Texas History Page

 

Evidence that Owen Shannon Died in 1834

   This page also explains why Owen Shannon only had one quarter of his Headright League left at the time of his death.  See Owen Shannon's Will.

   Montgomery County historians have strongly debated the year that Owen Shannon died for a long time. We are pleased to present this primary historical document that puts the question to rest.

   Below is the "Statement of Facts" filed in the Montgomery County District Court, September 13, 1850 in Case # 670 styled "James McCown vs. The Widow and heirs of Owen Shannon Decd."  This document is located on the 21st page of Civil Records, District Court, 1848-1870 in the Montgomery County District Clerk's Office in Conroe, Texas.

Statement of Facts - Top of Page

Statement of Facts - Top of Page

Statement of Facts - Bottom of Page

Statement of Facts - Bottom of Page

 

James McCown                                              Statement of facts

vs.

The Widow and heirs of Owen Shannon Decd.

 

In this Cause plaintiff read in evidence deeds set forth as exhibits in his petition.  He also read the Will of Owen Shannon a copy of which is herewith filed marked H.  He also read the deed from Margaret Shannon to Charles Garrett herewith copied and filed marked I,  he also read the deed from Jacob Shannon to Charles Garrett a copy of which is herewith filed marked K.  He proved by H. H. Goff that in 1831 or about that time Owen Shannon then at the Red Lands persuaded Charles Garrett to emigrate to this part of the State  that Garrett objected because he had no Lands  that Owen Shannon offered as an enducement to get him to come that he would give him land   that Garrett did come and live on the land in question & he & those who hold under him have continued to hold quiet and uninterrupted possession ever since.  Jacob Shannon proved that Owen Shannon died in 1834  that previous to his death a contract was verbally made between him his Father Owen Shannon and said Garrett Owens son in law   that the Headright League of said Owen should be equally divided between the three, that shortly thereafter witness went off on Trinity and in his absence a new arrangement had been made by the parties in his absence and Thomas Taylor was to get half of the League for clearing it out of the land office and said Owen and Garrett as witnesses understood from the parties were to have the other half  Witness being left out in the arrangement   that in the life time of said Owen the said Garrett took possession of said land under said second contract and so continued to keep and have possession of the same and with those who hold under him have continued the possession quietly and uninterruptedly to this time and it has been generally understood before and since the death of said Owen Shannon that the land was Garrett’s    I certify that the above statement contains all the evidence adduced in this cause done in open Court September 13, 1850

 

C.W. Buckley Judge 7th Jud. District

 

[The far left-hand margin of "page 21" not scanned here reads as follows:]

Filed September 13th 1850   H.R. Bell Clk  Dis Court M.C.

 

Enlarged

 

Owen Shannon Died in 1834

 

       "...since.    Jacob Shannon proved that Owen Shannon died in 1834   that previous to his death a contract was verbally made between him his Father Owen Shannon and said Garrett Owen's son in law that the Headright..."

 

   The Statement of Facts is signed C. W. Buckley, Judge 7th Judicial District, "I certify that the above statement contains all the evidence adduced in the cause done in open Court September 13th, 1850."  The Handbook of Texas Online says the Judge of the 7th Judicial District at the time was Constantine W. Buckley

 

   The Civil Records, District Court , 1848-1870 in the Montgomery County District Clerks Office does not have page numbers.  This page is numbered 21 as it is the 21st handwritten page from the front of the book.  We have designated it page 21 to aid researchers in locating it in the future.

 

   I have been working on the the fact that Owen Shannon only had "One Quarter League of land being in the neighborhood of Lake Creek" to leave his wife Margaret. According to the Statement of Facts, as well as other deeds, Owen Shannon gave half of his League to Thomas Taylor for "clearing it out" of Stephen F. Austin's office in San Felipe (i.e.Taylor paid all the fees and costs).  [Owen Shannon was not alone in this.  Rutha Shannon Miller cleared Jacob Shannon's League of land out of Stephen F. Austin's office in San Felipe also.  In 1831, neither Owen Shannon nor Jacob Shannon had enough money to clear their own Headright Leagues.  They did not operate trading posts and they were both just farmers as proven by Stephen F. Austin's Register of Families.  Jacob Shannon signed the 1833 Articles of Agreement (See Lake Creek Settlement) memorializing that his sister Rutha Shannon Miller paid the fees to Austin and promising her half the Jacob Shannon League in return.  Jacob Shannon was not forthcoming with his sister's  land and she had to sue him for her half of the League in 1855 in Montgomery County District Court Case # 923.] 

   As proven by the 1850 Statement of Facts, Owen Shannon induced Charles Garrett to come settle on his League by giving him a quarter of it, "...he [James McCown] proved by H. H. Goff that in 1831 or about that time Owen Shannon then at the Red Lands persuaded Charles Garrett to emigrate to this part of the State  that he would as an enducement to get him to come that he would give him land   that Garrett did come and live on the land in question & he & those who hold under him have continued to hold quiet and uninterupted possession ever since."  Charles Garrett's home was on this quarter league of  the Owen Shannon League.  See the 1835 Deed Margaret Shannon to Charles Garrett on the Lake Creek Settlement page, "At the house of Charles Garrett in the Precinct of Lake Creek upon San Jacinto, Before the witnesses C. B. Stewart and Henry Goff, I Margaret Shannon do declare that Owen Shannon deceased my late husband did in his life time donate and give in fee simple and perpetual right to the citizen above named Charles Garrett one quarter of a League of Land , granted to him the said Owen Shannon as a colonist by the State of Coahuila and Texas." 

 

   Owen Shannon gave half his League to Thomas Taylor and one quarter of his League to Charles Garrett.  This is why he only had one quarter league of land to will to his wife Margaret Mongomery Shannon. 

 

   We can now put the year of Owen Shannon's death to rest once and for all.  We also know why after receiving a full Leauge of land in 1831 Owen Shannon only had a fourth of it three years later in 1834.