Albert and Ethel Herzstein Library, San Jacinto Museum of History

William McFarland Papers

Manuscript Collection: MC164

Collection Summary

Creator: M'Farland, William, 1774-1840
Title: William McFarland papers
Dates: 1837-1842
Abstract: Three financial documents include the signatures of prominent San Augustine residents William McFarland, William D. Ratliff, and Alexander Horton.
Identification: MC164
Quantity: 3 items
Language: Materials are in English.
Repository: Albert and Ethel Herzstein Library, San Jacinto Museum of History, La Porte, Texas

Creator Sketch

William McFarland was born on May 8, 1774, in Lancaster, Pennsylvania and was the son of Thomas and Hannah (Stuart) McFarland. He married Ann Singer, daughter of Jacob and Elizabeth Singer, with whom he had six children, one of whom was surveyor Thomas Stuart McFarland. In 1799, after becoming a surveyor, William moved to Ohio and began laying out towns, one of which is named after him. By 1817, having lived in Indiana, he moved his family to Louisiana where his wife died shortly thereafter. In 1830, he moved his family to Texas where he purchased a portion of the Guerrero grant. He participated in the Battle of Nacogdoches in 1832 and represented the Ayish Bayou District at the 1832 Convention in San Felipe. McFarland was also a part of the committee to select the site of the town San Augustine, where in 1836 he was appointed chief justice by President Sam Houston. In 1838, McFarland was a member of the Texas Boundary Commission where he was appointed to determine the line between the United States and the Republic of Texas. He died on August 16, 1840, at Belgrade.

Scope and Content Note

The William McFarland Papers are comprised of three financial documents: two promissory notes and a receipt. The two San Augustine County, Texas, partially printed promissory notes are to William McFarland and are dated in 1837 and 1838, signed by W. D. Ratliff and A. Horton respectively. Also included is a receipt of Capt. Ratliff, commander of the company in San Augustine, for fifty dollars dated in 1842.


Arrangement is chronological.


Restrictions on Access


Terms Governing Use

Open for research by appointment.

Publication Rights

Copyright has not been assigned to the San Jacinto Museum of History. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Library Director. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the San Jacinto Museum of History as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the researcher.

Index Terms

M'Farland, William, 1774-1840
Ratliff, William D.
Horton, Alexander, 1810-1894
San Augustine County (Tex.)

Administrative Information


[Identification of Item], William McFarland Papers, MC164, San Jacinto Museum of History, Houston, Texas.


Purchased for the museum by Ike Moore, June 1941.

Processing Information

Processed by Lisa M. Lomas, 2011.


"McFarland, William." The Handbook of Texas Online


box folder
164.4 1 Promissory Note 1837, 1838

box folder
164.4 2 Receipt 1842 January 16