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SWEARINGEN, WILLIAM C.

SWEARINGEN, WILLIAM C. (?–1839). William C. Swearingen, soldier of the Republic of Texas, enlisted at Velasco on February 13, 1836, "for two years or the duration of the war." He joined Sam Houston's army on the Colorado River, and at the battle of San Jacinto he fought in Capt. Amasa Turner's Company B of Lt. Col. Henry W. Millard's Regular Infantry battalion. From the battlefield on April 23 Swearingen wrote a lengthy and detailed account of the campaign and battle to his brother Lemuel in Scottsville, Kentucky. The letter ends with the poignant request that his brother "kiss William for me and tell him pappy will be there in the fall and stay with him always." With the reorganization of the army after San Jacinto, Swearingen was transferred to Company A of the First Regiment, Regular Infantry, under Capt. John Smith, formerly Millard's first sergeant. He was posted to Galveston Island but served a part of his enlistment period on detached duty aboard the schooner Apollo out of Cedar Bayou. He received a promotion to sergeant on March 17 and resigned from the army on November 4, 1836, but reappeared on the muster roll of February 28, 1837. He died in Houston on December 24, 1839. Swearingen was most likely a kinsman of Elemeleck Swearingen, who also fought in Turner's company at San Jacinto, and of Elemeleck's brother V. W. Swearingen, who served in Capt. John York's company at the siege of Bexar and with Capt. Moseley Baker's company at San Jacinto. He subsequently took part in the Mier expedition and was incarcerated at Perote prison. Elemeleck and V. W. Swearingen moved from Kentucky to Milheim, Austin County, Texas, in 1830.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 
Sam Houston Dixon and Louis Wiltz Kemp, The Heroes of San Jacinto (Houston: Anson Jones, 1932). John H. Jenkins, ed., The Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835–1836 (10 vols., Austin: Presidial Press, 1973). W. C. Swearingen Letters, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.
Thomas W. Cutrer

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Handbook of Texas Online, Thomas W. Cutrer, "Swearingen, William C.," accessed August 24, 2016, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fsw07.

Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.