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WHITE, AMY COMSTOCK

WHITE, AMY COMSTOCK (1775–1853). Amy Comstock White, early settler, was born on March 10, 1775, in Rhode Island to William and Rachel (Aldrich) Comstock, who migrated to St. Martinville in Spanish Louisiana. She was baptized a Catholic in the church at Opelousas on July 25, 1789, and married William White, older brother of James Taylor White in St. Martin's Church on January 31, 1791. She and her husband settled near his brothers on the lower Vermillion River below Abbeville, where she bore eleven children between 1792 and 1819 and became a widow on October 8, 1821. On the advice of Humphrey Jackson, her widowed brother-in-law, Amy White decided to move in 1824 to Galveston Bay, where she and her married sons could each receive a league of land. She claimed her 4,428 acres on the west side of the San Jacinto River on August 16, 1824, while her eldest son, Reuben White, located his on August 19 on the east bank, opposite his mother and below Jackson's plot. White then returned to Louisiana where she and the other heirs of her husband settled his estate on September 14, 1824. Soon thereafter the widow and her four minor children left for the San Jacinto River in company with Reuben and his wife and three children; son George; and her daughter and son-in-law, Mary and William Whitlock and their four children. Another son, Jesse, arrived in 1830. Amy White did not depend on her male relatives to take care of her business, and in June 1825 she wrote to Stephen F. Austin that surveyor Isaac Hughes had included another person's home in her league without her knowledge, and the man was not willing to sell the improvement. By May 28, 1828, Amy White had married William Swail and deeded her league to him. The couple moved to his league on the west side of the Trinity River, just above Liberty, where Swail probably died some time before 1838. At age sixty-two Amy White Swail petitioned the Liberty board of land commissioners (as Amy White) for her allotted labor of land, which was granted on January 19, 1838. The biographer of the White clan says that she died in 1853 in either Harris County or Liberty County.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Gifford E. White, James Taylor White of Virginia (Austin, 1982). Gifford E. White, Amy White of the Old 300 (Austin: Nortex, 1986).

Margaret Swett Henson

Citation

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Margaret Swett Henson, "WHITE, AMY COMSTOCK," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fwh18), accessed September 17, 2014. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.