Charles L. Pyron, Confederate army officer and the son of Charles Pyron, was born in Marion County, Alabama, about 1819. On June 23, 1840, he joined the Masonic fraternity in Warren, Fannin County, Texas. On September 28, 1845, he mustered into federal service as a private in Robert A. Gillespie's company of Texas Mounted Rangers, but he left the company on December 28 after hiring a substitute. With the outbreak of the Mexican War, however, he returned to Gillespie's command, now designated Company I of John C. Hays's First Regiment, Texas Mounted Rifles. Pyron took part in the battle of Monterrey and then was discharged on September 29, 1846. After returning to San Antonio he purchased a ranch on the San Antonio River near San José y San Miguel de Aguayo Mission. On November 15, 1849, at Port Lavaca, he married Octavia Caroline Smith. The couple had four children.
On March 21, 1861, Pyron accepted Governor Edward Clark's commission to raise a company of cavalry for state service. On April 15 he organized his company at San Antonio, and on May 9 led it under Earl Van Dorn in the capture of the federal forces at San Lucas Springs. Pyron and his men were mustered into Confederate service as Company B, Second Texas Mounted Rifles, on May 23, 1861; they were first posted to garrison duty at Fort Lancaster and Fort Stockton and were subsequently assigned to Gen. Henry H. Sibley's army in New Mexico. Pyron was promoted to major in December 1861, the eve of the campaign, and was assigned to the command of a battalion of Col. John Robert Baylor's regiment. He participated in the battles of Valverde and Glorieta as well as numerous skirmishes before the army was forced to retreat into Texas.
Pyron was promoted to lieutenant colonel in command of Baylor's Second Texas Mounted Rifles at the end of the New Mexico campaign, when the regiment was reorganized as the Second or Pyron's Texas Cavalry. He was later promoted to colonel. Pyron died at his San Antonio ranch on August 24, 1869.
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Martin Hardwick Hall, The Confederate Army of New Mexico (Austin: Presidial Press, 1978). Marcus J. Wright, comp., and Harold B. Simpson, ed., Texas in the War, 1861–1865 (Hillsboro, Texas: Hill Junior College Press, 1965).
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The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.
Thomas W. Cutrer,
“Pyron, Charles Lynn,”
Handbook of Texas Online,
accessed May 17, 2022,
Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Original Publication Date:
Most Recent Revision Date:
March 22, 2012
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