HALL, WARREN D. C.
HALL, WARREN D. C. (1794–1867). Warren D. C. Hall, early settler, was born in Union County, South Carolina, in 1794, the son of Warren and Mary Sims Hall. As a youth, he moved with his family to Louisiana. He studied law in Natchitoches and in 1812 joined the Mexican Republican Army of the North, under José Bernardo Gutiérrez de Lara and Augustus W. Magee. He was elected a captain in the Gutiérrez-Magee expedition and participated in the opening engagements, including the battle of Rosillo in 1813. He resigned his command and returned to Louisiana in protest against the butchery of royalist prisoners, reportedly ordered by Gutiérrez, at Alazán Heights. In November 1814, Hall volunteered to serve six months with a company of Louisiana volunteers and participated in the defense of New Orleans against the British as the War of 1812 ended. He received a bounty land warrant for 160 acres for his service.
In 1816–1817 Hall participated in filibustering expeditions, including one led by Francisco Xavier Mina and Gen. Louis Michel Aury that occupied Galveston Island. He also supported the revolutionary movement headed by Gen. James Long in 1819–1820. Though he allegedly befriended Jean Laffite on Galveston Island, Hall took no part in the buccaneer’s sometimes questionable activities.
In November 1828 Hall and his wife, Julietta, a native of New York, settled near Columbia in Brazoria County. After taking an oath of allegiance to the Mexican government on December 21, 1829, Hall quickly became active in colonial affairs. In 1832 he was second in command of the Texans at Anahuac in the protest against John Davis Bradburn and participated in the battle of Velasco. In October he attended the Convention of 1832 at San Felipe as a delegate from Liberty Municipality. Affairs were for a time quiet, and Hall retired to his farm. He was among the charter members of the first Masonic lodge in Texas, organized at Brazoria by John A. Wharton in 1834, and helped train William T. Austin for a duel with Wharton that year.
In 1835 Hall was made a member of the committee of safety at Columbia, and in November represented Columbia at the Consultation. After the revolution broke out he was able to advance Stephen F. Austin $500 in an 1835 campaign for "expresses, spies, corn, beeves, etc." Hall was appointed adjutant general by David G. Burnet early in 1836 and later acted as secretary of war of the Republic of Texas while Thomas J. Rusk was with the army. Hall held the rank of colonel and commanded the post at Velasco until May 26, after independence had been won at San Jacinto. He again served the republic in September 1842, when he joined the forces that expelled Adrián Woll.
After 1836 Hall practiced law in Brazoria County for several years and served three years (1843–46) as justice of the peace. He established China Grove Plantation, fourteen miles south of Houston, and raised sugar. Tax rolls for 1840 showed that he owned more than 17,000 acres of land and ninety slaves. In 1843, however, financial difficulties, which plagued him throughout his years in Texas, forced him to sell China Grove to Albert Sidney Johnston. He continued to reside in Brazoria County during the early 1850s when he surveyed and speculated in choice bottomland in Harris County and helped finance the building of the Columbus Tap Railroad.
By January 1853, Hall moved to west Galveston Island where is resided at a home called “Three Trees” and maintained a ferry to Velasco. He died of a stroke in Galveston in April 1867 and was buried in the Trinity Episcopal Cemetery there. His wife Juliette lived in Galveston until her death in March 1878. Hall County, which was created in 1876 and organized in 1890, was named in honor of Warren D. C. Hall.
Virginia Browder, Hall County Heritage Trails, 1890–1980 (2 vols., Canyon, Texas: Staked Plains, 1982, 1983). Zachary T. Fulmore, History and Geography of Texas As Told in County Names (Austin: Steck, 1915; facsimile, 1935). Texas House of Representatives, Biographical Directory of the Texan Conventions and Congresses, 1832–1845 (Austin: Book Exchange, 1941). Jesse A. Ziegler, Wave of the Gulf (San Antonio: Naylor, 1938).
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.H. Allen Anderson and Rose Mary Fritz, "HALL, WARREN D. C.," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fha23), accessed January 31, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Modified on March 21, 2011. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.