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Woods, James B. (1802–1851)

Robert Wooster Biography Entry

James B. Woods, attorney and signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence, was born in Kentucky on January 21, 1802. He arrived in Texas in 1830 and became alcalde of the Liberty District in 1834. Woods represented Liberty at the Consultation of 1835. He was one of the Liberty delegates to the Convention of 1836 and signed the Texas Declaration of Independence on March 11, 1836. He served in the Texas army from July 7 to October 7, 1836. In 1838 Woods lost a controversial struggle with his brother-in-law Hugh B. Johnston for a house seat from Liberty County. During the campaign, Woods was accused of intemperance and of supporting the infamous T. D. Yocum. Woods was married to Mary A. (White) Woods, and they had three children. Tax rolls of 1838 report Woods as owning three slaves, two horses, forty cattle, and a half league of land. Woods reportedly committed suicide after killing a man in 1851. The Texas Centennial Commission placed a monument on his grave 3½ miles south of Liberty in 1936.

Louis Wiltz Kemp, The Signers of the Texas Declaration of Independence (Salado, Texas: Anson Jones, 1944; rpt. 1959).

Time Periods:

  • Texas Revolution

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

Robert Wooster, “Woods, James B.,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed April 19, 2021,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

September 1, 1995