Jones, Henry (1789–1861)

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: February 1, 1995

Henry Jones, early Texas official and one of Stephen F. Austin's Old Three Hundred colonists, was born in Richmond, Virginia, on March 15, 1789. In 1817 he and his brother John went by flatboat to New Orleans and up the Mississippi River to the mouth of the White River, where they joined Martin Varner for hunting and trapping in the Missouri Territory. Sometime before 1820 Jones began operating a ferry across the Red River just above the mouth of Little Pine Creek and gave his name to the settlement of Jonesborough. In January 1821 he married Nancy Styles, either on the Red River or in Missouri; they became the parents of twelve children, the first of whom was born in Texas in 1822. In April 1824 Jones voted in an election in the Austin colony and on July 8, 1824, received title to a sitio in what is now Fort Bend County. The census of 1826 listed him as a stock raiser with a wife, two infant sons, and one servant. In 1830 the Jones home, eight miles below the site of present Richmond, served as a voting place. Attorney William B. Travis, riding between San Felipe and Brazoria as part of his practice, frequently stopped at the Jones plantation. In the spring of 1836 Jones was detailed to guard the fleeing families on the Runaway Scrape. He fell ill, however, and had to be taken by wagon from his plantation before the arrival of the Mexican army. Mexican troops camped at his river landing, from which they tried to capture the steamboat Yellow Stone with lassos. In 1837 Jones served on the Fort Bend County grand jury. The next year he was the administrator of his brother John's estate. In 1860 the Jones property was valued at $200,000. Jones died on June 8, 1861.

Andrew Jackson Sowell, History of Fort Bend County (Houston: Coyle, 1904; rpt, Richmond, Texas: Fort Bend County Historical Museum, 1974). William Barret Travis, Diary, ed. Robert E. Davis (Waco: Texian Press, 1966). Clarence Wharton, Wharton's History of Fort Bend County (San Antonio: Naylor, 1939).
Time Periods:
  • Mexican Texas

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

Anonymous, “Jones, Henry,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed August 09, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

February 1, 1995

This entry belongs to the following Handbook Special Projects: