James C. Allen, soldier, arrived in Texas on June 29, 1836, as captain of the seventy-five-member Buckeye Rangers. He was a former editor of the Cincinnati Republican and a friend of its owner, Richard Disney, a member of James W. Fannin's command massacred at Goliad. He was also a relative of Henry S. Stouffer, who participated in the battle of San Jacinto. The Buckeye Rangers left Cincinnati on June 5, 1836, for New Orleans and Texas. Allen may have been the Captain Allen referred to in a letter from Edward Hall to Bailey Hardeman dated June 18, 1836, at New Orleans. This Captain Allen was given $4,000 to charter a boat for 100 men. Four or five days later he had not done so, and he refused to take passage on the Pennsylvania. The Buckeye Rangers eventually arrived on the San Jacinto. When forces led by Col. Henry W. Millard went to Velasco to capture Gen. Antonio López de Santa Anna and arrest President David Burnet, Captain Allen promised Burnet the protection of the Buckeye Rangers.
In September 1836 Allen was told that his command was attached to the command of Gen. Thomas Jefferson Green. Ill will arose between Allen and Green's adjutant, Leon Dyer, after which Allen's company was assigned to Colonel Harrison's regiment. By October 9, 1836, Allen had resigned his captaincy and been appointed aide-de-camp to Gen. Thomas J. Rusk. His company had broken up because of discontent over the election of a new captain and their assignment. A letter to the Telegraph and Texas Register of July 7, 1838, signed "A Buckeye Ranger," defends Allen from criticism printed in another paper over an event in October 1836, when Allen delivered four prisoners to Columbia. An officer there refused to accept them, so Allen left the papers on them with Gen. Sam Houston's secretary and maintained custody of the prisoners. Two days later Houston returned and sent a message to Allen asking him to come at once. Allen had the messenger take a reply to Houston asking to be excused until the next day. Houston then ordered his arrest, and when Allen was brought to him harsh words were exchanged; Houston told Allen that he would receive a dishonorable discharge. Friends of Houston intervened, and Allen was allowed to retire and close his account with the paymaster. Allen was married and had children. He did not apply for bounty land.
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Mary Whatley Clarke, Thomas J. Rusk: Soldier, Statesman, Jurist (Austin: Jenkins, 1971). Daughters of the Republic of Texas, Muster Rolls of the Texas Revolution (Austin, 1986). John H. Jenkins, ed., The Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835–1836 (10 vols., Austin: Presidial Press, 1973). Louis Wiltz Kemp Papers, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin. Marilyn McAdams Sibley, "Letters from the Texas Army, Autumn, 1836: Leon Dyer to Thomas J. Green," Southwestern Historical Quarterly 72 (January 1969).
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.
John G. Johnson,
“Allen, James C.,”
Handbook of Texas Online,
accessed May 25, 2022,
Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Original Publication Date:
November 1, 1994
Most Recent Revision Date:
June 16, 2020