Gill, John Porter (1801–1869)

By: Thomas W. Cutrer

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: November 29, 2019

John Porter Gill, soldier of the Texas revolution, was born in Alabama on August 9, 1801, and moved to Texas in May 1831. On August 9, 1835, he joined ninety-three other Brazoria residents in signing a call for a convention "to quiet the present excitement and promote the general interest of Texas." In the revolution, however, Gill was elected first lieutenant of Capt. John York's company of volunteers at the siege of Bexar and on December 8 commanded a detachment that reinforced the beleaguered Texans occupying Zambrano Row opposite the town's Main Plaza. Gill served as first lieutenant of Capt. Thomas H. McIntire's Fifth Company of Col. Sidney Sherman's Second Regiment, Texas Volunteers, at the battle of San Jacinto, and afterward was elected first lieutenant of Capt. Washington H. Secrest's company of Washington Cavalry. He served from June 1836 until his discharge on October 23, 1836.

On January 21, 1837, Gill was elected captain of one of the two companies of Brazoria County militia in the battalion of Maj. Willis A. Faris. By 1840 he owned four town lots in Columbia in partnership with Daniel T. Fitchett. He was elected justice of the peace of Brazoria County's first precinct on August 4, 1844. On January 17, 1852, Gill received 320 acres of bounty land in Lavaca County for his military service, and on October 11, 1870, his heirs received an additional 640 acres in Hunt County for his participation at San Jacinto. At some time before his death on April 19, 1869, Gill moved to Fort Bend County. He was single when he moved to Texas and apparently never married. His brother Robert I. Gill of Gonzales County was the principal beneficiary of his estate.

In 1848 a thirty-nine-year-old John Gill of Travis County enlisted for two six-month terms in Capt. Henry E. McCulloch's company of Texas Rangers during the Mexican War. This John Gill died in 1851, and McCulloch was named administrator of his estate.

Compiled Index to Elected and Appointed Officials of the Republic of Texas, 1835–1846 (Austin: State Archives, Texas State Library, 1981). John H. Jenkins, ed., The Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835–1836 (10 vols., Austin: Presidial Press, 1973). Telegraph and Texas Register, January 27, 1837. Texas State Gazette, November 16, 1850, January 10, 1852.

Time Periods:
  • Texas Revolution

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

Thomas W. Cutrer, “Gill, John Porter,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed July 01, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

November 29, 2019