Andrew Jackson Kercheville

1821 - 1913

Submitted by Larry W. Luckett


Andrew Jackson Kercheville was born December 4, 1821 in King and Queen Co, Virginia, and died March 6, 1913 in Kyle, TX. Although born in Virginia, A. J. seems to have left that state at an early age. According to family lore, at the age of 12 to 14 years, he ran away from his parent's home in Mississippi to the home of a sister in Huntsville, Alabama, when he was found to be gambling by playing marbles for keeps.


In 1842, A. J. answered the call to arms and adventure by joining with other Southerners to help the Republic of Texas repel forces attempting to re-impose Mexican domination. He sailed from Mobile, AL, landing at Galveston, TX on April 23, 1842, where he mustered in as a Private, in Capt T. N. Wood's Company, Republic of Texas Militia. In later years, he recalled how President Sam Houston had lamented, "there isn't a dollar in the treasury -- you must get along the best you can." Although enlisting for six months, he served only four, mustering out at Goliad, TX in August 1842, when the threat of further Mexican aggression had dissipated. A. J. did finally get paid for his service to Texas, but not until 1854 when the State settled the public debts of the former Republic of Texas.


A. J. fought the Mexicans again during the U.S. war with Mexico. In 1846 when the call for volunteers came, A. J. was working as either a grocer or as a tailor. He enlisted for service in Company D, under Capt. Sydenham Moore, in the 1st Alabama Regiment (Volunteers), commanded by Col. John L. Coffee. He mustered into the unit in Mobile, Alabama on May 25, 1846 for twelve months service. His service record with the U.S. Army indicates duty with General Taylor at Camargo, Mex (October 1846) and with General Scott at Tampico (December 1846) and at Jalapa (April 1847) including the storming of Vera Cruz in March 1847. Their enlistments up, the volunteers left Mexico following the battle at Jalapa and shipped back to the United States. A. J. was discharged at New Orleans in May 1847. He received a bounty grant of 160 acres of land, but its disposition is unknown.


At some point after the War, A. J. traveled back to Texas. At Independence, TX in 1852, A. J. married Mary Milam McCrocklin, daughter of Jesse L. McCrocklin. Then in 1856 A. J. and Mary moved with her father's family to settle on the location of McCrocklin's original Mexican land grant. The land grant of over 1300 acres was on the Martin's Branch of the Rio Blanco, approximately seven miles east of the present city of Blanco. McCrocklin’s original intent to settle in 1834 in the Mexican colony planned by Ben Milam was side-tracked by the death of Milam at the Siege of Bexar and by the Texas Revolution, wherein McCrocklin was at the Battle of San Jacinto.


A. J. and Mary's son, Richard, born in July 1856, was purported to be the first Anglo child born in what would become Blanco County. A. J. and Mary eventually had 11 children. While A. J. and Mary owned no land in Blanco, they did own horses and cattle that ranged on the father-in-law's ranch. As the settlement of Blanco grew, A. J. helped to organize the new Blanco County from Comal County. He was elected and served as Assessor and Collector of Taxes in 1859-1860, obtaining 10% of receipts as payment for his efforts. A. J. had become a Mason in the 1840s, and organized the lodge in Blanco, where he remained a member throughout his life.


A. J. became a veteran for a third time, and under a third flag, when during the U.S. Civil War, he served in the Texas State Troops (TST) in various Home Guard units, organized to protect settlers on the frontier from marauding Indians and bushwhackers. (1) On May 4, 1861 A. J. enlisted as a Private in the Company of Minute Men for Blanco Co, Capt W.A. Blackwell, commanding. (2) On March 8, 1862 he was elected as Captain for the Comal County Company, 31st Brigade, TST. (3) A. J. served as Private with the Cavalry Company for Blanco County, 31st Brigade, TST, but when the unit transferred to C.S.A. his enlistment was rejected on the basis of his age, 42 years. (4) On January 30, 1864 he enlisted as 5th Sergeant, Company for Blanco Co, 3rd Frontier District, TST, Capt R. J. Irving, Commanding, but again his enlistment was rejected due to his age. Although he served in three different wars under three different flags, he was never wounded nor spent a day in the hospital.


Following the War, A. J. was called "Captain" Kercheville in recognition of his service to and leadership in his community. In June 1866, he was elected as Sheriff of Blanco County; and he served until 1869, when he was removed by the Federal forces enforcing Reconstruction in Texas after the Civil War. Three years as Sheriff in a frontier settlement, recovering from the disruption of the War, and beset by marauding Indians, cattle thieves, and other desperados could not have been a comfortable experience. Later, in 1879 he was appointed to fill an unexpired term as County Commissioner of Precinct No. 1, Blanco County. Unfortunately, details of his public service at that time were lost when the County Courthouse burned in the 1880s. In 1912, A. J. met at the Capitol in Austin with Gov. Colquitt, to discuss and publicize the Governor's efforts to save the deteriorating Alamo chapel and grounds.


In 1889 after the death of Jesse McCrocklin, A. J., Mary, and family left the ranch in Blanco and moved to San Marcos, TX. They moved to Kyle, TX in 1898, where A. J. died at home, following a stroke in March 1913. He is buried in the cemetery at Kyle, TX, next to Mary, his wife of 61 years, who died November 13, 1921. In an adjacent plot, his sister, Martha Kercheville Glass (1819-1907) is buried.




A Twentieth Century History of Southwest Texas, Illustrated, (Lewis Publishing Co, Chicago, 1907).

Media: Book.

Location: Barker Texas History Collection, Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.

Farris, Frances Bramlett, From Rattlesnakes to Road Agents -- Rough Times on the Frio, (TCU Press, Ft Worth, TX, 1985).

Media: Book.

Location: Copy in collection of Nancy Kercheville Elliott.

Comments: Richly detailed information on early Kercheville family, including picture of Mack Kercheville (1861-1881) and story of his murder on the trail by cattle thieves.

Marriage Records of Washington County, TX, "Electronic."

Media: Electronic.


Comments: Official records extracted and copied to website.

Note that record for A. J. Kercheville is entered as "Kucheville" on the website.

Moursund, John Stribling, Blanco County History, (Nortex Press, Burnett, TX, 1981).

Media: Book.

Location: Copy in library of Larry Luckett.

Moursund, John Stribling, Blanco County Families for 100 Years, (Nortex Press, Burnett, TX, 1981). Media: Book.

Location: Copy in library of Larry Luckett.

Public Debt Claim for Kercheville, Andrew J., (Republic Claims Collection).

Media: Microfilm. Call number: Reel 166; Frames 0586-0596.

Location: Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

Comments: Claim No 2788, May 12, 1854; for service to the Republic of Texas, Apr-Aug 1842, in Capt T. N. Wood's Co.


San Antonio Express, "Capt. A. J. Kercheville Dies," March 6, 1913.

Media: Newspaper.

Comments: Subheadline: Appoplexy Kills Texas Pioneer at Age of 91 Years.


San Antonio Express, "Veteran Meets Governor --- Andrew Jackson Kercheville of Kyle, 90 Years Old, Chats of War for Texas Independence," Jan 31, 1912.

Media: Newspaper. Call number: Vertical File, A. J. Kercheville.

Location: Barker Texas History Collection, Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.


Survivor’s Service Pension - Mexican War, File No. 3651, February 4, 1887 for Andrew Jackson Kercheville, for service in Co. D, 1st Regiment, Alabama Infantry, Volunteers

Media: Microfilm. U. S. Army Service Record

Location: Copy in library of Larry Luckett.

Comment: Refers to Bounty Land Grant No. 4156-160-47

Tombstone, Kyle, TX Cemetery.

Media: Tombstone.

Location: West of Kyle, Hays County, TX.

Wall, Mary Kercheville, Application for Membership -- Daughters of the Republic of Texas

Media: Official Record. Member Number 1320, filed May 10, 1924

Location: DRT Headquarters and Museum, Austin, TX (Copy in library of Larry Luckett).

Winston, Lou Sledge Byrne, Winston Genealogy Research Notes.

Media: Other.

Location: Copy obtained from Nancy Kercheville Elliott, Mar 2000.

Comments: Handwritten notes on NYPL Form LLZ, March 8, 1981; Printed Genealogy File, September 28, 1996.