Erastus Smith

(1787-1837)

Ancestor of Dr. Christopher Kirkpatrick Hull, DO

 

 

Erastus Smith was born April 19, 1787 in Duchess County, New York. Although he was hearing impaired, he became one of Sam Houston's most reliable and most trusted scouts. He was well known for his coolness in the presence of danger.

 

Smith moved with his parents to Mississippi Territory at the age of eleven. He first came to Texas in 1817 but stayed only a short time. He returned permanently in 1821, however, to help restore his health.

 

Smith adapted well to his new home. He soon learned the nature and customs of the Mexican settlers, and easily made friends among both his American and his Mexican neighbors. He attempted to remain neutral as tensions grew between Texas and Mexico, but was soon persuaded on the side of the Texans.

 

Already known as a superior scout, he was quickly recruited by the Texans. He was in the scouting party at the Battle of Concepcion and discovered the mule train that led to the Grass Fight. After the fall of the Alamo, Smith was sent by Sam Houston to gather particulars, and he returned with survivor Susannah Dickerson and her baby to the Houston camp.

 

On one of his missions with Henry Wax Karnes, Smith destroyed Vince's Bridge at the battle of San Jacinto. This blocked any escape routes from the battle site.

 

A short time after the Texas Revolution, he commanded a company of rangers to protect Texas' frontier settlements from Mexican and Indian raids. Smith then returned briefly with his family to Richmond, Texas, before he died on November 30, 1837.