hand at farming on a small scale. In 1855 Merced County was formed. I was then elected County Clerk, holding that position seven years. I was then elected Sheriff of the county. After this I farmed a short time, then tried raising Angora goats until 1877 when I sold out and returned to Texas settling in San Saba County. After five years in Texas we returned to Merced County where we still reside. I was elected after my return County Treasurer, which office I held for three years. I was married in 1880. We have five children, three boys and two girls. One son is a journalist, the other a farmer and the third is the Superior Judge of this county. My daughters are both teaching school. On the 19th of next February, I will to 86 years of age. I may never see Texas again, but I am interested in everything that affects the welfare of the people of that grand state. I thank you for your kind wishes and the clippings sent me. I sincerely trust and pray that your years may be lengthened into old age, and that health and prosperity may be your reward.”
Written by Louis W. Kemp, between 1930 and 1952. Please note that typographical and factual errors have not been corrected from the original sketches. The biographies have been scanned from the original typescripts, a process that sometimes allows for mistakes in the new text. Researchers should verify the accuracy of the texts’ contents through other sources before quoting in publications. Additional information on the veteran may be available in the Herzstein Library. http://www.sanjacinto-museum.org/Herzstein_Library/Veteran_Biographies/San_Jacinto_Bios/biographies/default.asp?action=bio&id=3512
RECTOR, JOHN B. (1837–1898)
John B. Rector, lawyer and judge, was born on November 24, 1837, in Jackson County, Alabama, the son of L. L. and Agnes (Black) Rector. In 1847 he moved with his family to Bastrop County, Texas, where his father established a plantation. Rector attended Yale College. He graduated in 1859, read law with Royal T. Wheeler, and was admitted to the Texas bar in 1860. He began the practice of law in Austin.
Shortly after the outbreak of the Civil War he joined the Eighth Texas Cavalry, Terry’s Texas Rangers. He served throughout the conflict and surrendered with Gen. Joseph E. Johnston’s army in May 1865. After resuming the practice of law in Bastrop, Rector was elected district attorney for the Second Judicial District on June 25, 1866. He held that position until Gen. Joseph J. Reynolds ordered his removal in November 1867.
Rector married Ludie W. Barton, a native of Mississippi, on December 25, 1866. They had no children.
By early 1871, although he had served in the Confederate Army and been removed from office by the military in 1867, Rector had become a Republican. Governor Edmund J. Davis appointed him judge of the Thirty-first Judicial District in February 1871, and he served on the bench until adoption of the Constitution of 1876. He then returned to the practice of law in Austin.
He also became very active in Republican party politics, serving on the state platform committee in 1884, as chairman of the state executive committee in 1886–88, and as a delegate to the national convention in 1888 and 1892. In 1884 he ran unsuccessfully as the Republican candidate for the Tenth District seat in the United States House of Representatives. Rector retired from his law practice in July 1888, but in March 1892 President Benjamin Harrison appointed him judge of the Northern Judicial District of Texas. He held that position until his death in Austin on April 9, 1898. After Episcopal rites, he was buried in Oakwood Cemetery.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: Austin Statesman, March 10, 1898. History of Texas, Together with a Biographical History of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson Counties (Chicago: Lewis, 1893). Memorial and Biographical History of Dallas County (Chicago: Lewis, 1892; rpt., Dallas: Walsworth, 1976).
Randolph B. Campbell
RECTOR, PENDLETON (1807-1888)
Born in Tennessee, November 8, 1807, son of Rev. Morgan and Amelia (Carter) Rector, who came to Texas in 1830. In Headright Certificate No. 146 for one-third of a league of land issued to Pendleton Rector in 1838 by the Board of Land Commissioners of Brazoria County it is merely stated that he arrived in Texas before May 2, 1835, but in the Certificate issued to his brother, Claiborne Rector, it is stated that he came to Texas in January, 1830. On page 104, vol. 1, Papers of Mirabeau Buonaparte Lamar it is shown that he participated in the Battle of Velasco in June, 1832.
In the 1874 Year Book of the Texas Veterans Association, of which he was a member, it is stated that he participated in the campaign of 1835. In the Comptroller’s Military Service Record No. 172 it is stated that he enlisted in the army March 1 and served until September 1, 1836, when he was discharged at Velasco. On October 26, 1848 he was issued Bounty Certificate No. 675 for 640 acres of land for his services from March 1 to May 29, 1836.
He was a member of Captain William H. Patton’s Columbia Company at San Jacinto and on October 26, 1838 he received Donation certificate No. 129 for 640 acres of land for having participated in the battle. On page 51 of the army rolls in the General Land Office, he is shown as a member of Captain Byrd Lockhart’s Company on July 5, 1836. On page 232 it is stated that Colonel Jesse Benton, Jr. succeeded in command of Captain Patton’s Company July 23, 1836 and that on a roll of the company prepared by Colonel Benton, Mr. Rector is listed as Second Lieutenant. Peter Harper left the army April 27th and Mr. Rector succeeded him as Second Lieutenant.
During the War between the States, Mr. Rector was Captain of the Cibolo Guards, 30th Brigade, Confederate army, stationed at Lavernia, Wilson County, in 1861.
Mr. Rector made his home for many years at Brazoria. On April 20, 1848 at Seguin, he was married to Mary Jane Bridges and to them were born two children, Margaret and Stephen C. The family moved to Prairie Lea, Caldwell County, where Mrs. Rector, who was born in Illinois, March 26, 1832, died October 6, 1875 and. Mr. Rector died March 10, 1888, while a member of the Texas Veterans Association. Mr. and Mrs. Rector are buried in marked graves in the Happle cemetery in Guadalupe County, eighteen miles east of Seguin.
Margaret Rector, daughter of Pendleton Rector, was married to Oliver H. Gregg. Their children were Eleanor, who married Calvin S. Tuttle; Charlotte, who married Will R. Williams; and A. Pendleton Gregg.
Mr. Stephen C. Rector was married to Martha R. Smith.
Children of Mr. and Mrs. Stephen C. Rector are Miss Mae O. Rector; Emily, who married Harrison M. Daugherty; and Robert P. Rector, who married Millo Shanklin.
Brothers Claiborne and Pendleton Rector migrated to Texas in 1830 and settled in what is now Brazoria County. Pendleton served in Captain John Austin’s company in the Battle of Velasco in 1832 and participated in the siege of Bexar in 1835. Both Claiborne and Pendleton enlisted in Captain Patton’s company on March 1, 1836 and fought in the Battle of San Jacinto (Pendleton as 2nd Sarg.). They continued to serve until September 1, 1836 in Captain Byrd Lockhardt’s spy company.
Claiborne Rector married twice and had three children by his first wife. He died March 23, 1873, in Lavernia, Wilson County, Texas.
Pendleton Rector married Mary Jane Bridges in 1848, with whom he had two children. They lived in Prairie Lea, Caldwell County, Texas, where he died March 10, 1888.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: Dixon, Sam Houston and Louis Wiltz Kemp. The Heroes of San Jacinto. Houston: Anson Jones Press, 1932.
Germanna Family Tree: http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=PED&db=kgeveringham&id=I71029
RECTOR, RAY (1884–1933)
Ray Rector, photographer, son of Washington Swisher and Myra Melinda (Selvidge) Rector, was born at Indian Gap, Texas, on November 23, 1884. His father, a Tennessee Civil War veteran, moved to Texas in 1872 and settled in Johnson County. In 1886 the Rector family moved to Fisher County and began farming and raising dairy cattle. W. S. Rector was Fisher county clerk and district clerk from 1887 to 1892. Ray was one of twelve children. His formal schooling was meager, and as a youth he left home to work as a cowboy on the XIT Ranch in the Panhandle.
He took part in several cattle drives and adapted well to cowboy life. At the turn of the century he was lured farther west by “California fever” and worked in California for a brief period in the fruit industry. He contracted malaria, decided to return to the dry Texas climate, and in 1902 settled in Stamford. He and an older brother, Glenn, bought out a photographer named Higginbotham and, with his aid, taught themselves to make pictures and run a photographic studio. Glenn soon tired of the photography business and moved to California.
Ray continued the studio. In 1905, on his twenty-first birthday, he and Mamie Hunter of Seymour were married. Despite his commitments to a growing family of six children and his business and community affairs, Rector still found time to visit the neighboring ranches, where he had many friends among the cattlemen.
Always with his portable Kodak Autograph camera in hand, he relived his cowboy days by photographing everyday ranch-life scenes. Most of his photographs were made on the S. M. Swenson, Baldwin, Mayfield, Colbert, and Patterson ranches in the Stamford area. Rector called himself the “Cowboy Photographer” and used the title often in advertisements, newspapers, and magazines.
His idea for a cowboy reunion, to perpetuate the memory of the West and bring together old-time ranchers and cowhands for a few days of fellowship and reminiscence, resulted in the first Texas Cowboy Reunion, held in Stamford in 1930. The reunion continues to be celebrated each July and is one of the largest cowboy gatherings and amateur rodeos in the world. Rector was a Methodist and Rotarian. In 1931 he became the Texas grand master of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows.
He enlisted in the Texas National Guard in 1908 and attained the rank of captain. He was an organizer and leader of youth groups in the community, especially the Boy Scouts of America. He died at his home in Stamford in January 1933. In 1979 a collection of almost 1,000 photographic negatives and prints of his ranch-life scenes on the Texas plains was donated to the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center at the University of Texas at Austin by Rector’s youngest daughter, Margaret Rector.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: Margaret Rector, ed., Cowboy Life on the Texas Plains: The Photographs of Ray Rector (College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 1982).
Margaret Louise Rector (1920-2005)
Germanna Family Tree includes descent from the Germanna Rector, Fishback, Hitt, Otterbach, Broyles, Fleischman, and Wilhoit families: http://trees.ancestry.com/tree/2251022/family?fpid=-1300042776
RECTOR, WASHINGTON SWISHER (1845–1918)
Washington Swisher Rector, Fisher County organizer, son of Jesse and Sarah (Stout) Rector, was born in Rhea County, Tennessee, near the town of Washington, on November 22, 1845. At the age of sixteen he left home to fight for the Confederacy as a member of Company E, Twenty-sixth Infantry. He was captured in 1864 and imprisoned at Camp Chase, Ohio, for eleven months. He entered Sequatchie College in Tennessee in 1867 and received a bachelor of science degree in 1870.
Because of poor economic conditions after the war, Rector was among the multitudes who left the South and moved to Texas. He settled in 1873 at Johnson’s Station. He was qualified to teach and obtained contracts to conduct schools in Tarrant and Johnson counties. While teaching at Caddo Grove, he married one of his former pupils, Myra Melinda Selvidge, who had been born in Reliance, Tennessee, in 1859. Their marriage took place on January 6, 1878, in Tarrant County. In 1882 the Rectors moved to Indian Gap, Hamilton County, where he continued to teach school.
The state of Texas was offering attractive land deals in the western part of the state, so in 1885 the family and their four children moved to Fisher County. Rector bought 320 acres of land for three dollars an acre near Rotan. He made concrete blocks to built their homestead, which still stands. A large gypsum mill is located nearby. Rector helped organize Fisher County and worked on land surveys in the area. He was appointed county clerk in 1887. He was elected county and district clerk for 1888–92. He made his livelihood raising fine dairy cattle, and he had the first dairy in the county.
He was active in the Immigration Society, which was formed to attract colonies of new settlers to Fisher County. He helped organize the Masonic lodge in Rotan in 1907. He was a Methodist. Fourteen children were born to W. S. and Myra Melinda Rector. Several of the daughters became teachers and taught in nearby community schools.
In the early 1900s eight of the sons and daughters moved to California. They were joined in 1917 by their parents, who established a permanent home there. Rector died in Madera, California, on December 15, 1918. A collection of more than 650 of his letters, documents, photographs, and manuscripts covers events in the lives of family and friends and embraces a wide variety of subjects. The collection was given to the Barker Texas History Center at the University of Texas at Austin in 1985.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: Delila M. and Josie M. Baird, Early Fisher County Families: A Biographical History, 1876–1910 (Rotan, Texas, 1976). Levi Brimner Salmans, History of the Descendants of John Jacob Rector (Guanajuato, Mexico, 1936; photostat, Texas State Library Genealogy Collection, Austin).
Margaret Louise Rector (1920-2005)
Germanna Family Tree includes descent from the Germanna Broyles, Fishback, Fleischman, Hitt, Otterbach, Rector, and Wilhoit families
http://trees.ancestry.com/tree/2251022/family?fpid=-1300042776#Germanna Family Tree=-1300068482