Joseph L. Hood, early settler, businessman, and legislator, was born in North Carolina in 1803. When he applied for Texas citizenship at Nacogdoches in December 1829, he described himself as Catholic, unmarried, and a schoolteacher. On December 12, 1834, he received title to a league of land in the area that later became Bell County. In 1835 he represented the Municipality of Viesca at the Consultation and on the General Council. The General Council appointed him judge at Viesca and designated him as an agent to receive money due the Mexican government and to be transferred for use of the people of Texas. Hood was a business associate of Eliel Melton at Nacogdoches before 1836. He probably went to San Antonio about the time of the Texas Revolution. He was the first elected sheriff of Bexar County on May 1, 1837, and reelected in 1839. Hood was killed in the Council House Fight on March 19, 1840.