Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Holland Family, by Diana Holland Calderon

Francis Holland D.O.B. 1776 Canada; Wife: Margaret Buck

THE HOLLANDS OF AUSTIN"S COLONY (now) GRIMES COUNTY, TEXAS by Roy E. Gibson Francis Holland (Sr), the father of one of the martyrs of the Alamo (Tapley Holland), was born about 1780-1785 (believed to have been Canada). On Oct. 29,1804 in Scioto County, Ohio he married miss Margaret Buck. Her parents are ,however a Thomas and Massie Buck were listed as pioneer settlers of Scioto County,Ohio. This marriage was performed by one Elyjah Glover, a justice of the peace. Their marriage was blessed with six(6) known children,namely James,Susanna"Susan",Tapley,Francis, Jr."Frank", William and Nancy.

Scioto County was formed in 1803 from Adam County,(1797) and Washington County(1788) which were original counties from the Northwest Territory. There is no early probated record,will or estate settlement in Scioto County,that would document his percentage,therefore it is assumed that he, his brother William and sister Mary,moved into the now Scioto County, Ohio area in their teens or early twenties. Francis is listed among pioneers of this county for the period 1776-1806. The lack of land records, deeds or grants,to Francis or his brother William is not fully understood by this compiler/copier. Could it be that many of the pioneers leased or rented their land from the government or--some Land Co.?The negative land records almost eliminates knowing the name of the township in which Francis Holland and his family lived. The man that performed the marriage rites between his sister Mary Holland and William Peterson was a justice of the peace for Valley Township,Scioto Co.,Ohio. This was in 1805.Francis Holland did serve at least for a short time in the military service. He is listed as a private in Capt. John Lindsey's Company; This said company is probably from Scioto County. It is recorded he served from July 28 until Aug. 18 1813. A veteran of the War of 1812 would be indicated in this case.In 1816 Francis and William Holland,brothers, were pioneer residents of Jackson Co. Ohio. This being the year Jackson County was formed from Pike County.,which in turn was formed from Scioto, County in 1815. Since our subject from all known records lived in Scioto County from 1804 or before,until about 1816 and in Jackson County from 1816-1820 it is reasonably assumed that Francis and Margaret(Buck) Holland's children,James,Susanna,Tapley,and Francis"Frank" were natives of Scioto County, Ohio while the two youngest,William and Nancy were natives of Jackson Co.In 1816-1820 at the time Francis and William and their families were residents of Jackson County, Ohio their residency was in the township of Franklin. The area of their residence in Franklin Township became Hamilton Township on Dec. 6 1825(after the Hollands had moved away).Francis' land consisted of 75 acres, now located in Hamilton Township, Range 19,Township5,Section 28 east one-half of northeast quadrant. His property was along Holland Creek, which was most likely named for him and/or his brother. Holland Creek's course is as follows:heads sec. 24,R19,Hamilton Township,Jackson Co. Ohio;NW of sec. 25,R19,same Township, Scioto Co., Ohio. The above property of Francis Holland was carried on the tax list or rolls of Jackson County as late as 1838.The Holland brothers participated in the early elections of Franklin Township,Jackson Co. Ohio. Francis was one of the election officers "Clerk",when the election for justices was held in 1816. When the votes were counted, April 6, 1816 the record shows that Francis Holland received 36 votes for Commissioner;however he was not one of the three winners.Court records of Jackson Co.,Ohio show that on July 24,1817, Francis Holland was one of the witnesses against one Burgess Squires for paying two counterfeit notes to the county sheriff,Abraham Welch. The conviction of Squires led to the eventual indictment of Welch for counterfeiting. His bond was set at 500.00 with Francis Holland being one of the three securities. Welch's case was called for the second time on Monday Mar. 23 1818; he failed to appear as in the first. This called for his bond to be forfeited. These court actions put an end to the circulation of counterfeit money in Jackson County.Neither Francis nor William Holland were enumerated in Jackson nor any other county in Ohio in the census of 1820;this applies also to the state of Indiana. Either the enumerator missed them or they had started their migratory move south and west, about the summer of 1820. Their mode of transportation was most likely by riverboat via the Ohio and Missouri Rivers.It is not clearly known where they stopped along the way,some authors say Kentucky,and Tennessee, but they were in the State of Louisiana no later than 1821. In 1821 they moved from Cheneyville, Louisiana to what is now Sabine County, Texas.

In the year of 1822 Francis Holland with a large group of relatives arrived in Grimes County Texas(now known to have been a part of Stephen F. Austin's "Old Three Hundred" RRS) The group camped near the Andrew Millican place. Francis Holland found the area to his liking while Millican wanted to move on. Francis bought Millican's property which was a league of land located along both sides of Ten-Mile Creek some three and one-half (3 1/2) miles southwest of the present town of Anderson, Grimes County, Texas. Millican's land also included improvements. Francis Holland and his relatives settled here These relatives were Francis' wife Margaret, and their children;namely:James,Susanna"Susan",Tapley,Francis,Jr."Frank",William and Nancy.Also the family of William Holland(Francis' brother) which included William's wife,Susannah,their children; Catherine"Katy", Sarah, and a daughter who's name is not known(believed to be Nancy who later married a man named Stewart).The sister of Francis and William; Mary Holland Peterson and her two sons. Mary was a medical doctor and was at that time a widow.There was also a John and Wesley Fisher reported to be related to the Hollands(Their relationship is unclear,perhaps related to the wives of Francis and William Holland).???????The land granted to Francis and William Holland was finalized on Aug. 10,1824. Their leagues were adjacent to the property purchased from Andrew Millican in 1822 and along the Ten-Mile Creek. Due to the large number of Hollands and/or relatives settling this creek , the name was changed from "Ten-Mile" to "Holland Creek"(at present June 21,1996), it is still called Holland Creek. RRS) Therefore our subject had a creek in Jackson County Ohio and in Grimes County, Texas bearing the name "Holland Creek".

About three and one-half miles out of Anderson in Grimes County, Texas stands what is believed to be the oldest Anglo house in Texas.It is the Francis Holland house. Originally the house was a cabin or some cabins built by a colonist named Andrew Millican in 1821.According to W.P. Zuber, Andrew Millican settled on the Coshattee Trace in 1821 on the southwest side of Ten-Mile Creek, "Where he erected a set of substantial log houses, and enclosed and cultivated a farm on which he raised one(1) crop of corn.The Coshattee Trace was a section of the old"Contraband Road" which ran through Grimes County and was used by smugglers in their illicit dealings between Alexandria, La. and the Rio Grande River.The Coshattee Indians used it for their hunting grounds,therefore the name the" Coshattee Trace".Dating from the earliest days of Stephen F. Austin's "Old Three Hundred" , the house has been the scene of more tragedy than triumph.Located on the early immigrant trails the house was a place of hospitality for early colonists as they traveled toward the LaBahia Crossing of the Brazos River and down to San Filepe de Austin. It was a gathering place for colonists as they came to cast their votes for office in the Austin Colony.Most significantly however, this sturdy log cabin was the boyhood home of heroes in the Texas cause. From it's door went forth three young men to answer the call to arms in the autumn of 1835. These brave young men were James Holland, Tapley Holland and Francis"Frank" Holland, Jr. Within days they fighting for the independence of Texas at old Mission Concepcion near Bexar.

In the spring of 1836(1834?),as dreaded cholera crept up the Brazos disease took all of the residents still there,first young William, who had curvature of the spine and had been an invalid since birth,then Francis and Margaret.(one report says the parents died first).

James contracted measles during the spring of 1836 that settled in his lungs(pneumonia).Frank took him home and tried to nurse him back to health but in the fall of 1836 James Holland died at the home of his sister Susanna(Holland)Burney.

In 1838, Francis Holland,Jr."Frank" was employed by some land-owners and surveyors headed by William F. Sparks to go with them beyond the frontier as their "huntsman".Near the source of Richland Creek, about 12 miles from the present day town of Corsicana,Navarro County, Texas, Frank was killed by some Indians. It is ironic that this expert Indian fighter,well trained by his old Indian fighter father, to protect himself, should one day be killed by Indians.His fellow pioneers realizing the danger to themselves, returned home. Some years later a friend found some of the expeditions rusty equipment and Frank's bones which he buried. The grave site is .Tapley Holland had joined his brothers in enlisting in Capt. Joseph L. Bennett's regiment of the Texas Army. When James became ill and Frank left to take him back home, Tapley stayed. He was in the fighting at Concepcion and the storming of San Antonio in December of 1835 then in the garrison at the Alamo,and when Col. William B. Travis stood before his men saying there was no longer hope for reinforcements,he gave them the choice to try to escape before the battle began or staying to fight to the end;.according to the Moses Rose story of the battle of the Alamo, Tapley Holland was the first to volunteer his life. When Col.William B. Travis drew the line with his sword and invited all who would stand beside him to cross over the line, after a moment of silence,young Tapley leaped over the line with a bound saying "Let me give a life for Texas".(all accounts give the "Moses Rose Story full credit)His heroism is recorded on a monument on the courthouse grounds in Anderson and a painting depicting the "line" scene hangs in the Alamo as well as a portrait of Tapley with a plaque that reads: Tapley Holland was the second son of Francis Holland, who came to with his wife and six children from Louisiana to settle in what is now Grimes County, Texas.On March 6 1836 the Alamo fell and more than one hundred and eighty brave men died. One of them was Tapley Holland.In San Filepe de Austin, the Telegraph and Texas Register printed the tragic news from Bexar as the reports spread throughout the Colony. In the issue of March 24,1836, the name of Tapley Holland was printed in a casualty list.

This is the Holland House. But there are no Hollands anymore.

The brother of Francis, William and his wife Susannah had died shortly after their arrival in Texas leaving three daughters who then came to live with Francis and Margaret. Then in the brief span between the spring of 1834/1936 and the fall of 1838, Francis, his wife Margaret and all four of their sons had died.All of the daughters survived to become adults.

Francis Holland's residency in Texas the last fourteen years of his life 1822-1836 has been fairly documented for the time and place. Our subject appears to have been the type of person highly sought by Stephen F. Austin for his colony; That is, industrious,honorable and law-abiding. The records show he was quite active in the Colony. Among these activities were;served terms as Alcalde(Judge) for his district; in Dec. 1829 he was elected Commisario to the precinct of Viesca; He was presiding judge for the elections at least part of the time, for his home was the voting place as early as Nov. 1829. In 1832 he was delegate to the Convention that met at San Felipe de Austin: Served as a second sergeant in the 1st Militia organized in the municipality of Austin Mar 21,1829. He was without a doubt a literate person, and had not death occurred he would have most certainly been a participant in the Texas Revolution.

It has been reported that their was an epidemic of Cholera that killed some of the Holland family.It is known that William Holland, his wife, Susannah as well as Francis Holland, his wife Margaret and their sons William and James all died here in the year 1834/36. (It is known that James died from measles complications in the fall of 1836.

Questions are;Where are these people buried, was their a family cemetery on the property of Francis Holland? Are there any grave markers?

(more info is on the page but most of it is repetitive)


  1. Wes, you will not find headstones for any of the Francis Holland family. They were orginally interred at a church cemetery near their home, but local oral history has that the church was taken over by another group at some point and all of the old headstones were removed. The graves were not dug up though. These Texas pioneers rest unmarked beneath the Texas soil. As we know, Tapley Holland's ashes were scattered to the winds and varmits along with the others who died at the Alamo.
    I am descended through Francis Holland's daughter, Susannah Holland Burney.
    Debbie Miranda

  2. Hello, do you know if Tapley Holland ever married or had any children


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