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MORRIS, FRANCIS ASBURY (1817–1881). Francis Asbury Morris, clergyman and attorney general of the Republic of Texas, was born in Marietta, Ohio, on September 3, 1817, the son of Thomas A. and Abigail (Scales) Morris. He studied law and was admitted to the Ohio bar before moving to Texas in the late 1830s. He was attorney general of the Republic of Texas under President Mirabeau B. Lamar from May 10, 1841, until he resigned on December 13 of that year. In 1842 Morris accepted a position as professor of languages at St. Charles College in St. Charles, Missouri, and entered the ministry of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He married Mary Fielding on October 15, 1845, and they had at least one child. When the St. Louis Conference was established in 1845, Morris became a pastor in the St. Louis Circuit and filled various pastorates in that circuit until sometime in the 1870s. He died in St. Louis on September 24, 1881, and was buried at Bellefontaine Cemetery.


Charles Adams Gulick, Jr., Harriet Smither, et al., eds., The Papers of Mirabeau Buonaparte Lamar (6 vols., Austin: Texas State Library, 1920–27; rpt., Austin: Pemberton Press, 1968). John F. Marlay, The Life of Rev. Thomas A. Morris (Cincinnati, Ohio: Hitchcock and Walden, 1875). Marilyn M. Sibley, ed., "Bishop Morris in Texas," East Texas Historical Journal 3 (October 1965).

Vivian Elizabeth Smyrl


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

Vivian Elizabeth Smyrl, "MORRIS, FRANCIS ASBURY," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed November 25, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.