Rowe, Joseph (1802–1866)

By: L. W. Kemp

Revised by: Randolph B. "Mike" Campbell

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: May 31, 2022

Joseph Rowe, planter, legislator and physician, was born in Caswell County, North Carolina, on June 3, 1802, the son of Joseph and Nancy Ann (Morrow) Rowe. He moved to Texas with his family in 1833 and received a league and labor of land in San Augustine County. He was issued a certificate of character on December 3, 1834, by Vital Flores, alcalde of Nacogdoches. Rowe was a member of the House of Representatives in the First and Second congresses of the Republic of Texas and was elected speaker of the Second. He was an unsuccessful candidate for the vice presidency of the republic on September 3, 1838. He was elected fourth vice president of the Philosophical Society of Texas when it was organized. In 1842 he was elected president of the board of trustees of the University of San Augustine. His home was three miles from San Augustine until late in 1845 or early in 1846, when he moved to a plantation on the Santiago Del Valle grant in Travis County.

By 1860, he listed his occupation in the census as physician, and on June 28 of that year, he was appointed a trustee of the State Deaf and Dumb Institute (later Texas School for the Deaf). Rowe was first married to Lavina Burditt. On July 6, 1851, he married Mrs. Emily Van Zandt. He was the father of four children. He died in Austin on March 18, 1866.

Texas House of Representatives, Biographical Directory of the Texan Conventions and Congresses, 1832–1845 (Austin: Book Exchange, 1941). George L. Crocket, Two Centuries in East Texas (Dallas: Southwest, 1932; facsimile reprod. 1962).

  • Education
  • School Trustees and Regents
  • Agriculture
  • Farmers
  • Plantation Owners
  • Health and Medicine
  • Physicians and Surgeons
  • Politics and Government
  • Government Officials
  • Republic of Texas Congressmen
  • First Congress (1836-1837)
  • Second Congress (1837-1838)
Time Periods:
  • Texas Revolution
  • Republic of Texas
  • Antebellum Texas
  • Civil War

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

L. W. Kemp Revised by Randolph B. "Mike" Campbell, “Rowe, Joseph,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed August 14, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

May 31, 2022

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