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Dillard, John Henry (1805–1836)

Bill Groneman Biography Entry

John Henry Dillard, Alamo defender, son of William and Sarah Dillard, was born in Smith County, Tennessee, in 1805. On July 19, 1820, Dillard married Sarah Jacobs in Wilson County, Tennessee, and the couple produced three children named Susan, John Henry II, and Samuel. He immigrated to Texas with Sutherland Mayfield to establish residence, and settled in the Robertson Colony at Nashville-on-the-Brazos (present day Milam, Texas). He participated in the Texas Revolution after joining Col. George English's Volunteer Company. He volunteered to serve in the Alamo garrison and died in the battle of the Alamo on March 6, 1836. Dillard's body was cremated and interred in the chapel at the Alamo in San Antonio. Following his death, Mayfield returned to Tennesse, married Dillard's widow in 1837, and relocated the family to Washington County in 1838 followed by Reagor Springs, Ellis County in 1844. Sutherland died in Navarro, Texas, in 1848 and Sarah passed away in February 1854. Her children relocated to Hill County Dillard's heirs inherited his land grants in Hill (1600 acres), Williamson, and Johnson (320 acres) Counties.

Daughters of the Republic of Texas, Muster Rolls of the Texas Revolution (Austin, 1986). Bill Groneman, Alamo Defenders (Austin: Eakin, 1990).

Time Periods:

  • Texas Revolution

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

Bill Groneman, “Dillard, John Henry,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed June 24, 2021,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

December 1, 1994
August 26, 2015

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