Wright, James Gillenwaters (1809–1843)

By: Thomas W. Cutrer

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: August 3, 2019

James Gillenwaters Wright, physician and public servant, was born in Alabama in December 1809. He immigrated to Texas from Tennessee in May 1830, settling at Harrisburg, where he was elected clerk and established a medical practice. He was chosen to represent Harrisburg County in the Convention of 1833. During the Texas Revolution Wright served as an assistant surgeon for two months and as a volunteer private for one. He received a bounty grant in the area of Red River County for his military service and moved there in 1836. Wright is said to have received a 5,000-acre fee from a grateful patient; he was also accused of being a "quack." He was elected clerk of Red River Territory in 1836 and served until 1838. He was a Mason. In 1840 he owned 1,770 acres, four town lots, and a pleasure carriage. In 1841 Wright was chosen clerk of the Traveling Board of Land Commissioners for the region east of the Brazos River. He was married to Sarah Ann Caruthers, and they had four children. Wright passed away on March 5, 1843, in Paris, Texas.

Eugene C. Barker, ed., The Austin Papers (3 vols., Washington: GPO, 1924–28). Biographical Souvenir of the State of Texas (Chicago: Battey, 1889; rpt., Easley, South Carolina: Southern Historical Press, 1978). Compiled Index to Elected and Appointed Officials of the Republic of Texas, 1835–1846 (Austin: State Archives, Texas State Library, 1981). Pat Ireland Nixon, The Medical Story of Early Texas, 1528–1853 (Lancaster, Pennsylvania: Lupe Memorial Fund, 1946). Paris News, October 8, 1933. Texas House of Representatives, Biographical Directory of the Texan Conventions and Congresses, 1832–1845 (Austin: Book Exchange, 1941).

  • Health and Medicine
  • Physicians and Surgeons
  • General Practitioners
Time Periods:
  • Texas Revolution
  • Republic of Texas
  • Houston
  • Upper Gulf Coast
  • East Texas

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

Thomas W. Cutrer, “Wright, James Gillenwaters,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed August 10, 2022, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/wright-james-gillenwaters.

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August 3, 2019

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