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MCLENNAN'S BLUFF

MCLENNAN'S BLUFF. McLennan's Bluff, a steep bank on the northwest shore of Rosebud Lake a mile west of Rosebud near Pond Creek in southwest Falls County (at 31°04' N, 97°00' W), is on land of the original league granted to Neil McLennan by Coahuila and Texas on July 28, 1835. The bluff, on which McLennan's home was located, is 400 feet above the surface of the lake. In 1835 three McLennan brothers, who had immigrated from Scotland to North Carolina and later resided in Florida, brought their families to Texas to join Sterling Clack Robertson's colony, sailing up the Brazos River from its mouth and eventually stopping at Sugar Loaf on Pond Creek, later called McLennan's Bluff. After receiving grants on Pond Creek and building houses on the bluff that also overlooked rolling prairie land, the families were threatened by Indians, who had posed few problems for settlers in the area during the early 1830s, but who were beginning to increase their attacks on white settlers. In the spring of 1836 Indians raided the Laughlin McLennan household, killing Laughlin, his wife, and his crippled mother, whose head they split with an ax before casting her body into the house and setting everything on fire. Three children were taken into captivity, during which two of them died; the third one, a seven-year-old boy, was adopted by the Indians and the boy rejoined his relatives in 1846. In the spring of 1837 the Indians attacked Neil McLennan, his son John, and his young slave. Neil and his son escaped, but the slave was taken prisoner; however, through the mediation of friendly Indians and by his own efforts, he was released and returned to his master. After living at the site for ten years, the McLennans abandoned their home, and Neil McLennan eventually exchanged his land on Pond Creek for claims on the Bosque River near Waco.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Lelia M. Batte, History of Milam County, Texas (San Antonio: Naylor, 1956). Malcolm D. McLean, comp. and ed., Papers Concerning Robertson's Colony in Texas (13 vols., Fort Worth: Texas Christian University Press, 1974–76; Arlington: University of Texas at Arlington Press, 1977–87). A Memorial and Biographical History of McLennan, Falls, Bell, and Coryell Counties (Chicago: Lewis, 1893; rpt., St. Louis: Ingmire, 1984). Lillian S. St. Romain, Western Falls County, Texas (Austin: Texas State Historical Association, 1951).

Evelyn Clark Longwell

Citation

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

Evelyn Clark Longwell, "MCLENNAN'S BLUFF," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/rjm51), accessed December 24, 2014. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.