Mallard, John Byler (1820–1854)

By: Mark Odintz

Revised by: Laurie E. Jasinski

Type: Biography

Published: April 1, 1995

Updated: October 15, 2014

John Byler Mallard, lawyer, judge, and state legislator, was born in Tennessee on January 4, 1820. He was an honor graduate of the University of Tennessee law school. In 1844 he married Susan Scott in Mississippi. They moved to Texas in 1845, and in 1846 Mallard's slaves built one of the first homes in Palestine, Anderson County. The 1850 census listed two children (a son and daughter) in the household. Mallard formed a law partnership in Palestine in 1851 with two other prominent lawyers, William Alexander and John H. Reagan, and he served as Anderson County's first chief justice in 1848. Mallard represented Anderson County in the House of the Fifth Texas Legislature and served from November 7, 1853, until his death in 1854. He was on the Contingent Expenses, Federal Relations, Judiciary, and Public Buildings committees. He was a Methodist and a Mason. Mallard died in Palestine on June 20, 1854, and was buried in Palestine City Cemetery. His widow married William Alexander, Mallard’s former law partner. The 1860 census for Anderson County indicated that Mallard and his wife had at least two additional children (another son and daughter) after the 1850 census was recorded. A Texas Historical Marker honoring Mallard was erected in 1965.

Marker Files, Texas Historical Commission, Austin.

  • Law, Law Enforcement, and Outlaws
  • Politics and Government
  • Judges
  • Lawyers
  • General Law
  • Fifth Legislature (1853-1854)
  • House

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

Mark Odintz Revised by Laurie E. Jasinski, “Mallard, John Byler,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed May 21, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

April 1, 1995
October 15, 2014