Posted in Land and property, Marriage records

Today in our family history: 7 Mar 1852, Thomas Gooch and Verlinda Jennings were married in Williamson County, Texas

Today marks the 160th anniversary for Thomas Gooch and Verlinda Jennings, my Great-great grandparents.

And index to Williamson County marriages records their marriage as 7 Mar 1852. A later pension file gives it as 1852, but the county record is more reliable.

—-G. McLin, Williamson County, Texas Marriage Records 1849-1860 ([S.l. : s.n., 198-?]), p. 3.

One month later they purchased land near Verlinda’s family.  Here is an abstract of that record. William Jennings was her father:

22 April 1852- …I, G.W. Glassock of [Williamson County] have bargained unto Thomas Gooch, of [Williamson Co] …land on the waters of Berrys Creek for the consideration of one hundred dollars to me in hand paid by Thomas Gooch…Beginning at William Ginnings [William Jennings] North west corner; thence South 71 West 894 varas to the east line of 640 acres surveyed for J.M. Glassock bears a stone corner; thence South 19 East 1205 varas to the corner of said six hundred forty acre tract a live oak bears 35 East 40 varas another bears South 32 West 32 varas; thence N71E; 894v to W. Jennings thence N19W with Jennings line 1205 varas to the beginning, containing one hundred and ninety acres of more or less…G.W. GLASSOCK (seal) attest: J.B. BERRY

—-Texas. Williamson County Clerk, Texas, Williamson Co. – Deeds, 1848-1902; Index, 1835-1904 ([S.l.] : Southern Microfilm Corp., 1973, 1988-1989, Salt Lake City : Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah), Film #0977901, v. 3, p. 234.

Here is a link to an explanation of what a “vara” was.  (Hint:  it is an early unit of measurement for lands that were once under Spanish control.) 

Here is a link to an explanation of the “metes and bounds” system for surveying land.

A year and a half later he purchased more land:

27 Dec 1853- …we, Joseph P. Pulsifer of Jefferson County, and William Brazier of Williamson Co…for…the sum of seventy-five dollars to us in hand paid by Thomas Gooch…have sold…to Thomas Gooch…land situated in Williamson Co…being a part of two blocks, numbering 25 and 26, containing sixty six and a half acres of land more or less.  Beginning at the NE corner of fraction S. of block 26; and running S 71 degrees W 79.5 varas crossing North San Gabriel to the NW corner of said block 26; from thence S 19 degrees E to the middle San Gabriel, thence N with the meanderings of said stream to the junction of said stream with the North San Gabriel, thence with the main channel of the North San Gabriel to the E boundary of the fraction S of block 26; Thence N 19 W to the place of beginning as represented, upon a plat recorded in Land Register No. 5 page 76 in the County Court of said Williamson County; being a portion of the third of a league of land patented to Joseph P. Pulsifer, and recorded in the aforesaid office…and I William Brazier for the said Joseph P. Pulsifer, for our heirs…witness my hand…this 27th December 1853…Brazier Pulsifer, by William Brazier,atty, for Joseph P. Pulsifer.

—Texas. Williamson County Clerk, Texas, Williamson Co. – Deeds, 1848-1902; Index, 1835-1904 ([S.l.] : Southern Microfilm Corp., 1973, 1988-1989, Salt Lake City : Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah), Film #0977902, p. 101.

Less than three months later they purchased more land:

7 Feb 1854- …we, Joseph P. Pulsifer of Jefferson Co and William Brazier of Williamson Co…for…eighty dollars to us in hand paid by Thomas Gooch of…Williamson, …do…sell…land in Williamson Co…being a block of forty acres of land No 28 as represents upon the Record of the County of said Williamson County Court, by a platt or map recorded in Land Register No 5 page 76 being a portion of the third of a league of land patented to the said Joseph P. Pulsifer…Witness our hands and seals this 7th day of February 1854. ..Joseph P. Pulsifer, William Brazier, by J.B. Harrell, their attorney in fact.

—Texas.  Williamson County Clerk, Texas, Williamson Co. – Deeds, 1848-1902; Index, 1835-1904 ([S.l.] : Southern Microfilm Corp., 1973, 1988-1989, Salt Lake City : Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah), Film #0977902, p. 203.

Posted in History, Mexican War, Military

Today in our Family History: February 23, 1847, Thomas Gooch and the Battle of Buena Vista

Today marks the 165th anniversary of the Battle of Buena Vista in the Mexican-American War.  Thomas Gooch’s Mexican War pension file reveals he fought in the Battle of Buena Vista.  His pension application, dated 6 Feb 1882, states that he “was a corporal in…the 1st Regiment of Arkansas Volunteers in the War of 1846…That while in the service aforesaid…near a place called Saltillo Republic of Mexico, on the 23rd of February 1847, from hardships and exposure contracted chronic diarrhea.  Also at Battle of Buena Vista in a charge made by lancers, suffered loss of finger of left hand. Said disabilities still continue and greatly disable him for manual labor, he now asks a pension.”

An account of the Battle of Buena Vista is found at:

and the official report of the battle is found here:

Posted in Mexican War, Military, Military pension, Research tips

Thomas Gooch Mexican War Pension File

Thomas Gooch (widow Verlinda), WC #5820; Mexican War Pension Files; National Archives and Records Administration; Documents dated 1882-1883. Widow’s documents dated 1888.  Copy of original file in possession of Dayna Jacobs.

These are abstracts and extracts of key documents in the file:

On 1 July 1846 he enrolled in Co. G Mounted Regiment, Arkansas Volunteers (Capt. Edward Hunter’s Co., Colonel Yell’s Regiment) at Pariclifta, Sevier Co, AR. They rendevouzed at Washington, Hempstead Co, AR and were mustered into service for the Mexican War. Thomas was 3rd Corporal, while John Hall was 4th Corporal, and A.L. McAfee was first Lt. He says he incurred chronic diarrhea on 23 Feb 1847. Records show that his company was in action at Buena Vista on this date. He also says he lost a finger on his left hand in a charge made by lancers at the battle of Buena Vista. Jan/Feb rollcall records show him absent sick at Saltillo from 9 Feb 1847. He says he was in the hospital about 6 weeks under the care of an Army surgeon. On 27 May he was discharged from Saltillo and reenlisted as a private in Capt. Gaston Meare’s Co. of the Ark Mounted Vols. MOR dated 24 Jun 1848 reports him as deserted at Buena Vista 22 Jan 1848.

Since leaving the service he resided mostly in Llano Co and was a stock raiser.

6 Feb 1882… affidavit signed by A. V. Chism and David Fowler (mark). Witnesses R. A. McInnis and J.S. Atchison.

7 May 1883…affidavit signed by W.M. Owen, M.D. attesting to Thomas’ disability, and saying he treated him in 1850. His P.O. address is Round Rock, Williamson Co, TX.

9 May 1883…affidavit signed by W.A. Blackburn of Burnet, Burnet Co, TX, who was a lawyer and judge in the Llano area, and knew Thomas very well. He states, “I know of no man whose character for truth, honesty and integrity, and love of law and order, and peace in a community, is any better.”

9 May 1883…affidavit signed by W.W. Brooks, personal friend of Thomas. Brooks “resided in the county of Burnet and Sate of Texas and that Burnet in said county and state was his post office address from January 1st 1861 to May 9th 1865 and that he was personally acqainted with Thomas Gooch during all of that period and before and since, and knew him to be an outspoken Union man, and that he did not serve in the Confederate army, did not hold office under, pay taxes to willingly, or in any other manner aid or abetted the Confederate Gov….and that he has good reasons to believe that Thomas Gooch did not vote for secession for the reason that he knows that Thomas Gooch was very bitter against secession and very outspoken against the Confederacy, and that his life was in great danger on account of his Union principles during the above mentioned period, and that he was himself a Union man and loyal to the United States…”

9 May 1883…affidavit signed by G. McFarland… similar to Brooks’ statement.

11 May 1883…affidavit signed by Thomas Gooch says he has been farming on a small scale with the assistance of his children, and working some at the gunsmith trade.

23 May 1883…Court, Llano County.  State of Texas, County of Llano:  “…Personally appeared before the undersigned authority, Thomas Gooch, who being duly sworn upon his oath, declares and says that he was born on the 30th day of August A.D. 1826 in the town of Lexington, County of Fayette (sic), State of Missouri…”   signed E.R. Beeson, County Clerk

7 Nov 1888…Indian Territory, County of Chickasaw Nation:  “…On this 7th day of November 1888, personally appeared before me, a U.S. Commissioner for the West Dist. of Ark, Mrs. Verlinda Gooch, a resident of Paul’s Valley, in the county of Chickasaw Nation, Indian Ty., who, being by me first duly sworn according to law, deposes and says:  I am the widow of Thomas Gooch…that I was married under my name of Verlinda Jennings to my said husband by Parson Miller, on or about the 7th day of March 1851 at Georgetown, WIlliamson Co., in the state of Texas, and lived with my said husband from the date of my said marriage until the day of his death, to wit, the 2nd day of March, 1885, when my said husband died at Llano Co., in the state of Texas, and I have not since married…”  signed Verlinder Gooch, witnesses Martin V. Shults, and William P. Croft

30 Nov 1898 “…Verlinda Gooch, who was a pensioner…under certificate No. 5820.. has been dropped because of her death… Died 5 Nov, 1898”

Posted in Cemetery, Photos

Thomas and Verlinda Gooch headstone, Bluffton Cemetery, Llano County, Texas

Thomas and Verlinda Jennings Gooch are buried in “new” Bluffton Cemetery, Llano County, Texas.  Thomas died 2 Mar 1885 and Verlinda died 5 Nov 1898.

394 graves from the original Bluffton Cemetery were moved in the mid-1930s because a dam was being constructed on the Colorado River (no, not that Colorado River) and the area would soon be under water.  Buchanan Dam was completed in 1937 using funds from the New Deal.

These are photos Thomas and Verlinda Gooch’s headstone, and the military marker for Thomas, as they were posted on by Kim Runkel.  Thomas was a Mexican War veteran and I will be posting his pension file soon.

Link to Find a Grave post: