Samuel Norris, son of Edmund and Sarah (Rogers) Norris, was born in St. Mary's County, Maryland, in 1783. His parents moved to Natchez, Mississippi, in 1802 and in 1803 to the Rancho Naconichi near Attoyac Bayou in what is now Nacogdoches County, Texas. The family remained there until 1813, when they were driven into Louisiana by Joaquín de Arredondo. In 1820 Norris returned to Nacogdoches and in the fall of 1825 was elected alcalde. The election was contested by his opponent, Chichester Chaplin, son-in-law of Martin Parmer. Chaplin, supported by Parmer, seized the alcalde's office, but the political chief in Bexar ruled that Norris was the legally elected alcalde. Norris finally got possession of his office, but his lack of training and education made him unpopular, especially with the Anglo-American squatters. In what is known as the Fredonian Rebellion that group, headed by Parmer, took possession of Nacogdoches, arrested Norris and the clerk of the ayuntamiento, organized a court martial, tried them, and removed Norris from office, declaring him "forever incapable of holding any office of trust, honor, or profit in the said district." Norris was temporarily restored to office, but the political chief recognized the impropriety of keeping him there by force and soon replaced him. Norris moved to Louisiana, where he spent the remainder of his life.
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Eugene C. Barker, ed., The Austin Papers (3 vols., Washington: GPO, 1924–28). Bexar Archives, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin. Robert Bruce Blake Research Collection, Steen Library, Stephen F. Austin State University; Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin; Texas State Archives, Austin; Houston Public Library, Houston. Nacogdoches Archives, Steen Library, Stephen F. Austin State University; Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin; Texas State Archives, Austin.
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.
Robert Bruce Blake,
Handbook of Texas Online,
accessed May 29, 2022,
Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Original Publication Date:
Most Recent Revision Date:
June 6, 2020
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