Hutcheson, John William (1829–1862)

By: Joanne Seale Wilson

Type: Biography

Published: November 15, 2007

John William Hutcheson, lawyer, member of the Texas Secession Convention, and Confederate soldier, was born in October 1829 in Mecklenburg County, Virginia, the oldest son of Charles Sterling and Mary (Mitchell) Hutcheson. His younger brother Joseph Chappell Hutcheson, served in the Texas Legislature after the Civil War. John Hutcheson attended Randolph Macon College, in Boydton, Virginia, from 1846 to 1850 and afterwards the University of Virginia Law School, graduating in 1852. He was then admitted to the Virginia bar and in 1853 emigrated to Texas and set up a law practice in Anderson, Grimes County.

On September 11, 1855, he married Laura Baker, daughter of Isaac Baker from nearby Plantersville. They had one daughter, Laura, born in 1857. William was admitted to the State Bar of Texas on February 10, 1858, and practiced with partner Isham G. Searcy. He was a Mason.

He was an unopposed candidate for the State Senate at the time of Fort Sumter. When war was threatened he withdrew his candidacy and was voted instead a member of the Texas State Convention which passed the Secession Ordinance in 1861. Once Texas had seceded, Hutcheson joined a cavalry troop, the Grimes County Greys, which became Company G, Fourth Texas Infantry Regiment. He was elected captain. Hutcheson and his company, which formed part of Hood's Texas Brigade, fought at the Battle of West Point on the York River on May 7, 1862.

J.W. Hutcheson was fatally wounded while leading a charge at the Battle of Gaines' Mill on June 27, 1862. He died on June 29, 1862. His obituary in the Richmond Christian Advocate of August 21, 1862, reads: "Cool and self possessed, he requested a friend to write to his father and say that he fell discharging his duty and defending his country from a ruthless foe—He leaves a wife and one child, with a number of dear friends, to mourn his death."

Edward C. Hutcheson, The Freedom Tree: A Chapter from the Saga of Texas (Waco: Texian Press, 1970). John William Hutcheson Papers, 1852–1903, MS037, Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library, Rice University. Richmond Christian Advocate, August 21, 1862. Joanne Hutcheson Seale Wilson, John William Hutcheson: Pioneering Texan 1829–1862 (Conroe, Texas: Montgomery County Genealogical & Historical Society, Inc., 2006).

Time Periods:
  • Civil War

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

Joanne Seale Wilson, “Hutcheson, John William,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed July 01, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

November 15, 2007

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