BURLESON, JR., JACOB (1839 ~ 1917). Jacob Burleson, Jr., Texas Ranger, Confederate veteran and nephew of Republic of Texas veteran and Vice President Edward Burleson, was born May 20, 1839, in Webberville, Texas to Jacob and Elizabeth Thomas Burleson. Elizabeth, also a Burleson, was the daughter of Aaron and Rebecca Burleson.
Born shortly after his father's death in the Battle of Brushy Creek, Jacob's mother, Elizabeth, remarried, but died in May 1848. Jacob was sent to live with his uncle, Jonathan, but petitioned through the Travis County Probate Court to live with his other uncle, Aaron. Aaron swore before the Court on October 27, 1857, that he would perform all the duties of Guardian of Jacob and his estate.
After moving in with Aaron, Jacob was sent to Baylor University in Independence, Texas, but he only stayed for seven months. He joined the Texas Rangers on November 10, 1858, and served under Captain John S. "Rip" Ford.
At the outbreak of the Civil War, Jacob enlisted as a private in the 2nd Texas Regiment of Mounted Rifles that was stationed along the Rio Grande River on May 20, 1861. He enlisted in Brownsville and once again served under John S. "Rip" Ford, who was appointed colonel of the regiment. After serving about eight months with this unit, it was disbanded and reorganized as the 2nd Texas Cavalry Regiment. Jacob did not join the 2nd Texas, and reported that he next served with Company I, 18th Texas Cavalry, which was also known as Darnell's Regiment.
While serving with Darnell's Regiment, Jacob was involved in a battle at Arkansas Post. In 1862, Confederate troops had control of the convergence of the Mississippi and Arkansas rivers and constructed an earthen fortification called Fort Hindman, which was being used to disrupt Union shipping along the Mississippi River. On January 11, 1863, Union troops destroyed the Fort and the nearby town and forced the Confederates to surrender, where some were taken prisoner. It is not known if Jacob was captured or not, but he claimed in the book, Reminiscences of the Boys in Gray, 1861 - 1865, that he was never wounded or taken prisoner.
Following Arkansas Post, Jacob returned to Texas and after recovering from an illness, joined Company A of the 37th Texas Cavalry (also called Terrell's Texas Cavalry) on August 21, 1863. When the unit was organized in Bastrop, Jacob was elected 2nd Lieutenant and finished his Confederate service with the 37th Cavalry. Throughout his military career, he participated in several battles, including Mansfield, Pleasant Hill, and Yellow Bayou.
After the War, Burleson returned to Texas and married Mary Ivy Hay Williams, the widow of Dan Williams, on July 16, 1868, in Pleasanton, Texas. The Burlesons remained in Pleasanton, where they were ranchers and began their family. They had five children, two of whom died at an early age. The family later moved to Carrizo Springs and had another child and raised three of Mary's children from her first marriage. In all the Burlesons raised twelve children: Nancy, Edward, Annie, Maggie, John, Aaron, Haddie, Belle, and Texas Grey, along with Mary's children from her first marriage, Mollie, Leroy, and Terah.
Suffering from respiratory problems, Jacob moved from Webberville to the Confederate Men's Home on April 7, 1905, where he remained until his death. While on furlough to visit his wife and daughter, Jacob died in Sprinkle, Texas on February 26, 1917. He was buried two days later in the Texas State Cemetery.
Information taken from: "Jacob Burleson, Jr.," Daughters of the Republic of Texas: Patriot Ancestry Album; Travis County Probate Court Records; Second Texas Cavalry Company K website at http://freepages.military.rootsweb.com/~yarbrough/; Company I, 18th Texas Cavalry, Darnell's Regiment website at http://pages.prodigy.net/procyon/lancaster/compi.htm; 37th Texas Cavalry Unit History website at http://www.37thtexas.org/html/UnitHist.html; Widow's Application for a Pension; Confederate Home Roster, Death Certificate, further information provided by descendant Helen Burleson Kelso, and additional information provided by Edward L. Williams.